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|On 9th Anniversary of The Nuclear Explosions At Fukushima Speak Out At Japanese Consulate|
|Import into your personal calendar|
|Date||Wednesday March 11|
|Time||3:00 PM - 4:00 PM|
|Organizer/Author||No Nukes Action|
3/11/20 On The 9th Anniversary of The Nuclear Explosions At Fukushima Speak Out At Japanese Consulate In San Francisco
No More Fukushima, No Olympics In Fukushima & Japan
Defend The Families and Children
Stop The Cover-up Of The Coronavirus Pandemic
Abe and Crooked Cronies Out Now
Stop The Madness!
Wednesday March 11, 2020 3:00 PM
San Francisco Japanese Consulate
275 Battery St near California St.
Join No Nukes Action NNA on it’s 90th action at the San Francisco Japanese Consulate and the 9th anniversary of the man made disaster to stop the Abe Japanese governments restart of Japan’s nuclear plants and to protect the people and families of Fukushima.
The Abe government continues to tell the people of Japan and the the world that Fukushima has been decontaminated and is safe for the Olympics. This is a criminal lie.
Abe told the Olympic committee and the world that Japan should get the Olympics since the Fukushima meltdowns had been resolved but the three reactors still have melted nuclear rods which they are unable to remove.
Additionally there is over 1 million tons of contaminated radioactive tritium water in thousands of tanks surrounding the broken nuclear plants in Fukushima.
The government wants to release the water in the Pacific Ocean despite the opposition of the Fukushima fisherman association and the public.
There are also thousands of bags in Fukushima filled with radioactive waste with no place to go and these bags are spread throughout the region making it a major health danger.
This government is a threat to the people of Japan and the world. The Abe government is also pushing for militarization and removal of Article 9 of the Japanese Constitution that prevents military interventions outside Japan.
They are also pushing for a new US military base in Okinawa despite the opposition of the mass of Okinawan people and the governor. This base would also have US nuclear ships and weapons which is presently against the US-Japan Security Agreement. The US has already violated this agreement many times and used Okinawa as a base for illegal wars around the world.
The majority of Japanese people are opposed to restarting Japan’s nuclear plants including the previous 3 prime ministers who are worried that Japan would be destroyed with another disaster like Fukushima. Again this shows that the Abe government has contempt for the people it supposedly represents. Join the rally and speak out.
The growing coronavirus pandemic is bringing Japan and the world to a global health threat and likely depression and yet the
Abe Japanese government wants more money for the Olympics and the remilitarization of Japan while cutting social services and housing subsidies for the refugees of Fukushima.
We must speak out NOW To Defend the People of Fukushima and The World
Stop The Restart of ALL Japan NUKE Plants
Defend the Children and People of Fukushima
No Olympic Baseball Games at Fukushima and Olympics in Japan
No Militarization and War In Asia
Money For Healthcare And Fighting Coronavirus For The People Of Japan & The World
For more event information:
Initiated by No Nukes Action
Code Pink Bay Area
United Public Workers For Action
Olympic torch relay faces cool welcome from nuclear evacuees in Fukushima
March 2, 2020 at 12:40 JST
FUTABA, Fukushima Prefecture--Dressed in protective plastic coveralls and white booties, Yuji Onuma stood in front of the row of derelict buildings that included his house, and sighed as he surveyed his old neighborhood.
On the once-bustling main street, reddish weeds poked out of cracked pavements in front of abandoned shops with caved-in walls and crumbling roofs. Nearby, thousands of black plastic bags filled with irradiated soil were stacked in a former rice field.
“It’s like visiting a graveyard,” he said.
Onuma, 43, was back in his hometown of Futaba to check on his house, less than 4 kilometers from the Fukushima nuclear power plant, which suffered a triple meltdown in 2011 following an earthquake and tsunami, leaking radiation across the region.
