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The News That Matters about the Nuclear Industry

Increased ionising radiation in Chernobyl area, following wildfires

wildfire-nukeRadiation spike recorded after Chernobyl wildfire, International Business Times, 
July 2, 2015 Nuclear inspectors have recorded a significant increase in radiation in the Chernobyl exclusion zone, after wildfires tore through forest near the devastated nuclear power station.

Radiation recordings in the Polesskoye settlement, which was abandoned after the 1986 nuclear reactor explosion, show air contaminated with 10 times the normal levels of deadly cesium-137, The State Nuclear Regulatory Inspectorate of Ukraine announced.

Cesium-137 is one of the most dangerous elements released in a nuclear explosion, and can cause leukemia after accumulating in the body……..

Ukranian capital Kiev lies only 132 km (82m) downwind of the current blaze, and Minsk, capital of Belarus, 342 km (213 m) north-west. The surrounding region is now largely deserted after the Soviet government resettled 116,000 people in the wake of the disaster.

“The real problem would be if the wind strength increased and fire got out of control. If there are very strong winds and they were blowing from east to west – as does happen in summer – it could be a risk to Europe,” he said.

Baverstock said that in the wake of the disaster, Cesium-137 was absorbed into the soil, and from, there into organic matter including tree bark and leaves. In forest fires, the chemical can be released into the atmosphere again, and can cause cancer to those who inhale it, or enter the food chain if ingested by animals.

Reports indicated that the fire is currently some distance from the main reactor, which is covered by a crumbling concrete dome, or the Red Forest, the 10 km zone around the reactor, believed to be one of the most radioactively contaminated areas in the world……..http://www.ibtimes.co.uk/radiation-spike-recorded-after-chernobyl-wildfire-1508955

July 4, 2015 Posted by | environment, Ukraine | Leave a comment

Firefighters working around the clock as wildfires rage near Chernobyl nuclear site

wildfire-nukeWildfires Once Again Rage Nearby the Chernobyl Nuclear Site https://news.vice.com/article/wildfires-once-again-rage-nearby-the-chernobyl-nuclear-site By VICE News July 1, 2015  A fire is raging across half a square mile of drought-stricken land surrounding the remains of the Chernobyl nuclear power plant in Ukraine, the site of one of the worst nuclear disasters in history. It’s the second fire to hit the area since late April. After a reactor exploded at the plant in 1986, authorities established an 18-mile exclusion zone that remains off-limits to most people today. Some parts of the zone remain highly contaminated.

Ukraine’s State Emergency Situations Service reported early Tuesday that the fire was within the exclusion zone, according to the Ukrainian news service Interfax. But the country’s Minister of Ecology and Natural Resources later told reporters the fire is burning outside of the zone. He added that the blaze started due to drought.

The fire started Monday night and was still burning Tuesday morning, the Associated Pressreported.

Firefighters are working 24 hours a day amidst strong winds, according to a post on the emergency service’s Facebook page. Radiation levels are within normal, the agency said.

In late April, the largest forest fire in Ukraine since 1992 came within 12 miles of the Chernobyl plant.

In February, researchers warned that fires nearby Chernobyl “pose a high risk of redistributing radioactivity.” And, say scientists, wildfires in the area could become more frequent and more intense due to climate change.

July 1, 2015 Posted by | environment, Ukraine | Leave a comment

Radiation effects on Fukushima’s birds are getting worse

Mousseau said the reason comes down to the long-term impact of the radiation. “It takes multiple generations for the effects of mutations to be expressed in natural populations,” he said

bird barn swallowNear site of Fukushima disaster, birds still in peril, By MICHAEL CASEY CBS NEWS April 16, 2015, Four years after the Fukushima disaster, birds are becoming a rarity around the damaged nuclear site.

A study in the Journal of Ornithology found that half the populations of 57 bird species had suffered declines. Studying birds over three years at 400 sites, University of South Carolina biologist Tim Mousseau and his colleagues found that the numbers continue to decline over time – even as the radiation threat drops.

