Friday, April 6, 2012

Disaster Debris INSIDE NO ENTRY ZONE IN FUKUSHMA May Spread Far and Wide

because the Ministry of the Environment cares about free competition.

The Ministry of the Environment put out a notice asking for public comments, for 6 days instead of the normal 30 days, on the proposed revisions of the Special Law to deal with the contamination from radioactive materials.

What are the revisions proposed? The Ministry wants to allow waste disposal companies to dispose debris that is inside the 20-kilometer radius no-entry zone and planned evacuation zone (in Namie-machi, Iitate-mura for example) around Fukushima I Nuclear Power Plant, instead of the national government doing it.

Their reasoning? Reading the Ministry's press release (translated below), they must be thinking like this:

  1. 20-kilometer radius no-entry zone and planned evacuation zone around Fukushima I Nuke Plant are being reorganized.

  2. In many areas inside these zones, the government is about to allow people and/or businesses back in. The huge debris cleanup operations need to be done.

  3. However, if the government does all these cleanup operations, it's just not fair to the private businesses outside the areas who would otherwise get the business of cleanup.

  4. Since the Ministry cares deeply about free competition, it will allow the private waste disposal companies to clean up the debris inside the no-entry zone and the planned evacuation zone.

What's the problem here, you ask?
  • Industrial waste disposal companies have been regularly sending industrial wastes all over Japan for disposal for years.

  • Moving the non-industrial waste outside the area where the waste is generated needs a consent from a municipality on the receiving end, but with the Miyagi/Iwate disaster debris wide-area disposal scheme - the disaster debris is treated as "non-industrial waste" - now there are ways for the non-industrial debris inside the zones in Fukushima to reach the municipalities who have agreed to receiving the Miyagi/Iwate debris.

From the Ministry of the Environment press release on April 3, 2012 (h/t @tsunamiwaste for finding it):

環境省では、放射性物質汚染対処特措法施行規則改正案について、平成24年4月3日(火)~4月9日(月)までの間、広く国民の皆様の御意見をお聴きするパブリックコメントを実施します。 本件は、行政手続法に基づく手続です。

The Ministry of the Environment is soliciting comments from the Japanese citizens on the revisions of the special law to deal with the contamination from radioactive materials, between Tuesday April 3 to Monday April 9, 2012. This is a procedure based on the Administrative Procedure Act.


1. About the revision of the speical law to deal with the contamination from radioactive materials


Based on the decision by the Nuclear Disaster Response Headquarters on December 26, 2011, the no-entry zone and the planned evacuation zone (hereafter called "no-entry zone etc.") will be re-classified. Business activities are expected to commence in the areas with low air radiation levels inside the no-entry zone etc. even before the lifting of the designations of the no-entry zone etc., and a significant amount of waste may be generated.


If the national government disposes the waste resulting from the business activities, it may result in competitive disadvantage for the waste disposal businesses outside the area where the government is responsible for disposal of contaminated waste. Therefore, a measure is necessary to avoid such disadvantage.


Specific revisions are as follows:


The waste generated by business activities will be excluded from the waste that the government is responsible for disposing; instead, the businesses that generate such waste will dispose as regular [non-industrial] waste or industrial waste.


However, the disaster recovery projects (such as road repairs) by the national or local governments need to be carried out as quickly as possible. Therefore the waste generated by such disaster recovery projects will be disposed by the national government.

If you have something to say to Hosono and his gang, and if you write Japanese (it has to be in Japanese), here's the email address:

In your email, you need to include the following information:

  • Subject: 放射性物質汚染対処特措法施行規則改正案に対する意見

  • Your name, address, telephone or email address

  • Your opinion, and the basis for your opinion (cite the sources as necessary)


vastman said...

You need to listen to the latest msmbc rachael maddow show, second story, on Fuk...seems they are prepping the american public, after a looooong media blackout, for the unraveling that's underway...

Anonymous said...

The Japanese government has done NOTHING to make me confident that they even care about safely cleaning up this contamination. The ONLY things they seem to be doing is running a PR campaign to make the problem look smaller than it is. Why would anyone trust the government to open this area up, or let anyone ship anything out of it? They have not tested every square meter for alpha emitters, for strontium, or for any of the many dangerous radionuclides that people seem to be finding there on a regular basis. This is criminal behavior, a violation of international treaties regarding the handling of radioactive waste and MUST BE CALLED OUT by every foreign country with an embassy in Japan. These fools must be stopped.

Anonymous said...

Someone who can say it in Japanese please post a note to government that if they go through with this plan, they must also provide funding to pay independent citizen groups to follow every vehicle hauling waste out of that plant, to watch where it is dumped, and to test what's in it. There is no way that any industry should be trusted to always do the right thing with this waste. Very easy to cheat.

Anonymous said...

Any of you press folks out there looking for a pulitzer, I suspect you need do nothing more than follow a few of these trucks, report what's in them and where they are getting dumped.

Anonymous said...

Spread the death around! I have to say one thing about the Japanese People....they sure put up with a whole lot of bullshit!

Anonymous said...

They aren't the only ones.
We don't even need to be concerned about contaminating one of our largest aquifers.

If the US can classify depleted uranium as low level waste- Class A,

The Japanese should have no trouble in scattering/burning/leaking radionuclides all over the place.

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