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Authorities deceive the public on radiation from Fukushima Daiichi

Dr Yamashita is only one among a host of politicians, bureaucrats, experts and advertising and media consultants who support the post-3.11 safety mantra of anshin (secure 安心), anzen (safe 安全), fukkō (recovery 復 興). Through public meetings, media channels, education manuals and workshops,54 local citizens in Fukushima Prefecture were inundated with optimistic and reassuring messages.
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At the same time, to reduce ‘radiophobia’ and anxiety, while focusing on the psychological impact from stress, health risks from radiation exposures have been trivialised and/or normalised for the general public.
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This approach is backed up by international nuclear-related agencies. As stipulated on 28 May 1959 in the ‘WHA12-40’ agreement, the WHO is mandated to report all data on health effects from radiation exposures to the IAEA, which controls publication.
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Nevertheless, it is no longer possible to ignore a significant body of research, including 20 years of scientific studies compiled in Belarus and Ukraine that show serious depopulation, ongoing illnesses and state decline.

Informal Labour, Local Citizens and the Tokyo Electric Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Crisis: Responses to Neoliberal Disaster Management Adam Broinowski {extensive footnotes and references on original]  September 2018, “……… (Official Medicine: The (Il)logic of Radiation Dosimetry On what basis have these policies on radiation from Fukushima Daiichi been made? Instead of containing contamination, the authorities have mounted a concerted campaign to convince the public that it is safe to live with radiation in areas that should be considered uninhabitable and unusable according to internationally accepted standards. To do so, they have concealed from public knowledge the material conditions of radiation contamination so as to facilitate the return of the evacuee population to ‘normalcy’, or life as it was before 3.11. This position has been further supported by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), which stated annual doses of up to 20 mSv/y are safe for the total population including women and children.43 The World Health Organisation (WHO) and United Nations Scientific Commission on the Effects of Atomic Radiation (UNSCEAR) also asserted that there were no ‘immediate’ radiation related illnesses or deaths (genpatsu kanren shi 原発 関連死) and declared the major health impact to be psychological.

While the central and prefectural governments have repeatedly reassured the public since the beginning of the disaster that there is no immediate health risk, in May 2011 access to official statistics for cancer-related illnesses (including leukaemia) in Fukushima and southern Miyagi prefectures was shut down. On 6 December 2013, the Special Secrets Protection Law (Tokutei Himitsu Hogo Hō 特定秘密保護法) aimed at restricting government employees and experts from giving journalists access to information deemed sensitive to national security was passed (effective December 2014). Passed at the same time was the Cancer Registration Law (Gan Tōroku Hō 癌登録法), which made it illegal to share medical data or information on radiation-related issues including evaluation of medical data obtained through screenings, and denied public access to certain medical records, with violations punishable with a 2 million yen fine or 5–10 years’ imprisonment. In January 2014, the IAEA, UNSCEAR and Fukushima Prefecture and Fukushima Medical University (FMU) signed a confidentiality agreement to control medical data on radiation. All medical personnel (hospitals) must submit data (mortality, morbidity, general illnesses from radiation exposures) to a central repository run by the FMU and IAEA.44 It is likely this data has been collected in the large Fukushima Centre for Environmental Creation, which opened in Minami-Sōma in late 2015 to communicate ‘accurate information on radiation to the public and dispel anxiety’. This official position contrasts with the results of the first round of the Fukushima Health Management Survey (October 2011 – April 2015) of 370,000 young people (under 18 at the time of the disaster) in Fukushima prefecture since 3.11, as mandated in the Children and Disaster Victims Support Act (June 2012).45 The survey report admitted that paediatric thyroid cancers were ‘several tens of times larger’ (suitei sareru yūbyōsū ni kurabete sūjūbai no ōdā de ōi 推定される有病数に比べて数十倍の オーダーで多い) than the amount estimated.46 By 30 September 2015, as part of the second-round screening (April 2014–March 2016) to be conducted once every two years until the age of 20 and once every five years after 20, there were 15 additional confirmed thyroid cancers coming to a total of 152 malignant or suspected paediatric thyroid cancer cases with 115 surgically confirmed and 37 awaiting surgical confirmation. Almost all have been papillary thyroid cancer with only three as poorly differentiated thyroid cancer (these are no less dangerous). By June 2016, this had increased to 173 confirmed (131) or suspected (42) paediatric thyroid cancer cases.47

The National Cancer Research Center also estimated an increase of childhood thyroid cancer by 61 times, from the 2010 national average of 1–3 per million to 1 in 3,000 children. Continue reading

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September 22, 2018 Posted by | Fukushima continuing, radiation, Reference, secrets,lies and civil liberties, spinbuster | 4 Comments

Informal Labour, Local Citizens and the Tokyo Electric Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Crisis

Informal Labour, Local Citizens and the Tokyo Electric Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Crisis:  Responses to Neoliberal Disaster Management     Chapter Author(s): Adam Broinowski Book Title: New Worlds from Below Book Sept 18   “………Conclusions From this discussion, it is evident how an advanced capitalist nation-state deploys a disposable population of informal labour to absorb the dangers inherent to the use of large-scale nuclear technologies and its private extractive and accumulation practices. Since its inception, nuclear power has been regarded by some as a symbol of Japan’s postwar civilisational progress.100 At the same time, the health of many thousands of people has been endangered in exposures to radiation while harms have been perpetrated upon local communities and nuclear workers and the environment more broadly as millions of people have been integrated within the centralising and concentrating dynamic of the transnational nuclear power industry.

