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Fukushima to discharge tons of sewage into sea; It can destroy even DNA Greenpeace Warns


Fukushima: Greenpeace, an environmental group, has protested against the decision to dump sewage water from Japan's Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant into the sea. Greenpeace also warned that radioactive carbon in the contaminated water have potential to destroy human DNA.

The Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant has stored 1.23 million metric tons of water since 2011. It is said to be dangerous and contains carbon 14, a radioactive isotope, and other "hazardous" radionuclides, which it says will have "serious long-term consequences for communities and the environment" if the water is released into the Pacific Ocean. The group said the floodwaters could have repercussions for the environment and humans in the future.

Japan has been thinking for years about what to do with the tons of water used to cool the fuel cores of nuclear power plant. In a final decision, officials and the country's environment ministry said the water could flow into the Pacific Ocean. Subsequently, environmental activists in the fisheries sector also came out in protest.

"Any radioactive discharge carries some environmental and health risk," Francis Livens, a professor of radiochemistry at the University of Manchester told CNN, adding that the risk would be relative to how much carbon 14 would be released into the ocean. "An awful lot really does depend on how much is going to be discharged."

"If it's (carbon-14) there and it's there in quantity, yes, there probably is a risk associated with it," Livens, who is not associated with the Greenpeace study, said. "People have discharged carbon-14 into the sea over many years. It all comes down to how much is there, how much is dispersed, does it enter marine food chains and find its way back to people?"

According to government sources, the water will be discharged into the sea after most of the isotopes are removed. But Greenpeace said the tritium isotope could not be removed and that the wastewater contained dangerous levels of carbon 14.

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