Japanese protest against post-Fukushima nuclear restart


This video says about itself:

Japan: Protesters rail against Sendai ‘No. 1’ nuclear reactor’s restart

9 August 2015

Protesters railed against the restarting of the ‘No. 1’ nuclear reactor at the Kyushu Electric Power Co. plant in Sendai, Kagoshima, Monday, the day company officials announced that a full safety check of the radioactive rods would take place ahead of its potential new lease of life.

From RT.com:

Protests as Tokyo restarts first nuclear plant since Fukushima disaster

Protesters rallied outside Japan’s Sendai nuclear plant and its company’s headquarters to demonstrate against the planned restarting of operations, over four years after the Fukushima disaster that left the entire world horrified.

One major concern about the resumption is that no evacuation plans – in case of a Fukushima-style catastrophe – have been disclosed to locals.

“There are schools and hospitals near the plant, but no one has told us how children and the elderly would be evacuated,” Yoshitaka Mukohara, a prominent Japanese anti-nuclear activist leading the protest, told the Guardian as the demonstration gathered in front of the Kyushu Electric Power Co. headquarters.

“Naturally there will be gridlock caused by the sheer number of vehicles, landslides, and damaged roads and bridges.”

His concerns were echoed by many, including Naoto Kan, prime minister during the Fukushima crisis and a participant in the protests.

“We don’t need nuclear plants,” he told protesters as he spoke during the rally.

The Fukushima catastrophe had “exposed the myth of safe and cheap nuclear power, which turned out to be dangerous and expensive,” the former leader added.

Anti-nuclear activists also expressed their frustration at the step.

“I cannot understand why operations are resuming,” said Tatsuya Yoshioka, director of Peace Boat, one of the rally organizers, as cited by the Asahi newspaper.

A day earlier, 2,000 people marched near the Sendai nuclear plant to protest against the re-launch.

It comes as the first reactor is to be restarted since a March 2011 earthquake and subsequent tsunami devastated the Fukushima nuclear power plant. …

The authorities are still dealing with the Fukushima crisis, trying to contain the contamination after the meltdown.

This video says about itself:

Japan: Protesters & police scuffle as return to nuclear power looms

10 August 2015

Several protesters scuffled with police as they railed against the restarting of the ‘No. 1’ nuclear reactor at the Kyushu Electric Power Co. plant in Sendai, Kagoshima, Tuesday. A day earlier, company officials announced that a full safety check of the radioactive rods had taken place ahead of its potential new lease of life. The reactor is set to be brought online later in the day.

Hiroshima atomic bomb commemorated today


This video says about itself:

Shigeko SASAMORI / Hibakusha Interview

May 11th (Fri) 2012, in Brooklyn, New York

Shigeko SASAMORI, a teenager in Hiroshima when the atomic bomb struck on August 6, 1945, was one of the 25 Hiroshima Maidens who were brought to New York City in 1955 for reconstructive surgery by Norman Cousins and Rev. Hiroshi Tanimoto. She has been a disarmament activist ever since.

Hibakusha Stories and Youth Arts New York will be sponsoring school visits in May of 2011.

Each school will be visited by one or more Hibakusha— survivors of the atomic bombs that were dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Japan, in the summer of 1945. Visits will provide students with a rare opportunity to hear eyewitness testimonies of one of the most significant events in human history and will introduce the students to the concepts of peace, forgiveness and reconciliation. The two-period visit will include a brief introduction to nuclear issues, first-hand accounts from the survivors themselves, small group discussions, and a final sharing from each group.

By Joana Ramiro and James Tweedie in Britain:

NEVER AGAIN

Thursday 6th august 2015

Exactly 70 years ago the world’s first atomic bomb obliterated Hiroshima

HUNDREDS of thousands of people all over the world united today to tell world leaders: “Don’t forget Hiroshima,” 70 years after the atomic bomb annihilated the Japanese city.

And today — exactly 70 years on from the Hiroshima bombing and almost to the day of the equally devastating Nagasaki bombing — medics at Japanese Red Cross Society hospitals are treating thousands of survivors — known as Hibakusha — for long-term health effects.

Nearly two-thirds of deaths at the institutions are due to cancer.

International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) president Peter Maurer said: “What more compelling argument could there be for the complete elimination of nuclear weapons, especially as most of the bombs in the arsenals of nuclear-armed states today are more powerful and destructive?”

In the year last year alone, the Japanese Red Cross Hiroshima and Nagasaki Atomic Bomb Survivors hospitals treated almost 11,000 of the nearly 200,000 living survivors.

International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent societies president Tadateru Konoe will appeal for world leaders to sit at peace memorial ceremonies in Hiroshima and Nagasaki this week.

“This commemoration is a reminder of the indiscriminate humanitarian consequences of nuclear weapons,” he said.

“It is a reminder that these consequences travel across space and time and that, once unleashed, they can never be contained.”

Meanwhile events in London and Edinburgh today will also mark the countdown towards the potential renewal of Britain’s Trident nuclear weapons in March 2016. Heading the ceremony in the capital will be Labour leadership frontrunner Jeremy Corbyn, a long-standing anti-nuclear advocate, who called on the government to lead the disarmament.

