16-meter seawall planned for Fukushima Daiichi

The operator of the damaged nuclear power plant in Fukushima, northeastern Japan, plans to build a taller seawall to help protect against future high seismic sea waves.

The move comes in response to the projection made in April by a government panel on the scale of tsunami that could be triggered by a massive quake along the Japan Trench in the deep sea off northeastern Japan.

The Tokyo Electric Power Company, or TEPCO, analyzed the projection and found that waves as high as 14.1 meters could engulf the Fukushima Daiichi plant compound, where the No.1 to No.4 reactors are located. It also found that waves of up to 15.3 meters high could hit south of the No. 4 reactor.

An 11-meter seawall is under construction on the ocean side of the plant compound. In an area south of the No. 4 reactor, another sea wall that is 12.8 meters high has already been completed.

TEPCO officials on Monday agreed to build another seawall measuring up to 16 meters high to protect these areas. They say they want to complete the work before the end of March 2024.

The wall is one of the anti-tsunami measures being taken by TEPCO as it decommissions the plant.

Work is under way to block the openings of the reactor buildings. Power supply vehicles are also deployed on higher ground to continue cooling spent nuclear fuel.

Nearly 1,000 tanks of radioactive wastewater are stored in the compound. TEPCO says the projected tsunami won't reach the higher ground where these tanks are located.