The Impact of the 2011 Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Accident on the Opinions About the Nuclear Power Plants Among the Victims of Great East Japan Earthquake

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The Impact of the 2011 Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Accident on the Opinions About the Nuclear Power Plants Among the Victims of Great East Japan Earthquake

Type: Master thesis
Title: The Impact of the 2011 Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Accident on the Opinions About the Nuclear Power Plants Among the Victims of Great East Japan Earthquake
Author: Zielinska, Olga
Issue Date: 2017-08-31
Keywords: Dual-process Theory
3/11 Disaster
Fukushima Daiichi
Studies on Opinions
Nuclear Energy in Japan
Abstract: The Great East Japan Earthquake and the following tsunami, which occurred on March 3rd, 2011, was a natural disaster of an unprecedented scale. One of its more severe aftermaths, the accident in Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station, remains unresolved until this day. Thousands of people were relocated due to the nuclear contamination, and the local communities were severed. This paper addresses the discussion about the further exploitation of nuclear power in Japan, which arose as a consequence of the nuclear accident. Although the Japanese government intends to continue relying on atomic energy, various statistics have shown the citizens’ objection. In this qualitative study, the representatives of three areas within Tohoku region were asked about their opinions towards nuclear power plants, and their arguments. The interviews were analyzed through the premises of socio-psychological dual-process theory, which explains how the opinions are constructed. One’s personal experience, perception of benefit or loss, and the trust towards the government and the energy companies proved to be the crucial factors for opinions’ construction. Moreover, the tragedy contributed to end the indifference of citizens, disappointed with the centralized government and its poor disaster response. The importance of the local authorities is increasing, and the close-knit societies are recovering faster. Lastly, the Japanese urgent need for alternative energy sources became visible, however currently there is no substitute capable of replacing nuclear power completely.
Supervisor: Herber, Dr. Erik
Faculty: Faculty of Humanities
Department: Asian Studies (120 EC) (Master)
Specialisation: Japanese Studies
ECTS Credits: 15
Handle: http://hdl.handle.net/1887/52259
 

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