Fukushima Accident Updates (Blog)

Your most reliable source of objective Fukushima News. No "spins"...just summaries of news reports in Japan's Press, which calls the Fukushima accident a nuclear disaster

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February 26, 2021 

  • The IAEA offers to assist in the disposal of F. Daiichi wastewater. The head of the International Atomic Energy Agency, Director General Rafael Mariano Grossi, made this proposal on Wednesday, February 24th.  A Japanese government committee says that dilution and subsequent release to the sea is the most practical option. Japanese fisheries remain concerned about the negative impact of unfounded rumors on their business with a diluted release. Grossi says that local concerns, along with those of neighboring countries, make it important that the IAEA have a presence once Tokyo makes its final decision. https://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/en/news/20210225_09/  

  • F. Daiichi’s decontamination waste disposal cost will be $3.7 billion, says Tokyo’s National Institute for Environmental Studies. The estimated cost is based on the assumption that more than 90% will be recycled in public works. Less than 10% will need to be disposed of at sites outside the prefecture., and this is where the bulk of the cost will occur.  https://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/en/news/20210226_17/  

  • A Taiwanese computer programmer says the Fukushima’s recovery is largely unknown outside the Prefecture!  Taiwan's Audrey Tang is a Digital Minister. She joined an online meeting with a number of Fukushima high school and college students. She was asked how false rumors, such as Fukushima residents being radioactive, should be addressed. She responded that such gossip is the result of ignorance, and the best response is to tell the truth. Tang is widely known for her significant role in bringing the spread of COVID19 under control in Taiwan. https://english.kyodonews.net/news/2021/02/7ec010d9a839-taiwans-audrey-tang-discusses-fukushima-challenges-with-students.html  

  • Tepco has removed four damaged F. Daiichi unit #3 fuel assemblies from the spent fuel pool. The handles for removal and other underwater movements were bent by falling debris caused by the unit’s hydrogen explosion in March, 2011. The device used to grasp the deformed handles was developed jointly with a private firm. Tepco says that the fuel bundles tilted slightly once they were removed from their respective “sleeves”, but the result was nothing of safety significance. There are 22 other fuel bundles in the pool, that can now be removed by the end of March. https://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/en/news/20210220_07/  

  • A Fukushima resident’s death was caused by last Saturday’s powerful earthquake. A man was crushed by falling household goods during the temblor. He was suffocated. The Fire and Disaster Management Agency reports a total of 185 people in the region were injured, including 100 in Fukushima Prefecture. The Federation of Electric Power Companies says about 860,000 Tepco and 90,000 Tohoku Power households lost electricity during the quake. All power was restored by 9am the next day. None of the nuke plants along the pacific coastline experienced any safety problems.   https://jen.jiji.com/jc/eng?g=eco&k=2021022500743 -- http://www.asahi.com/ajw/articles/14219923 -- https://www.jaif.or.jp/en/fepc-chairman-explains-response-to-earthquake-off-fukushima/   

  • Two seismometers installed at F. Daiichi unit #3 failed before the quake. Tepco was aware of the situation, but could not fix them because they were submerged in radioactive water. Both were installed last in March, 2020. They were covered by water during torrential rains last July. It is believed that submergence caused the malfunctions. It is felt by the Nuclear Regulation Authority that the devices could have provided valuable data during last weekend’s earthquake. The devices were not required by the NRA, but the agency still wants to know why Tepco did not fix or replace them. http://www.asahi.com/ajw/articles/14213851 -- https://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/en/news/20210222_26/ -- https://jen.jiji.com/jc/eng?g=eco&k=2021022201040  

