Farcical decontamination efforts

Fujisawa, Kanagawa

Alex Trouchet’s March 1 letter “Send debris to forbidden zone,” makes an excellent point. Of course, they should! For anyone reading this, the radioactive contamination of eastern Fukushima is essentially forever.

The menage a trois of Tokyo Electric Power Co., the government and regulators refuses to create this huge waste repository because its existence would perfectly illustrate the inherent dangers of nuclear power. Hence the farcical “decontamination”.

Splash contaminated buildings with water. Bury radioactive soil in places like schoolyards and promptly reopen the schools. Ship radioactive debris all over Japan and incinerate it in places heretofore uncontaminated. No independent scientist or researcher recommends these methods. However, if the health risks are spread all over Japan, nobody can ever prove Tepco or the government is responsible for an illness.

Local mayors resisting plans to store radioactive debris in Fukushima think only of tax revenues from returning residents. Many uncontaminated rural areas in Japan are now underpopulated. Farmers who insist on planting radioactive fields selfishly put consumers at risk by their stubborn refusal to relocate. Considering that most of these farmers will be gone in 30 years, this selfishness violates the alleged Japanese group ethic.

Radiation is not like cholesterol or blood pressure. There is no safe range. The government’s repeated manipulation of “acceptable” radiation levels makes them look like liars. The alleged “decontamination” is as fraudulent as the declaration of “cold shutdown” for the melted-down reactors, a claim rejected by independent scientists and nuclear engineers.

The only positive outcome of this tragic, world-altering disaster is the belated realization among many more Japanese that their leaders lie and that many journalists, worried about their own safety, are now less likely to automatically parrot the official lies.

The opinions expressed in this letter to the editor are the writer’s own and do not necessarily reflect the policies of The Japan Times.

donald feeney