Fukushima Court Rules TEPCO, Government Liable Over 2011 Disaster

Tyler Durden's picture

Six years after a tsunami crashed into the Fukushima-Daiichi nuclear power plant, causing three of the plant’s seven reactors to melt down in the worst nuclear accident since Chernobyl, a Japanese district court in Fukushima prefecture ruled this week that Tokyo Electric Power and the Japanese government were liable for damages totaling about 500 million yen ($4.44 million) in the largest class action lawsuit brought over the 2011 nuclear disaster, Reuters reported citing local media sources. It was the third civil court ruling to find Tepco financially liable, and the second to produce an admission of wrongdoing from the inept utility.  

However, considering the billions of dollars in damage caused by the Fukushima Daiichi meltdown - not to mention the tens of thousands of lives that were disrupted - the judgment is hardly a victory. Especially considering Tepco has been roundly condemned for negligently failing to take the necessary precautions to prevent just such a disaster.

A group of about 3,800 people, mostly in Fukushima prefecture, filed the class action suit, marking the biggest number of plaintiffs out of about 30 similar class action lawsuits filed across Japan. This is the second ruling to hold the government responsible, following a Maebashi district court decision in March, Reuters reported.

The fact that Tepco has managed to largely avoid consequences for its botched handling of the disaster at Fukushima, from failing to anticipate the possibility that a natural disaster might severely damage the plants to allowing radioactive material to spill into the soil and the Pacific Ocean. And while the cleanup effort has become a top government priority ahead of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, the company’s engineers have had trouble locating the lost reactor cores inside the ruined reactors.  

Tepco notoriously waited months to disclose the true extent of the damage at Fukushima. Furthermore, the company admitted in 2013 that it had allowed more than 300 tons of contaminated wastewater to leak into the Pacific.

This year, as the Japanese government has cut off subsidies to Fukushima disaster victims, forcing the first of tens of thousands of displaced residents to return to their abandoned homes, Tepco has courted controversy by proposing to dump more radioactive wastewater into the Pacific, provoking outrage among local fishermen.  

The plaintiffs in Fukushima case have called on defendants for reinstating the levels of radioactivity at their homes before the disaster, but the court rejected the request, Kyodo said.

In an amusing twist, Tepco on Friday disclosed that Kobe Steel’s Shinko Metal Products unit supplied Tepco with piping for the Fukushima Dai-Ni nuclear power plant that didn’t meet specifications. Luckily, the piping was never used, and is currently sitting in a warehouse, Tepco said.

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Blue Steel 309's picture

In the Japanese context, doesn't this just mean their assets will be nationalized?

yomutti2's picture


Note the size of the award - $4.4 million dollars. Why bother suing for such a pittance??


serotonindumptruck's picture

Establishes legal precedent for future complaints.

Manthong's picture


That shouldn’t be a problem for them….

Japan has an island so loaded with Heidelbergs that it would tip over like Guam if they added any more.

Rapunzal's picture

They will print the money in a day, no problem.

GUS100CORRINA's picture

Title: Fukushima Court Rules TEPCO, Government Liable Over 2011 Disaster

Fukushima prefecture ruled this week that Tokyo Electric Power and the Japanese government were liable for damages totaling about 500 million yen ($4.44 million) in the largest class action lawsuit brought over the 2011 nuclear disaster.

My response: I thought we were talking about 10's of BILLIONS, not millions. Who is responsible for the polution in the Pacific Ocean, nobody??? How about all of the CANCER related deaths and damage to the local environment including the water table?

What a JOKE!!!!! Lawbreakers continue to be rewarded in every situation in every nation.

Manthong's picture

“Who is responsible for the pollution in the Pacific Ocean?”


It was  their consulting, engineering and sales (profit) that put nuclear pile containment vessels on the shoreline in an earthquake zone with a demonstrated historical susceptibility to catastrophic tsunamis.

.. not to mention suspending spent rod storage 100’ up in a building.


not dead yet's picture

The real cause of the problem was the emergency generators were located behind a sea wall down by the water and when they were flooded there was no juice to keep the pumps running to cool the reactors.. The Japanese government told them to relocate them to higher ground and farther inshore but TEPCO never did. Until they did the plant should have never been allowed to operate. Following the story at the time it was my impression that every step of the way scenarios were laid out to deal with the situation and every time Tepco picked the cheapest option not the best which ended in disaster everytime.

Lots of press about the "unsafe" reactors at Chernobyl but the real cause of the disaster was human. The reactor was to be shut down the next day and in the process they were going to do experiments on it. Rather than wait for the experienced dayshift operators the night man in charge took it upon himself to do these experiments. Experiments that required them to disable all the safety features that would have automatically shut down the reactor long before it went poof.

Manthong's picture

yeaj, well F everybody....

FuYu was still in an eathquake fault way back when.

But nips are not inportant to the keptracracy..

Oh... except if your beaches are not suited for human visitation anymoar..

Manthong's picture


I did not catch those details...


gigadeath's picture

The real cause was a thermonuclear bomb planted in the seabed by the Chikyu Maru and a dirty bomb planted in Fukushima by Magna BSP on 3/11/11 @11:00. 

Bigly's picture

Billions? Try quadrillions or more. IOW, something nobody will EVER repay.

Can you put a PRICE on our oceans?  This whole thing is laughable.

I am beginning to think at least 90% of people are too stupid to live. Stupid sheeple being led like cattle into whatever abattoir the elites want them.

Zero critical thinking. Zero.

NoPension's picture

The peanut gallery doesn't know a Heidleberg is a printing press.

Manthong's picture

Yes, thanks for that observation... and the rabble doesn’t understand the racist Guam poke either.

.. your government at work.........



Not Too Important's picture

Want to know how fucked the world really is, especially North America?

