The Nippon Sei Ko Kai (NSKK) – the Anglican Communion in Japan – is to host an International Forum for a Nuclear-Free World. The forum will be held in Sendai, with field-work in Fukushima – scene of the March 2011 disaster in which a massive earthquake and tsunami caused a number of explosions in the town’s coastal nuclear power station, leading to widespread radioactive contamination with serious health and environmental effects.
Every diocese in the NSKK is participating in the conference, and representatives from Anglican Communion provinces with strong ties to Japan are also sending representatives: this includes people from South Korea, the Philippines, Taiwan, the US, Canada, and the UK. “All are united in the hope for a world free from nuclear hazards and threats”, the NSKK’s Executive Committee said in a statement.
“Already, eight years have passed since that fateful day in March 2011 when a massive earthquake and tsunami struck Japan, devastating numerous communities in the north-eastern part of the country”, the statement said. “Today, rebuilding work continues in many of those communities, allowing residents to return and reclaim their hometowns.
“As members of the Executive Committee of the International Forum for a Nuclear-Free World, we are deeply grateful for all the aid and assistance provided by so many to facilitate this. The Anglican Communion in Japan has also been active, helping and walking together with those affected by the disaster.”
In 2012, the NSKK’s General Synod adopted a resolution – “In search of a world free of nuclear power – Stance of the Anglican Communion in Japan on nuclear power” – in which they called for an end to nuclear power. Since then, the Church has initiated a number of activities to realise its objective. Next year’s international conference is one such initiative. It was called for at the Church’s 2018 General Synod.
During the Forum, which will run from 27 to 31 May 2019, participants will visit the vicinity of the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant, and hear a keynote lecture from Professor Miranda Schreurs, a key figure in the German government’s shift to free the country of nuclear power. Through discussion and the sharing of ideas and expertise, the participants will talk about “specific action they can initiate together to create a nuclear-free world.”
The executive committee statement said: “We earnestly hope this Forum will launch major, lasting initiatives across national and other borders for ‘a world free from nuclear power!’”