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A clarification about China and Taiwan


Norman Realname, 5 Aug 22,

I’m grateful to a reader for providing this explanation.

I still think that it’s a pretty bad idea for USA and Australia to start a probable World War 3 over Taiwan.

The Republic of China (ROC) and the People’s Republic of China (PRC) are NOT synonyms and should not be used as such. The ROC has NO control over Hong Kong; it’s a semi-autonomous territory ruled by the PRC under the “one country, two systems” arrangement, as per treaty. Thus, grumbling about democratic subversion aside, there was no question of the PRC’s sovereignty over it.

The ROC, however, DOES have control over Taiwan, and the PRC does NOT. As to why this is the case, the most oversimplified answer is that the Chinese Civil War never fully ended and both governments claim to rule the territory of the other, but since the PRC has the de facto control of almost all of it, it’s recognized as the “real” China. The more complicated answer is that since democratization the ROC government no longer wants to rule the mainland and sees itself as a separate Taiwanese nation but is forbidden to relinquish its territorial claims (under threat of invasion) by the PRC who view Taiwan as integral Chinese territory and would interpret any movement away from them as secession (even though the PRC has never actually ruled over Taiwan).

The US and China differ over their interpretation of the situation. The PRC’s One China PRINCIPLE states that there is only one China, and Taiwan is a part of China. The US’s One China POLICY states that they *acknowledge* the PRC’s position on the matter, without actually saying whether or not they agree that Taiwan is part of China. In other words: the US generally agrees there is only one China, but they’re not sure (read: deliberately ambiguous) whether Taiwan is part of it.

Fundamentally, while the PRC has been successful in preventing international recognition of the ROC (Taiwan), they do not control the territory and cannot control the territory without:

1. The ROC (Taiwanese) government agreeing to hand over power peacefully to the PRC.
2. A full-scale military invasion of Taiwan aimed at the surrender and/or destruction of the ROC (Taiwanese) government.

To compare the situation to Hong Kong, – the crucial difference is the People’s Republic of China did not need to roll in their military to fight some theoretical Hong Kong military in order to be able to tell Hong Kong what to do.

August 4, 2022 Posted by | politics international, Reference, Taiwan | 2 Comments

TEPCO gets the go-ahead for first phase of plan to discharge water

Storage tanks at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant hold tons of radiation-contaminated water.

August 3, 2022

FUKUSHIMA–Local officials here gave the go-ahead to Tokyo Electric Power Co. to begin preparations to discharge tons of treated but still contaminated water from its stricken Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant into the Pacific Ocean.

Approval was given Aug. 2 by Fukushima Governor Masao Uchibori and the mayors of Okuma and Futaba, where the TEPCO plant is located, for the utility to begin work to dig a tunnel from the site and install the necessary equipment.

However, TEPCO still needs to gain the understanding of “interested parties” before any water can be released.

The plan has angered local fishermen concerned about their livelihoods and triggered alarm overseas as the water will still contain a radioactive element, tritium, which is a radioactive isotope of hydrogen, that cannot be removed with current technology.

Thousands of tons of contaminated water have accumulated at the plant that went into triple meltdown in the aftermath of the 2011 earthquake and tsunami disaster, and the facility is fast running out of space to set up more storage tanks.

Tetsu Nozaki, who heads the Fukushima prefectural federation of fisheries cooperatives, told reporters in late July that his organization remains steadfastly opposed to the release of the water into the ocean. Fishermen also are up in arms, fearing the move would only fuel further negative publicity over their fish hauls.

Uchibori and the mayors met Aug. 2 with Tomoaki Kobayakawa, the TEPCO president, and told him they had no issue with the safety of the equipment to be used.

Prior approval of any new equipment TEPCO plans to install at the Fukushima plant is required under a safety agreement the local governments signed with the utility.

Uchibori again pressed TEPCO officials to make an all-out effort to gain the understanding of interested parties so the water release plan can go ahead.

The Nuclear Regulation Authority in July approved TEPCO’s water release plan. Prior to that, Uchibori stated that any decision on approving the new equipment to be installed at the Fukushima plant would be made regardless of opposition among interested parties to the plan.

In August 2015, the government and TEPCO submitted a document to the prefectural fisheries cooperatives federation stating that no water would be treated and released into the ocean without the understanding of the interested parties.

August 4, 2022 Posted by | Fuk 2022 | , , , | Leave a comment

Ironic for Tokyo to caution others on nuclear issue despite Fukushima plan

Prime Minister of Japan, Fumio Kishida speaks at the start of the tenth annual review of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty at UN headquarters on August 01, 2022 in New York City.

Aug 03, 2022

Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida urged all nuclear countries to conduct themselves “responsibly” in non-proliferation efforts on Monday when he spoke at the Review Conference of the Parties to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT) at the United Nations in New York.

The NPT Review Conference is held regularly to have discussions focused on the three pillars of nuclear disarmament, nuclear non-proliferation and peaceful uses of nuclear energy.

The issue of releasing nuclear contaminated water from the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power station is also on the agenda. In his speech, Kishida, who already foresaw related discussion unfavorable to Japan, was giving the runaround to avoid being criticized due to Japan’s extremely irresponsible plan to release contaminated water. In fact, the review conference will be between August 1-26, but Kishida is scheduled to return to Japan on August 2 after delivering his speech on the first day of the conference, at a time when specific discussion of issues on the agenda have not yet begun. No one will be able to find Kishida when the issue of releasing nuclear contaminated water is on the table.

Since its entry into force, the NPT as an international framework has guided various countries to use nuclear science and technology for peace and development. Peaceful use of nuclear energy is allowed, but it’s appalling that Japan decided to discharge nuclear contaminated water into the ocean. But how serious the consequences will be after the actual dump? It will be unpredictable and irreversible.

It’s ridiculous that Japan’s actions, which may have far-reaching impact on the world, have been “approved” and tolerated by the US. In contrast, the leakage of the Chernobyl nuclear power plant in the former Soviet Union is still strongly criticized by the US. This is undoubtedly a double standard. Wang Guangtao, an associated research fellow at the Center for Japanese Studies, Fudan University, believes that geographically speaking, although the US is also a Pacific country, judging from the flow direction and diffusion trajectory of ocean currents, nuclear contaminated water discharged by Japan will first affect Japan’s neighboring countries, not the US on the other side of the Pacific Ocean.

Japan is the only country that experienced the nuclear attack. The US has been reluctant to criticize Japan over the release of nuclear contaminated water because of the sense of guilt and its own dark history in terms of nuclear radiation.

Japan and the US maintain close communication based on the alliance, and the US is bound to side with its Asian ally, rather than listen to the opposition of neighboring countries such as China and South Korea. The possibility that the US and Japan may have reached a deal under the table cannot be ruled out, as Japan, an East Asian country, first informed the US when it decided to release the nuclear contaminated water into the sea. The report released by Japanese expert panel which calculated anticipated radiation dose to the locals after discharging all the water to the sea was soon endorsed by the International Atomic Energy Agency, in which the US is quite influential. This undoubtedly mirrors the hypocrisy of “rules-based international order” the US has vaunted.

Covered up by the US, Japan has been brazenly manipulating the nuclear issue. On the issue of nuclear safety, it is ultimately Japan that should be responsible for the health and safety of all humankind, rather than urging others to act “responsibly” when it’s on the verge of discharging nuclear contaminated water into the ocean.

https://www.globaltimes.cn/page/202208/1272070.shtml

August 4, 2022 Posted by | Fuk 2022 | , , , , | Leave a comment

Fukushima OKs facility construction for treated water release plan

August 2, 2022

Local authorities have approved the construction of an underwater tunnel and other facilities to release treated water from the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant into the ocean.

Officials from Fukushima Prefecture and the towns of Okuma and Futaba, which host the plant, conveyed their decision to the president of Tokyo Electric Power Company on Tuesday.

TEPCO, the operator of the plant, had sought the approval of those authorities based on a safety agreement.

Reactors at the Fukushima Daiichi plant suffered meltdowns in the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami disaster.

Water used to cool molten fuel mixes with rain and groundwater. The accumulated water is treated to remove most of the radioactive materials and stored in tanks on the plant’s premises.

The filtered water still contains tritium. The government plans to dilute the water, so that the percentage of tritium is well below the percentage permitted by national regulations. The amount of tritium in the diluted water is also expected to be below the guidance levels for drinking water quality established by the World Health Organization.

The utility is now set to start full-fledged construction of the underwater tunnel and other facilities. It hopes to complete the work around spring of next year.

In July, the Nuclear Regulation Authority gave its final approval for the plan that TEPCO drew up.

One focal point had been whether the local authorities would approve the plan.

Locals, including fishers, are concerned about potential reputational damage to the region.

https://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/en/news/20220802_38/

August 4, 2022 Posted by | Fuk 2022 | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Construction of Fukushima water release facilities to begin Thurs.

Fukushima Gov. Masao Uchibori, center left, hands a petition to Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry Koichi Hagiuda, center right, in Tokyo on Aug. 3, 2022. (Kyodo)

August 3, 2022

TOKYO (Kyodo) — Construction of facilities to discharge treated water from the crippled nuclear power plant in Fukushima Prefecture into the sea will commence Thursday, according to the plant operator, even as opposition at home and abroad remains.

Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc. said at a press conference Wednesday it still aims to begin releasing the treated water containing tritium about 1 kilometer off the Pacific coast around next spring after diluting it with seawater to one-40th of the maximum concentration permitted under Japanese regulations.

But the plan could be delayed until next summer due to the tight schedule.

Initially, TEPCO had planned to start constructing the facilities in June but it was only approved in July by the Nuclear Regulation Authority.

The tanks storing treated water on the premises of the Fukushima Daiichi plant are expected to reach full capacity around next fall, according to TEPCO’s calculation.

Construction will start after approval was given earlier in the week by the Fukushima prefectural government and two municipalities hosting the seaside power plant, severely damaged after a massive earthquake and tsunami in March 2011 caused core meltdowns at multiple nuclear reactors.

Water that has become contaminated after being pumped in to keep the melted fuel cool has been accumulating at the complex, also mixing with rainwater and groundwater at the site.

TEPCO and the government still face a tall task to persuade fishing communities in Japan and neighboring China, who continue to oppose the release of the treated water on safety grounds.

“It is important for us to make the best effort to clear various concerns and anxiety over the discharge plan,” a TEPCO official said.

