The Fukushima Disaster One Year On

fukushima-greenpeace-middle-east-jordan The Fukushima disaster forced 150,000 people to flee their homes – a year later, radioactive contamination is still keeping them away

In the lead up to the first anniversary of the Fukushima nuclear accident, Greenpeace have published a report looking back at the incident. As well as documenting the legacy of the nuclear disaster, they insist that now is the time to demand a renewable and nuclear-free future.

With various countries in the Middle East considering the nuclear option, I think its important that we look carefully at the impact and implications of the nuclear accident in Fukushima. Jordan, for example, has plans to build a 1,000 megawatt (MW) nuclear reactor by the end of the next decade and Israel insists it has mastered how to build a ‘safe nuclear reactor’ in the desert. In fact, Greenpeace campaigners in Jordan are planning a protest against their government’s nuclear plans to coincide with the Fukushima anniversary this March.

Greenpeace International has released a series of photographs by Robert Knoth of haunting images depicting abandoned villages, empty schoolyards and the contamination left behind after Fukushima. Titled Shadowlands, the interactive exhibition also explores the constant worry and fears over contamination from the triple meltdown at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant.

The Fukushima disaster which began to unfold on March 11, 2011 was the biggest since the Chernobyl disaster of 1986. An earthquake and tsunami hit the east coast of Japan and soon people where fleeing their homes as the nuclear plant hit meltdown. It is believed that a total of 150,000 Japanese people have been displaced due to the incident.

Dr. Rianne Teule, a radiation expert who has worked with Greenpeace for a decade, added “The Fukushima disaster shows that nuclear power is inherently unsafe. The ‘clean and safe’ nuclear energy that the industry talks about is a myth. A disaster like this can happen again and the impacts are devastating… I pray that the Fukushima disaster will contribute to speeding up the Energy [R]evolution and help push the world into a truly clean energy future.”

: You can explore the interactive gallery which also profiles individuals and the direct impact of the nuclear disaster on their lives here.

:Image via Robert Knoth at Greenpeace.

For more information on Nuclear in the Middle East see:

As Japan Nuclear Plants Meltdown, Israel To Build ‘Safe’ One In Desert

Greenpeace Raises More Questions About Jordan’s Nuclear Plans

Jordanians Step Up Nuclear Protests

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