On the mediated surface, Fukushima Daiichi has been used to prove to the world that a nuclear disaster of significant scale can be overcome and that people can survive and return to their normal lives. The government has concentrated on proving that it is safe for the Olympics, safe for tourism, safe to consume local produce, and safe to restart nuclear reactors (with 25 reactors expected to be supplying 20 per cent total energy by 2030). The neoliberal disaster model adopted, in which the state prioritises the profit of private corporations and their wealth-creating strategies while minimising public services and pursuing deregulation (e.g. of labour conditions), is indicated not only in the official intention to rebuild the local economy of Fukushima Prefecture, but also to expand, including through its transnational nuclear industry, Japan’s financial, military and industrial sector after Fukushima. This reflects the priority given to both the interests of the utilities, banks and construction companies involved in the reconstruction program, and those of multinational corporations, foreign governments and international regulatory and financial institutions involved in this sector.

At the same time, the sovereign duty to protect the fundamental needs of the population and reflect majority will is secondary to these priorities. Unlike a natural disaster, owing to the materiality of radiation that continues to be dumped and vented into the environment, facilitating the return to pre-disaster conditions by forgetting and rebuilding communities in contaminated areas is a practice of illusion. Despite the claims of the Abe administration and other nuclear promoters, Japan’s safety standards cannot adequately insure against the seismic activities or extreme weather events and their impacts on that archipelago. The authorities have furnished people with the means by which to normalise sickness and pathologise anxiety to justify the return to nuclear power reliance, while suppressing those who seek to resist it. The wealth of a healthy society and environment cannot be traded for the putative convenience and economic benefits of nuclear power generation as they are not comparable values. Official denial of the steady accumulation and exposure to ‘low-level’ internal radiation in a growing segment of the population only aggravates rather than protects the affected communities from the stresses related to Fukushima Daiichi. This inescapably leads to the need to address greater systemic problems that underlie such disasters.

As the previous organic life of village communities in contaminated zones is transformed into retirement villages and ad-hoc industrial hubs for temporary workers, this alienation from food, land, community, history, the human body and nature itself is a warning of the growing negative costs of the rapid expropriation and consumption of the planetary commons under a globalised system. Just as nuclear energy is not the solution to climate disruption caused by reliance on fossil fuels in a global capitalist economy, nor are radiation exposures comparable to everyday risks in modern society (i.e. transport accidents). If introducing ‘mistakes’ into the human genome is to be wagered against the daily conveniences of ‘modern’ life then this aspect of modernity is unsustainable. Although somewhat anthropocentric, it is a timely reminder that the Nobel Prize laureate (1946) Herman Müller stated in 1956, ‘the genome is the most valuable treasure of humankind. It determines the life of our descendants and the harmonious development of the future generations’.101

And so we return to the basic problem that no nuclear reactor can operate without radiation-exposed labour, particularly of informal or irregular workers. If these populations refused to work and joined in support with a network of translocal groups on informal and alternative life projects for greater self-sufficiency such as micro-financing, small-scale and permaculture farming on non-contaminated land, renewable and decentralised energy production and distribution, or campaigns for greater distribution of wealth, better public education and health improvement, these communities and workers could be active agents in devising models that could eventually become viable for adaptation to larger human populations. This application at scale cannot come too soon in the present context of imminent exhaustion of the planetary commons from the systemic demands for relentless economic growth and accumulation of wealth and power for the few.https://www.jstor.org/stable/pdf/j.ctt1pwtd47.11.pdf?refreqid=excelsior%3Af507747c78b2f0fba7a19d91222e4a72

September 10, 2018 Posted by | Fukushima continuing | Leave a comment

For the first time, Japan acknowledges radiation death from Fukushima, and will compensate the family

Fukushima disaster: Japan acknowledges first radiation death from nuclear plant hit by tsunami Japan has acknowledged for the first time that a worker at the Fukushima nuclear power plant, destroyed by an earthquake and tsunami more than seven years ago, has died from radiation exposure.

Key points:

  • The man had worked at the plant since the earthquake and tsunami in 2011
  • He was diagnosed with lung cancer in 2016, in his 50s
  • The Health, Labour and Welfare Ministry ruled that compensation should be paid to the family

The Health, Labour and Welfare Ministry ruled that compensation should be paid to the family of the man in his 50s who died from lung cancer, an official said.