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying reiterated her country’s opposition to Japan’s plan, calling it “irresponsible” and saying it takes no heed of concerned countries.

The South Korean government has also been expressing concern following the approval by the NRA, it said it will seek responsible handling of the situation by Japan under the principle that people’s health and safety are of the highest priority.

Taiwan’s nuclear energy council said it respects Japan’s decision as it believes the nuclear regulator made the decision on a legal basis and using its expertise.

Local government chiefs from the prefecture on Wednesday also called on the central government to take measures to prevent reputational damage to marine products, a key issue that severely impacted local businesses in the wake of the Fukushima nuclear disaster.

The mayors of Okuma and Futaba, the two towns hosting the Fukushima plant, and Fukushima Gov. Masao Uchibori made the request during a meeting with Economy, Trade and Industry Minister Koichi Hagiuda in Tokyo.

“The plan has not earned enough understanding from Japanese people and residents of the prefecture, as there are still various opinions including concerns over renewed reputational damage,” Uchibori said at the meeting, which was partially open to the media.

Okuma Mayor Jun Yoshida also urged the government to lead from the front, saying, “We hope people in the disaster-stricken area will no longer suffer from reputational damage.”

Hagiuda responded that the plan will be carried out on the premise of ensuring safety and taking thorough measures to prevent reputational damage, adding, “We will deliver information based on scientific evidence throughout the country and abroad.”

For the fisheries industry that faces the risk of damage caused by harmful rumors, it is important to create an environment where their products are traded at fair prices so young people can continue to operate businesses without worries, the local leaders’ request said.

https://mainichi.jp/english/articles/20220803/p2g/00m/0na/033000c

August 4, 2022 Posted by | Fuk 2022 | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Construction begins at Fukushima plant for water release

The construction of facilities needed for a planned release of treated radioactive wastewater into the sea next year from the damaged Fukushima nuclear power plant has begun despite opposition from the local fishing community

This aerial photo shows Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant in Okuma town, Fukushima prefecture, north of Tokyo, on Feb. 13, 2021. The construction of facilities needed for a planned release of treated radioactive wastewater into the sea next year from the damaged Fukushima nuclear power plant began Thursday, Aug. 4 ,2022, despite opposition from the local fishing community. (Kyodo News via AP, File)

ByMARI YAMAGUCHI Associated Press

August 04, 2022,

TOKYO — The construction of facilities needed for a planned release of treated radioactive wastewater into the sea next year from the damaged Fukushima nuclear power plant began Thursday despite opposition from the local fishing community.

Plant workers started construction of a pipeline to transport the wastewater from hillside storage tanks to a coastal facility before its planned release next year, according to the plant operator, Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings.

The digging of an undersea tunnel was also to begin later Thursday.

Construction at the Fukushima Daiichi plant follows the Nuclear Regulation Authority’s formal approval last month of a detailed wastewater discharge plan that TEPCO submitted in December.

The government announced last year a decision to release the wastewater as a necessary step for the plant’s ongoing decommissioning.

A massive earthquake and tsunami in 2011 destroyed the Fukushima Daiichi plant’s cooling systems, causing triple meltdowns and the release of large amounts of radiation. Water that was used to cool the three damaged and highly radioactive reactor cores has since leaked into basements of the reactor buildings but was collected and stored in tanks.

TEPCO and government officials say the water will be further treated to levels far below releasable standards and that the environmental and health impacts will be negligible. Of more than 60 isotopes selected for treatment, all but one — tritium — will be reduced to meet safety standards, they say.

Local fishing communities and neighboring countries have raised concerns about potential health hazards from the radioactive wastewater and the reputation damage to local produce, and oppose the release.

Scientists say the impact of long-term, low-dose exposure to not only tritium but also other isotopes on the environment and humans are still unknown and that a release is premature.

The contaminated water is being stored in about 1,000 tanks that require much space in the plant complex. Officials say they must be removed so that facilities can be built for its decommissioning. The tanks are expected to reach their capacity of 1.37 million tons in autumn of 2023.

TEPCO said it plans to transport treated and releasable water through a pipeline from the tanks to a coastal pool, where it will be diluted with seawater and then sent through an undersea tunnel with an outlet about 1 kilometer (0.6 miles) away to minimize the impact on local fishing and the environment.

TEPCO and the government have obtained approval from the heads of the plant’s host towns, Futaba and Okuma, for the construction, but local residents and the fishing community remain opposed and could still delay the process. The current plan calls for a gradual release of treated water to begin next spring in a process that will take decades.

On Wednesday, Fukushima Gov. Masao Uchibori and the two mayors visited Tokyo and asked Economy and Industry Minister Koichi Hagiuda to ensure safety and prevent further damage to the reputation of Fukushima fishing products.

Akira Ono, TEPCO chief decommissioning officer at the plant, promised the highest efforts to ensure safety and understanding.

“We are aware of various views on reputational impact and safety concerns (of the release) and we’ll keep explaining throughly to stakeholders,” he said.

TEPCO said Wednesday that weather and sea conditions could delay a completion of the facility until summer 2023.

Japan has sought help from the International Atomic Energy Agency to ensure the water release meets international safety standards and reassure local fishing and other communities and neighboring countries, including China and South Korea, that have opposed the plan.

