6 Mars 2016
出版物 - 2016-03-04
Ecological Impacts of the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Accident 5 years Later
The report is based on a large body of independent scientific research in impacted areas in the Fukushima region, as well as investigations by Greenpeace radiation specialists over the past five years. It exposes deeply flawed assumptions by the International Atomic Energy Agency and the Abe government in terms of both decontamination and ecosystem risks. It further draws on research on the environmental impact of the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear catastrophe as an indication of the potential future for contaminated areas in Japan.
The environmental impacts of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster will last decades to centuries, due to man-made, long-lived radioactive elements are absorbed into the living tissues of plants and animals and being recycled through food webs, and carried downstream to the Pacific Ocean by typhoons, snowmelt, and flooding.
Greenpeace has conducted 25 radiological investigations in Fukushima since March 2011. In 2015, it focused on the contamination of forested mountains in Iitate district, northwest of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant. Both Greenpeace and independent research have shown the movement of radioactivity from contaminated mountain watersheds, which can then enter coastal ecosystems. The Abukuma, one of Japan’s largest rivers which flows largely through Fukushima prefecture, is projected to discharge 111 TBq of 137Cs and 44 TBq of 134Cs, in the 100 years after the accident.
Five years after the start of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear
accident, it is clear that the environmental consequences
are complex and extensive. Due to the radionuclides
released by the accident, and their incorporation into
the materials cycle of ecosystems, the impacts of the
disaster will last for decades and centuries. However,
the understanding of the full scale of the Fukushima
disaster for the natural environment is only its early
phase, highlighting the need for continued and expanded
independent research into the multiple ecological effects.
Clearly, some early impacts are already being seen:
internal tissue contamination in forest plants and trees
resulting in caesium translocation in bark, sapwood, and
heartwood; high concentrations in new leaves, and at least
in the case of cedar – pollen; apparent increases in growth
mutations of fir trees with rising radiation levels; heritable
mutations in pale blue grass butterfly populations; DNA-
damaged worms in highly contaminated areas; high levels
of caesium contamination in commercially important
freshwater fish; apparent reduced fertility in barn swallows;
and radiological contamination of one of the most
important ecosystems – coastal estuaries.
With the history of the Chernobyl and Kyshtym
radiological disasters as a guide, we can expect further
serious consequences for flora and fauna of Fukushima-
contaminated terrestrial and freshwater aquatic
Further, the vast stocks of radiation in the forests will
be a perennial source of radiological downstream
contamination, including high radiocaesium inputs into
coastal and marine ecosystems, for the foreseeable future.
Greenpeace fully supports the dedicated efforts of
independent scientists working to better understand
the impacts of this man-made nuclear disaster on
the ecosystems of Fukushima. It is their work and
investigations, inexcusably under resourced, that will help
the people of Japan grasp the scale of the environmental
And the people of Fukushima, who have lost so much
to TEPCO’s nuclear disaster, deserve to have accurate
and complete information so that they may face the
decisions ahead with clarity and knowledge. This report is
dedicated to them, as they have and continue to face the
enormous challenges wrought by this nuclear disaster with
resiliency, hope, and courage.