Eating Fukushima

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Some floating lantern ceremony

by Ed M. Koziarski
North Avenue Magazine
Jan. 28, 2012

When does a victim become a perpetrator? That’s the question that kept coming up as we made our way across the irradiated landscape.

Many foreigners fled Japan after the tsunami triggered a meltdown at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant last March. My wife Junko Kajino and I went the opposite way, spending five months inside the U.S.-declared 50-mile no-go radius for our in-progress documentary Uncanny Terrain.

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Sugeno fights for his Fukushima farm

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Seiju Sugeno is an organic farmer in Towa, Nihonmatsu, 50 km from the failed Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant. The Abukuma Mountains partly shielded his rice fields from contamination, but runoff is an ongoing threat. Chairman of the Fukushima Organic Farmers Network, Sugeno works aggressively to clean his land and prevent his crops from absorbing radioactive cesium. He will work to reduce the contamination year by year, rigorously testing his yield and reporting any contamination he finds. His 23-year-old daughter Mizuho works with him. He hopes she can build a sustainable life for herself here.

Uncanny Terrain is a documentary about organic farmers facing Japan’s nuclear crisis, and an online community fostering dialogue on food safety, sustainable agriculture, alternative energy and disaster response. Please keep the conversation going by making a tax-deductible donation.

Safecast Radiation Monitoring Seminar

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At Tokyo Hacker Space on 6/24/11, members of the NGO Safecast present the goals, methods, and results of their ongoing volunteer project to independently measure and map contamination levels from the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant fallout at hundreds of thousands of sites across Japan.

Uncanny Terrain is a documentary about organic farmers facing Japan’s nuclear crisis, and an international online community fostering dialogue on food safety, sustainable agriculture, alternative energy and disaster response. Please keep the conversation going by making a tax-deductible donation.

Remembering Hiroshima bombing after Fukushima disaster

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On Aug. 6 we attended the 66th anniversary of the world’s first nuclear attack in Hiroshima, with Yuji Ohashi, a Fukushima City bread company owner who is committed to rebuilding Fukushima in the face of the nuclear fallout.

But Steven Leeper, the first non-Japanese chairman of the Hiroshima Peace Culture Foundation, says Fukushima’s recovery will be much harder than Hiroshima’s was. He’s hopeful that in light of the Fukushima crisis, Japan might overcome the nuclear industry’s dominance of its national politics and lead an international movement for a future free of nuclear weapons and nuclear power.

Uncanny Terrain is a documentary about organic farmers facing Japan’s nuclear crisis, and an online community fostering international dialogue about food safety, sustainable agriculture, alternative energy, and disaster response. Please keep the conversation going by making a tax-deductible donation.

Hiroshima, Soma, Nihonmatsu and Fukushima City

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Yoshizawa gets his radiation results and partial compensation

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