Anonymous, High Position in Public Office in Japan

“The population is indifferent”

N.N holds a high position in public office in Japan. He does not want to be named.


“Up until the Fukushima disaster, the nuclear industry in Japan was a closed circuit. Whoever complained was quickly cast out. In addition to the structural deficiencies, this was definitely one of the main reasons for the accidents at the nuclear power plant. Since then, a number of significant reforms have taken effect: ministries were reorganised and certain posts were created. I am politically independent and have worked for the governments of both political camps.
The attitude of the Japanese people towards nuclear energy is ambivalent. This reveals itself in those living close to the reactors. On the one hand they are quite sceptical, but on the other hand we have the saying “Don’t bite the hand that feeds.” The population in big cities are largely indifferent. In Japan you can leave the light on because you simply assume that electrical energy is available at all times and is virtually unlimited. People are of course open to renewable energy and event want to encourage it, but the readiness to limit or even renounce nuclear energy hardly exists.
The industry has zeroed in on this attitude. People say it would be quite feasible to renounce nuclear power plants, but they secretly hope that the original nuclear policy before Fukushima stays in place, which is that half of the electricity demand should come from nuclear sources by 2050. But after Fukushima, no one actually believes this will be the case, and I personally reckon that the majority of currently decommissioned reactors will be up and running sooner or later. On the other hand, I expect a phase-out in the long run. The only question is when will this happen. It’s crucial that clear targets are set now. I think it’s impossible to return to the previous nuclear policy. There will be no more nuclear energy in Japan by 2050 at the latest.”

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Kopie von Alter Wein im neuen Schlauch:

 

Kashiwazaki Kariwa, the world's largest nuclear power plant (Image: Triglav)

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Founded in 2012, the Association for Sustainable Journalism on the Internet is committed to high-quality, independent on-line journalism that stands the test of time. The association promotes and runs journalistic websites dedicated to topics that are hardly covered any more in conventional media. Its members include journalists, photographers, designers and web designers.

Pressbüro Seegrund, which was founded in 1989, is firmly established in the media landscape. Its focus is on feature reports, reportage and non-fiction books. It has launched a number of online magazines in recent years including www.alpenmagazin.org, www.mangel-und-moral.org, and the latest creation: www.mensch-und-atom.org.

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Association for Sustainable Journalism in Internet,
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Editor:
Pressebüro Seegrund,
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CH-9004 St. Gallen,
Tel. +41(0)71 671 10 73,
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English translation:
Elana Summers

 

Russian translation:
Alexej Scherbakov

 

Local interpretors: Galina Kovalch (Belarus),
Irina Gasanova (Ukraine), Chikako Yamamoto (Japan)

 

Authors:
Martin Arnold, freelance journalist, author and media entrepreneur for the past 30 years
Urs Fitze, freelance journalist, reportage on politics, the economy, science, travel and the environment" target="_blank">www.seegrund.ch,

 

 

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Without provoking or causing a scandal, www.society-and-the-atom.org wants to shake things up a bit by encouraging society to reflect on a subject that affects all of us: nuclear power. It is a subject that polarises, turning opponents and supporters into ideologues. And it is a subject that divides the informed and the uninformed in a way that creates intentional and unintentional dependencies. Against the background of the current debates on the 'energy transition', we want to contribute a critical discussion for all those who want to more know about nuclear power. And we want to do our bit to overcome the deep ideological divide that separates supporters and opponents. When it comes to this subject, the truth very quickly becomes relative – or is made relative. You move around in an area where experts, opinion makers, ideologues, affected persons, victims, lobbyists, politicians and world saviours jostle against each other. Everyone should be able to have their say, to tell their truth. The truth of the radiation victims as well as that of the power plant operators, the supporters and the opponents. The second objective of the book is to explore the many facets of truth – and remain receptive to all those who want to make it comfortable for us.

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