A Response to Japan’s Fukushima Radioactive Water Dump
With Japan announcing on April 13, 2021, they will be releasing 1.25 tons of toxic waste from the Fukushima Daiichi Disaster into the ocean because this is “the only option,” Japan's leaders got lots of backlash. Although it sounds bad, there needs to be an understanding as to why this is the best option.
Japan’s Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga stated, “Releasing the treated water into the sea is a realistic solution...We will do our utmost to keep the water far above safety standards.” The plan is to dilute the waste before dropping it into the ocean in order to reduce harm. Naturally, this is the best way to handle the waste. The most abundant chemical in the water is tritium, which is the least radioactive and harmful of all the elements. With the rest of the chemicals being removed, dumping this water into the ocean would not be a threat to the health of the ocean. Tritium has never caused any harm to humans or the environment, so, over a decade or so, dumping it into the ocean will not be a problem. If the waste is contained and stored, that's when it could be an issue, but if it is released, it will be much less harmful. There are so few risks that our first layer of skin protects us from tritium and there is no need for health codes on it.
But what about marine life? They are swimming in numerous toxins, much more harmful than tritium ever will be, so this will not affect them at all. The fish caught will not be toxic or dangerous to eat, and there is no reason to worry.
The idea sounds horrible when it hits the ear, but these are the facts. Tritium will not harm and the oceans and life will not be at risk if this waste is dumped, especially over a period of years.