October 24, 2014
Residents delay search for radioactive waste site
Oct. 24, 2014 - Updated 11:02 UTC+2
Japan's Environment Ministry has suspended inspections of 3 sites under consideration for a radioactive waste disposal facility due to local opposition at 1 of the locations.
The ministry planned to start field surveys on Friday at 3 state-owned sites in Miyagi Prefecture to find a place for a permanent storage facility for contaminated waste stemming from the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear accident.
But about 40 opponents of the survey in the town of Kami, including Mayor Hirobumi Inomata, were waiting for ministry officials at the site.
Inomata asked them to stop the survey, saying that State Minister Yasuhiro Ozato had earlier said he took the request seriously.
The officials called off the survey for the day.
Officials at the 2 other sites under consideration also called off planned surveys Friday morning. Those other sites are in the city of Kurihara and town of Taiwa.
A senior official at the ministry's Tohoku regional office said current circumstances make it difficult to go ahead with the surveys. He added he will consult with the ministry about what to do.