Meeting survivors of the 2011 earthquake and tsunami disaster, which triggered meltdowns at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant, visiting Pope Francis urged caution in Tokyo on Monday regarding decisions that could affect future generations, particularly concerning the use of energy.
The pope did not directly call for the abolition of nuclear power plants, but he did note that Japanese bishops have called for the “immediate abolition” of such plants since the triple meltdowns in Fukushima.
“Our age is tempted to make technological progress the measure of human progress,” he said. “So it is important to pause and reflect on who we are … and who we want to be.
“Important decisions will have to be made about the use of natural resources, and future energy sources in particular,” he stressed.
The pontiff, who arrived Saturday on a four-day tour in what is the first papal visit to Japan in 38 years, listened to kindergarten teacher Toshito Kato, Buddhist priest Tokuun Tanaka and Matsuki Kamoshita, who was eight years old when she and her family were evacuated to Tokyo following the Fukushima disaster. All three are survivors of the 2011 disasters.