“There are dramatic reductions in the number of birds that should be there based on the overall patterns,” Mousseau told CBS News. “In terms of barn swallows in Fukushima, there had been hundreds if not thousands in many of these towns where we were working. Now we are seeing a few dozen of them left. It’s just an enormous decline.”

In addition to barn swallows, the great reed warbler, Japanese bush warbler and the meadow bunting have been the hardest hit………

Mousseau also has been among researchers leading a project that compares the environmental impact of Fukushima to that of Chernobyl, the scene in 1986 of the worst accident at a nuclear plant. As the director of the Chernobyl + Fukushima Research Initiative, he looked at the impact of birds in both places.

In a second paper in the Journal of Ornithology this month, Mousseau and his longtime collaborator Anders Moller of the French National Centre for Scientific Research found that migratory birds appear to fare worse around Chernobyl than year-round residents. The opposite is true in Fukushima…….

Around Fukushima, Mousseau predicts the worst may not be over.

“The relationship between radiation and numbers started off negative the first summer, but the strength of the relationship has actually increased each year,” Mousseau says. “So now we see this really striking drop-off in numbers of birds as well as numbers of species of birds. So both the biodiversity and the abundance are showing dramatic impacts in these areas with higher radiation levels, even as the levels are declining.”

Mousseau said the reason comes down to the long-term impact of the radiation.

“It takes multiple generations for the effects of mutations to be expressed in natural populations,” he said, referring to effects such as shorter life spans and reduced fertility. “At some point, there will be a balance of the negative effects of mutations and immigration of fresh, new birds. We just don’t know enough to say when a balance will be reached.” http://www.cbsnews.com/news/fukushima-disaster-taking-a-toll-on-birds/

July 1, 2015 Posted by | environment, Fukushima 2015, Japan | Leave a comment

Radiation legacy of atomic bomb research

LAST SECRET OF THE ATOM BOMB, Who What Why, 30 June 15  In August 2005, the New York Police Department, with the Department of Energy, conducted an anti-terrorism radiation flyover survey. The survey was intended to provide a baseline of radiological activity, in order to catch a suspicious construction of a dirty bomb.

They didn’t find a dirty bomb—but there was plenty of radiological activity. Surveyors found 80 radioactive locations in the city—one of them being Great Kills Park in Staten Island, one of the city’s five boroughs. The Park is a popular place near a suburban enclave inhabited by cops, firefighters and other unsuspecting residents. The Park, more than 500 acres of woods surrounding softball and soccer fields and a marina, was constructed from garbage dumped in the bay between 1944 and 1946. Unregulated and illegal dumping has a long history in New York City.

Children Are Especially Vulnerable Continue reading

July 1, 2015 Posted by | environment, USA | Leave a comment

Radioactive Polonium from Fukushima has contaminated Southeast USA

text ionisingNASA Experts: Southeast US hit by “anomalously high” levels of polonium from Fukushima — Never seen before, except during volcanic events — Fallout also detected in Mississippi river — Polonium releases kept secret in past nuclear disasters; Death estimates would skyrocket if included http://enenews.com/nasa-experts-anomalously-high-levels-polonium-found-southeastern-after-fukushima-explosions-never-recorded-before-except-during-volcanic-events-fallout-detected-mississippi-river-polonium-rel?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+ENENews+%28Energy+News%29


Journal of Environmental Radioactivity, W. Yang and L. Guo, NASA Stennis Space Center and Univ. of Southern Mississippi Dept. of Marine Science, 2012 (emphasis added): Depositional fluxes and residence time of atmospheric radioiodine (131I) from the Fukushima accident

