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13.5 tons of water hourly in effort to cool Fukushima nuclear reactor No. 2

Boric acid to prevent recriticality, Japan Times,8 Feb 12,  Reactor No. 2 heats up, gets more water Kyodo Workers at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant increased the amount of water injected into reactor 2 on Tuesday to the highest level since the plant achieved cold shutdown in December as concerns grew over rising temperatures at the bottom of the pressure vessel….

Tepco said it increased the amount of injected water, some of which contained boric acid, at 4:24 a.m. Tuesday. Reactor 2 is now being cooled with 13.5 tons of water per hour, up from 10.5 tons. The boric acid is being used to prevent a sustained nuclear chain reaction, or recriticality.

Nuclear disaster minister Goshi Hosono told reporters that Tepco is
making every effort to lower the temperature….

February 8, 2012 Posted by | Japan, safety, water | Leave a comment

Uranium company’s bribes to law-makers can backfire

Lawmaker: Trip to France dissuaded him on uranium mining, Pilot 7 Feb 12, “……..The bulk of the largesse directed at Cosgrove was the $12,449 spent by Virginia Uranium, the company lobbying to establish a uranium mine in Pittsylvania County. The
company sent Cosgrove and several other lawmakers to visit a mine site in France.The purpose of the trip, Cosgrove said, was to reassure the Virginia legislators that uranium could be mined safely with no chance of contaminating Lake Gaston, a major source of Hampton Roads’ drinking water that lies downstream from the proposed mine site.

But the trip persuaded him of the exact opposite, Cosgrove said. “They never showed us beyond any doubt that there couldn’t be some catastrophic effect on our drinking water,” he said. As a result, “I came back thinking that uranium mining is probably not in the best
interest of Hampton Roads.”…

February 8, 2012 Posted by | USA, water | Leave a comment

It’s getting hotter in Fukushima’s supposedly “cold shutdown” nuclear plant

Rising temperatures trigger concern at Japan’s Fukushima nuclear plant Telegraph UK 7 Feb 12, Water temperatures at Japan’s damaged Fukushima nuclear power plant have risen more than 20 degrees Celsius over the past week.  By Danielle Demetriou in Tokyo 07 Feb 2012 Concerns are growing in relation to conditions at the plant, in northeast Japan, which was declared in a state of cold shutdown in December last year. Continue reading

February 8, 2012 Posted by | - Fukushima 2011, Japan, safety | Leave a comment

Polynesia’s radioactive pollution from France’s nuclear bomb tests

France’s upper chamber approved a motion that provides for Mururoa and Fangataufa, currently under the control of the defence ministry, to be restored to the Polynesian public domain, though the bill stands little chance of becoming law. “We realise that they are the two largest nuclear dumps in an ocean environment. But in Oceania you cannot separate human beings from their ecosystem,” says the author of the bill, Senator Richard Tuheiva. “Restitution [of the atolls] is a way of soothing the psychological wounds [caused by the nuclear era].”

about 5kg of plutonium is trapped in the sediment at the bottom of the Mururoa and Fangataufa lagoons, ……. There is no question of them returning to “normal” use.


France urged to clean up deadly waste from its nuclear tests in Polynesia, Guardian UK,  7 Feb 2012, 193 nuclear tests carried out on the Mururoa and Fangataufa atolls between 1966 and 1996 have left a dangerous legacy. Continue reading

February 8, 2012 Posted by | - plutonium, environment, OCEANIA | Leave a comment

Conflict of interest pro nuclear councillor’s nuclear investments

Pro-nuclear energy town councillor’s firm had 700 million yen in nuke plant contracts, Mainichi Daily News,  February 7, 2012 TAKAHAMA, Fukui– A town assembly member here calling for the continuation of nuclear power is also president of a company that has received at least 700 million yen in nuclear-related construction contracts, it has been learned.

Akio Awano, 62, is vice-speaker of the municipal assembly of Takahama, which hosts a Kansai Electric Power Co. nuclear plant. He is also part of a local organization promoting nuclear power plants.

According to the Fukui Prefectural Government and other sources, Awano’s firm, a metal processing company, has around 15 employees and earned about 200 million yen in fiscal 2010. It has an office in the Takahama nuclear plant and has expanded its business on a diet of nuclear plant-related construction.   …….

February 8, 2012 Posted by | Japan, secrets,lies and civil liberties | Leave a comment

England’s Conservative Party – a shambles of Climate Change Denialists

In the main, the Tories are a coalition of climate change sceptics ….. Despite the fact that 60 per cent of voters think it is ‘right’ to ‘subsidise wind farms to encourage more use of wind power’.

Far from being ‘intermittent’ wind turbines operate between 70-80 per cent of the time, currently providing power for the equivalent of 3.3 million homes.

Climate change sceptics and rural romantics – the Tories are a shambles on renewable energy Left Foot Forward, by Kevin Meagher, February 7th 2012  It took less than 24 hours from the resignation of Chris Huhne for the Tories to strike. A hundred and one Tory backbenchers have written to David Cameron calling for an end to public subsidies designed to support Britain’s wind power industry.

