[ RadSafe ] Japanese Environment minister withdraws radiation remark, apologizes to Fukushima residents

Roger Helbig rwhelbig at gmail.com
Sat Feb 13 03:52:27 CST 2016

This might be an interesting new wrinkle.

Roger Helbig

Environment minister withdraws radiation remark, apologizes to
Fukushima residents

by dunrenard

Environment Minister Tamayo Marukawa retracted her remark about the
government having “no scientific grounds” for its radiation
decontamination target in the Fukushima nuclear disaster, saying she
wanted to rebuild trust with local residents.
As the minister in charge of overseeing the decontamination efforts in
Fukushima Prefecture, Marukawa, 45, said Feb. 12 she wants to
“sincerely apologize to residents in Fukushima.”
During a speech in Matsumoto, Nagano Prefecture, on Feb. 7, she
labeled the government’s long-term goal of reducing radiation levels
near the crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant to an annual dose of 1
millisievert or less as having “absolutely no scientific grounds.”
A local newspaper, The Shinano Mainichi Shimbun, picked up the story
and reported her comments on Feb. 8, which she promptly denied having
At Diet sessions on Feb. 9 and 10, Marukawa stated that she had “no
recollection of using such wording” in the speech.
Nevertheless, she told the news conference on the evening of Feb. 12
that she had decided of her own volition to "retract the remark in
order to maintain a relationship of trust with residents in
Marukawa went on to say that the government's decontamination target
is “indeed scientific in the sense that it was set as a result of
thorough discussions by scientists.”
Her acknowledgment of making the faux pas will likely prompt the
opposition camp to go on the offensive during Diet sessions in the
coming week. For the time being, at least, Marukawa is standing firm.
She said she has no intention of stepping down and wants to continue
fulfilling her duties.
The decontamination goal was set by the Democratic Party of Japan-led
government of the time on the basis of recommendations by the
International Commission on Radiological Protection in the aftermath
of the triple meltdown at the Fukushima plant triggered by the 2011
earthquake and tsunami disaster.
After the newspaper covered her remarks, Marukawa told reporters on
Feb. 8 that she did not remember using such wording as “scientifically
ungrounded.” She repeated the plea at Lower House Budget Committee
sessions on Feb. 9 and 10.
During a regular news conference after the Feb. 12 morning Cabinet
meeting, the minister finally acknowledged the possibility of making
the remark.
She eventually retracted the comment later the day after obtaining a
memorandum of her speech and confirming the content with attendants.

dunrenard | February 13, 2016 at 9:46 am | Tags: decontamination |
Categories: Fukushima 2016 | URL: http://wp.me/phgse-lZ6


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