  • The Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant explosions… emitted vast quantities of radioactive materials into the environment… radioiodine (131I)… 134Cs and 137Cs are of special concern to people because they could trigger dangerous health effects
  • However, data on time series depositional fluxes are still lacking, preventing… prediction of the scope of dispersion especially in North America
  • Following the Fukushima accident, a high level of 131I was first detected on March 23 in a dry deposition sample at [NASA’s space center]
  • After this initial fallout, the 131I depositional flux increased up to ten- to twenty-foldduring the following two weeks, varying from 218 mBq/m^2/day to 463 Bq/m^2/day
  • Concurrent high rainfall and high 131I fluxes were observed at the SSC site… from 97 to 337 mBq/L with an average of 217 mBq/L
  • In addition to precipitation samples, 131I was also detectable in surface waters from the Pearl River in Mississippi, with an activity of 6.7 mBq/L
  • Interestingly, the 210Po/210Pb ratios of the fallout samples during the peak 131I fallout period were anomalously high… Before and after the Fukushima accident, the environmental 210Po/210Pb ratio in precipitation samples varied from 0.02 to 0.09 with anaverage of 0.06 at the SSC in southern Mississippi… However, the 210Po/210Pb ratioduring the Fukushima fallout was up to 1.5 on March 23…
  • To date, excess 210Po in the atmosphere was only reported for high temperature activities such as volcanic eruptions or degassing… Therefore, the anomalously high 210Po/210Pb ratios observed in the southern US were mostly derived from theFukushima Dai-ichi nuclear plant explosions which could have resulted in the fractionation of environmental 210Po and 210Pb and thus the preferential release of volatile 210Po into the atmosphere. Indeed, the anomalous 210Po/210Pb ratios were accompanied by the peak fallout of 131I… indicating that the Fukushima nuclear plant explosions mainly contributed to the anomaly in the 210Po/210Pb ratio…
  • it seemed that regions reachable by 131I transport within two weeks from Fukushima would receive much more fallout

New Scientist, Mar 1983: 25 years since the nuclear accident at Windscale… Attention has centred [on] radioactive iodine… the National Radiological Protection Board (NRPB) said the iodine-131 may have killed 13… However, the damage to health may have been much more severe… Indeed, it could represent the worst environmental disaster that Western Europe has known this century… re-examination of the data… reveals that one crucial isotope released in the fire has been ignored… there was one isotope released in the accident that is highly mobile [with] a high take-up by the human body… this was only revealed this week by the NRPB after New Scientist’s inquiries… It is polonium… polonium could give… a total dose to the UK of 5 million man-rems… the death figures may have to be revised significantly upwards… The figures suggest that some 1200 excess cases of leukaemia may have been  caused in Britain by the Windscale accident. Since leukaemia deaths account for some 15 per cent of cancers attributable to nuclear accidents, the total toll of cancer deaths suggested is 8000… Clearly further investigations into the whole of the Windscale accident must be urgently pursued. The British are in effect now the nuclear laboratory of the world.

Woods Hole’s Ken Buesseler and others have cited polonium-210 levels in seafood tested for Fukushima radionuclides, for example: “Doses from eating fish are very low off US, and in fact 500 times greater from a natural radionuclide, polonium-210, but no one worries about 210Po.”

June 28, 2015 Posted by | environment, secrets,lies and civil liberties, USA | Leave a comment

Buildup of radioactive materials in Pacific ocean food chain – salmon, tuna and other species

radiation-in-sea--food-chaiStudy: Fukushima radiation will cause long-term harm to Pacific salmon population — Efforts needed to protect species from possible extinction — Radiation monitoring is critical to avoid human health problems — “US inland areas also at risk of exposure” http://enenews.com/study-fukushima-will-result-marked-lasting-decrease-population-pacific-salmon-efforts-needed-protect-species-possible-extinction-continued-monitoring-will-be-critical-avoidance-health-problems-h?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+ENENews+%28Energy+News%29

Journal of Applied Mathematics — Modelling the Effects of Radioactive Effluent on Thunnus orientalis and Oncorhynchus gorbuscha, New Jersey City Univ. (Chen, Ding, Laracuenti, Lipat(Columbia Univ., NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies)), 2013 (emphasis added):