They claim that subsidies should be drastically cut and draft planning guidance strengthened to make it easier for objectors to block wind farm schemes. Continue reading

February 8, 2012 Posted by | climate change, politics, UK | Leave a comment

The facts on renewable energy in Southern USA

Mythbusting facts about renewable energy in the southern U.S., Energy World, By Lauren Glickman , February 7, 2012 
Renewable energy sources (like wind power) and energy efficiency can help the southern U.S.
 meet what is expected to be growing future electricity demand, but a lingering set of myths is hampering their development in the region, according to a new study, “Myths and Facts About Electricity in the U.S. South,” by researchers from Duke and Georgia Tech. These misimpressions could have serious consequences–the South’s population is expected to increase by 28 percent over the next 20 years, and wise use of resources will be needed to satisfy energy demand while reducing energy-related pollution.

The researchers used economic and energy modeling to examine the myths. To avoid repeating the myths and thereby giving them further credence, I’m going to list some selected findings with the most significance for wind power as a set of “mythbusting facts” instead:

Future growth in electricity demand in the South can be met by renewable energy and efficiency:  Continue reading

February 8, 2012 Posted by | renewable, USA | Leave a comment

Call for independent radiation monitoring of nuclear plant in San Clemente

Group Wants New Radiation Monitors In San Clemente, Concerns About ‘Information Flow’ From San Onofre Nuclear Plant, KPBS, February 7, 2012, By Ed JoyceInspectors at the plant are trying to find signs of a leak at the Unit 3 reactor. The leak forcedSouthern California Edison, which operates the facility, to take the reactor offline. The other reactor, Unit 2, was already offline for scheduled maintenance and refueling.

……..members of an environmental group want the San Clemente City Council to demand public release of inspection findings before the two reactors are restarted.

Gary Headrick is the founder of San Clemente Green. He plans to bring up several items at tonight’s San Clemente City Council meeting.

“We have some immediate concerns about wanting to get an independent radiation monitoring system in San Clemente,” said Headrick. “That way we won’t have to rely on the sources from the industry to tell the public exactly what’s going on. Maybe they have a conflict of interest and they don’t want to share all the information right away, that’s what we saw happen in Japan and information was delayed getting to the public.”

He also wants the City of San Clemente to pay for an epidemiological study of cancer trends near the nuclear plant……

February 8, 2012 Posted by | politics, USA | Leave a comment

Why is Iran singled out on the nuclear issue?

What exactly is Iran’s crime? Guardian UK, Anna Romano, 7 Feb 12,  (EU risks oil embargo, 27 January)? Its burgeoning nuclear activities are not in contravention of international law.

There are several countries that have nuclear weapons and are not subject to scrutiny and inspection from the IAEA, most notably Israel. It remains a source of contention that this institution is prepared to tolerate Israel’s policy of deliberate ambiguity.

Additionally, countries such as India and Pakistan could never have obtained their nuclear capability without the consent of the US. Neither of these nations is a signed up member of the nuclear non-proliferation treaty, while Iran is.

Iran has little reason to trust the west. Its first more or less democratically elected leader, Mossadegh was toppled from power in a CIA coup in 1953, with Britain’s blessing and support.

Iran’s real offence is to strongly criticise the west’s double standards regarding foreign policy in the region and to remain in control of its resources. The crux of the matter lies within this power structure, and so the west must support wars in the Middle East every two or three years to preserve’s Israel’s position as the only viable, militarised nuclear state in the region. Indeed, the aim of recently imposed sanctions may well be to go even further and covertly instigate regime change, illegal under international law.

Reference to Iran’s’ repressive government has little leverage in light of Saudi Arabia’s record and its repression of democracy in Bahrain. David Cameron’s recent visit to the region to sell more weapons to Saudis reflects this amorality.

February 8, 2012 Posted by | Iran, politics international | Leave a comment

Progress Energy to continue getting nuclear advance, “dumb money”, from customers

Senators reject efforts to repeal so-called ‘nuclear tax’, Miami Herald, 7 Feb 12, Some call it a nuclear tax. Others call it a fee. Whatever the name, Florida legislators decided Monday they don’t want to take it off the electricity bills of Progress Energy and Florida Power & Light customers — even though the companies gave legislators no guarantees that they will build the nuclear plants the money is being collected to construct.

The Senate Communications, Energy and Utilities Committee voted down a proposal by Sen. Mike Fasano, R-New Port Richey, Monday to repeal the so-called nuclear cost recovery clause embedded in customer bills. Continue reading

February 8, 2012 Posted by | politics, USA | Leave a comment

Safety and financial woes of USA nuclear reactors

the Public Utilities Commission last week denied a request by Pacific Gas & Electric to bill customers $85 million for its attempt to extend the license of Diablo Canyon, California’s other active nuclear plant. 

