Category Archives: Japan

From shovels to water fukushima radiation cleanup is trial and error

English: The after the Polski: Zniszczenia na ...

By Mari Yamaguchi

FUKUSHIMA —

Workers in rubber boots chip at the frozen ground, scraping until they’ve removed the top 5 centimeters of radioactive soil from the yard of a single home. Total amount of waste gathered: roughly 60 tons.

One down, tens of thousands to go. And since wind and rain spread radiation easily, even this yard may need to be dug up again.

The work is part of a monumental task: a costly and uncertain effort by Japan to try to make radiation-contaminated communities inhabitable again. Some contractors are experimenting with chemicals; others stick with shovels and high-pressure water. One government expert says it’s mostly trial and error.

The radiation leak has slowed considerably at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant, nearly one year after the March 11 earthquake and tsunami sent three of its reactors into meltdown. Work continues toward a permanent shutdown, but the Japanese government declared the plant stable in December, setting the stage for the next phase: decontaminating the area so that at least some of the 100,000 evacuated residents can return.

Experts leading the government-funded project cannot guarantee success. They say there’s no prior model for what they’re trying to do. Even if they succeed, they’re creating another problem they don’t yet know how to solve: where to dump all the radioactive soil and debris they haul away.

The government has budgeted 1.15 trillion yen through March 2014 for the cleanup, which could take decades.

read more at    www.japantoday.com

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Official found dead, head covered with plastic bag after measuring radiation in Tokyo park

Tokyo towerMadison Ruppert, Contributing Writer

According to a Japanese news outlet, Iza, on July 1st, 2011 63-year-old Mr. Takashi Kabayama was found dead with a plastic bag over his head in his home office.

Kabayama was a member of the Tokyo Metropolitan Assembly for the Liberal Democratic Party and had been measuring radiation in an assortment of locations throughout Tokyo. He would then upload his findings to his blog for the world to read, and on the day before he died (June 30, 2011) he measured 0.25 microSv/h in Mizumoto Park in the Katsushika ward located in Tokyo.

Fukushima Diary reported on February 22, 2012 via Gendai that ludicrously high levels of cesium contamination were discovered, also in Mizumoto Park. These levels were so high that they “turned out to be the same level of [the] ‘off-limits zone’ in Chernobyl.”

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US seizes assets of Japan’s number one criminal “godfather”

The “godfather” leader of Japan’s biggest organised crime group has been blacklisted in the United States as part of a major crackdown on the world’s most powerful gangs.

Kenichi Shinoda, the number one boss at the helm of the Yamaguchi-gumi

Kenichi Shinoda, the number one boss at the helm of the Yamaguchi-gumi, Japan’s most prominent “yakuza” family, and his number two Kiyoshi Takayama, have had their assets seized in the US and have been banned from financial transactions.

The clampdown follows a series of attempts by Japanese authorities to limit the illegal activities of “yakuza” organisations, which have operated openly in Japan for decades.

Shinoda operates the Yamaguchi-gumi, which is headquartered in Kobe city and is the largest of Japan’s yakuza organisations, with an estimated 34,900 members, according to National Police Agency figures.

The organisation is estimated to generate billions of pounds every year from international operations including trafficking in weapons, humans and drugs as well prostitution, market manipulation, extortion and money laundering.

Shinoda, the current godfather — known as “kumicho” in Japanese — has a colourful record of criminal activity, most recently emerging from jail in April last year, wearing a red leather hat and sunglasses, after serving six years for illegal gun possession.

The 70-year-old leader, who is believed to have masterminded an aggressive expansion of the organisation since taking over seven years ago, previously spent time in prison after he killed a rival with a samurai sword.

read more at               refreshingnews9.blogspot.in

Japan clears up only 5% of tsunami rubble

English: Fallen power poles in Ishinomaki, Miy...

Japan has cleared up just five percent of the rubble left by last year’s earthquake and tsunami, the government said Tuesday, amid fears it has been contaminated following the Fukushima nuclear accident. The twin disasters, which devastated the northeastern coastal communities last year, left almost 23 million tonnes of rubble in the hardest-hit prefectures of Iwate, Miyagi and Fukushima alone. Getting rid of the giant piles of debris is essential for communities in the disaster zone to be rebuilt. But despite calls for national solidarity contamination fears have led local authorities around the country to refuse to allow the debris to be disposed of near them.

 

newsonjapan.com

Seabed near nuke plant to be paved

 

English: One of the photos taken at the Fukush...

The Yomiuri Shimbun

Tokyo Electric Power Co. has announced a plan to cover the seabed adjacent to the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant with a coating material composed of clay and cement as a new measure to prevent the spread of soil contaminated with radioactive substances.