  • The contamination of the Pacific Ocean by the radioactive pollutants released from the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant has raised legitimate concerns over the viability of marine wildlife. We… explore the extent of the effects of the radioactive effluent on two marine species: the Pacific Bluefin Tuna and the Pacific Pink Salmon…
  • Because of the brevity of the period of time during which radioactive material was discharged… [it’s] assumed to be instantaneous [note the study was released beforeTEPCO admitted the flow of radioactive material into the Pacific never ended]…
  • This pollution was spread through the entire Pacific Ocean…
  • A numerical solution… will simulate the effects of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster…This simulation has far-reaching implications for decisions related to the location of nuclear power plants as well as to fishing policy…
  • According to data released by Tepco, the initial concentrations of radioactivity following the release of 11,500 metric tonnes of contaminated water into the Pacific Ocean… are 310,000 Bq/L of iodine-131, 230,000 Bq/L of caesium-134, and 230,000 Bq/L of caesium-137 [which] produces the initial radioactivity of the iodine-131: 3.57 trillion Bq… caesium-134: 2.65 trillion Bq… caesium-1372.65 trillion Bq [note that estimates by gov’t scientists are 10,000+ times higher]…
  • Analysis of the results shows that the Pacific Bluefin Tuna will experience a steeper population decline in the short term compared to its expected population decline… after which the population will return to the expected population.
  • Pacific Pink Salmon, on the other hand, will simply decline at a faster pace than the expected population decline… radioactive effluent will result in a marked and lasting decrease in population [see Fig. 5, 6]…
  • Before the conclusions are subjected to social analysis, the model’s limitations must be considered… the model does not reflect the migratory nature of both fish species. This does not, however, entirely negate the validity of the simulation: over a sufficiently long period of time, the short-term movement of the fish throughout the Pacific Ocean becomes negligible… The results of the model… opt to consider the fish species’ population on average…
  • The very high rate of decline of the Pacific Pink Salmon indicates that live specimens may contain relatively high levels of radioactivity. Continued monitoring of the Pacific Pink Salmon, as well as all marine species, for radioactivity will be critical to the avoidance of health problems for humans. Because the species migrates throughout freshwater rivers and tributaries of British Columbia, Alaska, and the Pacific Northwest of the United States, inland areas are also at risk of exposure to, at the very least, low-level radioactivity. Moreover, the rapid rate of decline of the Pacific Pink Salmon, in conjunction with rapidly deteriorating conditions, seems to necessitate drastic action. Work beyond sustainability is needed to protect the species from possible extinction
  • Because of the deleterious effects on the marine environment… it seems reasonable to suggest that any new nuclear power plants be constructed sufficiently far from coastal waterways so as to mitigate the absorption of any radioactive contaminants into the biosphere. This, however, would pose a risk to the environment near the nuclear power plant without the capacity of an ocean to diffuse the radioactivity…
  • The authors are thankful to [National Science Foundation award] NSF HRD-0902132 (LSAMP) for the support to do this research.

See also: Scientists: Radioactivity in food web off Pacific Northwest to “significantly increase” — Salmon forecast to exceed Japan radiation limit — “Major concern for public health” (POSTER)

June 19, 2015 Posted by | oceans | Leave a comment

The Chernobyland Fukushima Research Initiative report – no evidence for complacency

Chernobyl is Still Bleeding, Radiation Prevention, 15 June 15 Of the many signs Chernobyl is far from recovery almost 30 years after their single reactor (reactor #4) nuclear disaster, here’s a hand full from the The Chernobyland Fukushima Research Initiative report summary:

Population sizes and numbers of species (i.e. biodiversity) of birds, mammals, insects, and spiders are significantly lower in areas of high contamination in Chernobyl.

For many birds and small mammals, life spans are shorter and fertility is depressed in areas of high contamination.

The bird species that are most likely to show declines in numbers in response to radiation are those that historically have shown increased mutation rates for other reasons possibly related to DNA repair ability or reduced defenses against oxidative stress.

Neurological development is impacted as evidenced by depressed brain size in both birds and rodents and consequent effects on cognitive ability and survival have been demonstrated in birds.

Deleterious effects of radiation exposure seen in natural populations in Chernobyl include increased rates of cataracts, tumors, growth abnormalities, deformed sperm, and albinism.

