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TOPIC: fukushima

In The News

Israel Pulls Out Of Jenin, Releasing Fukushima Waters, Hottest Day

👋 ¡Bonos díes!*

Welcome to Wednesday, where violence continues in the West Bank despite Israel pulling out of Jenin, Independence Day celebrations are marred by deadly shootings in three U.S. cities, and the world sees its hottest average temperature ever. Meanwhile, we look at how the death of a 27-year-old Polish woman in Greece has sparked a deluge of racist and sexist reactions back in Poland.

[*Asturian, Spain]

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Zaporizhzhya, Inside Job: Russia's Most Likely Nuclear Weapon Isn't A Missile

Ukraine is warning about a possible terrorist attack on the Zaporizhzhya nuclear power plant, which Moscow's military has occupied since the early days of the invasion. The U.S. Senate warns that, in that case, NATO is ready to enter the war.


The Main Intelligence Directorate of Ukraine recently reported that Russia is considering an attack on the Zaporizhzhya nuclear power plant. The plant, the largest in Europe, has been occupied by Russian troops since the very early days of the full-scale invasion.

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Russian troops have turned the plant into a heavily fortified military base: the reactor's cooling system is mined, and ammunition depots have reportedly been placed in the radioactive waste storage department. Moscow's military also runs the plant itself, and even Russian nuclear experts who were transported to Zaporizhzhya take orders from local generals.

The area around the station is mined, and missiles and ballistic missiles have been launched from nearby bases. Observers from the International Atomic Energy Agency can no longer get to the plant, and their previous visits were useless.

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How Japan Wound Up Stuck With Tons Of Fukushima's Radioactive Soil

Facing 14 million cubic meters of contaminated soil collected during the cleanup of fields and villages near the destroyed Fukushima nuclear power plant, the Japanese government promised residents it would remove the soil, but now finds itself in a deadlock, despite the tens of billions of dollars spent..

OKUMA — It is the planet's largest ever nuclear cleanup job.

As Japanese authorities continue to dismantle the four reactors destroyed during the 2011 Fukushima nuclear power plant disaster, and prepare to gradually release collected and treated water into the sea, they're also trying to clear and store the tons of contaminated soil collected during the cleanup of surrounding fields and villages.

Dozens of former fields, filled rice paddies and hundreds of hectares of forest around the now-disabled power plant have been turned into a giant radioactive landfill. In the municipalities of Okuma and Futaba, some areas are still off-limits to the public.

On a recent day, countless dump trucks came to drop off contaminated soil. An army of construction vehicles including excavators, bulldozers and rollers compress the soil in successive layers, building artificial hills 15 meters high, a sort of layered cake.

"Collection began in 2015 in the villages of the area," explains Yoshitomo Mori, a Ministry of Environment executive working on the project. "We have already recovered a total of 14 million cubic meters of contaminated soil." That's the equivalent of more than five pyramids of Giza.

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This Happened - March 11: Earthquake, Tsunami, Nuclear Meltdown In Japan

One of the deadliest earthquakes and tsunamis in Japan occurred on this day in 2011. Following the natural disaster, a nuclear accident occurred at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant.

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Diana Pieper

Why Young People Are Now Nuclear Power's Most Potent Supporters

As the youngest generations worry about the effects of climate change on their lives, some are turning to nuclear power as a "cleaner" source of energy — marking a significant shift from the previous generation of anti-nuclear environmentalists.

BERLIN — The names Chernobyl and Fukushima still have the power to stir up fear and unease in many people. But although nuclear power stations look set to be consigned to the history books in Germany, the current energy crisis has reignited the debate around them. Even some Green Party politicians are now calling for nuclear power plants to remain operational, at least temporarily.

The younger generation is interested in nuclear power, especially in its potential to be used as a bridging technology.

Although there has not been much research into this change in attitudes, the representative study “Young Europe 2022”, which surveyed people from seven European countries, found that 42% of 16- to 26-year-olds in Germany were in favor of using nuclear power plants as a bridging technology to help us reach climate goals.

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In The News
Laure Gautherin and Bertrand Hauger

“Never Again…” Zelensky Evokes History In Speech To German Bundestag

👋 Bonġu!*

Welcome to Thursday, where the fate of hundreds trapped in the rubble of Mariupol theater is still unknown, with the Russian-led attack prompting U.S. President Biden to call Putin a “war criminal”. Meanwhile, Ukraine’s President Zelensky conjures up history in a moving speech before Germany’s Bundestag. For Worldcrunch, Ranjani Iyer Mohanty argues that Canada’s Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland risks letting her emotional attachment to Ukraine, where she has family roots, undermine her ultimate responsibility of doing what’s in the best interest of Canada.