The authorities say it will be two more years before evacuees can live here again, an eternity for people who have been in temporary housing for nine years. But given the lingering radiation here, Onuma says he has decided not to move back with his wife and two young sons.
Most of his neighbors have moved on, abandoning their houses and renting smaller apartments in nearby cities or settling elsewhere in Japan.
Given the problems Futaba still faces, many evacuees are chafing over the government’s efforts to showcase the town as a shining example of Fukushima’s reconstruction for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
While there has been speculation that the global spread of the coronavirus that emerged in China last month might force the cancellation of the Olympics, Japanese officials have said they are confident the Games will go ahead.
The Olympic torch relay will take place in Fukushima in late March--although possibly in shortened form as a result of the coronavirus, Olympic organizers say--and will pass through Futaba. In preparation, construction crews have been hard at work repairing streets and decontaminating the center of town.
“I wish they wouldn’t hold the relay here,” said Onuma. He pointed to workers repaving the road outside the train station, where the torch runners are likely to pass. “Their number one aim is to show people how much we’ve recovered.”
He said he hoped that the torch relay would also pass through the overgrown and ghostly parts of the town, to convey everything that the 7,100 residents uprooted of Futaba lost as a result of the accident.
“I don’t think people will understand anything by just seeing cleaned-up tracts of land.”
In 2013, when Prime Minister Shinzo Abe was pitching Tokyo as the host of the 2020 Games to International Olympic Committee members, he declared that the situation at the Fukushima nuclear plant was “under control.”
The Games have been billed as the “Reconstruction Olympics”--an opportunity to laud Japan’s massive effort to rebuild the country’s northeastern region, ravaged by the earthquake and tsunami, as well as the meltdowns at the nuclear plant owned by Tokyo Electric Power Co.
After the disaster, the government created a new ministry to handle reconstruction efforts and pledged 32 trillion yen ($286.8 billion) in funding to rebuild affected areas.
Signs of the reconstruction efforts are everywhere near the plant: new roads have been built, apartment blocks for evacuee families have sprouted up and an imposing tsunami wall now runs along the coastline. An army of workers commutes to the wrecked plant every day to decommission the reactors.
In March, just days before the Olympic relay is scheduled to be held across Fukushima, Japan will partially ease a restriction order for Futaba, the last town that remains off-limits for residents to return.
This means that residents like Onuma will be able to freely come and go from the town without passing through security or changing into protective clothing. Evacuees will still not be able to stay in their homes overnight.
After a few years bouncing between relatives’ homes and temporary apartments, Onuma decided to build a new house in Ibaraki, a nearby prefecture. His two sons are already enrolled in kindergarten and primary school there.
“You feel a sense of despair,” said Onuma. “Our whole life was here, and we were just about to start our new life with our children.”
When Onuma was 12, he won a local competition to come up with a catchphrase promoting atomic energy. His words, “Nuclear Energy for a Brighter Future” was painted on an arch that welcomed visitors to Futaba.
After the nuclear meltdowns, the sign was removed against Onuma’s objections.
“It feels like they’re whitewashing the history of this town,” said Onuma, who now installs solar panels for a living.
The organizing committee for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics did not respond to requests for comment from Reuters.
Other residents and community leaders in nearby towns say the Olympics may have actually hindered the region’s recovery.
Yasushi Niitsuma, a 60-year-old restaurant owner in Namie, said the Olympics stalled local reconstruction projects because of surging demand and costs to secure workers and materials ahead of the games in Tokyo.
“We need to wait two years, three years to have a house built because of the lack of craftsmen,” said Niitsuma. “We are being put on the back burner.”
Fukushima’s agriculture and fisheries industries have also been devastated.
“I was astonished by the ‘under control’ comment made in a pitch to win the Olympic Games,” said Takayuki Yanai, who directs a fisheries co-op in Iwaki, 50 kilometers south of the nuclear plant, referring to Abe’s statement.
“People in Fukushima have the impression that reconstruction was used as a bait to win the Olympic Games.”
A government panel recently recommended discharging contaminated water held at the Fukushima plant to the sea, which Yanai expects to further hurt what remains of the area’s fisheries industry.
At a recent news conference, Reconstruction Minister Kazunori Tanaka responded to a question from Reuters about criticism from Fukushima evacuees.
“We will work together with relevant prefectures, municipalities and various organizations so that people in the region can take a positive view,” he said, referring to the Olympics.
Local officials also say they are making progress for the return of residents to Futaba.
“Unlike Chernobyl, we are aiming to go back and live there,” Futaba Mayor Shirou Izawa said in an interview, calling the partial lifting of the evacuation order a sign of “major progress.”
There were a lot of misunderstandings about the radiation levels in the town, including the safety of produce and fish from Fukushima, Izawa said.
“It would be great if such misunderstanding is dispelled even a little bit,” he said.
Radiation readings in the air taken in February near Futaba’s train station were around 0.28 microsieverts per hour, still approximately eight times the measurement taken on the same day in central Tokyo.
Another area in Futaba had a reading of 4.64 microsieverts per hour on the same day, meaning a person would reach the annual exposure upper limit of 1 millisievert, recommended by the International Commission on Radiological Protection, in just nine days.
Despite the official assurances, it’s hard to miss the signs of devastation and decay around town.
The block where Takahisa Ogawa’s house once stood is now just a row of overgrown lots, littered with concrete debris. A small statue of a stone frog is all that remains of his garden, which is also scattered with wild boar droppings.
He finally demolished his house last year after he failed to convince his wife and two sons to return to live in Futaba.
Ogawa doubts any of his childhood friends and neighbors would ever return to the town.
“I’ve passed the stage where I’m angry and I’m resigned,” he said.
Will coronavirus derail Tokyo Olympics? The Games are a giant petri dish
Ann Killion Feb. 26, 2020 Updated: Feb. 26, 2020 8:29 p.m.
Perhaps over coronavirus fears, two people wear masks at the Japan Olympic Museum in Tokyo on Sunday.Photo: Jae C. Hong / Associated Press
TOKYO, JAPAN - FEBRUARY 26: A woman wearing a face mask uses a smartphone as she takes a photograph in front of the Olympic rings at night on February 26, 2020 in Tokyo, Japan. Concerns that the Tokyo Olympics may be postponed or cancelled are increasing as Japan confirms 862 cases of Coronavirus (COVID-19) and as some professional sporting Photo: Tomohiro Ohsumi / Getty Images
People wearing face masks listen to a speech during a grand opening ceremony of the Ariake Arena, a venue for volleyball at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics and wheelchair basketball during the Paralympic Games, Sunday, Feb. 2, 2020, in Tokyo. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)Photo: Jae C. Hong / Associated Press
Financial markets have been disrupted. Industry is stalled. Travel plans are on hold.
No sector seems immune to the spread of the new coronavirus, including the sports world.
Competitions in Asia have been rescheduled. A soccer game in Italy will be played without spectators. But the biggest health issue for sports could be the Tokyo Olympics, scheduled to begin July 24, with an expected 11,000 athletes participating. The Paralympics take place a month later, with an additional 4,400 athletes.
Dick Pound, a longtime member of the International Olympic Committee, told the Associated Press this week that the question is being raised: “Is this under sufficient control that we can be confident about going to Tokyo or not?” Pound speculated that a decision would need to be made by late May. And, he added, if the Games are not deemed safe they would likely be canceled rather than postponed or relocated.
His words have had a ripple effect among athletes around the world, injecting a level of uncertainty into an event that many have spent a lifetime trying to reach.
On Wednesday, a day after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warned of a potential pandemic, Tokyo organizers tried to quell any rising panic.
