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21 May 2012

Solar Eclipse seen in Tokyo

In the morning of May 21, Monday in Tokyo, from the balcony of my place, I saw beautiful solar eclipse. Of course I used sun glasses dedicated for this event.

sun eclipse

I did enjoy it. Once solar shading started, the whole view from the balcony got darker and the temperature got colder.

After a few minutes, the sun became like golden ring from what I saw through the glasses.

Thank you, God. It was in fact the most beautiful show I saw in my life.

 

This show was actually seen not only in Japan but other parts of the world, California and Northern Texas.

The map and timetable is as follows.

http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/lanow/2012/05/solar-eclip...

 

Location

Start Partial Eclipse

Start Annular Eclipse

Max Eclipse

End Annular Eclipse

End Partial Eclipse

% of sun diameter covered

Hong Kong (AM)

5:08

6:06

6:08

6:10

7:16

94%

Taipei (AM)

5:07

6:10

6:10

6:11

7:23

94%

Tokyo (AM)

6:19

7:32

7:34

7:37

9:02

97%

Crescent City, CA (PM)

5:07

6:23

6:26

6:28

7:35

97%

Albuquerque, N.M.

6:29

7:33

7:35

7:38

8:36

97%

Redding, CA

5:11

6:26

6:28

6:30

7:36

96%

Zion National Park

6:23

7:31

7:34

7:36

8:37

96%

Lubbock, Texas

7:31

8:33

8:36

8:38

9:34

96%

Lake Tahoe

5:15

6:29

6:31

6:32

7:37

95%

Chico

5:13

6:28

6:30

6:31

7:37

95%

Eureka

5:09

6:25

6:27

6:29

7:36

95%

Grand Canyon

5:25

6:33

6:35

6:37

7:38

94%

Yosemite Village

5:18

 

6:33

 

7:39

92%

Sacramento

5:15

 

6:31

 

7:38

92%

Las Vegas

5:23

 

6:35

 

7:39

92%

San Francisco

5:15

 

6:32

 

7:39

90%

Monterey

5:18

 

6:34

 

7:41

88%

Palm Springs

5:26

 

6:38

 

7:42

86%

Lancaster

5:24

 

6:37

 

7:42

86%

Downtown L.A.

5:24

 

6:38

 

7:42

85%

Malibu

5:24

 

6:38

 

7:42

85%

Griffith Observatory

5:24

 

6:38

 

7:42

85%

Burbank

5:24

 

6:38

 

7:42

85%

Woodland Hills

5:24

 

6:38

 

7:42

85%

Chatsworth

5:24

 

6:37

 

7:42

85%

Santa Monica

5:24

 

6:38

 

7:42

85%

Alhambra

5:24

 

6:38

 

7:42

85%

Arcadia

5:24

 

6:38

 

7:42

85%

Rowland Heights

5:25

 

6:38

 

7:42

85%

Ontario

5:25

 

6:38

 

7:42

85%

Anaheim

5:25

 

6:38

 

7:42

85%

Oxnard

5:25

 

6:38

 

7:42

85%

Long Beach

5:25

 

6:38

 

7:42

84%

Redondo Beach

5:25

 

6:38

 

7:42

84%

Palos Verdes

5:25

 

6:38

 

7:42

84%

Huntington Beach

5:25

 

6:38

 

7:42

84%

San Diego

5:27

 

6:39

 

7:43

83%

In fact, 18 years ago, when I was a college student in California, I tried to see it but it was a cloudy day so I couldn't see it.

Interesting thing is Japan has a legend of Sun Goddess. Japan is a nation of the Sun Goddess. That means I saw it in the nation of the Sun.

06 February 2012

Documentary film"The Cove" Good for brain training

I rented a DVD of the film which contains Japanese subtitles and censored faces for the release in Japan. The film won US film Academy Award for documentary. It is about dolphin loving westerners trying to save dolphins in the cove in Taiji town in Wakayama Prefecture in Japan.

This documentary is interesting one in the sense that anyone can learn that documentary shouldn't be produced in neutral stance, in other words it can be propaganda or be very biased.

To me, it was like brain training material. The film is based on the producers' emotional matters. The story is mainly narrated by Rick O'berry, a former dolphin trainer for the famous TV show "Flipper." He felt guilty of using dolphins for entertainment. Since then he started activity to protect dolphins. He even had broken the law to do that. In this film he trespassed to capture dolphin hunting scenes.

I list up things agreeable and disagreeable matters in the film.

