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Nuclear refugees face dilemma over returning home

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The government will declare it safe

Well that makes it all better now doesn't it.

11 ( +12 / -1 )

I love Japan but the government here can't be trusted as far as you can throw them. It's amazing they haven't firewalled the net yet.

18 ( +19 / -1 )

A year after that, the monthly 100,000 yen in “psychological compensation” that plant operator Tokyo Electric Power Co (TEPCO) has been ordered to pay to evacuees, will cease.

¥100,000 doesn't go very far when you're expected to go on about life in an empty town. Supermarkets? Schools? Where's the money for those, guys? Should be ¥1,000,000 a month for what these people have been forced to go through (resulting from the gross negligence of TEPCO I might add). Meanwhile TEPCO makes record profits & goes on without a single legal challenge...

7 ( +11 / -4 )

It wouldn't be much of a dilemma for me-return to radioactive danger or not to....

4 ( +5 / -2 )

And what about if there's another accident for example, when pulling the fuel rods, evacuate again? It's all a prelude to the Olympics so that Abe can claim that everything is under control. It's disgusting what the victims have to live through. This is Abe's "beautiful Japan."

6 ( +9 / -2 )

If he has to go back - make some soba then invite TEPCO execs along with the J-govt officials who said everything is ok to eat it. Put little placards in front of each bowl saying where the ingredients came from (clearly naming the most hazardous areas). If the come and eat it make sure that you say in front of the TV audiences "oh since you like it so much I will be expecting you to bring your families EACH YEAR".

8 ( +10 / -2 )

The government here never learns from it's mistakes of covering things up. When the mercury poisoning happened decades ago, the government along with big business covered it up until children were being born with devastating birth defects.

They are in effect forcing these people back to inhabitable areas and these people very well may have children or grandchildren that could be born with defects due to over-exposure to radiation.

The government should just buy all the owners out at pre-disaster rates, and help them to resettle elsewhere permanently. The land should be left to return to the wild and heal itself over time.

4 ( +6 / -3 )

People, animals and fauna have much more tolerance than is noted in scientific studies. The earth has been doing this to humans for a long time.

I think for each returnee, one upper level govt. worker should accompany them and we test the situation.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

@JapanGal

Fauna are animals.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

**The government here never learns from it's mistakes of covering things up. When the mercury poisoning happened decades ago, the government along with big business covered it up until children were being born with devastating birth defects.

Chisso Corporation was responsible for that. In addition to that, the president at that time who later became chairman Yutaka Egashira (Later maternal grandfather of Masako, Crown Princess of Japan) used yakuza in order to threaten and silence patients and their supporters. Looking at the strong arm way the Abe government has cooperated with TEPCO tells you that some things never change.

5 ( +5 / -1 )

This is all about saving money for the company and the government, and that's all. Yet another way Japan Inc has stolen their lives, their reputations, and now taking what it owes them for doing it and they can say, "Hey, it's there choice!"

7 ( +9 / -2 )

oh freakin god you can never trust greenpeace - they will always monkey the data

if you are left with greenpeace and the government and you are so deadset against the government then do not trust either- greenpeace is the road to ruin. it never has your life in your life in mind- you are always a pawn in it 's game.

so many people did their best with decontamination, there are few options- except for oil and coal. - get your minds around that- wind, wave, thermal, sun - none of those will ever power an industrial county fully or even in a large degree.

so if you are willing to go back to life in the early 1900's in regards to electric use- then you can go green. but that means no electric, no phone, no ac , no refrigerator

-11 ( +1 / -12 )

I know luca.. mispelled flora changed to fauna

2 ( +2 / -0 )

The picture of the plastic garbage bags placed in an orderly pile on the side of the road CLEARLY indicates that the area is safe to return to!!

This cleanup has gone above and beyond guidelines for treating nuclear waste.

The governbent has said so too but, if you need proof just look at the pictures! It's allllllll clean folks!

