Posts Tagged Edano

METI Chief Tells Tepco To Get House In Order First

Last night, there was an NHK documentary about the March 11 earthquake and tsunami. It included footage of the tsunami sweeping into the town taken by eye-witnesses, including some who were in their cars trying to escape at the time. Horrifying, and yet some miraculous escapes. In places, such as where the stream of water was forced into narrow passageways between buildings, the tsunami reached speeds of 6 m/sec.

There was also a section on TEPCO and Fukushima, with dramatic re-enactments of Kan dealing with TEPCO’s unbelievable request to abandon the Fukushima plant, and Kan’s refusal. Assuming that this account is essentially true, it seems to argue in favour of government supervision of this entity. Yet, I’m not entirely happy with the kind of power that Edano is wielding here.

TOKYO (Nikkei)–Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry Yukio Edano on Thursday quickly dashed Tokyo Electric Power Co.’s (9501) hopes of submitting a request soon to hike household power rates.

“Power providers can decide to seek approval (for an increase), but it’s my decision whether to allow it or not,” Edano said at a news conference following a cabinet meeting.

This suggests that Tepco, as the company is known, faces a steep hurdle, especially as Edano and others seek considerable restructuring at the utility as a precondition for allowing it to raise household rates.

via 2011/12/23 05:46 – METI Chief Tells Tepco To Get House In Order First.

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Be objective, not sensationalist, foreign media told | The Japan Times Online

It’s official: foreign media sensationalized the Fukushima crisis and were even factually wrong. Shock! Horror! Shorely not!!

Shock Shock Horror Horror by Jeremy Brooks on Flickr

Shock Shock Horror Horror by Jeremy Brooks on Flickr

Interestingly, or perversely, some foreigners in Japan seemed to believe the sensationalist press rather than the restrained Japanese one, precisely because the restrained reports gave the impression of witholding information, leading to mistrust.

Tokyo has been asking foreign media to report objectively on the crisis at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant, the Foreign Ministry said Thursday, as sensationalist or factually incorrect reports are believed to have fanned fears and led to import restrictions on Japanese products.State Foreign Secretary Chiaki Takahashi told a news conference that the government believes some reports by foreign media were “excessive,” and through Japanese diplomatic missions abroad has urged the news organizations responsible to correctly and objectively disseminate information.Ministry officials said some foreign media, especially tabloids, have overemphasized the danger of radioactive materials leaking from the Fukushima plant by focusing on extreme projections

via Be objective, not sensationalist, foreign media told | The Japan Times Online.

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Rural sports complex turns into base camp for nuclear workers | The Japan Times Online

The Japan Times provides more details of the working conditions at Fukushima, and reports on Kan’s visit there.
Update:I don’t think this is the complete truth, but this article and others on the same subject seem to indicate that the government and TEPCo are aware of people’s concern and anxiety over
a) the workers on the front-lines of this crisis, and
b) the secrecy that continues to shroud exactly what is going on in the plant.
One could be cynical and say the officials are trying to avert criticism and fob people off, but I take Edano’s statement of gratitude as 100% sincere (if a little late). As was Tokyo mayor Ishihara’s expression of thanks to the Tokyo Hyperrescue fire-fighting team.

“I humbly bow to the workers and officials who are engaged in various difficult work at the frontline of the nuclear plant,” Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano said Tuesday.

via Rural sports complex turns into base camp for nuclear workers | The Japan Times Online.

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The Struggle for a New Japan | The Diplomat

Another article cautiously praising the Japanese government’s response to the recent disaster (although after quickly glancing through the contents, it looks to be little more than a re-hash of what Karel von Wolferen wrote the other day):

There are three things that stand out about the current Japanese response that distinguish it sharply from the last time the country suffered a comparable shock—the Kobe earthquake of 1995—and which underline just how much has changed since then.The first difference is the considerable lengths that the Kan government has taken to keep the Japanese people informed about the crisis and its efforts to deal with it. The Prime Minister and Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano have been offering regular press briefings as the crisis has unfolded, in sharp contrast with the hapless Maruyama government, whose initial response in 1995 was marked by indecision and apparent confusion.

via The Struggle for a New Japan | The Diplomat.

