Thank you all for visiting, reading and sharing the news with me on the Fukushima Appeal Blog. I’ve kept it running since February 2012. Unfortunately, I will need some break now to attend to some of my health issues.
I would like to thank this blog and its supporters for giving me an opportunity to become a part of the slowly awakening global community during this very important time of global change. I had zero knowledge of nuclear before the Fukushima disaster, and was and still am a just normal citizen. It’s been hard to see Japan becoming a criminal, immoral and authoritarian country since the Fukushima Disaster. So it’s been a huge awakening and healing process to have a platform to speak out instead of feeling powerless, angry and sad about it. With the new secret law that is going to be introduced in Japan soon, Japanese people will need more help than at any other time in its history from foreign bloggers, doctors and scientists. Please remember Fukushima. I hope that the more difficulties we may encounter, the stronger and connected we will become to fight against injustice and be able to act from our heart space. (Mia)
日本の皆さん、がんばってください。 再稼動反対、子供を守れ！ １ｍＳｖ／ｙの約束を守れ！
For more Fukushima update go to: www.nuclear-news.net, http://fukushima-diary.com/, https://www.facebook.com/fukushima311watchdog, http://enenews.com/, http://www.fukuleaks.org/web/, http://www.nuclearhotseat.com/ http://ex-skf.blogspot.co.uk/
Petition: Support Mari Takenouchi and Radiation Protection
日 本の皆様へ、個人的な感情面から、竹ノ内真理さんのことを批判したい方は、すでにそうしたのだから、これからは、その時間とエネルギーをエートス批判に向 けるべきではないでしょうか？ そしてボランテイアで、海外に向けて、英語発信する真理さんは、海外の情報源にとって、貴重な存在だと思います。 (Mia)
Urgent Petition: ttp://www.change.org/en-GB/petitions/ask-japanese-government-promise-for-necessary-aid-for-children-who-are-still-exposed-radiation-more-than-1msv-year-3
“I hope that every child in Japan is given comprehensive thyroid blood testing including at the minimum TSH, Free T4, Free T3 and thyroid antibodies. Their thyroid function should be regularly tested on an ongoing basis. “ By Dana Trentini http://fukushimaappeal.blogspot.co.uk/2013/11/thyroid-testing-for-japanese-children.html
*latest Fukushima Thyroid examination results released on Nov 12. (Complete English translation) (Source) http://fukushimavoice-eng2.blogspot.co.uk/2013/11/thirteenth-prefectural-oversight.html
National Parents Network to Protect Children from Radiation
*Fuel Removal From Fukushima's Reactor 4 Threatens 'Apocalyptic' Scenario In November, TEPCO set to begin to remove fuel rods whose radiation matches the fallout of 14,000 Hiroshima bombs
*Kashiwazaki Nuclear Plant: Fukushima Governor stands in the way to stop restarting! 柏崎原発：再稼動させないよう立ちはだかる新潟県知事泉田氏 http://fukushimaappeal.blogspot.co.uk/2013/11/kashiwazaki-nuclear-plant-fukushima.html
*Statement: Japanese civil society requests that the reports of the United Nations Scientific Committee on Fukushima be revised 日本の６４の市民団体が福島事故に関しての国連科学の報告内容を改訂するよう要請 www.http://hrn.or.jp/eng/a tivity/area/worldwide/japanese-civil-society-requests-that-the-reports-of-the-united-nations-scientific-committee-on-fukus/
Anand Grover, Esq., UN Special Rapporteur on the right to health, criticizes UNSCEAR report on Fukushima -10/24/2013 (1 of 4)国連「健康に対する権利」の特別報告者のアナンド・グローバー氏: 国連科学の報告を批判 Video - http://vimeo.com/78483070 October 24, 2013 (NYC, NY)
*Medical experts criticize UNSCEAR report for playing down consequences of Fukushima nuclear accident ドイツの専門家が国連科学の報告書を、｢福島事故の影響を過小評価している｣と批判! http://www.save-children-from-radiation.org/2013/11/05/medical-experts-criticize-unscear-report-for-playing-down-consequences-of-fukushima-nuclear-accident/
*Frightening Report from the UNSCEAR (The United nations Scientific Committee on the Effects of Atomic Radiation ＵＮSCEAR-国連科学委員会による、恐るべき報告。http://fukushimaappeal.blogspot.co.uk/2013/05/frightening-report-from-unsear-united.html
*Heavily Criticized Recent WHO Report on Health Risk Assessment from the Fukushima Disaster 厳しく批判された最近の福島事故による健康被害についてのＷＨＯ報告 http://fukushimaappeal.blogspot.co.uk/2013/03/who-report-on-health-risk-assessment.html
*UN Report – Japanese Delegation to The UN Spreads Lies and Deception! 国連報告書２０１３年４月 国連への日本政府代表団のうそとごまかし！ 抗議締め切り5月17日！ http://fukushimaappeal.blogspot.co.uk/2013/05/un-report-japanese-delegation-to-un.html
*まとめ：国連報告書２０１３年４月 国連への日本政府代表団のうそとごまかし！ 抗議締め切り5月17日！http://fukushimaappeal.blogspot.co.uk/2013/05/un-report-japanese-delegation-to-un.html
*A letter to all young athletes who dream of coming to Tokyo in 2020 東京オリンピックを目指している若い選手の方々へ Some Facts You Should Know About Fukushima 0.086Bq/kg was normal amount of ionizing radiation in fish before the Fukushima accident. Now it is 100Bq/kg 1160times more radioactive. http://fukushimaappeal.blogspot.co.uk/2013/10/a-letter-to-all-young-athletes-who.html
Fukushima Petitions ☢ Please Sign and Share! Japan needs Worldwide Help NOW! Stop Fukushima Radiation – UN Action Needed
Mobilize the U.N. Security Council to declare Fukushima a global emergency;
*Tokyo radiation is worse than Gomel - Mika Noro’s speech on the impact of radiation in Japan http://fukushimaappeal.blogspot.co.uk/2013/07/tokyo-radiation-is-worse-than-gomel.html
*Police arrest animal rescuers inside Fukushima evacuation zone — “They cannot be contacted and are being charged with crimes” http://fukushimaappeal.blogspot.co.uk/2013/02/police-arrest-animal-rescuers-inside.html
Resistance posted by Ian Thomas Ash, a director of Fukushima Documantary Film "A2-B-C"
… As one does not train with weight that is too light,….. And as I write this, I realize something for the first time: the more I embrace the resistance, the more I am becoming it. http://ianthomasash.blogspot.jp/2013/11/resistance.html
*Fukushima Farmers negotiate with Japanese Government/Tepco 福島農家の若者、政府と東電に対して勇気ある発言 http://fukushimaappeal.blogspot.co.uk/2013/09/fukushima-farmers-negotiate-with.html The current government limit is 100Bq/kg... 0.1Bq/kg for cesium in rice before the Fukushima disaster. … We feel guilty about growing it and selling it...