IAEA experts who visited the plant earlier this year said Japan was taking appropriate steps for the planned discharge.

https://abcnews.go.com/International/wireStory/construction-begins-fukushima-plant-water-release-87905471

August 4, 2022 Posted by | Fuk 2022 | , , , , | Leave a comment

Japan’s Mihama nuclear plant reports radioactive water leak, sparking concerns after Fukushima discharge plan

A file photo shows containers of nuclear-contaminated water at the Fukushima nuclear plant in Japan on October 16, 2020. Japan’s nuclear regulator on July 22, 2022 approved the dumping of the water into the sea, despite international concerns and protests.

August 2, 2022

About 10 days after Japan’s nuclear regulator approved the plan to discharge nuclear-contaminated water from the Fukushima power plant, another nuclear power plant in central Japan leaked about seven tons of water containing radioactive elements, sparking wide concern over safety of Japan’s nuclear power plants.

Also, on Tuesday the local government in Fukushima Prefecture agreed to allow Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) to build facilities to dump the nuclear-contaminated water, Japan’s NHK reported. The Nuclear Regulation Authority of Japan on July 22 officially approved the water discharge plan.

According to the operator Kansai Electric Power Company, about seven tons of radioactive water leaked from Mihama 3 reactor at the Mihama nuclear power plant in Fukui Prefecture on Monday. The amount of radioactivity of the leaked water is about 2.2 million becquerels (Bq).

According to the Waste Management and Recycling Department, Japanese Ministry of the Environment, 100Bq/kg is the standard for safe recycling of waste and 8,000Bq/kg is the standard for safe disposal of waste.

The company claimed that the leak was contained and had no impact on the external environment.

The over 40-year-old reactor is currently out of service. The company is investigating whether the leak will affect the reactor’s scheduled restart in mid-August, Japanese media outlet Sankei News reported.

The aging Mihama 3 reactor has a stained history. In August 2004, a pipeline of the reactor broke down, which killed five and seriously injured six people, according to the Yomiuri Shimbun.

Voices from civil society have expressed their deep concern over the Mihama nuclear power plant.

According to Kyoto Shimbun, a civil group on Friday urged the governor of Shiga Prefecture to publicly announce their opposition to the Kansai Electric Power Company’s plan to restart Mihama 3 in mid-August.

The latest radioactive water leak and the dumping of Fukushima nuclear waste have largely overdrawn the credit of the Japanese authorities and related companies, according to both netizens from Japan and China.

A Japanese netizen said the old Mihama reactor has long been in bad condition. Another Japanese netizen said the accident could be intentional.

“The leak will not affect the outside environment. Really? Japan said the same thing when they decided to dump the Fukushima nuclear-contaminated water into the sea!” said a Chinese netizen.

Zhang Yancang, director of the Yellow Sea and Bohai Sea Research Institute of Dalian Maritime University, told the Global Times on Tuesday that the ocean is not Japan’s sewage disposal site, and the marine ecology is an organic whole, so once the pollution spreads, it may affect the entire body. Most countries, including the US, cannot be immune to it.

According to the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, states should hold an international legal obligation to combat transboundary pollution of the oceans. However, Japan has prepared for a long time to avoid legal responsibility for dumping nuclear-contaminated water and radioactive water leaks, Zhang said.

https://www.globaltimes.cn/page/202208/1272039.shtml?fbclid=IwAR1a95oMFMqanLQ898A5O5iBkpHJZ49ZjOHsIgHw_kOOWFcwwpUbDdo-3VU#.YurMEc3l-Rk.facebook

August 4, 2022 Posted by | Fuk 2022 | , , , , | Leave a comment

Fukushima Pref. agrees to discharge treated wastewater, protest rally held in front of Prefectural Office

August 3, 2022
On August 2, Fukushima Prefecture, Okuma Town, and Futaba Town agreed to start construction of a facility to discharge treated water that continues to accumulate at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant into the sea. Overnight, Governor Uchibori handed a letter of request to Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry Hagiuda, and citizens opposed to the discharge held a protest rally in front of the prefectural government.

On the 2nd, Governor Uchibori, Okuma Mayor Yoshida, and Futaba Mayor Izawa gave their approval to TEPCO’s plan to discharge treated water into the sea and to start construction of the facilities.

From Futaba Town, where the evacuation order will be partially lifted on the 30th of this month, please visit …….

Mayor Izawa of Futaba-machi: “Recognizing that people will actually start living in the town, we ask that you continue to work to ensure that safe and steady decommissioning work at the nuclear power plant proceeds in a systematic manner.

The prior consent was given amidst strong opposition to and concerns about the release of the radioactive waste. Governor Uchibori positioned the approval as follows.

Governor Uchibori: “This is to confirm that the necessary safety measures have been taken for the facilities planned by TEPCO.

When asked about the current lack of understanding of the release, he responded: …….

Governor Uchibori said, “The government and TEPCO are the parties concerned about the handling of the treated water. Today, I asked the president of TEPCO to make further efforts to promote understanding.

On the other hand, the government and TEPCO have promised the fishermen that they will not dispose of the treated water in any way without the understanding of the concerned parties.

President Kobayakawa limited himself to stating that “we will consider the process going forward in consultation with the national government” in determining whether or not understanding has been achieved.

