News / Asia

World Leaders Review Nuclear Policies

This screengrab taken off Japanese national broadcaster NHK shows a Japanese military twin-rotor cargo helicopter dumping water onto reactor no. 3 at the stricken Fukushima nuclear power plant on March 17, 2011.
This screengrab taken off Japanese national broadcaster NHK shows a Japanese military twin-rotor cargo helicopter dumping water onto reactor no. 3 at the stricken Fukushima nuclear power plant on March 17, 2011.

Multimedia

The threat of a nuclear meltdown at the Fukushima power plant in Japan is causing anxiety about the safety of nuclear power plants worldwide.

Fifty workers are the only ones left, essential employees permitted inside Japan's Fukushima power plant.  And even they have evacuated the facility several times when radiation levels spiked.  The crisis is causing worldwide repercussions.  

Germany has taken its oldest seven reactors off line for three months.  It will then decide whether to extend the lives of the plants.  German Chancellor Angela Merkel. "In the light of this situation, we will proceed with a security check of all our nuclear plants," she said.


Fanny Zierle lives near one of those plants. "I certainly do have my worries, but I do not have sleepless nights.  Those who have invented this technology should have sleepless nights," she said.

The European Union is conducting stress tests on 143 nuclear plants to see how they would withstand shocks.

The head of the International Atomic Energy Agency, Yukio Amano, is worried. "The situation is very serious," he said.

China is strengthening its radiation checks even though winds from Japan are expected to carry radiation away from China, into the Pacific.

Authorities in Taiwan plan to stage nuclear disaster drills near three nuclear power plants.  Parliament wants to stop construction of a fourth plant.  President Ma Ying-jeou says faced with disaster, Taiwan would give up its reactors to save its people. "If it is impossible to rescue the situation, we must sacrifice," he said.

In the United States, Energy Secretary Steven Chu says the American people can have "full confidence" in the country's nuclear power plants even though some plant designs are similar to those in Japan.

"We’re going to look at what went wrong in terms of double barrel whammy - of this huge, huge earthquake and huge tsunami and look to our reactors again and learn as much as we can so we can, if needed, improve the safety," she said.

Robert Alvarez, with the Institute for Policy Studies, says this is the end to any resurgence in the nuclear industry. "Overall you have a slamming of the breaks going on, and while people might be giving reassurances and rhetoric about their support for nuclear power, I don’t think you should be deluded into thinking they’re not having second thoughts worldwide about the viability of nuclear power and the safety of the existing reactor fleet around world," she said.

Especially, when some of the world's nuclear plants, like the one at Fukushima, are in earthquake zones.  

You May Like

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. More

Video Sudan School Becomes Target of Aerial Attacks

Dropout rate at an all-time high in South Kordofan state because many schools have been destroyed during 3-year civil war More

Tennessee Songbirds Fly Coop Long Before Tornadoes Arrive

Researchers say birds apparently alerted to danger by sounds at frequencies below range of human hearing 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: Response to Sony Hack Will Be Proportionali
X
Aru Pande
December 19, 2014 1:45 AM
The White House says President Barack Obama considers the cyberattack on Sony Corp. a serious national security matter and that the U.S. will counter with an "appropriate response." VOA correspondent Aru Pande reports.
Video

Video US: Response to Sony Hack Will Be Proportional

The White House says President Barack Obama considers the cyberattack on Sony Corp. a serious national security matter and that the U.S. will counter with an "appropriate response." VOA correspondent Aru Pande reports.
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 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 Putin Says Russian Economy Will Emerge Stronger

Russian President Vladimir Putin has said his country's sinking economy will not only recover but also become stronger, despite falling oil prices and Western sanctions over Ukraine. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports.
Video

Video Detained Turkish Journalists Follow Teachings of US-Based Preacher

The Turkish government’s jailing of critical journalists has sparked international condemnation and is being seen as an effort to undermine the followers of an ailing Turkish preacher based in the United States. VOA religion reporter Jerome Socolovsky has more.
Video

Video ‘Anti-Islamization’ Marches Increase Tensions In Germany

Anti-immigrant rallies in Germany have been building in recent weeks, peaking Monday night in the city of Dresden where tens of thousands of people turned out to demonstrate against what they call the ‘Islamization’ of the West. Germany has offered asylum to more Syrian refugees than any other country, and this appears to have set off the protests. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
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.
Video

Video Refugees Living in Kenya Long for Peace in the Home Countries

Kenya is host to numerous refugees seeking safe haven from conflict. Immigrants from Somalia face challenges in their new lives in Kenya. Ahead of International Migrants Day (December 18) Lenny Ruvaga has more for VOA News from the Kenyan capital.

All About America

AppleAndroid