According to TEPCO’s announcement on Tuesday, the coating material will be placed in areas surrounded by breakwaters and silt fences that had already been installed. The work of laying the coating material on the seabed is set to be started later this month and completed in three to four months.

The coating material, which will be about 60 centimeters thick, will cover areas stretching along a total of 900 meters of shoreline to a distance of 80 meters out. The 72,000-square-meter area is equivalent to 5.5 times the field area of Tokyo Dome.

Seawater pollution is serious around the crippled nuclear power plant, mainly due to leakage of contaminated water. Last November, tests of seabed soil next to the plant’s No. 4 reactor found up to 1.6 million becquerels of radioactive cesium per kilogram.

TEPCO has installed silt fences to prevent the spread of radioactive materials to surrounding areas of the sea. However, as the company expects working vessels to more frequently enter the area around the nuclear power plant, it decided to take more reliable measures.

The life span of the material is estimated at about 50 years. TEPCO will consider later what measures to take after that.

Seabed near nuke plant to be paved

 

English: One of the photos taken at the Fukush...

The Yomiuri Shimbun

Tokyo Electric Power Co. has announced a plan to cover the seabed adjacent to the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant with a coating material composed of clay and cement as a new measure to prevent the spread of soil contaminated with radioactive substances.

According to TEPCO’s announcement on Tuesday, the coating material will be placed in areas surrounded by breakwaters and silt fences that had already been installed. The work of laying the coating material on the seabed is set to be started later this month and completed in three to four months.

The coating material, which will be about 60 centimeters thick, will cover areas stretching along a total of 900 meters of shoreline to a distance of 80 meters out. The 72,000-square-meter area is equivalent to 5.5 times the field area of Tokyo Dome.

Seawater pollution is serious around the crippled nuclear power plant, mainly due to leakage of contaminated water. Last November, tests of seabed soil next to the plant’s No. 4 reactor found up to 1.6 million becquerels of radioactive cesium per kilogram.

TEPCO has installed silt fences to prevent the spread of radioactive materials to surrounding areas of the sea. However, as the company expects working vessels to more frequently enter the area around the nuclear power plant, it decided to take more reliable measures.

The life span of the material is estimated at about 50 years. TEPCO will consider later what measures to take after that.

Radiation found 640 km off coast of Fukushima

English: The after the

Radioactivity from the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant disaster has been detected as far away as 643 km offshore in the Pacific Ocean.
Scientists say ocean water showed readings of up to 1,000 times prior levels of cesium-137 from the stricken Fukushima plant. But they say the new readings are far below the levels that are generally considered harmful, either to marine animals or people who eat seafood.

The results are from water samples taken in June, about three months after the disaster caused by a powerful earthquake and the tsunami that followed.

The findings were reported Tuesday at a scientific meeting in the United States.

  read more at        www.japantimes.co.jp

Japan, China to coordinate on IMF efforts on euro zone

Japan and China agreed they will jointly respond to any funding request from the International Monetary Fund, which is looking to more than double the size of its war chest to help countries deal with the euro zone crisis.

Japanese Finance Minister Jun Azumi, after meetings with Chinese Vice Premier Wang Qishan and Finance Minister Xie Xuren, said the two countries were ready to support the IMF but further efforts by euro zone members were necessary.

“What we agreed on…is that European countries need to do more, although (the situation), including Greece, is headed in a good direction,” Azumi told reporters in Beijing.

“We can expect some sort of request from the IMF to those including the United States, Japan and China. We agreed that Japan and China will coordinate closely and will jointly respond to IMF.”

The IMF is seeking to raise US$600 billion in new resources to help deal wit the euro zone debt crisis but countries outside of the 17-country euro bloc want to see its members stump up more money before they commit additional resources to the IMF.

Azumi said the two sides did not discuss the specific size of any funding support for the IMF although a Japanese finance ministry official said Tokyo was willing to commit a “sizeable” amount.

“The idea is Japan and China will coordinate, not compete, on any IMF action,” the official said, adding that both countries were fully aware of their importance in dealing with the crisis.

China, which has been consistently reluctant to make firm financial commitments, is seen as having the financial firepower to bail out some European governments given its US$3.2 trillion worth foreign exchange reserves at hand.

Earlier in the month, Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao said the world’s No. 2 economy is considering increasing its participation in the European rescue funds and is still studying how it might go about doing it, including possibly through the IMF.

http://www.buenosairesherald.com/article/93196/japan-china-to-coordinate-on-imf-efforts-on-euro-zone

 

HUGE explosion on Sakurajima Volcano in Japan!