The worker had spent his career working at nuclear plants around Japan and worked at the Fukushima Daiichi plant operated by Tokyo Electric Power at least twice after the March 2011 meltdowns at the station.

He was diagnosed with cancer in February 2016, the official said. ……..

The ministry had previously ruled exposure to radiation caused the illnesses of four workers at Fukushima, the official said.

But this was the first death……

Tokyo Electric is facing a string of legal cases seeking compensation over the disaster.

The news came as the northern Hokkaido region was hit by a 6.7 magnitude earthquake, sparking concerns at the three-reactor Tomari nuclear plant, which lost power as a result of the earthquake.

The Tomari plant has been in shutdown since the Fukushima disaster.

The Fukushima crisis led to the shutdown of the country’s nuclear industry, once the world’s third-biggest.

Seven reactors have come back online after a protracted relicensing process.

The majority of Japanese people remain opposed to nuclear power after Fukushima highlighted failings in regulation and operational procedures in the industry.http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-09-06/first-man-dies-from-radiation-from-fukushima-nuclear-disaster/10208244

September 6, 2018 Posted by | deaths by radiation, Fukushima continuing, health | Leave a comment

Opposition to release of Fukushima radioactive tritium water into the sea; longterm storage the better option

Fukushima water release into sea faces chorus of opposition  https://mail.google.com/mail/u/0/#inbox?compose=DmwnWtDqNzxklZTsLVvsRFtgBQZHzxshPgMCgrVGpNqZnjrqDwNNWbPprDwxPlNFzCVZnfDvsQwVCitizens and environmental groups have expressed opposition to the idea of releasing into the ocean water tainted with tritium, a radioactive substance, from Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc.’s disaster-stricken Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant.“Long-term storage (of the tritium-containing water) is possible from technical and economic standpoints,” Komei Hosokawa, 63, an official of the Citizens’ Commission on Nuclear Energy, said at a public hearing held in Tokyo on Friday by a subcommittee of the Agency for Natural Resources and Energy. “The radiation levels in the water will decrease during the long-term storage,” he added.

At a similar hearing held the same day in Koriyama, Fukushima Prefecture, Aki Hashimoto, a housewife from the city, said, “I never want to see further worsening of ocean pollution from radiation.”

Opinions objecting to the release of the tritium-contaminated water into the ocean were also heard at a hearing held in the Fukushima town of Tomioka on Thursday.

After Friday’s hearings, Ichiro Yamamoto, who heads the subcommittee, told reporters that many participants in the hearings said the tainted water should continue to be held in storage tanks.

The subcommittee will study the option of keeping the water in the tanks, he added.

Tepco is lowering the radiation levels in contaminated water at the Fukushima No. 1 plant using special equipment, but the device cannot remove tritium.

The tritium-tainted water is stored in tanks within the premises of the power plant, which was heavily damaged in the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami.

In 2016, an expert panel of the Agency for Natural Resources and Energy discussed five methods to dispose of the tritium-tainted water —injection deep into the ground, release into the sea after dilution, release into the air through evaporation, conversion into hydrogen through electrolysis, and burying it after it is solidified.

The panel estimated that the ocean release is the cheapest option, costing up to about ¥3.4 billion.

September 3, 2018 Posted by | Fukushima continuing, oceans, radiation | Leave a comment

Release of tritium-tainted water into sea is opposed by Fukushima fisheries group

Fukushima fisheries group opposes release of tritium-tainted water into sea https://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2018/08/30/national/fukushima-fisheries-group-opposes-release-tritium-tainted-water-sea/#.W4hrkSQzbGg

JIJI – The head of a fisheries industry group in Fukushima Prefecture expressed opposition on Thursday to the idea of releasing water containing radioactive tritium from a crippled nuclear plant in the prefecture into the ocean.

The tritium-tainted water is from Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc.’s Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant, which was damaged heavily in the powerful earthquake and tsunami in March 2011.

“At a time when harmful rumors are still circulating in Japan and some countries continue to restrict imports (of Fukushima goods), releasing the tainted water into the sea will inevitably deliver a fatal blow to the Fukushima fishery industry,” Tetsu Nozaki, who leads the Fukushima Prefectural Federation of Fisheries Cooperative Associations, said.

His remarks came during a public hearing held by a subcommittee of the Agency for Natural Resources and Energy in the Fukushima town of Tomioka.

The hearing was for the canvassing of opinions on how to deal with the tritium-tainted water. Releasing it into the sea has been proposed as one option. Similar hearings will be held in the city of Koriyama, Fukushima, and Tokyo on Friday.

Using special equipment, Tepco is lowering the radiation levels in contaminated water at the plant, but the device cannot remove tritium. While the processed water is kept in tanks within the premises of the nuclear power station, the amount of tainted water continues to increase as the plant’s damaged reactors need to be cooled continuously. Tepco is about to run out of suitable sites to construct new storage tanks, according to the government.

