Fukushima Parents Send Radioactive Schoolyard Dirt To Japanese Officials To Protest New Radiation Limits.

From the department of in your face, office of how does it feel now:

source: Labornet Asia

Fukushima Parents Send Radioactive Dirt Collected From Fukushima Schoolyard Emitting 38 Millisieverts Per Hour Of Radiation To Japanese Officials To Protest New Radiation Limits.
Fukushima parents dish the dirt in protest over radiation levels
Furious Fukushima parents dump school playground earth that may have radiation levels well above the old safety level -- 
Parents in Fukushima are angry over rule changes which mean that school children can be exposed to 20 times more radiation than was previously permissible.

Jonathan Watts in Tokyo
The Guardian, Mon 2 May 2011 16.43 BST

Furious parents in Fukushima have delivered a bag of radioactive playground earth to education officials in protest at moves to weaken nuclear safety standards in schools.

Children can now be exposed to 20 times more radiation than was previously permissible. The new regulations have prompted outcry. A senior adviser resigned and the prime minister, Naoto Kan, was criticised by politicians from his own party.

Ministers have defended the increase in the acceptable safety level from 1 to 20 millisieverts per year as a necessary measure to guarantee the education of hundreds of thousands of children in Fukushima prefecture, location of the nuclear plant that suffered a partial meltdown and several explosions after the earthquake and tsunami on 11 March.

It is estimated that 75% of Fukushima’s schools may have radiation levels above the old safety level of 1 millisievert. The local authorities in Koriyama have tried to ease the problem by digging up the top layer of soil in school and day centre playgrounds, but residents near the proposed dump site have objected.

The new standard of 20 millisieverts a year – equivalent to the annual maximum dose for German nuclear workers – will mean those schools remain open, but parents and nuclear opponents are angry that safety concerns are being ignored.

Read more

via Alexander Higgins' Blog Nice.


More info -- and links -  thanks to Labornet Asia

Some 200 people gathered at a study conference on Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant and the disaster titled, “Protect Fukushima’s Children from Radiation!” on April 30. Kazumasa Aoki of a group to think about aging Fukushima Plant, reported on many messages from parents in Fukushima Prefecture regarding the issue on 20 mSv level. “We can see their concerns and anger in the messages,” Aoki said at the conference, held at Tokyo’s Zensuido Kaikan.
 Fukushima parents are ready to stand up for their children after they expressed their determination at a rally on May 1 in Fukushima to protect the children from radiation. Representatives from the prefecture were to gather on May 2 to demand that the government, Ministry of Education and Science and Nuclear Safety Agency revise the 20mSv level. “We will deliver soil from Fukushima schools to Ministry of Education and Science on the 2nd,” Seiichi Nakate,photographer and representative of Fukushima conference on reconstruction from the nuclear disaster, said. “We will not return to Fukushima until the government revises the level of radiation.” This is the time we must strive in the nation’s capital is questioned. (By Masanori Yumoto) See report & video on UnionTube.

This was the work of Nakate's group!  to quote my recent post:

Here is a press release I found which includes contact numbers for Seiichi Nakate, the gentleman who  stood up so bravely in an effort to get an official clarification of the radiation dose limits set for Fukushima citizens.  It seems these health limits are different for them than for people living elsewhere in Japan. (See that video here). He is also the loving father appealing to the world for help (video here); and he organized the citizens group to put pressure on the government to have a certain corrupt "smile and radiation will not hurt you' man removed from his job as 'radiation health risk advisor' (video here, update here).

Be seeing you.

Tepco & Co: Some People's Children

"The State of Japan, not TepCo, should compensate victims of the
Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Disaster" 
Says Head of Japanese Business Association, 
In Bid To Reconnect Us With Our Feelings

Hiromasa Yonekura, chairman of the Nippon Keidanren business leaders' (employer's) federation, a man obviously motivated by a desire to reawaken everyone's numbed sense of outrage during this crisis, had the chutzpah to tell AFP in an interview in Paris that Tepco does not owe anybody any compensation, whatsoever, for anything.  That, he assures us, is Japan's responsibility.  

After all, if it wasn't for Japan, there would be no country in which to have the disaster, right?  

Almost as (un)believable: No one, no one could possibly have predicted the earthquake and tsunami.  He really said that. 

Taking advantage of the stunned silence, he did not stop there.  Perhaps he saw this sort of confrontation as sport, much like Mr. Tony Hayward.  According to the AFP he chided the state for blaming Tepco: "They are getting away from taking any kind of responsibility" they had to the victims of the disaster, "So I am openly criticising the government in respect of compensation...."

Let him, let Tepco, get away with this and just watch: next it will be Tepco itself among those victims to whom the State owes compensation.  Oh look, here it begins in his very next statement.  "And those Tepco people, who are really working hard, have also lost their families and homes and they are working just in front, exposing themselves to higher level radiation."  


"If by 'work with,' you mean..."

Do not misunderstand me.  I think the people putting their lives on the line at the Daiichi plant deserve our deepest respect and gratitude.  They also deserve Tepco's, which, if failed and too-few radiation monitors, increased maximum dose standards, and faulty, inadequate protective gear (for starters) are any indication, they are not getting.  In fact I think it is an understatement to say that Tepco has failed to respect or appreciate their workers adequately.

These are not 'those Tepco people.' 

These are the people employed by 'those Tepco people.'

In the case of such an extreme catastrophe, it is the Governments responsibility --- because it was Government standards to which Tepco was forced to adhere! "Tepco built this plant on the basis of a safety standard which was set by the government and they have been operating in accordance with Japanese regulations."

Some people's children.  

I am too floored to think of  a proper analogy.

source - AFP, via Google news.

The Good News:

(Gentle Readers, hopefully it will remain so):

Tokyo Electric Power should face unlimited liability for damages stemming from its crippled nuclear power plant, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano said on Monday, indicating Japan's government will take a hard line against the utility in its rescue plan....


The decision on who bears compensation costs will hinge in part on the interpretation of Japanese law, which states that a nuclear plant operator can be granted an exemption from paying damages if an accident was caused by "a grave natural disaster of an exceptional character".
Edano has repeatedly said he does not believe the accident at Tepco's Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant should qualify for that exemption. On Monday he reiterated that stance and said Tepco should not be offered the relief of a payment ceiling.
"At a Diet session in 1961, a grave natural disaster of an exceptional character was explained as one beyond the imagination of humankind," Edano told a parliament committee. "The (March 11) earthquake was a very large one, but it was of a scale that had been experienced by humankind in the past."


"The scheme needs to enable Tokyo Electric to get investment-grade ratings ...."I think everyone involved in making the scheme shares the same view that we are not bailing out Tokyo Electric, rather we are trying to protect the system.... 


...isn't funny how they call it a 'scheme' ("スキーム", there appears to be only one way to properly translate it, according to Google and Jim Breen. Linguistic analysis to the right - click to, hopefully, enlarge)....

Other Tepco related news:

On Tuesday, the government released about 5,000 bits of data showing hourly predictions from March 11th. The information appears on the websites of the Nuclear Safety Commission and other entities..... Such data had been withheld for fear of causing panic.

Goshi Hosono, secretary general of the joint task force set up by the government and the Tokyo Electric Power Company,... apologized on Monday for the delay....  He said that he now believes that panic can be avoided if proper explanations are offered. Hosono promised to release data promptly in the future.

Physicians for Social Responsibility, a U.S. nonprofit organization of medical experts, has condemned as “unconscionable” the Japanese government’s safety standards on radiation levels at elementary...

Yes. So does Arnie Gundersen.

Be seeing you.