Sunday, March 26, 2017

Fukushima Refugees: Decontamination in "Difficult To Return to Zones"

You've probably read that Japan is lifting some of the evacuation orders for areas contaminated by Fukushima Daiichi:

Chikako Kawahara and Osamu Uchiyama. (February 28, 2017). SIX YEARS AFTER: 4 more districts in Fukushima set to be declared safe to return to. The Asahi Shimbun,
Evacuation orders will be lifted shortly [April 1] for four more municipalities in Fukushima Prefecture, but the prospect of residents returning to their old homes in huge numbers seems unlikely. ...The government intends to pay for the decontamination of certain areas within that zone so former residents can return. According to one estimate, the program would only cover about 5 percent of the entire area that is designated as difficult to return.

Notice that the government is not paying for ALL of the decontamination work and, as this article below argues, has no solution for managing radioactive waste:

Decontamination work in Fukushima Pref. far from finished business (March 11, 201). The Mainichi,

... the government's decontamination plan in this prefecture is fast approaching the end of its first phase at the end of March.  As a consequence of the decontamination project -- and the fact that radioactive material decays over time -- radiation levels in Fukushima Prefecture have declined to some extent.
However, in certain areas of the prefecture, radiation levels continue to be high, and the issue of what to do with decontamination waste still needs to be tackled. The government does plan to carry out decontamination work in the neglected "difficult-to-return" evacuation zones in fiscal 2017, but local residents are skeptical that the end is near.

To date, the Environment Ministry has carried out decontamination work in 11 municipalities across the prefecture subject to evacuation orders. However, no decontamination has been done yet in the "difficult-to-return" zones. In other municipalities, where the radiation dose is 0.23 microsieverts per hour or higher, decontamination work has been performed by the relevant local government office. 
This is a concerning set of articles. Local officials are responsible for clean-up of areas measuring up to 20 millisieverts a year of annual "external" exposure.

I don't know whether the money for local officials' clean-up efforts comes from national government or from TEPCO. I certainly hope that local officials don't have to bear those costs directly.

Can you imagine having your environment contaminated, being forced to leave because of that contamination and becoming stigmatized in the process?

Then you are encouraged to return to regions that are patchily decontaminated, with rains and winds continuously distributing radioactive particles throughout the environment.

And you are told that, by the way, ongoing contamination efforts will be the responsibility of your community and there still is no solution for the piles and piles of radioactive waste stuffed into what appear to be plastic trash bags.

Of course, this approach to managing radioactive waste has been ongoing since the age of fission began, with all countries participating in the nuclear club liable for disregarding the full scale of health and reproductive impacts produced by chronic exposure to "low-level" radioactive waste, waste for which there is no lasting solution.


  1. I wish there were a solution for these people, for the children in Yemen, for the people in Syria, for all those caught in human trafficking . . . and many others. For most it will be death that brings peace and not life.

  2. Not that a nasty trump troll, like you or the stock, would ever advocate humantitarian. No lets arm Japan with nuclear bombs. A selfish person like you could never stick-their-neck-out for anything that smells of humanity or humanitarianism.

  3. It is called sociopathy. selfish, self-righteous stooge.

  4. Sociopaths, who write trash on articles written by people who care about to fukushima evacuees, are small little things.

    It would be interesting to see what the sociopathic little piggies like, St. George and the stock, would do or say if one of them, or a family member, were forced to relocate back to fukushima prefecture.

    No conscience. They would squeel like the little piggies they are if forced to move there or work at daiichi. It shows what a vile little piggy st george is. He is a true socioppath to have placed such a comment response here. Of cource , this is the same vile creep, who said it would be ok for a white supremecist to rig a large x-ray emitter, to kill people of color.

  5. Please stop the personal attacks. Let us be civil in our disagreements. Please. Its the only way forward.

  6. A lot of peole are working to stop the Japanese government from moving evacuees back to fukushima. Some of us have relatives in japan or by fukushima who have stayed. The ignorance, sociopathic nature, and meanness of the remark "I wish there was a solution for these people, death is good for them" is horrible majia.The solution is to not force them back to fukushima for their propaganda purposes. it is genocide.

    1. Although I don't always agree with William, I am pretty sure that wasn't what he had in mind when he wrote that "For most it will be death that brings peace and not life."

      It is a sick world indeed that affords people peace only upon their death. Yet that is the kind of world we create for some through exploitative and/or exclusionary social relations.

      Imagine what a consensus-based approach would look like as compared to the current efforts by the government to move people back.

      A consensus based approach would bring in many types of experts to evaluate the range of risks and to consider the costs and benefits of a variety of alternatives.

      The people affected would have the ultimate decision-making authority since they would have to bear the risk.

  7. From enenews.This is from a poster from South Africa who has been posting to highlight a petition to the south african govt to not build the nuclear power plants there that are being so heavily pushed.

    Farthington MacMananus

    MARCH 30, 2017 AT 11:01 PM LOG IN TO REPLY

    Thanks to Sherri P. (from America) who signed that petition recently, I suspect she is possibly an ENEnews reader. Just posting this to say thanks, if it means anything and she possibly sees it.

    The stock posts anything it wants anywhere it wants. It even switches blogs to mess with people.

    The stock goads and harrasses people. This is what it said to farthington.


    MARCH 30, 2017 AT 4:47 PM LOG IN TO REPLY

    Sorry Anus, but your meme is not a benefit.

    The stock can post extremist political crud anywhere it wants. It can advocate for slave labor to cleanup nuclear messes. For arming japan with nuks. There is free speech and people have a right to stand up to bullies and people who advocate genocide.


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