Tuesday 13th June 2023

Prime Minister Hon. James Marape during a recent conference.(DICT file picture)

Prime Minister Hon. James Marape has reaffirmed the capacity of Japan in upholding international standards while it rehabilitates radioactive wastewater from its destroyed Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant.

Prime Minister Marape said he had faith in former prime minister Yoshihide Suga and current Prime Minister Hon. Fumio Kishida as both leaders have given their assurance that Japan was doing everything in its power to maximise the safety of the wastewater and would not allow its release until safety has been confirmed based on scientific evidence.

“Japan has been working on the handling of ALPS-treated water with its safety as the top priority. I have been advised by both leaders that the release of the water is being conducted in accordance with all standards – both domestic and international – to comply with the highest safety regulations for human health and the health of the environment.

“Both leaders have assured me that Japan would never allow the discharge of the water until and unless safety has been confirmed by scientific evidence.

Japan continues to treat the wastewater for over the last 10-or-so years since the Fukushima nuclear plant disaster in March 2011.

Mr Marape said it is best that the treated water is released in a controlled manner than if the radioactive wastewater is left to accidental leakage or other such unplanned exercise.

He is also pleased the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has been working with the Government of Japan to rigorously review the safety of the wastewater for release.

“For us in the Pacific, our position is the same as it always has been – a Free Nuclear-Waste Pacific.

“Papua New Guinea is of the view that Japan – with its high compliance to international standards and regulations – is meeting the requirements in managing nuclear waste, and is at the point where, if it is confident it can safely release the treated water back into the natural environment, it should be allowed to do so,” said Prime Minister Marape.

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