  • Water levels inside F. Daiichi units #1 and #3 containments dropped during the recent quake. Concurrently, pressure inside the #1 containment fell. The water level drops may have been 70 centimeters in unit #1 and 30 centimeters in unit #3. The unit #1 pressure fell down to 0.9 kilopascals from 1.2 kilopascals. (one psi is equal to about 6900 kilopascals) None of the myriad of radiation monitors in operation throughout the nuke station showed any increases. Tepco says that pre-existing damage to the containments may have worsened. Japan’s “nervous nellies” feel these minor temporary fluctuations indicate new leaks out of the containments.  https://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/en/news/20210222_02/ -- https://jen.jiji.com/jc/eng?g=eco&k=2021021901340 -- https://mainichi.jp/english/articles/20210220/p2g/00m/0na/011000c  

  • Last weekend’s major earthquake caused 53 F. Daiichi wastewater tanks to shift locations. Movement varied between 3 centimeters and 19 centimeters. But, no leakage from the tanks has been found. There are at least 1,074 tanks located on the nuke plant site. https://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/en/news/20210226_03/  

  • Radioactive Cesium five times above Japan’s limits found in black rockfish. The fish were caught off the town of Shinchi on February 22nd. Their contamination levels were about 500 Becquerels per kilogram. Japan’s upper limit is 100 Bq/kg. The Fukushima Prefectural Federation of Fisheries Co-operative Associations has since halted distribution of the fish species until it can confirm their safety. All shipping restrictions were lifted in February 2020. The Federation hopes full fishing operations will resume in April.  https://mainichi.jp/english/articles/20210224/p2a/00m/0na/014000c  

  • About 75% of Fukushima residents believe the work at F. Daiichi is not promising, although about 50% say the schedule for restoration seems to be “on track”. The survey was run jointly by The Asahi Shimbun and Fukushima Broadcasting Co.  Although evacuation orders have been lifted, many evacuees have not returned to their homes, and reports such as this are not improving matters. However, about 35% said they approve of the plans to release F. Daiichi waste waters to the sea after further dilution while 87% said the situation is hurt by damaging rumors contingent to a wastewater release. In addition, 84% said the government should be held responsible for not forcing Tepco to take measures to prevent the triple meltdown. On a related note, more than half of the respondents remain anxious about radioactive contamination.   http://www.asahi.com/ajw/articles/14216668  

  • Despite Japan’s radiophobic response to the F. Daiichi accident, nuclear energy remains a major part of Japan’s effort to reduce greenhouse gasses. Tokyo has begun full-fledged discussions on how to drop carbon emissions to net zero by 2050. Tokyo realizes that they must eliminate the burning of fossil fuels in order to meet the goal. However, total stoppage of fossil fuel burning necessitates the use of nuclear energy. To do this, about 20% of all electricity must come from nukes. Currently, only about 6% comes from nuclear plants. Pilot projects on wind and solar power have shown that they are not reliable enough to replace nuclear. https://the-japan-news.com/news/article/0007180151   

February 19, 2021  

  • Tokyo High Court finds both Tepco and the national government liable for the 2011 F. Daiichi accident. This is the second high court ruling to find both the government and Tepco both legally responsible and subject to pay financial damages for incurred mental distress. This reverses a September 2017 Chiba lower court ruling that absolved Tokyo of liability. It also reduced the total financial of financial damages to 43 claimants from $3.7 million for Tepco-alone, down to $2.6 million combined. All plaintiffs are evacuees from Fukushima Prefecture who have moved to Chiba and other prefectures, but refuse to return to their Fukushima homes even though the local living restrictions have been lifted. Presiding judge Shirai Yukio said the government could have foreseen the risk of a massive tsunami, if it had studied a long-term assessment of seismic activities released by a panel of experts in 2002. He added that if the plant had been equipped with tidal barriers it would not have suffered a prolonged full-station power blackout. He said, “If the government had taken (preventive) measures, the accident would not have happened. It went against the law by not exercising its power to impose regulations." In fact, he called the government’s failure to invoke its regulatory power “extremely unreasonable”! https://jen.jiji.com/jc/eng?g=eco&k=2021021901282 - https://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/en/news/20210219_34/ - https://mainichi.jp/english/articles/20210219/p2g/00m/0dm/001000d  

