China says Fukushima discharge plan 'extremely irresponsible'

It's extremely irresponsible for the Japanese government to insist on releasing more than 1.3 million tonnes of nuclear-contaminated water from the Fukushima nuclear plant into the sea, a Chinese envoy said on Tuesday.

Noting the ocean is an important part of the Earth's water ecosystem, Dai Bing, China's deputy permanent representative to the United Nations, said it's deeply worrying that the Japanese government ignores the concerns of the international community and the opposition of the Pacific coast and island countries and continues its Fukushima discharge plan, at a meeting about water sustainable development goals at UN High-Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development.

Dai added the Japanese government's Fukushima discharge plan will seriously endanger the global marine environment and ecosystems and also the lives and health of people in all countries.

The international community should take the issue seriously and urge the Japanese side to face up to the legitimate and reasonable concerns of all parties, stop the plan of discharging nuclear-contaminated water into the sea, dispose of the nuclear-contaminated water in a scientific, safe and transparent manner and accept strict international supervision, said the Chinese envoy.

As an active player in global water resources cooperation, China will enhance cooperation with other countries and international organizations on water resources protection and sustainable usage, Dai said. 

(Cover: Local protesters and South Korean lawmakers hold banners against Japanese government's plan to release treated wastewater from the damaged Fukushima nuclear power plant, during a rally in Tokyo, Japan, July 10, 2023. /CFP)

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