Tokyo now taking Onagawa debris

Kyodo, Staff Report

The Tokyo Metropolitan Government on Friday began storing tsunami debris from Onagawa, Miyagi Prefecture, for incineration after conducting test burns about two months ago to determine whether the ash would present a public radiation hazard.

Tokyo is also taking in tsunami debris from Miyako, Iwate Prefecture, and eventually plans to dispose of a combined 500,000 tons of rubble from the two struggling prefectures.

Amid public radiation fears from the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear disaster, the metro government checked samples of Onagawa debris in December by burning it in Ota and Shinagawa wards. Metro officials said no problems were found, leading to the decision to incinerate the debris with ordinary Tokyo waste.

In December, a garbage disposal corporation jointly formed by Tokyo’s 23 wards test-incinerated mixed garbage consisting of 80 percent Tokyo waste and 20 percent Onagawa debris. The test detected no nuclear materials above unacceptable limits in the exhaust gas and water, and found that any radioactive materials present were on a par with Tokyo waste incinerated from April 2010 to November 2011.