11 Years On: Fisheries Executive Concerned about Radioactive Water Release

Economy

Tokyo, March 2 (Jiji Press)--Japan's plan to release into the sea treated radioactive water from the crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant would delay the removal of food import restrictions by overseas economies, Japanese fisheries industry executive Kazuhiko Utsumi said in a recent interview.

There is a great deal of concern, especially among fishermen, that the water release will further damage reputations of food produced in Fukushima Prefecture, said Utsumi, executive director of the Japan Fisheries Association, which comprises groups of fishermen, distributors and processors.

The Japanese government plans to start releasing the water around spring next year. The water contains radioactive tritium from the nuclear plant crippled by the March 11, 2011, earthquake and tsunami.

"Even in Japan, some people think that Fukushima food is bad for health," Utsumi said, adding that 14 economies, including China, still have restrictions in place on food imports from Fukushima and other areas in the Tohoku northeastern Japan region.

The water release cannot be accepted from the standpoint of a person involved in the fishery industry, at the time when the reputational damage has not subsided, Utsumi said.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press