Nuclear exports mind-boggling

I just can’t understand why Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh signed a joint statement to promote talks to conclude a cooperation pact to have India acquire Japanese nuclear technology and equipment.

If, as it is said, India is struggling to meet energy demand to sustain the country’s rapid economic growth, then Japan should help India produce energy using the sun, winds and waves instead of exporting dangerous nuclear technology.

The nuclear accidents at Tokyo Electric Power Co.’s Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant haven’t even been adequately disposed of. Many people still can’t go back to their homes. Dairy farmers had to abandon their work. Contaminated water is still overflowing in the plant area. It is said the water is going underground and will flow into the ocean. This worries Fukushima’s fishermen.

Human beings have not yet mastered the means to operate nuclear reactors safely. Tepco engineers don’t know how to take care of their broken reactors adequately. Therefore, Abe and Japanese nuclear energy-related companies should refrain from exporting nuclear technology to other countries.

If I were prime minister of Japan, I would not allow the export of nuclear technology to other countries. If I were prime minister of India or Turkey, I would not import it. As the Fukushima plant showed the entire world, nuclear accidents happen.

naoshi koriyama
sagamihara, kanagawa

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.

  • forsetiboston

    It’s fairly straightforward. Sun, wind, waves, and any manner of “renewable” energies will not meet the very basic concept of “base load generation.” This was as true in the 70′s as it is today. If I hear “look at Energiewende” one more time I may be sick, Germany are building new coal capacity and still drawing on their nuclear base. This is used to conveniently cover up the simple fact that until mass storage is a reality (and another nightmare to deal with) solar, wind, wave, and whatnot cannot be relied on in industrialized nations. Even then – one has to think that much of the energy harvested by nature would be used to charge/fuel the storage source thus leaving precious little in terms of surplus energy.

    Thanks once again Japan Times for the daily anti-nuclear worship. This is becoming like a religious site, with the daily prayer. Then again anti-nuclear positions are often compared to a religion. One based on little science and a whole boat load of emotion.

    Finally as for ‘not mastering operation’ of reactors, the US, British, French, and other navies operate nuclear reactors on a daily basis. In fact, there is a vessel home ported there in Yokosuka last I checked, she has not one but three reactors. One could theorize that the real problem was the privatization of public utilities which turned them into for profit, publicly traded companies. But that would be another entire discussion.

    Industrial accidents happen all the time, in the energy industry they are sometimes dramatic. For instance, Banqiao for one, and in the US over the last few years we have had chemical plant accidents, natural gas explosions (San Bruno). Then there are auto accidents, in the US alone for 2009 (last data I could find) we lost over 30,000 people to car accidents. One year, one country, the state of California alone (where I am) lost over 3,000 people in 2009. So lets put nuclear power, and it’s political ‘fallout’ in perspective shall we? How many lives in Japan did nuclear power improve from the 70′s through the miracle 80′s into the 90′s? I wonder..

    Not asking anyone to agree, just asking people to think with their brains and not their hearts.