Then, on the 3rd, Governor Uchibori visited the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry together with Okuma Mayor Yoshida and Futaba Mayor Izawa, and handed a written request to Minister Hagiuda.

The written request listed five items, including “explanations and understanding of the situation to all parties concerned,” including the agriculture, forestry, and fisheries industries. Governor Uchibori requested a response, stating that “there are a variety of opinions and that the prefectural residents and the public do not have a sufficient understanding.

Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry Hagiuda said, “We will make further efforts to prevent rumors from arising by delivering information based on scientific evidence to many people in Japan and abroad.

Hagita responded that he would provide fishermen, wholesalers, retailers, consumers, and others with opportunities to inspect the nuclear power plant and disseminate information.

After the meeting, Governor Uchibori said, “We talked about how the government should take firm measures so that fishermen in particular, the current generation as well as the future generation, will be able to fish with hope.

Meanwhile, citizens opposed to the discharge gathered in front of the Fukushima prefectural government office to protest the prior consent.

Don’t pollute the sea any more! Terumi Kataoka, Citizens’ Council, said, “What lies ahead of the prior consent is the ocean discharge, and we, the citizens of the prefecture, will not be satisfied with such language. For us, we feel as if we are being treated like fools.

Earlier, the citizens held a press conference and demanded that the prefectural government rescind its consent.

Don’t pollute the sea any more! Chiyo Oda, co-chairperson of the Citizens’ Council of Japan, said, “It is wrong to say that this is indispensable for decommissioning the plant, but to proceed so quickly to discharge the water into the ocean while the final form of the decommissioning process has not been shown.

Under these circumstances, TEPCO has announced that it will begin construction of a tunnel to discharge treated water from the plant on April 4. While insufficient understanding, opposition and concerns remain, only the technical preparations for next spring are steadily advancing.
https://newsdig.tbs.co.jp/articles/tuf/113919?display=1&fbclid=IwAR0B5YBqahK0csgybH7G2qfIMfDbNw0rs0eo3a2quDU3yH-S8TNIsWLsv4M

August 4, 2022 Posted by | Fuk 2022 | , , , , | Leave a comment

Resumption of Mihama Nuclear Power Plant Unit 3 delayed due to leakage of water containing radioactive materials, Kansai Electric Power Co.

Mihama Nuclear Power Plant Unit 3 (right) of Kansai Electric Power Co. In the back are (from left) Units 1 and 2=11:31 a.m., June 20, 2021, Mihama, Fukui Prefecture; photo by Takaharu Yagi from an Asahi Broadcasting Corporation TV helicopter.

August 3, 2022
Kansai Electric Power Co. (KEPCO) announced on August 3 that it would postpone the resumption of power dispatch for the Mihama Unit 3 reactor (Fukui Prefecture), which is undergoing routine inspections and was scheduled to restart on August 12. This is due to a leak of water containing trace amounts of radioactive materials in the reactor’s auxiliary building, which has necessitated an investigation into the cause and restoration work. The resumption date has not yet been determined.

 According to KEPCO, the leak was discovered during a routine inspection on the morning of January 1, near a device in the auxiliary reactor building that prevents primary cooling water from leaking outside. The amount of leaked water is estimated to be approximately 7 tons. The company claims that the water did not leak outside the building and that there is no environmental impact or radiation exposure to workers.

https://www.asahi.com/articles/ASQ83365BQ83PLFA003.html?fbclid=IwAR0shdkd-orLmI1Sz-nAkgtUeyIztVoenshBUDWwQ7AfGRYDJSGISDb8VlQ

August 4, 2022 Posted by | Japan | , , , | Leave a comment

104th protest in front of TEPCO’s head office, “Net for the Realization of No Exposure to Radiation” issued a full-length letter of offer summarizing the actual damage caused by exposure to radiation.

August 1, 2022
Children suffering from radiation exposure: “Acknowledge the relationship between the nuclear accident and childhood thyroid cancer
The Network for the Realization of No Exposure to Radiation Takae Miyaguchi

The Fukushima nuclear power plant accident spread enormous amounts of radiation.
 After the accident, many people gathered in front of the TEPCO headquarters in protest. 14 years ago, a joint protest began on the first Wednesday night of every month, and this May marked the 104th such event.
 About 100 people gather each time. Before the protest, drums are beaten and a microphone relay is used to protest and make a request to TEPCO. Each time, we hand the TEPCO a written request, and if there is any doubt about the response, we submit it again.
 This is the first time that the “Network for the Realization of Exposure Free Japan,” which I am involved with, has submitted a written request to the TEPCO. The content of the letter is a reflection of the situation and thoughts I have been experiencing through my support for the “Children’s Lawsuit for Exposure to Radiation” and other activities.
The following is a summary of the letter.
 Eleven years have passed since the accident at TEPCO’s Fukushima nuclear power plant, but the declaration of a nuclear emergency remains in effect. At the Fukushima nuclear power plant, exposure work with no foreseeable future and convergence work continue amidst the remaining debris with high concentrations of radioactive materials that are inaccessible to humans. Radioactive materials have been released into the air and are flying into the Tokyo metropolitan area on the wind. The Fukushima nuclear accident has not ended.
 TEPCO understands the despair, grief, and anger of the victims of the nuclear accident, and in an effort to hold TEPCO accountable, victims have filed lawsuits against TEPCO in various regions, and the courts have confirmed TEPCO’s responsibility for the nuclear accident, but the amount of compensation awarded by the courts to each person is shockingly small compared to the extent of the damage.
 What the victims truly desire is the return of their hometowns as they were before the nuclear accident, where people made their living, families lived, children cheered, and people laughed, and where life was normal, rooted in the local climate, and connected to history! This is what we have been trying to achieve for the past 11 years.
 Eleven years later, the evacuation designation has been lifted except for some areas that are difficult to return to.
The policy of forcing people to return to their hometowns because their annual exposure level is below 20 mSv, 20 times the allowable annual exposure level of 1 mSv for the public, is unacceptable. We denounce the depth of TEPCO’s crimes of spreading massive amounts of radioactive materials, polluting the mountains, rivers, and land of Fukushima, destroying our hometowns, and depriving people of their livelihoods.

