REALTOKYO: From Nuclear to Solar

Tagged as: anti-militarism energy geology japan nuclear photovoltaic reactor solar waste

Northern England has very different interactions between nuclear energy and geology than the Japanese archipelago does. Here, we have expert opinion being ignored by politicians looking for waste disposal sites. There, they had expert opinion being ignored in the siting of reactors. Similar propaganda methods were used in both.

In this piece, Ozaki describes his personal experience of the Japanese earthquake, and looks at some of the warnings that were ignored about regional geological hazards.

He quotes from Hirose Takashi's book "Time Bomb Reactor" (published in August 2010), not available elsewhere in English, "While I was working on this final manuscript on June 17, 2010, a power blackout just occurred at the Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) operated Rector 2 of the Fukushima I Nuclear Power Plant, leading to a major accident that almost ended in a meltdown. [...] The accident was caused by four external power transmission lines, all of which were cut off at the same time. The emergency stop systems of the generators and reactors did of course work, but as water continued to boil inside the reactors, the cooling water level sank dramatically, and a core melt could only be avoided at the very last minute. [...] The fact that something as severe as this could happen even though there was no earthquake on the day of the accident led me to think about what the scenery could look like if the plant was visited by a major quake."

Although Ozaki hasn't bottomed-out the photovoltaic ideal, he is doing significantly better than George Monbiot. His first-hand account gives a window on how the recent events are effecting the Japanese psyche, and what we could learn from their experience.

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