April 10, Sunday

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Charity Flea by Nuffnang & Park Royal!


Gabi reports:

Tokyo levels are getting lower :
. Daily Radiation Levels  

Compensating the farmers in the contaminated regions will be a problem coming up now.
. Agriculture minister Michihiko Kano in Fukushima  

. . . . .

Learn from the past:

78 YEARS AGO : Saturday, March 4, 1933
and vivid memories of 1896 (the magnitude 8.2 Meiji Sanriku earthquake),
. Earthquake in Iwate .  

12,915 people are confirmed dead
14,921 have been listed as missing
a total of 27,836.

. . . . .

The composer Sakamoto Ryuichi 坂本 龍一 held a cherity concert in New York on Saturday, playing piano requiems.
The tenor Placido Domingo from Spain also held a concert in Tokyo, with about 3600 people attending. He even sung the famous "furusato" (hometown) song of Japan. His next concert is scheduled on Wednesday. He was not afraid to travel to Japan amid the hype of radiation.


Bulletins from NHK Online

source : www3.nhk.or.jp

Saturday, April 09, 2011 22:10 (last night)
China expands food bans
China says it will expand its ban on agricultural imports from Japan due to public concerns about radioactive contamination in food following problems at the nuclear facility in northeastern Japan.
The Chinese government announced on Saturday that it was adding 6 prefectures to the current 5 to make a total of 11, including Tokyo, from which it will not accept food imports.
It said the additional measure was taken because radioactive substances from the nuclear plant are contaminating agricultural products.
It said it will require Japanese exporters to submit official documents on place of origin or certification that foods from outside prohibited areas have been tested for radioactivity.
The Chinese people became sensitive about radiation in food after authorities there detected an extremely low level of radioactive iodine in spinach grown in Beijing and Tianjin last Tuesday.
They are also worried about the fact that the Japanese nuclear plant operator, Tokyo Electric Power Company, had discharged low-level radioactive water into the ocean.
The Chinese government apparently hopes to calm public anxiety by stepping up its import bans on Japanese agricultural products.
The Japanese Embassy in Beijing said China's move is totally opposite to trends in Japan. It said it will call on the Chinese government to base its actions on rationality and scientific findings.

Sunday, April 10, 2011 07:30
Radioactive water disposal delayed

Work to dispose of highly radioactive water at the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant is not proceeding smoothly as more time is needed for preparations.
Heavily contaminated water in turbine buildings and a concrete tunnel is hampering work to restore cooling functions in the troubled reactors. The total amount of water in question is estimated at more than 50,000 tons.
The plant's operator, Tokyo Electric Power Company, plans to transfer the highly radioactive water to a nuclear waste processing facility and turbine condensers.
The utility firm is now working to lay hoses between the turbine buildings and the facility.
Holes have already been bored in the walls of the buildings, but work to install the hoses has yet to begin.
In addition, the waste disposal facility needs to be closely checked before the procedure can begin.
Meanwhile, the level of highly radioactive water filling the concrete tunnel of the No.2 reactor had reached 93 centimeters below the ground's surface as of Saturday evening. That is a rise of 11 centimeters since the leakage of the water into the sea was stopped on Wednesday.
Tokyo Electric plans to start moving the water in the tunnel into the reactor's condenser as early as Sunday.