  • Dolphins shouldn't be used for aquarium shows because they are put in stressful situation. 

Agree, in that sense we should treat them better. Maybe animals shouldn't be used as toys or entertainment like bull fighting in Spain or Rodeo in US.

  • Dolphins are as intelligent as human, so they shouldn't be killed and eaten.

Disagree. What is definition of "intelligence" they mean? Does that mean not intelligent creatures should be killed and eaten?  

  • Dolphin hunting is not Japanese culture but only local matter in the town. Most Japanese do not eat dolphin or whale meat. Cultural aspect can not be a reason for justifying dolphin hunting.

Disagree. Although dolphin hunting is only local culture in the town, it is their culture anyway. No foreigner or Japanese outside the town can interfere their activity. What they eat is their business. As long as the specie is not endangered, anyone can eat anything except human on the earth. I do not care Koreans eating dog meat though I don't and I think dogs are as intelligent as human.

The film featured some facts Japanese merely pay attention as follows.

  1. If people continue to fish in the oceans at current speed, the marine resource will all disappear in 40 years. Japan is the world's largest consumer of seafood.
  2. If you are arrested by the police, the police can detain you for 135 days until indictment is decided. If indicted, you are convicted at rate of 90%.
  3. Japan pays so much money to small nations to gain pro-whaling votes in IWC. Japan's intention is not economic one but very political, which is protesting western imperialism.
  4. IWC delegate from Japan says whaling is one way of pest control because they are eating smaller fish.
  5. Dolphins and whale meats sometimes contain very highly concentrated mercury inside and those are provided to school lunches for children. (Now we should be worried about radioactives.)

One thing I wondered was why Taiji town did not permit the documentary crews to videotape their hunting of dolphins, not letting them do that illegally. That way they can solve the problem. It is bloody and brutal but what is the problem? That is what humans do for survival. We do that to cows, pigs, birds and even to fruits and vegetables. Plants are living creatures. Even vegetarians cannot avoid such sin for survival.

Let's be logical, rational and realistic rather than emotional racist, imperialist or idiotic idealist.   

27 January 2012

Dear Japanese Government regarding Fukushima nuke crisis

Due to the nonconformities at Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station caused by Tohoku Earthquake and Tsunami on March 11, 2011,  Soil of Fukushima Prefecture was covered with a mass of radioactive substances which the effects on human body are not clarified completely yet..

 

Fukushima prefectural government and the Central Government took countermeasures quickly, including the designation of the areas within 20 km and 30 km respectively as a nationally specified evacuation area and a scheduled evacuation area, as well as a series of designations for evacuation according to the actual situation.

 

However, the standard for the scheduled evacuation area, as a basis of protection against radiation in Fukushima Prefecture, was set to 20 mSv/year, and the standard values specified so far for the evacuation areas were set to levels not always safe and very high for the children and the people who were to give birth to, and bring up children.

 

In the matter of radiation, the effects on human body are not clarified. In the event of accident that has occurred at the nuclear power plant in Chernobyl, former Soviet Union, people were evacuated by force from areas exceeding the radiation level of annual 5 mSv. Causal relationship was not demonstrated at the results of investigations by a research institute consigned by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology. It is said, however, that there are significant differences, in the incidence rates of cancers and leukemia, over the border line of 10 mSv/year between the people who were exposed to low doses of radiation continuously and those not exposed to such radiation.

 

It is requested that "Crisis management capability" at Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station controlled by Tokyo Electric Power Co., Inc. (TEPCO) be investigated thoroughly. We are persuaded by neither the TEPCO's instructions to enforce things nor the explanations by Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency. Standard values for foods are also higher in Japan than the "Standard values" ruled under the influence of radioactivity after the accident at Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant. What will become of Japanese diet several years later if no corrective action is taken? What is wanted now is "Safe foods." It is essential, before anything, to install the standard values even severer than the temporary standard values ruled in the event of Chernobyl Accident.  

Standards values must be tightened as soon as possible to protect the safety of children. For 1 month or more, at least, in summer vacation, winter vacation and spring vacation, "children, pregnant women, etc. must be evacuated to areas of low environmental radioactivity to recover their health." Please note children are indispensable to support future.

 

Therefore, we hope the Central Government learns cases in the past, and implements the following measures quickly to ensure the safety of the children living in Fukushima Prefecture and the ease-of-mind of their parents.

 

Create the environment quickly for the Children to easily evacuate by setting up standards for young people whose 4 times ( 2 times for Elementary school kids) more sensitive than adult for current radioactive standards, 20mSv/Year, set up in planned evacuation area.

