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SF Japan Consulate Protest-Stop Restarting Nuclear Power Plants in Japan and Defend The Fa
Date Thursday January 11
Time 3:00 PM - 4:00 PM
Event Type Press Conference
Organizer/AuthorNo Nukes Action
Location Details
Japanese Consulate
275 Battery Near California
San Francisco
1/11 SF Japan Consulate Protest-Stop Restarting Nuclear Power Plants in Japan and Defend The Families of Fukushima
Thursday January 11, 2018 3:00 PM
San Francisco Japanese Consulate
275 Battery St./California St.
San Francisco

The Japanese Abe government continues to restart nuclear power plants despite the failure to even contain and remove the radioactive meltdowns at Fukushima. Radioactive water continues to be pumped from the melted down reactors. The families who escaped Fukushima are also facing demands by the government to return to Fukushima who they have declared is now “decontaminated”. There are still thousands of tons of radioactive water in tanks surrounding the Fukushima plant and the government wants to release this contaminated water into the Pacific ocean.
Already billions of dollars have been spent a “clean up” that in large part is removing top soil and putting this in hundreds of thousands of bags. This contaminated soil not only is scattered throughout Fukushima but the government is also trying to bribe other prefectures or states to dispose of this contaminated soil partly by burning it. You cannot make this up but the government is actually engaged in spreading the contamination in Fukushima to other parts of Japan and obviously the world.

Previous Japanese governments had also denied that Chernobyl nuclear disaster was something that could happen in Japan. Foreign Ministry officials made a concerted effort to downplay the Chernobyl nuclear disaster in 1986 to promote nuclear power and avoid friction at a Group of Seven summit in Japan, ministry documents showed.
The documents released on Dec. 20 also showed a sense of overconfidence in the safety of nuclear power in Japan that may have led in part to the Fukushima nuclear disaster in March 2011.

The government is also preparing for the likelihood of a major earthquake which they say could kill 320,000 people and has a 70% chance of happening in the next 30 years. The idea that an earthquake of that magnitude would not create Fukushima meltdowns throughout the country is ludicrous yet the Abe government continues to churn out propaganda that everything is “under control”. The massive Nakai Trough earthquake is expected and the government is spending millions of dollars to prepare for it yet it continues to restart nuclear power plants that would likely explode in such an earthquake destroying the whole country and not only destroying Japan but contaminating the rest of Asia and the world.

At the same time, the Abe government has linked up personally with Trump and has bought billions of dollars of military hardware during Trump’s visit. The government is also moving to develop and produce nuclear weapons which as the support of the Trump government.

As part of the militarization and rise of racism and xenophobia, the government is spending $500 million to deny that the “comfort women” were sex slaves of the Japanese Imperial Army during the 2nd World War. They don’t want to continue to help the families but they are spending hundreds of millions to deny the history of Japanese imperialism?

They have also passed a secrecy law to intimidate journalists and a conspiracy law that might in the future be used to arrest people who are suspected of talking about maybe having a protest against nuclear power which is seen by the government as a critical necessity for Japan.
It is time to speak out for the Fukushima families and against the restart of nuclear power plants. Join us on January 11, 2018 at the Japanese Consulate.

Speak Out and Rally initiated by
No Nukes Action Committee

LDP Abe's Madness-Decontaminating Fukushima By Removing Top Soil?