*Atomic bombs survivors received fair compensation, not so in Fukushima!
The Japanese Gov recognizes radiation related illnesses! http://fukushimaappeal.blogspot.co.uk/2013/05/atomic-bombs-survivors-received-fair.html
Thursday, 31 October 2013
Fukushima: Leaking problems to cover up something unusual at reactor 1 and 3 おしどりマコ氏「汚染水のタンク漏えいは1号機と3号機のがれき撤去を隠すための目くらましだ」と発言
Wednesday, 30 October 2013
Just How Tough Is It to Find Workers to Clean Up the Fukushima Reactor? 福島原発：クリーンナップ労働者の数を確保することの難しさ
“We are not sure about our long-term staffing situation during the upcoming process of debris removal, which requires different skills,” Tokyo Electric Power (Tepco) vice president Zengo Aizawa told reporters. Aizawa had been called on the carpet earlier in the day to answer for what Nuclear Regulation Authority chairman Shunichi Tanaka called “silly mistakes,” caused by declining worker morale.
Tepco president Naomi Hirose admitted to the difficulties in recruitment, but assured Tanaka that more staff would be sent from other sites to assist in the Fukushima plant’s decommissioning. Shifting staff is a short-term measure, which leaves the future of the long-term site remediation up in the air as long as the company continues to have trouble recruiting capable workers.
It’s not for lack of trying.
In the months following the accident, Tepco claimed to have secured 24,000 workers, but some 16,000 quit within months due to harsh working conditions and the fear of dangerous radiation levels. Japan’s elderly tried to step up in hopes of saving younger workers with decades of life ahead of them, but finding skilled labor continues to be a challenge. A web of labor brokers and subcontractors have given rise to pay skimming, corruption, and ties to organized crime, according to a Reuters investigation.
In past months, Tepco officials denied that there was any shortage of workers, but today’s admissions could mark a change, as Tanaka has never before challenged Tepco officials so directly. He urged Hirose to take “drastic steps” to solve the labor issues and put a stop to the spate of accidents and leaks.
Remediating the site is expected to cost $150 billion over the next 30 years, with at least 12,000 workers needed just to take the project through 2015. There are currently just over 8,000.
Critics see parallels between the new law and Abe's drive to revise Japan's U.S.-drafted, post-war constitution to stress citizen's duties over civil rights, part of a conservative agenda that includes a stronger military and recasting Japan's wartime history with a less apologetic tone.
"There is a demand by the established political forces for greater control over the people," said Lawrence Repeta, a law professor at Meiji University. "This fits with the notion that the state should have broad authority to act in secret."
Abe says the new law, a draft of which was approved by his cabinet on Friday and should be passed by parliament in the current session, is vital to his plan to set up a U.S.-style National Security Council to oversee security policies and coordinate among ministries.
Outside Abe's official residence, several dozen protesters gathered in the rain in a last-minute appeal against the move.
"Basically, this bill raises the possibility that the kind of information about which the public should be informed is kept secret eternally," Tadaaki Muto, a lawyer and member of a task force on the bill at the Japan Federation of Bar Associations, told Reuters.
"Under the bill, the administrative branch can set the range of information that is kept secret at its own discretion."
Media watchdogs fear the law would seriously hobble journalists' ability to investigate official misdeeds and blunders, including the collusion between regulators and utilities that led to the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster.
A probe by an independent parliamentary panel found that collusion between regulators and the nuclear power industry was a key factor in the failure to prevent the meltdowns at Tokyo Electric Power Co's (Tepco) tsunami-hit Fukushima plant in March 2011, and the government and the utility remain the focus of criticism for their handling of the on-going crisis.
Tepco has often been accused of concealing information about the crisis and many details have first emerged in the press. In July, Tepco finally admitted to massive leaks of radiation-contaminated water into the Pacific Ocean after months of media reports and denials by the utility.
"This may very well be Abe's true intention - cover-up of mistaken state actions regarding the Fukushima disaster and/or the necessity of nuclear power," said Sophia University political science professor Koichi Nakano.
Legal experts fear a broad impact on the media's ability to act as a watchdog. "It seems very clear that the law would have a chilling effect on journalism in Japan," said Meiji University's Repeta.
Critics have dismissed as political window dressing the addition of references to freedom of the press and the right to know, which were added to the bill at the insistence of the LDP's junior coalition partner, the New Komeito party.
"As things stand, the state gets a more or less free hand in deciding what constitutes a state secret and it can potentially keep things secret forever," Nakano said.
Currently, only defense secrets are subject to such classification. Security experts say that makes defense officials reluctant to share classified data with other ministries, a pre-requisite for the functioning of the planned National Security Council.
Under the new law, public servants and others cleared for access to such information could get up to 10 years in prison for leaks. At present, they face one year imprisonment except for defense officials, who are subject to up to five years in prison or 10 years if the data came from the U.S. military.
Journalists and others in the private sector who encourage such leaks could get up to five years in jail if they used "grossly inappropriate" means to encourage leaks.
