Japanese Fishing Feels Fallout From Fukushima

Sep 6, 2013

A Japanese fisherman prepares Sanma from Hokkaido - August 7, 2011
Credit Jamie Williams / Flickr Creative Commons

South Korea is banning all fish imports from Japan's Fukushima region because of what it calls growing public worry over radiation contamination that has reportedly prompted a sharp decline in fish consumption.

“They're trying to rebuild after all of this, and there [are] still contaminants there,” University of Oklahoma College of International Studies Assistant Dean and comparative politics expert Rebecca Cruise told KGOU’s World Views. “The fishing industry is almost devastated and they still have people that are displaced from these events.”

Tokyo Electric Power Company has acknowledged that contaminated underground water has been flowing into the Pacific since soon after reactor meltdowns caused by the 2011 earthquake and tsunami. Recent leaks from tanks aggravated fears that the amount of contaminated water at the plant is getting out of hand.

Regular panelist Joshua Landis says even though scientists have underlined that any radiation that travels across the Pacific Ocean will be smaller than initially expected, it still highlights the dangers of nuclear power.

“We saw in Vermont just recently a nuclear power plant was closed down and not renewed because people are very anxious about it,” Landis says. “That's going to be an ongoing part of our debate and how we use energy and whether nuclear power is really going to be a big part of it in the future.”


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