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IAEA Review Team Sees Fukushima Daiichi Site First Hand

IAEA experts visiting TEPCO's Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station on 27 November 2013 looked at the fuel assembly removal process in Reactor Unit 4. Last week, TEPCO began moving nuclear fuel assemblies from Reactor Unit 4 to the Common Spent Fuel Pool. (Photo: G. Webb/IAEA)

A team of IAEA experts today visited TEPCO's Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station as part of an independent review of Japan's efforts and plans to decommission the nuclear accident site. At Japan's request, the team began a nearly two-week-long mission on 25 November 2013. It will assess the nation's Mid-and-Long-Term Roadmap towards the Decommissioning of TEPCO's Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station Units 1-4.

Today, the 19-member team watched fuel removal operations at Reactor Unit 4, visited the Common Spent Fuel Pool (CSFP) where Unit 4's fuel is headed, and viewed a temporary dry cask storage area where older fuel assemblies from the CSFP have been transferred.

In addition, the team saw site facilities and efforts to manage contaminated water, including storage tanks and water treatment operations, such as the Advanced Liquid Processing System.

"Since I first visited this site two-and-a-half years ago, I'm truly impressed with how much Japan has accomplished towards recovering from the terrible accident of 11 March 2011. Our team of experts learned a lot today during our visit to the site, and we're looking forward to more discussions with Japanese officials in the coming days," said team leader Juan Carlos Lentijo, Director of the IAEA Division of Nuclear Fuel Cycle and Waste Technology.

The team will deliver a draft report summary to the public when the mission ends on 4 December 2013.


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