“Our basic thoughts are that we will go ahead with the Olympic and Paralympic Games as scheduled,” Toshiro Muto, the CEO of the Tokyo organizing committee, said at a news conference in Japan. “For the time being, the situation of the coronavirus infection is, admittedly, difficult to predict, but we will take measures such that we’ll have a safe Olympic and Paralympic Games.”
The Olympics are one of the world’s largest petri dishes, a cauldron of cross-cultural germ-sharing. I’ve been to 11 Olympic Games and at every single one of them, illness — for athletes, media and spectators — has been an issue. People from around the globe are in close quarters, with varying levels of sanitary behavior. I got so ill in Beijing in 2008 that I thought I might have to come home. In 2016, some athletes and fans skipped the Rio Games for fear of the Zika virus.
The new coronavirus continues to spread, sickening more than 80,000 people and causing nearly 3,000 deaths. The outbreak began in China; Japan has almost 900 recorded cases to date.
Pound is known in Olympic circles as something of a loose cannon and his words were not an official statement. But he often expresses what others are thinking.
The U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Committee has been cautious about issuing any broad statements. A spokesperson told The Chronicle that the organization is taking a “fact-based approach” and has told athletes to follow the CDC advisory on travel.
On Wednesday, Rick Adams, the chief of sport performance, issued a communication that said, in part, “We will take every precautionary measure necessary to keep Team USA athletes and staff safe during the Games, and will continue to share updates such as they become available. We want every Team USA athlete and staff member to feel informed and empowered.”
Greg Massialas, the San Francisco-based coach of the U.S. Olympic foil fencing team, is following the developments closely. His son Alexander has already qualified for Tokyo along with teammate (also a San Francisco native) Gerek Meinhardt.
“For most Olympic athletes, they’ve been working towards this for a lifetime,” Greg Massialas said. “The mind-set has to be to you can only control the things you can control.”
Massialas is familiar with such uncertainty. When he was competing as a fencer, he fell victim to a “political virus,” in 1980, when the United States boycotted the Moscow Olympics over the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. That has given him a useful perspective to share with his athletes.
“Just focus on the right now,” he said. “That’s the way I operated in 1980.”
Massialas and his athletes recently returned to California from a three-week trip to competitions in Europe and Egypt, where they saw the early effects of the coronavirus. Visitors to Italy had their body temperature taken upon landing. Massialas’ wife, who is Chinese, was interrogated more closely than other visitors. The athletes from Asia were scrambling for extended-stay visas, because they knew if they went home they would face quarantine and would likely not be allowed to leave for future competitions.
Massialas said that, as of Wednesday, he had received no guidelines regarding the coronavirus from the USOPC. The IOC has said it will follow the guidelines of the World Health Organization.
Massialas is optimistic that the Games will go on, perhaps with more precautions to sequester the athletes.
But almost 8 million tickets to events have been made available and have reportedly almost sold out. That’s a lot of people, besides the athletes, in the world’s largest petri dish.
For the moment there doesn’t seem to be alternative plans. Tokyo would like to avoid the Olympic motto becoming “Faster, Higher, Stronger … Sicker.”
Ann Killion is a San Francisco Chronicle columnist. Email: akillion [at] sfchronicle.com Twitter: @annkillion
Japan PM Abe visits Futaba just days before anniversary of nuclear disaster pushing supposed “decontamination"
By NAOKI MATSUYAMA/ Staff Writer
March 7, 2020 at 18:30 JST
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe presents flowers on March 7 at a monument in a cemetery operated by the Namie town government. (Pool)
FUTABA, Fukushima Prefecture--Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on March 7 visited the virtual ghost town of Futaba, a once bustling community until the 2011 nuclear disaster hit and forced all the residents to evacuate.
His visit came four days before the ninth anniversary of the earthquake and tsunami disaster that triggered the crisis at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant, and just a few days after an evacuation order was lifted for a small portion of the town.
Futaba is one of two towns whose jurisdictions cover the crippled facility.
