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UK nuclear experts to help decommision Fukushima

Government officials and nuclear experts inspecting a construction site at Fukushima in August Photo: AFP/GETTY IMAGES

British nuclear experts are being lined up to help decommission the damaged Fukushima power plant in a move that could reboot Japan’s atomic power capabilities.

Lady Judge, the British-American nuclear expert and adviser at Fukushima, is organising for engineers from Sellafield in Cumbria to travel to Japan to advise on decontaminating and shutting down the stricken site.

“At Sellafield and Dounreay we are decommissioning big power plants and we can provide a very good example to the Japanese of how to do it safely,” said Lady Judge in an interview with The Telegraph. “I’ve been talking to Sellafield about sending some engineers to help.”

The Tokyo Electric Power Company (Tepco), which owns the Fukushima plants, is planning to launch a new subsidiary for decommissioning and decontamination on April 1. The division is expected to be headed by a Japanese nuclear expert who is expected to be advised by British engineers.

On Friday, Sellafield ordered all non-essential staff to stay at home after elevated readings of radiation were detected on site. Later officials at Sellafield – the site of Britain’s worst nuclear accident in 1957 – said naturally occurring radioactive gas that comes from rocks and soil, had triggered the alarm.


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