Day 518 Mother nature at it again

Mother nature put on a fine show of her powers this afternoon here in Nagoya, complete with rain, thunder, and a tremendous amount of lightning. There were power outages in places, and trains were stopped due to flooding.

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First off, in case you’d like to send a little message to Mr. Hosono, Minister of the Environment, here’s your chance:

From EX-SKF at:


Building a Fancy Website, Minister of the Environment Goshi Hosono Apologizes to Citizens and Says “We Will Do Better From Now On” (But Wide-Area Debris Disposal Will Continue)

On a site which looks like it cost a small fortune to design and built (probably by one of the major PR firms in Japan), Goshi Hosono as the Minister of the Environment (he is still the minister in charge of the nuclear accident) posted a letter to the citizens of Japan, apologizing for his past sins and promising a better future.

The site came online yesterday (August 10) in Japan.

Net citizens are laughing, or fuming with anger (either for the silly content or for Hosono wasting their money).

Poor Mr. Hosono. Can’t win no matter what, because he won’t do the only thing he can win – to stop the wide-area disaster debris disposal.

The site looks like this. The letter is written in a traditional Japanese format – from right to left, top to bottom. (Click to enlarge.):

Here’s what Mr. Hosono says (my best effort to retain the poetic prose of the original):

Letter to everyone [he says in an honorific form of Japanese, “みなさま”] – No.1
To Every Citizen of Japan.

Hello. This is Goshi Hosono, Minister of the Environment.

I believe that the Ministry of the Environment’s
way of communicating with you and
providing information to you hasn’t been optimal, and I am sorry.

Great East Japan Earthquake generated disaster debris, and
there are issues of decontamination, particularly in Fukushima Prefecture;
but we have to take back our environment where our children and grandchildren can live in safety,
and that’s our mission at the Ministry of the Environment.

However, to make you feel safe,
information has to be transmitted and explained to you in an easy-to-understand manner,
and we have failed, that’s the way I feel.
That has led to your distrust in the government, causing everyone who wants recovery
to doubt the government unnecessarily,
I reflect on it deeply.
I am very sorry.

We will change our way.
Problems occurring right now,
what we’re thinking, and what we’re actually doing,
by showing data,
we will explain to you so that you understand.

(further to the left, not in the image above)
As part of our effort, my personal thinking, and
what I would like to share with you,
in a few installments
I will tell you about them in a letter like this.
Thank you, and I look forward to communicating with you.

August 10th, 2012 (Heisei Year 24)

Goshi Hosono
Minister of the Environment

One thing Mr. Hosono, as a politician, doesn’t know how and doesn’t do well: to shut up, to keep quiet.

The bottom half of the web page has a form with which you can send your opinions and ideas. I added the labels for your reference. For the “location” field, the bottom of the drop down menu is “overseas” for those of you outside Japan. (Click to enlarge.)

Apparently many net citizens of Japan have been expressing their opinions using this page, and the server was down for a while. But now it’s back online.
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INTERVIEW/ Yuko Fujita: Lone wolf physicist calls for Nagasaki’s awakening

August 10, 2012


Long before the disastrous nuclear accidents at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant, physicist Yuko Fujita warned that doomsday was coming.

In fact, the former Keio University associate professor was so fearful of a nuclear disaster that in 2007 he moved to the western tip of Japan, in Nagasaki Prefecture, on the upwind side from all the nation’s 54 nuclear reactors. Ironically, Nagasaki is the site of the second atomic bombing in 1945.

While Japan has turned a deaf ear on his doomsday warning for 30 years, Fujita, 69, suddenly became a much sought-after lecturer after last year’s Fukushima accident following the Great East Japan Earthquake.

Fujita has been asked to speak on the dangers of radiation exposure at citizens’ gatherings across Japan on a weekly basis. But he said in a recent interview in Tokyo, “visits to eastern Japan have become a painful trip, as I have no words to console the audience.

Article continues at:


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Monju, Mihama nuke plant sites must be checked for active faults: panel

An expert panel to the Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency (NISA) has demanded that the sites of theMonju prototype fast-breeder reactor and the Mihama nuclear plant in Fukui Prefecture be checked for active fault lines.

Article continues at:

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IAEA only finds light damage at Onagawa

Staff writer

Although the Great East Japan Earthquake and tsunami wrecked the Fukushima No. 1 plant in Fukushima Prefecture, the younger Onagawa plant in neighboring in Miyagi was “remarkably undamaged” by the violent temblor and tsunami and safely shut down, experts from the International Atomic Energy Agency said Friday.

Article continues at:

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Naraha residents permitted to re-enter town, but overwhelmed with task ahead

Tamio Watanabe offers water to his ancestors at his family grave in the Fukushima Prefecture town of Naraha on Aug. 10. Buddhist bodhisattvas and other stone figures surrounding the grave remain where they fell during the Great East Japan Earthquake of March 11, 2011. (Mainichi)
Tamio Watanabe offers water to his ancestors at his family grave in the Fukushima Prefecture town of Naraha on Aug. 10. Buddhist bodhisattvas and other stone figures surrounding the grave remain where they fell during the Great East Japan Earthquake of March 11, 2011. (Mainichi)

NARAHA, Fukushima — With the lifting of this town’s no-entry status going into effect on Aug. 10, residents are returning to their homes for the first time since no-go zones were instituted in response to the Fukushima nuclear disaster in March last year.

The latest rezoning measures changed Naraha from a no-go zone to one in which preparations are being made to lift all evacuation orders, and residents are now allowed to travel freely in the town during the day. The timing coincided with the Buddhist bon festival in honor of the dead, with many returning residents visiting their families’ graves.

Article continues at:

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Fukushima Peaches to Be Exported to Thailand, Starting Late August

Buyers from Thailand say they are satisfied with the testing procedure that the Fukushima prefectural government has in place.

To recap that testing method (for more details about peaches in Fukushima, see my previous post about Fukushima peaches offered to the Imperial Family):

  • Take a small amount of sample from each peach farmer.
  • Test it using the NaI scintillation survey meter with high detection limit (probably 25 becquerels/kg).
  • If the sample registers more than 50 becquerels/kg, then test it with the germanium semiconductor detector that the prefectural government owns, again with relatively high detection limit (about 10 becquerels/kg).
  • If the sample tested using the germanium semiconductor detector has less than 100 becquerels/kg, all clear! 


 Article continues at:


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Friday Protest at Prime Minister Official Residence Losing Steam? Or Just the Summer Doldrums?

Not surprising, given the summer vacation and coming “obon“.

More and more people have started to openly say how immature some of the organizers of the Friday protests are in attacking anyone who doesn’t agree with them with vicious words. Some also say women from Fukushima Prefecture had been protesting in the Kantei (PM’s Official Residence) area long before they showed up.

Article continues at:

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And finally, for folks who are up on their Japanese, an NHK report from 24 July on how the radiation is suspected to have escaped the containment, even after “cold shutdown”. (sorry, I can’t embed the video.)

放射性物質の放出 冷却のさなかにも


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