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2014-07-09
R.I.P. William 'Bill' Herbert Kelder - Intellpuke

2013-11-28
Gamers Donate 37,500 Pounds Of Food To Needy

2013-09-30
Statement From The Whitehouse Regarding The Government Shutdown

2013-09-29
An Open Response To 'Organizing for Action'

2013-08-26
Bayou Corne: The Biggest Ongoing Disaster In The U.S. You Have Not Heard Of

2013-04-21
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2013-04-19
Boston Police Closing In On Suspects

2013-04-15
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2013-01-03
The Press vs Citizens Rights and Privacy - Act 3

2012-12-30
CBS News - Year In Review 2012

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Colbert Nation: 2012: A Look Back

FIP Year In Review(s?)

2012-12-25
Happy Holidays

2012-12-21
Welcome To A New Era!

2012-12-16
An Open Letter To United Health Care, Medcom, And The Medical Insurance Industry In General

2012-11-17
Whitehouse Petition To Remove "Under God" and "In God" From Currency And The Pledge.

2012-11-15
December 21, 2012

2012-11-11
If Hillary Clinton Ran For President, She Would Probably Be The Best-prepared Candidate In American History

2012-11-10
CIA Director David Petraeus Resigns After FBI Investigation Uncovers Affair With High-Profile Journalist

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2012-11-07
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2012-11-06
Live Election Results

2012-09-30
FIP In Hiatus

2012-09-18
U.S.-Afghan Military Operations Suspended After Attacks

Iran Nuclear Chief Says IAEA Might Be Infiltrated By 'Terrorists And Saboteurs'

Romney Stands By Gaffe

2012-09-17
President Obama Says China Trade Practices Harm American Auto Parts Workers


Japan Investigation Finds Fukushima Nuclear Disaster Was 'Man-Made'
2012-07-06 15:57:20 (108 weeks ago)
Posted By: Intellpuke

The Fukushima nuclear disaster was a “man-made” accident caused by a utility and government regulators who put self-interest before the interest of the public, an independent parliamentary commission reported today after a six-month investigation into the crises.

The 641-page report, the first of its kind with wide-ranging subpoena powers in Japan’s constitutional history, is the result of more than 900 hours of hearings and 1,100 interviews with officials, including the former president of operator Tokyo Electric Power Co., or TEPCO, Masataka Shimizu, and former Prime Minister Naoto Kan.

The findings by the Fukushima Nuclear Accident Independent Investigation Commission detail a scathing indictment of TEPCO and the nuclear regulatory agencies that coddled the utility, despite knowing the risks of their purported inaction. It also criticizes Japanese leadership, saying Kan’s cabinet “lacked the preparation and mindset to efficiently operate an emergency response to an accident of this scope.”

The panel writes the direct causes of the Fukushima accident could have been prevented. Nuclear regulators and TEPCO were aware since 2006 that a large scale tsunami would lead to a power outage at the plant. They also knew the risk of reactor-core damage from the loss of seawater pumps. TEPCO “intentionally postponed putting safety measures in place,” while the Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency and Nuclear Safety Commission essentially looked the other way, according to the investigation.

“We found evidence the regulatory agencies would explicitly ask about the operators’ intentions whenever a new regulation was to be implemented,” the commission writes. “From TEPCO’s perspective, new regulations would have interfered with plant operations and weakened their stance in potential lawsuits.”

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Three of the plant’s six nuclear reactors suffered meltdowns, after the catastrophic earthquake and tsunami knocked out power to the cooling systems last year. More than 80,000 people were displaced as a result of the radiation fallout.

Contrary to TEPCO’s own investigation, which cites the tsunami as the main cause of the nuclear accident, the parliamentary report says the quake might have significantly damaged equipment necessary to ensuring safety. TEPCO was quick to blame the “unexpected” tsunami for the accident, not the “foreseeable earthquake” in order to avoid responsibility, the panel writes.

“This was a disaster ‘Made in Japan,” commission chairman Kiyoshi Kurokawa said in the report’s introduction. “Its fundamental causes are to be found in the ingrained conventions of Japanese culture: our reflexive obedience; our reluctance to question authority; our devotion to ‘sticking with the program,’ our groupism, and our insularity.”

The report was issued on the same day a nuclear reactor went back on the power grid in western Japan, for the first time since the Fukushima accident in March 2011.

All 50 of Japan’s reactors have been offline since May for maintenance and safety checks, but Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda has aggressively pushed to bring them back online to avoid power outages during the peak summer months, despite widespread opposition to nuclear power.

Noda has insisted sufficient safety measures are in place, and reactors can withstand another earthquake and tsunami similar to the one that hit Fukushima, but the public has remained skeptical.

The parliamentary panel casts doubt on government assurances, writing “safety of nuclear energy in Japan and the public cannot be assured unless the regulators go through an essential transformation process.”

Intellpuke: This is one of the more honest reports I've seen any government put out in a long time.

You can read this article by ABC News correspondent Akiko Fujita in context here: abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2012/07/japan-investigation-finds-fukushima-nuclear-disaster-man-made/


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