Yukiya Amano, Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), said on Thursday, February 21, that decommissioning the tsunami-hit Fukushima power plant’s ruined nuclear reactors should not be done by Japan alone. He said that the country “should draw on the wisdom and the most advanced technologies from around the world.” Hence, IAEA is planning to propose a multinational mission for this purpose.
A team dispatched by the IAEA is said to travel to Japan in April to submit the international body’s proposal on how to go about dismantling the reactor. Some experts from IAEA will also visit the Fukushima Prefecture on Wednesday, February 27, involving a project to be implemented with the prefectural government to help in the decontamination process of areas affected by fallout from the March 2011 nuclear disaster. Meanwhile, Amano said that it might be important to form a council within IAEA specifically tasked to oversee decommissioning of all nuclear plants.
Involving other advanced countries in the decommissioning of the No. 1 reactor could lead to the development of new technologies needed to clean up reactors around the world. Especially since a number are already on the verge of reaching the end of their service life. Also, the idea of having experts from other countries cooperate as regards to the Fukushima reactors will dispel the suspicions of other countries or certain communities that Japan is trying to monopolize the decommissioning industry—one that is likely to be lucrative as 400 reactors in the world are about to see their ends.