Andrea Germanos writes at Common Dreams:
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Japanese officials raised the level of acceptable radiation doses for evacuees of the Fukushima nuclear disaster to avoid increasing costs for compensation, Japan’s Asahi Shimbun reported on Saturday.
A 5-millisieverts per year dose, the same level of exposure used as a yardstick to relocate residents after the Chernobyl nuclear disaster, was proposed at an unofficial meeting of ministers in October of 2011, seven months after the disaster began, they report.
But just weeks later, the yardstick was upped to 20 millisieverts per year.
… at a meeting on Oct. 28, joined by Chief Cabinet Secretary Osamu Fujimura and Tatsuo Kawabata, internal affairs minister, participants appeared reluctant to approve a yardstick other than 20 millisieverts. […]
“The prefectural government could not function with population drain under the 5-millisievert scenario,” said a state minister who attended the meeting. “In addition, there were concerns that more compensation money will be needed, with an increase in the number of evacuees.” […]
The Abe administration in March decided to release by the end of this year a set of protection measures for evacuees returning to areas with doses of up to 20 millisieverts.