The Atomic Age II symposium was quite an eye opener on how expansive the effects of radiation are to the human body and the environment. It’s important to be cognitive about this subject on a daily basis and to understand what the long term effects are going to be on us if we are constantly being exposed to radiation on some level or another.
One thing that stuck in my head throughout the symposium is at what level are we willing to go to cut corners because of financial needs/gains when concerned with training, equipment, etc. I inquired about the clean up employees and asked if they are receiving the proper training and top-notch safety equipment to prevent them from receiving any kind of exposure to radiation.
What is quite disturbing is the method in which TEPCO hires its clean up workers. TEPCO hires low level, temporary employees to do their dirty work. These employees were given non-suitable and unsafe equipment that made it impossible to communicate as well as not fitting properly.
It’s quite upsetting, indeed, but I think we all need to feel assurd and confident that we make nuclear energy a thing of the past and not a foundation for solutions on energy consumption looking into the future. I can only imagine the day when all nuclear power–and even nuclear weapons cease to exist. What a wonderful day that would be–indeed!
It truly was a fabulous conference–and I took away a wealth of information.