March 18, 2012

Plans for a One Year Fukushima Update Interview

Posted by Evelyn Mervine

Dad and I at my wedding in October 2011. Photo by Christine Watters Photography.

About a year ago I interviewed my father, a nuclear expert, about the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear power plant disaster in Japan. We conducted twenty interviews during the month that followed the Tohoku earthquake.

Over the past few months, we have attempted (and failed) to do a follow-up interview. We also started putting together a book of all of the interviews. Originally, my idea was to put the book on Lulu and donate a portion of the profits to Japan disaster relief. Well, life caught up with us– a busy second career in my dad’s case, and the final year of graduate school in my case. So, I apologize that we never lived up to our prior promises of  follow-up interviews and the book.

However, we have decided that within the next week we are going to conduct an interview titled “Fukushima: One Year Later.” We weren’t able to record this interview for the exact anniversary of the start of the Fukushima disaster, but we are going to be within the window of when we conducted our original interviews one year ago. So, stay tuned for this interview, which I will post here in about a week.

In order to make this interview interactive, we thought we would again take questions from the general public. So, if you have a question for my dad about Fukushima, post a comment below and/or send an email to georneysblog at gmail.

Here are a few questions I plan to ask my dad:

-What is the current state of the Fukushima reactors? Are they safe? What still needs to be done in order for long-term shut-down to occur at Fukushima?

-I read in the news that Japan had shut down all of their nuclear reactors. Is this true? If that’s true, where is Japan’s power coming from? Will all nuclear reactors in Japan be shut down forever?

-How has the Fukushima disaster influenced nuclear policies in the United States?

If you have any more questions to add to the above, please send them in!

Finally, I will do my best to compile all of the interviews into a book sometime this summer. I’ll be done with my PhD and taking a few months off. I have to work on some scientific publications, but there should (finally) be time for me to put the book together. So, you can look for the book in a few months. If anyone would like to volunteer to do some transcription or copyediting, that would be wonderful. Just let me know. I’ll try to offer both an ebook and print version, and I will make the cost as inexpensive as possible.

***Note: If you haven’t yet listened to the Fukushima interviews, you can find them all on my vimeo channel. The explanation posts (many of which have transcripts) are available on AGU here (though I think the embedded vimeo files are missing due to a technical transfer glitch) and on my old blogspot here. ***