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A speaker from Japan struck close to home 

San Luis Obispo

Last week, I had the privilege of hearing the personal story of Chieko Shiina, a resident of Fukishima, Japan, at an event sponsored by S.L.O. Mothers for Peace. Like many of us living here on the Central Coast, Ms. Shiina had a beautiful home where she grew her own food and enjoyed a good life. She told of how this way of life and her future has now changed forever as a result of the nuclear disaster.

She wept as she expressed her frustration at how her government has misled and ignored the concerns of those affected and about her work now as a concerned citizen and mother who is trying to make people aware of the problems associated with the continued use of nuclear power. Hearing her speak reminds me that it’s foolish to think there is a “safe” way to prepare in the event of a natural disaster, should one occur here on the Central Coast.

We all use the electricity that is produced by Diablo, and it provides a living for many people. What would it look like to close the plant and shift to an energy source that would not cause catastrophe in the event of a natural disaster? Can we consider and create a solution that won’t cause irreversible physical harm to ourselves and our environment? I believe we can and must if we hope to have a future. There are viable solutions. More information is available at the website nirs.org.

Thank you, S.L.O. Mothers for Peace, and thank you, Cheiko Shiina, for bringing this important subject to our attention.

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