Miwa Sado is a Japanese journalist who died in 2013 after working too hard. Her case became public this week after labour inspectors publisheda detailed report.
The journalist worked 160 hours of overtime a month and then died of heart failure. She was working for Japan’s public broadcaster NHK and at the time of her death was gathering information on a Tokyo election .
The death of Sado is expected to make the Japanese government more aware of the health risks involved in working too much. According to a survey, about one in five workers risk a critical health condition because of too much work . Now the government wants to limitovertime to a maximum of 100 hours a month and fine companies that do not comply.
In another case that became known, 24-year old Matsuri Takahashi, killed herself in 2015 after suffering from stress and working long hours for a a Japanese advertisingagency.
Japanese employees , on average, work more hours than anywhere else in the western world. They also consume only a third of the holidays they are entitled to. Many Japanese work hard in order to show that they are loyal to their company.
In 2016, two thousand Japanese workers killed themselves due to stress and overwork. Many other died from stress-related diseases, suffering from heart attacks and high blood pressure. The Japanese refer to such work-related deaths as karoshi.
according to = as reported by
advertising agency = company that designs ads for other companies
aware = when you know that a situation exists
blood pressure = the power with which blood flows through your body
case = here: what happened to her
comply = follow the rules and laws
consume = use up ; spend
critical = dangerous
due to = because of
election = when people vote to choose someone for an official position
employee = person who works for a company
entitled = the right to have something
fine = money that you have to pay as punishment
gather = collect
government = the people who rule the country
heart failure = when your heart stops beating
labour inspector = a person who checks to see if companies obey the rules and the law
limit = here: not allow more than a certain number
loyal = here: to show that you are connected to a company
overtime = time that you spend working in addition to your normal working hours
public = known about by everyone
public broadcaster = TV company that belongs to the state
publish = to print something so that everyone can read it
refer = call
stress-related = coming from stress
survey = set of questions that you ask many people in order to find out what they think about a topic
The 2011 tsunami , which led to the nuclear catastrophe at Fukushima, has swept thousands of sea creatures across the Pacific Ocean to the US coast. In the past 6 years scientists have found mussels, starfish, crabs and other marine animals washed up on the American Pacific coast. Marine biologists expect that there are even more species to arrive in the future.
The giant waves caused by the tsunami in Japan were almost 40 metres tall and washed objects into the open sea. In 2012, scientists found debris together with living creatures on them near the Alaskan coast as well as in Hawaii. They were sea animals that have never before been seen there.
Scientists are surprised that marine species have been able to survive over such a long period in such bad conditions. However, most species travelled on plastic or glass objects, things that do not decompose and stay the same for many years. On the other hand, animals that travelled on wooden objects did not make the long journey across the Pacific, because wood lasts only for a short time.
Because the debris moved slowly across the ocean the animals had time to get used to their new surroundings as they travelled the 4,000 mile journey across the Pacific.
With so much plastic and other garbage swimming in the world’s oceans, the danger of marine animals being washed up on foreign coasts has never been greater.
Experts are not sure what effect these new species may have on the local environment. Such invasive species may change the ecosystem of the area they arrive at. They might transport new diseases or kill off existing species . In any case, it will take a decade or more to see the results.
crab= sea animal with a hard shell , five legs on each side and two large claws
creature = animal; living thing
debris = garbage, waste
decade = ten years
decompose = to break down into many smaller parts
disease = illness
ecosystem = the animals and plants in a certain area and they way they live together
effect = result ; change caused by an event
foreign = another country
garbage = waste; things people throw away
however = but
invasive species = plant or animal that does not grow naturally in an area but has come there from somewhere else
journey = trip
local environment = the world around the place that you live in
marine species = animals and plants that live in the ocean
mussel = small sea animal with a soft body that can be eaten and a black shell that is split into two parts
nuclear catastrophe = here: an atomic power plant explodes and sends dangerous radioactive waves into the atmosphere
scientist = a person who is trained in science and works in a lab
starfish = flat sea animal that has five arms and looks like a star
surroundings = the place or natural area around a person or animal
survive = live on after a dangerous situation
sweep – swept = to push something away
tsunami = very large waves, most of the time cause by an earthquake in or near the sea.