BBC: “One of the most contaminated places on Earth” — Silence is deafening 10 miles from Fukushima plant — Nuclear power’s lie has been so tragically exposed

Published: December 14th, 2012 at 2:13 am ET


Title: Why Japan’s ‘Fukushima 50’ remain unknown
Source: BBC News
Author: Rupert Wingfield-Hayes
Date: 13 December 2012

Entering the exclusion zone around the crippled Fukushima nuclear power plant is an unnerving experience.

It is, strictly speaking, also illegal. It is an old cliché to say that radiation is invisible. But without a Geiger counter, it would be easy to forget that this is now one of the most contaminated places on Earth.

The small village of Tatsuno lies in a valley 15km (9.3 miles) from the plant. In the sunlight, the trees on the hillsides are a riot of yellow and gold. But then I realise the fields were once neat rice paddies. Now the grass and weeds tower over me.

On the village main street, the silence is deafening – not a person, car, bike or dog. At one house, washing still flaps in the breeze. And all around me, invisible, in the soil, on the trees, the radiation lingers. […]

Back in the 1960s and 70s, getting rural Japanese communities to accept nuclear power plants was hard.

[…] they were promised that nuclear power was completely safe.

Now that the lie has been so tragically exposed, the feeling of betrayal is huge. […]

See also: [intlink id=”fukushima-fallout-figures-released-3000000-bqm2-in-major-city-radioactive-contamination-did-not-come-from-much-talked-about-iodine-131-or-cesium-137″ type=”post”]{{empty}}[/intlink]

Published: December 14th, 2012 at 2:13 am ET


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56 comments to BBC: “One of the most contaminated places on Earth” — Silence is deafening 10 miles from Fukushima plant — Nuclear power’s lie has been so tragically exposed

  • Nuke is not safe on our HOME PLANET

    Here is why to shut them down, indeed a Manifesto

  • eatliesndie eatliesndie

    "Nuclear power’s lie has been so tragically exposed" – Hasn't it what. Bunch of f'ing criminals!

  • HoTaters HoTaters

    Yes, the nuke monsters have been exposed, and still the media blows hot air out both sides of its mouth. It's like a two-faced Janus is looking in the mirror with first one side of his face showing, then the other. "I love myself! No! I hate myself!" And so on ad nauseum.

    "Nuclear power's lie … tragically exposed," juxtaposed against statements like, "ONE OF the worst nuclear accidents," (c'mon who are ya kiddin, budster?) points out the absurdity of this article. It's a "limited hangout" as Majia would say.

    I love the follow up articles with titles like this: "What went wrong?" (Answer: corporate greed forces engineers and physicists to throw away any shred of decency and ethics, in favor of serving the corporate masters. End result: pile of S— Mark 1 GE beach bomb machines. Japan does business as usual, earthquake and tsunami happen, things go, "Boom!"

    Here's another one: "Nuclear industry scuppered?" Argh, matie, we be wishin' it were so, we were. But not without them's fightin' all us wee'uns to the death over it, nah.

    Oh, and you've got to LOVE statements like "reactor cores stabilized." Right, spewing death and filth 24/7, 365. Recent estimates of ongoing nuclear contamination leaving Fuku-Dai are 30 Trillion BQ PER HOUR. That's from the article at Veterans Today. YEAH, CHECK THAT COUNT


    • HoTaters HoTaters

      I'm just flat out DISGUSTED. Won't even go into my own health issues since 3/11. It suffices to say IMHO it will be a miracle if I'm still living in another five years …. But God (and IMHO there is one) is still in charge, so I can still sleep at night. And look forward to there being a tomorrow, whether that be here or in some nether-world. OK, no further mention of the G _ _ word, don't want to get myself in trouble here. It just helps to keep the eternal perspective in mind. I think I have PTSD from this, too. My lungs have never felt the same since 3/18/11.

      • truthseek truthseek

        HoTaters, I mirror everything you have said. Principally my lungs (well many people's) are NOT THE SAME since this epic event. My heart rhythms in recent EKGs were "variable" from the doctors perspectives. This is only recent (past 2 years) and not anything like the past 15 years. My cardiologist cleared me for upcoming surgery. But I am paying even greater attention.

        *note: I do take and recommend Bromelain (pineapple based enzyme) to balance the respiratory tract. Anti-bacterial / viral. Helps to clear the chest of mucus.

    • HoTaters HoTaters

      The second link (which got lost): Efforts to contain Fukushima! NONE! It's largely a dog and pony show, AKA "preserving corporate viability."

