Local governments ignore cesium detection in Tokyo river eels, Asahi Shimbun May 17, 2013 By YUSUKE FUKUI/ Staff Writer Tokyo and Chiba local governments took no action for nearly two months after being informed that radioactive cesium had been detected in eels caught in a boundary river between the two prefectures.
Officials of both governments said no independent study was conducted because the eels were not caught by professional fishermen intending to sell the catch.
The detection of the cesium was also not publicized. On March 9, a 47-year-old self-employed woman caught an eel from the Edogawa river in Tokyo’s Katsushika Ward. Concerned about reports that cesium had accumulated downstream in the river, she sent the eel to Hideo Yamazaki, a professor of environmental analysis at Kinki University in Osaka Prefecture. Using a germanium semiconductor detector, Yamazaki found that the eel had 147.5 becquerels of radioactive cesium per kilogram, higher than the central government standard of 100 becquerels.
Yamazaki reported his finding to the Fisheries Agency in late March because he felt there was a need for an official investigation to back up his finding as well as further studies to look into the effects on other fish.
Although the Fisheries Agency informed both the Tokyo metropolitan and Chiba prefectural governments about the finding, neither had conducted an official study as of May 16.
An official with the Tokyo metropolitan government’s fisheries division said, “Basically, only fish that enter the distribution network is subject to studies. The eel fishing season also does not start until summer.”….. Yamazaki conducted further studies on four eels caught by the same woman in April and May in the Edogawa river. The eels had cesium levels between 97.4 becquerels and 129.6 becquerels per kilogram, with three of the eels having cesium levels exceeding the central government standard….. http://ajw.asahi.com/article/behind_news/social_affairs/AJ201305170079
‘Absurd’: Intentionally dumping Fukushima nuclear material into ocean from land “is not considered dumping” — Allowed under international law? http://enenews.com/absurd-intentionally-dumping-fukushima-nuclear-material-ocean-land-considered-dumping-allowed-international-law
Author: David Pacchioli
Date: May 6, 2013 The Fukushima disaster is without precedent and will have unprecedented impacts on future policies governing the ocean, both Japanese and international.
[...] the Fukushima accident has revealed some key shortcomings in international law, said Kentaro Nishimoto, who teaches law of the sea at Tohoku University. To illustrate, he used an incident that has brought sharp criticism from Japan’s neighbors: the intentional release of radioactive water into the sea.
[...] Nishimoto said, the relevant international laws proved to be nonbinding. In particular, he noted, the London Convention on marine pollution, although it expressly prohibits ocean dumping of radioactive material, limits these restrictions to vessels at sea. Release of materials from land is not considered dumping.
“When I tell this to people outside the field of international law, the reaction I get is, ‘This is absurd,’ ” Nishimoto acknowledged. [...]
See also: Bloomberg: Increasing risk that Fukushima radioactive waste being dumped into Pacific Ocean
Rolling Stone: “Mass release of floating radioactive particles in metro St. Louis” possible from inferno at landfill? Fire “smells like dead bodies” — 8,700 tons of nuclear waste nearby http://enenews.com/rolling-stone-mass-release-of-floating-radioactive-particles-in-metro-st-louis-possible-from-underground-inferno-at-landfill-8700-tons-of-nuclear-waste-nearby-fire-smells-like-dead-bodies
Title: St. Louis Landfill Fire
Source: Rolling Stone
Author: Steven Hsieh
Date: May 10, 2013
An underground landfill fire near tons of nuclear waste raises serious health and safety concerns – so why isn’t the government doing more to help?
[...] It’s invisible to area residents, buried deep beneath the ground in a North St. Louis County landfill. [...] “It smells like dead bodies,” observes another local.
[...] “Am I going to end up with cancer 20 years down the road?” [...]
The Bridgeton landfill fire is burning close to at least 8,700 tons of nuclear weapons wastes. [...]