  • Kansai Electric Company says they will identify a site for used (spent) fuel storage by the end of 2023. The commitment has been the sticking point of whether or not Fukui’s governor would approve restarts of three nuke units in the prefecture, each of which has exceeded Japan’s largely arbitrary 40-year licensing limit. The Nuclear Regulatory Authority has found all three units worthy of an extended legal lifetime. Kepco president Takashi Morimoto met Governor Tatsuji Sugimoto to admit that the company had caved to the governor’s demand for an out-of-Fukui facility. Morimoto stressed that operation of nukes beyond the 40-year limit is safe and fiscally responsible. Also at the meeting, Industry Minister Kajiyama said it is essential to operate NPPs beyond 40 years to achieve the national government’s target energy mix for 2030 and beyond. He promised METI would provide maximum support for regional growth and development after the end of operations. https://www.jaif.or.jp/en/site-for-spent-fuel-intermediate-storage-facility-outside-fukui-prefecture-to-be-determined-by-end-of-2023/  

  • Miyagi fishermen say their poor catches since 2011 are mostly due to global warming. It seems the reduced business since 2019 is not being blamed on F. Daiichi rumors. Before the Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami of 2011, Miyagi ranked second in Japan in terms to yield thanks to rich offshore fishing grounds formed by the meeting of the Oyashio and Kuroshio Currents. the tsunami ravaged the prefecture's coastal areas.  It has partially recovered due to fish markets, fishing vessels, and farming facilities being rebuilt in reconstruction projects run by the central and prefectural governments. The yearly haul had returned to pre-calamity level in 2017, but has steadily dropped since then. https://jen.jiji.com/jc/eng?g=eco&k=2021021600600  


February 12, 2021

  • Okuma Town Clinic opens in the Ogawara District. It is the first medical facility to open in the F. Daiichi host community since 3/11/2011! There was no opening ceremony due to pandemic concerns. When the doors opened at 8:30am on Tuesday February 9th, townspeople were already waiting. The first examination began promptly at 9am. Currently, the facility will be open only on Tuesdays. The clinic’s doctor, Kenshiro Yamauchi, hails looks forward to being the primary care doctor for the 285 residents who have returned. One of the most common reasons why so few have returned is lack of a medical facility. https://the-japan-news.com/news/article/0007115605
  • The security breach at Kashiwazaki-Kariwa is judged serious by the NRA. Last week, we posted the discovery of control room worker using someone else’s ID card, which occurred in September. The K-K station is owned by Tepco. Tepco discovered and investigated the incident, finding that the worker lost his ID card, took another person’s from a nearby locker, then used it to enter the central control room. The NRA maintains there are several checkpoints workers must pass through before getting to the control room.  It seems a security person entered him in manually by rewriting data into the computer. The Nuclear Regulation Authority says this is a serious mistake, violating anti-terrorist rules. The government says they might conduct security reviews on ID checking systems at other utilities to find if the practice is endemic. https://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/en/news/20210211_26/