In the face of radiation taboos and discrimination
Young People Who Courageously Stood Up Against Radiation Taboo and Discrimination

He continued.
 In January of this year, six young people who had developed childhood thyroid cancer rose to their feet. Three or four years later, many of them were found to have pediatric thyroid cancer in a Fukushima health survey, and all of them underwent surgery.
 Thyroid cancer is a slow-growing cancer, and the prognosis for surgery is good, according to the committee’s experts. However, some of the plaintiffs had recurrence after surgery, reoperation, RAI isotope treatment, and some were found to have distant metastasis in the lungs.
 Their health did not recover even after the surgery, they dropped out of college, resigned from the company where they worked, were not hired when they were told they had cancer, etc. They have thought about, worried about, and suffered from the despair of having the door closed to them at the starting line of their lives, anxiety about the recurrence of cancer in the future, treatment costs, work, and whether or not they will be able to make a living independently.
 Why is it that nearly 30 out of 380,000 children in Fukushima have developed thyroid cancer, compared to only one or two out of a million children in Japan? Why have nearly 300 cases been reported among 380,000 children in Fukushima? The Prefectural Health Study Review Committee acknowledges the high incidence of childhood thyroid cancer, but denies any causal relationship with the nuclear accident, saying that it is overdiagnosis.
 Last July, the Hiroshima A-bomb “black rain” victims’ lawsuit recognized that internal exposure is not a matter of quantity, but that if even a small amount of radiation enters the body’s tissues and is deposited, it damages cells and causes cancer. In the case of the Chernobyl nuclear power plant accident, a causal relationship between childhood thyroid cancer and the nuclear power plant accident was recognized. The plaintiffs want to clarify why they developed pediatric thyroid cancer.
 The relationship between childhood thyroid cancer and the nuclear power plant accident” is a taboo subject, and the plaintiffs have been hiding their illness for a long time for fear of being discriminated against, but they want to make their illness public and have the court find a “causal relationship between childhood thyroid cancer and exposure to radiation. They have stood up courageously to make TEPCO pay compensation for their illness. We demand the following
TEPCO must admit that it is the perpetrator of the Fukushima nuclear power plant accident and the spreading of radioactive materials.
Please admit the causal relationship between radioactive iodine released from the Fukushima nuclear power plant and childhood thyroid cancer as soon as possible.
Please take responsibility for the future of these six young people.
We ask that you take responsibility for the future of these six young people.
 The fight to leave a world without radiation exposure to children continues.
https://note.com/jinminshinbun/n/n137ff335aaa0?fbclid=IwAR2FJl-KiOLqm4GjfTdOT6uBxZ_xlAzh7BOiwkkUyeOXHsyAUXBc88jeFck

August 4, 2022 Posted by | Fuk 2022 | , , , | Leave a comment

Storage of treated water “postpones the problem” Construction approval, a nail in the coffin of the municipality where the site is located

Tanks storing treated water at TEPCO’s Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant in Okuma Town, Fukushima Prefecture, February 26, 2022 (photo by Nishi Natsuo)

Aug. 2, 2022
The Fukushima prefectural government, the town of Okuma, and the town of Futaba have expressed their consent to the construction of an undersea tunnel and other facilities that will be a prerequisite for the offshore discharge of treated water from the TEPCO’s Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant. On April 2, Governor Masao Uchibori and others gave their approval to the start of the construction work necessary for the discharge and informed TEPCO of their approval. Why did the local government give its consent?


The Promise to the Fishermen: Ongoing Debate

 We take this matter very seriously. Tomoaki Kobayakawa, president of TEPCO Holdings, visited the Fukushima prefectural government office at 5:00 p.m. that day and bowed his head with a mysterious expression on his face after receiving prior approval from the prefectural government and the top officials of Futaba and Okuma towns for the discharge of treated water into the ocean.

 According to the prefectural government officials, the three parties agreed that the opinions expressed by the prefecture, Futaba-machi, and Okuma-machi should be implemented at the earliest possible time, without delay. The prefectural government contacted TEPCO after the executive meeting that afternoon. Shiro Izawa, the mayor of Futaba Town, and Atsushi Yoshida, the mayor of Okuma Town, joined the meeting afterwards.

