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Residents of Tokyo's Ota Ward express concerns over Miyagi debris disposal plans

34 Comments

Tokyo metropolitan government officials held a meeting this week for residents of Ota Ward in a move designed to pave the way for the planned disposal of tsunami debris from Miyagi Prefecture in the area.

Since Tokyo first announced in late September that it would accept tsunami debris, it has received more than 1,800 complaints from residents by phone, fax and on its website, opposing the decision due to fears that radioactive substances would escape into the air if contaminated debris is burned.

At the meeting on Dec 6, officials told local residents that checks are to be carried out following the incineration to ensure that radiation levels remain within acceptable limits, with full-scale disposal set to begin in February of 2012, TBS reported.

Under the plan, 10,000 tons of combustible debris from Onagawa will be disposed of in incineration facilities located on reclaimed land in the Tokyo Bay area.

Of the 60 residents who attended the meeting, many were critical of the city authorities and several expressed doubts over claims that radioactive material would not be dispersed into the atmosphere following the incineration, TBS said.

Officials said that all of the debris will be triple checked for radiation before transport. Any material emitting above-standard levels of radiation will not be brought to the area, they said.

The Tokyo metropolitan government has already accepted tsunami debris from Iwate Prefecture. On Nov 3, about 30 tons of debris from Miyako City arrived by train at a freight station in Shinagawa Ward. The debris, in six containers, was divided into combustible and non-combustible containers, then loaded onto trucks and sent to three waste disposal and incineration facilities.

Miyagi, Iwate and Fukushima prefectures have massive mountains of rubble, said to weigh more than 23 million tons. However, prefectural government officials say that all storage areas are now full and that they need to ask other prefectures to help with disposal.

The debris being sent to Tokyo is mainly wood and metal. By the end of next March, Tokyo will have received a total of 500,000 tons of debris from Miyagi and Iwate prefectures.

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34 Comments
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How unpatriotic of them to not want cancer like the rest of Tokyo will be getting. Share in the pain of Fukushima, everyone!

-19 ( +3 / -21 )

How unpatriotic of them to not want cancer like the rest of Tokyo will be getting. Share in the pain of Fukushima, everyone!

The debris isn't from Fukushima, it has been (and is being) measured and monitored, and is so high profile that ANY deviance would result in uproar. Of the 60 residents that turned up (out of seevral hundred thousand) not ALL were critical (not sure how "many" would be in this case).

Seems that most people actually get it.

8 ( +12 / -4 )

Dump it near the DaiIchi plants. Plenty of space available there.

-3 ( +5 / -7 )

Don't they know that if they refuse to take in contaminated debris and risk their lives so the government can make a quick buck that it'll hurt the feelings of the people in the affected areas?

-6 ( +4 / -9 )

Have to do something with it.Just hope they check it better than the food supply.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

60 people, of whom only ""many were critical""? Really, do you even need to make a report on this?

Moderator: We certainly need to report it. The issue is of great concern to cities all over Japan.

-6 ( +0 / -6 )

How well was the public informed about the meeting and what time was the meeting? Probably posted it in a couple places and set the meeting for the middle of the day when people can't just skip out of work.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Is this the same Tokyo government that made the decision to accept debris BEFORE asking the people of Tokyo to approve it? Oh....it is. How about letting Tokyo volunteers observe the testing process? Maybe that would help restore the broken trust....

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

The people in my ku were going ballistic when they brought a load of stuff to incinerate not 6kms from here a month or so ago. They arranged it all and THEN let us all know about it - very quietly as someone else pointed out. By the time we all knew about it it was too late to do anything about it. They didnt listen to us, and they arent going to listen to Ota-ku either.

-4 ( +3 / -7 )

Where's the radiation-removing washtub they were talking about several days back? Any update?

-6 ( +1 / -6 )

1800 complaints from Tokyo, 60 people from Ota-ku.

I think they are listening to the people and seeing that the vast majority of people either don't care or support what they're doing. Or how else can you explain such a low percentage of people complaining.