Discussions on ways to deal with the tritium-contaminated water are underway at the subcommittee of the government agency.

In a June 2016 report, an expert panel of the agency said that releasing the polluted water into the sea after it is diluted with fresh water would be relatively cheap and time-efficient.

August 31, 2018 Posted by | Fukushima continuing | Leave a comment

The heat stroke threat affecting Fukushima nuclear clean-up workers

Leaving no stone unturned in heatstroke battle at nuclear plant http://www.asahi.com/ajw/articles/AJ201808180033.htmlBy HIROSHI ISHIZUKA/ Staff Writer  , 18 Aug 18  OKUMA, Fukushima Prefecture–How to avert a heatstroke is more pressing than usual in Japan this summer as the archipelago bakes in a record heat wave.

It’s not just sun-worshipers, children, the elderly and the infirm who should worry.

Spare a thought for the 5,000 or so workers who toil at the crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant to get it ready for decommissioning.

They have to work outside in protective gear, with limited access to water and other resources.

At 5 a.m. on Aug. 6, a manager reminded a 20-strong group from IHI Plant Construction Co., which was contracted by Tokyo Electric Power Co., of the importance of adhering strictly to work rules.

“Please limit your efforts to shifts of less than 90 minutes,” the manager told the assembled workers in a lounge at the plant as he checked the complexion of each individual to gauge their health condition.

The workers are installing storage tanks for radioactive water that is accumulating at the plant.

They are not permitted to take food and beverages with them because of the risk of internal radiation exposure if the perishables are contaminated while they are working.

Water stations have been set up, but workers generally don’t bother to quench their thirst as it means they have to change out of their work gear to reach the sites.

During the morning meeting, the manager also checked each worker’s alcohol level and made sure that everybody had water from oral rehydration solution. After that, workers put a cold insulator in their vests and headed to the work site.

The Fukushima plant complex has about 900 tanks set up. IHI Plant Construction installed about 20 percent of them.

The workers’ primary responsibility in recent weeks is to inspect the condition of covers put in place to stop rainwater from accumulating around the tanks.

The workers are spared from the scorching sun as they work under cover, but coping with 90 to 95 percent humidity is a formidable challenge.

Junichi Ono, the head of the IHI Plant Construction’s task force assigned to the plant, said his company has tried to take every precaution against heatstroke.

“We need to pay attention because we work in a humid environment,” he said. “If a worker falls sick, we will lose valuable time taking that person to the doctor.”

According to TEPCO, 23 workers suffered heatstroke in the summer of 2011, shortly after the nuclear crisis unfolded at the plant.

Learning a lesson from that, workers were later instructed to start their tasks early in the morning and not work outdoors in principle between 2 p.m. and 5 p.m. in July and August, the hottest part of the day.

The “summer time” schedule appears to be paying off.

In fiscal 2014, the number of workers afflicted with heatstroke at the plant stood at 15.

It dropped to four in fiscal 2016, but went back up to six in fiscal 2017 despite it being a relatively cool summer that year.

Although this year’s heat wave is unprecedented, only four workers have suffered heatstroke at the plant this summer.

The Japan Meteorological Agency forecast blistering summer heat in the coming week after a respite this weekend.

August 20, 2018 Posted by | climate change, employment, Fukushima continuing | Leave a comment

Crippled Fukushima nuclear power station to get increased protection against tsunamis

Fukushima tsunami plans to be expedited at stricken N-plant   http://the-japan-news.com/news/article/0004670847 August 19, 2018

The Yomiuri Shimbun Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc. will strengthen its protections against tsunami at its Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant to prevent water contaminated with high levels of radiation from spilling outside the plant, The Yomiuri Shimbun has learned.

During the decommissioning work, contaminated water has accumulated in the basements of the buildings that house the nuclear reactors. If a tsunami were to hit, this water could flow into the sea.

To prevent water from entering the basements, TEPCO will move up the schedule for work to block openings on the surface and the buildings’ ground floors, as well as add more spots to be blocked.

Mega-quake seen as ‘imminent’

The decision to step up tsunami protections was made after the government’s Headquarters for Earthquake Research Promotion released a long-term assessment in December on the possibility of a gigantic earthquake along the Chishima Trench on the Pacific Ocean side of Hokkaido.

The assessment warned that a huge earthquake of magnitude 8.8 or greater was “imminent.”

TEPCO calculated that a tsunami striking the Fukushima plant could be as high as 10.3 meters — which is 1.8 meters higher than the elevation of the site where the reactor buildings and other facilities are located — possibly flooding the site.

About 50,000 tons of water contaminated with high concentrations of radioactive substances have accumulated in the basements of the reactor buildings, turbine buildings and other facilities of reactors Nos. 1-4.

Reactors Nos. 1-3 experienced meltdowns after the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake. Reactor No. 4 is adjacent to reactor No. 3.

