I’m writing book reviews for Kumamoto Nichinichi Shimbun (Kumamoto Daily News). This time I’m introducing a new book by Shin Yamaaki, who is the chief of W-WAN, a subgroup of WAN, and also a planning member of the Nuclear Free Now conference held in Tokyo and Koriyama at the end of 2012. At the conference she co-organized the “Make Your Everyday Ambiguous Dissatisfaction into Political Issues” project with Greenpeace.
“People Who Will Not Let Nuclear Plants Be Built
--- From Iwaishima To the Future ---“
Written by Shin Yamaaki
(Iwanami Shoten, 21/12/2012)
Book Review: “People Who Will Not Let Nuclear Plants Be Built”
30 Years since the Building Plan --- A Document of Resistance of Iwaishima
I knew that there were 54 nuclear plants in Japan. Since the first plant was built in Tokaimura village, Japan’s nuclear plants have increased at a pace of two plants a year, but their actual building sites are limited to the 17 places that were chosen in the 1970s. In the other 30 places which the authorities picked out as potential locations after that period, no nuclear plants have ever been built. The reason is because the local people resisted and held out. This is what I learned from reading this book. I also learned why there are places like Fukushima and Tsuruga, where a string of plants are located and therefore called “Genpatsu [=Nuke] Ginza,” and how the government’s grant system works -- one more plant means one more pile of subsidy money and the locals tend to get addicted to it. All these revelations opened my eyes to the reality.
The author Yamaaki is a freelance writer, who wrote the book “A Test of Local Autonomy -- 13 Years in a Proxy War Against Nuclear Power for the Citizens of Suzu City, Noto Peninsula,” (Katsura Shobo) [Buy this book: jump to an Amazon page] In this book Yamaaki closely covers the protest campaigns of the Suzu citizens who refused to allow the building of a nuclear power plant. She was awarded the Matsui Yayori Journalist Award and the Arai Namiko Award for the book.
(appeared first in Kumamoto Nichinichi Shimbun, January 6, 2013)
Translated by A. Tawara