    • HoTaters HoTaters

      Spewing filth and death 24/7, 365. Stabilized in their state of complete instability. Or maybe if you call a molten blob of nuclear lava moving underground at slightly less than a snail's pace "stable," then the cores are stable. Never mind the phreatic explosions and the forever-poisoned water table and Pacific ocean.

      Argh, but we humans be but a fly speck in the eye of geologic time.

    • bwoodfield bwoodfield

      GE beach bombs… I'll remember that one for awhile

      • HoTaters HoTaters

        Hi bwoodfield, I'm not responsible for that one. I borrowed it from someone else here who is a long-time Enenewser, like PU239, or ???? Some other witty person coined that name. We've bandied it about quite a bit here since it's such a fitting name for the Mark 1 reactors.

  • or-well

    "I believe in my Industry.
    I've University training.
    I say 'There's precipitation" instead of 'It's raining.'
    The Nuke Industry needs my participation
    to grow the economy and power the nation.
    I'm a skilled Believer caught in a trap,
    between the Execs and their machinations
    and low level workers who don't know crap.
    I've got wife, kids, old parents and a mortgage.
    Am I supposed to put them in storage?
    Now the neighbors say what I do is Whore-age.
    Well, Fuku them! They can all go wild forage
    and suck on a ventstack! I've got the knowledge
    and a career! A few more promotions, I'll get out of here,
    then consult somewhere, or teach at a College.
    I've got too much binding me to "go expat",
    too old for carrer-change, too late to change hats
    and if I speak out, I'll be blackballed for that.
    So here I stay, with my family sent South.
    I've got leave built up so at end of the month
    I'll go for a week and take them all to the beach –
    one unpounded and scoured by the tsunami
    and just try and forget and be happy with family."


      or-well, you are the bard of our time. Doubtless, some think you're having a wonderful time penning these words. Truth was never easy to live by, in an age of endless lies. Stay strong…

    • or-well

      The 'Fuku Remainers' –
      Tepco loyal retainers?
      The Walking Dead eat-your-brainers?
      Testosterised no-pain/no-gainers?
      More nuclear victims, flushed-down-the-drainers?
      Perps walking free, or soon-to-be-painers?
      There's plenty of losers, very few winners,
      their gains an illusion, mere face-saving spinners.
      Some gloried as saints, some painted as sinners.
      Shut all nukes down, before Nuke eats Lifes' dinner.

    • HoTaters HoTaters

      Or-well, sounds like you read D.H. Lawrence's book, Women in Love, where Gerald the industrialist is pondering whether or not he should continue to "prositute …" himself … "to the bitch goddess of success."

      Well said.

      • or-well

        HoTaters, just trying to walk in the shoes of a Fuku skilled Believer, and point out the lack of actual societal support systems for prospective insider whistleblowers, as well as the trap they find themselves in.
        Add to that cultural considerations and Nuclear Village-embedded participants in Media, Academe, Medicine and Education allowed to speak as "leaders" and spokespeople and it's no wonder so few nuke workers come forward.
        We can't expect change from the inside out.

  • rambojim

    Most of our species don't fear what they can't see…..

  • aigeezer aigeezer

    The "limited hangout" aspect really hit me as I read the BBC story. For example:

    1. "For help, I turn to psychiatrist Dr Jun Shigemura at Japan's national defense university." (Regular readers know that institution's history on the topic of Fukushima).

    2. The photo shows an immaculate, shiny nuke plant in its glory days.

    3. The text floats the old "Fukushima 50 as heroes" meme – great diversion – let's all debate that while the radiation spreads.

    4. The text pounds away with a subliminal message: the beautiful fall foliage (nothing really wrong, trees are still alive), the farmer and his cows (nothing really wrong, they are still alive), and the young worker who has been there since the beginning (nothing really wrong, the workers are still alive).

    5. The story invites us to buy in to the official boundary of the "exclusion zone", eliciting a "tough for them, but at least it isn't really very big" mindset.

    Blah, blah. The BBC (and all media) might be inching towards the truth but they've got a very long way to go.

    • aigeezer aigeezer

      Thinking some more about the "58-year-old Masami Yoshizawa", the farmer with 400 cows living in the exclusion zone….

      We hear his story often in media reports. In some reports we were told people donate food and supplies to him since local sources are unusable.

      A cow weighs about 1000 pounds (lots of individual variation). It eats about 2% of its body weight daily. Yoshizuwa-san's 400 cows should need about four tons of food daily.