Tree growth and microbial decomposition in the soil are also depressed in areas of high radiation, reducing food and nutrients for plants and animals

Observations in Fukushima Continue reading

June 17, 2015 Posted by | environment, Japan, Ukraine | Leave a comment

Energy inefficiency and hot water pollution in Entergy’s Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station

nuke-tapOF NUCLEAR INTEREST: Energy efficiency and Pilgrim Nuclear http://cambridge.wickedlocal.com/article/20150612/NEWS/150619852 The inefficiency of Entergy’s Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station is overlooked when it comes to figuring out how we can use our resources in a more economically and environmentally sound manner. By Brian Boyle, William Maurer and Meg Sheehan  Cape Cod Bay Watch

Energy efficiency is on everyone’s mind these days. State and federal government programs incentivize homeowners and businesses to become more energy efficient. Yet, the inefficiency of Entergy’s Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station is overlooked when it comes to figuring out how we can use our resources in a more economically and environmentally sound manner.

An investigation into Pilgrim’s efficiency uncovered that about two-thirds (66 percent) of the heat energy produced is dumped into Cape Cod Bay as waste heat.

Pilgrim generates electricity by boiling water using nuclear fission, which creates steam. The steam runs turbines that make electricity. The cooling water Pilgrim needs for condensing the steam back into water comes from Cape Cod Bay: up to 510 million gallons every day. The water from Cape Cod Bay absorbs excess heat during the process of making electricity, and is pumped back into the Bay about 30 degrees Fahrenheit hotter.

Only about one-third (34 percent) of the heat energy produced at Pilgrim is converted into electricity for consumers. At this rate, Pilgrim is about as efficient as a typical coal fired power plant.

Entergy’s wasteful operations are sanctioned under an outdated Clean Water Act permit issued by U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the state. EPA and the state allow Entergy to use an inefficient, outdated “once-through” cooling water system to withdraw cooling water from Cape Cod Bay, instead of requiring a more efficient, updated closed-loop system. Pilgrim has been using this outdated cooling water system since it started operating in 1972. The hot water – or wasted energy – that Entergy dumps into Cape Cod Bay harms marine resources and pollutes our ocean.

Entergy’s use of Cape Cod Bay for cooling water is supposed to be tightly regulated by EPA and the state, to make sure Pilgrim uses the best technologies available that reduce environmental harm. However, since 1972, EPA and the state have not required any updates to Pilgrim’s cooling technology, and have let Entergy’s Clean Water Act permit expire in 1996 – almost two decades ago.

To put Pilgrim’s inefficiency and wastefulness into perspective, here is a comparison. The amount of heat energy Entergy dumps into the Bay each year – about 42 trillion BTUs – is enough to heat 437,800 homes every year with fuel oil. That’s more than four times the number of households on the Cape and Islands, and more than two times the number of households in Plymouth County.

The volume of water Entergy dumps into the Bay each year is more than enough to run a shower in every household on the Cape and Islands every day, all day, all year long. It is also 100 times more than the town of Plymouth’s Water Department pumps to meet the entire town’s municipal and domestic water requirements each year.

 

June 15, 2015 Posted by | environment, USA, water | Leave a comment

Report: Nuclear fallout is Japan’s top environmental problem

flag-japanA Japanese government report says the release of massive amounts of radioactive materials is still the country’s top environmental problem 4 years after the nuclear accident in Fukushima Prefecture.

This year’s white paper on the environment says high levels of radiation are still detected in some areas. It says affected areas face a number of problems, such as depopulation and ungrounded rumors.
The report calls for the introduction of renewable energy in such areas. It proposes using part of earnings from green energy generation to help residents to return to their communities http://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/english/news/nuclear.html

June 8, 2015 Posted by | environment, Japan | Leave a comment

Significant rise in ionising radiation in atmosphere over Southern California

radiation-warningThe first tests of summer also indicate a high presence of alpha radiation which, by itself, comprised 75 percent of the overage with beta making up the other 25 percent. Indeed, the alpha detected alone was over 168 percent of background levels of radiation.

While alpha particles are positively charged and are relatively heavy, blocking them is easier than beta or gamma because they travel a short distance before losing energy. Nevertheless, alpha radiation is between 20 to 1,000 times more dangerous to the human organism due to their “relative biological effectiveness” in causing cell-death and cancer according to numerous sources.

Until the EPA ever gets its RadNet system fully operational, Americans will only have a partial idea of how ‘hot’ with radiation its air is. Failure to maintain this system leaves the country at a huge loss should radiological releases happen due to nuclear plant malfunctions and meltdowns as well as terrorism by an expanding list of American enemies who vow to destroy it.