(Writing by Linda Sieg; Editing by Raju Gopalakrishnan)
Tokyo Electric Power Co. is refusing to reimburse the Environment Ministry for more than ¥30 billion that was spent to decontaminate land hit by radioactive fallout from the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant, the ministry said Tuesday.
Under the special decontamination law adopted in August 2011, the state is responsible for leading and initially financing the decontamination effort, but it can ask Tepco, responsible for the Fukushima crisis, to pay the bill later.
Tepco has paid ¥6.7 billion so far, while the Environment Ministry has sought ¥40.4 billion.
The ministry said Tepco is unwilling to pay for work not directly involving decontamination. For instance, the bill includes costs related to public relations and research and development.
The ¥6.7 billion Tepco has paid covers direct decontamination work such as washing road surfaces and removing tainted soil.
According to a document presented by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry to senior ruling party officials this month, Tepco is insisting that shouldering the cost for decontamination as damages will be “duplicate payments” because it is already compensating for land and buildings.
Tepco “has said it will continue to think over whether it will reimburse the government, so we understand that Tepco has not finalized its decision to completely refuse to pay it back,” said Satoshi Watanabe of the Environment Ministry’s cleanup team, hinting Tepco may be sued. “This situation is totally unacceptable.”
The government has budgeted about ¥1.3 trillion for decontamination, of which about ¥470 billion has been used.
Facing trillions of yen in compensation payments for the Fukushima debacle and soaring fuel costs for thermal power to replace nuclear, Tepco may not even have the means to cover the decontamination bill.
Meanwhile, METI is considering exempting Tepco from paying most of the cleanup costs.
The government has not reached a consensus on the move, which could trigger a public backlash because it would mean further taxpayer help.
METI officials believe it would be difficult to win public approval for releasing Tepco from all of the decontamination costs, but it is considering limiting the bill to the ¥470 billion that has already been used, the sources said.
Finance Minister Taro Aso indicated Tuesday that his ministry may give the green light to using government money to clean contaminated areas around the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear complex.
“I wonder if we can put all the blame on Tepco, given that (nuclear policy) has been framed by the government,” Aso said.
Information from Kyodo added
By THE EDITORIAL BOARD
Published: October 29, 2013
The Japanese government is poised to enact a secrecy law that will undermine the people’s right to know. The law will give all government ministries the right to classify information related to defense, diplomacy, counterintelligence and counterterrorism as a state secret. But there is no guideline as to what constitutes a secret. This lack of definition means the government could well designate any inconvenient information secret.
Under the proposed law, government officials found to have revealed secrets could be jailed up to 10 years. Such a provision would give officials even greater incentive to label documents secret rather than risk their release.
Until now, only the Defense Ministry had the authority to classify information as a “defense secret.” Its record is abysmal. Of the 55,000 documents the ministry classified secret between 2006 and 2011, 34,000 were destroyed at the end of a particular secrecy period, depending on the document. And only one was declassified for public release.
The new law would allow the secrecy period to be extended indefinitely. And it further limits government accountability by making no clear provision for sharing secrets with elected representatives in the national Diet.
The law will make an already opaque government more so by threatening to jail journalists, up to five years, for doing their job in an “invalid” and “wrongful” manner. Japan’s newspapers fear that there will be markedly less communication between journalists and government officials. Opinion polls show that the public is very skeptical of the law and its reach. The government of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, however, is eager to pass it as soon as possible.
Fukushima: 28 Signs That The West Coast Is Being Absolutely Fried With Nuclear Radiation… 福島原発：米西海岸が確実に放射能汚染されている28個の証拠
In Around the web on October 22, 2013 at 7:44 am
From Activist Post
The map above comes from the Nuclear Emergency Tracking Center. It shows that radiation levels at radiation monitoring stations all over the country are elevated. As you will notice, this is particularly true along the west coast of the United States. Every single day, 300 tons of radioactive water from Fukushima enters the Pacific Ocean. That means that the total amount of radioactive material released from Fukushima is constantly increasing, and it is steadily building up in our food chain.
Ultimately, all of this nuclear radiation will outlive all of us by a very wide margin. They are saying that it could take up to 40 years to clean up the Fukushima disaster, and meanwhile countless innocent people will develop cancer and other health problems as a result of exposure to high levels of nuclear radiation. We are talking about a nuclear disaster that is absolutely unprecedented, and it is constantly getting worse. The following are 28 signs that the west coast of North America is being absolutely fried with nuclear radiation from Fukushima…
See updated article here…
Tepco’s ‘institutionalized lying’ might prevent restart of huge nuclear power plant 東電の「慣習化された嘘」が再稼動を抑えることになるかも
TEPCO must address ‘institutionalized lying’ before it restarts world’s biggest nuclear power plant – governor Rt.com October 28, 2013 Tokyo Electric Power Co must give a more thorough account of the Fukushima disaster and address “institutionalized lying” in the company, before it will be permitted to restart the Kashiwazaki Kariwa plant, according to a local governor.
“If they don’t do what needs to be done, if they keep skimping on costs and manipulating information, they can never be trusted,” Niigata Prefecture Governor Hirohiko Izumida told Reuters on Monday, adding that these limitations need to be overcome before the plant is restarted. It is up to Izumida to approve plans to restart the reactor at the TEPCO-run Kashiwazaki Kariwa – the world’s biggest nuclear complex, located on the Japan sea coast, north-west of Tokyo. His personal commission would examine both the causes and handling of the disaster at Fukushima and lay them alongside existing regulatory safeguards to ensure a similar crisis could not reoccur.
If Japanese nuclear safety regulators do lend their approval to the restart plans, Izumida remains able to essentially block TEPCO’s plans for the plant as the facility requires the backing of local officials, allotting Izumida some leverage. …….
Izumida suggested that TEPCO should be fully stripped of responsibility for decommissioning the destroyed Fukushima reactors, and the company subjected to a taxpayer-funded bankruptcy program. Presently, the company remains primarily concerned with funding the process, along with the frequently-occurring and very immediate issue of contaminated water leaking rather than overall nuclear safety.
