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Press Conference on Fukushima Daiichi Disaster

May 4, 2012
New York City, New York

Japanese nuclear scientist and Japanese and U.S. medical doctors to discuss current radiological health conditions and concerns in Japan after the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear reactor catastrophe.

Time: 10:00 am - 11:00 am
Location: Rissho Kosei-kai, 320 East 39th Street (between First Ave. & Second Ave.)

A press conference about the on-going, rarely publicized, and still grave situation around the stricken Fukushima Daiichi nuclear reactors, featuring a nuclear scientist from Japan, and first hand medical reports of clinical and on site observations in Japan related to the Fukushima radiological contamination. Discussion will include the immediate needs to protect Japanese citizens now living in contaminated areas, for better monitoring of radioactive content of food, and for the cessation of incineration and burying of radioactive tsunami rubble throughout Japan. Watch the livestream here.

Featuring: Mr. Hiroaki Koide, Assistant Professor, Research Reactor Institute of Kyoto University, Japan; Dr. Junro Fuse, Internist, Japan; Dr. Ken Nakayama, Orthopedic Surgeon, Japan; Dr. Andrew S. Kanter, President, Physicians for Social Responsibility, USA; Kazko Kawai, Voices for Lively Spring, Japan; Mari Inoue, Human Rights Now, USA.

Media Interviews: To schedule media interviews after the event, please contact Kazko Kawai at 212-432-0705 or kazko@aol.com for interviews with Japanese speakers; or Alfred Meyer at 202-215-8208 or alfred.c.meyer@gmail.com for interviews with PSR speaker.

Details: Hosted from Japan by Voices for Lively Spring, Human Rights Now, and Physicians for Social Responsibility. Mr. Koide, the best-known nuclear scientist and concerned medical doctors from Japan and USA will share their experiences and speak about the on-going nuclear crisis in Fukushima. They will discuss the under-reported health consequences after the nuclear disaster, health risks resulting from inadequate food safety standards, and the environmental dispersion of radioactive materials by government burning of radioactive disaster debris. Voices for Lively Spring, a Japanese citizens’ group, Physicians for Social Responsibility, a U.S. NGO, and Human Rights Now, a Japanese international human rights NGO, feel that the international community is not adequately informed about the evolving “current status” and the remaining serious problems in Japan after the nuclear disaster. The nuclear scientist and medical doctors from Japan and US will be available for media interviews.

Background: A year after the nuclear disaster in Fukushima local communities in Japan continue to be exposed to radioactivity. Radioactive materials are still being released into the air, soil and ocean - from the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant. Many citizens still live in areas where the radiation level is dangerously high. The Japanese government continues to keep its citizens in harms’ way by applying a 20mSv per year standard to establish evacuation zones. Citizens in the rest of Japan also remain in danger of being exposed to unsafe levels of radiation due to widespread radiological contamination from the accident, food safety standards that are not strict enough to protect children, and the Japanese government continuing to burn and bury the radioactive disaster debris in municipalities across the nation.

Speakers:

Hiroaki Koide, Nuclear Reactor Specialist and Assistant Professor at Kyoto University Research Reactor Institute. After realizing in 1970 that nuclear power was extremely dangerous, Mr. Koide dedicated over 40 years of his career to educate the nuclear industry and the general public to stop nuclear reactors in Japan. After the nuclear disaster in Fukushima, he gained “rock star” status due to his tireless efforts in providing detailed analysis and honest suggestions to the Japanese community about the extent of the disaster. He will speak about the extremely dangerous conditions at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant, including the concerns regarding the damaged Unit 4 irradiated fuel pool.  

Dr. Junro Fuse, Internist and head of Kosugi Medical Clinic near Tokyo, Japan. In June 2011, he started to use social media as the main tool to educate the general public on risks associated with radiation exposure. He will discuss unusual medical symptoms among their patients after the nuclear accidents, issues within the Japanese medical communities to protect citizens from the disaster, health risks in association to the burning of radioactive tsunami debris and his concerns with the current food safety standards in Japan.

Dr. Ken Nakayama, Orthopedic Surgeon from Japan.  Following the 3/11 earthquake, he entered the exclusion zone in Fukushima for three days as a member of the government’s Disaster Medical Assistance Team to rescue patients abandoned at a hospital.  In December 2011, he spoke in a press conference in Osaka along with Dr. Fuse in opposition to the government policy for incinerating tsunami rubbles across the country.

Dr. Andrew S. Kanter, President of the Board of Directors of Physicians for Social Responsibility, has studied radioactive plume projections from nuclear reactor accident scenarios and other public health impacts of nuclear radiation dispersion.  He is the director of Health Information Systems/Medical Informatics for the Millennium Villages Project for the Earth Institute at Columbia University as well as an Asst. Prof. for Clinical Biomedical Informatics and Clinical Epidemiology at Columbia University.  Will speak about the need for accurate and timely information regarding exposure to radioactivity in order to protect and promote public health.

Co-sponsoring organizations:

VOICES FOR LIVELY SPRING: Founded in December 2011, Voices for Lively Spring is a Japanese advocacy group for safe environment, working to save lives of Japanese people in the post-Fukushima era.  It hosts seminars by renowned scientists and journalists in large cities between Tokyo and Osaka, and sends instructors to local study groups to teach a radiation protection course in Shizuoka Prefecture, which is Japan’s focal point of the radioactive debris issue at the moment.

PHYSICIANS FOR SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY: Physicians for Social Responsibility (PSR) is the largest physician-led organization in the U.S. working to prevent nuclear war and proliferation and to slow, stop and reverse global warming and toxic degradation of the environment.. PSR was founded in 1961 and succeeded in achieving the Limited Nuclear Test Ban Treaty that ended the global radioactive contamination produced by atmospheric nuclear bomb testing. PSR shared in the 1985 Nobel Peace Prize awarded to International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War (IPPNW), for building public pressure to end the nuclear arms race. Guided by the values of medicine and public health, PSR works to protect human life from the gravest threats to health and survival.

HUMAN RIGHTS NOW: Human Rights Now (HRN) is an international NGO based in Tokyo with more than 700 members, composed of lawyers, scholars and journalists. HRN dedicates itself to the protection and promotion of human rights. To raise awareness of the situation in Fukushima after the nuclear accident, HRN organized a human rights forum in March 2012 at the UN Church Center in conjunction with the 56th United Nations Commission on the Status of Women.  Mothers and children who were evacuated from Fukushima spoke about the great and ongoing disruption of their lives. Our goal is to inform the international community about the ongoing crisis and advocate for the protection of communities in Japan.

Resources

  • Video: Nuclear Health Risks

    PSR President Dr. Bob Gould talks about the risks to public health and the global environment posed by nuclear weapons and energy. Read more »

  • Annual Report 2012

    PSR is pleased to present its 2012 Annual Report to our members and other stakeholders. Read more »

  • Fukushima Disaster: Impacts & Continuing Threats

    More than two years since the nuclear disaster began at the Fukushima Daiichi reactors, its impact is massive and widespread. It will be decades before the full scope of the impacts of this ongoing disaster is fully understood but significant health, economic, environmental and social consequences are already evident and quantifiable. Read more »

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