Amount of radiation at Japan plant might exceed Chernobyl
The amount of radiation leaking from a damaged Japanese nuclear power station might exceed that of the Chernobyl disaster, Tokyo Electric Power Co (TEPCO), the plant's operator, said Tuesday.
If the plant continued to spew radioactive material, it would be possible that the amount might surpass that of the 1986 disaster in Ukraine, TEPCO official Junichi Matsumoto said, dpa reported.
At the moment, however, the radiation releases are at 10 per cent of the levels emitted from the Chernobyl plant, the government's Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency said.
The agency on Tuesday raised the accident level at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station to 7, the worst on an international scale, from the current 5.
Level 7 had only been applied previously to the Chernobyl disaster.
The accident level was raised after the agency determined that the Fukushima plant has been releasing massive amounts of radioactive materials, which are posing threats to human health and the environment over a wide area, the public broadcaster NHK reported.