Water could enter the basements of these buildings through stairways, air vents, perforated pipes and other openings. This would cause the level of contaminated water to rise, which could be taken out to sea by a tsunami’s backwash or other means.

To prepare for another tsunami, TEPCO has already closed several openings by blocking them, welding them shut and other measures. In addition, it has built temporary seawalls, moved emergency power sources to higher ground and taken other actions.

However, it has prioritized preparatory works to begin removing nuclear fuel debris — a mixture of melted fuel and parts of the reactors — and measures to deal with the ever-increasing amount of contaminated water and other issues. Of the 122 openings to reactors Nos. 1-4, only 60 have been blocked.

TEPCO is currently working on blocking seven openings. In response to the headquarters’ assessment, it plans to move up work on 11 openings by about six months and add an extra nine openings to be blocked.

“We decided to speed up our measures based on the assessment that a gigantic earthquake is imminent,” said a TEPCO employee in charge of the matter.Speech

August 20, 2018 Posted by | Fukushima continuing | Leave a comment

Radioactive tritium in Fukushima nuclear plant water, despite water treatment

Water at Fukushima nuclear plant still radioactive even after treatment, Government wants to dump the contaminated water into the sea, but locals and fishermen oppose the idea  https://www.scmp.com/news/asia/east-asia/article/2160382/water-fukushima-nuclear-plant-still-radioactive-even-after 19 August, 2018

Radioactive substances have not been removed from treated but still tritium-containing water at the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant. The government and Tokyo Electric Power Company have faced the pressing need to dispose of such treated water now kept in tanks. One option is to dump it into the sea, as tritium is said to pose little risk to human health.

If the plan goes ahead, tritium-tainted water from the nuclear plant is expected to be diluted so it is likely to lower the levels of other radioactive materials as well before being discharged.

But locals and fishermen are worried about the water discharge and a government panel debating how to deal with it has mainly focused on tritium, not other radioactive substances.

According to Tepco, a maximum 62.2 becquerels per litre of lodine 129, far higher than the 9 becquerel legal limit, was found in the water filtered by the Advanced Liquid Processing System used to remove various types of radioactive materials

Iodine 129 has a half-life of 15.7 million years.

Tepco, which gathered data in fiscal 2017 through March, also detected a maximum 92.5 becquerels of Ruthenium 106 – more than the 100 becquerel legal limit – and 59 becquerels of technetium 99 against the limit of 1,000 becquerels.

The Fukushima Daiichi nuclear complex was damaged by the 2011 earthquake and tsunami. Reactors 1 and 3 suffered fuel meltdowns as their cooling systems were crippled.

Water was injected to keep the fuel cold but it is extremely toxic. The water is filtered but it is hard for tritium to be separated.

In August, there were around 920,000 tonnes of tritium-containing water stored in some 680 tanks at the plant. But Tepco said it has not checked the concentration of radioactive materials in each tank.

The government has examined several ways to dispose of tritium-containing water, including the release of it into the sea or atmosphere.

Toyoshi Fuketa, who heads the Nuclear Regulation Authority, said pumping the water into the sea is the only solution.

August 20, 2018 Posted by | Fukushima continuing, radiation | Leave a comment

NO, Virginia – Fukushima is NOT OK

The Nuclear Resister,  August 13, 2018 Text of the flyer distributed at the Go West Come West memorial for nuclear victims in Hiroshima, August 6, 2018.

Tokyo as well as Fukushima Is NOT Radiologically Safe. The Government of Japan Is Making Tokyo Olympics “Radiating Fields” of Athletes and Visitors .

We are “Go West Come West,” an organization of evacuees from the Fukushima nuclear disaster and their supporters. On the 73rd anniversary of the United States atomic bombing, we would like to send greetings of solidarity to all visitors to Hiroshima:

Hiroshima is NOT a story of the past

Even the Japanese government’s underestimated data shows that the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant disaster released 168 times the cesium 137 discharged by the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima, which entailed about 168 times the fallout at Hiroshima. Prime-minister Shinzo Abe declared that “with regard to health-related problems (of the Fukushima accident), I (Abe) will state in the most emphatic and unequivocal terms that there have been no problems until now, nor are there any at present, nor will there be in the future.” This claim is tantamount to saying that Hiroshima atomic bombing caused no human health problems. It is totally groundless and false!

Fukushima nuclear disaster is NOT over

The disaster is still unfolding. High doses of radioactive materials are still leaking from the tops and the bottoms of the reactor buildings every moment of every day. Air, water, soil, ocean and food, all essentials for human life, are still severely contaminated by radiation due to this disaster. It is not only Fukushima that is contaminated but also the eastern part of Japan as a whole, including Tokyo.Recently four key figures among the authorities in charge of Fukushima’s reconstruction died relatively young: a former Reconstruction minister, a former Reconstruction Vice-Minister and a former Environment Parliamentary Secretary, and the incumbent Mayor of Namie, Fukushima prefecture. Now it is time that we faced the truth.