 In July, a report was compiled by the Technical Study Group for Ensuring Nuclear Power Plant Safety, formed by the prefectural government and others, on TEPCO’s implementation plan, which was the basis for the decision to give prior consent, stating that “technical safety was confirmed. Governor Masao Uchibori, based on the report, listed conditions such as ensuring the implementation of eight requirements, including the confirmation of radioactive materials, and reporting on the status of the efforts. At the same time, he did not forget to nudge TEPCO to “take all possible reputational measures.

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August 4, 2022 Posted by | Fuk 2022 | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Focus is on fishermen’s understanding of treated water; Governor does not approve of ocean discharge itself

After handing a written response to TEPCO Holdings President Tomoaki Kobayakawa, reporters interview (from left) Shiro Izawa, Mayor of Futaba Town; Masao Uchibori, Governor of Fukushima Prefecture; and Jun Yoshida, Mayor of Okuma Town at the Fukushima Prefectural Office on August 2, 2022, at 5:18 p.m. Photo by Daisuke Wada

Aug. 2, 2022
Regarding the release into the ocean of treated water that continues to accumulate at TEPCO’s Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant, Fukushima Prefecture Governor Masao Uchibori and the mayors of Okuma and Futaba, both located in Fukushima Prefecture, informed TEPCO Holdings President Tomoaki Kobayakawa on August 2 of their intention to give their prior approval for the start of construction necessary for the release. TEPCO had asked the three parties for their approval last December. TEPCO will now begin full-scale construction work, including the installation of an undersea tunnel, to discharge treated water approximately 1 km offshore from the No. 1 nuclear power plant. The offshore discharge is scheduled for the spring of 2023.

 The “prior consent” by the prefecture and the two towns is based on an agreement between TEPCO and the municipalities where the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant is located to ensure safety in the decommissioning of the plant. TEPCO is required to obtain the approval of each municipality regarding technical safety when constructing new facilities or decommissioning existing ones. Meanwhile, the government and TEPCO have promised the prefectural federation of fishermen’s associations that “no disposal will take place without the understanding of the concerned parties. One of the focal points will be whether or not they can gain the understanding of the prefectural fishermen’s federation.

When President Kobayakawa visited the prefectural government that day, Governor Uchibori, Okuma Mayor Jun Yoshida, and Futaba Mayor Shiro Izawa responded that they had “confirmed the technical safety” of the implementation plan for the No. 1 nuclear power plant, which includes designs and procedures for facilities to discharge treated water into the sea. The three parties then made requests regarding the control of new generation of highly contaminated water and the appropriate management of secondary wastes such as contaminated soil.

Fukushima Prefecture Governor Masao Uchibori (second from left) conveys his response to TEPCO HD President Tomoaki Kobayakawa (far right) on an application for prior approval of necessary construction work. Far left is Shiro Izawa, mayor of Futaba Town, and third from left is Jun Yoshida, mayor of Okuma Town, at Fukushima Prefectural Office on August 2, 2022; photo by Daisuke Wada.

Governor Uchibori commented, “There are various opinions, such as concerns about new rumors, opposition to the offshore discharge, and fears about the impact of land-based storage on reconstruction efforts. It cannot be said that the people of the prefecture and the public have a sufficient understanding of the situation,” he stressed. He called for the government and TEPCO to take responsibility for providing careful and sufficient explanations to deepen the understanding of all concerned parties, and to sincerely listen to their wishes and engage in dialogue with them.

After the meeting, Governor Uchibori explained to reporters, “Based on the safety assurance agreement, we confirmed that the necessary safety measures have been taken for the facilities planned by TEPCO. He emphasized that he did not approve the discharge of treated water into the ocean itself. Meanwhile, President Kobayakawa said, “We will give top priority to safety so that the decommissioning work can proceed with the trust of the local people and the reconstruction of the region can make steady progress.

 There has been strong opposition to the offshore discharge, especially from local fishermen who are concerned about harmful rumors. Against this backdrop, TEPCO has been steadily advancing preparatory work since last December, which does not require prior approval. The construction of a shaft that will serve as the entrance to the submarine tunnel and a discharge port that will serve as the exit are underway, and these works are scheduled to be completed in October this year.

 The Nuclear Regulation Commission of Japan has already approved the implementation plan for the No. 1 nuclear power plant in July, which includes the installation of an undersea tunnel for discharging treated water. The safety of the plan was discussed by the prefectural government and the local municipalities, and a report stating that “the safety of the surrounding area will be ensured” was submitted to the prefectural government and the two towns. Eina Isogai and Naohiro Hinuma
https://mainichi.jp/articles/20220802/k00/00m/040/310000c?fbclid=IwAR2QP9tp5CD_bjlcQLqGAaKHvNeD9IP93IqGzS6F0wNzNN2AJc4lRSYkL5s

August 4, 2022 Posted by | Fuk 2022 | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Korea considering taking Japan’s Fukushima plan to int’l tribunal: oceans minister

Oceans Minister Cho Seung-hwan

August 1, 2022

Korea is considering whether to petition an international court over Japan’s decision to discharge radioactive water from its crippled Fukushima nuclear power plant into the sea, the oceans minister said Monday.

Last month, Japan’s nuclear regulator, the Nuclear Regulation Authority, formally approved the plan to discharge the radioactive waste water stored in tanks at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant into the Pacific Ocean. More than 1.2 million tons of tritium-laced water is expected to be released.

