Japan nuclear crisis raised awareness of nuclear power among APAC online users

Japan nuclear crisis raised awareness of nuclear power among APAC online users. Keyword searches increased by 100 folds

SEA users pay close attention to radiation issues; Taiwan, Hong Kong and South Korea users are concerned with energy resources

The devastating earthquake and subsequent tsunami caused severe damage in Japan. The resulting crisis in Fukushima further heightened awareness around the world on nuclear disasters. According to Yahoo! APAC search keyword statistics, APAC countries followed the progress of the nuclear crisis very closely in the week after the crisis.

Keyword search volume related to nuclear crisis increased 784 times in Southeast Asian countries with Malaysia recording the highest of 78,400 per cent for its topmost keyword search “Japan nuclear”, within the first week of the nuclear crisis.

In the Philippines, “Chernobyl disaster pictures”, “Chernobyl disaster” and “Bataan nuclear power plant” were the most-searched keywords and grew by 18,000 per cent while other environment-related searches such as “Earth Hour”, “2011 Jeddah flood” and “Nuclear power plant” saw close to 60 per cent increase among users.

The Japan nuclear crisis also shed new light on words that were once distant to us. A review of key search words amongst Southeast Asian countries revealed that “nuclear leak”, “radioactive pollution” or “Chernobyl disaster” ranked as top three hot searches.

The crisis also triggered searches on ‘harmful effects of radiation’, ‘protection against radioactive pollution’ and ‘advantages of nuclear power plant’, reflecting thoughts on topics beyond nuclear crisis to understand its far-reaching effects.

Aside from searching for key words, Indonesia saw a 10300 per cent jump in discussion threads relating to the “dangers of nuclear radiation” and “impact of nuclear radiation” while Malaysia reported on 8600 per cent increase in searches relating to “pros and cons of nuclear leak”. “Nuclear Meltdown” and “Nuclear Plant” dominated the search results for Singaporeans while Philippine users revisited “Chernobyl disaster pictures” causing 18000 per cent increase.

Henryl Moreno, Manager, Editorial for Search & Platforms in Southeast Asia, said, “The search volume for relevant keywords such as “nuclear power” and “radiation” increased significantly after Japan’s mega-earthquake. This highlights the concern among users for their own personal safety and the protection of the environment, as well as the need for governments to work together on international issues.”

The theme for Earth Day this year is “A Billion Acts of Green”. The goal is to raise the awareness of the one billion people on the Earth to participate in the actions of environmental protection. Through the act of sharing with each other, online users encourage more people to implement energy saving ideas in daily living.

Yahoo! APAC environment related keyword ranking (Mar.14 – Mar.20)