Speaking with reporters, Abe was upbeat about the prospects of Futaba eventually recovering its former self, saying, “The lifting of the evacuation order for part of Futaba is a major step forward toward full-scale reconstruction.”
He pledged that the government would continue with efforts to allow evacuees to return to the Hamadori district of Fukushima Prefecture facing the Pacific Ocean and which covers Futaba.
It was Abe’s 20th visit to Fukushima Prefecture and his first since April 2019.
He visited Futaba Station on the JR Joban Line, which will resume full service on March 14. An evacuation order for the area around the station was lifted March 4 to allow trains to run through it.
While much of Futaba is still classified as a “difficult-to-return zone” because of high radiation levels, the area around the station has been designated as a core component of special reconstruction work to allow residents to return.
Plans are afoot to lift the evacuation order for the entire special reconstruction work zone by spring 2022 so residents can begin returning.
Abe took a test run on the Joban Line and met with Futaba Mayor Shiro Izawa at the station platform, where Izawa explained what his town is doing to rebuild.
Abe told Izawa, “I hope many people will use the Joban Line to visit Futaba.”
Abe also attended a ceremony to mark the opening of the Joban-Futaba interchange along the Joban Expressway. He also attended an opening ceremony in Namie for an experimental facility designed to create hydrogen through solar power generation.
Abe stayed at the Tomioka Hotel on March 6 and chatted with the hotel owner and other local officials about the situation in the area all these years later.
Kansai Electric used local deputy mayor to seal shady land deal for nuke plant
THE ASAHI SHIMBUN
March 7, 2020 at 16:13 JST
The Takahama nuclear power plant operated by Kansai Electric Power Co. (Asahi Shimbun file photo)
An investigation by The Asahi Shimbun has shed light on how the deputy mayor of a town in Fukui Prefecture exerted an amazing level of influence over Kansai Electric Power Co. for decades.
It was already known that the late Eiji Moriyama distributed cash and lavish gifts to executives of Kansai Electric over many years. His first brush with the utility was when he helped to alleviate local opposition to building a nuclear power plant in Takahama, where he served as deputy mayor between 1977 and 1987. He died in March 2019 at the age of 90.
A third-party committee looking into the ties between Moriyama and Kansai Electric focused its attention on a real estate transaction in 1987 involving Kansai Electric and a Takahama harbor transport company. Kansai Electric ended up purchasing the land for about double the assessed value. Those with an insight into the transaction said Moriyama played a key mediating role in sealing the deal.
In addition to the ongoing committee investigation, The Asahi Shimbun obtained information that backs up the assertion of Moriyama being a key behind-the-scenes player.
Chimori Naito, who was a vice president at Kansai Electric between 1983 and 1987, let slip in an Asahi Shimbun interview in 2014 that the utility had requested Moriyama to intervene. Naito died in 2018.
The current chairman of the harbor transport company has also admitted in a recent interview that Moriyama helped to resolve the problems related to the acquisition of the land by Kansai Electric. That background was also revealed to the third-party committee, the chairman said.
The land in question is located about one kilometer north of the Takahama nuclear plant. The roughly 89,000-square-meter site is made up of forest and reclaimed land. Land records show that Kansai Electric acquired legal ownership of the plot in April 1987.
Based on land assessments of neighboring sites as well as the cost of land reclamation, the plot had a value of between 500 million yen and 600 million yen ($4.7 million and $5.7 million). The harbor transport company chairman also gave a similar explanation.
The harbor transport company stored lumber on the site after using soil and sand from the forested area to reclaim land along the coast. But after the No. 3 and No. 4 reactors at the Takahama plant came online in 1985, heated waste water from the plant raised the ocean temperature, which triggered the spread of shipworms, also known as termites of the sea because the bivalve mollusks eat into wood immersed in water.
The shipworms began damaging so much of the lumber stored by the harbor transport company that it fell into major financial difficulties.
Company officials pleaded with Kansai Electric for compensation because of the damage done to the lumber.
