Day 373 Uh-oh Aichi

Monday, March 19, 2012

Aichi to build quake debris incinerator

NAGOYA — Aichi Gov. Hideaki Omura said Sunday he is making final arrangements with Chubu Electric Power Co. to build an incinerator and waste disposal site for quake and tsunami debris at a local thermal power plant.

Omura said he made a decision in late February to help disaster-hit areas in the Tohoku region get rid of the mountains of debris slowing its recovery and asked the utility about borrowing premises in the city of Hekinan.

Chubu Electric confirmed the governor’s request without elaborating and said the prefecture is still working on the idea.

The Aichi government would set its own safety standards and release radiation results from test runs and other data to help win over the city and local residents, the officials said.

Aichi is apparently opting to build its own incineration facilities because none of its 54 local municipalities have offered to help because of radiation fears.

The roughly 2.08 million sq. meter premises at the plant in Hekinan include landfill to dispose of coal ash produced in the process of power generation.

In a related development, Environment Minister Goshi Hosono told Miyagi Gov. Yoshihiro Murai during talks in Sendai that the central government plans to make a disaster-prevention forest on the Sendai Plain by engaging in reclamation projects to accommodate disaster debris.

The Forestry Agency is considering building in June a giant coastal forest spanning dozens of kilometers that would eventually serve as a shield against high tides and winds and soften the blow of tsunami, he said.

Later in the day, Hosono took to the streets of Kawasaki to take part in a government campaign to urge residents to accept debris from the prefectures hardest hit by the disasters.

As of March 12, only 6.8 percent of the estimated 20.45 million tons of waste generated in Iwate and Miyagi prefectures by the natural disasters had been incinerated or otherwise disposed of, according to the Environment Ministry.

Of the 47 prefectures, only Aomori, Yamagata and Tokyo are accepting debris. Last week, the city of Shimada, Shizuoka Prefecture, officially announced it will accept and dispose of debris from Iwate.

Of the three hardest-hit prefectures, only debris from Fukushima, which hosts the crippled nuclear complex, will be processed within the prefecture.

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Another good analysis from EX-SKF:

Goshi Hosono Short on Facts on Debris-Peddling Commercial

The Ministry of the Environment has a 2-minute-long commercial featuring Minister Goshi Hosono, aka disaster debris pusher, in front of the mountains of disaster debris in Ishinomaki City in Miyagi Prefecture.

Just about every single sentence he utters is short on facts and accuracy and full of misrepresentation.

From the Ministry of the Environment commercial below, translated and captioned by Tokyo Brown Tabby:

Hosono: As you can see, this is a huge mountain of debris.

Fact: Debris is actually neatly piled up, because it has been removed from the immediate coastal areas hit by the tsunami and is being stored there, as you can see at 0:26 into the video. But the disaster debris wide-area processing is being sold on the perception that the tsunami debris is still littering the streets and people’s backyards after one year.

Hosono: Ishinomaki City cannot complete the disposal alone.

Fact: In fact, the city can. The debris are being stored on the landfill on the bay, not bothering anyone nearby. The city has budgeted nearly 200 billion yen (US$2.4 billion) to do the debris disposal, building 5 new incineration plants on the landfill and in the process creating 1,250 jobs. None of the sister cities of Ishinomaki City has been asked to take the debris.

Hosono: The debris is the remnants of people’s lives.

Fact: Yes it is. So? Is that the reason to spread it all over Japan? Wouldn’t the pieces of lives of people in Ishinomaki want to remain in Ishinomaki?

Article continues at:

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Google’s “Memories for the Future” Project Has Before-and-After Streetviews of Japan’s Earthquake/Tsunami Affected Areas



People can also contribute the photos and videos, or ask for photos and videos of pre-earthquake/tsunami Japan. The page is only in Japanese:

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What they’re finding up in Minamisoma:


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Anonymous Source: Community of 6,000 people were assumed to have evacuated from high radiation area… They had not — Eventually happened 3 months after meltdowns — Gov’t doctor came and said ok to eat local food — “Iitate, I think, is finished”


  • 6,000 residents of Iitate village
  • One of the village’s former residents (now evacuated), who did not want to be named, said that Tweets sent out shortly after the explosions at the plant indicated that it was assumed that the village had already been evacuated
  • It had not
  • Younger residents in Iitate [tweeted] appeals for media coverage
  • [The unnamed resident] said from March 15 to 18, they were seeing media reports of high radiation in the area
  • Gov’t, which many older members of the community trusted, kept saying that everything was “fine”

Article continues at:

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Asahi: Japan objected to IAEA defining contamination zone for food

Asahi Shinbun’s English web-based news Asia Japan Watch has an article that says Japan’s Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency, Nuclear Safety Commission said no to IAEA’s proposal in 2005 to designate the area within the 300-kilometer radius from a nuclear plant as “an area where shipment bans on farm products and other measures would be implemented to regulate the intake of radioactive contaminated food”.

The 300-kilometer radius just about covers Shizuoka Prefecture, where radioactive cesium was detected in teas that exceeded the provisional safety limit.

Article continues at:

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Over 40% of Fukushima children do not understand much about radiation: poll

FUKUSHIMA (Kyodo) — A total of 95 out of 225 children, or 42 percent of respondents to a Kyodo News poll, who evacuated from areas near the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant but still reside in Fukushima Prefecture, said they do not understand much about radiation, according to the result of the survey released Sunday.

When asked about radiation, a total of 103 children, or 46 percent, said they are afraid of it in response to a multiple-choice question, but among them, 84 children said they became aware of the risks of radiation for the first time after the disaster at the crippled complex.

Only 17 said they knew of the risk before the disaster, according to the poll taken on fifth-grade elementary school and second-year middle school students.

A total of 75, or 33 percent, said they have been mindful about radiation or have become mindful for the first time after the accident in a question where they were asked to select one of four options.

Article continues at:

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Palestinian kids fly kites for Japan disaster

About 1,000 Palestinian children have flown handmade kites to show their solidarity with Japanese people trying to recover from last year’s earthquake and tsunami.

The event in the Gaza Strip on Sunday was organized by the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian Refugees.

Participants included children who attend schools built with aid from the Japanese government.

The “Kites of Hope” event began with a moment of silence for the victims of the disaster in eastern Japan. Some of the kites bore designs of Japanese and Palestinian flags.

One boy said Japanese people have helped Palestinians suffering under Israel’s economic blockade of Gaza, and this was a day for Palestinians to support Japan.

The kite-flying was originally scheduled for March 11th, the first anniversary of the disaster, but was delayed because of Israeli air attacks on Gaza.

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Monday, March 19, 2012 10:32 +0900 (JST)

Tsunami that hit around Fukushima nuke plant was 21 meters high: researchers

The Fukushima No. 1 Nuclear Power Plant, background, is pictured from a Mainichi helicopter above Minamisoma, Fukushima Prefecture, in this photo taken on Aug. 30, 2011. (Mainichi)

The Fukushima No. 1 Nuclear Power Plant, background, is pictured from a Mainichi helicopter above Minamisoma, Fukushima Prefecture, in this photo taken on Aug. 30, 2011. (Mainichi)

The tsunami that hit the Pacific coastline within what is now the no-go zone around the crippled Fukushima nuclear power plant topped 21 meters, researchers have found.

A team of researchers headed by University of Tokyo professor Shinji Sato and the Fukushima Prefectural Government found that up to 21.1 meters of tsunami had struck the coastal areas within a 20-kilometer radius from the Fukushima No. 1 Nuclear Power Plant on March 11, 2011.

Article continues at:

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Reactor 4 heated before the Tsunami attack




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