Decontamination work begins Monday in the town of Futaba, Fukushima Prefecture, to make it habitable again by spring 2022 under a government-led reconstruction project. | KYODO
Town of Futaba kicks off radiation cleanup with eye on 2022 revival
DEC 25, 2017
FUKUSHIMA – Cleanup work kicked off Monday to make radiation-tainted Futaba, one of the towns hosting the meltdown-hit Fukushima No. 1 power plant, habitable again by around spring 2022 under a government-led recovery project.
Cleanup and demolition crews are trying to decontaminate the town, which was tainted with fallout from the plant’s triple core meltdown after the March 2011 mega-quake and tsunami. The plant’s operator, Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc., is shouldering the cost.
The work at Futaba marks the beginning of a series of government-led projects to make areas designated as special reconstruction zones livable again, with an emphasis on new infrastructure.
About 96 percent of Futaba has been designated as “difficult to return to” zone, and an evacuation advisory is still in place for the entire town, which hosts the stricken power plant with neighboring Okuma.
The cleanup will be concentrated in the special reconstruction zone, which covers 555 hectares accounting for 11 percent of Futaba.
“The reconstruction efforts will help motivate residents to return to their homes,” Futaba Mayor Shiro Izawa told officials involved in the project.
“We want you to carry out the work while thinking about the feelings of the citizens awaiting the day they can return,” he said.
Overseen by the Environment Ministry, the first steps will involve removing the top layer of soil in the area near Futaba Station, trimming grass along the streets, and dismantling nearly 60 houses and public facilities.
Along with Futaba, seven municipalities in Fukushima Prefecture have been designated as zones that are difficult to return to.
The government is aiming to lift the evacuation advisory near Futaba station by the end of March 2020, when the Joban Line plans to fully resume operation.
Some evacuees from Futaba had mixed emotions about the start of the work.
A 69-year-old woman residing in a temporary shelter in Iwaki said that her house is in the special reconstruction zone but that she had given up hope of returning because she evacuated over six years ago.
“If this was two or three years after the disaster, I might have a choice to return. But my house became run-down and I got old. Realistically speaking, I don’t think I can live there now,” she said.
On the other hand, Masamichi Matsumoto, who also fled to Iwaki, welcomed the project, saying, “I’m glad that a step has been taken to rebuild the town for the future.”
He said it is unlikely many citizens will return, partly because a nearby facility will be storing contaminated soil collected from the cleanup work.
“But I hope that Futaba will become a town where people can visit some day,” Matsumoto, 54, added.

New guidelines outlined to deal with quake that may kill 320,000
September 27, 2017 at 18:20 JST

Police officers help an "injured resident" leave a building in an earthquake drill in Yatomi, Aichi Prefecture, on Sept. 1, 2016. The aim of the drill is to prepare for a massive Nankai Trough earthquake along Japan’s Pacific coast. (Asahi Shimbun file photo)
New alert guidelines concerning a long-expected and much-feared Nankai Trough earthquake that could claim 320,000 lives will be activated in November.

The government’s Central Disaster Management Council outlined the strengthening of measures to prepare for such a contingency in its final report submitted to Hachiro Okonogi, minister of disaster management, on Sept. 26.

The trough is a shallow seabed depression that runs 700 kilometers along the Pacific seabed off Shizuoka Prefecture and down to Kyushu.

The Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA) will provide alerts to people in the region facing the trench when they find evidence of extraordinary underground phenomena on strain meters and other gauges installed in the Tokai region. The largest city there is Nagoya.

Bulletins will also urge residents to confirm where their shelters are located and how to reach them. They will be reminded to have emergency supplies on hand and secure household furniture to stop it from falling over.

A panel of experts to be set up by the JMA will evaluate this evidence and determine if it could be linked to a possible megaquake.

The JMA will also call an emergency meeting of officials from government ministries and agencies to weigh up disaster management options.

The chances of a massive Nankai Trough earthquake occurring within the next 30 years have been put at 70 percent after a study by government experts, who said up to 320,000 lives could be lost. Such a quake would have a magnitude of at least 8 and possibly even 9.

The last big Nankai trough earthquake, in 1854, caused thousands of deaths.

The new system will replace the existing disaster preparedness plan, which was based on the concept that predicting a megaquake within a range of a few days could be possible.

The council dumped this longstanding view in August.

The panel concluded that it is impossible to predict a possible megaquake on the basis of scientific findings, which finally reflects what many seismologists had long argued.

The Nankai Trough consists of three main sections, from east to west, Tokai, Tonankai and Nankai.

Seismologists fear that Tokai, Tonankai and Nankai earthquakes could occur simultaneously in a worst-case scenario.

The current disaster preparedness plan was compiled under the 1978 special measures concerning countermeasures for large-scale earthquakes. It was designed to prepare for the long-anticipated Tokai earthquake, which is predicted to strike off Shizuoka Prefecture.

Under this old plan, the prime minister was expected to declare an emergency warning when the Tokai quake was predicted by experts. Train services would be suspended while other measures kick in.

Under the new system, the JMA will issue bulletins for residents in the region of expected danger zones for the Tonankai and Nankai earthquake, not just the Tokai temblor.

The expanded preparation will involve 707 municipalities in 29 prefectures. The preparedness for the Tokai earthquake concerned 157 municipalities in eight prefectures.

But the suspension of banking services, which is part of the old plan, will be dropped.

The government will also draft guidelines for local governments that could be affected by the disaster so they can draw up evacuation plans based on their needs in advance.

Meetings will be held with local governments and businesses in the prefectures of Shizuoka, Kochi and Aichi, and after investigating local circumstances draw up the central government's guidelines.

