23 thoughts on “Fukushima nuclear disaster victims are angry

  1. Japan’s damaged rice culture

    The 3.11 tsunami and radiation may have changed a system for good The effects of the March 11, 2011 earthquake and nuclear disaster in Fukushima, Japan have wrought havoc on the long-term prospects for the country’s storied rice industry as well as doing short-term damage, according to a report by the Philippines-based International Rice Research Institute. The disaster spurred evacuation of farmland in a 30-km radius around the nuclear plant, with consumer confidence in domestic rice falling and cutting into a system in which the country has been able to maintain the sovereignty of its international agricultural trade policies and agreements, with high tariffs keeping Japanese farmers self-sustaining, according to the report.

    (Asia Sentinel, Jan 20)

    Link: http://www.asiasentinel.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=4157&Itemid=201


  2. Rightist rams car into SDP’s head office

    A 41-year-old man was arrested Sunday morning for ramming his car several times into the shuttered entrance of the headquarters of the Social Democratic Party in Tokyo, police said. Takuya Ueno, who says he is a rightist, was apprehended on the spot by police officers alerted by a guard. No one was injured. Investigators quoted the man as saying he would explain his motives later. The small opposition party supports the Constitution’s pacifist stance and opposes nuclear power.

    (Japan Times, Jan 23)
    Link: http://www.japantimes.co.jp/text/nn20120122x3.html


  3. Fallout from Fukushima No. 1 on rise

    The amount of radioactive materials released from the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant has risen this month compared with December, Tepco said. The amount so far has come to 70 million becquerels per hour, compared with 60 million becquerels in December, Tokyo Electric Power Co. said Monday, adding that the increase is attributable to the displacement of radioactive materials that had settled on facilities and equipment as a result of work conducted near reactors 2 and 3. Tepco has recently probed the inside of the container vessel for the No. 2 reactor with an industrial endoscope and conducted scrap work around reactor 3.

    While the amount of radioactive materials released from reactor 1 decreased to one-fifth the level in December, the amount of materials from the other two each increased by 10 million becquerels per hour, Tepco said.

    (Japan Times, Jan 25)

    Link: http://www.japantimes.co.jp/text/nn20120125a8.html


  4. Japan finds water leaks at stricken nuclear plant

    Japan’s stricken nuclear power plant has leaked more than 600 liters of water, forcing it to briefly suspend cooling operations at a spent-fuel pond at the weekend, but none is thought to have escaped into the ocean, the plant’s operator and domestic media said. The Fukushima plant, on the coast north of Tokyo, was wrecked by a huge earthquake and tsunami in March last year, triggering the evacuation of around 80,000 people in the world’s worst nuclear crisis in 25 years. The operator of the complex, the Tokyo Electric Power Co (Tepco), reported two main leakages on its Web site on Sunday, one from a pump near the plant’s office building and another from a back-up cooling system at reactor No.4.

    “The cooling water is from a filtrate tank for fire extinction and doesn’t contain radioactive materials,” Tepco said of the incident at reactor No. 4. It added that some water from the other leakage had flowed into a drain and “we are examining whether this water has flowed into the ocean or not.” The Nikkei newspaper Monday quoted Tepco as saying around 40 liters had leaked from the pool-cooling system of the No. 4 reactor Sunday morning, with probably 600 liters of purified water leaking from another point. Water had also leaked at other facilities within the complex, the Nikkei added.

    (Reuters, Jan 30)


  5. Tepco bailout largest in Japan since rescue of banking industry

    Tokyo Electric Power Co. is set to receive a government bailout that may cost as much as 11 trillion yen ($137 billion) after the Fukushima nuclear disaster, the largest in Japan since the rescue of the banking industry in the 1990s. Japan’s government included 2 trillion yen in this year’s budget for the Nuclear Damage Liability Facilitation Fund, the bailout vehicle for the utility known as Tepco. Part of that allocation can be used for the purchase of a stake in Tepco being considered by the government. The government plans to budget 4 trillion yen in the next fiscal year and has issued 5 trillion yen of so called delivery bonds, which the state fund can cash in for financial aid to Tepco.

    (Bloomberg, Feb 24)
    Link: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-02-24/tepco-bailout-largest-in-japan-since-rescue-of-banking-industry.html


  6. Japan fears permanent ban on habitation near nuclear plant
    26 Feb
    Japan on Friday said some areas surrounding the Fukushima nuclear power plant that was wrecked last year by a massive tsunami will likely remain permanently off-limits. Measurements taken between November and January confirm earlier results which show a level of radioactivity of 470 millisierverts per year when the average, under normal conditions, is less than one per year, according to a government report released on Friday. Some of the highest readings were taken in the town of Futaba, to the north-west of the plant wrecked on March 11. (Straits Times)

    Forced out by tsunami, Japan sushi chef dreams of home
    24 Feb
    When the tsunami roared through his northern Japanese hometown of Ofunato last March, sushi chef Sanichi Niinuma managed to escape with his life, but his shop was battered and badly damaged by the raging waters. In the aftermath of the disaster, which killed over 400 in the city, the 47-year-old Niinuma went as far as starting to rebuild his shop — only to be told by the city that the area was off limits since the land had sunk and power and sewage systems were destroyed. After several months of part-time work, he accepted an offer to take over a sushi shop in Tokyo, becoming one of thousands of people forced out of their hometowns across northern Japan by the disaster in order to make a living. (Reuters)


  7. Tepco’s political tentacles

    Just as Tokyo Electric Power Co. is under fire for trying to raise consumers’ electricity bills before making sufficient efforts to streamline its management, a series of cases have surfaced in which the company appeared to be trying to strengthen its political influence by sending employees to prefectural and municipal assemblies. It has been confirmed so far that there are 19 members of various local legislatures who are still on the payroll of Tepco. Tatsuo Ishiguro, a member of the Democratic Party of Japan, was elected to the Nerima Ward assembly in Tokyo in April last year, shortly after the earthquake and tsunami of March 11 played havoc with Tepco’s Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant.

    (Japan Times, Feb 28)
    Link: http://www.japantimes.co.jp/text/eo20120228a1.html


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