UN urges Japan to investigate damaged Fukushima nuclear reactors for clean-up

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A team of United Nations experts is urging Japan to investigate nuclear reactors damaged a decade ago by a massive earthquake and tsunami.

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Scientists working for the International Atomic Energy Agency reviewing the progress of the Fukushima plant’s clean-up say that Japan has been slow to examine the melted fuel inside the reactors.

And they’re worried that the country will be unable to meet a 2051 target to clean up the mess, according to a report.

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"We need to gather more information on the fuel debris and more experience on the retrieval of the fuel debris to know if the plan can be completed as expected in the next 30 years," said Christophe Xerri, head of IAEA, at a press conference after he and a colleague submitted a report on their recent findings to the Japanese government Friday.

A massive earthquake and a tsunami in March 2011 destroyed cooling systems at the Fukushima plant in northeastern Japan, triggering meltdowns in three reactors in the worst nuclear disaster since the 1986 Chernobyl accident, according to the Associated Press.

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Japanese officials said that they hope to finish the decommissioning process within the next 30 years, although many experts believe that the timetable is optimistic.

Japanese government officials and the plant operator, Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings, have not provided any clarity as to how the plant will look when the cleanup ends.

To read more from the New York Post, click here.

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