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HOME  > Past issues  > 2014 October 29 - November 4  > Environment ministry receives 170K signatures opposing storage of nuclear waste
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2014 October 29 - November 4 [SOCIAL ISSUES]

Environment ministry receives 170K signatures opposing storage of nuclear waste

October 30, 2014
A residents’ group of Tochigi’s Shioya Town, a candidate site for final disposal of radioactive waste from the crippled Fukushima nuclear power plant, on October 29 submitted to the Environment Ministry a petition signed by 170,000 local people calling for withdrawal of the ministry’s decision selecting the town to host the disposal facility.

The number of signatures is 14 times more than the town’s population, which the group collected from people inside and outside the town in just two months.

The Environment Ministry at the end of July selected a state-owned area of Takahara Mountain in the town as the final destination site for the Fukushima NPP’s nuclear waste.

The submitted petition urges the ministry to retract its selection by citing that the selected area is located near a source of spring water, which is listed in the ministry’s own list of the 100 best water sites in Japan, and that Takahara Mountain is a volcanically-active mountain.

Shioya Town Mayor Mikata Kazuhisa and Japanese Communist Party member of the town assembly Hashimoto Iwao (assembly vice chair) also joined in the submission of the signatures.

Hashimoto said, “Taking into account the weight of public opinion, the ministry should retract its decision. It should also revise the law concerning handling of Fukushima disaster-related waste and get local consent before choosing a site.”

Receiving the signatures, State Minister of the Environment Ozato Yasuhiro expressed his hope to hold a briefing in order to ease residents’ anxieties.

Past related article:
> 2,000 people rally to oppose construction of final disposal facility for nuclear waste [September 2, 2014]
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