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TOKYO - The operator of the crippled nuclear power plant leaking radiation in northern Japan announced a plan Sunday to bring the crisis under control within six to nine months and allow some evacuated residents to return to their homes."We sincerely apologize for causing troubles," Katsumata said. "We are doing our utmost to prevent the crisis from further worsening."
Prime Minister Naoto Kan, facing pressure both at home and abroad to resolve Japan's worst-ever nuclear power accident, directed Tokyo Electric Power Co. to draw up the plan."Given the conditions now, this is best that it could do," said Hidehiko Nishiyama of the government's Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency. "But it cannot be said that the reactor has stabilized."
"We sincerely apologize for causing troubles," Katsumata said. "We are doing our utmost to prevent the crisis from further worsening."The company is focusing first on cooling the reactors and spent fuel pools and reducing the level of leaking radiation, decontaminating water that has become radioactive, reducing the amount of radiation released into the atmosphere and soil, and lowering radiation levels in the evacuation area, he said.
Evacuees who have been forced to abandon their homes, jobs and in many cases their farms were unconvinced by TEPCO's plan.
"I don't believe a word they say," said Yukio Otsuka, 56, a private school owner whose home is about 3 miles from the facility.
Trade Minister Banri Kaieda said some evacuees might be able to return home within six to nine months. He urged TEPCO to beat that deadline, though it is clear the full cleanup will take years.
Officials reported late Saturday that radioactivity had again risen sharply in seawater near the plant, signaling the possibility of new leaks. Authorities have insisted the radioactivity will dissipate in the ocean and poses no immediate threat to sea creatures or people who might eat them. Most experts agree.Regardless, plant workers began dumping into the sea sandbags filled with sand and zeolite, a mineral that absorbs radioactive cesium, over the weekend to reduce radiation levels
In a show of support for a staunch American ally, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton expressed admiration and sympathy for the Japanese as she visited Tokyo on Sunday."We pledge our steadfast support for you and your future recovery. We are very confident that Japan will demonstrate the resilience that we have seen during this crisis in the months ahead," Clinton said.
I've been estimating 6 months since about March 17th.
Originally posted by gdaub23
I was checking up on somnews on Japan ad just came cross this...6-9 months? why so long? thats alot more of the bad radition being released for a very long extended peiod of time...i had no idea that it wouldtake this long