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Wednesday, April 23, 2014
What Happened to Japan's Plan for "Zero Nuclear Power by Year 2030"? - A column by SAITO Minako 斎藤美奈子コラム（東京新聞）英訳
Here is an English translation of Satito Minako's column that appeared in Tokyo Shimbun on April 16. ４月１６日『東京新聞』の斎藤美奈子氏による「本音のコラム」の英訳です。
The Focus of Our Attention
Translation by Yayoi KOIZUMI
Shinbun, April 16, 2014,
Column of Hon’ne (true inner
“Nuclear energy is an important base-load power
source”; “We will continue to restart the nuclear power plants that meet
regulation standards.” The basic energy plan, approved by the government in a
cabinet meeting on April 11th, made a malevolent return to the state of energy plan to the level similar
to what it was prior to 3.11. The
content of the new plan makes you stop and say, “are you serious?”
happened to the policy put together two years ago, by the Noda Yoshihiko administration
(of Democratic Party of Japan), touting to “make operation of nuclear power
plant to zero within the 2030s”? That particular policy was created legitimately,
having gone through proper channels of hearings, public comment period, and use
of deliberative poll to gauge public opinions.
though it was its own party’s policy which was rejected by the Abe LDP administration’s
new plan, the Democratic Party has not guts to fight; the party representative
Kaieda Banri failed to express a clear opposition against the plan as he meekly
called it to be “impossible to evaluate.”Worse, on April 4th, in the lower house, the party voted yes
to the Nuclear Power Agreement Approval Plan (原子力協定承認案), which will allow
Japan to export nuclear energy. This, is the kind of attitude that drives away even
more supporters from the party, hmm-hmm.
the Fukushima nuclear accident, the new plan says: “we would like to face steadfastly
with the heartaches of those who have been affected by the accident.” Is this an emotional sort of issue for them, one
you can conveniently put aside only by acknowledging “the heartaches of the
worse: on April 11th, to the inquiry by the former Prime Minister
Kan Naoto, about the basis for their claim for “the strictest standard in the
world” applied for the safety and restart of nuclear power plants, a person in
charge from the Energy Ministry responded: “I am unable to answer the question.”
such issues of grave importance were being discussed in the Diet, our media instead
was making a hoopla about Ms. Obokata Haruko’s STAP cell’sexistence. (1)
science, but these nuclear issues are also science. Both are science. Ask
yourself: which one shouldwe focus our attention to?
Yayoi KOIZUMI is a Ph.D. candidate in the field of East Asian Literature, Religion, and Culture at Cornell University. She is working on a dissertation on the representations of people of African descent in Japan since the WWII. She can be contacted at yk234 at cornell.edu.