A documentary that recently began screening chronicles the experiences of Japanese communities hosting nuclear facilities and the high price paid by some of them because of the March 2011 Fukushima meltdown disaster, including farmers and fishermen unable to market their produce because of radioactive contamination.
“I hope I can show that we can’t coexist with nuclear power and it is the duty of each of us to make a choice about energy in the future,” said Kei Shimada, director of “Fukushima, Rokkasho and Message to the Future.” Its first screening took place Saturday in Tokyo.
One of the people in the documentary is Kazuo Nakamura, a 14th-generation farmer in Koriyama, Fukushima Prefecture, who has had to keep his harvested rice in a storehouse as consumers nationwide shun Fukushima rice after radioactive materials turned up in samples.
Joining an antinuclear demonstration in Tokyo as well as drawing attention to his plight at civic meetings, Nakamura said he is determined to maintain his way of life despite the hardships.
“I will continue farming even if I have to abandon my crops,” he said. “And now I believe it is our duty” to get rid of nuclear facilities, he added, because they “will definitely cause harmful effects to our descendents.”
In Rokkasho, Eisaku Takiguchi continues to catch Pacific cod with his son despite cesium contamination in order to document the catches he could have made. Their silent chagrin is evident as they are shown throwing the fish back into the ocean from their vessel.
Takiguchi, as a young fisherman, led a protest movement against the construction of the nuclear fuel cycle facilities. Decades later, he now says: “I’m still proud of our campaign. I can walk the street with my head held high.”
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