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Fukushima nuclear reactors leaking directly into sea?

exclamation-Alert: Top Japan nuclear official suggests Fukushima reactors “leaking directly into sea”… not mixing with groundwater and getting diluted — Expert: Contamination flowing from plant will be carried away to North America’s west coast

Jiji Presshttp://enenews.com/alert-top-level-japan-official-publicly-suggests-multiple-fukushima-reactors-are-leaking-directly-into-the-sea-its-not-mixing-with-groundwater-and-getting-diluted-expert-contamination-f Oct. 16, 2013: Tepco’s toxic water failures pitiful: NRA[…] Tepco is pumping up groundwater and has injected a water-stopping agent into the ground near the plant’s port in order to curb the flow of radioactive groundwater into the sea. Despite such efforts, the levels of cesium-137 in seawater samples collected between the water intakes for reactors 1 and 2 inside the port rose to around 100 becquerels per liter this month from around 10 becquerels between late June and early July. […] Radioactive water from the damaged reactors “may be leaking directly into the sea instead of mixing with groundwater before making its way into the sea,” [Nuclear Regulation Authority Commissioner Toyoshi] Fuketa said. […]
Vladimir Kovbasyuk, Russian Hydrometeorological Expert, Oct. . 16, 2013: “We analyzed the problems several years ago, when the 2011 earthquake and tornado hit the Fukushima nuclear plant. Radioactive waters will first be carried away to the west coast of North America and only then, on intermingling with other ocean waters, may they return to the Russian coast. Currently, we are measuring radiation levels, and we’ve registered no excess radiation thus far.” […]

It appears Fuketa has provided the answer to the ‘mystery’ discussed on NHK’s ‘Nuclear Watch’ earlier thisyear: Fukushima Mystery? TV: Japan expert says radiation levels in ocean too high to be explained by groundwater flow alone — Must be coming from “other contamination routes” entering Pacific — “Devastating impact” to come? (VIDEO)

See also: Nuclear Expert: Fukushima melted fuel is drifting in ocean and onto land, lacking any containment — It ends up on coastline and blows into communities — People get an exceptional dose — Health harm will go on for thousands, if not tens of thousands of years (AUDIO)

October 18, 2013 Posted by | Fukushima 2013, Japan, oceans, water | Leave a comment

Huge spike in groundwater radiation under Fukushima nuclear reactor No 1

strontium 90Strontium readings spike 6,500-fold in one day  Water radiation soars at Fukushima No. 1 Japan Times JIJI, AFP-JIJI  18 Oct 13 FUKUSHIMA Radiation levels in groundwater under Tokyo Electric Power Co.’s Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant are soaring, Tepco said Friday after taking samples from an observation well.

Tepco said 400,000 becquerels per liter of beta ray-emitting substances such as strontium were detected in water sampled Thursday from the well located some 15 meters from a storage tank that leaked about 300 tons of highly radioactive water in August.

The level of becquerels, a record high for water in that well, was up 6,500-fold from the 61 becquerels found Wednesday.

Tepco was planning to pump groundwater up from different wells about 100 meters from the leaky tank for release into the Pacific before the water flows into the damaged reactor buildings and becomes heavily contaminated with radioactive materials.

But that plan appears in jeopardy because the sharp increase in the levels of radioactive materials in the observation well suggest the radioactive groundwater is spreading.

By law, water containing beta particle-emitting substances exceeding certain levels cannot be released into the sea. The upper limit is set at 30 becquerels per liter for strontium-90 and 60 becquerels for cesium-134.

Tepco also said water collected Thursday from a drainage ditch near the leaky tank contained 34,000 becquerels of beta particle-emitting substances per liter, compared with 2,300 becquerels the day before……Officials said Thursday they will solicit proposals from both domestic and overseas nuclear experts and firms on how best to scrap the ruined reactors at Fukushima No. 1…….http://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2013/10/18/national/water-radiation-soars-at-fukushima-no-1/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+ja

October 18, 2013 Posted by | Fukushima 2013, Japan, water | 1 Comment

Russia’s control over American uranium sites

Moscow’s American uranium Politico, By MATT BAKER | 10/18/13 The state-owned Russian nuclear energy company that built Iran’s nuclear reactor in Bushehr is about to finalize a transaction that will give Russia absolute control over one of America’s largest uranium mining sites.

