Dire Fukushima Warnings: Urgent Request to UN Secretary General

Green Action Japan – via enenews.com May 1, 2012 via

To: UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon

An Urgent Request on UN Intervention to Stabilize the Fukushima Unit 4 Spent Nuclear Fuel

A helmeted man walks past the rubbles and a burning building after a powerful earthquake, the largest in Japan's recorded history, slammed the eastern coasts in Iwaki city, Fukushima prefecture, Japan, Friday, March 11, 2011. Click to enlarge

Recently, former diplomats and experts both in Japan and abroad stressed the extremely risky condition of the Fukushima Daiichi Unit 4 spent nuclear fuel pool and this is being widely reported by world media. Robert Alvarez, Senior Scholar at the Institute for Policy Studies (IPS), who is one of the best-known experts on spent nuclear fuel, stated that in Unit 4 there is spent nuclear fuel which contains Cesium-137 (Cs-137) that is equivalent to 10 times the amount that was released at the time of the Chernobyl nuclear accident. Thus, if an earthquake or other event were to cause this pool to drain, this could result in a catastrophic radiological fire involving nearly 10 times the amount of Cs-137 released by the Chernobyl accident.

Nearly all of the 10,893 spent fuel assemblies at the Fukushima Daiichi plant sit in pools vulnerable to future earthquakes, with roughly 85 times more long-lived radioactivity than released at Chernobyl.

Nuclear experts from the US and Japan such as Arnie Gundersen, Robert Alvarez, Hiroaki Koide, Masashi Goto, and Mitsuhei Murata, a former Japanese ambassador to Switzerland, and, Akio Matsumura, a former UN diplomat, have continually warned against the high risk of the Fukushima Unit 4 spent nuclear fuel pool.

US Senator Roy Wyden, after his visit to the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant on 6 April, 2012, issued a press release on 16 April, pointing out the catastrophic risk of Fukushima Daiichi Unit 4, calling for urgent US government intervention. Senator Wyden also sent a letter to Ichiro Fujisaki, Japan’s Ambassador to the United States, requesting Japan to accept international assistance to tackle the crisis.

We Japanese civil organizations express our deepest concern that our government does not inform its citizens about the extent of risk of the Fukushima Daiichi Unit 4 spent nuclear fuel pool. Given the fact that collapse of this pool could potentially lead to catastrophic consequences with worldwide implications, what the Japanese government should be doing as a responsible member of the international community is to avoid any further disaster by mobilizing all the wisdom and the means available in order to stabilize this spent nuclear fuel. It is clearly evident that Fukushima Daiichi Unit 4 spent nuclear fuel pool is no longer a Japanese issue but an international issue with potentially serious consequences. Therefore, it is imperative for the Japanese government and the international community to work together on this crisis before it becomes too late. We are appealing to the United Nations to help Japan and the planet in order to prevent the irreversible consequences of a catastrophe that could affect generations to come. We herewith make our urgent request to you as follows:

1. The United Nations should organize a Nuclear Security Summit to take up the crucial problem of the Fukushima Daiichi Unit 4 spent nuclear fuel pool.

2. The United Nations should establish an independent assessment team on Fukushima Daiichi Unit 4 and coordinate international assistance in order to stabilize the unit’s spent nuclear fuel and prevent radiological consequences with potentially catastrophic consequences.

30 April 2012
Shut Tomari (Japan) [...]
Green Action (Japan) [...]

Endorsed by:
Hiroaki Koide Kyoto University Nuclear Reactor Research Institute (Japan)
Mitsuhei Murata Former ambassador to Switzerland and to Senegal
Board member, Global System and Ethics Society (Japan)
Akio Matsumura Former United Nations diplomat
Robert Alvarez Senior Scholar, Institute for Policy Studies, Washington, D.C. (USA)
Masashi Goto Former Nuclear Plant Engineer (Japan)

Signing organizations: 72 Japanese organizations have signed this petition (as of 30 April 2012)

1. Shut Tomari, Hokkaido
2. Green Action, Kyoto
3. Citizen’s Nuclear Information Center, Tokyo
4. Osaka Group against Mihama・Ooi・Takahama Nuclear Power, Osaka
5. Aging Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant Group, Tokyo
6. Stop Hamaoka Nuclear Power Plant!, Shizuoka
7. Espace des Femmes, Hokkaido
8. “Let’s learn Pluthermal” Shiribeshi Citizen’s Network, Hokkaido
9. Hairo Action Fukushima, Fukushima and Evacuation Areas in Japan
10. STOP MOX! Fukushima, Fukusima
11. Fukushima Moonlight, Fukuoka
12. Yawatahama Women’s Group to Protect Children from Nuclear Power Plant, Ehime
13. Ikata People Against Mox, Ehime
14. We Do Not Want Plutonium! , Tokyo
15. Genkai Nuclear Power Pluthermal Trial Support Group, Fukuoka
16. Genkai Nuclear Power Pluthermal Trial support Group, Fukuona
17. Pluthermal and 100 Years of Saga Prefecture Group, Saga
18. No Nuclear Plants! Yamaguchi Network, Yamaguchi
19. Food Policy Center・Vision21
20. Genpatsu Yamenkai, Fukuoka
21. Japan Environmental Law Lawyers Association (JELF)
22. Nonviolent Direct Action Network (HANET)
23. Anti-Nuclear-Power and Nuclear Fuels Reprocessing Protest Advertising Group, Tokyo
24. Kochi Green Citizen’s Network, Kochi
25. Kaku-no-Gomi Campaign, Chubu, Nagoya, Aichi
26. Aloha from Hawaii
27. Tohoku Asia Information Center, Hiroshima
28. No-Nukes Citizen’s Network, Tokushima
29. No-nukes Net Kushiro, Hokkaido
30. Fukushima Meeting for Environment, Human Rights and Peace, Fukushima
31. FoE (Friends of the Earth Japan), Tokyo
32. Citizen’s Group on Nuclear Waste, Horonobe, Hokkaido
33. Team From Now On, Hokkaido
34. No Nukes! Protect Children from Radioactivity
35. Concerned Citizens for Children’s Human Rights, Ehime
36. Protect the Sea of Sanriku from Radioactivity, Iwate
37. Iwate Organic Farming Study Group, Iwate
38. Dandelion House, Tokyo
39. Decommission All Nuclear Power! Women’s Group for Protection of Kariwa Village, Niigata
40. Sapporo Shoku Machi Network, Hokkaido
41. Citizens Wind for Peace, Tokyo
42. Together with the Earth NPO, Osaka
43. Kawauchi Tsuyukusa Group, Kagoshima
44. Group against Construction of Kawaunchi Nuclear Plant, Kagoshima
45. Hassei Group against Ikata Nuclear Plant, Ehime
46. For Citizen’s Autonomy, Hokkaido
47. No-Nukes Women Group・Hokkaido, Hokkaido
48. Hokkaido Peace Net, Hokkaido
49. Future for Fukushima Children, Hokkaido
50. Good Bye Kashiwazaki Kariwa Nuclear Power Project, Niigata
51. Weaving A Better Future Mothers’ Group
52. Group Aozora MeeMee
53. Mothers and Fathers’No-Nukes Declaration 2011
54. Southern Osaka Network for Protection from Radioactivity, Osaka
55. Kansai Network on Protection of Children from Radioactivity, Kansai
56. Journey To the Future
57. Morinokoya
58. Kaburaya
59. Nishiyashiki
60. Dandelion Fortress, Fukuoka
61. Dohatsuten Wo Tsuku Kai, Fukuoka
62. Global Ethics Association
63. Buppouzan Zenngennji
64. STOP Nuclear Plants BEFORE Huge Quake Strikes!
65. Lee Group to Prevent Earthquake Disaster and Nuclear Accident
66. Rokkasho Village・ Home of Flowers and Herbs, Aomori
67. Anti-TEPCO-Nuclear-Power Consumers Group, Tokyo
68. Miyazu Mitsubati Project, Kyoto
69. Citizen’s Plaza, Minoh , Osaka
70. Monoh Citizen’s Group on Good Bye Nuclear Power, Osaka
71. Campaign Fukuoka against Nuclear and Uranium Weapons, Fukuoka
72. Seeking for Japan-US Security Treaty Termination Notice, Tokyo

Read the letter here

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