Flag-USAAlpha radiation clouds Los Angeles air, Enviro Reporter.com 3 June 15 The first summer air radiation analysis for Southern California shows a significant uptick in alpha and beta according to a dust analysis completed June 1. Results show radiation registering at 325.7 percent of background levels.

This means that the dust reading in its entirety was over three times background. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency considers radiation three times background or above to be “significant.” Continue reading

June 4, 2015 Posted by | environment, radiation, USA | Leave a comment

Censored emails show US govt concern about Fukushima radiation on West Coast of USA

text ionisingFlag-USACensored US gov’t emails reveal proposed plan to test West Coast residents for Fukushima fallout — “Many cases of cancer may end up being attributed to exposures” — Doses could exceed EPA’s emergency levels — UC Berkeley Nuclear Dept.: “Prompt action should be taken” http://enenews.com/govt-emails-reveal-proposed-plan-test-west-coast-residents-fukushima-radiation-many-cases-cancer-being-attributed-exposures-doses-could-exceed-epas-emergency-levels?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+ENENews+%28Energy+News%29

FOIA Document — Excerpts from email by Per Peterson, Chair of Dept. of Nuclear Engineering at Univ.of California Berkeley & scientific adviser to Energy Secretary Steven Chu , Mar 23, 2011 at 1:35p (emphasis added):

  • [Sent to John Holdren, senior adviser to Pres. Obama on science & technology, Secretary of Energy Steven Chu, DOE/NRC officials, and others who were redacted]
  • I would like to raise another issue which now merits expeditious, near term action. There is a short time window… during which it will remain possible to… measure any I-131 that members of the public may have ingested…
  • Collecting this data… would be very valuable…
  • UCB faculty [is in] general agreement that prompt action should be taken
  • Many cases of thyroid cancer, and other health problems, may end up being attributed to exposures from the Fukushima accident… on the U.S. west coast

Continue reading

June 4, 2015 Posted by | environment, secrets,lies and civil liberties, USA | Leave a comment

Anxiety in Malawi over Australian uranium miner Paladin’s pollution of Lake Malawi

“It’s shocking that Paladin has disposed of millions of tons of radioactive and chemically hazardous waste on a plateau with very negative geological and hydrogeological characteristics,”

On the shores of Malawi’s lake of stars, activists raise uranium fears, Guardian, , 3 June 15 
uranium sludge to river Malawi

When dead fish were washed ashore in northern Malawi, activists and residents looked to a nearby uranium mine for answers – the latest battle in a protracted conflict with Paladin, the mine’s Australian owners “……
For many of the tens of thousands of people living in Karonga, a lakeside district in northern Malawi, life revolves around fishing. So when dead fish began to wash ashore, they were worried. Some blamed pollution from the nearby Kayelekera uranium mine, the country’s biggest foreign investment.

“People are fearful because there are a lot of fish dying in the lake, so people are suggesting that they are dying because of the discharge from the Kayelekera mine,” said Harry Hudson Mwanyembe, the chairman for health and environment on Karonga’s district council.

The Australian company that owns the mine, Paladin Energy Ltd, says it has complied with all its environmental obligations and routinely monitors aquatic life in the Sere River and elsewhere. It denies any responsibility for the dead fish but its operation in Kayelekera has been beset by controversy since it was openedby the late president Bingu wa Mutharika in 2009.

The disputeslegal battles and public concern over the mine go to the heart of what many call Africa’s resource curse. As one of the continent’s poorest countries – ranking 174 of 187 countries in the UN human development index – Malawi desperately needs foreign exchange, as well as employment and infrastructure. But its pursuit of extractive wealth has been stymied by a lack of adequate regulation and transparency as well as by corruption, activists say.

