Total Insanity: Japanese Government To Burn Radioactive Debris From Fukushima 20-Km No-Entry Zone If Cesium Level Is Less Than 100,000 Bq/Kg

Japanese Government to Start Clearing Disaster Debris Inside 20-Km No-Entry Zone in Fukushima, Burn Debris If Cesium Is Less Than 100,000 Bq/kg (EX-SKF, April 7, 2012):

Kahoku Shinpo, a local paper in Fukushima, reports that the national government will build the first debris storage areas in Naraha-machi, which lies inside the 20-kilometer radius no-entry zone around Fukushima I Nuclear Power Plant, to store the disaster debris to be collected from inside the no-entry zone as the zone gets reorganized into three new zones.

All of Naraha-machi’s no-entry zone will be newly designated as “zone preparing for the lifting of the evacuation order (避難指示解除準備区域)” which allows the residents to come back freely.

The government will (or hopes to, I should say) build an incinerator to burn the burnable debris in a nearby town of Hirono-machi, as long as the density of radioactive cesium on/in the debris is 100,000 becquerels/kg or less.

100,000 Bq/kg of cesium on the debris will be concentrated in the ashes, up to 33 times according to the Ministry of the Environment. I wonder if the Ministry has a plan for the disposal of bag filters, decommissioning the incinerator, and safety of the workers. (Just saying.)

Well we know the game. All that’s needed is to dilute the highly contaminated debris by mixing with less contaminated debris or garbage from elsewhere. Or, since Naraha-machi is less contaminated inside the no-entry zone than some of the other municipalities, it will be ideal place to bring in the debris from other municipalities inside the no-entry zone and mix and match with that in Naraha-machi. And burn.

Goshi Hosono, Minister of the Environment, was seen speaking with the representatives of Naraha-machi yesterday. Naraha-machi is holding an election right now. Hosono is seen having done a hit job on Naraha-machi while the town’s leadership is in transition. Same old, same old.

Consider this news as part of the Ministry’s plan to let private businesses do the debris disposal inside the no-entry zone unless the debris is from the urgent infra-building projects, as this debris storage project will probably be up for bidding. Most likely, the big general construction companies already doing the government decontamination projects will win, who will then parcel out projects to subcontractors. Accountability will be clear as mud.

From Kahoku Shinpo (4/8/2012):

国、楢葉にがれき集積場 来月にも着工 警戒区域で初

National government to build debris storage areas in Naraha-machi, the first inside the no-entry zone; construction to begin next month

東京電力福 島第1原発事故で大部分が警戒区域となっている福島県楢葉町の沿岸部2カ所で、国が5月にも東日本大震災で発生したがれきを保管する集積場の整備を始める ことが7日、分かった。震災から1年以上たっても警戒区域内の震災がれきはほとんど手付かずの状態で、同区域内で大規模ながれきの保管場所の整備は初め て。

It was revealed on April 7 that the national government will start building storage areas for the debris from March 11, 2011 disaster in May in two coastal locations in Naraha-machi, Fukushima Prefecture. Most of Naraha-machi is inside the no-entry zone. More than one year after the disaster, the disaster debris inside the no-entry zone hasn’t been dealt with. It will be the first construction of large-scale debris storage areas inside the no-entry zone.

環境省や楢葉町によると、すでに町内2カ所に計約 2.5ヘクタールの用地を選定、土地所有者らと契約に向けた最終調整を進めている。来月にも着工し、夏以降、町内のがれき約2万5千トンを順次搬入する。 今後、警戒区域の再編に伴い、本格化する町の復興に向けた作業の後押しになると期待される。

According to the Ministry of the Environment and Naraha-machi, total 2.5-hectare land has already been selected at 2 locations. Final negotiations are under way to sign the contracts with the land owners. The construction will start next month, and about 25,000 tonnes of debris in Naraha-machi will be brought to the storage areas starting summer. As the no-entry zone gets reorganized, the debris storage areas are expected to help expedite the projects for the recovery and rebuilding of the town.


The debris collected at the storage areas will be separated into flammable and non-flammable debris. If the density of radioactive cesium on the debris exceeds 100,000 becquerels/kg, the debris will be transported to the intermediate storage facility that the national government plans to build [somewhere] to store the waste from decontamination.


If the density of radioactive cesium is 100,000 becquerels/kg or less and the debris is flammable, it will be burned at the temporary incineration plant that the government hopes to build in Hirono-machi and other locations. The non-flammable debris will be buried in the controlled landfill site.


The debris storage areas will be installed with fences to prevent the spread of dust. The government is also considering putting the sandbags around the debris to lower the air radiation levels.


All of the no-entry zone inside Naraha-machi will be reorganized into “zone preparing for the lifting of the evacuation order”, which allows free access to the area by the residents. Work such as rebuilding the infrastructure and demolition of houses will start in full swing. The town officials are looking forward to the debris storage area. If the disaster debris gets cleared away, restoration of the farmland will be possible, they say.


In the no-entry zone that covers 6 municipalities along the coast in Fukushima, including Naraha-machi, there are about 474,000 tonnes of debris from the earthquake and tsunami. Most of the debris are left untouched.


The Ministry of the Environment is selecting the locations in other municipalities along the coast with the no-entry zones for disaster debris storage.

I wonder who those landowners are.

Hirono-machi, where the national government wants to build an incinerator plant, is located south of Naraha-machi.

I find it amusing that the level of sophistication of the Ministry of the Environment is about the same as that of TEPCO at Fukushima I Nuclear Power Plant: fences and sandbags as safeguard.

Naraha-machi wants to boot out Fuku-I workers from J-Village which serves as the staging area for the work in Fukushima I Nuclear Power Plant so that J-Village is restored as the training facility for soccer teams. Naraha-machi Mayor wants Fukushima II Nuclear Power Plant to restart, so that his town could help the recovery of other municipalities in the no-entry zone. Mayor Kusano also wanted to build the final disposal site for highly radioactive waste from the nuclear fuel reprocessing in Rokkasho.

Municipalities that has the no-entry zone inside their cities and towns are: Minami Soma City, Namie-machi, Okuma-machi, Futaba-machi, Tomioka-machi, Naraha-machi, Kawauchi-mura, Hirono-machi, Katsuragi-mura, Tamura City.

While the concentric circles on which the Kan administration based their evacuation decision didn’t make sense, it is also true that the most severe contamination fell on the area inside the 20-kilometer radius no-entry zone and the planned evacuation zone in Iitate-mura and Namie-machi. Naraha-machi fared better than most, if the MEXT map is to be believed.

From the Ministry of Education and Science (MEXT) map on May 6, 2011, cesium deposition (in Bq/square meters):

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