High levels of radiation in Tokyo ash

AFP July 12, 2011, 4:37 pm

TOKYO (AFP) – Japanese waste incineration plants near Tokyo have found high levels of radiation in ash, and officials said Tuesday it may be from garden waste contaminated by the Fukushima nuclear disaster.

The radioactive caesium was detected in plants in Kashiwa city in Chiba , of Tokyo and about 200 kilometres (120 miles) from the plant that has leaked radiation since the March 11 quake and tsunami.

Officials stressed that the radioactive ash collected in late June and early July, at concentrations of up to 70,800 becquerels per kilogramme, was safely contained within the plant and posed no health risk to the community.

The level is far higher than the government’s 8,000-becquerel per kilogramme limit, above which waste dumps must keep such ash in storage, and it presents authorities with the question of what to do with it.

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