February 5, 2021

  • Four “deformed” fuel cells will be removed from the unit #3 Spent Fuel Pool (SFP). Actually, it seems the only deformities are to the handles on the tops of the bundles. The damage occurred when large chunks of debris fell on the handles during the explosion of March 14, 2011. The handles are grasped by fuel handling technology to lift, hold, and transport the bundles during refueling operations. A standard fuel handling machine might not be able to grasp the damaged handles sufficiently to preclude dropping during the movement. A “specially designed hook” has been made to do the job safely. 562 bundles have been removed from the pool, to date. Only the four with mangled handles remain. The work is expected to be done in the next few weeks. https://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/en/news/20210205_02/
  • The mayor of Takahama Town OKs two controversial nuke restarts. Both Takahama units Nos. 1&2 have operated beyond the NRA’s largely arbitrary 40 year licensing limit, making Mayor Yukata Nose’s approval the first of its kind in Japan. Both units have already passed the Nuclear Regulation Authority requirements for a 20 year extension. He told the town assembly, "The town understands (the need for the restart) as we comprehensively take into account the safety of the nuclear reactors and their importance. We have confirmed" that all of the requirements are met. https://jen.jiji.com/jc/eng?g=eco&k=2021020100514
  • A Fukushima centotaph will honor those who died because of a 3/11/11 dam break. The collapse was caused by the Great East Japan Earthquake on that date in the city of Sukagawa. The official unveiling will occur on March 11. The lake behind the dam held about 1.5 million tons of water designed to be an agricultural supply. Most of it suddenly rushed downstream, flooding 131 structures and killing eight. Some of the bereaved families don’t want the names of their lost kin etched into the stone because the bodies were never found and they still hold out hope they are somehow alive. Those who feel otherwise have assisted in the project. https://the-japan-news.com/news/article/0007115339
  • A Fukushima photographer has made a large picture of a rose garden linking two international tragedies. Specifically, the 3/11/11 earthquake in Japan and the 9/11/01 destruction of the Twin Trade Towers in New York. The quake and resulting tsunami hit the city of Ishinomaki hard. The photographer, Katsuhiro Noguchi, decided to create the work after meeting a Japanese-American doctor, Robert T. Yanagisawa, who was intimately familiar with the American tragedy. The photo is a composite of pictures taken at a memorial garden in the Ogatsu District of Ishinomaki. It is named “Ogatsu Rose Factory Garden". Noguchi says, "Flowers have the power of enabling people to share empathetic feelings beyond the barriers of nationality, culture and language." The large photo measures roughly 3 feet on a side. http://www.fukushimaminponews.com/news.html?id=1044
  • The Yomiuri Shimbun says Fukushima decommissioning still has a “very long way to go”. The news outlet has the largest circulation in Japan, and is known for its generally objective reporting. Because of this, Tepco granted the Yomiuri access to the plant site to preview the 10th anniversary of the accident, next month. Much of the visual visit focused on unit #1. The unit was enclosed by a temporary structure in 2011. That structure was removed in 2016 to facilitate removal of392 fuel bundles from the SFP. Another, much larger enclosure will be constructed around the destroyed upper floor to safely accommodate the crane that will lift and remove the fuel bundles. The report also chronicles the fact that most of the plant site has been cleaned up to the point where anti-contamination clothing is no longer required. While observing unit #3, the reporter said his dosimeter showed 235 microsieverts per hour. At that rate, it would take about 4 hours to reach the annual limit for ordinary members of the public. Though unstated in the article, this is a many times improvement over the past 10 years! https://the-japan-news.com/news/article/0007124523
  • Tepco’s K-K unit restarts possibly delayed because of an alleged “misconduct”. Restarts of any Kashiwazaki-Kariwa nukes depend on approval by local officials. However, a Tepco employee entered one of the control rooms by using another employee’s ID card last September. Tepco discovered it and dutifully reported the issue to the NRA. Neither Tepco nor the NRA made a public announcement at the time of the incident. Niigata Governor Hideyo Hamazumi said the incident violated “fundamental basics of security”. Public distrust is expected to emerge. https://jen.jiji.com/jc/eng?g=eco&k=2021013000437

