The 2023 budget allocated for dealing with the contaminated wastewater from Japan's Fukushima nuclear power plant has been cut by 13 percent, compared to this year's allotment, data showed Tuesday.
According to Rep. Kim Young-joo of the main opposition Democratic Party of Korea, the government has earmarked 2.6 billion won ($1.8 million) for the project, compared to 3 billion won for this year.
The Nuclear Safety and Security Commission had initially requested 3.8 billion won, but it was reduced by more than 30 percent.
The commission also requested 1.2 billion won for radioactive measuring equipment, but that was cut by more than half to 600 million won.
"The Yoon Suk-yeol administration's drastic cut in the budget for responding to Fukushima’s contaminated water revealed their complacent attitude toward the matter of protecting life and safety of our people," Kim said. "We will make all efforts to restrain the release of radioactive wastewater.”
The Japanese government on Aug. 22 approved the release of radioactive water from the Fukushima power plant. A discharge facility is being constructed for the planned release from June next year.