Though it was the season when Mt. Fuji has the most snow, snow is already disappearing.
From December to January, most of the snow melted only within a month. Mt. Fuji is heated.
Citizens near Mt. Fuji talks they haven’t seen such a thing.
A senior Chinese Foreign Ministry official on Wednesday lashed potential U.S. plans to collaborate with partner nations in developing a ballistic missile shield covering Asia, China Daily reported (see GSN, March 27).
U.S. Assistant Defense Secretary Madelyn Creedon in March said the Obama administration was discussing cooperative missile defense with Australia, Japan and South Korea, according to earlier reporting. Any antimissile system for the region would be based on the developing U.S. “phased adaptive approach” program to deploy land- and sea-based missile interceptors around Europe, Creedon told lawmakers.
“The Chinese government always insists that (countries) should start by maintaining global strategic stability and promoting strategic mutual trust between major powers to handle the issue of missile defense prudently,” according to Luo Zhaohui, Asian affairs chief for the Chinese Foreign Ministry.
“Building a missile defense system in the Asia-Pacific region will have negative effects on global and regional strategic stability, and go against the Read more…
Two Russian anti-submarine aircraft have flown over a Japanese destroyer preparing to shoot down a North Korean rocket if it passes over Japan’s territory, a Japanese TV channel reported on Wednesday, citing the country’s Defense Ministry.
According to the ministry, the Il-38 planes were seen on Tuesday off the south-west coast of the largest Japanese island of Honshu, where the destroyer is currently based. The ministry said that Japanese fighters accompanied the IL-38s during their flight.
The NHK TV channel suggested that the Russian planes had been collecting information on the multi-purpose combat system Aegis which is installed on the destroyer. Russian patrol aircrafts have been spotted performing reconnaissance missions, without Read more…
A Japanese bank will introduce ATMs that use palm scanners in place of cash cards, it said Wednesday.
on an ATM (Credit: Fujitsu)
Ogaki Kyoristu Bank said the new machines will allow customers to withdraw or deposit cash and check their balances by placing their hand on a scanner and entering their birthday plus a pin number. The ATMs will initially be installed at 10 banks, as well as a drive-through ATM and two mobile banks, from September.
Ogaiki announced the new ATMs with the slogan “You are your cash card.”
One reason the bank decided to use the new technology was the massive earthquake and tsunami that ravaged the country’s northeast coast last year, it said. Many who escaped the tsunami lost their homes, personal possessions and all forms of identification, and so were unable to access their bank accounts until weeks or months later.
Finger and palm scanners are currently used by many large Japanese banks along with cash cards as an additional safety feature, but Ogaki said it will be the first bank in the country to do away with cards Read more…
North Korea is preparing a long-range rocket for launch, defying international warnings against violating a ban on missile activity.
Pyongyang said last month it would launch what it claims is an observation satellite, the Kwangmyongsong-3 (Shining Star), using a three-stage rocket during celebrations for the 100th anniversary of North Korean founder Kim Il-Sung’s birth.
Experts say the launch of the Unha-3 (Milky Way 3) rocket, which is Read more…
Dual jolt could trigger Tokyo temblor up to magnitude 9
Two previously unknown active faults were found off the Boso Peninsula in Chiba Prefecture, with one researcher warning that a jolt in the two faults at the same time could trigger an earthquake of magnitude 8 to 9.
The two faults, one at least 160 km long and the other more than 300 km, were found on the floor of the Pacific Ocean around 100 to 200 km southeast of the southern tip of the peninsula, according to a group of researchers from Hiroshima University, Nagoya University, the Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology and other parties.
“The faults have been unmarked and uninvestigated. There is a possibility of strong jolts and tsunami reaching the southern Kanto region (including Tokyo) and the Tokai region (central Honshu). It should be promptly investigated in detail,” said research group member Mitsuhisa Watanabe, a professor at Toyo University.
The group will report its findings at a Thursday meeting of the Association of Japanese Geographers in Tokyo.
The group used a bathymetric chart made by the Japan Coast Guard to analyze the geography of the seafloor in detail. It then estimated the location of the active faults by taking into consideration cliffs formed by earthquakes and other elevated features.
According to Watanabe, the two faults were Read more…
The strongest tremor, off Hokkaido island, was 6.8 magnitude and caused tidal changes that prompted some communities to issue evacuation orders or tsunami advisories to residents nearest the coast.
A swelling of 20 centimeters (8 inches) was observed in the port of Hachinohe in Aomori, northern Japan, about one hour after the tremor. Smaller changes were reported in several locations on Hokkaido island and Aomori prefecture.
The Japan Meteorological Agency lifted all tsunami advisories about an hour and half later.
Within about three hours, a magnitude-6.1 quake shook buildings in the capital. It was centered just Read more…
China’s defense spending – now officially $106 billion but estimated by the Pentagon and independent researchers to be more than $160 billion – is on track to exceed that of all its Asian neighbors combined within a few years. This is particularly striking in light of a wider Asian arms race: India is the world’s Read more…
SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Radioactive contamination from the Fukushima power plant disaster has been detected as far as almost 400 miles off Japan in the Pacific Ocean, with water showing readings of up to 1,000 times more than prior levels, scientists reported Tuesday.
But those results for the substance cesium-137 are far below the levels that are generally considered harmful, either to marine animals or people who eat seafood, said Ken Buesseler of the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution in Massachusetts.
He spoke Tuesday in Salt Lake City at the annual Ocean Sciences Meeting, attended by more than 4,000 researchers this week.
The results are for water samples taken in June, about three months after the power plant disaster, Buesseler said. In addition to thousands of water samples, researchers also sampled fish and plankton and found Read more…
China’s Navy ships moved to the Western part of the Pacific for military exercise. In response Tokyo expressed its concern about the growing naval activity of the Chinese Armed Forces in that region.
According to Japanese mass media, a group consisting of four battle ships (frigates) of the Chinese Navy passed through the waters between the Japanese islands of Okinawa and Miyako. The Chinese Defense Ministry already made a statement that the tour of the ships is connected to the preparation of the annual military exercise of routine nature. In response to the concern of the Japanese side, Beijing stated that China has a free right to pass in those waters. According to the Chinese authorities, that is completely Read more…