Skip to main content

The Prime minister at Fukushima

Prime Minister Naoto Kan visited Fukushima today:

Kan praised the workers of Tokyo Electric Power Co. and its subcontractors in the J-Village lobby and thanked them for their "hard work.""The accident at the Fukushima No. 1 plant needs to be put under control with your collective efforts," Kan said. "We have to work hard until we reach a point where we can say our country has overcome the quake and the tsunami disaster."
Kan made stops at other affected locales, too, and picked up some criticism from people who have been displaced:
"I wonder how well he could grasp the situation faced by victims," fisherman Kazuo Sato, 45, said. "There are shelters still without electricity or water. Some people haven't even been able to begin searching for bodies. I want (Kan) to turn attention to those matters."
No comment here, except that it's good and expected that people want to resume their lives and get the earthquake as far behind them as they can.
---
And Kan is starting to work on how to proceed with nuclear energy on the government level. 
Prime Minister Naoto Kan is looking into the feasibility of separating the Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency from the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, according to government sources.
And why would that help?
The agency, established as a special entity of the METI-affiliated Agency for Natural Resources and Energy, is responsible for ensuring the safety of nuclear plants. The Nuclear Safety Commission of Japan, institutionalized under the Cabinet Office, is designed to double-check the agency's steps.
In reality, though, the commission merely echoes what the agency decides, according to government officials.
The article doesn't say whether Kan wants to provide it the relative freedom from political interference that the NRC has in this country, but comments from regional governments and the opposition parties support that outcome.
Mizuho Fukushima, head of the Social Democratic Party, said in a news conference that she met with Kan and stressed to him her party's long-standing position that the agency must be severed from the ministry.
Obviously, a developing story. We'll keep an eye on this one.

Japan Prime Minister Naoto Kan

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Sneak Peek

There's an invisible force powering and propelling our way of life.
It's all around us. You can't feel it. Smell it. Or taste it.
But it's there all the same. And if you look close enough, you can see all the amazing and wondrous things it does.
It not only powers our cities and towns.
And all the high-tech things we love.
It gives us the power to invent.
To explore.
To discover.
To create advanced technologies.
This invisible force creates jobs out of thin air.
It adds billions to our economy.
It's on even when we're not.
And stays on no matter what Mother Nature throws at it.
This invisible force takes us to the outer reaches of outer space.
And to the very depths of our oceans.
It brings us together. And it makes us better.
And most importantly, it has the power to do all this in our lifetime while barely leaving a trace.
Some people might say it's kind of unbelievable.
They wonder, what is this new power that does all these extraordinary things?

A Design Team Pictures the Future of Nuclear Energy

For more than 100 years, the shape and location of human settlements has been defined in large part by energy and water. Cities grew up near natural resources like hydropower, and near water for agricultural, industrial and household use.

So what would the world look like with a new generation of small nuclear reactors that could provide abundant, clean energy for electricity, water pumping and desalination and industrial processes?

Hard to say with precision, but Third Way, the non-partisan think tank, asked the design team at the Washington, D.C. office of Gensler & Associates, an architecture and interior design firm that specializes in sustainable projects like a complex that houses the NFL’s Dallas Cowboys. The talented designers saw a blooming desert and a cozy arctic village, an old urban mill re-purposed as an energy producer, a data center that integrates solar panels on its sprawling flat roofs, a naval base and a humming transit hub.

In the converted mill, high temperat…

Seeing the Light on Nuclear Energy

If you think that there is plenty of electricity, that the air is clean enough and that nuclear power is a just one among many options for meeting human needs, then you are probably over-focused on the United States or Western Europe. Even then, you’d be wrong.

That’s the idea at the heart of a new book, “Seeing the Light: The Case for Nuclear Power in the 21st Century,” by Scott L. Montgomery, a geoscientist and energy expert, and Thomas Graham Jr., a retired ambassador and arms control expert.


Billions of people live in energy poverty, they write, and even those who don’t, those who live in places where there is always an electric outlet or a light switch handy, we need to unmake the last 200 years of energy history, and move to non-carbon sources. Energy is integral to our lives but the authors cite a World Health Organization estimate that more than 6.5 million people die each year from air pollution.  In addition, they say, the global climate is heading for ruinous instability. E…