Fukushima After Five Years

Matsumoto, Chie

Publisher:  Against the Current
Date Written:  01/03/2016
Year Published:  2016  
Resource Type:  Article
Cx Number:  CX21360

In the five years since the triple meltdown at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant, at least 100,000 people remain displaced; 80 people have committed suicide in Fukushima alone over the loss of their families.



More than 6000 workers go in and out of the Daiichi plant in Fukushima every day, according to TEPCO. Some 300 additional people continue to decontaminate the no-go zones and fill black flexible container bags with radioactive soil to prepare for the victims' return home. Thousands of these black bags are piled up with no place to be taken.

The general contractors, their subsidiaries and TEPCO are running out of workers fast. A recent newspaper report said foreigners have been recruited for the cleanup in and around the Fukushima plant.

I have also interviewed a Bangladeshi man in central Kanagawa Prefecture who took a job offered by a Brazilian recruiter to work at the plant. He jumped on the truck with several other foreigners, he said. The pay was about 30% better than the construction work he had then.

The 43-year-old man left the job, however, in a few days because he "got scared" of the effect of radiation on his health. He may take it again, though, if he needs the money, he said.