“Unless we create a situation where 80-90 percent of their thinking is devoted to nuclear safety, I don’t think we can say they have prioritized safety,” he said. ……..
In September, a senior utility expert at Fukushima, Kazuhiko Yamashita, said that the plant was “not under control.” TEPCO downplayed his comments, saying that he had only been talking about the plant’s waste water problem – not the facility as a whole. … http://rt.com/news/tepco-address-lying-governor-879/
AUDIO: Physician: The high radiation doses, the plume from Fukushima crossing ocean, likely to hit coast of Canada and Northwestern US in early 2014 — California impacted later in year — People don’t know how to stop situation at plant, it’s a global public health catastrophe http://enenews.com/physician-high-radiation-doses-plume-fukushima-crossing-pacific-hit-canada-oregon-washington-early-2014-california-will-be-impacted-later-year-people-dont-stop-situation-plant-global-public-heal Tuesday, October 29, 2013By Paul Martin
Dr. Helen Caldicott, MD, pediatrician who taught at Harvard Medical School: There is no way to fix this situation. It’s going to be ongoing, as I’ve just described, for the next 50 years. What people need to know in North America is that air masses of the Northern and Southern Hemispheres do not mix at the equator, so you will get all the fallout. My family’s in Boston — my young grandchildren – and if there is a major release of radiation, I’m going to fly them to Australia. […] The high radiation doses, the plume of radiation traveling across the Pacific as I speak, is likely to hit the west coast of Canada, and Oregon and Washington early next year. And then California will be impacted later in the year by this huge plume of radiation. But what I want to stress is, people don’t know how to stop this. [...] This a global public health ongoing catastrophe and no one is attending to it.
George Knapp, host: Wow. […]
Caldicott: You can’t imagine a more deleterious situation in human terms, it’s kind of like a science fiction story, but the scary thing is its ongoing and the Japanese government is lying about it.
NRA to Tepco: Get a grip on No. 1 before thinking of restarts 原子力規制委員会（ＮＲＡ）が東電に： 再稼動を考慮する前に、まずは現在進行中の福島事故について、しっかり認識するべき
FUKUSHIMA – A senior official at the Nuclear Regulation Authority suggested Monday that Tokyo Electric Power Co. improve its management of the crippled Fukushima No. 1 power plant before restarting any reactors at its huge complex in Niigata.
Referring to two reactors at the seven-unit Kashiwazaki-Kariwa plant Tepco is seeking to restart, NRA Secretary-General Katsuhiko Ikeda told reporters, “The NRA will decide whether to go ahead with the safety assessment by seeing how the situation at Fukushima No. 1 improves.”
He made the comments after joining a rare meeting Monday between NRA Chairman Shunichi Tanaka and Tepco President Naomi Hirose to discuss ways to get a grip on the radioactive water leaking at Fukushima No. 1.
Tanaka was quoted by Ikeda as telling Hirose: “I want you to take drastic measures (to improve the situation) and respond, based on a long-term perspective.”
Clearing NRA safety checks is required before Tepco can restart the Kashiwazaki-Kariwa reactors, a move that would improve the firm’s tough business predicament resulting from the Fukushima disaster.
The repeated flows, spills and leaks of radioactive water plaguing Fukushima No. 1 have led NRA commissioners to doubt Tepco’s management adequately grasps the situation of the workers at the plant or whether the utility has the wherewithal to ensure the safety of the Kashiwazaki-Kariwa reactors.
Tepco has submitted an analysis of the recent water spills and measures it plans to prevent further incidents. This includes transferring about 20 workers from Kashiwazaki-Kariwa to Fukushima No. 1, but the steps didn’t impress the NRA.
At Monday’s meeting at the NRA building in Tokyo, Tanaka told Hirose to improve the working environment at the Fukushima plant, such as by reducing radiation levels.
“Work efficiency is not good when wearing full-face masks . . . and especially communication is difficult. I expect radiological countermeasures to be taken at the site to end this kind of situation,” Tanaka reportedly said.
Hirose separately admitted to reporters that there are still many areas where workers have to put on such masks and that he hopes to secure enough staff to deal with the stricken plant, where three reactors suffered core meltdowns.
Hirose said the safety screening process for the Kashiwazaki-Kariwa units was not among the topics discussed with Tanaka.
The NRA did not open the Tanaka-Hirose meeting to the media, except for the beginning, to allow them to engage in what it called “frank discussions.”
Tepco, which continues to struggle with the massive buildup of radioactive water at the Fukushima plant, filed for NRA safety assessments for idled reactors 6 and 7 at Kashiwazaki-Kariwa in September.
But a formal safety screening meeting for the reactors, usually held in public, has not convened, meaning the assessment process has yet to enter full swing.
Tepco is desperate to curtail the heavy costs it’s paying to buy fuel for thermal power generation in place of atomic power.
Tuesday, 29 October 2013
By Suvendrini Kakuchi/ips
TOKYO, Oct 15 2013 (IPS) - Two and a half years ago, Ayako Oga, now 30, found herself helpless as an earthquake and the tsunami it triggered hit Japan and crippled four reactors at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant. She and her husband were forced to abandon their village Ookuma Machi, barely five kilometres away.
The once-farmer is a leading activist today in Japan’s growing anti-nuclear movement, joining hundreds of Fukushima residents affected by the Mar. 11, 2011 tragedy to protest against a government plan to restart Japan’s nuclear reactors.
Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who has been aggressively pushing an economic agenda that has come to be called Abenomics, declared at a press conference last month, “We will restart nuclear power plants on the basis of the world’s strictest safety standards.”
With her worst fears come true, and now living with hundreds of evacuees in Aizu Wakamatsu, a town 100 km from the damaged plant, Oga is determined not to let this happen. “Representing important evidence of the dark side of nuclear power is something I have to do,” she told IPS.
