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The aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan arrives at Yokosuka Naval Base, Japan, Oct. 1, 2015. The nuclear-powered carrier was the focus of a radiation-leak disaster exercise between the U.S. Navy and Japanese government this week in Yokosuka.

The aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan arrives at Yokosuka Naval Base, Japan, Oct. 1, 2015. The nuclear-powered carrier was the focus of a radiation-leak disaster exercise between the U.S. Navy and Japanese government this week in Yokosuka. (Kevin V. Cunningham/U.S. Navy)

YOKOTA AIR BASE, Japan — The nuclear-powered aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan was at the center of a radiation-leak disaster exercise between the U.S. Navy and Japanese government this week in Yokosuka, Japan.

The exercise simulated the leakage of a small amount of radioactive cooling water from the carrier, Japanese broadcaster NHK reported Wednesday. Officials rehearsed information-sharing methods — in which the Navy communicates radiation levels to Yokosuka City Hall, which then releases those figures to the public — in case such an incident occurs.

Last month, Japan revised regulations for ordering residents to evacuate in the event a nuclear-powered aircraft carrier leaks radiation, the report said. A threshold of 100 microsieverts — the unit measurement for a dose of radiation — released per hour was changed to 5 microsieverts. The average person safely absorbs about 3.65 millisieverts of radiation annually, according to a PBS report.

Nuclear power has been a controversial topic in Japan since a devastating earthquake and tsunami triggered the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant meltdown in 2011. A March 2014 poll conducted by the Asahi Shimbun showed that 59 percent of Japanese opposed restarting nuclear reactors that were shut down after the meltdown; 77 percent said they would support a plan to phase out nuclear energy. Two plants went back online earlier this year.

news@stripes.com

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