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This Week’s Update (March 11, 2013)

GEPR Editorial Staff View PDF

It is two years from the Great East Japan Earthquake disaster. We would like to extend our deepest condolence and sympathy for the victims of the disaster and of the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant accident.

This Week’s Update

1) This week, we took up observations over nuclear power plant by two prominent writers in Japan.  

Tetsuo Takashima, popular novelist, is known for his realistic novels about disaster and crisis based on detailed data collection and his scientific knowledge. In the Great East Japan Earthquake and the Fukushima nuclear accident, his novel became the center of attention to have predicted the incident. Furthermore, he was playing an active part as a nuclear engineer.

He contributed “Why I cannot abandon nuclear power plant” (in Japanese, English coming soon). With international viewpoint and considering time-axis, he points out the danger of "crushing the bud of technology".

2) “From a lecture of Ryusho Kadota, author of "Man who saw abyss of death"

The book "Man who saw abyss of death - 500 days of Masao Yoshida and the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant" [trans.] by Ryusho Kadota, a nonfiction novelist, is receiving a great response in Japan. Actions of TEPCO employee on the day of the Fukushima accident that has not appeared on the surface in media coverage until now are recorded in great detail focusing on then manager, Yoshida.

This is the summary of the lecture. Why did the author write this book, and what did he feel from people of TEPCO? He was moved and impressed with the fortitude of Japanese. We are touched by his real intention.

3) “Risk Communication and mechanism of anxiety increase” (in Japanese), by Noboru Nishiyama an article from IEEI. He overlaps the increase in anxiety at Fukushima accident with the failure in communication over L’Aquila Earthquake in Italy. Especially in Japan, due to its cultural characteristics, trust in the persons concerned is necessary in communication, however, he considers its collapse as one of the cause of the confusion.

This Week’s Links

1)“Un gendarme du nucleaire bien peu independant ” (in French, Japanese), Le Monde deplomatique. Comments on IAEA. Taking a general view on its activity, however, slightly critical. Le Monde is known to have left-ish view. It mentions relation with Japan. In it appears Eisaku Sato, former Fukushima Prefectural Governor, and criticizes activities of IAEA as “it is like a pyromaniac taking charge of fire prevention”.

2)“Abe Administration should establish International Organization for nuke puke management – 3 ways to solve safety for 100,000 years” (Japanese), and article of Nikkei Business line, February 18. It is an interview with Hiroshi Tasaka, President of a think tank Sophia Bank, and former researcher of atomic energy engineering. Whatever view one takes, we cannot avoid the problem of the radioactive waste of the nuclear power generation. As well as an existing policy of domestic geological disposal, he insists on the examination of a variety of management methods.

3)“Living with Radioactivity – 1: Justice is troublesome” (Japanese), serial of five in the magazine Shincho 45, by Sokyu Genyu, a Buddhist priest of the Rinzai sect, living in Fukushima, and a novelist is released on web. He writes about issue surrounding Fukushima and radioactivity, such as misunderstanding, imposition of the good will, lack of explanation to persons concerned, and so on. He also questions endless decontamination based on “1mSv per year” standard.


Is Fukushima Dangerous? -- Distorted images of Japan - Morley Robertson × Nobuo Ikeda

What's happen? What was the cause in Fukushima? Morley Robertson, writer and DJ, talk about distorted images of Japan after Fukushima nuclear plant accident with Nobuo Ikeda.

21st Century Energy Challenges

At the ARPA-E 2012 summit, Bill Gates and U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu discussed the largest energy challenges of the 21st century in the U.S. and around the world.

A Web-TV Program "Is radiation really so harmful? Considering risks of nuclear power generation" (Japanese only)

Agora Institute, who operates GEPR, broadcasted a Web-TV program "Is radiation really so harmful? Considering risks of nuclear power generation" on internet video streaming channel "Niconico Live " on January 19th (in Japanese only) . Nobuo Ikeda, President of Agora Incorporated, and three experts on radiation, risk analysis, and energy policy discussed about the situations after Fukushima nuclear accident. Their opinions were consistent that potentiality of health damage caused by the Fukushima accident is very small. GEPR will provide a summary about this program soon.


Agora Inc., who operates GEPR, releases a podcast program which was originally aired on Jan. 19th, 2012on internet video streaming channel "Nico-nico Live"; "Is radiation really so harmful? Considering risks of nuclear power generation" (Japanese only) The panel: Nobuo Ikeda, Akihiro Sawa, Jun Takada, and Hiroyuki Matsuda