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Gov't may buy land within 20-km radiation no-go zone

45 Comments

The Japanese government is considering buying the land within the 20-km exclusion zone around the crippled Fukushima Daichi nuclear power plant. Reconstruction Minister Tatsuo Hirano, who visited Fukushima Prefecture on Sunday, said that due to extremely high levels of radiation within the 20-km zone, it may be unsafe for residents to return to their homes for a long time.

Meanwhile, NHK reported that Prime Minister Naoto Kan will visit Fukushima on Aug 27 and meet with Fukushima Gov Yuehi Sato to explain the government's policy.

The decision to buy the land from evacuated residents comes as part of the government's long-term strategy toward stabilizing the nuclear plant's cooling systems, achieving cold shutdown and finally beginning the decommissioning process, a process that could take at least a decade.

Hirano told NHK that in order to support those displaced by the disaster, the administration will have to buy the land and compensate the residents as well as build permanent housing for evacuees.

A government report projected that radiation accumulated over one year at 22 monitoring sites within roughly 20 kilometers of the nuclear plant would be at least five times higher than the international safety standard.

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45 Comments
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Sounds sensible to me. The residents get compensated, and Japan gets some well-deserved nature reserve.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

According to sampling being conducted by private residents,we might be seeing some parts of Tokyo (in the east) and Saitama prefecture being declared off limits in the future too?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Why should our tax money be used for this? TEPCO should be buying the damn land!!

And Will, if you would like to go to this nature reserve, be my guest. I will stay well clear of it. It is after all, a no-go zone.

2 ( +6 / -4 )

tmarie:

Tepco is pretty much bankrupt after this. And the area around Chernobyl is now a nature preserve. Teeming with beautiful wildlife. Actually, people go on tours there. And that is Chernobyl... the contamination around Fukushima is obviously nowhere even close that.

-5 ( +3 / -8 )

Credible scientists are now saying the radiation of Fukushima has already surpassed Chernobyl. Let's stick to the scientific facts and not distort reality, people.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Credible scientists are now saying the radiation of Fukushima has already surpassed Chernobyl. Let's stick to the scientific facts and not distort reality, people.

I believe you, but I would love to see a reference if you have one.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

ABOUT BLOODY TIME! Doh!

1 ( +2 / -1 )

SquidBert - Dr Kodoma, head of radioisotope studies at Tokyo University is famous for his comments on this. Check out YouTube for more info.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

This seems like a good idea, though it might be good to make an optional offer to those a bit farther out from the exclusion zone as well.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Thanks, horrified.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

The decision to buy the land from evacuated residents comes as part of the government’s long-term strategy toward stabilizing the nuclear plant’s cooling systems, achieving cold shutdown and finally beginning the decommissioning process, a process that could take at least a decade.

The strategy is really to sustain waning support for nuclear power generation. People who live near nuke plants want to know that the government will bail them out if things go pear-shaped. Personally I'd feel safer living near a nuke plant than near a coal plant or trash incineration plant.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Credible scientists are now saying the radiation of Fukushima has already surpassed Chernobyl.

Do you have any written studies supporting your point?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

How convenient and not in the least arrogant to make a "20-km radiation no-go zone. Radioactive contamination follows water and wind currents,is carried by truck,plane and ship to uncontaminated areas,is present in our bones long after death and can be measured even then. PPrefectures outside this zone have been documented as being contaminated-this zone extends into metropolitan Tokyo as well.

For reference in detail-

http://www.radiationdefense.jp/faq

0 ( +1 / -1 )

"...said that due to extremely high levels of radiation within the 20-km zone, it may be unsafe for residents to return to their homes for a long time."

Other nations, or at least their nationals, have been saying this for five months, and they're only coming to this conclusion now?? Of course, I notice it's accompanied by the usual 'possibility', which means panels and discussions.

Of course they have to buy the land from the people! But before they start using our taxes, they have to glean every last yen out of TEPCO, and ensure there are no golden parachutes when the company folds. Ah, but that would be the RIGHT thing to do.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Um, buy the land and the house whether it still stands or not. Let them buy their own new land and their own house with that money. No need to build new houses, unless they pay, as this country is littered with empty ones. Also, pass legistation to reduce the price of land and housing in this country as its been overpriced for years.

We all take risks concerning where we live, and I chose to live far away from the beach for a reason. So having my tax money build new houses for these people just seems like way too much. They can live in an old house at my expense though.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Here you can listen to Professor Kodama and read English subtitles if you click CC.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dlf4gOvzxYc

Interesting that he claims the rise in radiation levels in Tokyo must have come from a release of radioactive materials at Tokaimura in Ibaraki rather than from Fukushima. Tokaimura is famous for having a critical mass happen outside of containment which lasted for 20 hours which caused an evacuation 1999.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Good point Oracle! Mind you, if the house doesn't stand, that isn't Tepco's fault - tsunami or earthquake.

Insurance plus money from TEPCO plus this? I know a house/memories/goods can't be replaced but wow, rather generous - and with again, our tax money.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

TEPCO is responsible for their plants. They should buy the land and compensate the former residents there. I dont see any reason why tax payers money should be used for this.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

"may buy" is the key, it's like saying I might buy Tepco, but I think I'll look at all other options first.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

These people had little choice as to the building of a N-reactor in their neighborhood. We all know that! It's failed on a scale that will be the bench mark for further "accidents". A little compassion...the Government and the whole society also are to blame, and both should support those most effected by this. Many people both in Japan and internationally have been warning for years that the N-industry in Japan is unsafe, not including what happened. If a plant blew up next to you- a plant you had NO say over. Destroyed your house, posed a threat to your children's health and stopped your income, after paying taxes for years, I would expect some compensation.

We are in this together and to deny those most affected a semblance of balance I feel is wrong. The money cost can be made up, the moral cost can not.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Wow! We are gonna pay for the land around this old, crappy nuclear reactor?? The Japanese government meas OUR MONEY!! OUR TAXES!! How nice of the J government to say they are going to compensate these people up in Fukushima with the TAXES from the rest of us all over JAPAN!

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Elbudo:

" The Japanese government meas OUR MONEY!! OUR TAXES! "

Everything every government does is done with taxpayers money. That is redundant to state that. Now, compensating the victims of a massive natural disaster is something that the tax paying population can reasonably be asked to do. Who knows, you might be the next victim, what would you say then?

This completely different from the government pork that we rightfully complain about.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

can the diet make ishihara the governor for life of this property? so his addled brain can't effect anyone.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Oracle

Also, pass legistation to reduce the price of land and housing in this country as its been overpriced for years.

no thanks to that idea, i dont want to loose large amounts of money on my property coz you have silly ideas.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Welcome news for evacuees at last. I wish them the very best now and in the future

1 ( +1 / -0 )

The Japanese government meas OUR MONEY!! OUR TAXES!!

Taxes are not OUR money. It's THEIRS.

-4 ( +1 / -4 )

ExportExpertAug. 22, 2011 - 07:23PM JST

i dont want to loose large amounts of money on my property

Well tough. If you bought property in Japan and Japan has a disaster and desperate people, I guess you bought in the wrong place.

coz you have silly ideas.

No. Coz people are in need and neither you nor I are. I also own property here.

Also, I never said it had to be permanent. And you won't lose cash unless you sell. I don't plan to sell. If you do, then I assume your property is more an investment than a residence. If so, you already took a hit, probably can't sell right now anyway, if you did its because you can take the loss, and if you had the extra cash to make the investment, you don't need the property or the money but others do.

In other words, there is no way I am going to sympathize with people who own excess property while others life in school gymnasiums and tents.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

more than 20km should just be fenced off and sown with hemp seed.The hemp could then be used as biomass (if proper filtration could be safely achieved)

1 ( +2 / -1 )

The worst part about this is that TEPCO is NOT bankrupt, when they should be. There's no way the government (and by extension, taxpayers) should be footing the bill until Tepco goes under. Giving Tepco a bailout, which the government has already been in effect doing, is paramount to condoning evil corporate governance.

The stock has of course fallen quite a bit, but it's actually back up from its June lows, and is still valued at 700+ billion yen. Think how much land that could buy.

http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/quote?ticker=9501:JP

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Stop being selfish people. Everything around you is paid for by tax money. It is called living in a society.

1 ( +5 / -3 )

The lands value would be incredibly cheap

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Believe it when I hear confirmed evidence that money was paid. Govt should buy land and use it to store waste and decommissioned nuclear power station parts. TEPCO must pay compensation for everything else(house, income, psychological effects, personal effects and relocation allowance). Tax must be increased and training done for up to 2 million victims who will develop servere medical conditions.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

The title implicates the authority's justification for destroying local communities under the pretext of land takeover. The same thing happened to Kobe and its neighboring towns at the time of 1995 Great Hanshin Earthquake. Very sad.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Japan is doing the right thing. Very good.

Pray for Japan

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Life is a chance kids at many things. You win, you lose. If you do not want to pay Japanese taxes but want to live here...option one, do not work...option two, open your own business. It works

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

can they build a solar farm on the land?! good use of masses of space, and the radiation wouldnt harm the solar power...

2 ( +2 / -0 )

If J-goverment decides to buy land near Fukushima, what about the victim of tsunami in Northern Japan? The plans are that new cities and infastructures will be built on a higher grounds. Will the J-goverment compensate these people that lost their homes so they can move into new property or will they debate for years or decades? Most likely the J-goverment will debate for many years until these old folks will die off one and one and compensation will be reduced to minimum.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

20km... Around Chernobyl 30km but some old people never leave theirs homes and continuous living now. After some years in 20km area will be prosper nature because there will be less people.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@WilliBAug. 22, 2011 - 02:11PM JST

respect!

+5!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@lbuda MexicanoAug. 22, 2011 - 06:11PM JST

Some month ago people of Japan was BUY electricity energy from Fukushima without pretension. You can not buy atomic energy.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

yay! Another nature preserve just like Chernobyl

0 ( +0 / -0 )

more than 20km should just be fenced off and sown with hemp seed.The hemp could then be used as biomass (if proper filtration could be safely achieved)

What, like a water pipe?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I wonder if they'll get fair market value.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I wonder if they'll get fair market value.

Fair market value is zilch, so I imainge they'll get more than that.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

A lot of online news sources are saying the government is considering paying the landowners 'rent' for the next 10 years. I suppose that would be a lot cheaper for the government in the long run. If that is true, it will be sad for the owners who have to deal with worthless land after 10 years. It all depends on how much rent the government is willing to fork over.

And fair market value would be assessed at the rate before the accident; not after. But land prices have been dropping in Tohoku for the last few years, anyhow. I'm sure people in the area were not getting much more than 150,000yen/tsubo up to March of this year.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

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