Radiation Leaks Force Over 70,000 to Evacuate
Japan’s Tokyo Electric Power Company said it has pulled out 800 workers from the nuclear power facility due to safety concerns. Some 70,000 residents have been forced to evacuate their homes. Another 140,000 people have been ordered not to step outside. Low levels of radiation are now floating toward Tokyo. Earlier today, Japanese Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano issued a frank warning about the crisis.
Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano: *”There is no mistake that this is a level that can have an effect on humans. People within the area should not have contact with the air as much as possible, and I would like to ask people to stay indoors.”*
Thousands of Bodies Wash Up on Japan’s Shore
Japan is also dealing with a humanitarian crisis as millions of people in Japan’s devastated northeast are spending a fourth night without water, food or heating in near-freezing temperatures. Officials expect the death toll from Friday’s earthquake and tsunami to exceed 10,000. On Monday, more than 2,000 bodies washed up on the beaches of Miyagi Prefecture.
Germany Shuts Down Nuclear Reactors Following Japan Disaster
The nuclear crisis in Japan has sparked a debate over the future of nuclear energy across the globe. German Chancellor Angela Merkel has announced that the country’s seven nuclear reactors built before 1980 will be shut down for a three-month review of German plant safety. On Monday, Merkel suspended plans to extend the life of Germany’s 17 nuclear reactors.