Day 256 “The risks of radiation are well known.”

Just for the record…

Mochizuki over at is leaving. (

Folks in Tokyo are leaving.

Sensible people do exist!

Nuke crisis sends hundreds of Tokyoites fleeing to Okinawa

November 22, 2011


NAHA, Okinawa Prefecture–Following the Fukushima nuclear crisis and fearing the spread of radiation, a number of Kanto residents fled to this southernmost prefecture and continue to live here despite the lack of personal connections.

“The Okinawans are really warm-hearted. I wouldn’t want to live in Tokyo again,” said Jin Tanimura, 38, clad in “kariyushi” wear, a locally promoted attire that looks like a Hawaiian shirt.

Following the nuclear crisis, more people have moved out of Tokyo and surrounding areas to Okinawa and other parts of western Japan than have moved in. Some well-known figures, including the writer Hitomi Kanehara, have openly said they evacuated out of the region to safety.

No data is available on the number of evacuees from the Tokyo metropolitan area to Okinawa, but local sources suggested there were hundreds.

The evacuees chose Okinawa because “it is far removed from Fukushima, it hosts no nuclear plant, and because Japanese is spoken there,” the sources said.

That sense of fear drove Tanimura, his wife, child, younger brother and sister-in-law to evacuate to Kyushu after the crisis began to unfurl at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant on March 11.

A search for a place devoid of nuclear plants led the family of five to Okinawa, although they had no relatives in the prefecture. It was only here that they could finally feel comfortable enough to take off their protective masks. They have lived in Okinawa for five months.

“The risk of radiation is fundamentally different from other risks,” Tanimura said. “It is invisible, and information is of mixed quality, and there are so many things that you don’t understand. That’s what makes it scary.”

Read the entire article at:

Two from EX-SKF today:

Contaminated Water from Fukushima I Nuke Plant Crossing the International Date Line

(by Asahi Shinbun, from JAMSTEC information. Unit: becquerel/liter)

The Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology (JAMSTEC), which only yesterdayannounced the cesium contamination of Pacific Ocean at 5000 meters deep, disclosed the result of their simulation of dispersion of radioactive cesium on the surface of Pacific Ocean.

Now they tell us that the contaminated water from the Fukushima I Nuclear Power Plant accident may have reached the international date line in 4 to 5 months after the accident.

That would be in July-August time frame.

The map is cut off right at the international date line, as if that’s all the researchers cared about. (After all, they are the government researchers at this government Agency.) But rest assured as the researchers and the reporters all say there will be no effect on health. (Whose health?)

Read the rest of the article at: 

Radioactive Strontium Found in Central Tokyo

(UPDATE-2) Asahi Shinbun carried the news:

朝日新聞11/22東京版  on Twitpic

(UPDATE) So far, it is dead silence from the Japanese MSMs; even the critical papers like Tokyo Shinbun is mum on strontium in Tokyo.


A citizen group did the soil survey of three locations in central Tokyo, and had the soil samples tested for radioactive cesium and strontium. All three had both.

Summary of reporting by Yasumi Iwakami, independent journalist:

Locations and amounts of radioactive materials:

Kiyosumi Shirakawa Station, Koto-ku:
Radioactive cesium (134 and 137 combined): 19,126 Bq/kg
Radioactive strontium (89 and 90 combined): 44 Bq/kg

Yurakucho Station, Chiyoda-ku:
Radioactive cesium (134 and 137 combined): 20,955 Bq/kg
Radioactive strontium (89 and 90 combined): 51 Bq/kg

Front of the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, Chiyoda-ku:
Radioactive cesium (134 and 137 combined): 48,176 Bq/kg
Radioactive strontium (89 and 90 combined): 48 Bq/kg

It’s a poetic justice that the amount of radioactive cesium is the highest at METI. I hear TEPCO’s headquarter building in Tokyo also enjoys rather high radiation.

Read the entire article at:

Fukushima radiation meters fail gov’t accuracy requirements

A radiation meter made by Alpha Tsushin K.K. (Photo courtesy of the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology)

A radiation meter made by Alpha Tsushin K.K. (Photo courtesy of the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology)

Radiation meters installed at parks and primary schools across Fukushima Prefecture do not meet the central government’s minimum accuracy requirements, it was learned on Nov. 18.

The Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology cancelled its contract with the meters’ supplier the same day. The ministry will begin removing the 600 devices soon, and reopen bidding on the radiation meter contract. The meters were scheduled to start operating in October, but that has now been pushed back to February next year at the earliest.

According to the ministry, five firms bid on the meter supply contract in July, won by Tokyo-based telecommunications equipment firm Alpha Tsushin K.K. for some 370 million yen. The contract requirements demanded that radiation measurements be accurate to within plus or minus 20 percent, but soon after they were installed in October the ministry discovered the meter readings were off by as much as 40 percent.

The science ministry intends to demand compensation from Alpha Tsushin for breach of contract.

A public relations official with the company told the Mainichi, “There are many points on which we cannot agree with the cancellation of the contract.”

(Mainichi Japan) November 19, 2011

This October piece, from Simply Info, the Fukushima Project, is quite interesting as it discusses how the tables are turned on vocabulary to create guilt where none should exist and a diversion from where attention should be placed.

Radiophobia, A New Game Of Blame The Victim

October 12th, 2011

There has been an organized effort to trivialize the disaster in Japan including a few supposed experts asking for the evacuation zone to be lifted and claiming the evacuations were more damaging than nuclear fallout. This rather bizarre concept plays heavily on the claim of radiophobia. Claiming that people’s fear of radiation is the real problem, not the damaging effects of radiation. Radiophobia is not an actual medical or psychological term or phobia. No official medical or psychological body recognizes this term or phobia.

“A number of terms with the suffix -phobia are used non-clinically but have gained public acceptance, though they are often considered buzzwords. Such terms are primarily understood as negative attitudes towards certain categories of people or other things, used in an analogy with the medical usage of the term. Usually these kinds of “phobias” are described as fear, dislike, disapproval, prejudicehatreddiscrimination, or hostility towards the object of the “phobia”. Often this attitude is based on prejudices and is a particular case of most xenophobia. These non-clinical phobias are typically used as labels cast on someone by another person or some other group.”

Below are some examples:

  • Chemophobia – prejudice against artificial substances in favour of “natural” substances.
  • Ephebiphobia – fear or dislike of youth or adolescents.
  • Homophobia – fear or dislike of homosexuals or homosexuality.
  • Xenophobia – fear or dislike of strangers or the unknown, sometimes used to describe nationalistic political beliefs and movements. It is also used in fictional work to describe the fear or dislike of space aliens.
  • Islamophobia – this term is not connected to actual fear. It is used to refer to hating or discrimination against Muslims.
    (Wikipedia entry)

The term itself was not coined until 1987 by Soviet authorities after the Chernobyl accident. It was used to downplay patients with radiation sickness.

The claim that “radiophobia” means an irrational fear has also been highly criticized by Adolph Kharash, Science Director at the Moscow State University wrote,
It treats the normal impulse to self-protection, natural to everything living, your moral suffering, your anguish and your concern about the fate of your children, relatives and friends, and your own physical suffering and sickness as a result of delirium, of pathological perversion.” 

This technique of claiming radiophobia insidiously and quite subtly places blame on the victims of the disaster. It paints disaster victims in a way that portrays them as irrational or hysterical, yet in a much more socially acceptable way by claiming there is some sort of mental problem or group hysteria going on. If these critics were to come straight out and call all victims of the disaster hysterical or mentally ill there would be great backlash.

The radiophobia game also many times tries to place blame on the disaster victims for the existence of the risk or that they benefited from it. While some may have supported nuclear power in Japan, many did it without being given a full and realistic understanding of the risks. Such as the real risk level of the design flaws in the GE Mark 1 reactors, this information while known widely within the nuclear industry and anti-nuclear circles was not broad public knowledge. But even those who knew the risks or protested nuclear power in the end did not have a say, plants were installed despite their protests. Even those living far away from any of the nuclear power plants in Japan have found themselves at risk through a contaminated and unreliable food supply and levels of radiation being found over a large swath of the main island.

There is a well documented history of injury, illness and death from nuclear fallout.Hiroshima, Nagasaki, the Daigo Fukuryū Maru incident, The Marshal Islands, the Kyshtym disaster, the Mayak nuclear site, SemipalatinskHanford, the US nuclear tests and many other smaller accidents have shown the dangerous effects of both high and lower radiation exposures on the public. There is a large body of evidence showing the danger of nuclear fallout and radiation. For a fear to be irrational means it has no basis, no reason, mental clarity or without sound judgement. Yet the risks of radiation are well known.

The very real concerns people have about their safety and well being can be better managed though honesty, clear and timely information and the ability to make decisions based on all the known information in order to regain control over their lives.


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