PHONE: (415) 671-0789
FAX: (415) 671-0316
EMAIL: editor@sfbayview.com
Thursday, August 23, 2007
National Black Newspaper
HomeFront PageThis weekWanda's PicksWeb ExclusivesCommentaryContact UsAbout UsArchives
Radioactive Ocean Day: Japan earthquake hits world’s largest nuke plant Print E-mail
by Leuren Moret   
Wednesday, 18 July 2007
“With a magnitude 8 or greater earthquake in Japan every 5 years, Japan is playing a deadly game of nuclear roulette.” – Leuren Moret, Japan Times, May 23, 2004

A magnitude 6.8 earthquake hit the east coast of Japan at 10:13 a.m. on Monday, July 16, damaging the largest nuclear power plant in Japan – and the world. At least 10 people died in the earthquake in Niigata Prefecture in central Japan.

Tarnished by years of cover-ups of accidents and falsified safety records, Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO) first reported that the Kashiwazaki Kariwa plant was “not seriously damaged” but eventually admitted multiple radioactive leaks had occurred. TEPCO reluctantly reported a day later that over 50 cases of malfunctioning at the plant had been discovered as earthquake damage was assessed.

More complete details were reported in multiple news stories pouring into the media from all over the world – burst pipes, water leaks, radioactive waste spillage, fires, spilled waste drums and a damaged radioactive exhaust stack. More candid than TEPCO, the news stories at first revealed that 100 drums of radioactive contaminated waste had fallen over, spilling liquids onto the ground when the lids came off. TEPCO corrected itself two days later to 400 drums.

Fires in one of the reactors burned for three hours because water pressure was so low there was not enough water available for firemen to put the fires out in what should have taken less than an hour. The transformer building completely burned, but that was barely mentioned.

A damaged exhaust stack was underreported to have released Cobalt 60 and Chromium 51 into the atmosphere. Unfortunately these are just two of more than 300 radioactive isotopes released daily from nuclear power plants into the atmosphere, poisoning nearby communities within 100 miles and contaminating dairies, food crops and water supplies nearby.

TEPCO at first revealed that 1.5 liters of liquid radioactive waste spilled, but it later was reported that 1,200 liters had escaped from a reactor building. Two days after the quake, TEPCO admitted they had reported only 50 percent of the radiation released in the liquid, which was washed into the ocean … making it Radioactive Ocean Day!

The increasing cascade of news stories from all over the world and statements by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) chief Wednesday, indicates a growing global concern about the longer term implications of this very serious nuclear power plant accident in Japan. The “safety concern” of IAEA Director Mohamed ElBaradei is a thinly veiled fear about the global impact it will have on the proposed efforts to proliferate nuclear power around the world. The collision of nuclear power with earthquakes could not have happened in a better country than the tectonic setting of Japan.

Two days after the quake disaster, Akira Fukushima, the deputy director general of Japan’s Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency, said no irregularities had been found in critical areas of the plant but added: “It is possible that the epicenter fault line does run beneath the power plant. Our decision on what to do in the future will depend on the report we got from TEPCO.”

Of course, TEPCO knew that four faults were there when they built the plant but conveniently labeled them “inactive.” Sitting in the most unstable tectonic setting in the world, perched on the junction of four tectonic plates, Japan is being subducted under the China plate. How could any fault in Japan possibly be called “inactive”?

No wonder the Kashiwazaki Kariwa plant was damaged by the 6.8 earthquake. It was built in the 1970s under lax safety standards that only required Japanese nuke plants to withstand a 6.5 earthquake. Three years ago, an earthquake there killed 67 people, and in 2001 radiation leaked in a turbine room of one of the reactors.

In 2005 a lawsuit was filed by 33 residents concerned with a bad track record on safety issues at the plant and the danger of nearby faults, but it was thrown out by the judge. The same things are happening in the nuclear power fight by Japanese citizens that American citizens have fought for decades, against a government agenda they do not support.

The reason is that 85 percent of commercial nuclear power plants around the world are built on GE or Westinghouse designs. The Japanese decision makers are bribed and coached by the American sellers and economic hit men of this obsolete and dangerous technology.

The largest nuke plant in the world, Kashiwazaki Kariwa produces 8.2 million kW/year. Japan relies for 30 percent of its electricity on 55 operating nuclear power plants and plans to increase nuclear power generated electricity to 40 percent.

Yet Japanese anti-nuclear activists have demonstrated that if all the nuclear power plants in Japan were turned off, there would be no shortage of electricity. That actually happened several years ago when Kei Sugaoka, an American GE nuclear power plant inspector, blew the whistle on TEPCO and shut down a large part of the nuclear power industry in Japan, the equivalent of eight Diablo Canyon, California, nukes.

Ten years ago farmers in the tiny village (2,000 population) of Kuzumaki in Iwate Prefecture got off the grid and started producing their own energy from biomass, solar and wind power. Now they are selling 60 percent of what they produce in violation of Japanese laws that prohibit any private electricity production by citizens.