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Fukushima Disaster A Decade Later: This Happened, March 11

One of the most striking photographs of the destruction caused by the tsunami that struck Japan and set off the worst nuclear accident since Chernobyl.

Today marks 10 years since an earthquake and subsequent tsunami devastated Fukushima in Japan, killing 18,000 people, destroying towns and triggering the world's worst nuclear disaster since Chernobyl.

At 2:46 pm, the strongest Japanese earthquake ever recorded struck off the northern coast and created monstrous waves up to 16 meters high. On detecting the earthquake, the active reactors automatically shut down, which sparked the meltdown of three nuclear reactors at the Fukushima Daiichi plant, at the time one of the largest nuclear power plants in the world. The explosions of the reactors released large quantities of radiation that contaminated a vast area of northern Japan.

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Pierre Le Hir

Nuclear Past, Radioactive Future: In Chernobyl, 30 Years Later

As plants and wildlife struggle to survive in the area contaminated by the April 26, 1986 nuclear disaster, some elderly villagers have returned.

CHERNOBYL — Forest, nothing but forest, as far as the eye can see. Dense, thick and impenetrable forest. On either side of a stretch of asphalt scarred by potholes, ominous-looking pine trees stand tall while frost-covered birch trees make a ghostly view. Among the branches, overtaken by sprouts of weeds, bramble and underbrush, are a couple of abandoned red-brick houses, with their tiled roofs sunken, their windows wide open like empty eye sockets and their faded shutters flapping about in the wind. Here, at the start of spring, a shroud of snow covers the ground, frozen beneath a pale sun. Welcome to the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone.

To enter, one need only consult one of the numerous agencies specialized in so-called "dark tourism" — a tourism of horror, of the macabre, of the morbid, which stems as much from genuine interest as its does from pure voyeurism.

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Yann Verdo

Fukushima And Chernobyl, Two Anniversaries For Measuring Damage

Thirty years after the Chernobyl catastrophe and five years after Fukushima, scientists have had a chance to quantify their impact.

PARIS — On Friday, it will be five years to the day since an earthquake-triggered tsunami caused the explosion of three reactors at Japan's Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant. Then next month, on April 26, the world will also mark the 30th anniversary of the catastrophic nuclear accident at the Chernobyl plant in Ukraine.

In hindsight, what can we say about the impact on health, society and the environment of these major nuclear accidents? Here's a review of the primary conclusions from a host of researchers.

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The Yomiuri Shimbun

Five Years Later, Still Trying To Count Fukushima Deaths

The earthquake and subequent nuclear diaster in Fukushima were no doubt devastating, but Japan still struggles to quantify the number of deaths linked to them.

After the 2011 earthquake and subsequent nuclear accident, there are significant discrepencies in the percentages of deaths recognized as related to the disaster, The Yomiuri Shimbun has learned.

Across 25 municipalities affected in Fukushima Prefecture, the figures range from 33% in the city of Date to Soma's 100% as of the end of January this year, according to municipal governments.

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Alcoholism, Post-Quake Japan's Silent Aftershock

SENDAI — Alcoholism and related problems are becoming serious in the three Tohoku prefectures severely affected by the Great East Japan Earthquake of March 2011. The deaths of loved ones or the stress of a prolonged life as evacuees have led to increased alcohol consumption, and some are newly diagnosed as alcoholics even 4 1/2 years after the disaster.

Many people are believed to be unaware that they have a drinking problem. Municipalities and support groups are increasing their efforts to find potential alcoholics and provide assistance to evacuees.

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Google Shakeup, Portugal's Raging Fires, Our Dying Universe


Google, arguably the most recognizable company in the world, has announced a surprising rebranding in which all of its business entities will exist under a new parent company called Alphabet. As part of the restructuring, Google senior vice president Sundar Pichai will become CEO of Google, and company founder Larry Page will become chief executive of Alphabet. "Our company is operating well today, but we think we can make it cleaner and more accountable," Page said. "The whole point is that Alphabet companies should have independence and develop their own brands." Read more about the restructuring and Google's new chief from NBC.

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