“The 70th anniversary of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima should serve as a reminder to us all of the human cost of war,” Mr Corbyn told the Star.

“It should also remind us of the lack of progress in achieving nuclear disarmament, despite global agreement on the need to do so. “We must break the impasse in global negotiations and push forward to an agreement that sees these weapons banned, as we have with chemical, biological and other weapons of mass destruction.”

Mr Corbyn will stand alongside the Green Party’s Jenny Jones AM, writer AL Kennedy, Battersea Peace Pagoda Reverend Gyoro Nagase and others during the two-minute silence honouring the hundreds of thousands killed in the bombings.

The event will be hosted by the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, whose general secretary Kate Hudson said she was mourning both the 1945 victims and those “whose lives have been blighted by their effects.”

She added: “On this poignant anniversary we must reaffirm our determination that this should never happen again.

“The British government can play its part by scrapping Trident and kick-starting global abolition.

Senior military figures say that Trident is militarily useless and the British public thinks it’s immoral and exorbitantly expensive.

“Today of all days we should remember what the effects of a nuclear bomb are and realise the only way to stop another detonation — by accident or design — is by getting rid of all of them.”

Participants will be laying white flowers by the Hiroshima Commemorative Cherry Tree planted on the square in 1967.

In Scotland, members of Trident Ploughshares will be kicking off a fasting period of three days in an event launched by MSPs Fiona Hyslop and Bill Kidd.

The fast will last from today, when Hiroshima was hit by the first atomic bomb, until August 9, the date of the Nagasaki attack.

Abe is determined to overrule his country’s constitution and restore its historic rule over the region, writes KENNY COYLE. JAPANESE premier Shinzo Abe seems intent on marking the 70th anniversary of the end of WWII with empty gestures of regret, while at the same time stoking Japan’s future military ambitions: here.

Fukushima worker dies


This video is called Fukushima Tomioka the abandoned city.

From Vice News:

Worker Dies at Disabled Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant

By Pierre Longeray et Pierre-Louis Caron

August 4, 2015 | 10:15 pm

A 30 year-old man died this weekend as he worked on decommissioning Japan’s Fukushima nuclear plant, which was devastated in the 2011 Tohoku tsunami, in which 20,000 died or were reported missing.

It is not yet known whether the man’s death was due to radiation exposure, and an autopsy is pending.

The Fukushima Daiichi plant suffered a series of meltdowns in 2011 during a massive earthquake and tsunami off the coast of Japan. The quake knocked out the plant’s cooling systems, causing meltdowns in the plant’s reactors and a radioactive leak that triggered the evacuation of thousands of people in the area.

In a statement released Monday, the plant’s operator, Tokyo Electric Power (Tepco), said that the man had been taken to the emergency room after complaining that he wasn’t feeling well. “His death was confirmed early in the afternoon,” Tepco said.

Isabelle Dublineau, the head of the experimental radiotoxicology laboratory for France’s Institute for Radiological Protection and Nuclear Safety (IRSN), said that, “there are many thresholds of radiation exposure.” Speaking to VICE News Tuesday, Dublineau said it was “too early” to comment on the death.

This is the third recorded death at the stricken Fukushima plant since the start of the decommissioning work. In March 2014, a laborer at the plant was killed after being buried under gravel while digging, and in January 2015, a worker died after falling inside a water storage tank.

While the latest death has already been branded suspicious in the media, Tepco has so far denied that any of the deaths are related to radiation exposure.

On some days, radioactive emissions at the Fukushima plant can be as high as 2.16 millisieverts [mSv] — more than one-tenth of the allowed annual exposure for nuclear energy workers. As a result, workers are limited to three-hour shifts, and labor in grueling conditions, particularly in the summer, when the temperature can reach 113 degrees. The heat is made worse by the heavy protective gear worn by workers to protect themselves from radiation exposure — including suits boots, gloves and masks.

The worker who died over the weekend was working up to three hours a day at the plant, on the construction of the “ice wall” — an underground frozen wall designed to box in the melted reactors and contain the seeping radioactive water to prevent further groundwater pollution. Today, clean groundwater from around the plant flows through the melted reactor and mixes with the contaminated water in the reactors. To prevent ocean pollution, Tepco has to store the contaminated water in reservoirs and treat it, before pumping it back out.

Tepco has warned that decommissioning the Fukushima nuclear plant could take up to 40 years. In early July, the Japanese government notified the evacuated residents of Naraha — a town of 7,400 that lies 20 miles from the nuclear plant — that they would be able return to their homes in September. Naraha has an estimated annual radiation dose of 20 millisieverts — the maximum annual dose allowed for nuclear energy workers in France.

Following the 2011 nuclear disaster, Japan shut down all of its 50 working reactors, which were supplying close to a third of the country’s electricity. …

Tepco has been heavily criticized for its handling of the Fukushima catastrophe, and three former Tepco executives currently face criminal charges and are due to stand trial soon for “negligence.”

In February, the nuclear operator revealed that contaminated water had been leaking into the Pacific ocean. According to French daily Le Monde, Tepco had known about the leak for almost a year before it made the information public.