Japan has looked over the cliff, jumped, hit a few boulders bulging out and are deciding not to release their parachute. But why? Why would Japan decide to go nuclear after the disaster in Fukushima?
Th United States has interest in maintaining nuclear power in Japan because without it, additional nuclear power in the United States may cease to exist. According to simplyinfo.org, an agreement was reached in April to continue the cliff diving process:
An agreement started in April of 2012 by the US and Japan as the Japan-U.S. civilian nuclear cooperation pact outlines cooperation between the two countries on not just proliferation and the decommissioning of Fukushima Daiichi. It also spells out an ongoing cooperative effort in nuclear power technology and related programs. The US bound Japan into an agreement to continue their civilian nuclear power program. In a Japanese embassy document it cites Mr. Daniel Poneman as being involved in the first meeting of the committee of this pact.
If Japan scraps nuclear energy, it will leave the United States without options and the sector will effectively be dead. The major companies that exist are not based in the US and without Japan’s involvement they will likely pursue other energy solutions, much like Siemens was forced to do when Germany turned the lights off on nuclear.
The US gently hints at this in an Asahi Shimbun article from early September.
The interconnected nature of the nuclear energy industry has led the United States, Britain and France in recent days to express their concerns to government officials. Those nations are closely linked to Japan in both the construction of nuclear power plants and the recycling of nuclear fuel.
Despite a Japanese population that overwhelmingly opposed nuclear energy, it is back and disaster almost seems inevitable. The ties to the past, where the United States once dropped nuclear bombs on Japan, are more binding than ever. The United States has helped put the proverbial gun to Japans head, an Island without options when another earthquake strikes.
It all falls back on the system of international commerce, where the United States must leverage export programs in Vietnam, South Korea and India. If Japan did not go nuclear, these countries would look to China and Russia, which would be an enormous power grab.
The US is unable to restart its own domestic fast breeder program because of opposition, costs, risks and considerable proliferation risks. Now the United States is dictating that Japan’s phase out would create the proliferation risks. Does this sound backwards to anyone else?
Nobel Laureate Kenzaburo Oe placed blame squarely on the US for the sudden reversal of the Japanese government in a speech last week. It appears he is quite correct that the US used undue influence and this new 2012 nuclear agreement, to press Japan into keeping their nuclear programs even as the majority of people in Japan want it all to end. The Japanese people again shoulder all the risk associated with this plan.
The need by the US for Japan to keep a nuclear power program may be one more of desperation than domination. Without Japan’s nuclear power program the US program would likely fall apart.
The continuation for outdated and dangerous policies in the name of power is the latest in disturbing trends with governments domestically and abroad. The contradictions in nuclear power, rising sea levels (due to global warming, which is pushed by governments globally) and recent catastrophes due to predictable natural disasters is a complete breach of trust. The last of the nuclear cards are being dealt and this is proof that even epic meltdowns will not reverse the trend towards the pursuit of economic dominance.