About 1,200 feet south of the radioactive EPA site, the fire at Bridgeton Landfill spreads out like hot barbeque coals. No one knows for sure what happens when an underground inferno meets a pool of atomic waste, but residents aren’t eager to find out. [...]
At a March 15th press conference, Peter Anderson – an economist who has studied landfills for over 20 years – raised the worst-case scenario of a “dirty bomb,” meaning a non-detonated, mass release of floating radioactive particles in metro St. Louis. “Now, to be clear, a dirty bomb is not nuclear fission, it’s not an atomic bomb, it’s not a weapon of mass destruction,” Anderson assured meeting attendants in Bridgeton’s Machinists Union Hall. “But the dispersal of that radioactive material in air that could reach – depending upon weather conditions – as far as 10 miles from the site could make it impossible to have economic activity continue.” [...]
Robert Criss, a geochemist at Washington University in St. Louis who has studied the issue closely, says the EPA is grossly underplaying a host of risks surrounding West Lake – flooding, earthquakes, liquefaction, groundwater leaching – that could pave the way for a public health crisis. That’s not to mention the recent development of an underground fire nearby. Says Criss, “There is no geological site I can think of that is more absurd to place such waste.” [...]
Kazakhstan’s Painful Nuclear Past Looms Large Over Its Energy Future, The Atlantic 13 May 13, The central Asian country is positioning itself as a global nuclear leader, but it’s haunted by the lasting impacts of Soviet testing decades ago……….. Kazakhstan is moving forward with plans to build a civilian nuclear power facility for domestic energy needs, possibly on the Aktau site of a now defunct Soviet-era plant…..
Report: Tepco now dumping contaminated water from Fukushima plant into ocean — 200 tons of radioactive groundwater “pumped out” http://enenews.com/report-tepco-begins-dumping-contaminated-water-into-ocean-200-tons-of-radioactive-groundwater-pumped-out
Kyodo News: Tokyo Electric Power Co. plans to discharge some groundwater that has flowed into the premises of the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant [...] As a trial, TEPCO has pumped out about 200 tons of groundwater using the wells. Its density of radioactive substances was “the same as rivers in surrounding areas,” according to company officials. [...] The utility hopes to hold a meeting with local fishermen Monday to seek approval of the groundwater release [...]
SimplyInfo: TEPCO B Begins Dumping Contaminated Water Into The Sea [...] TEPCO has begun dumping groundwater pumped out of a set of wells inland from the reactors into the Pacific. TEPCO dumped 200 tons of groundwater yesterday as a test. [...]
From Yesterday: Asahi: Tepco to dump groundwater from Fukushima nuclear plant into Pacific Ocean — Trying to “avoid a total collapse” of system for handling radioactive water (PHOTO)
Fukushima: Japan sells radiation-mutated tomatoes http://www.agoracosmopolitan.com/news/headline_news/2013/05/04/5858.html# 04 MAY 2013 BY RAYMOND Lori Mochizuki, who edits Fukushima-Diary.com, reports that capitalists in Japan are now selling clearly discernible radiation contaminated and genetically mutated tomatoes. Mr. Mochizuki reports that such mutated plants are being increasingly found all over Japan, as the capitalist try to draw our attention elsewhere.
“I didn’t buy them.” They look like the mutated tomato on this article. The labels of origin read “Kumamoto”, in Kyushu.
Capitalists in Japan have apparently become so bold that they now seek to make money from tomatoes not fit to be eaten by human or animal alike, as their achon confederates in America and elsewhere seek to cover-up their negligent response to the on-going and worsening Fukushima crisis.