Anti-nuclear sentiment in Japan peaked in the wake of the Fukushima incident. An opinion survey conducted by leading daily Tokyo Shimbun in July 2012 showed nearly 80 percent of the 3,000 respondents were opposed to nuclear power. Not surprising, given that the disaster forced 85,000 people to leave their homes, contaminated vast swathes of land and hit incomes of farmers and fisherfolk.
However, Oga and other anti-nuclear activists could well find themselves on the losing side now as the Liberal Democratic Party government and large corporations push for restarting the reactors, citing an energy crisis and economic losses.
Currently, Japan’s 50 nuclear reactors, which met 30 percent of the country’s energy needs, are shut down for various reasons, including routine inspection. The world’s third largest economy (GDP: 5.96 trillion dollars) imports almost 90 percent of its energy, leaving it with a trade deficit of 1.02 trillion yen (10.5 billion dollars).
With winning local approval as one of the conditions to restart the reactors, the government is publicising the stringent safety standards on the basis of which it will resume nuclear energy production.
The country had established an independent Nuclear Regulation Authority (NRA) in September 2012 comprising top scientists and safety experts. Its head Shunichi Tanaka, a scientist and native of Fukushima city, had officially stated that the official response and that of the Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO), which operated the Fukushima plant, was “groping in the dark.”
The NRA’s new safety guidelines, which came into force in July this year, are based on the concept of defence-in-depth. This requires a strengthening of the third and fourth layer of defence as well as the prevention of simultaneous loss of all safety functions due to earthquakes, tsunamis and other external events.
Operators are also required to check for active earthquake faults while building reactors, have higher tsunami protection walls and secondary control rooms.
People do seem to be buying into the government promise of safe nuclear reactors. Another survey by Japanese daily Asahi Shimbun in July this year registered a dip in support for abolishing nuclear power – 40 percent of its 1,000 respondents supported the restart of nuclear reactors with higher safety guidelines compared to 37 percent in February.
Mitsuhiko Tanaka, a scientist who has worked on reactor design for decades, likens the struggle of the anti-nuclear activists to a fight between David and Goliath.
“Activists are up against a powerful government and rich corporations who aim to justify nuclear power,” he told IPS. “They have the necessary clout to sway public opinion in Japan, where economic profit is what matters.”
He thinks the official moves to push safety standards and win public approval are gravely flawed.
“Besides the lack of transparency in the procedure of restarting the plants, a key point is that officials have still not scientifically revealed the real cause for the Fukushima accident,” he said.
Many scientists are critical of the official explanation that the 13-15 metres high tsunami alone damaged the reactors. With the reactors still in a crippled state, hard-core scientific evidence is yet to come, some say.
Professor Hiromitsu Ino, a nuclear safety expert and now head of the newly established Citizens’ Commission on Nuclear Energy, is one such critic. “I am not satisfied with the current official safety regulations because they do not include public interest and ethical aspects of nuclear power,” he told IPS. “This can be developed only after close discussions with people, and needs time.”
Ino also thinks that the new guidelines are not strict enough. For instance, he says, they permit energy operators an indefinite grace period to instal filters in boiling water reactors, viewed as critical to lessen the toxic impact of a hydrogen explosion.
The Fukushima nuclear disaster is believed to be the worst after Chernobyl in Ukraine in 1986. It remains an ongoing crisis, with the government battling to contain leaks of highly toxic ground water spilling into the sea and surrounding areas.
On Oct. 10, high levels of radioactive caesium were detected in the seawaters close to the defunct reactors, according to TEPCO.
In August, the Fukushima prefectural government released new statistics on thyroid testing on almost 200,000 children. The figures, reported in Asahi Shimbun, showed 44 children and youth diagnosed with or suspected to have the disease. They were aged between six and 18 years when the accident occurred.
Oga says her husband visited their former home in August as part of a visit arranged by the government for displaced nuclear refugees to sort out their documents and belongings.
“I did not join him even though I was keen to see my old home,” she told IPS. “I wanted to avoid radiation because I want to have a child in the future. Young people like us realise that we have only ourselves to rely on and change the world.”
No Nukes Action Committee RSS Home About Download Fukushima, Never Again Past Events A Message from Dr. Hiroaki Koide to California/ 小出裕章さんから、カリフォルニアの人々に向けたメッセージ Posted by Umi Hagitani on October 25, 2013
We would like to share the message for our October 19th Conference, from Dr. Hiroaki Koide, an Assistant Professor at Kyoto University Research Reactor Institute, who has been working tirelessly to abolish nuclear power.
A Message from Dr. Hiroaki Koide, Assistant Professor at Kyoto University Research Reactor Institute (September 24th, 2013)
I always wished to abolish all the nuclear power before any catastrophic accident at any power plant. The Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant accident made my wish never come true.
It has already been 2 years and 7 months since the first outbreak, but still Tepco cannot even locate where the reactor core that melted through. In this chaos, they pour water to cool the heat, and leak contaminated water. The reactor site at the Fukushima Daiichi is a radioactive morass. Since March 11th of 2011, it has been contaminating the Pacific. There are subcontractors of Tepco and day labors combatting against this deadly radiation.
Outside the reactor site, more than ten thousands people’s lives are destroyed. They evacuated, and have no home to come back. There are several millions, including babies are abandoned in contaminated areas and exposed to high radiation. If we applied legal compliance, the entire region must be already designated as radiation controlled area.
The criminal Japanese government who perpetuated this suffering to the people still thrives to restart nuclear power plants, building new ones, and is going to export them to overseas. They lied that Fukushima is fully under the control, so Japan will be hosting the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo. If they say the accident is under the control, they must retract that declaration of a nuclear emergency situation and obey legal compliance as a responsible nation. I lost my words at the blatant lack of responsibility and humanity. I wish those who are in charge of this accident must be jailed, which is another wish that will not come true.
I am hoping to do my best to ease the pain of Fukushima survivors and work for children who are not responsible for this accident at all. I would like to do my best to reduce their exposure to the radiation as much as possible.
We have one earth, one world, and we are all connected. I wish my best for the people of California and your effort because we all want to abolish all the nuclear power plants around the world.
