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Over a year after the earthquake, tsunami, and subsequent nuclear meltdown at the Fukushima Daihatsu power plant, the Fukushima Nuclear Accident Independent Investigation Commission, created by the Japanese parliament investigate the disaster, has released its official report.
The no holds barred report begins with an introduction from the chairman of the commission, who states that the whole incident “could and should have been foreseen and prevented.”
They hold that everything was attributable to negligence on the parts of the government, regulating bodies, and Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO), who were responsible for the operation of the nuclear power plant.
Nearly all in charge became lazy, letting down their guard and allowing sloppy errors to occur. The report suggests that TEPCO managed to bully the government into ignoring all but the most basic of regulations with regards to the operation of the Fukushima site.
However the report does not actually lay the blame at the individuals in charge, but rather at the whole Japanese culture and society itself. The unquestioning nature, and automatic obedience of rules, along with a devotion to follow set plans, led to a scenario where everyone just blindly followed a path that they could see had the potential to end in disaster.
An excerpt from the report reads:
"What must be admitted--very painfully--is that this was a disaster "Made in Japan." Its fundamental causes are to be found in the ingrained conventions of Japanese culture: our reflexive obedience; our reluctance to question authority; our devotion to 'sticking with the program'; our groupism; and our insularity. Had other Japanese been in the shoes of those who bear responsibility for this accident, the result may well have been the same."
By. Charles Kennedy of Oilprice.com
Charles is a writer for Oilprice.com