Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Fitting the Radiation Safety Piece into the Jigsaw Puzzle: Restoring Agriculture and Food Sector Aftermath the Great Tohoku Disaster

Time and Date: 1-5PM on 8th November 2011. Venue: Room #801, Kokukaikan, Tokyo
Institute for Global Environmental Strategies, Hayama, Japan

For general participants: please get in touch at prabhakar@iges.or.jp or call if you wish to register your attendance in this event.

The Great Tohoku Earthquake that occurred on 11th March 2011 is the most powerful earthquake in the known history of Japan. A chain of events unfolded after the earthquake that included a tsunami of historical magnitude that damaged critical infrastructure such as nuclear power plants located in Fukushima leading to release of unknown quantities of nuclear radiation into the environment. As a consequence of these series of events, lives of more than 25,000 people were lost, many went missing, and hundreds and thousands were displaced into various prefectures of Japan. Though Japan is known for its advanced earthquake and tsunami risk mitigation measures, these events have clearly overwhelmed the national and prefectural administration leading to a national emergency that is still unfolding.
Subsequently, many policy makers and disaster risk reduction specialist in Japan and abroad have been focused on how to rehabilitate the displaced people and how to reconstruct the affected areas. The national and affected prefectural governments have put in place several measures for rescue, rehabilitation, compensation, and reconstruction in the affected areas. Amidst all these discussions and developments, one aspect seemed didn’t not get much attention as much as it deserves i.e. the radiation safety aftermath of damage to nuclear power plants in Fukushima. The release of unknown quantities of radiation into environment has several implications in terms of health safety of citizens even beyond the disaster affected areas, mistrust on Japanese exports, delayed rehabilitation in areas with high radiation exposure, demand for imported food, and implications in terms of economic growth for a country whose economy primarily depends on exports.
This raises important questions that need immediate answers from the perspective of civil society and disaster risk reduction professionals: what radiation related issues are faced by the civil society, how food safety regulations in Japan consider radiation contamination, what specific limitations are posed by the radiation for speedy disaster recovery, and what it all means for the resilience of the Japanese society as a whole? These are also the questions that the civil society in Japan is interested to know answers for, as evident from several discussion boards and networks that have emerged on Internet. This informal event aims to address these questions in a greater detail with an objective of finding way forward. This initiative is funded by the Asia Pacific Network for Global Change Research (APN) through the project CRP2010-02CMY-Pereira.
Contact: prabhakar@iges.or.jp; +81-80-5631-0541


13:00  Welcome remarks                                                         SVRK Prabhakar
13:05  Session I: Rehabilitation of food and agriculture in Japan post-Fukushima
>The impact of Fukushima event on food and agriculture and measures for it [Mr.Toshihiko TAKEMOTO, PRIMAFF
>The impact of low concentration radiation on food in Japan [Mr.Seiichi Oshita ]
>The radioactivity found under cooperative work of agriculture [Ms. Tomoko M. Nakanishi, University of Tokyo]
>Consumers’ voice and activities of Pal-System for food contaminated by radiation [Mr.Michimoto MATSUMOTO, COOP, Japan]
>People’s  voice and activities to ensure food safety from radiation [Ms.Setsuko YASUDA, Vision 21]
14:25  Session II:
 Managing radiation hazard: Information management and linking civil and nuclear administration  
>Health safety post Fukushima: Study findings from radiation doses in education institutions: [Mr.TSUZI Masayoshi]
>Information of radiation and civil society[Mr.Mikio NAKAYAMA]
>Presentations from Disaster Risk Management Professionals [Prof Hari Srinivas]
15:25  Coffee Break:  
15:40  Session III: Citizens Charter: Civil Society Perspectives  
>Citizens perspective: Antonio Portela
>Issues and experience from Network I: Pieter FRANKEN, Safecast
>Issues and experience from Network II: David Sidney Moore, Tokyo Kids and Radiation
16:40  Session IV: 
Discussion on implications of Fukushima on the resilience of Japan and policy suggestions
>Open Discussion among all participants

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