June 12, Sunday

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mulberry tea
from beautiful Tohoku -
a sip of the past

. CLICK on the photo for more mulberry information .


Gabi reports:

. . . . . at 5:09
Earthquake M 4.6, off the coast of Fukushima

. . . . .

How the village of Yoshihama survived the tsunami:
. Yoshihama in Iwate .


Bulletins from NHK Online
source : www3.nhk.or.jp

Sunday, June 12, 2011 01:29
Japanese hold anti-nuclear rallies
A series of anti-nuclear demonstrations were held across Japan on Saturday. The rallies coincided with the 3 month anniversary of the March 11th earthquake and tsunami that resulted in the accident at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant.
About 2,400 protesters took part in a rally in central Tokyo. Gathering in Minato Ward, they called for the closure of nuclear power plants and a change in the government's energy policies.
A man from Fukushima Prefecture said the nuclear accident is a problem for all Japanese people. He said as long as the country continues to rely on nuclear power, another Fukushima-type accident could happen.
The protesters then marched to the headquarters of Tokyo Electric Power Company, the operator of the Fukushima plant.
They demanded that the people of Fukushima Prefecture be given back their lives.
A 39-year-old man said he fears radiation as it cannot be seen. He said each person must raise his or her voice to demand the closure of nuclear power plants.

Sunday, June 12, 2011 01:29
23,482 people confirmed dead or missing
The number of people who died or are listed as missing from the March disaster now stands at 23,482.
Police say 87 percent of the 15,413 people who died have been identified.
8,069 people, who were reported to the police, remain missing.
88,361 people are staying in shelters in 21 prefectures around Japan.

Sunday, June 12, 2011 01:29
Fujitsu servers being relocated
Amid growing concerns over power shortages, a major electronics maker has begun to relocate its servers from its laboratory near Tokyo to Toyama Prefecture on the Sea of Japan coast.
The Fujitsu servers in Kawasaki City contain a large amount of data, including those on product development. They run continuously and consume a large amount of electricity.
However, large-scale users of electricity in the area served by the Tokyo Electric Power Company are being required by law to limit the amount of consumption this summer in anticipation of power shortages.
... Fujitsu says 3,600 of about 10,000 servers located in the Kanto region will either be relocated or halted.

Sunday, June 12, 2011 05:07
TEPCO forced to review reactor 4 cooling plan
The operator of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant has been forced to reconsider its plan to cool the spent fuel storage pool of the No.4 reactor.
Water injection from a special vehicle has not been intense enough to cool the water in the pool, allowing the temperature to remain at more than 80 degrees Celsius.
Tokyo Electric Power Company, or TEPCO, aims to install a circulatory cooling system that will pump water out of the pool and return it there as coolant. The utility originally hoped to put the system in place next month.
On Friday, workers entered the 4th floor of the No.4 reactor building where the pool is located for the first time since the nuclear disaster took place.
They found a large hole in a wall created by the March 15th explosion. They also discovered that a nearby pipe necessary for the cooling system had been mangled.
TEPCO says the repair team found it hard to work near the pool as equipment had been destroyed and debris was scattered on the floor.
Fixing the damaged pipe is expected to be extremely difficult. In addition, it remains unclear if there is another pipe that can be used for the cooling system.

Sunday, June 12, 2011 05:07
Candles lit for disaster victims
Hundreds of candles were lit at a school playground in Miyagi Prefecture, northeastern Japan, on Saturday night, in memory of the victims of the March earthquake and tsunami.
About 80 people gathered at an elementary school in Ishinomaki City on the day, exactly 3 months after the disaster.
They prayed for the victims' souls to rest in peace and around 600 candles and lanterns were lit.
The candles were arranged by children to form the word "Ganbaro", or "Keep the spirit up".
The school has accepted 22 children from another school, many of whose pupils died in the disaster or remain missing.
A 5th grader said he lost many friends in the disaster and that he wants to overcome the hardship together with his surviving friends.
A local 74-year-old woman said she became tearful as the candlelight reminded her that the disaster claimed many lives.

Sunday, June 12, 2011 01:29
Kan pledges efforts for speedy clean-up
Prime Minister Naoto Kan says he will see to it that debris in Japan's disaster-hit area is cleaned up as quickly as possible.
Kan made the remarks in Kamaishi City in Iwate Prefecture, on Saturday. Massive piles of rubble that remain strewn throughout the area since the March 11th tsunami are hindering rebuilding efforts.
Kan said he will push for a budget to speed up the removing of the debris so that people can start to rebuild their lives.
Kamaishi mayor, Takenori Noda, told Kan that the central and prefectural governments must work together to rebuild infrastructure and plan a town that can withstand tsunami.
He asked Kan to establish an agency specializing in recovery efforts as soon as possible because the area is facing difficulties.
Kan said he will try everything including compiling a supplementary budget. He said he is considering a new law on land use that would help residents near the coast move to inland areas.
Kan also said the central and prefectural governments must find places to dispose of the debris, even outside of the damaged municipalities.

Sunday, June 12, 2011 11:00
Measures to prevent heatstroke to be added
The operator of the troubled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant says it will implement measures to prevent workers from being hit by heatstroke.
About 2,500 people work at the plant. Many of them wear protective suits and full-face masks to lower exposure to high radiation.
But the work is getting tougher physically and mentally as summer approaches. So far, 12 workers have been diagnosed as suffering from heatstroke.
Tokyo Electric Power Company will set up 7 more rest areas in addition to the 8 existing ones.
Workers can take off the protective gear, drink water, and lie down there.
In addition, the company will supply 2,500 vests containing cooling gel which will be worn underneath the gear.
1,300 face masks which provide extra air during inhalation will be secured.
The health ministry had given instructions to the utility to improve working conditions.

