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Tent-Like Structure Being Erected at Japan’s Fukushima Nuclear Plant
August 12, 2011
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It's been 5 months since Japan was hit by that devastating earthquake and tsunami. Of course, in the days and weeks after the disaster, there were serious concerns about a meltdown at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant. Well, things are more stable now, but the threat isn't over. Radiation is still a big problem, so officials have a new plan to try to contain it. They're building a large tent-like structure over one of the plant's worst hit reactors.

The tent is made from steel frames and air-tight polyester sheets, and it's designed to stop radioactive leaks and prevent rainwater from entering the reactor. Once the reactor's new covering is installed, the same measures will be considered for two other reactors. The work couldn't begin until now because the area was too dangerous.

Meanwhile, schools near the plant in Fukushima City are starting to clear radioactive dirt from their grounds before students return in the fall, but they're having trouble determining where to dump it. As well, city officials have been distributing radiation meters to 34,000 school kids.

On top of all that, farmers are concerned their rice crops could be banned due to radioactive contamination. Early tests look promising - the first five of 49 preliminary tests didn't detect any radiation - but if other tests reveal unsafe food, it could hurt the Japanese economy.

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