Two Japanese professors arrived on Tinian on Nov. 2, 2022, to meet with members of the Pacific Alliance of Municipal Councils, who launched an online petition protesting the discharging of nuclear fallout cleanup waste water from Fukushima, Japan into the Pacific Ocean.
Dr. Seichiro Takemine of Meisei University and Dr. Hiroko Takahashi of Hana University, Japan, were interested in finding out the plans and goals of PAMC and assist in networking with other organizations and groups in Japan and to bring this issue into the global arena.
The petition can be accessed at https://www.change.org/p/no-to-nuclear-waste-dumping- into-the-pacific-ocean.
In the meeting, PAMC vice president Juanita Masga Mendiola shared that the alliance’s ultimate goal is to bring this matter to the attention of the United Nation. While the PAMC members are realistic that they may not achieve such a goal, the incidental goal of bringing awareness of the potential threat to the environment and people’s lives may be greater than the scientists’ findings.
Mendiola went on to say that there is no scientific method to study future pollutants impacting environmental conditions that may negatively interact with the remaining contaminants—no matter how miniscule— in the nuclear wastewater and that, in and of itself, is the greatest threat to all living beings on earth.
“It is enough that climate change due to pollution output hasn’t been fully addressed by world leaders. We need to push forth and prevent this from happening as this is not only a Japanese or Pacific Islanders’ issue. There are nuclear energy plants in other countries and permitting Japan to do this will more likely than not end up a normal practice in other countries. We need to make sure that those who aren’t born yet don’t ever get to that point,” Mendiola added.
The two professors brought letters of introduction and invitation for online meetings from groups and organizations who have heard of the petition and they hope that each member of the Tinian and Northern Marianas leadership will send a message or join the meetings.
They also recommended that going through the United Nations’ Human Rights Council may be the best way to route this issue to the UN General Assembly.
Besides Mendiola, other members of the PAMC are president Jim Atalig, secretary/treasurer Jonovan Lizama, and William Taitano of the Rota Municipal Council; Ana Demapan Castro, Antonia Tudela, and Daniel Aquino of the Saipan & Northern Islands Municipal Council; and Joseph E. Santos and Thomas P. Mendiola of the Tinian & Aguiguan Municipal Council. (PR)