The Jinkanpo Atsugi Incinerator
, (also known as the Shinkanpo Incineration Complex
) was a waste incinerator
located in Ayase
, Kanagawa Prefecture
. It began operation in 1980's and was closed in 2001. The incinerator was near Naval Air Facility Atsugi
(NAF Atsugi), a base manned partly by several thousand United States Navy
members and their families.
Throughout its history, the incinerator reportedly blew toxic and cancerous emissions over the high-rise base dwellings in its immediate vicinity. The incinerator's owners, arrested and jailed for charges of tax evasion
, neglected the maintenance of the facility. The pollution had become so much of a health concern for the American residents that if they showed signs of adverse health effects, the U.S. military authorities allowed them to leave early (usually servicemembers are stationed at the base for a tour of three years). Many U.S. servicemembers reported sickness and a few died from cancer
shortly after moving back to the United States
; however, there is currently no established connection between their exposure and their disease. For a time, the base required servicemembers to undergo medical screenings before being stationed at the base in order to ensure that they had no medical condition that would be worsened by the poor air quality.
In May 2001 the Japanese government purchased the plant for nearly 40 million dollars and shut it down. After the U.S. government, specifically the Department of... Read More