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Excerpt: "Fukushima Daiichi plants are 'not under control at all ... and the situation with nuclear reactors in Japan is like vehicles being driven without a license,' Mr. Murata told a news conference at the foreign correspondents' club of Japan on June 5."

Japan's Environment and Nuclear Minister Goshi Hosono, second from left, inspects a pool containing spent fuel rods inside the No. 4 reactor building at Tokyo Electric Power Co.'s tsunami-crippled Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant in Okuma, Fukushima Prefecture, Japan, Saturday, May 26, 2012. (photo: Toshiaki Shimizu)
Japan's Environment and Nuclear Minister Goshi Hosono, second from left, inspects a pool containing spent fuel rods inside the No. 4 reactor building at Tokyo Electric Power Co.'s tsunami-crippled Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant in Okuma, Fukushima Prefecture, Japan, Saturday, May 26, 2012. (photo: Toshiaki Shimizu)



Mitsuhei Murata: Fukushima Plant "Not Under Control at All"

By PanOrient News

08 June 12

 

he Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Plant Number 4 reactor presents a security problem for the entire world, Mitsuhei Murata, Japan's former ambassador to Switzerland said.

Fukushima Daiichi plants are "not under control at all... and the situation with nuclear reactors in Japan is like vehicles being driven without a license," Mr. Murata told a news conference at the foreign correspondents' club of Japan on June 5.

Four nuclear plants in Fukushima Daiichi were damaged by last year’s great earthquake and tsunami. Recently, people have expressed concerns about Unit 4’s spent fuel pool which stores more than 1500 rods. The unit would be too fragile to withstand an M7-class earthquake.

The Japanese government also thinks that the Unit 4 problem is critical, and are planning to move many of the rods from the pool in 2013.

324 Civic organizations from all over the world have submitted a petition called "An Urgent Request for UN Intervention to Stabilize the Fukushima Unit 4 Spent Nuclear Fuel", Mr. Murata said noting that those organizations are also demanding a moratorium on Japan's nuclear reactors. "This reflects a loss of confidence in the government and Tokyo Electric Power Company, TEPCO,” he said.

Expressing strong anxiety regarding Japan's nuclear policy, Murata revealed he had advised PM Yoshihiko Noda that the only way to restore honor for Japan and himself as prime minister is to establish a national policy by August of non-dependence on nuclear energy.

Warning of the acute danger of Unit 4. at Fukushima Daiichi, Murata said that recent revised estimates by the Japanese government found that the probability of a 7.0 magnitude earthquake in Fukushima within the next three years is 90%. "But Unit 4 reactor, which was substantially damaged by the tsunami and subsequent explosion will not survive a 7.0 magnitude earthquake," he said.

He pointed out "the nuclear village and nuclear dictatorship is exposed, and public opinion and their movements are strong.”Nuclear village is a term for the Japanese distorted social structure in which the pronuclear politicians, scholars and companies have more power than those who are skeptical of nuclear energy. Anti-nuclear protests have been ignored for more than 40 years.

He concluded that "the lessons of Fukushima have reminded the whole world of the great principle for humanity. The possibility for unbearable consequences must be zero" and stressed the need for “the shift from priority of economy to priority toward life. The true cause for the present crisis is lack of ethics."

Mr. Murata was Japan’s ambassador to Switzerland form 1996 to 1999.

 

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+9 # CoyoteMan50 2012-06-08 08:18
Once the nuclear genie is out of the bottles there is no defense.
Good luck to us all!
 
 
+8 # jwb110 2012-06-08 09:49
How about a Nuclear War Crimes Tribunal to set a fire under these guys? They are playing with world security not just their "business model".
 
 
+6 # mdhome 2012-06-08 10:45
They are going to remove the fuel rods in 2013? WTF! Why are they not moving them to hell out of there and into a safe place, NOW? LAST MONTH? LAST YEAR?
 
 
-2 # ericlipps 2012-06-09 11:54
Quoting mdhome:
They are going to remove the fuel rods in 2013? WTF! Why are they not moving them to hell out of there and into a safe place, NOW? LAST MONTH? LAST YEAR?


Um . . . where to? Especially since environmentalis ts essentially rule out any possible location for a spent-fuel repository, on or off this planet?

That's the dirty secret of this debate. We already have a problem, aand if it can't be solved we're down the crapper. But if it can be, a major argumet for banning nucleat power NOW NOW NOW evaporates, so too many greens don't WANT it solved.
 
 
+6 # 8myveggies 2012-06-08 11:40
All of the nuclear fuel used at Fukushima Daiichi since 1970 is still there. Approx 700 spent fuel assemblies were generated every year.

Understand that what the spent fuel stats are actually counting are not individual fuel rods but fuel rod assemblies. An assembly holds 63 rods.

Also keep in mind that the common storage pool contains 6,300 assemblies and that the pool is right next to reactor #4.

Lately whenever someone tells me that they're pregnant or planning on conceiving, I don't know what to say.
 
 
+5 # universlman 2012-06-08 11:42
Before any of the major accidents, the nuclear industry bragged about the inherent safety of nuclear power. Since the mess at Fukushima, the braggarts have fallen silent.

Underestimating risks can be expensive. Denial of risks can be fatal. The lessons of Fukushima are ongoing as those on the right continue to deny the value of almost all environmental review as unnecessary and job-killing. We have created a class of deniers who attack the idea of even planning for the worst. This applies to the risks of nuclear power development, deep water oil well drilling, coal-fired power development and global warming. It is as if environmental risks do not exist. Is this a non-issue? Ask the people of Fukushima.
 
 
+2 # JSRaleigh 2012-06-08 14:33
"The Japanese government also thinks that the Unit 4 problem is critical,"

... so they're "planning to move many of the rods from the pool" a year from now?
 
 
+5 # Anarchist 23 2012-06-08 20:30
You should all watch a movie called 'Kirosawa's Dreams' made in '92 by Spielberg, based on famous Japanese director Kirosawa's dreams. They were quite prophetic! In fact they foretold the Fukushima plant disaster! I am very sorry for the young children of this planet.
 
 
+5 # othermother 2012-06-09 08:39
Bless Mr Murata for speaking out. Is it time to organize a boycott of Japanese food products to tell the Japanese government that the rest of the world does not trust the safety of anything made in Japan that can be worn or ingested since the meltdown?
 
 
+2 # dovelane1 2012-06-10 05:24
A friend of mine received an e-mail from a friend of hers in New York. Apparently, early this week it was reported that Indian Point, 50 miles north of NYC, had a 'MINOR leak.! Her friend said his geiger counter, which he kept in his car, always showed the back
ground radiation to be .08 to .15 micro sieverts, this week started rising!
Tuesday morning it went up to 3. 29, then continued to creep up all day ....
Wednesday, up to 6.xxx, Wednesday, 9.xxx, Thursday morning, so far 12.38!
He was told that these are negligable numbers, with a dental x-raybeing, like, a .10,

The point is, they are going up steadily. Indian Point is considered to be the #1 most dangerous nuclear facility of any type in the world, and it's the same design as Fukushima and sitting on a fault line ... built 40 years ago with an intended lifespan of 20 years .... ten year extensions were granted twice and a third one is on the table for consideration right now.

Alexander Solzhenitzen in the Minneapolis Tribune said: "There is one psychological peculiarity in thehuman being that always strikes one: to shun even the slightest signs of trouble on the outer edge of their existence at times of well-being... to try not to know about the suffering of others,and their own or others future suffering, to yield in many situations, even important spiritual and central ones - as long as it prolongs one's (illusion of) well-being." This is denial.
 

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