A month ago, Chiho Kaneko spoke about her recent visit to Fukushima. Through her stories and photos it was easy to connect with the lives of the people she met.
Particularly moving was the story of a woman who had left a teaching job to start a sustainable community in a town 30 miles from the reactor. Her home, pictured here, could have been mine. She looked out her windows, surrounded by nature … but after March 11, 2011 she could not hang her clothes outside. She could no longer grow her own food. She could not even burn wood in her wood stove, for fear of releasing radiation.
“After the disaster at the Fukushima Daiichi power plant, winds blew radioactive contamination directly towards Namie for three days, exposing its citizens to high levels of radiation. No one was warned.” [Greenpeace]. “… Mayor Baba had to organize the evacuation himself, and no one warned him or his citizens that their evacuation route would prove identical to the direction the radioactive cloud would take as it spread. The citizens of Namie fled — and the radiation followed. For four days in March, they found themselves precisely at the spot where the most radioactive fallout landed. Namie’s residents now live scattered across 44 of Japan’s 47 prefectures. ” [Speigel]. Families from Namie have relocated four to seven times since March 2011.
------- Voices of Fukushima