Sunday, April 10, 2011 06:52
Cherry trees bloom in quake-hit areas

Cherry trees have begun to bloom and bring solace to local people, in coastal areas of Fukushima Prefecture that were ravaged by the March 11th tsunami.
On Saturday, a local civic group spotted some blossoms on a Somei-Yoshino cherry tree at an unmanned weather station in Iwaki city.
The group monitors the tree, which has long been used by local weather authorities as a benchmark for cherry blossoms.
The tree stands about 300 meters from the shoreline and is still surrounded by the remains of destroyed houses and other debris.
Locals have been anxiously watching to see if the tree would bloom this year after the powerful tsunami.
Govt to release radiation guidelines for schools
Japan's education ministry will release radiation exposure safety guidelines for school children in the coming week.
The ministry is drawing up the guidelines in response to a request from the Fukushima prefectural government, which hosts the disaster-stricken nuclear power plant.
Officials say the guidelines are based on data collected through radiation level surveys at schools and soil samples taken from schoolyards.
The guidelines will mandate that schools suspend classes, stop outdoor lessons, and ensure students wear face masks if radiation surpasses certain levels.
The education ministry says it will seek technical advice from the Nuclear Safety Commission before finalizing the guidelines.
The commission told reporters on Saturday that given the high radioactive readings registered in various locations, many schools in the affected areas would be asked to meet certain conditions before resuming lessons.

Sunday, April 10, 2011 06:52
SDF, US forces to conduct search operations

Japan's Self-Defense Forces and the US military will conduct massive search operations on Sunday, for victims who are still missing after the March 11th earthquake and tsunami that struck northeastern Japan.
The joint operations follow similar ones conducted for 3 days from April first that recovered 339 bodies.
More than 14,000 people remain unaccounted for, which prompted local authorities to request additional search efforts.
Sunday's search operations cover coastal and inland areas from Iwate to Fukushima prefectures, but not the 30-kilometer zone surrounding the disaster-stricken Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant.
The joint mission will involve 22,000 personnel from both countries, and 50 vessels and 90 aircraft will be deployed.

Sunday, April 10, 2011 13:07
Kan pledges to build 70,000 temporary houses

Prime Minister Naoto Kan has told the governor of quake-hit Miyagi Prefecture that the central government will build 70,000 temporary houses as quickly as possible.
Kan arrived in the prefecture on board a Self-Defense Force aircraft on Sunday morning. He visited Ishinomaki city hall for talks with Miyagi Governor Yoshihiro Murai and Ishinomaki Mayor Hiroshi Kameyama.
Governor Murai asked for sufficient assistance for people who are going through immense suffering following the March 11th earthquake and tsunami.
Mayor Kameyama requested that temporary housing be built as quickly as possible for those who have lost their homes.
Kan said the government has set an immediate goal of building 70,000 temporary houses and will speed up construction as much as possible.
The prime minister said the government will convene a panel of experts this week to study a blueprint for reconstruction. He asked the Miyagi governor to convey requests from affected areas as well as the whole idea of reconstruction.
Governor Murai told reporters that fishery and agriculture are the key industries in the affected areas, and that he hopes Kan will relate what he saw to the reconstruction panel.
Kan later went up a hill to survey areas that sustained extensive damage from tsunami, and visited evacuees at a shelter.

Sunday, April 10, 2011 14:46
SDF, coast guard divers search harbor

As part of the massive search operation on Sunday, the Maritime Self-Defense Force and Japan Coast Guard searched waters around a fishing port in Fukushima Prefecture for those who remain missing.
In the joint search off Shinchi Town, about 40 divers searched the harbor and nearby coastal waters, where no search had taken place before.
At Tsurushihama port, a team of 8 SDF divers repeatedly went underwater for about 30 minutes.
Town authorities say more than 400 houses in coastal areas were swept away by tsunami, and that 31 people remain missing as of Sunday morning.

Sunday, April 10, 2011 17:00
Kan vows to help rebuild fishery industry

Prime Minister Naoto Kan has vowed to provide full support to disaster-hit coastal areas in northeastern Japan to help reconstruct the local fishing industry.
Speaking to reporters on Sunday, Kan made the pledge during his visit to Ishinomaki City in Miyagi Prefecture.
The prime minister said he realizes how badly the fishing industry has been hit by the March 11th earthquake and tsunami and how much effort and resources are needed to rebuild it.
He stressed that the government should do all it can to restore the industry, which has provided people with their livelihood for centuries.
In response to requests from the prefectural governor and city mayor, Kan also pledged the government would build 70,000 temporary houses as quickly as possible for those who have lost their homes.
During a visit to a shelter for disaster survivors, Kan was seen asking them what is needed most.
At a Self-Defense Force base in Sendai City, Kan told personnel of SDF and the US military that US troops have been very supportive of both relief efforts in disaster-affected areas and responses to problems unfolding at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant.
Kan said he will never forget Operation Tomodachi, which he believes has strengthened bilateral ties.