January 29, 2021

  • Japan’s Reconstruction Agency promotes Fukushima-caught fish. An event in Yokohama City was held to increase awareness of the safety of the prefecture’s marine products. Participants were shown videos of fish testing, followed by an on-line lessen ton filleting the fish. Then, participants were given some of the prepared fish to taste. The Agency says is but the first of the promotional events intended to assist Fukushima fishermen to resume a full-fledged operation. https://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/en/news/20210125_27/
  • A robot made at Fukushima College wins top prize in a decommissioning contest. The devise was touted for its speed and ability to utilize various methodologies for debris retrieval. The victory occurred at an annual competition between students from 13 colleges that comprise the National Institute of Technology. Hiroha Toba, the 18-year-old leader of the winning team said, "I'll be happy if our robot is useful on the ground." The device had to traverse an obstacle course resembling designed as “real life”, retrieve balls representing debris, and pass through areas that blocked Wi-Fi signals. The competition was organized by the Japan Atomic Energy Agency with the support of the Education Ministry. https://english.kyodonews.net/news/2021/01/e5aa94f0386d-fukushima-college-robot-wins-top-prize-for-nuclear-decommissioning.html
  • The NRA’s draft investigative report on the F. Daiichi accident is approved. Nuclear Regulation Authority investigations show that radiation levels continue to drop, allowing for some experts to actually go inside previously off-limits locations. Important discoveries include finding that two of the attempted depressurization attempts intended to slow, if not stop progression of the accident, actually sent the explosive gasses in wrong directions. This may have exacerbated the explosions inside the unit #1 & #3 reactor buildings. Also, the containment vessel shield plugs for units #2 & #3 may be contaminated with about 10 percent of the radioactive materials that were inside the reactor cores before the meltdowns. This higher-than-expected discovery could negatively affect the decommissioning schedule. Unit #2 is still expected to be the first to have internal debris collected and removed by remote-controlled robots, but it is still undecided as to whether to remove the shield plug. In addition, the NRA says video footage compiled on March 14th, 2011, indicates there may have been multiple explosions with unit #3 that occurred in rapid succession. NRC Chairman Toyoshi Fuketa called the findings “extremely serious” and would make corium removal “more difficult.”  On the other hand, the shield plug for unit #1 does not seem to have been as highly contaminated as the other two units because it moved during the explosion and allowed some of the contamination-impregnated gasses to escape. The document stresses the need to continue on-site investigations. https://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/en/news/20210126_37/ -- https://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/en/news/20210127_29/ -- https://the-japan-news.com/news/article/0007096152 -- http://www.asahi.com/ajw/articles/14140809
  • The Industry Ministry paints a bleak picture for Japanese nukes in 2060. Unless new nukes are built or existing ones markedly refurbished, no more than eight will remain in operation, at that point. Japan now has 36 plants operating, awaiting restart, or planned for construction. Without nukes, it is doubtful that the nation will reach its internationally agreed-upon future carbon neutrality targets. https://jen.jiji.com/jc/eng?g=eco&k=2021012701218

January 22, 2021

  • The law for financial assistance to communities hosting nukes is up for renewal. For the first time since the 2011 F. Daiichi accident. Tokyo wants to renew extra financial assistance to jurisdictions housing nuclear power plants. The law was enacted in 2000 as a temporary measure to ease the minds of citizens living nearest to nukes. Locals had deep concerns about building new nukes on existing plant sites after the 1999 incident at Tokai station in Ibaraki Prefecture. The duration of the law was to be ten years, but another decade was just before the F. Daiichi accident occurred. It has been a financial boon to local governments, with a total of nearly $140 million being meted out in 2019. This is the first time that the law has been publically debated. Critics maintain that another extension cannot be justified given the 2011nuke accident. http://www.asahi.com/ajw/articles/14119178
  • Tokyo High Court absolves the government of F. Daiichi nuke accident liability. The decision effectively reverses a lower court ruling that ordered the government to pay additional compensation to evacuees, both mandated and voluntary. Presiding Judge Akira Adachi said that the government "was unable to foresee the occurrence of the massive tsunami", thus Tokyo’s failure to order Tepco to beef up tsunami protection “is not found to be significantly unreasonable.” The original lawsuit was filed on behalf of 137 Fukushima residents in Sendai who wanted $14.5 millionin psychological damages for those who fled outside the prefecture. Most of which was dropped by the Tokyo High Court. However, the court did order Tepco to pay $1.19 million to 91 of the original plaintiffs, who say it is not enough and plan an appeal.  Their rationale is the amount they received under the current state compensation guidelines is insufficient relative to the duress inflicted. https://jen.jiji.com/jc/eng?g=eco&k=2021012101163 --  https://english.kyodonews.net/news/2021/01/99f12b0c66b0-high-court-denies-govt-responsibility-for-fukushima-nuclear-crisis.html
  • Oi unit #4 restarts despite the Osaka District Court saying that it is vulnerable to earthquakes. The Osaka ruling was actually specific to the Nuclear Regulation Authority’s quake safety standards. The court said the nuclear watchdog body is not following its own post-Fukushima guidelines, which we reported here on December 4th. The NRA filed an appeal the following week. Because the Osaka ruling concerns the Government agency, and not the Oi unit or its owners (Kansai Electric), the nuke can restart and operate while the case is fully adjudicated. https://lucian.uchicago.edu/blogs/atomicage/2021/01/19/table-japan-nuclear-reactor-operations-kansai-electric-restarts-ohi-no-4-reactor-via-reuters/ -- https://jen.jiji.com/jc/eng?g=eco&k=2021011600011

