Power and power plants are controversial issues worldwide. Can we have
them safely? Will having one mean nuclear weapons will be produced? Are
all nuclear power plants run according to Homer Simpson's Springfield plant's
safety rules? These and other questions would promote debate for at least
half an hour.
Broadcast in 1993/1994 in Japan
The government-owned nuclear fuel company (PNC) distributed the video to prepare the Japanese public for the start-up of the plutonium-fueled Monju prototype breeder reactor in the Fukui prefecture. It was in response to the overwhelming protests against the building of the reactor.
The nuclear reactor started in 1993. Not long afterwards, in 1995, a major accident happened at the reactor that could have been worse than Chenobyl. A sodium leak and a fire occurred and ran for 5 hours as panicked workers could not find anyone to give them emergency instructions, confirming what many Japanese citizens had feared. While this accident was brought under control, several workers were affected and toxic fumes were released into the atmosphere. The Monju safety procedures were woefully inadequate and the construction of the reactor, and the systems in place, will do nothing to protect people from lethal quantities of radiation if an even worse accident happens. And it won’t just be the people of Fukui who suffer if radioactive material is released. Shiga, Nagano, Fukushima as well as Lake Biwa (where 8 million people get their drinking water from) will be affected.
Green Action, based in Kyoto, is assisting the people of Japan in lobbying
the government to close down the reactor permanently.