Publicatie Laka-bibliotheek:
Official Report of the Fukushima Accident Independent Investigation Commission. Excecutive Summary

AuteurNational Diet of Japan
Classificatie (JAPAN - FUKUSHIMA (Dai’ichi ongeluk))

Uit de publicatie:

The official report of
The Fukushima Nuclear Accident Independent Investigation Commission
The National Diet of Japan
Executive summary

Message from the Chairman
THE EARTHQUAKE AND TSUNAMI of March 11, 2011 were natural disasters of a magnitude
that shocked the entire world. Although triggered by these cataclysmic events, the subsequent
accident at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant cannot be regarded as a natural
disaster. It was a profoundly manmade disaster – that could and should have been foreseen
and prevented. And its effects could have been mitigated by a more effective human response.
How could such an accident occur in Japan, a nation that takes such great pride in its global
reputation for excellence in engineering and technology? This Commission believes the
Japanese people – and the global community – deserve a full, honest and transparent answer
to this question.
Our report catalogues a multitude of errors and willful negligence that left the Fukushima
plant unprepared for the events of March 11. And it examines serious deficiencies in the
response to the accident by TEPCO, regulators and the government.
For all the extensive detail it provides, what this report cannot fully convey – especially to
a global audience – is the mindset that supported the negligence behind this disaster.
What must be admitted – very painfully – is that this was a disaster “Made in Japan.”
Its fundamental causes are to be found in the ingrained conventions of Japanese culture:
our reflexive obedience; our reluctance to question authority; our devotion to ‘sticking with
the program’; our groupism; and our insularity.
Had other Japanese been in the shoes of those who bear responsibility for this accident,
the result may well have been the same.
Following the 1970s “oil shocks,” Japan accelerated the development of nuclear power in
an effort to achieve national energy security. As such, it was embraced as a policy goal by
government and business alike, and pursued with the same single-minded determination
that drove Japan’s postwar economic miracle.
With such a powerful mandate, nuclear power became an unstoppable force, immune to
scrutiny by civil society. Its regulation was entrusted to the same government bureaucracy
responsible for its promotion. At a time when Japan’s self-confidence was soaring, a tightly
knit elite with enormous financial resources had diminishing regard for anything ‘not
invented here.’
This conceit was reinforced by the collective mindset of Japanese bureaucracy, by which
the first duty of any individual bureaucrat is to defend the interests of his organization.
Carried to an extreme, this led bureaucrats to put organizational interests ahead of their
paramount duty to protect public safety.
Only by grasping this mindset can one understand how Japan’s nuclear industry managed
to avoid absorbing the critical lessons learned from Three Mile Island and Chernobyl; and how
it became accepted practice to resist regulatory pressure and cover up small-scale accidents.
It was this mindset that led to the disaster at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Plant.
This report singles out numerous individuals and organizations for harsh criticism, but the
goal is not—and should not be—to lay blame. The goal must be to learn from this disaster,
and reflect deeply on its fundamental causes, in order to ensure that it is never repeated.
Many of the lessons relate to policies and procedures, but the most important is one upon
which each and every Japanese citizen should reflect very deeply.
The consequences of negligence at Fukushima stand out as catastrophic, but the mindset
that supported it can be found across Japan. In recognizing that fact, each of us should reflect
on our responsibility as individuals in a democratic society.
As the first investigative commission to be empowered by the legislature and independent of
the bureaucracy, we hope this initiative can contribute to the development of Japan’s civil society.
Above all, we have endeavored to produce a report that meets the highest standard of
transparency. The people of Fukushima, the people of Japan and the global community
deserve nothing less.
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