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

Why does Tokyo take in this crap??

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

The problem with this is that no matter how low the radiation, and some of the debris will come from Onagawa (check the fallout maps), it will add to the accumulated amount of radioactive particles in Tokyo. They can burn it all at once or little by little and mix it with other stuff. No matter. The total amount of radioactive material in Tokyo's skies and on Tokyo's ground will increase. Nobody, least of all the government of Tokyo, knows whether the amount of radiation is dangerous or not. Most people living in Tokyo know that Ishihara will do it no matter what they say, he said so himself, and that protesters are being monitored by the police.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

Not only protesters who congregate in public, the police are monitoring people who call or email the government on this topic.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

haha - ssway? Share in the pain..just like you, who ran away? Seriously, make some sensible comments or just piss off.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Ota Ward is getting paid to burn this stuff, hence, the Ota Ward office is 100% for it.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

TEPCO owns one of the Tokyo companies being paid to burn the debris. They have made a deal with a company in Kyoto, to send some of it there.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

TEPCO owns one of the Tokyo companies being paid to burn the debris. They have made a deal with a company in Kyoto, to send some of it there.

Hopefully that will keep cost down?

This is gareki from tsunami - not from around vicinity of Fukushima reactors. People know that, right?

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Stupid is as stupid does.... Ssway is correct, there is a perverse sense of sharing the pain. None of this stuff should leave the area it is in - period. If you want to grow the economy, then build incinerators in the effected areas...

-3 ( +1 / -5 )

@charles

Stupid is as stupid does.... Ssway is correct, there is a perverse sense of sharing the pain. None of this stuff should leave the area it is in - period. If you want to grow the economy, then build incinerators in the effected areas...

It is actually in the way of reconstruction. It is occupying some of the flat places need to start rebuilding homes. It can't stay there, and would take years to build the facilities to process it in that region, after which they would be redundant. It makes sense to process it in ways that are productive and time effective. I don't believe the risk is going to be significant (and remember, you can't actually hide radiation).

It isn't a case of sharing pain, there is no real pain in doing this, not realistically.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Where does one go to find out where this stuff gets sent to? There must be a website somewhere, no?? I'm getting worried my area might get stuff and we won't be told.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Plain and simple when an area becomes contaminated you isolate it. You do NOT spread it around. They should be digging very deep pits in Fukushima to BURY everything that was contaminated. But by some sickening bizarre logic Japan has decided to spread the contamination to all areas of Japan. I cannot understand the thinking behind this as it defies all logic.

If someone came into your home and spilled a paint can on your floor would you try to prevent people from walking through it and spreading it around or would you spread the pain all over the floor of your home to wreck it?

PS - Who is doing all the mass downvotes of perfectly logical posts regarding the danger of what is happening in Japan? Is this someone from TEPCO or some right wing pro-nuke crazy people?

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

There is nothing logical in moaning about Fukushima when the topic is Miyagi.

5 ( +5 / -1 )

There is nothing logical in moaning about Fukushima when the topic is Miyagi.

You think nothing in Miyagi is contaminated? Do you think the government would tell us if it was contaminated? Do you think the government is being honest in what they are shifting around the country and labeling? I don't. I think everyone in the country has a "right" to be asking where this stuff is from, is it safe and refusing to accept it. There is plenty of useless land in Fukushima. Put the crap there. If anything is logical, put the waste in wasted Fukushima.

-3 ( +3 / -5 )

tmarie - I'm not saying that nothing in Miyagi is contaminated (Though most of the contamination is from the tsunami, not radiation). What I'm saying is that if people are (understandably) concerned about contaminated debris from Miyagi, it's illogical for them to go on about contamination in Fukushima. 'Just dump everything in Fukushima' sounds a good idea until you realise exactly how much debris there is that has to be got rid of. Piling it all up in Fukushima simply isn't feasible. I don't think burning is a good idea, either. I wonder if any of the less-contaminated stuff could be dumped in the sea as land-fill, after all a large part of the contamination came from the sea in the first place.

