News / Asia

Thousands Protest Nuclear Power in Japan

Protesters hold placards condemning the use of nuclear power at a rally in Tokyo, Sunday, April 10, 2011, after a devastating earthquake and tsunami crippled the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear complex in northeastern Japan last month
Protesters hold placards condemning the use of nuclear power at a rally in Tokyo, Sunday, April 10, 2011, after a devastating earthquake and tsunami crippled the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear complex in northeastern Japan last month

Multimedia

Audio
Martyn Williams

Thousands of Japanese took to the streets of Tokyo to protest the country's nuclear-power plants. The rally occured as engineers continue to work on bringing the Fukushima Daiichi plant under control, after it was smashed by last month's earthquake and tsunami.

Around 3,000 people marched through central Tokyo, a large demonstration by Japanese standards.

The rally was organized by eight civic groups to protest the Hamaoka nuclear-power plant, which is located about 200 kilometers southwest of Tokyo in Shizuoka Prefecture. Hamaoka is built in the heart of a region that seismologists believe is well overdue for a massive undersea earthquake of a magnitude 8 or higher.

The disaster at Fukushima has people worried the same thing could happen again.

Demonstrator Kengo Ohmori said his faith in the safety of nuclear power has changed. He says he has always been told nuclear power was safe, but it was not until now that he realized how dangerous it can be.

Just under a third of Japan's power output in 2005 was derived from nuclear plants, making it the largest energy source for the country. Japan's Federation of Electric Power Companies anticipates that rising to almost half the energy output by 2030.  

Prior to the Fukushima accident, the country had 54 functioning reactors. Many of those marching want them all closed down. One of the protesters, Yoko Kataoka, says Japan should decommission its nuclear-power plants. She adds the country is frequently hit by earthquakes and should not rely on nuclear power in the first place.

The demonstration passed the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, which promotes nuclear power and regulates the industry, and past the headquarters of Tokyo Electric Power, the utility company that owns the Fukushima plant.

Protesters delivered a noisy message at both locations.

Demonstrations were also taking place in a Tokyo suburb and two other cities in Japan.

Opposition to nuclear power had slowly been falling in Japan, before the recent disaster. A 2009 government poll found 54 percent of Japan's people were uneasy about it, down from 66 percent in 2005.  The risk of accidents and earthquakes were cited as top concerns.

A new poll has not been taken since the earthquake and tsunami struck Fukushima.

You May Like

India PM Modi's Party Distances Itself From Religious Conversions

BJP under fire for being slow to rein in hardline affiliate groups allegedly trying to promote Hindu-dominant agenda by luring Muslims and Christians to convert More

Anti-Whaling Group Found in Contempt of Court

Radical environmentalists who threw acid and smoke bombs at Japanese whalers in the waters off Antarctica continue their campaign to disrupt Japan's annual whale hunt More

UN's Ban Urges End to Discrimination Against Ebola Workers

Ban was speaking in Guinea on the second day of a whistle-stop tour aimed at thanking healthcare workers of the countries at the heart of the epidemic More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
US Decision on Cuba Underscores Divisions Among Miami Cubansi
X
Sharon Behn
December 19, 2014 9:34 PM
For decades, older, more conservative Cubans have been gathering at Café Versailles on the corner of Calle Ocho to eat Cuban food and talk politics. After hearing of President Barack Obama’s decision, a number of them gathered in front of the café with posters to protest. VOA's Sharon Behn reports on the situation.
Video

Video US Decision on Cuba Underscores Divisions Among Miami Cubans

For decades, older, more conservative Cubans have been gathering at Café Versailles on the corner of Calle Ocho to eat Cuban food and talk politics. After hearing of President Barack Obama’s decision, a number of them gathered in front of the café with posters to protest. VOA's Sharon Behn reports on the situation.
Video

Video Three Cities Bid for Future Obama Presidential Library

President Barack Obama still has two years left in his term in office, but the effort to establish his post-presidential library is already underway. The bid for the Obama Presidential Library is down to four locations in three states -- New York, Hawaii, and Illinois. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, each of them played an important part in the president’s life before he reached the White House.
Video

Video Cuba Deal is Major Victory for Pope’s Diplomatic Initiatives

Pope Francis played a key role in brokering the US-Cuba deal that was made public earlier this week. It is the most stunning success so far in a series of peacemaking efforts by the pontiff. VOA religion reporter Jerome Socolovsky has more.
Video

Video Fears of More Political Gridlock in 2015

2014 proved to be a difficult year politically for President Barack Obama and a very good year for the U.S. Republican Party. Republican gains in the November midterm elections gave them control of the Senate and House of Representatives for the next two years -- setting the stage for more confrontation and gridlock in the final two years of the Obama presidency. VOA National Correspondent Jim Malone has a preview from Washington.
Video

Video Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacks

The school dropout rate is at an all-time high in Sudan's South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during the three-year civil war between the government and SPLA-N rebel forces. Adam Bailes visited Sudan's Nuba Mountains' region and reports many children are simply too scared to go to school
Video

Video VOA Reporter Tours Devastated Peshawar School

Islamist militants wearing military uniforms and strapped with explosives attacked a military run school Tuesday in the northwestern Pakistani city of Peshawar. At least 141 people were killed in the horrific attack, most of them young students. VOA reporter Ayaz Gul visited the devastated school and attended the funeral of the principal who courageously tried to save her students from the deadly attack.
Video

Video Nigerians Fleeing Boko Haram Languish in Camp Near Capital

In its five-year effort to impose Islamic law in northeastern Nigeria, the Boko Haram extremist group has killed thousands of people and forced hundreds of thousands to flee. Some of those who ran for their lives now live in squalor on the edges of the capital, Abuja. Chris Stein reports for VOA.
Video

Video Aceh Rebuilt Decade After Tsunami, But Scars Remain

On December 26, 2004 there was an earthquake in the Indian Ocean so powerful it caused the Earth’s axis to wobble a few centimeters. Onshore on the island of Sumatra, the resulting tsunami was devastating. A decade later, VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Banda Aceh, Indonesia, where although there is little remaining evidence of the physical devastation, the psychological scars among survivors remain.

All About America

AppleAndroid