Sunday, May 29, 2011


Email from Tokyo:

Dear Friends,
I do not normally bombard my friends and family with petitions, but this is critical. We live on a ranch in Central California -- an area that is breathtakingly beautiful -- AND only a few miles from the Diablo Canyon Nuclear Power Plant.

I am in Japan right now where the nuclear disaster is an on-going nightmare. It is the beginning of rainy season and damaged facilities at Fukushima Daiichi are now being flooded with rain water -- the new threat of radioactive contamination. We wait anxiously to see what else may happen, as the radioactive materials seep into groundwater.

There's only been a trickle of new news about Fukushima in the US/World media, but here, it is a daily reality. The newspapers are filled with new information, as are the tv shows. Daily regional radiation counts appear in the newspaper like weather forecasts, or sports scores. It is surreal.

The anti-nuclear movement has been put on hyperspeed in Japan. One good thing to come out of the Fukushima disaster. People who have been working hard, despite opposition from pro-nuke neighbors and government, are finally beginning to feel like their decades-long struggle has not been in vain. The other day, there was a news item on tv about a lady who lives 300 meters from a nuclear plant they had just started to construct. She was the only one who refused to sell her land to the power company!! It was a tiny house (a small log house she built herself for her mother!) but equipped with solar panels and wind turbines. In a conformist country, you can imagine the kind of struggles she's had to go through. But she was feeling optimistic, at last. The plant's construction has been put on hold for the moment and she hopes it will be canceled. She was saying how glad she was that things have started to change before they had brought in any radioactive materials.

Another news item was about rural areas trying to do small-scale hydroelectric, using the abundant streams and rivers without damaging the environment. Everyone is thinking of renewable energy. I believe a non-nuclear future IS possible -- if we all work together.

It is raining today, too. Back on the ranch, I can go outside, spread my arms and enjoy a downpour. Here, I will be covered from head to toe. I am reminded of the line from Joni Mitchell's song Big Yellow Taxi. "You don't know what you've got til it's gone." PLEASE click here. PLEASE forward this to as many people as possible.

With gratitude and respect,

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