China Beat Archive



Daniel Knorr

Date of this Version


Document Type



2011 in The China Beat


Copyright 2011. Used by permission.


A few days after the Japan earthquake last month, the high school student I tutor asked if I had considered leaving Beijing with my wife. I had been keeping up with the news about the crisis at the Fukushima nuclear plant, and to the best of my knowledge there was no real threat to us in Beijing so I was a little surprised by his question. Even though I assumed the nuclear plant was the source of his concern, I asked what he was referring to. (Honestly, part of me was a little afraid that he knew something I didn’t.) When he confirmed that it was Fukushima that was on his mind, I tried to reassure him that there was little or no danger to Beijing, but he was still rather worried—understandable given the magnitude of the disaster that had just occurred not so very far away.