So here’s a round up of stories I’ve come across in the last little while that I’ve tweeted or retweeted but haven’t exactly put on here.
From the NHK – Fukushima transfer of highly contaminated water to waste water facility begins, Tepco says. Water was accumulated in the turbine bldg basement.
From Steve Herman at VoA – Japan chief gov’t spokesman says no chance of total meltdown at Fukushima-1 if cooling efforts continue.
Daily Yomiuri – JR East says it plans to have the entire Tohoku Shinkansen line between Tokyo and Shin-Aomori back in operation on about April 30.
“Japan’s road to recovery and rebirth” (Op-ed by Prime Minister Kan to Washington Post). A choice quote below
Bringing the situation under control at the earliest possible date is my top priority. Leading a unified effort by the government, I have mobilized all available resources to combat the risks posed by the plant, based on three principles: First, give the highest priority to the safety and health of all citizens, in particular those residents living close to the plant; second, conduct thorough risk management; and, third, plan for all possible scenarios so that we are fully prepared to respond to any future situations. For example, we continue to make the utmost efforts to address the issue of outflow of radioactive water from the plant into the ocean. In addition, the government has taken every possible measure to ensure the safety of all food and other products, based on strict scientific criteria. We have taken great precautions to ensure the safety of all Japanese food and products that have reached and will continue to reach markets. To ensure domestic and foreign consumer confidence in the safety of Japanese food and products, my administration will redouble its efforts to maintain transparency and keep everyone informed of our progress in the complex and evolving circumstances at the Fukushima Daiichi plant.
A few choice quotes below
Beleaguered Tepco Chairman Tsunehisa Katsumata, who hinted he might quit over the accident, said the utility needs three months to achieve a “steady reduction” in radiation and three to six more to get a handle on the emissions. This would be done by covering heavily damaged reactor buildings 1, 3 and 4, he said.
This next part is the first I’ve heard of this, but remember, I’ve been away for 9 days.
In another development, the U.S. government has suggested Japan use a special unmanned cargo helicopter to set up cranes to remove the hazardous spent-fuel rods from the plant, Japanese and U.S. sources said Saturday.
If that doesn’t make you read the whole article, I don’t know what will.
And if you wanted more on the robots and conditions at the reactors from the BBC: Robots record high radiation levels at Japan reactor.
And finally an article from Time Magazine that sums up everything, obviously posted just after I finished writing this whole blog. Fresh Concerns Emerge as Japan Unveils Timetable for Fukushima Shut Down
From The Japanese Prime Minister’s Office: Video in English: Press Conference by the Chief Cabinet Secretary Edano (April 19th, 2011, at 9:44)
UPDATE: I’m adding this in because it’s disgusting and sad, note that he does say “many people do support the disaster victims,” because that part is actually important. But still. Via NHK, National Policy Minister Koichiro Gemba: Fukushima Residents feeling discrimination
National Policy Minister Koichiro Gemba says people from Fukushima Prefecture are being discriminated against because of the radiation escaping from the damaged nuclear power plant….
Radiation Links (thanks Warren):
Also from the UK – Nuclear Situation in Japan: Frequently Asked Questions
And last but not least, I’ve linked this before but I’m bringing it up again. Use this link! From the Fukushima International Association – Emergency Information from the Disaster Provision Main Office of Fukushima Prefecture
Main Website is here: http://www.worldvillage.org/
The newest Fukushima JET Fundraising group I’ve seen. Friends of Soma. A bit of a description below taken from the site.
Our goal is simple: we want to help rebuild the lives of students who were affected by the tsunami in Soma, Japan.
Friends of Soma is focused on helping the students of Soma Higashi High School, where several students have lost their homes and belongings. Without a home, clothing, school uniform, or school supplies, many of these students cannot attend High School or return to their regular lives. Friends of Soma is focused on helping specific students within the Soma community. Soma Higashi High School is located in Soma, Fukushima, Japan. All donations are significant, as 100% of donations will be distributed to families of these students through Soma Higashi High School.
For the Japanese language enthusiast in you, here are a couple Japanese charities that have been working in the Iwaki Region. I’d love to tell you what they’re all about, but my English isn’t even that good on a regular basis.
After one week up for sale on Amazon, these are some of the stats for 2:46: Aftershocks: Stories from the Japan Earthquake:
Rank: #319 Paid in Kindle Store
#1 in Books > Nonfiction > Current Events > Disaster Relief
#1 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Nonfiction > Politics & Current Events > Disaster Relief
#5 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Nonfiction > Social Sciences
That’s all for now. I have a few other things in the pipe coming up, but more along the lines of reflections and literary wafflings (read: me mashing at the keyboard). Catch you in a bit.