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The Fukushima Disaster
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The Fukushima Disaster

Do you remember the Fukushima nuclear disaster of March 11, 2011? If you don’t, here is a recap:

A 9.0 earthquake shook the grounds of the East coast of Japan and a tsunami followed quickly. The Fukushima Daiishi nuclear power plant looses all of its outside energy, which means that it can no longer cool itself. Within just a few days, three of the reactors melted and hydrogen explosions destroy reactor buildings.

On March 12th, evacuation begins. Many fled themselves without being told. The area that is believed to be contaminated is over 20 km in diameter.

On March 23rd, Greenpeace scientists assess the situation and discover that the affected area reaches as far as 40 km. The Japanese government rejects these findings only to be told later, by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), that Greenpeace was right.

Since the Japanese government still won’t do what it should, Greenpeace steps forward and asks pregnant women and children to evacuate contaminated areas. They also discover that food is contaminated in several grocery stores and calls upon the government to act. The government responds by raising the no-risk level of radiation contamination by 20 times more than the accepted international level.

Even though several tons of radioactive waste leaked into the ocean due to the earthquake, the TEPCO (owners of the reactors) has been dumping several thousand tons a year into the ocean, endangering both the wildlife and those who consume fish from the ocean in that area. Furthermore, this release of radioactive waste will also surely endanger all forms of life in that area for decades to come.

This accident definitely proves that the use of nuclear is far too dangerous to justify it. Furthermore, the cost of cleaning the spills is incredibly high, on top of the damage done to the lives of those who were affected.

In total, 160,000 people had to flee the affected area, even though some still maintain that the area was wider than accepted by the Japanese government.

However, the most shocking part is yet to come. World-renowned companies such as General Electric, Hitachi and Toshiba were involved in the design, construction and servicing of the Fukushima reactors. However, immediately after the disaster, they simply walked away without looking back, not even to write a cheque to help cover the cost of cleaning up, which is estimated at around $250 billion US.

The Japanese are the ones who are now burdened with the cost of mopping up that mess and have spent $43.7 billion US of their own taxes, which is far from sufficient to cover the full cost. The Red Cross, which is involved in the care of the displaced population, believes that it will take quite some time before it is safe for anyone to return home.

Despite knowing the dangers of these reactors, several countries across the world turn a blind eye and a deaf ear on those who request they learn to act more responsibly.  Companies are permitted to build reactors and the problems, although aren't frequent, are very high.

To sign the petition requesting that the companies involved step up to the plate and mend their wrongs and, if you can, donate to Greenpeace, click here.

You can also send an email to the heads of these companies to tell them that you will boycott them until they take responsability for their actions.

 

 

Please vote if you believe this article deserves it!

