Toxicity of mercury has been known since ancient times, and it became clear that organic mercury (methyl mercury) is especially toxic to the central nervous system of human beings etc. through bioaccumulation due to Minamata disease in Japan during the 1950s - 1960s. As a result, the amount of mercury used in Japan have reduced, but the amount in the world have increased due to the economic growth in Asian countries and similar disease to Minamata disease has occurred. Then, in 2017 Mercury Convention on Mercury came into force from the perspective of environmental protection on a global scale and it is a trend to comprehensively regulate the use of mercury and the emissions of mercury into air,water and soil. Initiatives at universities to contribute to reducing environmental impact. Proper management and use of mercury-containing reagents and mercury-containing products are required, and proper disposal of unwanted mercurycontaining products and mercury wastes are required. Therefore, proper knowledge of characteristics, toxicity and handling for mercury, accurate mercury analysis, proper treatment of mercury wastes, and removal of mercury pollution are important. Here, changes of analytical techniques of mercury, two methods for the determination of trace mercury without the interference of iodide, and removal method in the case of mercury contamination has occurred at the University laboratory were explained.
In this document, recent trends on Nuclear Science and Technology education (NST) in secondary schools in the Asia-Pacific region were introduced. The IAEA is hosting a technical cooperation program on NST human resource development. It aims to develop key teachers in this region, and also aims to develop a standard NST education curriculum in this region (Phase I; 2012 - 2016 and Phase II, 2018 - 2021). The role of Japan in this program and the related R&D status, which the authors, Team JAPAN, are currently working, were introduced. Feedback from official pilot activities in the six countries of the Philippines, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Sri Lanka and Jordan has been utilized, and Team JAPAN has expanded its perspective to develop new educational tools and modules. Main development examples are the Peltier cooling type cloud chamber with a large area of view, a next-generation environmental radiation survey meter for education, the simple hand-held radiation counting tube for education, and the radiation sources made of natural substances. The authors consider that how to obtain educational tools and radiation sources suitable for schools and how to handle them well and safely is an important subject for future study.
Promoting employment of persons with disabilities in universities is important not only for fulfilling the social responsibilities of universities but also for constructing safe campuses and improving work efficiency based on diverse perspectives. It is also decided that the legal employment rate will be raised in 2021, and expansion of works covered by people with disabilities and creation of rewarding jobs are required. On the other hand, safe workplace environment should be secured. In this study, we conducted interview surveys with three national universities in Japan and Nagoya University on the current state of safety management on employment of disabled persons at universities. In addition, we analyzed cases of accidents/incidents occurred at Nagoya University. Based on these results, we improved and implmented the safety education for the employees with disabilities working in Nagoya University. As an effort to expand works covered by persons with disabilities, we have assigned new tasks for them using personal computer that had been carried out by technical staff, and they have been doing the tasks successfully. We believe that we have contributed to improving the workplace safety and to making our university more attractive workplaces for them through these efforts.