Japan spends scant energy on renewables
"since 2011, the government, working with power utilities and the media, have pushed the narrative that nuclear power is the only effective means of reducing emissions.”

Energy crisis: Reporters are taken on a tour of the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant on April 14, 2017, as workers begin its decommissioning process. Though the power plant's meltdown raised awareness of nuclear power issues, some believe nuclear power still has a future in Japan. | KYODO
Japan spends scant energy on renewables
JAN 6, 2018
Dec. 11, 2017, marked the 20th anniversary of the Kyoto Protocol, a treaty signed by 84 countries who committed to limit the release of greenhouse gases, which are considered the cause of global warming. Japan, of course, was one of the signatories, and a Dec. 14 feature in the Asahi Shimbun reviewed Japan’s performance in carrying out the protocol’s aims.
When the treaty was signed in 1997, a prevailing opinion was that any measures taken to halt global warming interfered with economic growth, which is why developing countries had such a hard time with it. However, as Asahi points out, many of these measures subsequently turned into growth-oriented “business opportunities,” mainly in the realm of renewables.
Everyone believes Japan suffered a huge setback in its emissions goals after the Great East Japan Earthquake of March 11, 2011, which caused a meltdown at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power station that, in turn, led to all the country’s nuclear reactors being shut down. As a result, Japan started importing and using more fossil fuels, leading to higher carbon-dioxide emission levels. Some people, including environmentalists, have urged Japan to put nuclear power reactors back online in order to reduce these emissions, which, beyond how they exacerbate climate change, have the more immediate effect of causing disease and death through air pollution.
But Asahi points out that Japanese CO2 levels were not dropping even before the accident. In accordance with the Kyoto Protocol, Japan pledged to reduce its greenhouse emissions by 6 percent from 1990 levels in the first phase of the agreement, from 2008 to 2012. During that period Japanese emissions actually increased by an average of 1.4 percent a year, but due to the purchase of emissions credits from countries that exceeded their reduction targets and absorption of CO2 through Japanese forests, Japan was able to reach its target.
More significantly, the increase in CO2 was accompanied by a loss of GDP. In 1997, Japan ranked fourth among OECD countries in terms of per capita GDP, but had dropped to 19th by 2014. Similarly, in 1997 Japan was fifth in terms of “CO2 productivity” — the amount of money made per ton of CO2 emissions — and 20th in 2014.
So while the country was producing more CO2 under the Kyoto Protocol, it was also losing money while doing so, especially when you compare Japanese growth and emissions reduction to those in other countries. Between 2002 and 2014, the U.K.’s nominal GDP rose by 62.1 percent and its emissions dropped by 24.8 percent; Germany, 32 percent and 13 percent, respectively; even the U.S., which scorned the Kyoto Protocol under George W. Bush, posted 58 percent growth and 4.4 percent reductions. Japan, however, saw negative growth of -0.4 percent while reducing CO2 by only 1.9 percent.
The reason, according to Hikaru Kobayashi, an economics professor at Keio University who helped negotiate the protocol, is that other countries bolstered their efforts to reduce emissions by investing in technologies centered on renewable energy sources such as wind and solar. Japan did not. And since 2011, the government, working with power utilities and the media, have pushed the narrative that nuclear power is the only effective means of reducing emissions.
This narrative is important because the public’s concerns over its energy needs come down to two things: cost and safety. Climate change is not paramount in the average person’s mind. They want cheap energy and they don’t want to live near a nuclear reactor, regardless of arguments that say radiation from the Fukushima meltdown is not as dangerous as people think. Commercial media are married to the government line because power utilities spend a lot of money on advertising, despite the fact that, until recently, they faced no competition as regional monopolies.
A prime example of this sort of advertising was a controversial 2016 commercial broadcast in Niigata Prefecture extolling the safety measures to be implemented for the Kashiwazaki-Kariwa nuclear power plant when it goes back online.
With this scenario in mind, it was interesting to watch NHK’s Dec. 17 documentary about the “business” of renewable energy throughout the world, most of which was recorded at the recent COP23 U.N. Climate Change Conference in Bonn, where Japan was more of an observer than a participant.
The program pointed out that most developed countries, including the two top CO2 producers— the U.S. and China — are aggressively adopting renewables, and while they may have been prompted to do so as a response to climate change, they have embraced these new energy sources because they can make money out of them. In that regard, Japan is seen as being way behind the curve. As international business people told NHK during the course of their coverage, Japan has relinquished its role as a technology innovator owing to its stake in coal, which it wants to export to other countries.
The program hardly mentioned nuclear energy at all, possibly because the impetus of the global renewables offensive is the defeat of fossil fuels as a primary energy source. The theme was that Japan is missing out on economic growth opportunities by ignoring renewable energy. NHK is the only broadcaster who could ever say such a thing since it doesn’t rely financially on sponsors such as Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc. (Tepco), which discourages the development of renewables if it interferes with its mission to revive nuclear power.
Last week, the Asahi Shimbun reported on a proposed Diet bill, drawn up by a citizens group headed by former Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi, that would force utilities such as Tepco to shift transmission capacity reserved for nuclear power — and which isn’t being used now — to renewables. Many startup energy companies are failing because they don’t have access to transmission cables, which are still owned by the former monopolies.
Obviously, lack of business savvy isn’t the main reason Japan is missing out on the worldwide renewable energy boom.
Papers show ministry played down Chernobyl nuclear disaster
“The accident occurred at a nuclear plant unique to the Soviet Union, and such an accident would be unthinkable in Japan,” the ministry’s statement said.
December 21, 2017 at 15:30 JST