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2011/03/31 13:00 – No Immediate Plan To Expand Evacuation Zone Despite IAEA Findings: Edano

(2011/3/31 11:36 is the time stamp for the (original?) Japanese article. Nikkei English articles do not have a time stamp.)

TOKYO (Dow Jones)–Japan has no immediate plan to expand the evacuation zone around the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant despite finding higher-than-permitted levels of radiation in a village 10 kilometers away from the current zone, chief government spokesman Yukio Edano said Thursday.

The International Atomic Energy Agency said overnight that one of its teams had detected radiation from cesium-137 that is double their recommended limit in the town of Iitate, 40-kilometers northwest of the Daiichi plant.

The IAEA said the sampling was done from March 18-26 in nine municipalities.

However, a spokesman for the Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency said at a morning news conference that authorities are reviewing whether to evacuate residents from the town.

via 2011/03/31 13:00 – No Immediate Plan To Expand Evacuation Zone Despite IAEA Findings: Edano.

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Govt may spray resin on N-plant / Sticky material should keep down radiation : National : DAILY YOMIURI ONLINE (The Daily Yomiuri)

Commenter on this blog, Aldritch Parsons, suggested on March 30 some kind of tent of dome over the reactors to contain or limit the diffusion of radioactive materials. And today, I read on the Yomiuri (via the very useful

The government will likely go ahead with a plan to spray resin inside the troubled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant, which it hopes will contain the spread of radioactive substances, sources said Wednesday.

The government has begun full-fledged discussions on different plans to stop the spread of radioactive substances that have been leaking continuously from damaged reactors at the plant run by Tokyo Electric Power Co.

In addition to efforts to cool the reactors and spent nuclear fuel pools by TEPCO and the Self-Defense Forces, the government has asked for aid from private companies and other nations, including the United States, to deal with the accident.

It is believed spraying resin would minimize the spread of radioactive substances, which would allow repair work at the plant to proceed more smoothly, the sources said. Efforts to restore the reactors’ cooling functions have seesawed repeatedly, with the detection Wednesday of radioactive iodine-131 at levels 3,355 times the legal limit in seawater near the plant being the latest wrench in the works.

Spraying resin on debris inside the plant could begin as early as Thursday, the government sources said. The operation would last for about two weeks, they said.

The plan involves using a remote-controlled robot to spray resin over about 80,000 square meters inside the 120,000-square-meter facility. The areas to be sprayed were contaminated by radiation from debris scattered by several hydrogen gas explosions in the days after the March 11 earthquake.

via Govt may spray resin on N-plant / Sticky material should keep down radiation : National : DAILY YOMIURI ONLINE (The Daily Yomiuri).

And VOA’s Steve Herman, back in Seoul after 2 weeks covering the tsunami/earthquake/Fukushima disaster in Tohoku and Tokyo, tweets:

Officials: Unmanned, remote-controlled vehicle will spray the resin beginning Thursday “on a trial basis.”

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原発建屋に布、汚染水回収にタンカー案 政府が検討  :日本経済新聞

Looks like they’re going to go with the tanker plan, according to Edano’s announcement today, March 30th, a.m.:


via 原発建屋に布、汚染水回収にタンカー案 政府が検討  :日本経済新聞.

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Nearby seawater radioactive | The Japan Times Online

The Japanese government reports on the radioactivity in the sea near the Fukushima plant.

Radioactive materials that exceeded regulation levels have been found in seawater around the endangered Fukushima nuclear plant, but government officials offered reassurances Tuesday they will not have an immediate effect on peoples health.The impact on marine resources is not yet known, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano said, adding however that an embargo on seafood caught near the Fukushima plant is not currently necessary.Meanwhile, the health ministry advised residents of five towns and cities in Fukushima Prefecture to avoid using tap water to make formula milk and other drinks for babies due to abnormally high radiation levels.

via Nearby seawater radioactive | The Japan Times Online.

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