2017年3月11日12日 双葉大熊ダイアログセミナーご報告 Report of Futaba-Ohkuma Dialogue Seminar on 11-12 March 2017

1日目(3月11日)/ First Day (11 March)

  On the first day, we visited around Futaba Town guided by local residents. Currently, most area of Futaba Town is designated as Difficult-to-Return Zone and restricted to enter. This time we have obtained approval from Futaba Town with local residents' support so we were able to visit home and neighborhood.

  Through a screening site, first of all, we were guided to a resident's house in Hosoya District, located in 1.5 km northwest from TEPCO Fukushima Daiichi NPP.
TEPCO Fukushima Daiichi NPP is seen in the distance.
  Getting off the bus, the guide allowed to take photos within the premises. I asked him where is the boundary and he replied: "From the net over there to the greenhouse far away there". In short, he owns a large area approximately within the sight there.

  He told a story of the day the accident occurred, remembering that he had not been well conscious how the NPP is located such close until the accident occurred.

  Then, he explained the situation in his garden, comparing to a photo which he had prepared to show how the garden was used to be, well-arranged, before the accident.
The photo had been taken in the garden on his daughter's coming-of-age ceremony. The same place has been gone to ruin.
  In his house, it was so littered and strewn, hard to imagine it had been a living place. At first sight, I thought it was just left untouched after the earthquake had scattered stuff, but it was not: After the evacuation, animals like wild boars had broken the doors open for foods and they had messed up having no trace left.

  He told that he had built the house with his own attentive selection of materials, visiting each site of source one by one.

  When the accident had occurred, he was just going to retire and cede the estate to his son’s family, dreaming of an easy life. He had lost everything built up in his life thus far, he told that he once had become depressed, incapable of drinking liquor even though he had loved to, and sometimes he imagined committing suicide. However, seeing his grandchild began to crawl who was just a newborn baby when the disaster happened, he said he noticed that he should not die. He repeated several times that he should go forward now.

  At the adjacent to the main house, there was a large barn, suggesting he was an eager farmer.

  The premises of the house is in the planned area of an intermediate storage facility, and it is said that the house is destinated to be demolished soon.

  In the afternoon, we were guided to San-aza District. At first, we visited Mesaku Kannon Temple. It is said festivals had been held here before the disaster. Around the temple, it was mowed and cleaned for this day by the members of TEPCO Fukushima Revitalization Headquarters Futaba Town group. Thanks to them, we were able to visit there smoothly.

  There is a public cemetery on the opposite side of the temple. The day we visited there was the anniversary day of the earthquake, so there were some people visiting graves.

  Then we visited Maeda and San-aza community centers.

  In the community centers, many things, e.g. kinds of honorary certificates and drums which had used on activities, were left as they were, indicating the community events had been actively held. Once a year, on occasion of Hatsu-Uma (February the seventh on the traditional calendar), it is said that festivals had been held by the people in the community.

  In the precincts of Maeda Inari Shrine, Maeda-no-Osugi (the great cedar of Maeda) proudly stands on the ground, being over one thousand years old. It is said this is the oldest cedar in Hamadori.

  On the way back, we passed in front of the planned site of Special Reconstruction Hub just next to Futaba station. It seems the planned site has been decontaminated and well-developed. However, besides here, it was observed that many houses damaged by the earthquake were almost collapsed aggravated by deterioration.

2日目(3月12日)/ Second Day (12 March)

  On the second day, we had the Dialogue at the playroom of Aozora Nursery School in Naraha Town.

  This nursery school has reopened from this April and children are back. Through the courtesy of them, we could use the venue just before the reopening.

  In the morning, we looked back on the tour on the previous day introducing some photos, then presentations were held by attendees.

  At first, a presentation on the general situation of Futaba Town was given from Recovery Promotion Section of Futaba Town, on how the situation developed from the beginning of the disaster, and the reconstruction plan in the future.

  Although not listed on the program, then Mr Yoichi Ohashi, who is the headman of Hosoya District, told his experience after the disaster. Following his story on his hardship, he concluded his speech mentioning that his ancestors had overcome difficulties migrating for Futaba from Niigata while the Great Famine of Tenmei and Tenpo in Edo period, so he told he believes we also can overcome this hardship.

  Subsequently, Dr Hiroko Yoshida at Tohoku University presented about dose measurements in Ohkuma and Futaba Town. She told her experience on the one-by-one measurement of the individual houses (so far 101 houses) in the evacuation area.
  After a coffee break, Mr Koji Monma from Land Owners Association of 30-year Intermediate Storage Facilities explained about the activities of the association.
  In the next, Ms Yaeko Hangai from Futaba Town presented about Onna-Housai Odori, a traditional dance of Futaba Town. In the beginning of the presentation, a video of the dance was shown, and its humorous actions aroused laughter in the venue. She told that she had thought there is no chance to succeed the dance after the disaster, but people around encouraged her since it is so important to succeed the dance for Futaba, so she is keeping up the dance even the community is torn asunder to each place of refuge. However, she also told that it is a major worry how to succeed the dance to the younger generation in the future.