4 ( +4 / -1 )

Why is it not? There is a 20k radius of no go zone. They can move it there, build a new incinerator and burn it - which I agree, isn't the best. idea, more so if it is contaminated. Bury it. Plenty of land to do that. Huge pits. I am sure it would keep the obachans busy with sorting the burnables and unburnables. I don't want this stuff in the ocean. Hasn't it suffered enough with TEPCO??

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

PS - Who is doing all the mass downvotes of perfectly logical posts regarding the danger of what is happening in Japan? Is this someone from TEPCO or some right wing pro-nuke crazy people?

Considered that you might have actually got it wrong? Worth thinking about.

Miyagi is nearly as far away from Fukushima as Tokyo is. It may have a higher radiation reading than Tokyo due to wind direction, etc. Even so, it is still less than HK and less than NY and a whole lot less than some areas of SW UK. Time to move in to the 21 Century and away from the 1950's paranoia of Cold War Nuclear War contamination - things are not that bad.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

" It is occupying some of the flat places need to start rebuilding homes. " Gyouza, the debris is occupying the flat places because a tsunami came and destroyed everything on the flat places. The flat places are the last places where anyone should want to rebuild. There were horrible tsunamis in the Sanriku area in 1896, 1933, and 2011. Three times in little over a century. Devastating tsunamis are not rare events along that coast.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

There is a 20k radius of no go zone. They can move it there,

Would you want to work moving stuff into the no-go zone and burning/burying it there? Me neither. There's a reason it's a no-go zone.

Can you imagine how big a pit would be needed to hold 23 million tons of debris is? Again, me neither.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

**Would you want to work moving stuff into the no-go zone and burning/burying it there? Me neither. There's a reason it's a no-go zone.

Can you imagine how big a pit would be needed to hold 23 million tons of debris is? Again, me neither.**

TEPCO hasn't had any problems finding people to work in the area. I doubt there would be a problem finding anyone to do this work either. I don't want to be working there - nor am I in the position to have to. I also don't want that garbage shifting all over the country and possibly contaminating clean and safe areas.

I can't imagine the size of one pit. I can however imagine that Fukushima now has enough off limits land to deal with it. Leave the safe areas alone and stop spreading the issue around.

Miyagi is nearly as far away from Fukushima as Tokyo is. It may have a higher radiation reading than Tokyo due to wind direction, etc. Well consider areas like Shizuoka has had an issue with conatininated food, I think it might be safe to suggest that Miyagi does as well.

Time to move in to the 21 Century and away from the 1950's paranoia of Cold War Nuclear War contamination - things are not that bad. Laughable. Contaminated food, contaminated land, contaminated rivers and oceans and you claim things "aren't that bad"? Amazing. This isn't chicken little, the sky has fallen. In certain areas. And now the government is trying to spread it around it. Unreal.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Finding people to dump this stuff in the no go zone would not be such a problem. They found people to actually go in the damaged plant didn't they? No need to dig a pit either. Just dump it.

More practical though is to just move it up in the mountains, and just like all the norrthern prefectures, there is plenty of empty mountain space away from everyone and everything. Just pull up a map and look. Its no secret.

The only reason anyone is hot to burn this stuff is because there is money in it. Lots of money. The people so evil as to be thinking that way seriously need a re-education program. Perhaps North Korea would be willing to provide for a nominal fee?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Take a look at the radiation map that MEXT has released. It shows Miyagi is quite contaminated in some areas. This is concerning for those in Tokyo who will now be breathing in more contamination.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

The point is, when faced with the challenge of saving a nation, there will always be sacrificial lambs. If cancer rates increase in the future, linking them to radiation will be impossible. So given the "all clear" to proceed. why not "burn baby burn"?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

@warnerbro - thats my point. The region is quite hilly and the flat places left for building are minimal due to 1) being used as places to store gareki, 2) used for emergency temporary housing, 3) not really fit to build on, or no-one wants to live there again (shoreline, etc). Hence move the gareki is the one os themain things that can help start the rebuilding process.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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