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

I don't know who is more tolerable government or radiation. They (politicians/TEPCO) are making example out of peaceful protestors.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

No way I trust TEPCO. The Chernobyl experience puts paid to any assurances the government gives. Such a tragedy but I wouldn't go back either.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

More importantly is the economics of the area will not recover for a long time even if decontamination had been successful. Most Japanese are not going to want to visit the area and many of the past habits will refuse to return for good reason. So any business that does restart is likely collapse again for lack of business Now one possibility is that all govern officials pushing putting people back there should have to move there themselves to the area and do regular business in the area to help the local economy. I am sure none of these officials will have any problem helping personally, with their families, as it is perfectly safe to live there. Everyone will praise the government officials who move there for their patriotic zeal.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

@sandhonour

If he has to go back - make some soba then invite TEPCO execs along with the J-govt officials who said everything is ok to eat it. Put little placards in front of each bowl saying where the ingredients came from (clearly naming the most hazardous areas). If the come and eat it make sure that you say in front of the TV audiences "oh since you like it so much I will be expecting you to bring your families EACH YEAR".

Don't forget to feature the Johnny's Jimusho members eating said food (placards in full view, of course) with zoom ups on said food for each & every mouthful, followed by a jubilant 'UMAI'! Someone's gotta keep this 'don't worry it's safe' propaganda machine rolling!

1 ( +2 / -1 )

What to do. It atill better than third world country refugee living condition. Thats life. Expect goverment or compensator to relieve a still digruntled refugees. It happen so dont have to be sulky on demands. As long you have own land n property to go back, i will go back. Not goverment fault or public fault that these refugees seek to sulk. Theres many lost lives and they move on. If this folks dont change and adapt or appreciate wht they have now, how to expect japan to move forward. Move on please

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

This is crime against humanity plain & simple!

JAPANESE PEOPLE if you didn't know before you SHOULD know NOW your govt holds you all in such low regard, same as lab rats, this is disgusting & a new phase of disaster.

tepco should have been FORECD to buy ALL these evacuee's properties/assets & THEN the people can decide whether to stay or move elsewhere, now many will be forced to return & the Y100,000/mth pittance disappears & no doubt we will here a lot gambarre & assorted BS chants

This is truly awful!

5 ( +7 / -2 )

@praack. If the Japanese government was to invest money into renewables it could 65 percent power itself within 3-5 years using the continated 30 km radius. You'd be surprised what could be done if they put the time money and effort in. Infortunately it would cost so much to bring the national grid up to significant storage ability it isn't going to happen. And Tepco are not in a position to do it unless there is private funding. Unfortunately again this won't happen because the Japanese Government are Tepco's largest share holder and highly likely to veto any private funds taking a cut of their cake.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

"Meltdowns in three of the reactors—20 kilometers away—blanketed vast tracts of land with isotopes of iodine and cesium, products of nuclear reactions that are hazardous to health if ingested, inhaled or absorbed. "

http://enenews.com/category/more/health

http://netc.com/

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Naraha will become a boom place. Those who sell out will at a substantially reduce prices. There will be a population that will snap up very cheap accommodation and start new businesses. If I was a company looking at relocating Naraha would be the first place I would be looking at. So I see a positive future for Naraha.

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

The Scientist and Experts in this problematic area, argue that Japan has a high chance of being uninhabitable in 5- 10 years, from the dispersed isotopes, and resulting contamination:

http://www.infowars.com/u-s-army-general-the-whole-northern-hemisphere-is-at-risk-of-becoming-largely-uninhabitable/

https://independentaustralia.net/business/business-display/fukushima-meltdown--caldicott-says-japan-may-become-uninhabitable--media-silent,3442

2 ( +5 / -3 )

blanketed vast tracts of land with isotopes of iodine and cesium, products of nuclear reactions that are hazardous to health if ingested, inhaled or absorbed.

The Iodine-131 is long gone. It has a half-life of 40 days.

Greenpeace’s new study, published Tuesday, says only a quarter of Iitate has been decontaminated—predominantly roads, homes and a short buffer strip of woodland around inhabited areas.

So, don't go into the woods.

“Levels of radiation in both decontaminated and non-decontaminated areas… make a return of the former inhabitants of Iitate not possible from a public health… perspective,”

That should be modified:

“Levels of radiation in both decontaminated and non-decontaminated areas… make a return of the former inhabitants of Iitate not desirable from Greenpeace's need to keep hyping radiation fears

Fuzzylogic,

The Scientist and Experts in this problematic area, argue that Japan has a high chance of being uninhabitable in 5- 10 years, from the dispersed isotopes, and resulting contamination

Sorry, those people are talking out their arses.

-7 ( +2 / -9 )

@Star-viking, U may think so:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gBkky3VHrkA

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4ITrXVJMKeQ

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iwg0r9R1aFE

0 ( +1 / -1 )

If the government is giving the green light to return to this area, then with the power vested in me I declare the town of Pripyat safe as well.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Zichi,

first, you got a thumbs up from me for pointing out that error. Good job.

I think cases like Iitate Village are difficult and because its a small village the whole village needs to declared off limits for the very distant future. Can't expect residents to return to one-third or two-thirds of the village but stay away from the other one-third. Similar situation in Minamisoma.

I think it would depend on where the population is located. There are plenty of villages in Tohoku which could cope with not having access to one third of their area. In fact, some places are trying to limit the populated areas to cut down on the expenses of maintaining access to services in winter.

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

Safe to return? What's the half-life of most radioactive fallout contaminants?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

ZIchi,

You said that you can't expect residents to return to one-third or two-thirds of the village but stay away from the other one-third.

I have a lot of experience of small Tohoku towns and villages. You certainly can stay away from large areas of these municipalities, and in fact, that is what largely is happening as they shrink from population loss: outlying areas shrivel up as people move to the centre.

The only way radiation would be a factor, according to your outline, would be if the centre of the municipality was in the no-go zone.

-6 ( +0 / -6 )

And so this is a surprise why exactly? Look who the PM Abe is tied to - Remember the maxim: Follow the money.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Yubaru: Agree, but the govt should force TEPCO to buy the land at pre-disaster rates, not the govt. If TEPCO says they can't afford, the govt should nationalize it and call for TEPCO board elections from those who use the service.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

This is a terrible situation. Those poor people.

Regional pride can be very strong, especially in the countryside, and I hope people can come to decisions without being overly influenced by it.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

If I were a former resident of an evacuated area, I think I would have given up long ago on the notion of some day moving back. As difficult as that may be, I think the sooner you move on, the better.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I think cases like Iitate Village are difficult and because its a small village the whole village needs to declared off limits for the very distant future. Can't expect residents to return to one-third or two-thirds of the village but stay away from the other one-third. Similar situation in Minamisoma.

Perhaps we've been to different parts of Minami Soma. From my travels there, it's a very large geographical area and quite large areas are well below legal safe limits. Hence the reason it wasn't completely evacuated and why there are a large number of temporary communities there to cover for other areas.

What's your first hand experience in Minami-Soma?

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Heda,

Don't you know, our experience of Tohoku disqualifies us from making comments based on our experiences.

Perhaps we've been to different parts of Minami Soma. From my travels there, it's a very large geographical area and quite large areas are well below legal safe limits. Hence the reason it wasn't completely evacuated and why there are a large number of temporary communities there to cover for other areas.

Zichi,

Before the nuclear disaster people travelled from A to B in a straight line but now in that part of Fukushima isn't always the case because of the number of no go areas. Radiation in Iitate in 2011 reached more than 50 microsieverts per hour. I don't know the exact zoning without checking but I think the highest levels of radiation were in the south part of the town.

That will be a factor, but in most cases alternate routes are available.

Iitate is a mountain place, probably more than 80% is mountainous with some peaks up to 1,000 meters. Date is to the west and Minamisoma to the east. All of these areas had serious radiation contaminations. Mostly farming areas which will be difficult if not impossible for returning residents to restart.

Farming is going on in Iitate now.

Near impossible to decontaminate the mountain areas and totally wrong to tell residents not to go into them to collect wild foods or whatever.

Oh, it's wrong to tell the residents not to collect wild food? Is it also wrong to warn people of hazards?

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Yes Zichi I have been to Minami Soma on many occasions. There is no reason to close the entire city because parts of it are off limits. It has continued to function since March 11 and the residents have more than coped.

You post seemed to suggest that the residents shouldn't have that opportunity and the city should have been closed off.

Which is ludicrous.

Now perhaps your experience in Minami Soma is different to mine and I would love to hear how your first hand experience differs.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

Can't expect residents to return to one-third or two-thirds of the village but stay away from the other one-third. Similar situation in Minamisoma.

No. What you said above suggests people should only be where the whole village is open. Can't expect people to stay away from 1/3 of a village.

Yet it's happened since March 2011 and I wonder how someone in Kobe whose never been to the region, can sit behind a keyboard and make such claims?

Minami Soma has functioned as an incomplete city since March 2011. To suggest otherwise or to suggest that people should only be allowed to return to a whole city or village is ridiculous.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

zichi and Heda_Madness, please do not address each other any further on this thread, since all you are doing is bickering.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

It takes hundreds to thousands of years for radiation to decay to safe levels. Radiation will damage the chromosomes or genes of exposed people causing cancers, deformities, mutations especially in fetus or babies, and so on. It will be wise for the exposed people to get government help to relocate elsewhere "permanently". The air, water, soil, etc, around the reactor areas are radioactive.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

"“You cannot work on a farm, you cannot grow rice, and you cannot pick wild plants either,” said Yamauchi,"

How is this a habitable environment?

Chernobyl Exclusion Zone, 30 Kilometers Zone, Fukushima Exclusion Zone, 20 km (30 km voluntary).

Fukushima decommissioning is likely to take 30 to 40 years. Chernobyl a Safe Confinement structure is under construction and expected to be completed in 2015 from the April 26, 1986 event, 29 years later.

Nuclear power has the potential to leave Fukushima, like Chernobyl, a stark, abandoned and uninhabitable desert that continues to dump nuclear destruction into the Pacific. Moving people in while the reactor continues to belch radioactive water into the sea also makes the sea an uninhabitable.

"“You cannot work on a farm, you cannot grow rice, and you cannot pick wild plants either,” said Yamauchi,"

How is this a habitable environment?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Barbara,

It takes hundreds to thousands of years for radiation to decay to safe levels. Radiation will damage the chromosomes or genes of exposed people causing cancers, deformities, mutations especially in fetus or babies, and so on. It will be wise for the exposed people to get government help to relocate elsewhere "permanently". The air, water, soil, etc, around the reactor areas are radioactive.

Really? But the I-131 is virtually gone, and the Cs-134 has decrease to 1/8 of initial levels. As for chromosomal damage, what about all the chemicals which are worse for that, the stuff which comes from burning coal and has no half-life?

kcjapan,

Nuclear power has the potential to leave Fukushima, like Chernobyl, a stark, abandoned and uninhabitable desert that continues to dump nuclear destruction into the Pacific. Moving people in while the reactor continues to belch radioactive water into the sea also makes the sea an uninhabitable.

The damage at Dai-ichi has been done, and yet Fukushima is not a stark, abandoned and uninhabitable desert. Actually, neither is Chernobyl.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

"It takes 10 decades for an isotope to completely decay, thus the approximately 30-year half-lives for Sr-90 and Cs-137 mean it will take nearly three centuries before they have decayed, a mere blink of the eye when compared to Plutonium-239 (Pu-239) with a half-life of 24,100 years."

"The human and economic costs are enormous: In the first 25 years, the direct economic damage to Belarus, Ukraine and Russia has exceeded $500 billion. To mitigate some of the consequences, Belarus spends about 20 percent of its national annual budget"

Some happily minimize the devastation of nuclear disasters like Chernobyl because facing the overwhelming facts and costs of these disasters is one way to ignore reality. The weird part is few can understand why such self delusion is of any use.

"we're certainly seeing the example of that now at the 25th anniversary of Chernobyl. That pollution occurs all along the fuel cycle, from the time we dig it out of the ground, the tailings that are left and expose people to radon, to the proliferation of nuclear weapons, to the production of fuel, and then we don't know where to bury the waste or what to do with it. And now we're seeing the catastrophic release of radiation once again, which happened at Kyshtym in Russia, happened in Chernobyl, and now is happening in Fukushima—and will happen again."

For those who wish to peek behind the veil of ignorance details cited here are supported at http://www.ratical.org/radiation/Chernobyl/. For others, why bother, self delusion is more profitable and fun. Too bad about the babies deformed by the nuclear disasters of Chernobyl and Fukushima.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

kcjapan,

You should check the source of your quotes, they contradict themselves. This for example:

It takes 10 decades for an isotope to completely decay, thus the approximately 30-year half-lives for Sr-90 and Cs-137 mean it will take nearly three centuries before they have decayed, a mere blink of the eye when compared to Plutonium-239 (Pu-239) with a half-life of 24,100 years."

So isotopes definitely take 10 decades to decay, but Pu-239 takes much, much more? Self-contradicting quote.

That pollution occurs all along the fuel cycle, from the time we dig it out of the ground, the tailings that are left and expose people to radon, to the proliferation of nuclear weapons, to the production of fuel, and then we don't know where to bury the waste or what to do with it.

The danger from radon is from it seeping up from the ground into houses. It getting dispersed in the atmosphere is very low risk. In fact, that is how radon in high risk areas is dealt with: ventilation releasing it into the atmosphere. As for nuclear weapons, most nuclear plants are ill-suited for the production of fissile material: too much pu-240 is generated, and that is bad if you want things to go boom. As for waste, there isn't that much, people do know what to do with it, and there's much more radioactive wastenin coal plant tailings, and mercury and arsenic to boot.

Too bad about the babies deformed by the nuclear disasters of Chernobyl and Fukushima.

Babies deformed by Fukushima? Are you getting news that none of the rest of us are? As for Chernobyl, are you aware of the poor industrial environnment in the former Soviet Union? Are you aware of photos of deformed kids, held by mothers with the same deformation - showing that the deformation is an inherited one, not a radiogenic one?

You need to be more critical in your analysis of your sources.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Sadly, some seem to cheer the Fukushima disaster a success story for nuclear power.

With no sources cited, and a strange devotion to this still expanding circle of destruction, the only conclusion is ignorance is bliss.

Too bad that bliss isn't shared by the millions affected by nuclear waste and disasters. Critical analysis might include the basis for dismissing factual sources available at a click.

Somehow, "Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s government aiming to lift many evacuation orders by March 2017" is a success story. Maybe JT should be criticized for publishing this article that presents no praise for any party associated with the nuclear success story at Fukushima.

Obviously there are too many facts to place in the house of cards that nuclear power creates. Here are some facts that remain part of the nuclear power success story that is Fukushima.

"The Fukushima prefecture has 17,000 government-financed temporary housing units for some 29,500 evacuees from the accident. The prefectural government says residents can continue to use these until March 2015. The number compares with very few built in Miyagi, Iwate and Aomori prefectures for the 222,700 tsunami survivor refugees there. (Japan Times 17/11/13) Another reported contrast from the Reconstruction Agency is that some $30 billion has been paid to 84,000 nuclear accident refugees but only some $20 billion to 300,000 tsunami survivors in the Tohoku region."

source: http://www.world-nuclear.org/info/Safety-and-Security/Safety-of-Plants/Fukushima-Accident/

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

kcjapan,

An interesting retorical strategy, talk past the person responding to you and make assertions based on flawed reports.

Sadly, some seem to cheer the Fukushima disaster a success story for nuclear power.

No deaths from the Fukushima accident, deaths from over-zealous evacuations. Compared to the death toll from coal and other sources of energy, yup even that is a success.

With no sources cited, and a strange devotion to this still expanding circle of destruction, the only conclusion is ignorance is bliss.

Well, I could cite scientific sources if you wish. My only precondition would be that you do the same.

Too bad that bliss isn't shared by the millions affected by nuclear waste and disasters. Critical analysis might include the basis for dismissing factual sources available at a click.

Ah! That's where you have gone wrong, thinking that factual sources are available at a click! You have to click, then research. For example, the Fukushima and Chernobyl site you linked to, with lots of research from Jeanette Sherman, who works for the Radiation and Health pressure group. The same person who got a position approving work for the New York Academy of Sciences, then abused her position to publish a Greenpeace screed under the NYAS, a work full of holes and repudiated by the NYAS and experts.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

JT has supported fair and responsible exchange of ideas and opinion on many potentially volatile issues. For this reason, attempts at personal attacks are often limited in recognition of unproductive and uninformative content. In keeping with this policy a few observations are provided here.

The disaster at Fukushima is another example of tragedy associated with deadly radiation that has left a moonscape of contamination more than once. Many scholarly sources have confirmed the lasting and irrevocable effects of radiation's unchecked fallout.

Examination of these facts support the dire conclusions that nuclear power's legacy is centuries of deadly by-products and colossal destruction when predictable failures inevitably occur.

JT visits this continuing fallout and thoughtful readers are rightly critical of the thin whitewash some apply to the dangerous and uncontrollable devastation that results from irresponsible public relations campaigns that promote ignorance and denial.

JT provides further examination in their article: "Japan Approves Increase In Fukushima Compensation To $57 Billion"

"Japan on Tuesday approved an increase in compensation payments for the Fukushima crisis to ¥7.07 trillion ($57.18 billion), as tens of thousands of evacuees remain in temporary housing more than four years after the disaster.…"

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

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