Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Group to monitor trial of former TEPCO executives to clarify truth about Fukushima disaster

The Asahi Shinbun
January 27, 2016


Lawyers, journalists and scientists will form a group to help expose the truth and spread details about the Fukushima nuclear disaster during the criminal trial of three former executives of Tokyo Electric Power Co.
“We will encourage the court to hold a fair trial while transmitting information regarding the trial across the nation,” said an official of the planned organization, whose name is translated as “support group for the criminal procedure on the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant.”

Tsunehisa Katsumata, former chairman of TEPCO, the operator of the crippled plant, and two former vice presidents, Sakae Muto and Ichiro Takekuro, face mandatory charges of professional negligence resulting in death and injury.

Although the trial is still months away, 33 people are now setting up the group, including Ruiko Muto, who heads an organization pursuing the criminal responsibility of TEPCO and government officials for the Fukushima nuclear disaster.

Tetsuji Imanaka, an assistant professor of nuclear engineering at the Kyoto University Research Reactor Institute, and Norma Field, a professor emeritus of East Asian Studies at the University of Chicago, have also joined.

Three reactors melted down at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant after the Great East Japan Earthquake and tsunami struck on March 11, 2011. A number of hospital patients died in the chaotic evacuation.
About 14,000 residents of Fukushima Prefecture filed a criminal complaint against TEPCO executives, government officials and scientists in 2012, saying they were aware of the dangers to the Fukushima nuclear plant from a tsunami, but they failed in their responsibility to take proper countermeasures.

Tokyo prosecutors twice decided not to indict the three former TEPCO executives. However, the Tokyo No. 5 Committee for the Inquest of Prosecution, a panel of citizens, decided to forcibly indict the three in July last year.

“It has been almost five years since the disaster, but many details, including their foreseeability of the tsunami, remain unclear,” said science writer Takashi Soeda, one of the group’s co-founders. “As TEPCO has not unveiled a sufficient amount of information even in inquiries conducted by the Diet and the government or in civil lawsuits, the truth must be uncovered through the legal force of a criminal trial.” Five lawyers appointed by the Tokyo District Court will act as prosecutors in the trial. Legal experts expect the lawyers will indict the former TEPCO executives and release a statement naming the victims around March 11, the fifth anniversary of the triple disaster that still haunts the Tohoku region.


NRA’s data shows contamination level in Tokyo tap water higher than Fukushima by 24 percent

Fukushima Diary
, January 27, 2016

According to NRA (Nuclear Regulation Authority), Cs-134/137 density in Tokyo tap water is 24% higher than Fukushima. The report was released on 10/30/2015, titled as “Readings of radioactivity level in drinking water by prefecture” to cover from July to September in 2015.

From this report, only 0.0015 Bq/Kg of Cs-137  was detected in Fukushima drinking water. Cs-134 was not supposed to be detected. On the other hand, 0.00036 Bq/Kg of Cs-134 and 0.0015 of Bq/Kg were detected from Tokyo drinking water. The measurement of Cs-134 is due to Fukushima accident. NRA comments each data is based on the reports from prefectures. It is not mentioned by Fukushima prefectural government why Cs-134 was not detected in their drinking water.

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Sunday, January 24, 2016

Study: 28% Increase In Thyroid Problems In Babies Born After Fukushima in Alaska, California, Hawaii, Oregon and Washington

Is Fukushima Causing Health Problems In the United States?


Infants are much more vulnerable to radiation than adults. And see this. However, radiation safety standards are set based on the assumption that everyone in the world is a healthy man in his 20s. Now, a medical doctor (Janette D. Sherman, M. D.) and epidemiologist (Joseph Mangano) have released a study showing a 28% increase in thyroid problems in babies born in Hawaii and America’s West Coast after the Fukushima nuclear accident.

Janette Sherman, M.D. worked for the Atomic Energy Commission (forerunner of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission) at the University of California in Berkeley, and for the U.S. Navy Radiation Defense Laboratory in San Francisco. She served on the EPA’s advisory board for 6 years, and has been an advisor to the National Cancer Institute on breast cancer. Dr. Sherman specializes in internal medicine and toxicology with an emphasis on chemicals and nuclear radiation.

Joseph J. Mangano is a public health administrator and researcher who has studied the connection between low-dose radiation exposure and subsequent risk of diseases such as cancer and damage to newborns. He has published numerous articles and letters in medical and other journals in addition to books, including Low Level Radiation and Immune System Disorders: An Atomic Era Legacy.

Their new study – published in the Open Journal of Pediatrics – is entitled “Elevated airborne beta levels in Pacific/West Coast US States and trends in hypothyroidism among newborns after the Fukushima nuclear meltdown.”

Common Dreams notes:

[The study found that] children born in Alaska, California, Hawaii, Oregon and Washington between one week and 16 weeks after the meltdown began are 28 percent more likely to suffer from congenital hypothyroidism (CH) than were kids born in those states during the same period one year earlier.

CH results from a build up of radioactive iodine in our thyroids and can result in stunted growth, lowered intelligence, deafness, and neurological abnormalities—though can be treated if detected early.

According to researchers from the Radiation and Public Health Project who performed the study, “Fukushima fallout appeared to affect all areas of the US, and was especially large in some, mostly in the western part of the nation.” They add that CH can provide an early measure to “assess any potential changes in US fetal and infant health status after Fukushima because official data was available relatively promptly.”

Health researcher Joe Mangano similarly cautioned, “Reports of rising numbers of West Coast infants with under-active thyroid glands after Fukushima suggest that Americans may have been harmed by Fukushima fallout. Studies, especially of the youngest, must proceed immediately.”
Earlier this year, the Fukushima Prefecture Health Management Survey found that more than 40 percent of the Japanese children studied showed evidence of thyroid abnormalities, which Wasserman says signifies a “horrifying plague.”
Sherman and Mangano published an essay in June 2011 claiming that  the 35% spike in infant mortality in Northwest cities since the Fukushima meltdown might have been caused by radiation and they published a study in December 2011 in the peer-reviewed journal International Journal of Health Services, alleging that 14,000 people had already died in the United States due to Fukushima.   A Scientific American blog post and Med Page Today slammed the study as being voodoo science. However, Scientific American does admit:

Certainly radiation from Fukushima is dangerous, and could very well lead to negative health effects—even across the Pacific.

Update: ABC 10 News and MSN’s Healthy Living have picked up on the story.