Members of the Liberal Democratic Party, the ruling party in Japan, are discussing the establishment of new credentials for workers who clean up radioactive debris or decommission nuclear power plants.
The discussions revolve around the establishment of three levels of national certifications which focus on three areas, decontamination, reactor maintenance, and radiation monitoring.
Officials say that it is important to raise the skill of nuclear industry employees as this will not only help improve overall safety but also to help reduce worker exposures at nuclear power facilities.
Japan currently only has one state license for workers in the nuclear power industry which is focused on managing nuclear reactor operations.
There is a great need for skilled workers to help decontaminate areas of Fukushima Prefecture as the work has fallen behind schedule. Almost 270,000 residents of Fukushima Prefecture lost their homes or were forced to evacuate due to radiation levels and are still unable to return to their homes.
There will also be a great demand for experienced workers to help decommission Japan’s aging nuclear reactors. It is estimated that it will take at least 40 years to complete decommissioning of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant.