Day 262 Russian Roulette Cuisine

Japan’s Decon Bubble: This Is the Way They’ll Decon Orchards in Fukushima

They will power-wash the trees and call it “decontamination”.

At least in this video, they put down the tarp under the tree.

NHK News on 11/28/2011 has a clip that shows exactly the same “decon” method but without any tarp to at least shield the soil from radioactive materials being sprayed down.

This “advanced technology decontamination” as per Minister Hosono will be used by 600 fruit orchards (2200 hectares) in 3 municipalities in Fukushima (Date City, Kunimi-machi, Koori-machi) starting in the middle of December. And the fruit farmers themselves will get to do the decon job.

NHK News also has this from the head of the JA in Date City:


“I know it will be a heavy burden on the fruit farmers, but in order to deliver safe fruits to consumers we need to do decontamination as soon as possible. We want to finish it as soon as possible.”

Ummm. No thank you. And what is the point of power-washing the radioactive materials off the trees into the ground so that the roots can absorb?

Has Fukushima Prefecture done any study to show that this power-washing method is effective?

=  +  =  +  =  +  =  +  =
   Well, that’s a good point, now isn’t it? The roots will soak it up. Of course.
   It’s not enough to say, “Well, I’m not going to buy anything from Fukushima” because there is absolutely no way of knowing whether what you buy at the market, what you order at Denny’s, what you are served at someone’s home, originated in Fukushima, Gunma, Aichi, or Kyoto. 
   They have tons of rice up north with no buyers. One story has already come to light about the ODA buying up 5,000,000,000 yen worth of rice grown in Tohoku and passing it along as food assistance to developing countries (
   And if there’s any left over, can you say “bow-wow”? Pet food also contains rice.
   Or by exporting it overseas, the label will simply say “Made in Thailand, or China.”
   How will we ever know about the fruit in the yoghurt we’ve just bought at the convenience store? How about the bento or the rice ball that contains tuna – double whammy there.
   There is a cafeteria where I work, and every day in my head I question how they are able to serve the food at such cheap prices. Where, exactly, did the ingredients come from? Why do I feel like I’m playing Russian Roulette with my food?!
   Of course, this is wild speculation, brought on by harmful rumors. There is absolutely no need to even think about such things happening. After all, the government is checking the rice that comes out of Tohoku, right?
   What’s that? Only one bag out of 50? Well, that’s okay now, isn’t it!

=  +  =  +  =  +  =  +  =  +  =

Radioactive Rice Keeps Coming: 1050 Bq/Kg of Radioactive Cesium from Date City, Fukushima

Asahi Shinbun has a convenient map that plots locations where the rice has been found with radioactive cesium far exceeding the provisional safety limit of 500 becquerels/kg. The white circle isOnami District in Fukushima City where up to 1270 Bq/kg of radioactive cesium has been found in the rice. The two red circles are the locations in Date City where the rice exceeding the limit has been found this time. So far.

And unlike in Onami District in Fukushima City, they are only testing one bag out of every 50. Some comfort.

From Asahi Shinbun (11/28/2011):


After radioactive cesium exceeding the provisional safety limit was detected in rice harvested in Onami District of Fukushima City (former Oguni-mura), Fukushima Prefecture announced on November 28 that rice from 3 farms in the adjasent areas of Onami District, former Oguni-mura and former Tsukidate-machi, both of which became part of Date City, was found with radioactive cesium exceeding the limit. Part of the rice has been sold in the market. The prefectural government has requested that the shipment of rice from these two districts to be voluntarily halted. The national government is going to order the halt of the rice shipment from the districts.


According to the Fukushima prefectural government, 9 kilograms of “mochi” rice harvested in former Oguni-mura part of Date City had been already sold to consumers at a local farm stand. This is the first case of the rice exceeding the limit having been found to have been sold to the general public.


According to the prefecture, in former Oguni-mura of Date City, 2 samples from 2 farms out of 119 samples from 101 farms tested 580 becquerels/kg and 780 becquerels/kg respectively. In former Tsukidate-machi of Date City, 1 samples from 1 farm out of 8 samples from 6 farms tested 1050 becquerels/kg.

Just to remind you: If a government ask you to voluntarily do something, the government does not compensate you for your inconvenience. If the government orders you to do something, then the government is obligated to compensate.

The Fukushima prefectural government hasn’t posted the press release on their website yet, but Yomiuri Shinbun (11/29/2011) reports that 4 additional farms in Onami District of Fukushima City had the rice whose radioactive cesium exceeded the provisional safety limit, bringing the total to 10 farms.

The prefecture and the media are trying their best to isolate these cases as “special”, saying that these farms are located in the mountains or near the mountains.

Well, I would think that condition applies to the significant number of rice farms in Japan.

TEPCO says no explosion occurred at No.2 reactor

The operator of the damaged Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant says there was no explosion at the No. 2 reactor, denying an earlier report that there was. But the company says it is still unable to determine how and why radioactive substances were released from the reactor.

NHK has obtained Tokyo Electric Power Company’s interim report on the nuclear accident that was triggered by the earthquake and tsunami on March 11th.

The report includes findings from a study that the utility launched in June to analyze how the accident occurred and how workers responded to it.

The report says that almost all electricity sources for the reactors were lost at once following the tsunami.

As a result, multiple safety functions were also lost, causing meltdowns from the No. 1 to the No. 3 reactors.

TEPCO analyzed seismographic data recorded within the plant in the early morning of March 15th, 4 days after the disaster, when a large blast was reportedly heard near the containment vessel of the No. 2 reactor.

The company concluded in the report that there was no explosion at the No. 2 reactor, and that a blast at the No. 4 reactor was mistakenly believed to have occurred at the No. 2.

Later that day, pressure inside the No. 2 reactor vessel dropped sharply, and radiation levels near the plant’s main gate rose above 10 millisieverts per hour, then the highest level so far.
The interim report fails to specify how the leakage occurred at the containment vessel, just saying that gas in the vessel was somehow released into the air.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011 09:58 +0900 (JST)



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