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Environment and Justice: The 2011 Japan Disasters - Essay Example

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Environmental disasters and their effect on different populations and communities all over the world have challenged environmentalists, social workers, governments, and NGOs recently by their complication and the massive destruction to the physical environment of the plane. The paper tells about: Governance, Environment, and Citizenship: The Response to the 2011 Japan Disasters. …
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Environment and Justice: The 2011 Japan Disasters
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Download file to see previous pages Despite the Tohoku calamity, remarkable successes are evident in these attempts, like tsunami infrastructure and warnings that remained strong in the face of extensive fires and explosions (Ratnapradipa et al., 2012). However, in spite of these successes, infrastructures sustained massive damages, with hazards to the health of the population. The homeless population increased tenfold. Relief efforts and humanitarian groups were hampered by the massive destruction to the transportation system; shelters experienced food and water shortages for days. In the past decade, Japan has put into effect policies and guidelines that made the nation highly prepared for natural disasters. Even though the number of fatalities from the earthquakes is high, most fatalities are because of the tsunami. Japan has adopted and implemented stronger building regulations (Ratnapradipa et al., 2012). Thus, Japanese buildings are expected to be more durable and tougher. But the response to the nuclear power plant disaster has been insufficient, revealing weaknesses in governance. The nuclear plant disaster is revealing the degree to which the major nuclear industry of Japan has been suffering from negligent or poor leadership and supervision, or worse. To begin with, the competence of the regulator becomes questionable in view of TEPCO’s—Tokyo Electric Power Company-- record of dishonesty. In evaluating the industry’s governance, it would be unjust to isolate a single company, when the whole industry was in fact incompetent (Kaufmann & Penciakova, 2011). Four years prior to the tsunami, the Japanese power industry and government were informed that nuclear power plants do not have the ability to endure massive earthquakes. But up to now, the...
Although the response of the Japanese government to the 2011 earthquake, tsunami, and nuclear fallout has been ambiguous and weak, it is not yet reasonable to conclude that the response has been completely ineffective. On several instances, Japan still has great successes, especially with regard to its efforts to rebuild and rectify environmental degradation caused by unjust social practices, which it could be proud of. It showed effective governance in the preparation for and response to the tsunami and earthquake. However, it appears that governance inadequacies overwhelmed the response of the government to the nuclear fallout. The absence of effective leadership and supervision and transparency within the government and TEPCO are of special importance as it risks weakening public trust. As the nation embarked on and continue with its rebuilding efforts, public confidence and cooperation will be the most critical instruments.
As regards the stability of nuclear power plants, determined and strong leadership within the government is now crucial to the mitigation of the disastrous accidents. Prompt and appropriate evaluation of the needs and demands of the communities and populations nearby the damaged nuclear power plant should be prioritized by the government, including assessment of relocation programs. The disaster preparedness and resilience of Japan gives out optimism, but strong leadership within the government alongside improved transparency will be similarly important. Ultimately, it is the unity among citizens and efforts to protect the environment that will powerfully determine the success of Japan’s rebuilding efforts. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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