Japan nuclear plant moves radioactive water

By the Associated Press | June 5, 2011 | 3:13 AM EDT

In this May 27, 2011 photo released on June 2, 2011 by Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO), temporary storage tanks for low-level radioactive polluted waters used for temporary cooling system in Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant in Okuma, Fukushima prefecture, northeastern Japan, are shown. The nuclear facility was crippled when a huge tsunami generated by a magnitude 9.0 earthquake hit Japan on March 11. It suffered explosions, fires and meltdowns in the days after the tsunami. (AP Photo/Tokyo Electric Power Co.) EDITORIAL USE ONLY

TOKYO (AP) — The Japanese utility battling to bring its radiation-spewing nuclear reactor under control says it is moving 1,500 more tons of radioactive water into temporary storage.

Tokyo Electric Power Co. said Sunday that the move is critical to prevent the spilling of highly radioactive water into the ground and the sea.

More than 100,000 tons of radioactive water have pooled beneath the troubled Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant in northeastern Japan. TEPCO has said the water could start overflowing about June 20 — or possibly sooner with heavy rainfall.

The cores of three of the plant's reactors melted and sunk to the bottom of the units after the March 11 tsunami destroyed backup generators, damaging crucial cooling systems.