On Monday the process to remove over 400 tons of spent fuel began at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant in Japan. The delicate rod removal is an unprecedented procedure that Tokyo Electric Power (TEPCO), the company that operates the plant, has continually reassured the world that it can handle. But after years of obfuscation by TEPCO, ever since the tsunami and earthquake that laid waste to parts of Fukushima in March 2011, nuclear researcher and activist Harvey Wasserman of nukefree.org, doesn’t want to give the company another chance.
The fuel rods at Reactor Number Four, can’t heat up, be exposed to air or break without releasing deadly gas, says Wasserman, but the cooling pool they’ve been resting in is leaky and potentially corroded by seawater and it’s feared it could not withstand another tremor or quake. The cooling pool is also 100 feet up:
“These rods have to be brought to the ground. It’s never been done under these kinds of circumstances.” Says Wasserman. “I believe we got better information from the Soviet Union about Chernobyl than we’re getting from TEPCO and the Japanese about Fukushima,” He told GRITtv.