In the 2014 interview, Naito recalled how he told subordinates to never budge on those compensation claims.
“Compensation for heated waste water was completed with the construction of the plant,” Naito said at that time. “If we agreed to compensation, it could continue endlessly.”
But Naito did agree to meet with the then company president, the late father of the current chairman. The president said his company needed the money to stay afloat.
Naito agreed to provide money, but insisted it had to be totally unrelated to the heated waste water. Naito also sought a favor in return. When Naito learned that the company owned the lumber storage yard as well as land behind the Takahama plant, he proposed having the company sell the real estate to Kansai Electric.
According to the current company chairman, an asking price of about 1.23 billion yen was proposed to Kansai Electric, but it came back with an offer of about half that.
When negotiations became bogged down, Naito turned to Moriyama and asked him to intervene. Moriyama played a key role in ensuring that construction of the No. 3 and No. 4 reactors at Takahama went ahead.
The company chairman said that in summer 1986 Moriyama brought together the two sides and a deal was reached to sell the land to Kansai Electric for about 1.1 billion yen.
Under the land use and planning law of the time, any real estate transaction involving a plot of 10,000 square meters or more required the parties involved to report it to the prefectural government. This was so authorities could check that the price was in the same range as the value of nearby land. If the price was considered inappropriate, the prefectural government was empowered to recommend that the purchase not go ahead.
In the 2014 interview, Naito indicated that he asked Moriyama to discuss the matter with the Fukui prefectural government because, as he told the Asahi, the deal “was a circumvention of the law.”
Naito’s comment indicated that Moriyama somehow managed to obtain the consent of the Fukui prefectural government.
However, when asked about the land transaction, Fukui prefectural government officials said they were not aware of it.
Kansai Electric also refused to comment about any specific real estate transaction.
Kansai Electric has already admitted that 20 current and former executives and other officials received a total of 320 million yen in cash and gifts from Moriyama.
Kansai Electric Chairman Makoto Yagi resigned as a result and Shigeki Iwane is expected to resign as company president in the near future.
The third-party committee will release its report on March 14.
(This article was written by Hideki Muroya and Tomoya Nozaki.)
Japan pushes to remove Fukushima references from U.N. exhibition
MAR 3, 2020
The Foreign Ministry has pushed for references to the Fukushima nuclear disaster to be removed from an upcoming exhibition at the United Nations, an anti-nuclear group said Tuesday.
The Japan Confederation of A- and H-Bomb Sufferers Organizations is slated to mount the exhibition during the review conference for the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty from April 27 to May 22.
The ministry, which has supported the confederation’s three previous exhibitions, suggested it could withdraw its backing unless the requested changes are made, said Sueichi Kido, the group’s secretary general.
The exhibition in the lobby of the U.N. headquarters in New York will consist of around 50 panels mainly describing the horrors of nuclear weapons, including the aftermath of the 1945 atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
Two of the panels will touch on the nuclear disasters at the Fukushima No. 1 power plant in 2011 and Ukraine’s Chernobyl power plant in 1986.
According to Kido, the ministry argues the panels contradict the spirit of the nonproliferation treaty, which allows for the peaceful use of nuclear technology.
A ministry official said its support for the exhibition was under review and declined to confirm whether any pressure had been applied to change its content.
Kido said there had been a “breach of trust” and the confederation, which represents survivors of the atomic bombings, plans to hold the exhibition as planned with or without the ministry’s support.
“Atomic bombs and nuclear accidents are the same in the sense that they cause harm through radiation. As a victim of atomic bombing, Japan has a responsibility to work toward the elimination of nuclear weapons,” Kido added.
Added to the calendar on Saturday Mar 7th, 2020 4:31 PM
The nuclear olympics
A protest took place in front of the Azuma stadium in Fukushima where the Olympics are supposed to take place. The Abe government is pretending that they can go forward despite the coronavirus pandemic and radioactive dangers.