Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Japan and the truth: Disaster analysis you may not hear elsewhere

The seemingly limited information being provided by both the government and the operating company, Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO), about the ongoing disaster at the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant is a source of widespread public concern.

However, a nonprofit organization focused on nuclear power issues and founded in Tokyo in 1975 — and which includes among its contributors former engineers at such power plants — has been clearly presenting expert analysis of the situation since its inception with the megaquake and tsunami that struck the northeast of the country on the afternoon of Friday, March 11.

The organization, named the Citizens' Nuclear Information Center (CNIC), has provided information and opinions throughout on its website, and has also been holding daily press conferences to disseminate what it comes to know.

One thing that has emerged above all else is the public's astonishment — and many experts' incredulity — that this nuclear plant and others in Japan were ever sited in the quake-prone places they were.

"Unit (Reactor) 1 of the Fukushima Daiichi (No. 1) Nuclear Power Plant is in a state of meltdown. A nuclear disaster which the promoters of nuclear power in Japan said wouldn't happen is in progress," Philip White, CNIC's international liaison officer, said on its website on Saturday, March 12. "This could and should have been predicted." (read more)