Fukushima radiation monitoring posts to be renewed

Japan's nuclear regulators plan to retain radiation monitoring posts in Fukushima Prefecture by replacing old equipment with new.

About 3,000 monitoring posts were set up at schools and other locations across the prefecture following the March 2011 accident at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant.

The annual test and maintenance cost of the equipment is around 5.5 million dollars.

The Nuclear Regulation Authority decided in 2018 to remove about 80 percent of the monitoring posts, saying that radiation levels had remained low and the posts would likely reach their lifespan of about eight years.

But the authority reversed its decision after it met opposition from local residents.

It decided instead to retain the monitoring posts for the time being to ease local people's concern about radiation levels and their health.

The authority plans to replace parts in radiation detectors and power supply sources with new ones in the next 10 years. About 300 posts will be renewed annually.

Some 450 monitoring posts containing parts that are hard to obtain will be replaced entirely.

The prefectural government of Fukushima says it wants the authority to continue to measure radiation levels.