The Fukushima Ministerial Conference on Nuclear Safety, Visits from Foreign Delegates


The “Fukushima Ministerial Conference on Nuclear Safety” is being held this weekend December 15 to 17th in Koriyama City in Fukushima Prefecture, hosted by the Japanese government and co-hosted by the IAEA.

It will be at the same time as the Lower House election.

The list of participating countries is extensive, and shows that they are trying to learn from the Fukushima nuclear accident.

In October, I was notified about the conference by some knowledgeable people abroad. They asked me, “You will take part in the conference right?” but I considered the position of the Japanese government and just nodded, “Hmmm.”

A month ago, a certain Diet member had asked a government official, “Aren’t you going to ask Dr. Kurokawa to participate in the conference?” and an official from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs visited me. The official seemed to be slightly uncomfortable, but after talking for a while it became clear that the government (meaning, the administrative branch of the government) had decided (did not think about it most likely or pressured somehow?) that “there was no reason for me to participate,”there was nothing for me to contribute to the program, and they did not consider me in the list of participants. There is no need for me to force anything, so I told the visitor 'Not to worry, I will not participate).

Actually, during these past two days, delegations from three countries have visited me separately. They praised the NAIIC report and wanted to learn and discuss more. They said they were able to deepen their understanding of each other, as well have a meaningful discussion regarding Japan’s role and future challenges.

In my previous entry, I pointed out that a comparison of the response of the U.S. and U.K. to the NAIIC report with Japan’s response indicates Japan’s delay in “true globalization” and the differences in ways of thinking.

Tomorrow is election day. Please vote no matter what. There are many parties and you may be unsure of who to choose, but you must carefully assess the qualities of each candidate. Your vote will move the democratic system, although it may not change right away.

Especially the young people, starting from this election, you must change your awareness and vote. For you are the ones who will build the future.

It will take time to make the democratic system work.