The manager of the Fukushima nuclear power plant admits to embarrassment that repeated efforts have failed to bring under control the problem of radioactive water, eight months after Japan's prime minister told the world the matter was resolved.
Tokyo Electric Power Co, the plant's operator, has been fighting a daily battle against contaminated water since Fukushima was wrecked by a March 2011 earthquake and tsunami.
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's government pledged half a billion dollars last year to tackle the issue, but progress has been limited.
"It's embarrassing to admit, but there are certain parts of the site where we don't have full control," Akira Ono told reporters touring the plant this week.
He was referring to the latest blunder at the plant: channeling contaminated water to the wrong building.
Ono also acknowledged that many difficulties may have been rooted in Tepco's focus on speed since the 2011 disaster.
"It may sound odd, but this is the bill we have to pay for what we have done in the past three years," he said.