Post-Crisis Japanese Nuclear Policy: From Top-Down Directives to Bottom-Up Activism
Daniel P. Aldrich
January 10, 2012
Asia Pacific Issues Working Paper No. 103
Over the past fifty years, Japan has developed one of the most advanced commercial nuclear power programs in the world. This is largely due to the government’s broad repertoire of policy instruments that have helped further its nuclear power goals. These top-down directives have resulted in the construction of 54 plants and at least the appearance of widespread support for nuclear power. By the 1990s, however, this carefully cultivated public support was beginning to break apart. And following the earthquake and tsunami of March 2011 and resulting nuclear crisis in the Fukushima nuclear complex, the political and social landscape for energy in Japan has been dramatically altered. The crisis has raised and reinforced environmental concerns and health fears, as well as skepticism about information from government and corporate sources. A civil society that for decades has appeared weak and nonpartcipatory has awakened and citizens are carrying out bottom-up responses to the accident, effecting change with grassroots science and activism.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 12
Keywords: Tohoku earthquake, tsunami, Japan, nuclear disaster, civil society, recoveryAccepted Paper Series
Date posted: January 11, 2012
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