‘Nuclear Slaves’ at Fukushima: Workers have debts paid off, forced to stay as ‘indentured servants 福島の原発奴隷：東電労働者は借金の返済のため年季奉公の召使いのようだ
Voice of Russia, Oct. 27, 2013: “Nuclear slaves” discovered at Fukushima [...] An in-depth journalistic investigation uncovered that thousands of unemployed Japanese were tricked into working underpaid and highly dangerous jobs on the site of Fukushima’s nuclear disaster. [...] Yakuza act as enforcers who keep the “nuclear slaves” from complaining or leaving their jobs. [...] Reuters reports that “labor brokers” [...] resort to “buying” laborers by paying off their debts and then forcing them to work in hazardous conditions until their debt to the “labor broker” is paid off. Such “employment schemes” are commonly referred to as “indentured servitude” and are a form of slavery [...] Lake Barrett, a former US nuclear regulator and an advisor to Tepco, told the news agency that existing practices won’t be changed for Fukushima decontamination: “There’s been a century of tradition of big Japanese companies using contractors, and that’s just the way it is in Japan. You’re not going to change that overnight just because you have a new job here, so I think you have to adapt.”
Asahi, Oct. 28, 2013: TEPCO President Naomi Hirose [...] explained that it is getting difficult for the utility to secure sufficient manpower at the plant and that it was grappling with tasks the company was not familiar with.
AP, Oct. 28, 2013: Hirose acknowledged that TEPCO is having trouble finding a stable pool of workers at the plant [...] TEPCO Vice President Zengo Aizawa said [...] that uncertainty remains over the long-term decommissioning process. “We are not sure about our long-term staffing situation during the upcoming process of debris removal, which requires different skills,” Aizawa told a news conference. Asked if the company may have to consider hiring foreign workers, he said TEPCO is open to that idea even though it’s not an immediate option. [...] [Shunichi Tanaka, chairman of the NRA] called on Hirose to implement sweeping steps to safeguard workers from high doses of radiation and other troubles [...]
Tepco can't yet be trusted to restart world's biggest nuclear plant: governor 泉田新潟県知事：世界一規模の柏崎原発再稼動について、まだ、東電を信用できない
Reuters) - Tokyo Electric Power Co must give a fuller account of the Fukushima disaster and address its "institutionalized lying" before it can expect to restart another nuclear station, the world's largest, said a local government official who holds an effective veto over the utility's revival plan.
"If they don't do what needs to be done, if they keep skimping on costs and manipulating information, they can never be trusted," Niigata Prefecture Governor Hirohiko Izumida told Reuters in an interview on Monday.
Izumida must approve the embattled utility's plans to restart the reactors at Kashiwazaki Kariwa, the world's biggest nuclear complex on the Japan Sea coast some 300 kms (180 miles) northwest of Tokyo.
A former economy and trade ministry bureaucrat who has emerged as a leading critic of Tokyo Electric, or Tepco, Izumida said he would launch his own commission to investigate the causes and handling of the Fukushima crisis and whether strengthened regulatory safeguards were sufficient to prevent a similar disaster.
Izumida, 51, declined to provide a timetable for completing that review - a process that could force the utility to scrap or abandon one of the key assumptions behind its turnaround plan.
"If Tokyo Electric doesn't cooperate closely with the prefecture nothing will be solved," he said. "Unless we start we won't know," he added when asked how long his review could take. "If they cooperate with us, we will be able to proceed smoothly. If not, we won't."
Even if Japan's nuclear safety regulators approve Tepco's restart plans for its Niigata reactors, Izumida can effectively block it because of the utility's need to win backing from local officials. That gives Izumida, a political independent, a platform for calling for a wider reform of Asia's largest listed electricity utility, which provides power to 29 million homes and businesses in and around Tokyo.
REMOVE TEPCO FROM FUKUSHIMA CLEAN-UP
Izumida urged Japan's government to strip Tepco of responsibility for decommissioning the wrecked Fukushima reactors, and consider putting it through a taxpayer-funded bankruptcy similar to the process used to restructure Japan Airlines.
Without that kind of sweeping restructuring, Izumida said, Tepco could be left without the resources needed to ensure the safety of its remaining nuclear plants.
In its current form, the utility threatens to be distracted by how to fund the dismantling of the Fukushima reactors over the next 30 years and the more immediate problem of containing contaminated water at the Fukushima site, Izumida said.
"Unless we create a situation where 80-90 percent of their thinking is devoted to nuclear safety, I don't think we can say they have prioritized safety," he said.
Izumida also called on the government to make more than 6,000 workers involved in decommissioning at Fukushima public employees. A Reuters investigation of working conditions at the plant found widespread abuses, including skimmed wages and the involvement of illegal brokers.
"The workers at the plant are risking their health and giving it their all. They are out in the rain. They are out at night," Izumida said. "The government needs to respect their efforts and address the situation."
A Tepco spokesman said the utility would cooperate with Izumida's investigation. "Safety is our utmost priority and we are not acting on an assumption of nuclear restarts," said Yoshimi Hitotsugi. "We want to work on this issue while gaining the understanding of the local population and related parties."
Tepco has posted more than $27 billion in losses since a massive earthquake and tsunami in March 2011 crippled the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant. The disaster knocked out cooling systems, triggered meltdowns in three reactors and a radiation release that forced more than 150,000 people from nearby towns to evacuate.
It is behind schedule on its initial business turnaround plan, which had called for firing up at least one reactor at Kashiwazaki Kariwa by April.
The utility says it can return to profitability in the business year to March without restarting the sprawling complex. But if all seven of the Niigata reactors were operational, Tepco says it would save $1 billion in monthly fuel costs.
The utility's admission in July - following months of denials - that the Fukushima plant was leaking radioactive substances into the Pacific Ocean was evidence that Tepco has not changed, Izumida said, adding the utility developed a culture of "institutionalized lying."
He said that unless the utility changes its corporate culture he won't be able to trust it to run the nuclear plant in the prefecture.
"There are three things required of a company that runs nuclear power plants: don't lie, keep your promises and fulfill your social responsibility," Izumida said.
