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Former Prime Minister Admits Fukushima Almost Completely Destroyed Japan

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This Friday, it will officially have been 5 years since the Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami disabled Tepco’s nuclear power plant in Fukushima. But despite the passing of 5 years, we still don’t really know much damage this disaster really caused. We don’t know what the long-term effects will be on the environment, or on the people of Japan, and both Tepco and the Japanese government have lied to the world about the gravity of the situation.

And the situation is still much more serious than they’ve been letting on. We know that plant is still leaking radiation, we know the ocean and the area surrounding Fukushima is still radioactive, and we know that the nuclear power plant is a flimsy house of cards that could crumble at any moment.

But as bad as the situation was and still is at the Fukushima Daiichi Power Plant, believe it or not, it could have been far worse. In fact, Japan’s former Prime Minister, Naoto Kan, admitted that the country came within a “paper thin margin” of an apocalyptic disaster.

In an interview with The Telegraph to mark the fifth anniversary of the tragedy, Naoto Kan described the panic and disarray at the highest levels of the Japanese government as it fought to control multiple meltdowns at the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power station.

He said he considered evacuating the capital, Tokyo, along with all other areas within 160 miles of the plant, and declaring martial law. “The future existence of Japan as a whole was at stake,” he said. “Something on that scale, an evacuation of 50 million, it would have been like a losing a huge war.”

Could you imagine? I don’t think an evacuation of 50 million people has ever been attempted before, much less in a country that already has such a high population density. If the worst case scenario had come to pass, it would have been the biggest humanitarian disaster in history, and that’s not counting what the effects would have been outside of Japan. As for what that worst case scenario might have been, Prime Minister Kan explained:

“When we got the report that power had been cut and the coolant had stopped working, that sent a shiver down my spine,” Mr Kan said. “From March 11, when the incident happened, until the 15th, the effects [of radioactive contamination] were expanding geographically.

“From the 16th to the 20th we were able to halt the spread of radiation but the margin left for us was paper-thin. If the [fuel rods] had burnt through [in] all six reactors, that would definitely have affected Tokyo.

“From a very early stage I had a very high concern for Tokyo. I was forming ideas for a Tokyo evacuation plan in my head. In the 1923 earthquake the government ordered martial law – I did think of the possibility of having to set up such emergency law if it really came down to it.

“We were only able to avert a 250-kilometre (160-mile) evacuation zone [around the plant] by a wafer-thin margin, thanks to the efforts of people who risked their lives. Next time, we might not be so lucky.”

This would have spelled the end of Japan as we know it today. It would have also had huge ramification for the rest of the world. For five years we’ve been freaking out about the radioactive pollution that’s spewing out of that plant and into the Pacific Ocean. There’s no telling how screwed up the environment would have been if that plant had completely melted down.

In all likelihood, it would have also been utterly devastating for the global economy, which at the time was still reeling from the crash of 2008. Japan was and still is the world’s third largest economy. There’s a good chance that this disaster would have shattered markets everywhere, and ushered in a global depression. We would still be picking up the pieces today.

And worst of all, that rickety power plant is still sitting there, and Japan is still struggling to make it safe again. As bad as the Fukushima disaster could have been, we’re not out of the woods yet.

The Daily Sheeplel

12 Comments on "Former Prime Minister Admits Fukushima Almost Completely Destroyed Japan"

  1. Go Speed Racer on Wed, 9th Mar 2016 8:39 pm 

    Here we go again. Liberals and government welfare bums, bleating that they will work to make the reactor safe. What hogwash. It will never be safe. So drop off a really big Nuke bomb in the middle of the complex. KABOOM now it’s Miller Time, the whole thing is cleared flat. No more government welfare jobs pretending to clean up.

  2. makati1 on Wed, 9th Mar 2016 9:14 pm 

    The show isn’t over. The problem will linger for generations. There will be many more ‘Fukushimas’ before the end.

    ” Niigata nuclear reactor has control rod trouble”
    “TEPCO: 4 more years needed to stop radioactive water leaks at Fukushima”
    ‘The Fukushima Cleanup Will Take Generations”
    “Plutonium’s Global Problems Are Piling Up”
    “Five Years After Fukushima, ‘No End in Sight’ to Ecological Fallout”
    “Decontamination to take another year”
    “Ships prepare to return 331-kg plutonium stash from Japan to U.S.”
    ” 32,000 Fukushima No. 1 workers got high radiation dose, Tepco data show”
    “Mutations, DNA damage seen in Fukushima forests, says Greenpeace”
    ” FIVE YEARS AFTER: 45% of mayors in affected areas see delayed recovery”
    “2011 Tohoku disaster-displaced to remain in shelters up to 10 years, study finds”
    “3,400 survivors of 2011 disaster have since died”
    “U.S. NRC engineers urge fix for nuclear power stations”
    “Borehole project for exploring nuclear waste disposal shut down”
    “30 years on, Norway’s radioactive reindeer are a stark reminder of Chernobyl legacy”
    And on and on…

    Cancers will be a major problem for a collapsed society. Radiation, poisoned soil from Monsanto profits, poisoned water from all kinds of uncontrolled sources, genetically altered foods, etc. Slow, and usually painful, death. Not a pleasant future for all of us.

  3. Kenz300 on Wed, 9th Mar 2016 9:34 pm 

    Nuclear energy is poisoning the planet…………

    5 Years After Fukushima, ‘No End in Sight’ to Ecological Fallout

  4. Pennsyguy on Wed, 9th Mar 2016 9:59 pm 

    Nuclear power was supposed to transform life on Earth for the better for everyone. The U.S. was expected to have at least 1,000 reactors by 2000. Of course we hear the same things about–take your pick–renewables, fracking, fusion, etc.,etc.