What is the Japanese government doing – Cover-up.

The Japanese government, the plant operator (TEPCO) and the mainstream mass-media are using all their power to cover up the true picture of the disaster. They do not want to take any responsibility for it, or to pay any compensation regarding the huge health damage that has been done to the residents.

Gov. returning evacuees to areas with four times the contamination level of the ‘radiological control area’

Any area in nuclear facilities or hospitals etc.where radiation levels can exceed 1.3 milli-sieverts(mSv) in 3 month period (5.2 mSv/year) or 40,000bq/m2 is designated as a ‘radiological control area.’ Access to those areas is strictly controlled. Children are banned from entering and eating or drinking there are prohibited. But the Japanese government is now spurring people to return and live in areas with levels as high as 20mSv/y!

Gov. denying any real health damage induced by the Fukushima disaster

According to the Fukushima Prefectural government, 209 children have been diagnosed with child thyroid cancer.Normally, without irradiation, the incidence is about one in a million per year.But the Japanese government has denied the relationship with irradiation. Radiological exposure, especially internal irradiation, can cause not only cancer or leukemia but also many forms of cell deaths or cell damage in important human organs including blood vessels, heart muscles and brain nerve cells. A sharp increase in cardiac infarctions, heart failures, sudden deaths, strokes, and Alzheimer diseases have been reported since the Fukushima nuclear disaster. Many evacuees have seen some of their family members, friends, relatives, acquaintances falling victim to these catastrophic failures and the number of reported cases is still increasing.

Gov. showcasing Tokyo Olympics 2020 to build up a safe image of Fukushima

The Japanese government is trying to cover up by using the “Olympics”.Tokyo is spending a large amount of money to propagate a new “radiation-safety” myth both domestically and internationally in order to make people believe that Fukushima is now totally safe.

Gov. planning to make athletes and visitors eat Fukushima produce

The government is also setting up the Olympics catering program based on the wide use of Fukushima produce for both athletes and visitors from abroad (Yomiuri Shimbun, July 24.2018).Some games are planned to be held at grounds or facilities located in highly contaminated areas of Fukushima and other prefectures (especially baseball and softball).This will also pose a severe risk to athletes and spectators through inhaling insoluble radioactive particles floating in the air.

Gov. reusing decontamination waste in public works all over Japan

The government’s decontamination efforts have accumulated 22 million tons of heavily radio-contaminated ‘decontamination waste’ in mountains of flexible container bags. The government is now trying to reuse this contaminated soil in public works and spread the radio-contamination all over the country.

Gov. planning to dump tritium-contaminated water to the ocean

TEPCO is about to release more than one million tons of the radioactive-tritium-contaminated water stored in the tanks on the premises of the defunct plant into the ocean. Tritium, radioisotope of hydrogen, is very hazardous to human health because it behaves as hydrogen and can invades any part of the body, affecting DNAs, genomes, proteins, enzymes, fat, and brain tissues. The amount of tritium to be disposed is estimated to be about 1~3 peta becquerels (1015Bq), almost 3~8 times what all the Japanese nuclear power plants released every year before the Fukushima disaster (0.38PBq).If this plan is implemented, serious radioactive contamination of the Pacific Ocean, fish and marine ecosystems, eventually air and rain, is inevitable.

We must stand up against these dangerous Japanese government policies. Let’s fight back together!

Contact us:  Website: https://www.gowest-comewest.net

E-mail: gowest.comewest@gmail.com       http://www.nukeresister.org/2018/08/13/fukushima-evacuee-arrested-jailed-at-hiroshima-memorial/

August 20, 2018 Posted by | Fukushima continuing | Leave a comment

Japan: Fukushima clean-up workers, including homeless, at grave risk of exploitation, say UN experts

 

GENEVA (16 August 2018) – Japan must act urgently to protect tens of thousands of workers who are reportedly being exploited and exposed to toxic nuclear radiation in efforts to clean up the damaged Fukushima Daichi Nuclear Power Station, say three UN human rights experts*.

Workers hired to decontaminate Fukushima reportedly include migrant workers, asylum seekers and people who are homeless,” said the experts.

We are deeply concerned about possible exploitation by deception regarding the risks of exposure to radiation, possible coercion into accepting hazardous working conditions because of economic hardships, and the adequacy of training and protective measures.

We are equally concerned about the impact that exposure to radiation may have on their physical and mental health,” they added.

Contamination of the area and exposure to radiation remains a major hazard for workers trying to make the area safe seven years after the catastrophic nuclear meltdown which followed damage to the power plant from an earthquake and subsequent tsunami.

Tens of thousands of workers have been recruited over the past seven years under the decontamination programme. Japan’s Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare indicates on its website that 46,386 workers were employed in 2016; and the Radiation Worker Central Registration Centre of Japan has indicated that as many as 76,951 decontamination workers were hired in the five-year period up to 2016.

