Anti-Nuke Who’s Who Sadao Yamamoto: A Man Who Never Gives Up Nuke Info Tokyo No. 90
Anti-Nuke Who’s Who
Sadao Yamamoto: A Man Who Never Gives Up
by Shoji Kihara, (Group for No-Nukes Hiroshima)
Iwai-shima (Iwai Island) is the base location for citizens’ movement against Kaminoseki nuclear power plant, where the construction plan is underway at just 3 km from the Island. Sadao Yamamoto, the manager of Iwai-shima fishery co-operative and the representative of the Iwai-shima Islanders’ group against the construction of Kaminoseki nuclear power plant, was re-elected as an assembly of Kaminoseki town in February of this year for three consecutive year. He has played a central role for the movement against Kaminoseki nuclear power plant, both in name and reality.
Only his fishery co-operative, among eight other co-operatives affected by the construction of Kaminoseki nuclear plant, has refused to receive a compensation of their fishing activities from Chugoku Electric Company. Moreover, it filed a suit against the electric company and others for voiding a contract of the fishery compensation.
He was born in Iwai-shima in 1950 and raised on the Island until he was a junior high school student. Upon graduating the school, he left the Island to attend a high school and pursue a higher degree. After he graduated from Simane University located in the Sanin region (along the Inland Sea of Japan), he got a job at Matsue-city in Simane Prefecture. There is one Simane nuclear power plant owned by Chugoku Electric Company just 10 km from the city. Since then, he started to recognize nuclear issues.
The construction plan of the nuclear power plant at Kaminoseki town emerged in the fall of 1981. His strong feeling against a nuclear power plant in his hometown made him to return Iwai-shima. He was welcomed and offered an administrative work by Iwai-shima fishery co-operative.
His anti-nuke group, Iwaijima Islanders’ group against NPPs, is not limited to the opposition of nuclear power, but to include practical plans to boost the island’s economy without nuclear power by, for example, diffusing the island’s special products all over Japan.
Today, the group is actively working on planning to construct a ‘gathering place’ on the proposed nuclear power plant site as a ’20th anniversary project for anti-nuclear power plant movement in Kaminoseki’. Even just 3 month after the announcement of the plan, 5 million yen (about 650 million dollars) which can cover half of the construction cost, was contributed from all over the Japan. Currently, the island’s population is 700 and ninety percent of them are against nuclear power.
In last April when agency of natural resources and energy inquired of the governor of Yamuguchi prefecture about his opinion over the construction of Kaminoseki nuclear power plant, Mr. Yamato went on a seven days sit-down in front of the prefecture’s building. With this protest as a turning point, the movement against Kaminoseki nuclear plant expanded into a wide spread citizens’ movement.
Endless activities such as working for the fishery co-operative, pursuing political activities as an assembly, attending court trials, and hosting visitors to Iwai-shima from various countries, does not allow him to take a good rest in his everyday life. What he is looking forward to, however, is to take a time for reading a book or listening to music in his log-house erected on a loquat field, although busy schedule keeps him away from such a pastime.