  The final presentation in the morning was held by Mr Takashi Chigira, the headman of San-aza District, about the life in San-aza with an introductory video took on the Hatsu-Uma festival and on the community-wide gardening event.

  In the afternoon, presenters of the morning sessions and some other participants held a Dialogue sitting around a round table.

  They commonly narrated that they had become depressed for a few years after the disaster, being at a loss as to what to do. More than one people told they thought to commit suicide. They told, however, even in such situations, each one discovers clues to move forward up to today, finding some kind of chance and supports from people around. For instance, by actively planning gatherings in each place of refuge, some positive voices were heard that they should not keep themselves to be evacuees forever. Even so, at the same time, words of love for hometown were frequently heard. It can be known how they are trying to be positive in their new living places, still keeping strong sympathyfor their hometown.

  Hosoya District of Futaba Town, where this time we have visited, is going to accommodate an intermediate storage facility, so this issue also arose repeatedly. It was found that the construction of the intermediate storage facility deepens the split between the people whose land is assigned to the facility and the others, and also it creates further mental burden from the negotiation with Ministry of the Environment and so on. Many said that they are not against for that, on the other hand, some told that he won't sign up unless he himself is convinced. A detailed episode was also narrated that how the land, which is one's own and is designated to the facility site, had been acquired by his parents with great efforts.

  In the Q&A session, a French attendee raised his question. "Now I know that the construction of the intermediate storage facilities is bringing further burden for whom be suffered from the disaster. Since you already have had a hard time being suffered, did not you consider an option that to build the facilities in other places?" It was a very impressive moment to see the every attendee around the table strongly nodded hearing that question, seems that having complex thoughts that they are not that against necessarily, however still not convinced.

  About the tour around Futaba Town on the first day, there was also a voice that has wanted to come to visit in such a way and want to come more and more.

  Besides, there were words which left an impression from an attendee from Iitate Village, who we invited to sit at the Dialogue table and also to join the tour around Futaba Town: "This time, I came join here to confirm that where our flexible containers will eventually go to."

  Lastly, Dr Claire Cousins, the chair of ICRP, expressed her gratitude for receiving the visit tour and told her impression on the discussion held at the Dialogue. We well learned that how she hearkened carefully to the tone of the Dialogue, from her respect for the people facing up squarely with great efforts to the difficult situation that had been in front of them and still stubbornly is.

  On behalf of the organizing committee, Ando also made a closing remark.

  We think that holding this Futaba-Ohkuma Dialogue was a major turning point along with the Dialogues held so far. The Dialogues have been held through the relationship of mutual trust between the stakeholders. We believe that the intrinsic value of the Dialogue has been raised not by gathering attendees and holding a perfunctory meeting, but by creating further links of the relationships based on the mutual trust. On the other hand, in the past, the Dialogue seminar had been supported mainly by, in a sense, top-runners of the rehabilitation of Fukushima, who helped themselves earlier than others after the disaster. The place to assist the people further who strongly supports Fukushima rehabilitation by taking root on their own ground; this has been the Dialogue seminar so far held.

  As same as it has been, the Dialogue this time we held was based on the relationships of mutual trust built by Dr Yoshida at Tohoku University, and we could link them together. On the other hand, the most area of Futaba and Ohkuma Town is designated as Difficult-to-Return Zone, and many people in this area are involved with the intermediate storage facilities. Such situations create a foggy atmosphere for the people there. Still, here are people who are studiously struggling to rebuild one's lifestyle, even confronting difficult realities. The rehabilitation is also just in the beginning phase that in the area where the evacuation order was lifted in this April. People in these areas are, in a sense, slow-starters of the rehabilitation.

  The Dialogue we held this time was the one that to pass batons from top-runners to slow-starters of the rehabilitation, being a small but also a major step forward.

  The rehabilitation process will take a long time in the future, for both in the area where the evacuation order has lifted and in the Difficult-to-Return Zone that having no prospect. We genuinely hope that the Dialogue seminar continues to relay the baton of the trust and to assist not only top-runners but also slow-starters of the rehabilitation.

  We believe this time was the most prominent moment showing the value of the continuous relay of the Dialogue seminar, which is the place where people gather who sincerely listen to the voices of the people in the affected area.

  Finally, we would like to express our sincere gratitude to Nippon Foundation, which has given continuous warm support for us even while assistances are becoming feeble after six years have passed since the disaster, not only as the organizing committee but also as a resident in the affected land of Fukushima.

  Furthermore, we cordially appreciate the help from the staff of Resident Life Section and Recovery Promotion Section of Futaba Town. We also offer our deepest thanks to Fukushima Medical University, and people from CEPN, IRSN, OECD/NEA and ICRP, coming so far from overseas every time.

Responsible for the article: Ryoko Ando

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