A message from Sapporo to the people of the world

The recent Great East Japan Earthquake caused extensive damage along the Pacific coast of eastern Japan. While mourning the victims of the disaster, the people of Japan are currently working very hard to restore normality to the devastated areas. Amid such efforts, we are eternally grateful for the heartwarming messages of support received from countless people throughout the world.

The Great East Japan Earthquake and the subsequent accidents at the Fukushima Dai-ichi Nuclear Power Plant have shocked the world. While we understand the magnitude of the impact, we also fear that the dangers have been over-exaggerated by considerable numbers of the overseas media, resulting in incorrect images being conveyed to the people of the world. Consequently, the drop in the number of tourists from overseas and cancellation of events and conferences are now causing a damaging effect on regional economies of areas even not directly affected by the disaster.

We believe that, as conveyed in the New York Times, excessive voluntary restraint and a sharp decrease in visitors will only damage those regions which need to work at full strength in order to support the disaster stricken areas, resulting in insufficient resources to contribute to restoration activities.

For this reason, in order to encourage overseas governments to lift warnings against travel to Japan as early as possible and restore events, conferences, conventions and tourism to the previous state as quickly as possible, we are issuing this message to convey the correct facts regarding the current circumstances.

  1. The city of Sapporo escaped unscathed by the earthquake and the Fukushima nuclear plant accident, and life here continues as usual in a completely safe and peaceful environment.
  2. Sapporo is located appropriately 630 km (390 miles) away from the Fukushima power plant. This is three times farther than the 200 km that separates New York and Washington DC from Three Mile Island. Furthermore, the Fukushima accident differs from the nuclear meltdown at Chernobyl where an explosion and fire disperse large quantities of radioactive material into the atmosphere. Radiation dose in Hokkaido is within normal levels* and there is absolutely no danger at all from radiation contamination.
  3. There are no concerns whatsoever regarding tourism or the staging of events, conferences or conventions.
  4. Sapporo will soon be enjoying its most beautiful and pleasant time of year. We, the Sapporo citizens, are sincerely looking forward to welcoming visitors.

We understand the interaction among people is to take place in a safe and peaceful society. Therefore, we are currently doing our utmost to ensure that tranquility and safety returns to the disaster stricken areas. To help these efforts and to speed up the recovery process, all that we ask is that the people of the world come and visit Sapporo at the earliest possible date. *Radiation monitoring is conducted every hour in Sapporo and the results are shown on the webpage below.
(Continuous monitoring of the radiation dose rate in the air using a monitoring post on the rooftop of the Hokkaido Institute of Public Health building (North 19 West 12, Sapporo)

Monitoring results of the radiation dose rate in the air in Hokkaido (Sapporo)

Radiation in Hokkaido is within the range of normal levels and there is absolutely no danger at all from radiation contamination.

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