In Kayelekera, the pitfalls associated with launching a multi-million dollar enterprise, with government backing, in an area where people lack access to both information and power, are evident in the many rumours, claims and counter-claims surrounding the mine’s operations……

resident of Kayelekera, Philip Simbowe, said the government had sold the lives of Malawians for cash. Continue reading

June 4, 2015 Posted by | environment, Malawi | Leave a comment

Abandon Great Lakes Nuclear Dump Plan – urge Great Lakes Waterkeepers and Waterkeeper Alliance

Lake-Huron,-Bruce-County,-OGreat Lakes Waterkeepers and Waterkeeper Alliance Urge Canadian Authorities to Ditch the Great Lakes Nuclear Dump http://waterkeeper.org/2015/05/27/great-lakes-waterkeepers-and-waterkeeper-alliance-urge-canadian-authorities-to-ditch-the-great-lakes-nuclear-dump/ May 27 2015 by Maia Raposo Groups Renew Plea to U.S. Secretary of State to Oppose Threat to Drinking Water Supply for 40 Million People

NEW YORK, NY – May 27, 2015 – Environmentalists in the Great Lakes Basin are opposed to a new report from a Canadian Joint Review Panel that has called for the support of the Canadian Minister of the Environment to approve a deep geological repository for nuclear waste in Kincardine, Ontario due to its proximity to drinking water supplies for 40 million people in the United States and Canada. The proposed plan from Ontario Power Generation (OPG) is to store underground radioactive nuclear waste less than one mile from the shores of Lake Huron. Canadian officials are getting closer to approving this hazardous project and could even fast track the authorization of a final license within the next few months.

Under the Binational Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement (amended in 2012), both Canada and the US acknowledge the importance of anticipating, preventing, and responding to threats to the waters of the Great Lakes.  Both countries share the responsibility and obligation to protect these shared waters from pollution.

“Great Lakes Waterkeepers and Waterkeeper Alliance oppose this project, which could threaten the drinking water supply of 40 million Americans and Canadians,” said Bob Burns, Detroit Riverkeeper. “We ask the U.S. State Department to stand with the citizens, local and state governments, and other stakeholders in the Great Lakes Basin whose voices have not yet been heard but who are at risk if the deep geological repository fails.”

Last September, the groups wrote to Secretary of State John Kerry and Canadian officials urging them to vote against this nuclear storage facility.

“With the Great Lakes containing 95% of the North America’s supply of fresh surface water, this is one of the worst possible locations for a permanent nuclear waste burial facility,” stated Doug Martz, St. Clair Channelkeeper. “Ontario Power Generation, the project proponent, did not investigate any other sites for this repository, but rather, selected the site based on the willingness of one local community. Furthermore, approval of this facility would set a devastating precedent for allowing other nuclear waste repositories to be located in the Great Lakes Basin.”

Marc Yaggi, executive director of Waterkeeper Alliance added: “The Great Lakes are suffering from failing infrastructure, contamination leaching from historical industrial and nuclear waste sites, ongoing agricultural pollution and invasive species. Intentionally siting a new toxic nuclear waste site in such close proximity to the largest fresh water system in the world would severely imperil the water security of two nations. The time to act is now, and we call again on Secretary Kerry to take action.”

The eight Waterkeeper organizations in the Great Lakes support proposed resolutions in the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate to urge government action to ensure that the Canadian Government does not permanently store nuclear waste underground in the Great Lakes Basin.

Contacts:
Tina Posterli, Waterkeeper Alliance, tposterli@waterkeeper.org, 516.526.9371
Doug Martz, St. Clair Channelkeeper, channelkeeper@wowway.com586.764.2443
Bob Burns, Detroit Riverkeeper, rlb315@comcast.net734.676.4626

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Waterkeeper Alliance is a global movement uniting more than 250 Waterkeeper organizations around the world and focusing citizen advocacy on issues that affect our waterways, from pollution to climate change. Waterkeepers patrol and protect more than 2 million square miles of rivers, streams and coastlines in the Americas, Europe, Australia, Asia and Africa. For more information please visit:www.waterkeeper.org

The 8 Waterkeeper organizations in the Great Lakes are: Buffalo Niagara Riverkeeper, Detroit Riverkeeper, Grand Traverse Baykeeper, Lake Erie Waterkeeper, Milwaukee Riverkeeper, St. Clair Channelkeeper, Upper St. Lawrence Riverkeeper and Yellow Dog Riverkeepe

June 4, 2015 Posted by | Canada, water | Leave a comment

70 years of cancer-causing nuclear pollution in St Louis

Caldicott,-Helen-4This week, internationally recognized physician Dr. Helen Caldicott reviewed documents and reports concerning the West Lake landfill. She stated in no uncertain terms that the health records and data clearly show that contaminants have been causing cancers in the affected region at elevated levels.

