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Saturday, June 11, 2011

Three Months Ago

On March 11th 2011 a massive earthquake happened in Japan followed by an destructive tsunami. Until today, not all is recovered and still a lot of clean up work has to be done.
More than 90,000 people are still in shelters 3 months after the massive quake and 40% of clinics and hospitals have still major difficulties to rebuild their facilities. This is the same for the schools & kindergartens. If you look at NHK World News webpage you will see the survey that 77% of the population in Japan is not satisfied with the progress of reconstruction and in my opinion it is connected with the still remaining challenges which we are facing in Japan: political instability, weather conditions (lots of rain), Fukushima is still not under control and the radiation fear did reach an area more in South yesterday: Shizuoka.

This all leads to change the mind set, in my opinion the only way forward: "change yourself"

In Shinjuku one - if not the largest - demonstration ever happened today. More than 20,000 people were on the street and protested against nuclear power. It is already a good way as the government is listening and they stopped all future plans on enlarging the number of nuclear power plants. The prime minister Kan will host a meeting about renewable energies and Japanese companies are exploring more than ever before in that area as well.

But honestly, it is only a small step. The more important is that we start acting more responsible and save more energy by ourselves. Japanese people started with it and I hope that it will continue.
You can see these posters of  "please save energy" everywhere at the train stations. You can hear people talking about it as the government asks to cut 15% of electricity usage during the summer months and companies are looking into new ways for daily work life of their employees (super cool business, less overtime, more shift work, etc.).

I think it is a new consciousness which this crisis has created. I really hope that this is only the start point and a double point for other countries. The picture below shows exactly, what is important to understand: "Radioactivity has no Borders"

11 June 2011 - Demonstration at Shinjuku (taken by Stephan Schmidt)

It does not work if only Japan and Germany are changing their policy about nuclear power, and other countries build more nuclear power plants. We all have to change and we all have to start with ourselves: Save the Energy!

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