The fiscal reality of nuclear power is that when the economics are penciled out, the only way it can survive is on government subsidies – our taxpayer dollars – because it is the most expensive energy source of all. And the full cycle cost in terms of greenhouse gases released from uranium mining, enrichment, construction and operation of plants, and trucking around nuclear waste, makes it the worst greenhouse gas polluter of all existing energy sources.

It is no answer to global warning despite what Al Gore is selling. It is another hoax of the New World Order agenda.

So who is nuclear power popular with? The Queen of England owns the mineral rights to Australia, Canada and some African countries, making her the Uranium Queen of the world and Planet Earth the Queen’s Death Star. These are the three regions in the world where the largest uranium deposits are located – until recently, when it was revealed on mining industry websites that Kazakhstan and Afghanistan will out-produce all other countries. Is that what 911 was really about?

The Rockefellers also own vast uranium deposits, as well as GE and Westinghouse through holding companies. The Rothschilds and London Money Power control uranium supplies and prices globally and own the nuclear power industry through holding companies. The Rothschilds also serve as the Queen’s business manager, and the two families intermarry. The mother of Princess Diana was a Rothschild. How many trillions does a family need to get by?

Nuclear power in reality is a poison pill and the kiss of death. When Rancho Seco nuclear power plant was shut down in Sacramento in 1989, within two years cancer in children and infant mortality both declined nearly 23 percent in the five counties surrounding the plant. Ninety-five percent of radioactive emissions from Rancho Seco were rained and snowed out into the Sierra Nevada mountains, which supply much of the drinking water for the Bay Area.

Within two years of shutdown, health improved and disease mortality declined 5 percent for all diseases and races except Blacks in San Francisco County. Because state milk boards ship the most radioactive milk from dairies around nuclear power plants into inner city Black communities across the nation, Black communities continue to have the highest infant mortality, cancer, asthma, diabetes and other chronic illnesses.

Dr. Ernest Sternglass, who testified for President Kennedy in 1963 and helped to convince the Senate to sign the Partial Test Ban Treaty, calls it an official government policy of “Black American genocide.” The damage to the developing brain and the future health of the unborn is the greatest impact.

Africa has the lowest diabetes rates in the world, so diabetes cannot be genetic in Black communities, because “if it’s an epidemic, it’s not genetic.” The U.S. government, however, loves to blame the victim. Victimization in the U.S. is more American than democracy.

According to Centers for Disease Control data, two thirds of all breast cancer deaths occurring between 1985 and 1989 in the United States occurred within 100 miles of nuclear power plants and nuclear weapons laboratories. It’s pretty clear when those government numbers are put on maps and graphs that nuclear technologies are incompatible with a healthy environment and good public health.

Who would know that better than the San Francisco Bayview Hunters Point community, located at one of the U.S. Navy’s most radioactive polluted sites in the world? It’s time to get a citizen Geiger counter movement going here. It’s time for us to conduct our own radiation monitoring program, instead of the government agencies and elected officials who have been poisoning us in order to protect the military and the corporations.

We can fight back with our own data tracking and data base, which proves that officials have been deliberately violating laws and poisoning our babies, our children, our elderly – the most vulnerable in our communities, and the rest of us too!

We have no other choice; silence is the sanction of the victim. We can remain silent and silently die or we can empower ourselves, organize community and hold officials’ feet to the fire. Public health and the health of the environment are the most effective and important community organizing issues.

The success and empowerment of the Hawaii Geiger counter movement is rocking the world and intimidating the Pentagon and the establishment. Let’s turn on our Geiger counters and rock the Bay Area!


“Japan’s deadly game of nuclear roulette,” www.japantimes.co.jp/cgi-bin/ getarticle.pl5?fl20040523x2.htm

Global Disaster Alert and Coordination System: Kashiwazaki Kariwa plant disaster updates, http://www.gdacs.org/reports.asp?eventType=EQ&ID=28733&system=news&location=JPN&alertlevel=Green&glide_no=&TsID=421&datetime=20070716

“Ex-Worker’s Careful Notes Triggered Nuclear Reform,” http://modelminority.com/printout696.html

“Breast cancer meeting fails people of Hunters Point,” www.sfbayview.com

KITV ABCTV “Geiger Counter” news story in Honolulu April 29-30, 2007, www.youtube.com/watch?v=L94IUSw54pQ

“AIRBORNE: The lowdown on depleted uranium in Hawai’i,” http://honoluluweekly.com/cover/2007/06/airborne/

“RADIOACTIVE US,” http://hawaiiislandjournal.com/

“Depleted Uranium, Death and Destruction: Then why is Leuren Moret smiling?” http://www.bpmnews.org/Archives/2007_July_August.pdf

Leuren Moret is president of Scientists for Indigenous People, a former City of Berkeley environmental commissioner and past president of the Association for Women Geoscientists. Email her at This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it
< Prev   Next >
Holla If You Hear Me | Behind Enemy Lines | Black Pockets
Wanda's Picks | What's Going On | Church Directory | Classifieds | Photos

© 2000 - 2007 San Francisco Bayview.