Ocean disposal of radioactive waste http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ocean_disposal_of_radioactive_waste#1946-93 April 2013 (Excellent maps)
From 1946 through 1993, thirteen countries (fourteen, if the USSR and Russia are considered separately) used ocean disposal or ocean dumping as a method to dispose of nuclear/radioactive waste. The waste materials included both liquids and solids housed in various containers, as well as reactor vessels, with and without spent or damaged nuclear fuel. Since 1993, ocean disposal has been banned by international treaties. (London Convention (1972), Basel Convention, MARPOL 73/78)
However, according to the United Nations, some companies have been dumping radioactive waste and other hazardous materials into the coastal waters of Somalia, taking advantage of the fact that the country had no functioning government from the early 1990s onwards. This caused health problems for locals in the coastal region and posed a significant danger to Somalia’s fishing industry and local marine life.
“Ocean floor disposal” (or sub-seabed disposal)—a more deliberate method of delivering radioactive waste to the ocean floor and depositing it into the seabed—was studied by the UK and Sweden, but never implemented.…….
Ban calls for concerted global action to save world’s oceans from pollution, acidification http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=44621&Cr=climate+change&Cr1=#.UYW18aJwpLt 11 April 2013 – Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today called on world leaders to take stronger action to protect the planet’s seas, warning that pollution, unsustainable exploitation, climate change and acidification threaten the very foundations of all life and the global economy.
“We need practical, timely action at the national, regional and global levels to improve the health of the oceans, and to recover and sustain ocean resources,” he told ‘The High Seas, Our Future! Conference’ in a message read out in Paris by United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Director-General Irina Bokova.
“It is time to take stronger, more pragmatic and more concerted effort to protect our oceans,” he said, stressing that oceans are heating up and their acidification is adversely affecting on marine life, while rising sea levels threaten to re-draw the global map at the expense of hundreds of millions of people, often the most vulnerable.
He highlighted the critical role oceans play “for the health of our planet, for all life, and for the global economy.”
Mr. Ban said he vividly remembered his meeting last year in New York with the crew of the UN-backed Tara Expedition, which travelled 70,000 miles across the Atlantic, Pacific, Antarctic and Indian oceans investigating the effects of global warming on biodiversity and marine life, particularly focusing on marine plankton.
“The Tara team and other civil society organizations are critical to raising global awareness of the importance of oceans and the challenges they face,” he concluded. “If we work together – the United Nations system, governments and businesses, civil society actors and individuals – we can find sustainable ways to support life and protect our planet and our precious oceans.”
Fukushima pushes Japan over 26 times normal radiation http://www.agoracosmopolitan.com/news/headline_news/2013/05/02/5835.html 02 MAY 2013 BY : BY SADIA ARSHAD
- As of the sampling done four days ago, the radiation fallout level has spiked up to twenty six times its average level since the past year in Japan. The reading indicates 100.4 MBq/Km2. The average reading was at 3.85 MBq/Km2 until 26th April. The reason behind this sudden climb is not known as of yet.
The leak is suspected from the radioactive waste water from the water storage ponds at Fukushima I Nuclear Power Plant. The amount of radioactive material in the water sample taken from Pond No. 1 on 27th April has led to this discovery.
As per air samples taken by the United States Environmental Protection Agency at eighteen different collection points in the Pacific States, the average level of radioactivity in the air has also spiked to more than seven times the normal levels.
Santa Susana groundwater cleanup could take centuries, official says, VC Star, By Mike Harris, April 18, 2013 The groundwater cleanup at the Santa Susana Field Laboratory, the site of a 1959 partial nuclear meltdown, could take centuries, a state official said Wednesday night.
The soil decontamination will take far less time, a few or more years, but might not be finished by a 2017 deadline, Mark Malinowski of the state Department of Toxic Substances Control told about 100 people during a cleanup update at the Grand Vista Hotel in Simi Valley.
“It’s a very aggressive schedule to get to 2017, and many things have to happen correctly in order to get there,” said Malinowski, the department’s cleanup team manager.
