Prime Minister Fumio Kishida is considering meeting with International Atomic Energy Agency Director-General Rafael Grossi as early as next Tuesday over the planned release into the sea of treated water from the disaster-crippled Fukushima No.1 nuclear power plant, sources have said.
Grossi is expected to hand to the prime minister a draft of a comprehensive report to be compiled by the IAEA shortly on the safety of the treated water that will be released from the Fukushima No. 1 plant, operated by Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings (Tepco). The plant in Fukushima Prefecture was the site of a triple meltdown during the Great East Japan Earthquake and tsunami disasters in March 2011.
The government plans to start releasing the treated water, which contains radioactive tritium, into the ocean around this summer. The concentration of tritium, which cannot be removed by purification equipment, in the water will be reduced to less than one-fortieth of the state-set safety standard before the release.
Kishida is slated to make a final decision on when to start the water release based partly on the IAEA report.
Tepco has almost completed the construction of facilities necessary for the water release. The Nuclear Regulation Authority started conducting a pre-use inspection of the facilities Wednesday.