Facebook

Twitter

Tumblr

iTunes

RSS

HEAR THIS HOUR'S UPDATE
News Pages

Entries in Plant (2)

Monday
Jun132011

Bunny Without Ears Found Near Japanese Nuclear Plant

File photo. Digital Vision/Thinkstock(TOKYO) -- A newborn bunny has been discovered without ears in Namie City, Japan, just outside the 18-mile exclusion zone around the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant.

Though scientists say there's no evidence the rabbit's defect was caused by radioactivity, it has become a symbol of people's fears of radiation after the Fukushima plant was damaged by the 9.0-magnitude earthquake and tsunami in March.

The rabbit was found in May by 56-year-old Yuko Sugimoto.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Friday
May062011

Japan Wants Another Nuclear Plant Closed over Quake Fears

Sankei via Getty Images(TOKYO) -- Japan urged a power company Friday to temporarily shut down operations at another nuclear plant that straddles a major fault line for fear it would not survive a major earthquake and tsunami.

Prime Minister Naoto Kan said during a news conference that he requested the suspension of reactors at the Hamaoka nuclear plant over safety concerns, citing a study that said there was an 87 percent chance of a magnitude 8.0 earthquake striking central Japan within the next 30 years.

The Hamaoka plant is located in Shizuoka, 155 miles west of Tokyo, and sits on an active earthquake fault. Officials estimate the shutdown could last two years.

With the plant supplying energy to about 16 million people in central Japan, a shutdown is sure to further strain the country's power supply, already hurting as a result of the crippled Fukushima reactors. Hamaoka powers regions that include Aichi, home to Toyota Motor Corp headquarters.

"I've made this request out consideration for the safety of the Japanese people," Kan said. "If there were to be a serious accident at the Hamaoka power plant, it would have a catastrophic impact on all of Japan."

The government asked plant operator Chubu Electric Power Co. to suspend two running reactors and a third already shut for a regular inspection. The request came one day after Economy, Trade, and Industry Minister Banri Kaieda visited the plant and raised concerns about the facility's safety measures. After reviewing Hamaoka's quake and tsunami drills, Kaieda suggested anti-disaster measures in place were insufficient.

The inspection of Hamaoka and all of Japan's 54 nuclear plants was prompted by the disaster at the troubled Fukushima Daichi nuclear plant following the March 11 earthquake and tsunami. The one-two punch crippled reactors along Japan's northeast coast, triggered hydrogen explosions, and radiation leaks in the world's second-worst nuclear crisis.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio