Officials estimate that 400 tons of radioactive groundwater are now flowing into the Pacific each day. That’s in addition to any runoff of water from rain on the surface.
The level of radiation in a drainage ditch at the facility has also risen exponentially, according to the plant’s operator, the Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO).
Water contaminated with radioactive materials flowed into the ditch when Typhoon Wipha hit the area on Oct. 2.
TEPCO says much of the water evaporated, leading to the surge in the density of beta particle-emitting materials in the remaining water.
The nuclear complex suffered meltdowns and hydrogen explosions following a devastating earthquake and tsunami in March 2011.
TEPCO and Japan’s nuclear regulatory agency has been unable to keep the resulting nuclear disaster from cascading out of control in recent months.
Officials say they are now looking for help from abroad on how best to scrap the ruined reactors at Fukushima Daiichi.
“We will set up a website in both Japanese and English to notify interested parties at home and abroad of our calls for decommissioning ideas so that we can offer more useful and practical proposals to the government,” the official said.
The process of decommissioning the reactors is expected to take decades.