Foreign Ministry officials made a concerted effort to downplay the Chernobyl nuclear disaster in 1986 to promote nuclear power and avoid friction at a Group of Seven summit in Japan, ministry documents showed.

The documents released on Dec. 20 also showed a sense of overconfidence in the safety of nuclear power in Japan that may have led in part to the Fukushima nuclear disaster in March 2011.

Soviet officials announced on April 28, 1986, that a nuclear accident had occurred in Ukraine. It would become the worst nuclear plant disaster in history.

According to the documents, Foreign Ministry officials scrambled to gather information about the nuclear accident ahead of the Group of Seven summit in Japan that started on May 4.

The United States was initially passive about issuing a G-7 declaration that criticized the Soviet Union for the accident.

Washington and Moscow at that time were negotiating an agreement to reduce their nuclear arsenals, and U.S. officials did not want to push the Soviet Union into a corner with criticism about Chernobyl.

Although then Prime Minister Yasuhiro Nakasone wanted a G-7 statement that touched upon the nuclear disaster, Japan and other G-7 members were promoting nuclear energy. So the declaration that eventually emerged downplayed the possible dangers to the environment and human health from the Chernobyl disaster.

The diplomatic documents showed that terms that might disrupt plans to push forward nuclear power generation were gradually deleted from the final statement.

“The confidence of national leaders about the safety of their own nation’s nuclear plants emerges from the documents,” said Kazuhiko Togo, a former Foreign Ministry official who now heads the Institute for World Affairs at Kyoto Sangyo University. “There was likely a sense of overconfidence that the accident happened because it occurred in the Soviet Union.”

The course taken by Japan veered widely from that of European nations regarding nuclear power.

Many European nations were directly hit by radioactive materials from the Chernobyl plant, and public sentiment in those nations quickly turned against nuclear power.

One year after the Chernobyl accident, the Green Party emerged as a political force in West Germany based largely on its anti-nuclear stance. A national referendum in Italy led to a landslide victory for anti-nuclear forces.

However, in Japan, the then Ministry of International Trade and Industry, which was in charge of nuclear power generation, showed a different stance in a statement issued on April 29, 1986, immediately after the Soviet Union announced the accident.

“The accident occurred at a nuclear plant unique to the Soviet Union, and such an accident would be unthinkable in Japan,” the ministry’s statement said.

Public debate on the need for greater safety at Japan’s nuclear plants did not deepen despite cover-ups of problems at a nuclear plant operated by Tokyo Electric Power Co. and an accident at a Hokuriku Electric Power Co. nuclear plant.

“Japan did not think seriously or make preparations whenever it was faced with a nuclear incident,” said Tatsujiro Suzuki, a former vice chairman of the Japan Atomic Energy Commission. “As a result, its failure to learn from its past lessons led to the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant accident.”

Japan also failed to keep up with international moves to strengthen the safety of nuclear plants.

In 1988, the International Atomic Energy Agency asked member nations to establish measures to deal with severe accidents on the precondition that such events are possible.

However, Japan did not obligate nuclear plant operators to set up these measures.

The U.N. Convention on Nuclear Safety, which took effect in 1996, carried a provision calling on signatory nations to separate their safety oversight agencies from the agencies that promote nuclear power.

Japan did not fulfill that obligation.

(This article was compiled from reports by Ryosuke Ishibashi, Masanobu Higashiyama and Toshihide Ueda, a senior staff writer.)

Added to the calendar on Monday Jan 8th, 2018 9:27 PM
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