The people most at risk of exposure to toxic substances are those most vulnerable to exploitation: the poor, children and women, migrant workers, people with disabilities and older workers. They are often exposed to a myriad of human rights abuses, forced to make the abhorrent choice between their health and income, and their plight is invisible to most consumers and policymakers with the power to change it,” said the experts.

Detailed reports that the decontamination contracts were granted to several large contractors, and that hundreds of small companies, without relevant experience, were subcontracted, are of concern. These arrangements, together with the use of brokers to recruit a considerable number of the workers, may have created favourable conditions for the abuse and violation of workers’ rights.”

The UN rights experts have engaged in a dialogue with the Government since last year and have taken into account a recent reply to their most recent concerns.

As part of its Universal Periodic Review, Japan recently ”accepted to follow up” on a recommendation from other States to restore radiation levels to those before the disaster to protect the human right to health of pregnant women and children, among several other recommendations. The experts strongly urge the Government to lower the allowable dose of radiation to 1 mSv/year to protect children and women who may become pregnant.

The UN experts remain available to advise on how best to address the ongoing issue of exposure of workers to toxic radiation following a previous response by the Japanese Government, and on the need to strengthen protection for workers.

In September, one of the UN experts, Baskut Tuncak, will present a report to the UN Human Rights Council, calling on States and employers to strengthen protection for workers from exposure to toxic substances, and proposing principles in that regard.

ENDS

(*) The UN experts: Mr. Baskut Tuncak, Special Rapporteur on the implications for human rights of the environmentally sound management and disposal of hazardous substances and wastes, Ms. Urmila Bhoola, Special Rapporteur on contemporary forms of slavery, including its causes and consequences,and Mr. Dainius Puras, Special Rapporteur on the right of everyone to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health

Special Rapporteurs are part of what is known as the Special Procedures of the Human Rights Council. Special Procedures, the largest body of independent experts in the UN Human Rights system, is the general name of the Council’s independent fact-finding and monitoring mechanisms that address either specific country situations or thematic issues in all parts of the world. Special Procedures experts work on a voluntary basis; they are not UN staff and do not receive a salary for their work. They are independent from any government or organization and serve in their individual capacity.

UN Human Rights, country page – Japan

For further information and media requests, please contact:
Ms Lilit Nikoghosyan (+41 22 917 9936 / lnikoghosyan@ohchr.org ) or
Mr. Alvin Gachie ( +41 22 917 9971 / agachie@ohchr.org ) or  srtoxicwaste@ohchr.org

For media inquiries related to other UN independent experts please contact Mr. Jeremy Laurence, UN Human Rights – Media Unit (+41 22 917 9383 / jlaurence@ohchr.org)

This year is the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, adopted by the UN on 10 December 1948. The Universal Declaration – translated into a world record 500 languages – is rooted in the principle that “all human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights.” It remains relevant to everyone, every day. In honour of the 70th anniversary of this extraordinarily influential document, and to prevent its vital principles from being eroded, we are urging people everywhere to Stand Up for Human Rightswww.standup4humanrights.org

https://www.ohchr.org/en/NewsEvents/Pages/DisplayNews.aspx?NewsID=23458&LangID=E

August 17, 2018 Posted by | Fukushima continuing | 1 Comment

Cesium Concentrated in Particles – Fukushima radiation

Fukushima Radiation Concentrated in Particles, Hot Spots, Laboratory equipment Wed, 08/15/2018 – by Seth Augenstein – Senior Science Writer – @SethAugenstein  “….

August 17, 2018 Posted by | Fukushima continuing, radiation | Leave a comment

Public outcry makes TEPCO stop selling Fukushima nuclear power plant souvenirs

Tepco halts sales of souvenirs from Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant following public outcry. Japan Times, BY CHISATO TANAKA, STAFF WRITER, 9 Aug 18 

Tepco suspended the sale of souvenirs at its crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant Wednesday — just eight days after launching the products — following public outcry that it was looking to profit from the 2011 disaster.

Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc. had been selling plastic file folders imprinted with pictures of the Nos. 1 to 4 units at the crisis-hit plant at two of the facility’s convenience stores since Aug. 1, after receiving requests for memorabilia from visitors and workers.

But the sales by the utility immediately drew criticism with many people posting angry comments on social media. One comment said Tepco was responsible for the disaster and “had no right to profit from” it, adding that the move was “arrogant and showed scant consideration for the disaster victims.” Others said the plant operator should at least donate the proceeds from the sales to local residents and charities……https://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2018/08/09/national/tepco-halts-sales-souvenirs-fukushima-no-1-nuclear-plant-following-public-outcry/#.W2y2aCQzbGg

August 10, 2018 Posted by | Fukushima continuing | Leave a comment

Ahead of Olympic Games, Fukushima nuclear power plant gets an extreme makeover

Extreme makeover: Fukushima nuclear plant tries image overhaul, Channel News Asia, 3 August 18, 

FUKUSHIMA: Call it an extreme makeover: In Japan’s Fukushima, officials are attempting what might seem impossible, an image overhaul at the site of the worst nuclear meltdown in decades.

