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Ex-Japan PM's crisis adviser says nuke danger at Fukushima still exists

Tokyo , Fri, 10 Feb 2012 ANI

Tokyo, Feb 10(ANI): A former special adviser to Naoto Kan has warned that the meltdown crisis at the Fukushima plant is far from being over.


He said the Fukushima crisis has exposed serious nuclear problems that Japan would have to tackle in the years to come.


I would say (the crisis) just opened a Pandora's box," The Japan Times quoted Hiroshi Tasaka, as saying.asaka holds doctorate in nuclear engineering and is now a professor at Tama University. He was one of a select group that had a glimpse of a secret worst-case scenario document written by the Japan Atomic Energy Commission on March 25.


He said spent fuel pools had caused the major problem during the meltdown crisis.


"According to the scenario, the biggest risk during the meltdown crisis wasn't the reactors themselves but the spent fuel pools sitting atop them, particularly the one above reactor 4, which still contains about 1,500 nuclear fuel assemblies," he said.


But its fuel rods were in the pool outside the reactor, and its coolant water fell dangerously low.Adding to the danger is that the fuel pool is now directly exposed to the outside environment after a hydrogen explosion blew off the upper part of the reactor building on March 15," he said.


Tasaka said the Fukushima crisis has brought to light the hazard of spent fuels.


"The Fukushima crisis has highlighted the dangers of spent fuel pools, which are outside the robust primary containment vessels of the reactors themselves," he further added.


He believes what makes the matter worse is that the government doesn't have any place to store it permanently.


Tasaka is deeply concerned about the 'groundless optimism displayed by bureaucrats and business leaders as they rush to restart dozens of reactors that have stopped functioning for safety checks since March 11.I understand quite well the intentions of the government, which now wants to send out a message of hope. But at this stage, all the risks should be put on the table," he said. (ANI)


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