As the recipient of 21 honorary doctoral degrees for her work on the health consequences of exposure to nuclear material including the disasters at Three Mile Island, Chernobyl, and Fukushima, Caldicott is one of the world’s most-respected experts on the topic. With regard to the West Lake site, she concluded that ongoing health dangers demand that, “the [West Lake] site needs to be dealt with immediately. It needs to be cleaned-up this year.”

Radioactive site continues to plague St. Louis residents and region http://www.examiner.com/article/radioactive-site-continues-to-plague-st-louis-residents-and-region, 29 May 15 In North Saint Louis County, Missouri, in the City of Bridgeton, there is a ticking time bomb in the form of several contiguous landfills which contain radioactive waste and all the “daughter products” associated with weapons-grade uranium processing. Most notably, the site in question, the West Lake landfill, has the largest concentration in the nation of one of these highly dangerous daughter products.

ThoriumIn a 2013 report entitled, The West Lake Landfill: A Radioactive Legacy of the Nuclear Arms Race, Robert Alvarez states, “Of significance is the fact that the largest estimated amount of Thorium-230, a long-lived, highly radiotoxic element, is present at West Lake — more than any other U.S. nuclear weapons storage or disposal site.” Continue reading

June 1, 2015 Posted by | environment, radiation, Reference, USA | 1 Comment

Fukushima food coming to a grocery near you?

plate-radiationHow Fukushima Produce Is Making Its Way Into International Stores, Before It’s News,Wednesday, May 27, 2015 It is being reported that tainted food from Fukushima, Ibaraki, Gumma, and Chiba is making its way into local supermarkets in Taiwan due to the irresponsibility of mislabeling. What’s more, these food products were banned in Taiwan since March of 2011.

The first question is: Why are food products from the concerned Japanese prefectures surrounding Fukushima mislabelled?

The second question is: Why is Japan attempting to foist its unsafe and inferior radioactive foods on Taiwan?

Instead of humbly acquiescing to Taiwan’s wishes, Japan takes an aggressive approach even threatening WTO arbitration.

Taiwan’s Food and Drug Administration said the latest enforcement was in line with radiation safety management practices that other countries have put in place on Japanese food imports following the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster.

It said it “is necessary to protect the safety of food consumption” for Taiwanese.

But Japan is protesting the move, with the government warning that it may escalate the matter to the World Trade Organization, potentially deepening the conflict between Taipei and Tokyo……..

they are now still dealing with the Fukushima meltdown(s) — a set of intractable nuclear challenges which may have no practical solutions. That means that those prefectures surrounding Fukushima may always have an environment suffering from a proliferation of radionuclides. What exactly are radionuclides?

radionuclide or radioactive nuclide is a nuclide that is radioactive. Also referred to as a radioisotopeor radioactive isotope, it is an isotope with an unstable nucleus, characterized by excess energy available to be imparted either to a newly created radiation particle within the nucleus or via internal conversion. During this process, the radionuclide is said to undergo radioactive decay, resulting in the emission of gamma ray(s) and/or subatomic particles such as alpha or beta particles.[1] These emissions constitute ionizing radiation. (Source: Wikipedia — Radionuclide)

Radionuclides, and especially the ionizing radiation which they emit, are certainly not something that anyone would want in their back yard, much less in their food. Nevertheless, Japan feels it can maintain the same policies that got them into this calamitous predicament. Hopefully, Taiwan will not relent to demands so unreasonable they strain credulity. After all, Japan needs to learn some critical lessons for their own benefit as well as for their trading partners.http://beforeitsnews.com/health/2015/05/how-fukushima-produce-is-making-its-way-into-international-stores-2575244.html

June 1, 2015 Posted by | environment, Fukushima 2015 | Leave a comment

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