(Editing by Kevin Krolicki, Edmund Klamann and Ian Geoghegan)
The operator of the damaged Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant has resumed its trial run of a key water decontamination system. It was shut down due to malfunctions.
Tokyo Electric Power Company on Monday began test-running one of 3 channels of the Advanced Liquid Processing unit, or ALPS. ALPS is capable of removing 62 different kinds of radioactive substances, excluding tritium.
Operation of the channel was suspended in June following leaks of unprocessed radioactive water.
TEPCO engineers discovered holes in the tank storing the contaminated water. Corrosion is apparently to blame. Work to prevent corrosion has been ongoing in all 3 channels of the ALPS system.
A test-run of another ALPS channel began about a month ago. The remaining channel is scheduled for a trial-run mid November.
Repeated suspensions of the unit have delayed the start of full-fledged operation till next year. Full operation was due to begin this autumn.
TEPCO plans to build 3 more ALPS channels next year. They also plan to set up a facility with higher water processing capabilities with government aid.
The utility hopes to complete decontaminating all its stored wastewater by March 2015.
But the question remains whether the trouble-marred ALPS system is capable of functioning over long periods.
Oct. 28, 2013 - Updated 07:05 UTC
There are 350 of the bolted-style tanks in place at Fukushima, and another 710 welded tanks, a more expensive design that takes longer to assemble......
Tepco plans to more than double the current storage capacity by 2016, but doesn't have a plan beyond that point. The math is daunting. The utility has to find space for an additional 400 tons of radioactive water each day because of the need to keep the reactors cool for the next seven years.......
A radiation filtering machine known as ALPS was supplied by Toshiba Corp to scrub the water clean of most radioactive elements, including cesium and strontium. The system, which remains in testing and under review by nuclear regulators, would leave treated water with tritium, a radioactive element typically discharged in the coolant water of reactors and considered one of the least dangerous radioactive elements.
This commentary is from Japanese comedian and activist Mako who has been covering the Fukushima disaster ..
「アルプス（他核種除去装置）のバッチ処理タンクの漏洩（６月）もね、メーカーは、『この素材でその溶接で施工すれば、絶対に漏洩する、高い塩分濃度、 高濃度の放射性物質に持つはずがない！』と再三、東京電力に（意見を）上げたそうなんだけど、コストかけられないから、と安い素材、より安価な溶接で押し 切られたんだって。そうしたら、案の定、塩分と高濃度の放射性物質で腐食して、バッチ処理タンクから漏洩したじゃない、『だからずっと言ってたの に～！！』と嘆いてたよ！」
I heard that Toshiba who built ALPS, had complained on hearing the news concerning the leaking problems. They knew leaking would have happened because of the cheap materials being used and the rushed welding job done to it. They tried again and again to use materials with more salt water and radioactive resilience to build ALPS, however, Tepco didn't listen to their advice, wanting to build as quickly and cheaply as possible, so in the end they had to build it within the budget that Tepco gave. http://www.magazine9.jp/oshidori/130823/index.php
TEPCO seeks to rotate more workers to Fukushima nuclear plant 東電は福島原発の汚染問題や廃炉にむけて、もっと東電のワーカーを配置すると言ってはいるが。。。。
TEPCO President Naomi Hirose talked about the plan with Shunichi Tanaka, chairman of the NRA, as the utility is facing mounting criticism over its handling of the situation.
TOKYO (Reuters) - In the weeks after the Fukushima nuclear plant was destroyed by a triple meltdown in March 2011, the plant's owner turned to three of Japan's largest construction companies for a quick fix to store radiated water that was pooling in the disaster zone.
The result was a rush order for steel tanks supplied by Taisei Corp, Shimizu Corp and Hazama Ando that were relatively cheap and could be put together quickly, according to the utility and three people involved in the project.
The tanks, which stand as tall as a three-storey building, were shipped in pieces and bolted together as makeshift repository for the cascade of water being pumped through the reactors of Fukushima every day to keep fuel in the melted cores from overheating.
The bolted tanks were sealed with resin and designed to last until about 2016 - long enough to buy time for Tokyo Electric Power, or Tepco, to work out a more permanent solution. But at least one of the tanks has already failed, leaking 300 tons of highly radioactive water that may have seeped into a drainage ditch and into the Pacific Ocean.
The discovery of the leak - which Tepco said on Friday was the fifth from the same type of tank - prompted Japan's first declaration of a nuclear incident since a 9.0 magnitude earthquake and tsunami triggered reactor meltdowns and hydrogen explosions that spewed radiation around Fukushima in 2011.
It has also focused attention on the uncomfortable end-game for the radiated water collecting at Fukushima.
Some 330,000 tons of contaminated water - enough to fill more than 130 Olympic swimming pools - has been pumped into storage pits and above-ground tanks at the crippled facility.
The sheer scale of the build-up has prompted some experts and officials to warn that in order to focus on containing the most toxic waste, less contaminated water will have to be dumped into the sea.
"Think about it in simple terms. If you don't release the water, there's nowhere to store it. So we also think it may have to be released," said Shinichi Nakayama, deputy director of the Nuclear Safety Research Center at the Japan Atomic Energy Agency and a member of a regulatory panel on Fukushima's problems.
Before the latest leak, Toshimitsu Motegi, Japan's minister of trade and industry, and Shunichi Tanaka, the top nuclear regulator, both indicated support for releasing water with low levels of radiation from Fukushima. No one has given any timeframe for such a move.
NOT BUILT TO LAST
Officials say the immediate priority is to figure out why the bolted storage tank failed less than two years since it was installed. They are also looking at adjusting plans for the more than 400,000 tons of additional water storage Tepco plans to build by 2016.
When Tepco commissioned the first bolted tanks the advantage was the relative speed with which contractors could finish the job just a few hundred meters from the wrecked reactor building. "These could be quickly built," said Masayuki Ono, a manager at Topco's nuclear division.
