Alhoewel de directe democratie zwak staat in de Japan (van Belgie spreken we hélemaal niet) zien we toch dat daar waar de burgers zelf het beslissingrecht in handen nemen zij wijze besluiten nemen. Als we de zaak overlaten aan technocraten, economen en politici dan weten we hoe laat het is.
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Maki is a town of 30,000 people on the coast of the Sea of Japan in the
Niigata prefecture. In Japan's first municipal referendum on nuclear
power on August 4th 1996, 60% of the town's residents voted against
providing land needed for the construction of a nuclear power plant.
"The town s future direction does not include co-existence with a
nuclear power plant" declared Takaaki Sasaguchi, mayor of Maki. He was
voted into office in January 1996 after promising to hold a plebiscite
on the issue.
Since 1983, the Tohoku Electric Power Company has been seeking to build
an 825 MW boiling-water reactor on the coast of Maki, the first of four
planned for the site. Construction was held up because the town refused
to sell a piece of land it needed to build the reactor. Despite
government promises of large monetary subsidies, the referendum, with a
turnout of 88%, reinforced this position. This democratic decision has
caused concern for the Japanese Government. The Ministry of Trade and
Industry stated "Building nuclear power plants is a matter of state
policy and holding a referendum on it is unsuitable for such policy".
However, in the meantime, five municipalities across Japan have passed
by-laws requiring referenda to be held on nuclear proposals affecting
their towns. You ll find those examples of people using the instrument
of direct democracy in the struggle against atomic power all over the world.
Greenpeace has archived such stories: