Friday, December 30, 2011

Fukushima: Truth and Consequences

One of the most significant events of the year was the natural disaster that struck Japan which precipitated a catastrophic triple meltdown at the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant. Although the Japanese government has engaged in the charade of declaring a "cold shutdown" the crisis is far from over. In the most recent episode Radio Ecoshock host Alex Smith does a good job of cutting through the disinformation. The show cites Japanese blogger EX-SKF, who provides hard to come by details about the situation, and Kazuhiko Kobayashi who exposes the cronyism that is preventing the government from acting in the public interest. Smith also scrutinizes the sensational claim made in a recent scientific paper that 14,000 Americans were killed by fallout. As you know, correlation does not imply causation and the study does not establish a link between the meltdowns and the spike in mortality. As Alex rightly observes, "Given that doubt, I find the headline for the study press release misleading. We don't know Fukushima fallout caused 14,000 American deaths." We don't need overinflated claims like this distracting from the real tragedy. As a recent NPR report detailed, the damage caused by these meltdowns is so terrible and long lasting that it has turned Japan "into a nation of guinea pigs."

Radio Ecoshock - Fukushima: Truth and Consequences (1 hr)

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