Risk of “disturbing the crust” around Fukushima reactors from plan to reduce groundwater flowing under plant – Nuclear Officials: Land could start ‘sinking’ – WSJ: Changing water route may cause highly contaminated leak

Risk of “disturbing the crust” around Fukushima reactors from plan to reduce groundwater flowing under plant — Nuclear Officials: Land could start ‘sinking’ — WSJ: Changing water route may cause highly contaminated leak (ENENews, May 21, 2014):

Wall St. Journal, May 16, 2014: The ice-wall plan has already met a hurdle. […] the Nuclear Regulation Authority […] expressed concern about an unexpected change in the water route, which could cause a leak of highly contaminated water.

Asahi, May 17, 2014: “Once the project is started, it will be difficult to turn back,” said Toyoshi Fuketa, an NRA commissioner who is screening [the ice wall project,] “We have to thoroughly examine every aspect of this project because it is such a drastic measure.” […] Experts have warned that if something goes wrong with the walls, it could critically affect work to handle the contaminated water and decommissioning operations. […] The NRA told the utility to provide answers to 24 items that the watchdog is concerned about, such as the possibility of land sinking, leaks of contaminated water and countermeasures in the event the frozen soil thaws.

Mainichi, May 17, 2014: […] experts have questioned both the safety and effectiveness of the proposed subterranean ice wall. […] the NRA submitted 24 questions on the safety and effectiveness of the ice wall plan to TEPCO and the national government, and it now looks like the operation — scheduled to commence in June — will be delayed. […] The plan, however, could fail, and there is a further risk that the excavation work could disturb the crust around the reactors.

AP, May 4, 2014: Toyoshi Fuketa, a commissioner with the Nuclear Regulation Authority, said the hydrological impact of creating a frozen wall in the area was unclear. “We need to know if a frozen wall is really effective, and more importantly, we need to know whether a frozen wall may cause any trouble,” Fuketa said. International experts have raised similar concerns.

See also Top Nuclear Official: “Ground sinking” beneath Fukushima reactor buildings a concern — Gov’t experts looking closely at risks from changes to flow of underground water

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