Archive for the ‘Fukushima Prefecture’ Tag

Fukushima Solar Fire   21 comments

 

Japan’s Renewable Energy Village

Fukushima Farmers Solar Rays of Hope in a Dark Land

renewable_energy_wno.org

 

Deserted Minamisoma_City_Office_wikimedia creative commons licenseDeserted_Lawson_Haramachikitahara_Shop_wikimedia creative commons licenseContaminated and deserted_Fukushima Prefecture_March 2011

Radio-active farmland in the Japanese prefecture of Minamisoma, a coastal city contaminated by nuclear fallout from the Fukushima Daiichi N-Plant in March 2011, is now leading the way in building a blueprint for modern Renewable Energy Villages.

Construction has already begun on this community run project to build the foundations of its Renewable Energy Village.

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Roughly two-thirds of the Minamisoma farmland is located inside of Fukushima’s radio-active exclusion zone.

Hi level contamination Minam.outskirts_greenpeace.org

  • To date the Renewable Energy Village (REV) prides itself on 120 photovoltaic panels, generating 30 kilowatts of power which is sold to a local utility.
  • Locating wind turbines on some of the land is another innovative idea currently in the planning stages.
  • Recreational and educational facilities as well as an astronomical observatory are also being aspired to depending on the availability of further funding.

Solar-SharingFukushima Farmers Solar Rays of Hope

renewable-energy-world_nuclear-news.netThe basis of this project is known in Japan as "solar sharing"growing crops beneath raised solar panels. Most other large-scale solar parks in Japan whether already operational or still in the planning stages have/will have solar panels resting on the ground itself, which makes growing crops impossible.

Solar sharing_bellona.ru

The largest solar park to be built in Japan of this nature will also be located in Minamisoma causing Project Leader Ryozo Hakozaki for the Renewable Energy Village (REV) some concerns; "If farmers decide to sell up their land, entire communities will be wiped off the map." However Sohei Takahashi, Project Chairman believes the Renewable Energy Village project offers a workable solution to this problem. "Through the project we can protect farmland and communities, and with two parallel revenues create increased prosperity compared with before the disasters."

 

Rapseed_anagarden.seTakahashi also plans to conduct research into crops that can tolerate radioactive contamination. One crop, rapeseed, has already been planted, as its oil is contaminants-free, although the actual plants do absorb a percentage of radioisotopes such as those of caesium. The project is supported by generous ‘feed-in tariffs’ the government set and which were introduced in mid-2012.

solar-energy-panels-and-wind-turbine_rapeseed field

All proceeds from the crops and energy will go back into the REV project, the hope and aspiration is that the model will inspire and be copied by farmers whose livelihoods were decimated by the nuclear disaster. "People evacuated from areas closer to the plant have given up ever farming their fields again. There might be an amusement park feel to the project, but we’re trying to show them what the future could hold." Project leader Ryozo Hakozaksolar-energy-panels-and-wind-turbine

Source: New Scientist

Japan Planning World’s Biggest Offshore Wind Farm To Replace Fukushima N-Plant   57 comments

                                               

Fukushima N-Disaster Puts Wind Up Japanese Government!

 

                                               Fukushima ExplosionFukushima 11 March 2012 Credit Reuters_Kyodo

Following the 2011 nuclear disaster at the Fukushima Daiichi Reactor, due to earthquake and tsunami damage, The Japanese government’s Agency for Natural Resources and Energy intends to replace the crippled nuke plant with the world’s largest offshore wind farm.

                                               fukushima before tsunamiSeveral-offshore-wind-line-on-the-horizon-on-cloudy-sky-background

The site is ideal for this purpose because the set-up is already in place to convey power when the Daiichi N-plant was still operational.

                                                     Environmental-protection-and-healthy-life_Image Credit: 123RFWind-farm-in-the-sea-3d-render_Image Credit: 123RF

Construction of 143 wind turbines on buoyant stands fixed to the ocean floor 16 kilometres (10 miles) off the coast of Fukushima is expected to be complete by 2020.

                          Solar-energy-panels-and-wind-turbine_Image Credit: 123RFSolar-energy-panels-and-wind-turbine_Image Credit: 123RFSolar-energy-panels-and-wind-turbine_Image Credit: 123RF

The wind farm will generate 1 gigawatt of power once completed, and is part of Fukushima’s plan to become completely energy self-sufficient by 2040, using renewable sources alone. It is also planning to build a Solar Farm which when construction is complete will be the largest in the country.

The closest rival to this planned Japanese wind farm – the Greater Gabbard farm off the coast of Suffolk, UK — currently the world’s largest farm, will surpass the has 140 turbines which generate 504 megawatts.

WindfarmInitially a 2-megawatt turbine, a substation and deep-sea cable system beneath the ocean will be constructed. More turbines would be assembled as and when they became affordable. It is hoped that suspended steel supports which would be attached to the ocean floor can be used as stands for the turbines rather than attaching them straight onto the bed of the ocean. Standing at a height of 200 metres the first turbine would have Ballast below it to ensure it stayed upright and stable.

Risk of Seismic Activity to Turbines

According to Takeshi Ishihara, the Project Manager, of the University of Tokyo Seismic activity risks will not be an problem.

The project’s tests including computer simulations and testing of water tanks have proved that in the event of earthquakes, tsunamis, typhoons etc the turbines will be safe.

