Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Japan's Ministry of Health to Get Rid of Annual Radiation Limit for Nuclear Plant Workers

The normal limit of 50 milli-sieverts per year is to be eliminated, but 5-year total of 100 milli-sieverts limit remains.

If the limit is eliminated, the workers who will have been exposed to the radiation of more than 50 milli-sieverts but less than 100 milli-sieverts at Fukushima I Nuke Plant will still be able to work at other nuke plants, as long as 5-year total remains under 100 milli-sieverts.

Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare is for the nuclear industry's health, labor and welfare. Of course, the argument is that unless these workers are able to maintain the power plants (there are 17 of them, with 54 reactors, according to this site), everybody's health, labor, and welfare will be threatened.

From Mainichi Shinbun (3:09AM JST 2/28/2011):

被ばく線量:年50ミリシーベルト 上限撤廃検討…厚労省

Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare is considering eliminating the annual radiation exposure limit of 50 milli-sieverts


On April 27, Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare started to discuss the elimination of the annual radiation exposure limit of 50 milli-sieverts for nuclear plant workers during a normal operation [as opposed to an emergency situation like Fukushima I], while keeping the 5-year limit of 100 milli-sieverts. The nuclear plant workers from all over Japan have been sent to Fukushima I Nuclear Power Plant, and there is a concern expressed by the nuclear industry that there won't be enough workers to do the maintenance work at other nuclear power plants if the current annual limit is kept.


As to the emergency radiation exposure limit, Ministry of Health already raised the 100 milli-sieverts per year limit to 250 milli-sieverts last month, specifically for the work related to Fukushima I Nuclear Power Plant accident.


Anonymous said...

Robbie001 sez:

Hey well at least TEPCO has figured out where they can get a bunch of temporary workers. It is rumored they are going to solicit the Burakumin with job offers through yakuza recruiters.

"What is clear is that the contract laborers are routinely exposed to the highest level of radiation: in 2009 according to NISA, of those who received a dose between 5 and 10 millisieverts (mSv), there were 671 contract laborers against 36 regular employees. Those who received between 10 and 15 mSv were comprised of 220 contract laborers and 2 regular workers, while 35 contract workers and no regular workers were exposed to a dose between 15 and 20 mSv."

Anonymous said...

Robbie001 sez:

This mini-documentary "Nuclear Ginza" doesn't bode well for the current crop of workers or the world for that matter. This 9 min. video has stories from workers who were "safely" exposed to radiation and then ignored when health issues cropped up. Like I said in an earlier post the lack of dosimetery early in the crisis is going to make it hard for workers to claim damages because they won't be able to prove their exposure in court.

Anonymous said...

Robbie001 sez:

Here's a full copy of the documentary "Nuclear Ginza". You better watch it before they take it down. I wonder if the Ministry of Truth will try to block it?

Remember these Burakumin stories aren't from Fukushima their stories are when nuclear power is running "properly".

Anonymous said...

Robbie001 sez:

According to this article there is only 70,000 people in Japan that could even work at nuclear power plants. Chernobyl took 100,000's of people just to "stabilize" and today they are still begging the world for money just to cover over the mess. 25 years later they still don't have a roadmap for an actual cleanup plan for Chernobyl.

"The ministry, however, is expected to maintain the 100-millisievert rule, as there is medical evidence that exposure to radiation exceeding 100 millisieverts could increase the risk of developing leukemia and cancer, according to the sources.

The move comes as many nuclear workers are being sent to deal with the emergency situation at the radiation-leaking Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, although there are only 70,000 people nationwide who can engage in work at such plants.

"As workers would not be able to work at other plants once they exceed their radiation dose limit by dealing with the Fukushima crisis, the industry ministry has been calling on the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare to ease the limit to prevent a possible shortage of such workers."

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