Japan Crisis Escalates, S.F. to Join Nation in Candlelight Vigil

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It's the least we could do
As news spread on Friday that Japan is facing a possible breach at the troubled nuclear plant, San Francisco residents and politicians decided they would show their support with a candlelight vigil Monday after sunset.

Media outlets are reporting that radioactive contamination might be worse than previously thought -- which is creating concerns that groundwater could become tainted. Yet Japanese officials decided against evacuating residents nearby, claiming they will be safe as long as they stay indoors.

The latest news of the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear plant came Friday afternon as the death toll from the March 11 earthquake and tsunami passed 10,000. Hundreds of thousands of people whose homes were destroyed still have no power, no meals, and have have yet to take a shower since the 8.9 earthquake hit two weeks ago, according to media outlets.

Monday's candlelight vigil -- which will include Supervisor Ross Mirkarimi -- will be one of 200 happening simultaneously around the nation on the 32nd anniversary of the Three Mile Island nuclear meltdown in Pennsylvania in 1979.

"We've been working with a lot of people who are distraught over the tsunami, earthquake, and pending nuclear disaster in Japan," said Lauren Thorpe, field organizer with San Francisco's Greepeace, which is hosting the vigil. "So we will be gathering to show that we stand with Japan."

People will be asked to write messages to people in Japan on origami cranes, which will be sent to the Greepeace office in Japan, Thorpe said.

Bring your own candle.

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