Japan spends $470M to contain reactor leaks

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Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has waded deep into the effort to deal with the aftermath of the world’s worst nuclear accident in a quarter century.

His government said Tuesday it would spend the equivalent of $470 million to try to tackle the alarming toxic water crisis at the country’s tsunami-crippled nuclear power plant.

National authorities are stepping in as Tokyo Electric Power Company struggles to cope with an array of daunting problems at its stricken Fukushima Daiichi plant.

The move is a gamble for Abe, who comfortably won elections last year and has so far remained popular.

“Today, instead of the previous stopgap countermeasures, we have put together a basic policy for countering the contaminated water issue,” Abe said after a ministerial meeting Tuesday.

TEPCO has accumulated a huge volume of tainted water at the site since a massive earthquake and tsunami in 2011 set off meltdowns at three of the plant’s reactors.

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