Sunday, April 10, 2011 18:35
Anti-nuclear activists hold rally in Tokyo

Demonstrators have staged a rally in Tokyo to call for the closure of all nuclear power plants in Japan.
The protesters marched more than 4 kilometers, holding up banners.

Sunday, April 10, 2011 18:35
Arsenic found in well water in quake-hit Kesennuma

Officials in disaster-hit Kesennuma City, Miyagi Prefecture, say that well water and streams near a defunct mine are contaminated with toxic arsenic.
They say that slag and mud containing arsenic and other toxic substances flowed out of Oya mine after the massive quake on March 11th. They believe these toxic substances have contaminated streams and soil in residential areas.
When the officials examined 6 water samples from the area, they found that 3 contained levels of arsenic which exceeded the permitted limits for drinking water.
The highest figure was 0.24 milligrams of arsenic per liter, or 24 times the legal limit.
Local health authorities are warning residents not to drink well water or from mountain streams, although water with this level of contamination can be used for washing and cleaning.
JX Nippon Mining & Metals says it will remove the contaminated slag as quickly as possible.

quote from September 04, 2011
Mud containing arsenic is being washed ashore in coastal communities already struggling to come to terms with the enormity of the destruction wrought by the March 11 mega-earthquake, tsunami and Fukushima nuclear disaster.
At 36 out of 129 sampling points in Iwate, Miyagi and Fukushima prefectures, the three prefectures hardest hit by the March 11 disaster, Tohoku University researchers found arsenic concentrations exceeding environmental standards.
In several places, arsenic contamination was 4 or 5 times the government's maximum, and at one sampling point in Kesennuma, Miyagi Prefecture, the concentration was 25 times the standard.
"Arsenic that flowed into the sea and accumulated on its floor in the past was apparently stirred up by the tsunami," said Noriyoshi Tsuchiya, a professor of geomaterials and energy science at Tohoku University.
The Tohoku coastline used to be dotted with mines, where arsenic and other heavy metals were generated during smelting. Arsenic also exists in nature, and was detected in soil along the coast of Miyagi Prefecture in a 2006-08 survey by Tohoku University. ...
source : www.asahi.com

. . . . .

Sunday, April 10, 2011 18:35
Fukushima prefecture to measure radiation levels

Fukushima Prefecture has decided to measure radiation levels at 2,700 locations and disclose the data amid growing concern about radioactive contamination.
Many residents have demanded information on the radiation levels in their communities following the radiation leaks from the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant.
Fukushima Prefecture and the government's disaster task force will measure radiation levels at 2,700 locations in 55 municipalities, except for those within a 20-kilometer radius of the power plant.
The levels of radioactive iodine and cesium in soil will be analyzed in some areas.
Seventy prefectural employees will carry out the work between Tuesday and Friday, and will disclose the results to residents.

Sunday, April 10, 2011 18:40
TEPCO uses unmanned equipment to remove rubble

Tokyo Electric Power Company has bugun using unmanned heavy equipment to remove radioactive rubble at the tsunami-hit Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant.
Hydrogen explosions blew off the ceilings and walls of the Number One and Number Three reactor buildings. The debris is emitting hundreds of millisieverts of radiation per hour in some places, hindering the restoration work.
The utility started using remote-controlled power shovels and bulldozers to remove the rubble on Sunday afternoon.
Operators are using cameras attached to the equipment as well as 6 fixed cameras at the site to carry out the work from hundreds of meters away.
A lead-covered mobile operating room will be used to remove debris from places that cannot be reached by radio waves.
TEPCO says the rubble will be put into containers and stored at the plant under strict supervision, as it may be contaminated with high levels of radiation.

Sunday, April 10, 2011 19:10
82 children orphaned in March 11 disaster

Japan's health ministry says a total of 82 children in 3 northeastern prefectures lost parents in the massive quake and tsunami on March 11th.
The Health, Labor and Welfare Ministry says that as of Saturday, 44 children in Iwate, 33 in Miyagi, and 8 in Fukushima had been orphaned by the disaster.
It says the number could rise as there are many children whose parents are still unaccounted for.
The ministry, together with the education ministry, has instructed education boards and school officials across the country to notify child consultation centers about children orphaned by the disaster.
The heath ministry will continue to survey the number of quake and tsunami orphans and their living conditions before it draws up measures to assist them.


Voices from around

. The Daily Reading List .  

. Japan Times, April 10 .  


Haiga by Alex Serban, Romania


. . . . . to live without . . . . .

children in the slums of the world
they live without running water
they live without electricity
they live without proper toilets
they live with hope for the future

children in the shelters of Tohoku


haiga by Gabi Greve

spring breeze
the flutes of Fukushima
are silent

spring tsunami
the mourning sounds
of flutes

the sound of a flute
and one last pine

Ella Wagemakers



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  1. Anonymous4/10/2011

    Prime Minister Naoto Kan is making arrangements to write a message of gratitude in newspapers around the world for the global support Japan received following the earthquake and tsunami disaster, government sources said Saturday.

    The message is to be published Monday when the March 11 disaster hits the one-month mark, they said. Japan has received support in various forms from more than 130 countries and regions, including those in the private sector.


  2. Anonymous4/10/2011

    Our neighbour in the next street has a Japanese cherry tree ... the sakura there bloomed last week. What a sight it was, standing against the light grey sky!
    I take it as an sign of rebirth ... for Japan!
    a friend from Holland

  3. Anonymous4/10/2011

    We are with you in the spirit of haiku worldwide.
    a friend from Kenya

  4. Anonymous4/10/2011

    TEPCO tries to enclose high radiation in sea in nuke crisis

    TOKYO, April 10, Kyodo
    Tokyo Electric Power Co. started Saturday to install enclosing materials in the sea to prevent a further spread of highly radioactive water that seeped from a crisis-hit nuclear power plant, while continuing other efforts to stabilize Japan's worst nuclear crisis.

    A Cabinet minister visited the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station in Fukushima Prefecture on the same day for the first time since it was rocked by explosions and began emitting radioactive materials shortly after the March 11 quake and tsunami.

    During his roughly 45-minute stay, Economy, Trade and Industry Minister Banri Kaieda encouraged workers manning an operational center on the premises and surveyed damaged reactors from inside a bus.


  5. Anonymous4/10/2011

    it is important and you are doing a wonderful job in your presentation and up to date information. Thanks Gabi!

  6. Anonymous4/10/2011

    You don't get to choose
    how you're going to die, or when.
    You can only decide
    how you're going to live.

    Joan Baez

  7. Thinking of all the children in the shelters of Japan .. and their parents trying hard to survive ...
    they are indeed right now the sorrow of the world, gabi.

  8. Anonymous4/11/2011


  9. Takashi Uesugi: The Interview (April 1, 2011)

    Obviously a lot has happened over the past couple of weeks, but what are the main things you've learned?

    Basically, something that I knew from the beginning, but has become more blatant yesterday and today [March 27-28], is this terrible situation where the government and TEPCO are suppressing information.

    TEPCO are such an important advertiser that the television and newspapers are completely silent.

    . . .

  10. Anonymous4/11/2011



    Mainichi Shinbun

  11. Anonymous4/21/2011

    Japan after big earth quake is that they really fully keep recovering from the loss in a quick span of time.
    online training