Lest anyone doubt who is responsible for the disaster at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan just discarded the uncritical routine and said plant owner TEPCO’s low standards “invited the current situation.” — PZS

Los Angeles Times:

Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan for the first time criticized the TEPCO, which owns the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, for inadequate preparations for a tsunami at the facility. The sea wall at the plant was designed to withstand an 18-foot wave, while the actual tsunami that struck after the magnitude 9 Tohoku earthquake was estimated to be more than 40 feet high.

“It’s undeniable their assumptions about tsunamis were greatly mistaken,” Kan said Tuesday of Tokyo Electric Power Co. in an address to the Japanese parliament. “The fact that their standards were too low invited the current situation.”

Kan also criticized the company for placing the backup diesel generators, which were to provide power to the emergency cooling system, in the basements of reactor buildings, where they were swamped by seawater and disabled.

Read more

Wait, before you go…

If you're reading this, you probably already know that non-profit, independent journalism is under threat worldwide. Independent news sites are overshadowed by larger heavily funded mainstream media that inundate us with hype and noise that barely scratch the surface.  We believe that our readers deserve to know the full story. Truthdig writers bravely dig beneath the headlines to give you thought-provoking, investigative reporting and analysis that tells you what’s really happening and who’s rolling up their sleeves to do something about it.

Like you, we believe a well-informed public that doesn’t have blind faith in the status quo can help change the world. Your contribution of as little as $5 monthly or $35 annually will make you a groundbreaking member and lays the foundation of our work.

Support Truthdig