The mission had been slated to come to Japan in December 2021, but the visit was postponed due to strict entry requirements for non-Japanese owing to the spread of the Omicron variant of COVID-19. It will be the first visit by an IAEA review mission in regard to the offshore release of ALPS-treated water.

In addition to IAEA officials, 11 international experts will also participate, including those from South Korea and China, both of which have shown concerns over the offshore release. They will exchange views and opinions with related parties from TEPCO, the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI), the Secretariat of the Nuclear Regulation Authority (NRA) of Japan, and more.

On February 15, the mission will also visit the Fukushima Daiichi NPPs, and review preparations made by TEPCO in anticipation of the release of treated water in the spring of 2023. The IAEA expects to compile an interim report by the end of the year.