Thursday, March 17, 2011

Episcopal Relief & Development sends support for Japan

From (no kidding) Disaster News-

Episcopal Relief & Development is sending support to the Nippon Sei Ko Kei (NSKK; the Anglican Communion in Japan) to help with its initial emergency relief efforts in response to the 9.0-magnitude earthquake and resulting tsunami that struck Japan on March 11. This quake was the strongest to hit the country since officials started keeping records over 100 years ago.

The current death toll stands around 3,500, but it is estimated that at least 10,000 people have died as a result of the disaster, and it may be weeks or even months before an accurate tally can be reached. Approximately 30,000 people from the most devastated areas are still unaccounted for. Shelters are accommodating 500,000 people who have lost their homes or been evacuated. Food and fuel supplies are running low in many areas, and both transportation and communication infrastructures have suffered severe damage, hampering the ability of relief agencies to respond.

“We are standing by the Church in Japan during this difficult time,” said Nagulan Nesiah, Program Officer for Episcopal Relief & Development. “As you can imagine, the needs are overwhelming and it will take time to assess the best ways to support the Church and Japan as they move toward recovery.”

Adding to the crisis is the situation at the Fukushima nuclear power plants, which has prompted the evacuation of more than 180,000 people. Three of the six reactors at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant had been completely disabled after a series of fires, explosions, leaks and partial core meltdowns. Early Tuesday morning, a pool storing spent fuel rods at a fourth reactor lost cooling capacity and began to boil, creating hydrogen-laced steam that exploded and sent radioactive particles directly into the atmosphere. Most of the facility’s 800 workers have been evacuated. There is currently a 20-kilometer evacuation zone around the plant, and people living 20 to 30 kilometers from the facility have been urged to stay indoors with all windows and vents closed. Local authorities are continuing to screen and treat people for radiation exposure.

More here-

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