[September 8 2011]
Nearly six months after the March 11 earthquake and tsnuami in Japan, information behind the Fukushima nuclear disaster is slowly breaking through.
In a recent news release by the Japanese Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency (NISA), the amount of terabecquerels released during the first week of the incident is now said to be double what the public was originally told. From the initially stated 370 000 terabecquerels of radioactive material ejected into the air in the early days of Fukushima – 770,000 terabecquerels is the newly raised figure. ‘No immediate danger’ and information censor, so was the government’s false assurance.
Since the crippling of the three reactors on March 11, the estimated release of caesium-137 has been estimated at 15,000 tera becquerels, the Tokyo Shimbun reported, quoting a government calculation. This figure has now been compared to the US’ uranium bomb Little Boy dropped on Hiroshima in the final days of World War II – a radioactive release of 89 terabecquerels – the comparison calculating Fukushima’s radioactive caesium leak during the first week as equal to 168 Hiroshima bombs. The Japanese government has denied the comparison.
Meanwhile, investigations into the extent of radioactive contamination in the Fukushima Prefecture continues, as outlined most recently by Yamane Yusaku in the progressive Japanese newspaper AERA.
Text Sophie Pinchetti