Tepco spokeswoman Mayumi Yoshida said a joint venture of Taisei, Shimzu and Hazama Ando won the first contract to build storage tanks at Fukushima in April 2011. She declined to say whether the contractors built the tank that began to leak. Tepco has not identified the cause of the leak, and has consistently declined to give details on the value of contracts it has awarded or winning bidders, citing a need to protect "corporate secrets". The Fukushima decommissioning is projected to cost at least $11 billion and take at least 30 years to complete.
Taisei, which built the structure around Japan's newest reactor at Tomari in Hokkaido in 2009, was heavily involved in the construction of the Fukushima tanks, according to three people involved, who asked not to be named. Workers and engineers at Fukushima have been put on an "emergency" footing to work on the storage tanks this week, they said.
Shimizu, which also has experience in building nuclear plants in Japan, had technology needed to build the bolted tanks and brought in experts, one of the sources said.
Taisei said it could not comment on individual client projects. Shimizu and Hazama Ando declined to comment.
There are 350 of the bolted-style tanks in place at Fukushima, and another 710 welded tanks, a more expensive design that takes longer to assemble. Nuclear Regulation Authority Commissioner Toyoshi Fuketa said on Friday that regulators also needed to examine the environmental risks posed by any failures of those tanks, especially in cases where they have been lined up directly on the ground rather than a concrete foundation.
Tepco plans to more than double the current storage capacity by 2016, but doesn't have a plan beyond that point. The math is daunting. The utility has to find space for an additional 400 tons of radioactive water each day because of the need to keep the reactors cool for the next seven years.
A radiation filtering machine known as ALPS was supplied by Toshiba Corp to scrub the water clean of most radioactive elements, including cesium and strontium. The system, which remains in testing and under review by nuclear regulators, would leave treated water with tritium, a radioactive element typically discharged in the coolant water of reactors and considered one of the least dangerous radioactive elements.
Japanese officials have indicated support for releasing water containing tritium into the sea to make room to store more dangerous radioactive materials. But that seems certain to be controversial at a time when Japanese utilities are applying to restart nuclear stations that have been idled and Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is on a drive to sell nuclear technology to countries like India and Vietnam.
The World Nuclear Association, an international organization that promotes nuclear power, endorses a limited discharge at Fukushima. "Tepco has been prevented from discharging any treated water due to political opposition," the organization said in response to questions from Reuters. "Permitting sea release of treated water would alleviate the much larger problem of a demand for massive volumes of water storage."
Tepco's already shaky credibility with regulators and the Japanese public has been further damaged by recent events.
The government’s Committee for Dispute Resolution for Compensating Damages from the Nuclear Power Plant Incident, chaired by Gakushuin Prof. Yoshihisa Nomi, held a meeting Friday and reached a broad agreement on the basic points regarding the termination.
TEPCO has been paying ¥100,000 per month per person for causing psychological damage to the residents of evacuation zones since the nuclear disaster occurred at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant following the Great East Japan Earthquake.
The panel plans to incorporate the new rules regarding compensation in a set of interim guidelines to be revised by the end of this year.
The guidelines, however, will likely include a provision along the lines of, “[Termination of the compensation] will be subject to change based on circumstances at the time,” because one committee member opposes the plan on the grounds that one year is too short.
The panel will likely set the minimum level of compensation for houses at 60 percent to 80 percent of their value when they were constructed.
Regarding land, the committee indicated a plan to make additional compensation possible in consideration of land prices.
The current standard uses the value of vacated land based on its last property tax assessment before the March 11 disaster. However, the committee plans to set a new rule in the guidelines for such factors as evacuees who bought high-priced land in urban areas.
Under the new guidelines, the evacuees are likely to receive up to 50 percent to 75 percent of the difference between the land values of their residence before the crisis and those in, and around, the area they moved to within the prefecture.
At the meeting on Friday, the committee stated that TEPCO has paid ¥90 million in compensation, on average, for a four-person household who lived in a zone where residency is prohibited for an extended period.
It was the first time the actual amount of compensation by TEPCO was officially released.
The figure is an average of the compensation that was paid in the period from when the disaster occurred until Sept. 20, based on measures for comprehensive payment of claims for compensation in which evacuees can receive compensation for up to a five-year period.
The ¥90 million compensation includes money for land and a house at ¥41.7 million; household goods at ¥7.4 million; damage for losing jobs at ¥10.9 million; and psychological damage.
Japan’s Prime Minister off to Turkey to push sales of nuclear technology 安部首相は福島原発問題が収束していないのに、原発輸出に勢力を注ぎ、トルコを訪問
He and Erdogan also penned an agreement that allows Japanese manufacturers to build nuclear power plants in Turkey.
Abe has travelled the globe since coming to power in December last year selling Japan’s infrastructure as part of his bid to dramatically hike exports and light a fire under the country’s long-slumbering economy.
His drive comes even as all nuclear reactors at home remain offline amid continuing nervousness about atomic power in post-Fukushima Japan…… http://au.finance.yahoo.com/news/japan-pm-heads-turkey-push-083205105.html
Nuclear regulators can’t win, Japan Times , 27 Oct 13 THE NUCLEAR REGULATION AUTHORITY – , which observed the first anniversary of its creation on Sept. 19, faces two diametrically opposed criticisms. Proponents of nuclear power generation criticize the NRA as the root cause of the delay in the government’s policy to promote nuclear power, while “no-nuke” groups brand the body as a mouthpiece of the “nuclear power village” (the strong network of public organizations and power companies that work toward expansion of nuclear power).
These bitter criticisms coming from both ends of a spectrum seem to summarize the contradictions of Japan’s nuclear power policy. The NRA has become a skewed organization because the idea behind creating it was to satisfy both proponents and opponents of nuclear power. That has resulted in the lack of capabilities to execute its missions, thus making nuclear power plants in Japan even more dangerous than before. Read more »
Fukushima: A Nuclear War without a War: The Unspoken Crisis of Worldwide Nuclear Radiation! 戦いなき核戦争：報道されない核による世界規模の放射能攻撃!