The operator of the crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant on Wednesday started releasing a fourth batch of treated radioactive water into the sea, in what will be the last discharge for the fiscal year ending March.

As in previous rounds, Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings (Tepco) will discharge 7,800 metric tons of treated water over about 17 days, having confirmed that the radioactivity level of the latest batch of water meets the standards set by the government and the utility.

China, which opposes the water release, has banned Japanese seafood imports since the first discharge in late August. The two countries have engaged in informal discussions to resolve the matter, but no substantial progress has been made.