It is hard to understand all of the dimensions and implications of the tsunami, earthquake and, at least, partial meltdown that struck Japan on March 11. Comprehending it from the perspectives of nature, emotions, humanitarianism, geography, global warming, nuclear devastation and common sense is off the charts.
The tsunami caused by the earthquake alone has caused incredible suffering and the loss of many thousands of lives. Homes have been destroyed, businesses, lifestyles, family units, property… If this was the extent of the damage, it would have been an horrible tragedy.
Unfortunately, it set off another wave of terrible events starting with the cooling system failure and ensuing explosions at the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear plant. This caused the astronomical release of radioactive material into the atmosphere. Radiation has been detected in Tokyo’s drinking water, milk supply and vegetables making them unsafe to consume. It has been detected in beans in Taiwan. As of today, radioiodine-131 has been detected in Massachusetts, California, Washington, Florida, Pennsylvania and North and South Carolina.
The disaster continues to unfold as Yukiya Amano, director general of the International Atomic Energy Agency and the world’s chief nuclear inspector, cautioned that the nuclear emergency could go on for weeks, if not months more. See http://tinyurl.com/nuclear-disaster.
Although there are very polarized points of view on the subject, some experts say that one of the possible consequences of global warming is increased earthquake activity. If this is the case one can see the spiraling effect this is having on the environment. One natural disaster (the earthquake) led to another (the tsunami) and caused the nuclear disaster. The nuclear disaster never should have occurred because nuclear energy is not a sustainable answer to our energy problems and should not be utilized.
Regardless of what New York State officials say concerning its safety, the Indian Point Nuclear Facility is only 38 miles north of New York City and it is built on a fault line. What happened in Japan could easily happen here.
We need to use renewable green power solutions as much as possible and get two monkeys off our backs — nuclear energy and the use of fossil fuels.