Fred Pearce: What was the fallout from Fukushima? When a tsunami hit the nuclear plant, thousands fled. Many never returned – but has the radiation risk been exaggerated? Yamashita believes that policy is too cautious. He argued right after the disaster for a threshold of 100 millisieverts a year. “People could have been returning after a month, when the iodine had disappeared,” he says now. He believes the psychological risks of staying away have long exceeded the radiological risks of returning. Many doctors I spoke to quietly agreed with him. But in truth most evacuees do not want to go back. They don’t trust the experts and, anyway, they got compensation and have new lives elsewhere. A year ago, Namie, an evacuated town close to the plant, was declared safe, but so far only a few hundred of its 20,000 former residents have returned. In the empty lands around Fukushima today, most of the radiation is long since gone. But the ghosts linger.
Observer 3rd June 2018 read more »
Ian Fairlie 7th July 2015 (accessed) 5th June 2018 read more »
BMJ 20th Oct 2015 (accessed) 5th June 2018 read more »