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  1. Veganara
    Veganara
    Voted. A really shocking incident, I have signed the petition. Japan must be so contaminated with radiation by now, after this, and also the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki! I know the latter 2 were about 60 years ago, but apparently the effects of radiation stay around for many years. PS I have written a blog for Bubblews about the Oscar Pistorius case, please check it out when you get a chance! :-)
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    1. SnakeWitch
      Will do! I have to post something new on there soon!
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  2. Pierre
    Voted on this. I am in Italy and even here we are worried for what happens in Russia. Japan is not the only one to have nuclar problems.
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    1. SnakeWitch
      I have no doubt about that! I am pointing this one out because I got an email just today from Greenpeace about the companies behind the construction of the reactors.
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  3. No Name
    I have to vote on this. This problem in Japan has also come here to the islands. Years ago France came here to test nuclar bombs here on one of out far reached islands. The people who worked there are so sick now and France is saying it had nothing to do with their test. But the doctors say different. After the last test the Tahitian people almost destoryed the airport and the port city of Papeete. Now France no longer tests here on our islands it has been stopped and now the clean up is left to us. Good aritical.
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    1. SnakeWitch
      France is another country notorious for its lack of respect for international laws. They're almost as bad a Japan... !!
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  4. Conroy
    We all worry for this around the world. I think after Russia we were all scared here in Europe for this one. After Russia now Japan, Very well done voted
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    1. SnakeWitch
      thanks!
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  5. Bernice
    This is so true. Here I worry about this all the time. Not far from us is a Nuclare power plant and I wonder one day if this one could happen here. I have tried to vote for you but says I am all out of votes for now. I do not know how many votes I have each day. I came and voted on some other posts. I promise you tomorrow I will be back first thing to give you a vote on this one. I agree with you on this and I have to vote for this. I am sorry again I clicked on vote and says I am out of votes for today. Now I wish I could take back one of my other votes and vote on this instead. Please wait I promise tomorrow I will vote on this one for you.
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    1. SnakeWitch
      No worries - I can wait until tomorrow! And yes, this sort of information needs to be made public!
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      1. Bernice
        I came back today as promised and voted.
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  6. Theophile
    Theophile
    Being from Tahiti and like my Aunt said this is a must vote for us here on the islands. We stopped France but now so many of my people pay for this and are sick from the testing here on the islands. it has been 14 years now but still today we feel the effects of this on the islands. I voted for you hope more people will sign this and vote too.
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    1. SnakeWitch
      I believe that. It is so true that radiation lasts and lasts ....
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  7. Terry McGee
    Voted. Like the others said being Tahitian I have to vote on this one. Excellent information. We still fight with France here on the islands.
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    1. SnakeWitch
      Oh, how I am sure that is true. I'm French-Canadian, after all, and know how our culture (even if we're not exactly the same, we're still from the same bloodline) can be temperamental, perseverant and.... we like to get our way. I won't deny it!
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  8. Shiela
    Just voted. Being from China this is so real to us here and now some people are sick from this.
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    1. SnakeWitch
      true!
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  9. Veggie
    Oh my what a horrible memory for many, but horrifying real for all that lived there, and the surrounding areas. The nuclear waste from this one incident is hard to wrap ones mind around, but your article says it well. Voted!
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    1. SnakeWitch
      Thanks! It's so important to talk about it!
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  10. kristo
    kristo
    voted! I wonder about the radioactive food and if the land is still contaminated to an extent. How would you know if you were consuming a nuclear cucumber? I watched a documentary recently about a radioactive village in Kazakhstan, where the locals are unaware of the dangers and go about their lives, farming and drinking river water! It's horrifying. There are not many ways to tell unless you are a scientist.
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    1. SnakeWitch
      Apparently, at times, it is obvious because they develop into strange shapes, such as the two-headed carrots we sometimes see - that's due to things like chemicals or radiation waste in the water used on the farm. But until they get to that point, there's no other way of knowing except scientific testing, like you said. Yep, pretty bad. That's why NGOs are on the case!
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    2. Akanksha
      Akanksha
      horrifying it is...
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  11. Shabs Online
    Shabs Online
    This is horrifying !! :-| We can't even imagine what this may lead us to in future. We shall unwrap our eyes n ears towards this. I just signed the petition. very well raised topic...Thnz! Voted!
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    1. SnakeWitch
      Thanks for signing!
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  12. Akanksha
    Akanksha
    Its a very scary post Annie..I wonder is this how the world is going to end!
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    1. SnakeWitch
      I think it's a possibility. That, or too many environmentally-related disasters.
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  13. No Name
    Congrats on this one. I feel like everyone here should vote for this and sign all possible papers to prevent this from happening again. Here we are still testing the soil after the bomb testing here on one of our outer islands. We fear that this island will never be able to be used again and nobody can live on it. This has been 15 years since the last bomb was tested here but still the soil is contaminated and can not be used. I have a new recipe I think you can even make. It is simple and all you do is layer in a pan and bake it. If you have time please check out Vegan Zucchini Bake Non Dairy free and if you like please leave a comment and vote. Thanks and I am happy that you wrote this. Everyone should be aware of these issues.
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