      Where does the cattle feed come from? What form does it take (local sources are contaminated)? Who pays for it, how and why?$department/deptdocs.nsf/all/faq7811

    • Maggie123

      Aigeezer: "…inching towards the truth but they've got a very long way to go." Well-described and excruciating to notice!

    • HoTaters HoTaters

      aigeezer, yes, I noticed the nice, shiny, gleaming, bright model of the nuke plant on the splash page of the article. IMHO it's a form of subtle indoctrination and brainwashing. Doublespeak, doublethink.

      • HoTaters HoTaters

        Yes, and you've got to love how they publish all of this like it's new news. More likely the bureau chief made the lads go scouring about for material to write an article on the "current" situation at Fukushima, and with nuclear power in Japan. Re-hashed old news. Dredged up and spewed out like gunk to gum up the gears of one's thinking mechanism ….

  • or-well

    Shigemura – "They experienced…and PERHAPS radiation exposure."
    Emphasis mine. Perhaps?
    I do hope the workers suffering depression and PTSD are not among those still there working there, for many reasons.

  • Sol Man

    Nothing is more revolting than the betrayal that some people have inflicted upon somewhat trusting and fully innocent others. Certain people have set their worship of corporations and the mammon that they spin off as the highest and best thing to be in their lives. Well, sorry that mammon is blood money that you have worked for.
    Instead of valuing self, family, friends, the earth and what one could create with their own hands, time and effort went to furthering corporate mandates. Our children, the future, it is painful to realize that many of them are sent to school in benzene clouds from frack operations close by, or their homes are in those areas because there is no containment; like at Fukushima.
    I, we, need something that we have not found here, so far, and that is peace of mind in our lives and peace to prevail over all.
    Perhaps it is to be found after we depart this now jaded earth with the many corporation favoring governments serving only conflicts up to the People.

    • Maggie123

      Sol Man: "I, we, need something that we have not found here, so far, and that is peace of mind in our lives and peace to prevail over all." Well said. Much in your post resonates with my thoughts.

      I especially like: "I, we, need something that we have not found here, so far, …", and would attach 'vitality' to 'peace' as distant goal. (Or vibrancy? or vibrant life?)

      Take care…

      • Sol Man

        Thank you. I have been having a difficult time with the news out of CT today. But, I would say yes, I agree; if only we were not burdened collectively with this massive yoke…
        A vibrant life is possible! What is it that we FEEL that truly makes us happy? No, it is not the numbers in the accounts and the checks from donors, but what did we do to make our spinning orb a better place while we had some time here. Keep family close and healthy as possible; teach sons and daughters some wisdom as the days wind on. Giving our progeny a safe and sustainable future should give us some of that peace of mind. If not, we will pass on to be haunted forever, I think.

        • MaidenHeaven MaidenHeaven

          I too believe that we must work at making this world a better place.

          “I expect to pass through the world but once. Any good therefore that I can do, or any kindness I can show to any creature, let me do it now. Let me not defer it, for I shall not pass this way again.”
          —Stephen Grellet

  • AGreenRoad AGreenRoad

    Nuclear Accidents, Recycling Nuclear Weapons/Fuel

    Lists of nuclear disasters and radioactive incidents; via A Green Road

  • The spread of radiation contamination knows no boundaries.

    The insidious nature of radiation transport vectors is horrific and unstoppable.

    Considering the fact that the Fukushima Nuclear Facility persists in spewing uncontrolled massive amounts of contamination into the atmosphere and sea with an extreme likelihood of even more severe radioactive releases, (continuous fallout), in the months and years to come, I would say it's past time to evacuate further without haste and bring the perpetrators of these Death Machines to some sort of justice.

    "…they knew something was wrong, but we didn't. Not until it was too late."

    "…something was wrong, something was missing, some old memorable sounds."
    – Andrei, a farmer from Belarus

    "The original 30-kilometre contaminated exclusion zone has now been expanded to 70 kilometers. This expanded zone is called ‘Death Valley’ by the locals."
    – from article

    Chernobyl Bee-keeper

  • WindorSolarPlease

    Silence is deafening here also, with what those people are going through, and what has been coming in with the jet stream.

  • TheBigPicture TheBigPicture

    Fukushima's Daiichi plant is contaminating the Northern Hemisphere.

    • HoTaters HoTaters

      Very little bird song in Northern California where I live, since 3/11/11. Yes, once the noise of traffic isn't heard, the silence is deafening here, too, even in the city where I live. Not much animal life around these days. Even most of the rats and mice seem to be gone. Not many snails, slugs, but lots and lots of mushrooms, everywhere I go (I walk about three miles per day here, locally). Went to Cherry Lagoon today (near Vacaville) and there seem to be about 1/10 as many migrating birds as two years ago. Maybe it's too early in the migration season to know for sure, but I'm getting the impression wildlife has been severely impacted on the U.S. West Coast. Have seen an awful lot of dead birds, too, everywhere, over time.

  • Nuclear-NotCleanNotGreen

    It's up to people who know how dangerous nuclear energy is to educate people who don't know.

    ** Tell everyone. So what if they look at you funny. You're planting the seed.

    ** Tell everyone about ENENews

    ** Comment on articles. If you comment at ENENews, comment on other articles, too.

    I only see a handfull of people commenting on other articles. Join them.

    ** Comment on other Forums. If you belong to a football Forum, for example, bring up the subject of nuclear energy.

    ** Write editors, journalists, etc. Don't be lazy.

    ** Send ENENews articles in as "hot tips" to on-line news sites.

    ** E-mail these articles to family and friends. They can't ignore them forever 🙂

    ** Don't give up.

  • Beyond Zero Point

    I dont know if you all saw this but the corrupt Japanese running true to course again..
    Japan is in Uzbekistan looking for uranium. Just a few months ago, Japan Oil, Gas, and Metals National Corporation – the government agency responsible for creating stable supplies of key resources – closed a deal to help fund the exploration and production of large uranium deposits in central Uzbekistan.

  • timemachine2020 timemachine2020

    Look at this IAEA tour bus drive by at fukushima unit 4 up close and personal

    • HoTaters HoTaters

      Ah, my dream vacation, a trip to Japan and a tour of Fukushima Daichi! Oh, better still, I dream of a job as a tour docent there. Sigh …. Darwin Award candidates, yes. If they're not scientists or academics, why on earth would they go there? Maybe they're real estate investors hired by Tepco's banking kairetsu partner to scope out the territory and plan that luxury hotel and spa. Complete with hot pools supplied by recycled water from the SFP's. Gotta make those assets keep churning out profits, now, don't we?

  • Beyond Zero Point

    looks like a bus load of candidates for a Darwin award

  • arclight arclight

    Before the meltdowns, Seiko Takahashi never thought of activism. Now the middle-aged mother from Fukushima City is a passionate anti-nuclear campaigner.

    And she admits there is little sympathy for the Fukushima workers.

    fhom the article

    little sympathy??

    ive been reading here on enenews over the last nearly 2 years that we generaly seem to support these workers because they are doing the most important work at risk to more than their psychology, though that is an important part of the situation the 3 melted down coriums and millions of tons of strontium soaked waste water etc may bbe having an impact on the workers long term effect too

    so the japanese press generally supports the great work of these engineers and temporary workers.. even the japanese press has been covering the plight of the health of the missing workers and the need for them to have checkups etc
    this aspect has also been covered here on enenews by some caring and informed bloggers.. most of the anti nuke/tepco websites like exskf and fukushima diary are generally supportive of these brave souls..

    its funny that the bbc qoute someone who says these brave workers do not have sympathy and support from japanese citizens, even the anti nukers

    looks like this is an audous huxley PR catch up piece to make there

    the "How plant was stabilised" nk on "more on this story" says it all

    stabalised ?? really!!

    tim e for a couple of posts here..

    • arclight arclight

      anyway it turns out that the bbc trust is annoyed about the disinfo and the bbc is trying to tell the truth whilst leaving copy for the anti nuke yahoo schill group ie "the health physisit that hassles busby, caldicott and likely enenews admin too

      heres a link to why we have the above watered down and heavily slanted (thanks aigeezer well said)

      BBC1 science show ‘downplayed impact’ of Chernobyl nuclear disaster
      “The BBC Trust’s editorial standards committee (ESC) received a complaint on behalf of more than 50 co-signatories that the show was “extremely selective” in the figures it quoted about the impact of radiation released following the Chernobyl disaster and minimised the “more significant and contentious issue” of the secondary effects of health problems such as thyroid cancer.”

      Bang Goes the Theory was ‘extremely selective’ in figures used about deaths resulting from Ukraine accident, trust rules

      Mark Sweney, Tuesday 11 December 2012 15.45 GMT

      looks like Chime PR is on the case here with the bbc`s band of merry nuker lawyers.. imo