• English
  • العربية
  • 中文
  • Français
  • Русский
  • Español

IAEA Task Force to Conduct Fourth Japan Mission in Safety Review of Treated Water Discharge from Fukushima Daiichi

Vienna, Austria

The Task Force set up by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to review the safety of Japan’s plan to discharge treated water from the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station into the sea will next week conduct its fourth expert mission to the country over the past year.

The 16–20 January 2023 visit — part of a series of Task Force missions that began in February 2022 — is the second to assess the regulatory aspects of the plan to discharge the ALPS (Advanced Liquid Processing System) treated water that has accumulated at the site since the March 2011 Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant accident.

The first such mission took place in March 2022, after which the Task Force had issued a report with its initial regulatory-related observations.

The Task Force’s regulatory-focused assessment is part of its three-pronged review carried out before, during and after the discharge of the ALPS treated water, which is expected to start this year and last for decades. 

The Task Force is also assessing the plan’s technical and operational aspects, with two such missions conducted last year. In addition, the IAEA initiated the data corroboration by carrying out independent sampling, measurement and analysis related to the water discharge.

The Government of Japan announced its Basic Policy in April 2021 to discharge the water into the sea, subject to regulatory approval from Japan’s Nuclear Regulation Authority (NRA), the independent body set up in response to the 2011 accident.

At Japan’s request, the IAEA’s Task Force, a group of IAEA specialists and external experts from eleven countries, is conducting a multiyear review of the safety of the discharge plan against relevant IAEA international safety standards.

During next week’s mission, the Task Force will meet with NRA officials in Tokyo to discuss regulatory responsibilities, the authorization process, preparations for source and environmental radiation monitoring, and the NRA’s plans to consult with and involve the public in the regulatory process.

During the mission in March 2022, the Task Force had observed a commitment to align the regulatory plans related to the ALPS treated water discharge with the IAEA safety standards. Some members of the Task Force will next week also visit the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station to observe the technical and other preparations for the treated water discharge there.

Gustavo Caruso, Director of the IAEA Department of Nuclear Safety and Security and Chair of the Task Force, will hold a press conference on the final day of the mission, 16:00–17:00 (GMT+9) on 20 January 2023.

The press conference will be hosted by the Foreign Press Center Japan in Tokyo and will be streamed live. Further details on attendance can be found on their website here.

A comprehensive report containing the overall conclusions of the Task Force will be published before the ALPS treated water is released.

More details on the Fukushima Daiichi ALPS Treated Water Discharge can be found on the IAEA’s dedicated webpage.

Last update: 11 January 2023

Stay in touch