Steam seen at Japans's Fukushima reactors

2013-09-13 10:05
Aerial view of the Tokyo Electric Power Co. Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, including the number 1 (from top C) , number 2, number 3 and number 4 (bottom C) nuclear reactors. (Jiji Press/ AFP)

Aerial view of the Tokyo Electric Power Co. Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, including the number 1 (from top C) , number 2, number 3 and number 4 (bottom C) nuclear reactors. (Jiji Press/ AFP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Tokyo - Vapour has begun rising again from a reactor at the Fukushima nuclear power plant, more than two-and-a-half years after its core melted down, the site's Japanese operator said on Friday.

Tokyo Electric Power said it believed the steam was coming from a puddle sitting atop the reactor, but has not been able to clarify why vapour started appearing occasionally from July this year.

Tepco said the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant remained stable, with sensors in and around it showing no increase in levels of radioactive release.

The steam appeared as Tepco found more evidence that radioactive waste water at the plant was contaminating groundwater that is on its way to the sea.

Thousands of tonnes of water were poured on the reactors to tame the meltdowns sparked by the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami. Tepco says their temperature is now stable but they need to be kept cool to prevent them running out of control again.

The continuing nuclear catastrophe at Fukushima has come under the international spotlight in recent weeks as Tokyo fought off challenges from Madrid and Istanbul for the right to host the 2020 Games.

Speaking to Olympic chiefs in Buenos Aires ahead of their decision to award the Games to Tokyo, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said the situation at Fukushima was "under control".

Thousands of tonnes of radioactive water are being stored in temporary tanks at Fukushima. Much of it has been used to cool molten reactors at the plant.

Tepco and Japanese officials are considering releasing some of it into the Pacific Ocean after filtering out radioactive materials, but face opposition from fisherman and neighbouring countries.

The Japanese government has decided to spend $470m on a scheme to freeze the soil around the reactors to form an impenetrable wall of ice they hope will direct groundwater away from them.

Read more on:    tepco  |  japan  |  nuclear

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.