Sunday, June 12, 2011 15:08
Radioactive water treatment likely to be delayed
Treatment of highly radioactive water at the troubled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant is likely to be delayed by a problem with the flow of water.
The system being installed at the plant includes a device to remove cesium using zeolite, as well as equipment that settles out radioactive substances using specialized chemicals.
Tokyo Electric Power Company, or TEPCO, said on Sunday that it has found that water does not flow in one of the 4 units as expected.
TEPCO had planned to start a test-run of the device on Friday, but it was postponed after the firm found another problem, which needed repairing first.
The operator hopes that the system will lower the concentration of radioactivity and expects to treat 1,200 tons of radioactive water a day.
TEPCO is trying to identify the cause of the problem.

Sunday, June 12, 2011 23:11
Water treatment device fixed
The equipment failure that has delayed the test of a system to treat highly radioactive water at the troubled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant has apparently been resolved.
Tokyo Electric Power Company says it will carry out a test-run after checking the equipment once more on Monday.
The problem occurred with a device made by the US-based Kurion company that removes radioactive cesium.
The utility had planned to start the test run to check the device's performance on Sunday, 2 days behind the original schedule.
But when the pumps were activated prior to the test run, one of the 4 systems that is designed to move 12 and a half tons of water per hour was found to be running very slowly.
The system ran normally when operating on its own.
TEPCO suspects that a water-flow valve may have temporarily stopped functioning, and is investigating the cause.
It will operate the 4 systems simultaneously on Monday, and will start the test run if no problems are found.
The problem is expected to delay by a few days the system's full-fledged operation, originally planned for June 15th.

Sunday, June 12, 2011 23:11
Bottled water boom
Japanese retailers are stocking up on imported bottled water as summer approaches. Demand for emergency water supplies has been on the rise since the March 11th earthquake and tsunami.
Major retailing group Seven & I Holdings began importing water from Taiwan last month. It plans to sell about 15 to 20 million bottles each month through its convenience stores and supermarkets.

Sunday, June 12, 2011 23:11
Kan to work to pass bill for debt-covering bonds
Prime Minister Naoto Kan has agreed with the Secretary General of his ruling Democratic Party, Katsuya Okada, that the budget bill for debt-covering bonds should be passed under his administration.
Calls have been mounting from within the party for Kan to step down soon, so that it may gain the opposition parties' support in passing the bill.
Kan told Okada at his official residence on Sunday that he would like to be responsible for passing the bill.
Okada responded that the bill is essential for this fiscal year's budget, and that reconstruction efforts in the disaster-hit areas would be affected if it does not pass the Diet.
As the current Diet session is scheduled to end on June 22nd, Okada plans to discuss extending it with the opposition parties this week.
Kan also told Okada that an increasing number of requests are coming in from the disaster-stricken areas. He said many of these cannot be fulfilled with the first supplementary budget, indicating that he wants to stay on to draw up the second supplementary budget.


Voices from around

. Daily Radiation Levels .  

. . . . .

Japan Times :

Three months marked since killer quake, tsunami
The Great East Japan Earthquake and the deadly tsunami it spawned are remembered exactly three months on with both prayers and protests.

Ex-adviser slams Kan, NSC for locals' exposure
A damning report by an adviser to the government on the Fukushima nuclear crisis criticizes the Nuclear Safety Commission and Naoto Kan's administration for failing to protect residents from radiation.
Toshiso Kosako 小佐古敏荘, a professor of radiation safety at the University of Tokyo, wrote in the report submitted to Prime Minister Naoto Kan just before he stepped down as adviser in late April that the government failed to make efficient use of forecasts on the spread of radioactive substances from the Fukushima plant.

Tsunami map to aid reconstruction
... It will mark areas submerged by tsunami following the major 1896 and 1933 quakes off the coast of northeastern Japan and the 1960 Chilean temblor, and include information on upland areas suitable for replacement residential districts.

Tepco vents No. 2 reactor while U.S. surveys ocean
Tokyo Electric Power Co. said Saturday it began filtered venting of the No. 2 reactor building at the crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant to reduce radiation levels to the point where workers can go inside.

150 police officers to attend Tepco shareholders' meeting
... About 7,000 shareholders are expected to attend the June 28 meeting, said the official, who declined to be identified. Residents from Fukushima, where Tepco's crippled nuclear plant lies, may stage demonstrations, the official said.

Mutant rabbits, economic meltdowns and nuclear tourism

Those opposing Kan offer no clear reason he must go


Back from the dead:
Astonishing pictures show how Japan is recovering
just three months after tsunami

Kesennuma, Miyagi 気仙沼 宮城
source : www.dailymail.co.uk


Yasuomi Koganei

Meguro International Haiku Circle
2011 6th Haiku Meeting: June 11

dog left behind
running, running, running after the family car
--the N-plant and desolation

Midori Tanaka

minnows eating
the dusty moon
school pool in Fukushima

Yasuomi Koganei 小金井康臣

source : haikuinformation board

Hare hops merrily
having forgotten
the quaking ground

Navita Kalra (Canada)

sad spring
not that far
from the disaster zone

Michi Umeda

source : Meguro International Haiku Circle



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