The groundwater cleanup will take “a lot longer … decades, possibly centuries to complete,” Malinowski said. “Groundwater is an extremely difficult thing to clean up. This contamination we’re dealing with did not happen overnight.”……
Boeing owns most of the 2,850-acre site, formerly the Rocketdyne nuclear and rocket engine test facility, in the hills between Simi Valley and the San Fernando Valley. The rest of the site is owned by the federal government and administered by NASA.
During a question-and- answer period, cleanup activists sharply questioned Malinowski’s statement that no significant contamination has been found beyond the site’s boundaries.
“I had to remind him that in 2008, they removed three football fields of contaminated soil off the adjacent Sage Ranch Park property,” William Bowling said. “And then last year, the EPA found radioactivity in a well on the campus owned by the American Jewish University, which also adjoins the site.
“They’re not giving the public the clear picture, which is that there is off-site contamination,” Bowling said. http://www.vcstar.com/news/2013/apr/18/santa-susana-soil-cleanup-may-not-make-2017-deadli/#ixzz2SI1pAhgC
During the 2003 heat wave in France, which was responsible for more than 10,000 deaths, nuclear plants had to reduce their output, worsening the crisis. The rising temperature of river water meant they could not achieve sufficient cooling and still observe discharge limits
Nuclear and coal-fired power plants with OTC systems are especially vulnerable to droughts and heat waves because they rely on by far the largest volume of water withdrawals.
US energy supplies imperiled by water shortages, The Age May 1, 2013 - John Kemp Water and energy are inextricably linked.Power plants are the largest users of water in the United States, while substantial amounts of energy are needed to supply fresh water to homes, farms and factories and treat waste water prior to safe disposal.
Rising water consumption for hydraulic fracturing and production of biofuels, coupled with severe droughts in Texas in 2011 and across more than 60 per cent of the continental United States in 2012, have propelled that link up the policymakers’ agenda.
The threat to hydroelectric generation is obvious. But in 2007-2009, drought put the water supplies of 24 of the nation’s 104 reactors at nuclear plants at risk. In 2011, more than 3,000 megawatts of thermal generating capacity in Texas also was considered at risk of having to shut down if the drought persisted as reservoir levels plunged.
Texans were asked to conserve water to keep the lights on. The state was only spared blackouts because of high output from wind farms.
On April 25, the Energy and Natural Resources Committee of the US Senate held a hearing to explore the effect of drought on the energy sector and water management, reflecting lawmakers’ fears about the instability created by the tightening links between water and energy supplies. Read more »
Fukushima’s Catastrophic Aftermath: The Dangers of Worldwide Nuclear Radiation, Global Research, By Stephen Lendman 28 April 13,“……..In early April, around 120 tons of contaminated water leaked from Fukushima’s No. 1′s underground storage tank. It contained an estimated 710 billion becquerels of radioactivity.
Water around the affected tank is highly radioactive. It’s about 800 meters from the Pacific. Government and Tokyo Electric (Tepco) claimed it won’t likely reach it. Numerous previous reports suggest otherwise.
Tepco general manager Masayuki Ono said “(w)e cannot deny the fact that our faith in the underwater tanks is being lost.”
In November 2012, Nature.com headlined “Ocean still suffering from Fukushima fallout,” saying:
“Radioactivity is persisting in the ocean waters close to Japan’s ruined nuclear power plant at Fukushima Daiichi.”
New data show high contamination levels. “The Fukushima disaster caused by far the largest discharge of radioactivity into the ocean ever seen.”
Radiation levels aren’t dropping. “The implications are serious for the fishing industry.”………http://www.globalresearch.ca/fukushimas-catastrophic-aftermath-the-dangers-of-worldwide-nuclear-radiation/5333138
Fukushima’s ‘contaminated’ rice still in storage two years, Asahi
Shimbun, April 25, 2013 By TETSUYA KASAI/ Staff Writer
FUKUSHIMA--Officials are still struggling to dispose of some 17,000
tons of contaminated rice produced in Fukushima Prefecture after the
nuclear disaster there two years ago. Most of the rice, called
“kakurimai” (rice separated for disposal), was produced in 2011.