January 15, 2021

  • A new library to open in Okuma. It will hold up to 50,000 books and become one of the largest collections at a Japanese public school. Books donated since the March, 2011 calamity will be displayed in gratitude for public donations. The library will allow Okuma will be called a “Town of reading”. The school housing the library will be dubbed because kindergarten, elementary, and junior high will be housed in the same location. http://www.fukushimaminponews.com/news.html?id=1041
  • A coming-of-age ceremony for the town of Namie was held last Saturday. 54 residents who turn 20 this year were honored in this annual celebration. Now an official adult, Ayumi Yoshida said,  "I feel happy that I was able to take part in this coming-of-age ceremony in my hometown although we are experiencing a host of difficult challenges." Namie Mayor Kazuhiro Yoshida said: "You are all gifted and have a bright future. I want you to keep watching your hometown Namie." All participants wore masks and practiced appropriate social distancing. https://jen.jiji.com/jc/eng?g=eco&k=2021011000043
  • One of the most tsunami-devastated coastal communities on the Pacific coast sees its massive ground-elevation project continue. The ten meter high civil engineering feat in Rikuzentakata, Iwate Prefecture, is scheduled to be completed this spring. The city was hit with a 10 meter surge on March 11, 2011, killing at least 1,606 residents. 223 remain missing and are presumed dead. The ground-elevation project will be more than 2.5 times the size of Tokyo’s Disneyland Park. Mayor Futoshi Toba has urged the size of the project to be expanded to its present size because, “It is meaningless if people say it’s too scary to live there.” Resident Toshihiro Kanno lost his home in the disaster and said: “Everyone had their hands full rebuilding their lives. We didn’t have time to think about what the city would look like after reconstruction.” https://the-japan-news.com/news/article/0007055573

