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Japan at Nature's EdgeThe Environmental Context of a Global Power$
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Ian Jared Miller, Julia Adeney Thomas, and Brett L. Walker

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780824836924

Published to Hawaii Scholarship Online: November 2016

DOI: 10.21313/hawaii/9780824836924.001.0001

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Postcrisis Japanese Nuclear Policy

Postcrisis Japanese Nuclear Policy

From Top-down Directives to Bottom-up Activism

Chapter:
(p.280) 14 Postcrisis Japanese Nuclear Policy
Source:
Japan at Nature's Edge
Author(s):

Daniel P. Aldrich

Publisher:
University of Hawai'i Press
DOI:10.21313/hawaii/9780824836924.003.0014

This chapter examines Japan's nuclear policy after the Fukushima nuclear disaster, with particular emphasis on the fifty-year history of the interplay between top-down directives and grassroots activism. It begins with a discussion of the Japanese population's development of a social condition known as kaku arerugi, or nuclear allergy, along with Japan's top-down policy. It argues that the triple disaster of 3/11 may topple the pronuclear iron triangle of government officials, local politicians, and business interests. It considers how citizens are taking scientific measurements, organizing large-scale protests, and articulating new energy and health priorities in the wake of the crisis. It also tackles two questions that remain unanswered: first, whether Japanese people and businesses are willing to bear the costs and suffer the externalities of nonnuclear energy sources in the future, and second, whether these alternative sources of energy will result in less harm to the environment.

Keywords:   nuclear policy, Fukushima nuclear disaster, top-down directives, grassroots activism, Japan, kaku arerugi, nuclear allergy, non-nuclear energy sources

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