Environment

Surge in Radiation From Leaks at Fukushima Nuclear Plant

Fresh leaks of highly radioactive water have been detected at Japan’s crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant four years after a massive tsunami disaster resulted in explosions and meltdowns at the facility.

Sensors detected contamination levels up to 70 times greater than the already high levels of radioactive cesium and strontium-90.

Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) says the leaks came from gutters that sent accumulated rainwater on top of the highly contaminated facility into a drainage ditch that carries runoff to the Pacific.

The company concedes it has known about the leak since last April, but failed to disclose the finding.

A spokesman said workers have blocked the gutters from sending any more roof runoff into the ocean.

The company is also plagued by a flow of groundwater from mountains to the west, which becomes contaminated as it passes beneath the plant and into the Pacific.

Efforts to freeze the ground with refrigeration equipment and halt that flow are underway, but are being met with great public skepticism.

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