  5. theedrich on Thu, 10th Mar 2016 3:44 am 

    Renewables to Fukushima’s rescue!  That is what politicians everywhere (most recently Bernie Sanders and Hotflash Clitory) are telling us.  Meanwhile, accidents, wars, severe disruptions of every type are causing upheaval.  If Fukushima had melted down entirely, the world would have been instantaneously presented with an unimaginable Japanese refugee crisis.  Of course, the Japs are far more civilized than the Allahlanders, but it would still probably have caused a social meltdown worldwide.  What countries would have suddenly accepted so many desitute immigrants?  It is doubtful that even Mad Maxine Merkel could have persuaded her genosuicidal politburo to take them all in.

    Given the demographic and socio-economic stress the world is already enduring, that one incident could have caused global collapse.  In desperate straits governments do desperate things.  (One of our overlords’ cute tricks is to put other countries in said desperate straits, then attack them when they react in desperation, e.g., Libya, Syria and, back in the early 20th century, Germany.)

    Only today, WMD technology can suddenly depopulate even large, seemingly powerful countries so that new people can move in.

  6. steveo on Thu, 10th Mar 2016 8:16 am 

    Water moderated, solid fuel reactors are inherently unsafe and inefficient. They should have been retired by now. There were other systems that were safer and had higher fuel burn up rates, but they were never developed for political reasons.

    Is there any other 50 year old technology that we are still using unchanged?

  7. paulo1 on Thu, 10th Mar 2016 8:34 am 

    Mak is right. So are the rest of you. I am glad not to be living anywhere near a nuke plant. I am sorry for those who do, and I feel shitty about what has been done to the environment in the name of progress and consumption.

    Payback is going to be a bitch. We’re just starting.

  8. Practicalmaina on Thu, 10th Mar 2016 9:18 am 

    Lucky me, new Yorks plants as well as coal and manufacturing all down wind. And our stupid governor turned down free healthcare money from Obama, one of the oldest states in the country and some of the highest asthma and cancer problems. CEO’S who profit off poison shouldn’t be fined, they should be force fed their toxins.

    Paulo what you said a couple days ago about rather using your chainsaw and splitter than picking up sticks. It is the big oaks, (the ones that rack up the chords :)) that are the most Forrest fire hearty. Picking up dead tinder for use and selective cutting and management is the best fire protection possible IMHO, and unfortunately I think we will all need to be considering these things.

  9. Practicalmaina on Thu, 10th Mar 2016 9:24 am 

    If fukushima had renewables in place Pre meltdown they could have used the juice to prevent this meltdown.
    Let’s compare tech,
    Nuclear-any power distribution, maintenance, weather issue, bird issue, huge health and safety issues, extremely high energy and monetary costs up front. Storage issues plague us.

    Coal and gas, require diesel to drill and produce constantly, leads to more pollution, temporary cheap power to encourage waste and our own demise.
    Decreasing EROEI

    Renewables, energy and money intensive at first. Need to pollute to some extent once every life cycle, say 25 years. Increasing EROEI

  10. Kenz00 on Thu, 10th Mar 2016 11:51 am 

    Nuclear energy is toxic to people and the planet…..

    7 Top NRC Experts Break Ranks to Warn of Critical Danger at Aging Nuke Plants

  11. vox_mundi on Thu, 10th Mar 2016 1:13 pm 

    News coverage of Fukushima disaster found lacking

    (WASHINGTON, D.C.) March 10, 2016 — Five years after the 2011 Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster in Japan, the disaster no longer dominates U.S. news headlines, although experts say it is a continuing disaster with broad implications. A new analysis by American University sociology professor Celine-Marie Pascale finds that U.S. news media coverage following the disaster minimized health risks to the general population.

    Pascale analyzed more than 2,000 news articles from four major U.S. outlets following the disaster’s occurrence from March 11, 2011 through March 11, 2013. Only 6 percent of the coverage–129 articles–focused on health risks to the public in Japan or elsewhere. Human risks were framed, instead, in terms of workers in the disabled nuclear plant. Pascale’s research has published in the flagship journal for the International Sociology Association, Current Sociology.

    Pascale’s article illustrates how systematic media practices minimized the presence of health risks, contributed to misinformation, and exacerbated uncertainties.

    Pascale’s analysis initially characterized the risk to the general population in one of three ways: low, uncertain, or high. However, when examining the bases on which these characterizations were made, it was clear that all media characterizations of uncertain risk were subsequently interpreted as evidence of low risk. In two years of reporting, across all four media outlets, there were only a combined total of 17 articles reporting any noteworthy risk from the largest nuclear disaster in history.

    Corporations and government agencies had disproportionate access to framing the event in the media, Pascale says. Even years after the disaster, government and corporate spokespersons constituted the majority of voices published. News accounts about local impact–for example, parents organizing to protect their children from radiation in school lunches–were also scarce.

    “The mainstream media–in print and online–did little to report on health risks to the general population or to challenge the narratives of public officials and their experts,” Pascale said. “Discourses of the risks surrounding disasters are political struggles to control the presence and meaning of events and their consequences. How knowledge about disasters is reported can have more to do with relations of power than it does with the material consequences to people’s lives.”

  12. Kenz300 on Fri, 11th Mar 2016 10:38 am 

    Fukushima Should Have Served as Wake-Up Call for U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission

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