During a parliamentary committee session Monday, Oceans Minister Cho Seung-hwan said that the government-wide task force on the Fukushima plan has reviewed “multiple times” whether to take the issue to the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (ITLOS).

Korea has urged Japan to have in-depth discussions with neighboring countries before pushing ahead with the plan, and has been working to garner international support for alternatives.

“The government, primarily, is making constant efforts to prevent Japan from releasing the contaminated water,” Cho said. “The government has raised the issue during multilateral meetings, stressing scientific and objective analysis verifications.”

Some lawmakers and civic groups have criticized the Seoul government for not doing enough to prevent the plan.

“We do not accept the release plan. Our stance is that we also need to think of responses (to its actual release),” Cho added.

Last year, then-President Moon Jae-in ordered officials to explore referring Japan’s Fukushima plan to the international court, including filing for an injunction.

In August 2021, the Seoul government submitted a document to the London Protocol secretariat that suggests the formation of a task force in charge of the Fukushima issue, though Japan has insisted that the matter is not subject to discussions under the Protocol.

The London Protocol calls for banning dumping, with some exceptions. It has 53 signatories, including Korea which joined it in 2009. (Yonhap)

https://en.yna.co.kr/view/AEN20220801009400320

August 4, 2022 Posted by | Fuk 2022 | , , , , , | Leave a comment

Citizens of Fukushima City protest against discharge of treated wastewater into the ocean.

Participants holding up placards saying “No ocean discharge” and other slogans.

August 1, 2022
On July 31, a street protest against TEPCO’s plan to discharge treated water from the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant into the ocean was held in front of JR Fukushima Station in Fukushima City, with about 30 citizens holding placards saying “No to ocean discharge” and online participants expressing their opinions.

 On July 22, the Nuclear Regulation Authority (NRA) approved a plan to discharge treated water 1 km offshore from the plant. Construction of the discharge facility requires the prior approval of the prefectural government and the towns of Okuma and Futaba, where the plant is located, and the decision of the three parties will be announced in the future.

 DAPPE, a citizens’ group made up of people in their teens to 30s in Fukushima Prefecture, organized the street activities. Ryo Kubota, 33, a member of the group, said, “We should seek other disposal methods (other than discharging the waste into the ocean). Fumio Haga, head of the Nakoso Fishing Cooperative, who participated online, said, “They are forcing us to do this even though we oppose it. We can’t even voice our opinions, so what should we do? (Nobuyuki Takiguchi)
https://www.asahi.com/articles/ASQ707QD6Q70UGTB003.html?fbclid=IwAR2Zo4Sqw8dl-nIVFQnyfC9_NRVA6BTATrwX59pVwj-ev8M5Kng1hOtQex8

August 4, 2022 Posted by | Fuk 2022 | , , | Leave a comment

KEPCO, Yagi, Mori, and 3 others “appropriate for prosecution” by the Public Prosecutor’s Examination Board

The head office of Kansai Electric Power Company (center) in Kita-ku, Osaka; photo by Kenji Kiba from a helicopter at the company’s head office.

Aug. 1, 2022
On August 1, the Osaka Second Public Prosecutors’ Office (Prosecutor’s Office) announced its decision to “consider indicting” former KEPCO Chairman Makoto Yagi (72), former Chairman Shosuke Mori (81), and former President Shigeki Iwane (69), all of whom had been accused of special breach of trust under the Companies Act, but were not charged by the Special Investigation Department of the Osaka District Public Prosecutors Office. The Special Investigation Department reopened the case.

 The Special Investigation Department will reopen the investigation and, in principle, make a new decision within three months as to whether or not they are criminally responsible. Even if the indictment is not filed again, if the Public Prosecutor’s Office issues a second “appropriate for prosecution” resolution, the lawyer designated to act as prosecutor will be forced to prosecute the case.
In January, a citizens’ group, “Association to Prosecute KEPCO’s Illegal Refund of Nuclear Power Plant Money,” filed a review with the Public Prosecutor’s Office, appealing against the action taken by the Special Investigation Department.

 A tax investigation by KEPCO led to the discovery that since 2019, 83 successive executives of KEPCO had received a total of approximately 370 million yen worth of money and goods from a former assistant director of Takahama Town in Fukui Prefecture, where the Takahama nuclear power plant is located (he died in 2007). It was also discovered that Yagi and Mori took the initiative to compensate 18 former executives with a total of approximately 260 million yen in the form of commissioned remuneration for a portion of the executives’ remuneration that had been reduced due to deteriorating business performance after the Great East Japan Earthquake.

 The citizens’ group filed criminal charges against Yagi, Mori, and nine others, but in November 2009, the Special Investigation Department dropped all nine charges, finding no evidence of willful intent to cause damage to KEPCO. The prosecutors’ committee voted to “drop the indictment” against six of the nine except for Yagi and Mori. Ryo Numata and Yukina Furukawa
https://mainichi.jp/articles/20220801/k00/00m/040/062000c?fbclid=IwAR31eI65WQN2p6QhS-aNRYiZM7MookQGcsuQI6FrojStiS_3pINB4ep0_jE

August 4, 2022 Posted by | Japan | , | Leave a comment