More Concerns Over San Onofre Safety, San Diego Reader, By Dave Rice  February 7, 2012  Concerns about safety and the durability of components at San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station are continuing to surface as the plant approaches a full week of complete shutdown. Continue reading

February 8, 2012 Posted by | business and costs, USA | Leave a comment

Virginia Uranium’ s lavish gifts to law-makers

Va. Uranium tops in 2011 gifts to state lawmakers, By David Sherfinski-The Washington Times, February 7, 2012 Virginia Uranium, which is pushing to mine a 119 million-pound deposit in southside Pittsyvania County, gave more than $120,000 in gifts and trips last year to state lawmakers — tops in Virginia — according to figures released Tuesday by the nonpartisan Virginia Public Access Project.

Lawmakers reported receiving a total of nearly a quarter million dollars’ worth of gifts.

The top five donors were Va. Uranium ($120,336) , Dominion Power ($16,916), Jonnie R. Williams Sr ($15,233). Alexander B. McMurtrie Jr. ($12,322) and the State of Taiwan ($11,000.)

Virginia Uranium flew 15 lawmakers to examine mines on fact-finding missions in France and/or Canada. Continue reading

February 8, 2012 Posted by | politics, Uranium, USA | Leave a comment

The daily $1million costs of closed nuclear reactor

Nuclear Plant Still Shut Down, Costs Mount,Mission Viejo Patch, 7 Feb 12 A plant spokesman said Monday that the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station is continuing in shutdown mode.By Adam Townsend, February 6, 2012  The San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station remains in shutdown mode and is producing no electricity. As crews are assessing and planning repairs to leaks at Unit 3 at the plant,

the unplanned shutdown is costing Southern California Edison from $600,000 to $1 million per day.…..It was a week ago when operators detected a steam leak of radioactive water from the heat exchanger tubes inside the steam generator, which makes steam to turn turbines that make the electricity. The heat exchanger tubes number in the thousands and are filled with super-heated, high-pressure, radioactive water. A Nuclear Regulatory Commission spokesman said last week that several hundred tubes in Unit 2 showed wearing on the inside; two were shot, and almost 900 others had significant thinning.

The components are only one to two years old…….

February 8, 2012 Posted by | general | Leave a comment

Lynas rare earths company suits greedy politicians, not the Malaysian people

Lynas plant a done deal from the start , malaysiakini,  Feb 7, 2012 “……Manjit Bhatia: These protests against Lynas are very worthwhile. The Lynas project should never have been given the green light in the first place, let alone a temporary licence by the Umno-BN regime.

What’s really galling is that the regime went ahead with the latter despite Lynas failing to provide all of the mandatory guarantees needed. Worse, though: were there any public consultations about the project to start with? I feel the protests at Lynas aren’t big enough to put sufficient political pressure on the company to reconsider its operations…..

If it’s not good enough for Australia, it shouldn’t be good enough for any other place on earth. If the bulk of Malaysians do not join their Lynas protestors and stop the project dead in its tracks and soon, then you’ve lost the chance forever – unless Pakatan Rakyat wins government and scuttles the project entirely.

Although Malaysians have to cop a huge compensation bill to Lynas, it’ll be worth it. Just wear the fiscal pain for a decade.

Pemerhati: This is the price Malaysians pay for electing corrupt and greedy Umno thieves as their leaders……

 if waste disposal is so safe and environmentally friendly, why don’t Lynas do it in Australia? Why shift all the way here?….

CiViC: The concern now is exposing our people, our land to radioactive waste, radiation and pollution. This is not the people’s needs.

Thousands of people have protested, and still the dirty corrupt BN government pushes it through. And please don’t start with economic gains and such bull, there are no gains here since Lynas needs not pay tax, and the guarantee they have posted is not even enough to clean the plant itself, what more pollution beyond that….

February 8, 2012 Posted by | Malaysia, politics | Leave a comment

Social ownership of South Africa’s renewable energy sector

Renewable energy plans can create 50,000 jobs (With Video), Business Live 7 Feb 12 The Department of Energy will seek to ensure that government commits R22 billion over the next five years to green projects and aims to create 50,000 jobs in the renewable energy sector. This was revealed by Energy Minister Dipuo Peters who was speaking at a National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) conference on Monday, which was looking at social ownership of SA’s renewable energy sector.

“We want to ensure that the state, through its entities, invests R22 billion in green projects with a commitment of R3 billion towards local manufacturing in the next five years, and at the same time create 50,000 jobs in the renewable energy sector,” Peters said.

She also emphasised that foreign companies can invest in SA’s energy sector, but they must bring with them their technology so that local companies can adopt it.

“The renewable energy drive in China could succeed because companies relocated; based in China, where intimately they perfected the technology and now they’re exporting the technology to SA. So we are also saying as part of our requirement for localisation, let us insist
that these companies that want to invest here, they must bring this
technology to SA.” …

February 8, 2012 Posted by | renewable, South Africa | Leave a comment