January 8, 2021

  • Japan’s Atomic Industrial Forum says the country needs nukes to meet environmental goals. JAIF points to zero carbon emissions, “economic efficiency”, and stability in supplying electricity. The organization also looks forward to the restarts of Kashiwazaki-Kariwa units 6&7, Onagawa unit 2, Tokai Daini, Takahama units 1&2 and Mihama unit 3. JAIF also calls for extending operating lifetimes since the rate of degradation for nukes is extremely low. For 2021, the group wants to upgrade public understanding, assist in Fukushima reconstruction, improve development of human resources, and assist in international cooperation. https://www.jaif.or.jp/en/greeting-at-the-start-of-2021/
  • JAEA says the removal of fuel debris from F. Daiichi reactors should be under water. Japan Atomic Energy Agency research show that partially melted fuel may have clung to vessel internals. If not carefully removed, they maintain that a chemical reaction could occur resulting in a metal fire and another meltdown. JAEA’s Kurata said, “It became clear that what’s happening to the fuel debris largely differs with each reactor. It’s important to proceed based on the assessment of the samples taken instead of relying on past precedents.” http://www.fukushimaminponews.com/news.html?id=1040
  • Naoto Khan wanted to evacuate the emperor to Kyoto at the start of the Fukushima accident. However, the Imperial Household Agency dismissed the idea because it could have resulted in metropolitan panic. Kan, now a radical antinuclear activist, admits it was only his idea, but denies ever trying to do it. A senior Kan official says this is not true and that a “mediator” was assigned to make the idea known to the emperor’s Imperial Chief, Shingo Haketa. Grand chamberlain Yutaka Kawashima posted in a magazine, "It is utterly inconceivable for his majesty to abandon the people of Tokyo and leave Tokyo." https://english.kyodonews.net/news/2021/01/3f87b65872fe-emperors-evacuation-to-kyoto-weighed-after-fukushima-nuclear-disaster.html
  • An Asahi Shimbun poll says 32% support the release of essentially harmless F. Daiichi wastewater. However, 55% still oppose the possibility. Moreover, 80% fear that the release would damage the reputation of the local fishing industry. Whereas 44% of male respondents support the release, 62% of women oppose it. Also, 67 said Tokyo’s handling of the nuclear accident to date has been bad while 20 percent gave the government high ratings. The poll was taken in November and December. http://www.asahi.com/ajw/articles/14080736  (Aside – the 32% support for the release is the highest we have seen yet! – End aside)

January 1, 2021

  • Thirty percent of Fukushima residents feel reconstruction has been sufficient. Meanwhile, 80% of Miyagi and 66% of Iwate Prefectures feel the same about recovery in their prefectures.  Of the three hundred people in the three prefectures who were polled, 176 felt reconstruction was "progressing" or "progressing to some degree" and 123 said progress was insufficient. Among Fukushima residents unhappy with progress, many said they are disappointed that they are still not allowed to return home. https://english.kyodonews.net/news/2021/01/13fd3540b365-only-30-of-fukushima-residents-happy-with-disaster-recovery-progress.html
  • Another overly-optimistic projection for renewable energy is proposed for Japan. In December, the World Wide Fund formally assured Japan that it can be carbon-neutral by 2050. WWF’s “expert” Konishi Masako says that drastic change is needed, and the key is total elimination of coal-burning. While this is true, they reject nuclear energy as a viable alternative. Instead, they believe that strategically-located wind and solar plants, combined with hydrogen based generation, can off-set the loss of coal by 2030. Not only is their idea reliant on inherently intermittent solar and wind, but they say that enough excess energy will be produced by 2030 to make copious amounts for hydrogen as a fuel. Masako asserts, “When you fill energy demand with natural sources like solar and wind that are reliant on weather conditions, you end up producing a lot of surplus energy. But, this surplus energy can be used to break down water into hydrogen.” (Aside - We at the Hiroshima Syndrome understand that this concept is irresponsible and unrealistic. Total carbon neutrality is possible for Japan only with a drastic shift to nukes. – End aside!) https://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/en/news/backstories/1436/  
    • The Asahi Shimbun makes an unsupported claim about radiation levels at F. Daiichi! The headline reads, "Radiation levels at Fukushima plant far worse than was thought", but nothing in the subsequent article supports the claim! Of realistic interest, the article correctly points out that the shield plugs which seal up the containments have radioactive material attached to their undersides. NRA chairman Toyoshi Fuketa has said, "It appears that nuclear debris lies at an elevated place. This will have a huge impact on the whole process of decommissioning work." The body of the Asahi report is filled with huge numerical estimates of radiation levels inside the containments, but nowhere does it say that these estimates are any worse than had been expected! http://www.asahi.com/ajw/articles/14071742

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