The central government wants to incinerate the rice, but disposal
facility operators have been reluctant to do so for fear that harmful
rumors could start circulating if they handle contaminated material. Read more »
In conferences debating the number of victims of the Chernobyl accident, officials who draw paychecks from nuclear lobbies make similar arguments about alcohol abuse and “radiophobia”—stress-related illnesses caused by fear of radiation.
Strange illnesses in one of the most contaminated towns in the world challenge what we think we know about the dangers of radioactivity.Slate, By Kate Brown, April 18, 2013, ”……What do we know about communities living on contaminated terrain? Two years after the meltdown of three reactors in Fukushima, Japan, the World Health Organization forecasts that there will be no significant rise in cancers among people living nearby. These projections are based on guesses from models calculated from prior studies, mostly of Japanese people who survived Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Yet when Japanese scientists and inspected the bodies of 38,000 children living in the Fukushima Prefecture, they found 36 percent had abnormal growths on their thyroids a year after the accident.
We have grown accustomed to this scenario—media attention to nuclear accidents followed by a long, slow quarrel among scientists about whether the spilled fission products will damage human bodies or not. It will take decades to learn the public health impact of the 2011 meltdown. By then, most of the public will have lost interest. But there are other ways to get at this question of what it means to live on earth sullied with decaying radioactive isotopes.
No one has lived longer on contaminated terrain than people in the village of Muslumovo in the southern Russian Urals located downstream from the Maiak plutonium plant, built in 1948 to produce Soviet bomb cores. Read more »
Soviet radiation biology took a different trajectory from science in the United States. American researchers at that time were working with the highly politicized medical studies of Japanese bomb survivors. They narrowed the list of radiation-related illnesses to leukemia, a few cancers, and thyroid disease. Soviet doctors in formulating chronic radiation syndrome had grasped the effects of radiation on the body more holistically. They determined that radiation illness is not a specific, stand-alone disorder, but that its indications relate to other illnesses. They determined that radioactive isotopes weaken immune systems and damage organ tissue and arteries, causing illnesses of the circulation and digestive tracts and making people susceptible to conventional diseases long before they succumb to radiation-related cancers.
Strange illnesses in one of the most contaminated towns in the world challenge what we think we know about the dangers of radioactivity. Slate, By Kate Brown, April 18, 2013, ”…… the sad fact is that there are irradiated zones that are fully inhabited, and have been since the first years of the nuclear arms race. Despite a media culture enthralled with nuclear accidents, the cameras generally turn off after the first clouds of radioactive vapors dissipate.
“………..For Soviet leaders, the river dwellers were a unique opportunity in the history of health physics—what scientists call “a natural experiment” that promised to answer an important civil defense question about how to survive a nuclear attack. In 1962, the Cheliabinsk branch of the Soviet Institute of Bio-Physics, called FIB-4, started conducting regular medical exams of the Muslumovo population. FIB-4 doctors invited village children playing on the streets to a clinic room to take blood samples. In Cheliabinsk, they set up a repository of irradiated body parts: hearts, lungs, livers, bones. They started a collection of genetically malformed babies who died soon after birth, each infant preserved in a two-quart glass jar. A Dutch photographer, Robert Knoth, visited the repository and saw hundreds of babies in jars. He photographed one infant with skin like patched, rough burlap. Another boy had eyes on top of his head like a frog. During the examinations, doctors did not inform the villagers of their exposures or of diagnoses of radiation-related illness.
In 1986, soon after the Chernobyl disaster, Glufarida Galimova, working as chief doctor at a pediatric clinic in Muslumovo, her native town, was puzzled by the saturation of illness in her community. The illnesses were rare, strange, complex, and often genetic: hydrocephalic children, children with cerebral palsy, missing kidneys, extra fingers, anemia, fatigue, and weak immune systems. Many kids were orphaned or had invalid parents. Read more »
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