Get a geiger counter, preferably with a pancake tube, and start testing old car/truck air filters that haven't been replaced, the older the better. We all know a few people that haven't replaced their air filters for years.

Whatever you find is also in your lungs.

All the children's lungs, too. It kills the kids first.

Hug your loved ones, the incubation period is 15 years - 2026 - when cancer rates across the board skyrocket straight up, never to decline for billions of years.

1033eruth's picture

No kidding!!!  People get that if their feelings are hurt here in the US.  Class action, holy crap.  what is that going to be, a bowl of rice for every plaintiff?

CC Lemon's picture

Lawsuits are common like that in Japan. Long, drawn out, small payouts. I think it has to do with how the litigants need to pony up beforehand whether they win or lose. Not sure.

pawn's picture

TeaRS 4 NiPPoN

Cognitive Dissonance's picture

So what are the Japanese people going to do about this?

Probably the same thing we do when our courts find corruption and ineptitude in the US Gvt.....nothing.

bshirley1968's picture

And?  Who is going to do a fucking thing about it?  So a court "ruled",  big fucking deal.

Oh, I know, I know, let's fine them some money tgat the central bank printed for them......cause they probably won't print any more?

Oh, the cost!  Oh, the punishment!   What a load of shit.

IridiumRebel's picture

Million dollar fine oughtta do it

Implied Violins's picture

I would demand payments in uranium pellets.

Grandad Grumps's picture

How does one assess the liability of killing the Pacific Ocean?

And what about the nukes that created the tidal wave?

tmosley's picture

Way back when there was a government project to use nuclear weapons to induce tidal waves, so now every time there is a tidal wave the crazies claim it was nukes.

Ethelred the Unready's picture

Don't forget about Godzilla!   He was certainly busy that day.  

GunnerySgtHartman's picture

TEPCO and the Japanese government: more private profits and socialized losses.  When will people learn???

cynicalskeptic's picture

Sooooooo....... how many people put out of their homes?   how many people dying of cancer?   and a few core melt downs that have managed to kill off the Pacific Ocean......

$4.4 million!?!?!   WTF?

You think they'd at least demand the company execs disembowel themselves as well - out of pure embarassment if nothing else.

Yen Cross's picture

 Is Tony Hayward running "Tepco"?   Someone has a few screws loose?

Yen Cross's picture

 We pissed off a few douchebags from PBoJ? [BoJ]

 Your days are numbered Abe.

Anunnaki's picture

CEO of Tepco, Homer Simpson-San intends to appeal

fangulos's picture

Fuck japs, the best solution of fukushima is to wipe the whole area with hydrogen bombs, clean and swift, then us, russia and china could discuss rebuild upon that ruins

FoggyWorld's picture


This truly is a case where some of these people should end up in prison.  The lying and negligence will be part of our world for tens of thousands of years.

sauldaddy's picture

If they were being honest They would hold ISREAL responsible.

NEW INFO: Japan offered to enrich uranium for IRAN!


HERE ARE THE LINKS: Ynet news... Inside Japan News Network...The New American...Rianovosti news...Hindustan Times...Zee News




This report includes classified photos and the schematics for Fukushima, as well as the ORIGINAL seismic records to support it's claims.


They are,

1. Reactor 3 is completely missing, which means the press and anyone who has claimed anything about pressures, temperatures, containment, ect at reactor 3 after March 14 is lying and people need to pay attention to it, because failure of the public to realize the massive extent of the lies about what is going on there will leave the door open to a repeat event.


2. Reactor 4 is Building 7



oobilly's picture

3 reactors melted down. yup.

but nuclear energy is safe....just not when operated by humans.

Knave Dave's picture

Nuclear energy isn't safe anywhere. You think the sun is safe? It couldn't care less about being "safe." That is purely a human concern that the universe ignores entirely.

Siamo pazzi's picture

Indeed. It was an attack not accident ....

Knave Dave's picture



Rattle reactors all on one site with a couple of massive eight-point-pl;us earthquakes, severl seven-pointers and a thousand six-pointers, all of which disable their cooling systems so they over heat, then wash over theme with one of the biggest tsunamies ever observed by mankind, and then when they start to glow from overheating, flood them continually with corrosive salty icewater from the ocean ... and it is an aboslute given that they will all fail!

Nothing humans build could withstand all that, and the idiot "experts" who said the reactors could withstand that were always doing nothing but talking out of their own prejudice in favor of their own industry out 1) their belief in their own superhuman engeneering skills 2) typical human nonsense about "failsafe" engineering and themselves being indestructible. Idiots always thing their foolish practices will never bring anything bad to themselves: "It will never happen to us." Most common thing about normal human stupidity and foolishness.

Anunnaki's picture

Ithe CEO of Tepco should commit sepaku

Phillyguy's picture

This should also include GE

dlweld's picture

Yes, if the GE design Boiling Water Reactors (BWR) lose their cooling pumps for any period of time - the reactors blow up - baked in the design - and that's what happened at Fukushima. Back when these GE reactors were being designed several GE engineers resigned in protest over the implementation - an interesting story.

Aussiekiwi's picture

3800 people, $4.4million, a slap on the hand with a wet Bus ticket, that's not a win, that's a complete loss.

GotAFriendInBen's picture

4 million

They destroyed the Pacific ocean

el buitre's picture

True.  The judgment should be raised to US$10 million / sarc

quasi_verbatim's picture

When all human life on earth ends there will still be lawyers, litigating for the roaches.

Bigly's picture

Why not? That's their KIN.

blargg's picture

$4.4 million USD? That's not even 0.1% of the damage caused by this disaster.

SRV's picture

Not even pocket change... they should be up before the world court!

Hobbleknee's picture

"2001 - 2017 and continuing disaster"