                                                     Wind_turbines_farm_energy_production_to_the_world1025Wind-turbine-and-solar-cell-grows-in-the-field_Image Credit: 123RF

And if the wind farm was to be damaged although a power loss would occur, the problem of radioactive waste would not.

“All extreme conditions have been taken into consideration in the design. This project is important — I think it is impossible to use nuclear power in Fukushima again,” ~ Takeshi Ishihara

                                                  Wind-farm-Image Credit: shutterstocka-california-wind-farm-at-sunset-according-to-a-new-study-nighttime-temps-in-the-air-above-wind

The wind farm will be paid for using money currently being collected via a feed-in tariff scheme for wind projects set up by the government – Effective from July 1, 2012 money had been collected by a government wind project scheme, and it is this money that will be paying for the wind farm. According to Japan’s Wind Power Association there has already been an 8.2 percent increase in the energy producing capacity of these sort of plants.

Sources:

hindubusinessline.com

 NewScientist

dvice. com

Ref: Images:

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Discrimination against Fukushima’s “Nuclear Refugees”   20 comments

Fukushima Residents Suffer Discrimination At Refugee Shelters

Japanese residents who fled the vicinity of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant are being rejected by shelters and evacuation centres for fear they may be radioactive and contaminate others. These displaced people-”nuclear refugees” had to leave their homes, their farms, their animals, because of the nuclear crisis at the Fukushima Daiichi plant number 1 now will require an official certificate proving they are not contaminated in order to have shelters accept them, as they are expected to accommodate all the homeless.

Displaced Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Refugees

Radiation Fears and Distrust Push Thousands From Homes

Many are already traumatized by the tsunami that swept away entire towns in northern Japan, leaving more than 15,000 dead or missing. They tell tales of gruelling journeys, of post-disaster shortages, of scrounging for gasoline, and arriving with only the clothes on their backs.

They are driven not just by suspicion of the government but also by a deep fear of radiation, in a nation where the word conjures images of the atomic devastation at Hiroshima and Nagasaki. As they flee, they enter a life in limbo, camped out on gym floors with hundreds of others, uncertain when or if they will ever be able to return to their homes.

 japanese-child-screened-radioactivity-fukushimaScreening_for_radioactivityScanning Nuclear Refugees_Fukushima Radiation

Each shelter set-up to accommodate the displaced “nuclear refugees” around Fukushima Prefecture, where the plants are, unlike the areas further North ravaged by the tsunami, is equipped with radiation detection equipment at its entrance and serves as an entry checkpoint for people. These are staffed with health officials in plastic body suits and masks who scan new arrivals with Geiger counters to check for radiation.

Scanning For Radiation At A Temporary Scanning Centre For Residents Living In Fukushima Prefecture, Japan

Scanning for Radiation_Fukushima sheltersjapan-radiation-dog-eg_temp scan centre for residents nr Fuk plantScanning for Radiation_Fukushima shelters

Japanese experts have stated that Fukushima evacuees are not a threat to others. Kosuke Yamagishi of the medical department of the prefecture of Fukushima stated that ordinary people from the area are not dangerous unless they are employees of the Daiichi plant.

fukushima fear

Ichiro Yamaguchi, head of the Testing Station in Yamagata also confirmed regular evacuees are registering only low-levels of radiation. But the people are fearful, and it is this fear that is leading to discrimination against Fukushima residents.

 

An eight-year old child who lived 20 kms. from the nuclear site was refused entry into a Fukushima hospital and their appointment at the hospital had been cancelled as she had no non-radioactivity certification; her shocked father told Japan’s Mainichi newspaper.

However, officials at evacuation centres are sticking to their guns:

Rad_check_point‘All persons residing within a radius of 30 km around the plant must provide a certificate; If they do not, they must submit to an on-site detection. This is so that other evacuees feel safe.’

Tens of thousands have been forced to leave an area of a ​​20-km radius around the Fukushima Daiichi plant or being confined to their homes in an are of 10 kms further. “How can you stay at home if you have to go out to get drinking water?” asked Kumiko Kowata, 45, a homemaker, after the earthquake knocked out water supplies to her home. The exodus has also been spurred by private companies in towns near the plants who chartered buses to help their employees and families flee to the shelter in Yamagata, even as the government has played down the effects. Many believe that the situation at the plants was twice as bad as authorities and the government were admitting. “We might be overreacting, but we also know Tokyo Electric” — the plants’ operator — “is not telling us everything,” says Hitoshi Suzuki, a 34-year-old construction worker.

Munehiro Okamoto, 36, who works for a drug making company, led a convoy of four cars and 15 people, and one golden retriever, to Yamagata from Namei, a town right by the Fukushima Daiichi plant. He described a situation in which the parents feared that their children would get radiation sickness. He said the group would reach a city, stop, then fear that it was not far enough, and resume their journey westward. “We didn’t want to keep panicking and moving on and then stopping again,” he said.

Prime Minister adviser Kenichi Matsumoto, told the press that the region surrounding the Fukushima central plant could be uninhabitable for 10 or 20 years+. But if Fukushima Daiichi becomes another Three-Mile Island or Chernobyl then they may never go back. In the meantime, people are furious at being refused shelter and medical services on the assumption that they are contaminated.

Fukushima Daiichi chernobyl_openpit3-Mile Island