At the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant, there’s a flashy new administrative building, debris has been moved and covered, and officials tout the “light” radioactive security measures now possible.

“You see people moving around on foot, just in their uniforms. Before that was banned,” an official from the plant’s operator TEPCO says.

“These cherry blossoms bloom in the spring,” he adds, gesturing to nearby foliage.

If it sounds like a hard sell, that might be because the task of rehabilitating the plant’s reputation is justifiably Herculean.

………TEPCO officials have been gradually trying to rebrand the plant, bringing in school groups, diplomats and other visitors, and touting a plan to attract 20,000 people a year by 2020, when Tokyo hosts the Summer Olympics.

Officials point out that protective gear is no longer needed in most of the plant, except for a small area, where some 3,000 to 4,000 workers are still decontaminating the facility.

Since May, visitors have been able to move around near the reactors on foot, rather than only in vehicles, and they can wear “very light equipment,” insists TEPCO spokesman Kenji Abe.

That ensemble includes trousers, long sleeves, a disposable face mask, glasses, gloves, special shoes and two pairs of socks, with the top pair pulled up over the trouser hem to seal the legs underneath.

And of course there’s a geiger counter.

The charm offensive extends beyond the plant, with TEPCO in July resuming television and billboard adverts for the first time since 2011, featuring a rabbit mascot with electrical bolt whiskers called “Tepcon”.

But the upbeat messaging belies the enormity of the task TEPCO faces to decommission the plant.

It has installed an “icewall” that extends deep into the ground around the plant in a bid to prevent groundwater seeping in and becoming decontaminated, or radioactive water from inside flowing out to the sea.

But about 100,000 litres of water still seeps into the plant each day, some of which is used for cooling. It requires extensive treatment to reduce its radioactivity.

Once treated, the water is stored in tanks, which have multiplied around the plant as officials wrangle over what to do with the contaminated liquid.

There are already nearly 900 tanks containing a million cubic metres of water – equal to about 400 Olympic swimming pools.

And the last stage of decommissioning involves the unprecedented task of extracting molten nuclear fuel from the reactors…….https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/asia/extreme-makeover–fukushima-nuclear-plant-tries-image-overhaul-10586540

August 4, 2018 Posted by | Fukushima continuing, spinbuster | Leave a comment

Foreign trainees used to clean up radioactive contamination from Fukushima nuclear plant

At least four firms used foreign trainees to clean up radioactive contamination from Fukushima nuclear plant: ministry, Japan Times, BY SHUSUKE MURAI, STAFF WRITER , 14 July 18  

The Justice Ministry revealed Friday that at least four construction companies have used foreign trainees in radioactive cleanup work related to the triple meltdown at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant, which occurred in 2011.

The interim report of the ministry’s probe, covering 182 companies with foreign trainee programs as of June 29, said one of the four companies, based in Iwate Prefecture, has been banned from accepting foreign trainees for five years.

The other three firms — two in Fukushima Prefecture and one in Chiba Prefecture — are still under investigation. The names of the companies were not revealed.

The ministry plans to compile a full report covering 1,002 companies in eight prefectures, including Miyagi, Ibaraki, Tochigi, Gunma and Saitama, this fall.

The research started in the wake of a government announcement in March banning the use of foreign trainees in work to remove radioactive contamination. The government says such work is not consistent with the true purpose of the foreign trainee program.

The Technical Intern Training Program was introduced in 1993 with the aim of transferring skills to developing countries. But the scheme has drawn criticism both at home and abroad as a cover for importing cheap labor for the manufacturing, construction and other industrial sectors, where blue-collar workers are in short supply…….

In May, six people under a foreign trainee program were found to have participated in construction work at the Fukushima No. 1 plant despite a ban on trainees working at the crippled facility. Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc., the operator of the Fukushima plant, said they were hired by one of its subcontractors and sent to take part in groundwork without receiving any training on how to protect themselves from radiation.https://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2018/07/13/national/least-four-firms-used-foreign-trainees-clean-radioactive-contamination-fukushima-nuclear-plant-ministry/#.W0xBe9IzbIU

July 16, 2018 Posted by | Fukushima continuing | Leave a comment

Half of Fukushima Prefecture residents want radiation monitoring posts to be maintained

Fukushima Minpo News 2nd July 2018, Nearly 50% of residents in Fukushima Prefecture are against a central
government policy to remove some 2,400 posts in the prefecture for
monitoring nuclear radiation from fallout left by the 2011 accident at
Tokyo Electric Power Co.’s Fukushima Daiichi plant, according to an
opinion poll jointly conducted by Fukushima-Minpo Co., publisher of the
namesake local daily, and Fukushima Television Broadcasting Co.
http://www.fukushimaminponews.com/news.html?id=901

July 16, 2018 Posted by | Fukushima continuing | Leave a comment