Provide more support for self-evacuee who resides outside of 30Km areas, for the purpose of maintaining children’s safety from the risk of radioactive threat. 

There is a necessity to spread the word to residents of Fukushima that radioactive exists certain risks to their life. To do so, possible demand dismissal of current advisor, Mr. Shunichi Yamashita and select highly knowledgeable advisor to remind residents of Fukushima to give necessary awareness of crisis management.

For further conducted health monitoring, Country will overall support based on the premise of protecting all residents of Fukushima. This monitoring will conduct thyroid gland echo to contribute early detection of thyroid cancer, most threatening disease influenced by radioactivity, urine testing, and blood testing to all ages of residents of Fukushima. For monitoring, setup checkup organization by third party.

To set standards and to disclose information swiftly regarding radioactive protection, Set up unified decision making organization beyond the border of existed government agency. System should be able to adopt international standards, as well as Japanese standards  .

Influences of massive radioactive not only for Japan but also for the world from Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear plant which under the supervision of Tokyo Electric Power Company(TEPCO) is way beyond immeasurable. TEPCO must pay compensation for damages to all workers (not only in Fukushima) who are engaged in farming/breeding/fisheries.

 It’s beyond imaginable to think that current situations are stable enough for policy to lift the evacuation area. There is massive radiation fell to the ground, contaminate the land and no place for kids to play outside. We have to replace all of contaminated soil.

Government and TEPCO must buy up lands within the range of 30km radius areas from Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant, set up restricted area, build interim storage facilities, and disclose all information to citizens and residents of Fukushima. At the same time, set up an independent panel to discuss regarding the way of communications for disabilities. 

 

Simulate the nuclear power plant again, think about the way how to make sufficient disclosure of information so as to prevent the similar accidents from happening again, and make efforts to avoid that citizens and residents struggle for decontamination on the streets.

Fukushima governor neglected accurate and adequate information dissemination for Fukushima residents including even disabled people, resulting in exposition to radiation of many people.  He also neglects the measure for voluntary evacuation.  He and Fukushima government are required to pay the burden charge which is used by citizens for evacuation purpose

We urge Fukushima government to apologize to all Fukushima citizens through TV and newspapers for the following reasons:

 / Not to disclose any information on SPEEDI simulation although it already come on March 11 from the national government.

/Not to disclose any information on stable iodine although written instructions are obtained before that.     Fukushima citizens, not knowing anything, only waited for water-supply wagon and gasoline.

After governor Satoh declared the safety of Fukushima rice, many people bought rice made in Fukushima prefecture.  However, radioactive material exceeding the national standard was found later, driving many farmers into the plight.  In order to support their livelihoods, we urge Fukushima government, TEPCO and national government to carry out reparations based on the revenue of each farmhouse in the last fiscal year.

In the caution zone, many animals are left behind and are not rescued yet.  It is plausible that they be rescued by volunteer organization.  Animals have also rights to live, to become happy and to eat as we humans have.Should their rescue efforts end on 27th?  The notion that it is unavoidable in a watch zone will be 'unconstitutional'.Only the governor can give the permit.  In order to save their lives, 'please give us the permit to save them.

30 December 2011

2011 is a nuke year

The biggest news this year is muti-meltdown of Fukushima Nuclear Power Plants caused by magnitude 9.0 earthquake. Massive radiation was released out of the plants.

A lot people died by the earthquake and tsunami, but damage by the nuclear accident will go on for a long time. Since March 11, bad news continued endlessly. Every day is like living in hell. It is said the nuclear power plants is now stabilized but no one knows how nuclear reactor is like at this point. It will take years to just know actual situation. To fix and clean-up it will take decades.

 

I went to Fukushima prefecture to join clean-up efforts.

nuclear power

I joined anti-nuke demonstration march in Tokyo. I watched nuclear related documentary films and read books on nuclear power generation. 

nuclear power

In Tokyo, a big political movement is collecting signatures to call for the referendum for demanding the government to halt nuclear power generation. I am one of signature collectors.

The activists set up the tents in the government building district to show the will to protest nuclear power. The Japanese government is considering lowering dependency of nuclear power generation but still approves exporting nuclear power technology overseas.

 

We have to raise voice to change things better, not counting on politicians or beaucrats any more. That is what I learned this year.

 

I hope 2012 will be opening of new energy era such as solar power, wind power, micro-hydrogen, and so on. Of course I know it is not a very easy thing to do.