Thanks to everyone who's been sending Twitter messages (politely) asking Japan's Prime Minister's Office (@JPN_PMO on Twitter) to let the Rainbow Warrior do radiation monitoring work closer to the coast. So far, you've sent over 3000 Tweets, and over half a million people may have seen our call for more research.  Thousands more contacted the Prime Minister via Greenpeace Japan's website.

Unfortunately, the government still won't let us conduct independent radiation monitoring within Japan's territorial waters.  But there are signs that they are listening.  It seems the Japan government has expanded and extended its own marine radiation monitoring plan in response to our proposal.

05 May 2011 Radiation sampling work

Crew from the our ship, the Rainbow Warrior, collect sea water samples to monitor radiation contamination levels, outside Japan's territorial waters.

© Jeremy Sutton-Hibbert / Greenpeace

We were able to do some work outside the 12 mile territorial limit.  As I write, the crew of the Rainbow Warrior are heading back to Tokyo to analyse and present the samples of seawater and marine life we collected, and the Japanese authorities have also announced that the samples they took from the areas we highlighted closer to shore are highly radioactive. This again highlights the desperate need for more independent research inside Japan’s territorial waters.

Independent research is crucial to ensuring a clear, unbiased record of this crisis is made, and that the public have access to third party information to help them make the right decisions to protect their lives and livelihoods.