Thursday, 19 October, 2017

Radioactive wild boars have taken over two Japanese towns

SASEBO Japan- Commander U.S. Fleet Activities Sasebo community members gathered to commemorate the 2011 Great Tohoku Earthquake victims Radioactive boars in Fukushima thwart residents' plans to return home
Juana Turner | 12 March, 2017, 00:35

In Japan, however, hundreds of toxic, radioactive wild boar have been rummaging across northern Japan, where the Fukushima nuclear power plant disaster occurred in 2011.

Sakamoto said: 'Wild boars in this town are not scared of people these days'.

Wild radioactive boars have been caught running around the deserted town and have even attacked people.

Housing subsidies for so-called "voluntary evacuees", who fled the Fukushima nuclear disaster from areas other than the designated evacuation zones, will be terminated this month, increasing the financial strain on those who wish to remain outside their hometowns amid lingering concerns over radiation levels.

Since April a year ago, over 300 boars have been killed.

The media has compared the situation with the region surrounding Chernobyl, Ukraine.

More than 120,000 people remain displaced after fleeing their hometowns in the three northeastern prefectures hardest-hit by the massive quake, tsunami and subsequent nuclear meltdown, as Japan marked the sixth anniversary of the natural disaster on Saturday. But it's not yet certain that humans will win back the territory.

"The work to probe inside the containment vessels and remove the fuel debris will be extremely tough because of the high radiation levels", said Hiroshi Miyano, who heads a panel of the Atomic Energy Society of Japan, which is discussing ways to decommission the Fukushima plant and making recommendations to the government.

However, not all residents will be returning.

Now those returning to the town of Namie are anxious about the nuclear-infected pigs, which have been know to attack humans, according to media reports. Now reproducing with reckless abandon, the wild boar population has jumped 300 per cent since the disaster, reaching an estimated 13,000 individuals.

Reports state that teams of hunters have been dispatched to cull the boars from the towns of Namie and Tomioka.

Disposing of boar bodies is also an issue: In Nihonmatsu, space is already running out after the city buried 1,800 boar carcasses in several mass graves, while the city of Soma has installed incinerators created to filter out radioactive elements. Burning the bodies is tricky, since the levels of radioactivity means that only special facilities can handle the task, according to Smithsonian Magazine. And when they do return they'll also have to face up to wild boars that have taken up residence since humans moved away.

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