The “Global Conference for a Nuclear Power Free World” was held in Yokohama on 14 and 15 January 2012. More than 6000 people on the first, and 5500 on the second day, including 100 international participants from over 30 countries, gathered at the conference.
The entire conference was broadcasted live over the internet, with an audience of approximately 100,000. At the closing of the conference, the "Yokohama Declaration for a Nuclear Power Free World" was announced. It demands:
1) the protection of the rights of those affected by the Fukushima nuclear power plant accident;
2) Responsibility of the Japanese Government and the Tokyo Electric Power Company (Tepco);
3) Minimization of residents' exposure to radiation;
4) A global road map for the phase out of the nuclear fuel cycle and the decommissioning of all nuclear power plants;
5) Currently closed Japanese nuclear power plants to not be reopened;
6) The prohibition of export of nuclear power plants and components, especially to industrializing nations; and
7) It emphasis of the role of local and municipal authorities; and declares to develop a global network to support Fukushima. It also calls for actions to be taken throughout the world on 11 March 2012.
The diverse proposals for action made by conference participants are being gathered on a web site entitled the "Forest of Action for a Nuclear Power Free World". These many proposals include a range of levels, from recommendations to governments to suggestions of what individuals can do, and this web site provides a forum to develop to concrete future actions.
Eight current and former mayors, including two from Fukushima, joined the Mayors' Forum which was held as a special session at the conference. Here, it was decided to form a network of mayors to work to break free from nuclear power, and announced that a preparatory meeting for this network will be held in late February 2012. The Yokohama Declaration supports this proposal, and calls for citizens' support of this initiative.
The conference was coordinated by an Organizing Committee comprised of six Japanese NGOs, with Peace Boat as Secretariat. Many other organizations also cooperated in the coordination of programs throughout, and the conference was supported by a great number of endorsing organizations and corporations, and supporting organizations. More than 100 groups also held self-organized events at the conference, including around 20 organizations from Fukushima, and several international groups including WISE. A further characteristic of the conference was a diverse range of participatory workshops and opportunities for exchange, including in the Fukushima Room and children's programs.
The international guests visited the Fukushima town and region with a one-day bus tour. They spoke with farmers, civil servants of the City of Fukushima and villagers who have been evacuated out of the 20 kilometer zone to live in just a few miles out of this zone. One thing was made very clear to the foreign guests; the disaster is not over! Thousands of people still live in highly contaminated areas, the economy of the whole region has collapsed and thousands of families are disrupted because quite often children are evacuated to family far away while the adults stay in Fukushima to protect their houses and fight with national authorities and Tepco over compensation issues.
More information: http://www.npfree.jp/english.html