On Oct. 18, nuclear energy juggernaut Rosatom will complete a corporate deal giving it 100 percent control over Canada-based uranium mining company Uranium One, including the company’s U.S. operations in Wyoming, the epicenter of U.S. uranium production. Moscow’s acquisition of Uranium One will also provide Rosatom — the world’s leading builder of nuclear power plants — with uranium exploration rights in Arizona, Colorado, and Utah……

Rosatom’s nuclear projects also include ventures with China and Venezuela, two countries with less-than-friendly relations with the United States. Russian news agencies also quoted Syrian president Bashar al-Assad in May 2010 as saying that he discussed with then-Russian President Dmitry Medvedev the possibility of building nuclear power plants in Syria.

To put it mildly, with a client roster like this, questions abound regarding Rosatom’s acquisition of Uranium One. When Rosatom acquired its first controlling shares in 2010, the deal came under congressional fire. Representatives Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fla), Spencer Bachus (R-Ala.), Peter King (R-N.Y.), and Buck McKeon (R-Calif.) penned a letter to then-Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner warning that “signing over control of this U.S. uranium processing facility to the Russian government unnecessarily jeopardizes U.S. security interests.”……

Fast-forward three years, and the proposed transfer of 100 percent control of Uranium One to Rosatom has barely elicited a peep from Congress or the administration. Nor has it raised an eyebrow in Ottawa. In March, Rosatom received approval from the Supreme Court of Ontario, Canada. …..

While the American regulatory regime is a trusted system, the regime in Moscow is not. Russia has a history of transferring dangerous materials and technologies to rogue regimes, and Rosatom, according to a 2007 report on nuclear nonproliferation by the U.S. General Accounting Office (GAO), “denied [GAO’s] request for access to facilities under its control.”……..

given Russia’s track record, can we trust Rosatom to play by our rules?
 http://www.politico.com/story/2013/10/moscows-american-uranium-98472.html#ixzz2i9L6m700

October 18, 2013 Posted by | politics international, Uranium | Leave a comment

End of plans for Levy nuclear power plant, termination of Crystal River nuclear plant

thumbs-downDuke Energy’s revised agreement ends nuclear power plant plans ww.power-eng.com/articles/2013/10/duke-energys-revised-agreement-ends-nuclear-power-plant-plans.html Oct 17, 2013The Florida Public Service Commission approved a Revised and Restated Settlement Agreement that officially ends plans for Duke Energy Florida (NYSE: DUK) to build the Levy nuclear power plant and allows the retirement the shuttered Crystal River nuclear plant.

As part of the revised agreement, recoverable costs for Crystal River Unit 3 will be capped at $1.4 billion, with stockholders covering the first $295 million. Commissioners said in a release that when a plant is retired, the company has a right, by law, to recover the remaining costs from its customers.

Duke will continue to collect fixed amounts for costs associated with the canceled Levy nuclear plant until 2017. However, customers will earn refunds that were in the original 2012 agreement, including $129 million this year, $139 million in 2014, $50 million in 2015 and $70 million in 2016. Customers will also receive a refund of $835 million from insurance proceeds over the Crystal River unit by the end of 2014.

October 18, 2013 Posted by | business and costs, USA | Leave a comment

Slow progress on decontamination of Fukushima, most of the budget still unused

Ministry fails to use 77% of Fukushima decontamination budget; TEPCO refuses to pay Asahi Shimbun, 18 Oct 13, By TAKUYA KITAZAWA/ Staff Writer The Environment Ministry has failed to use 76.6 percent, or 247.2 billion yen, of its budget to decontaminate radioactive areas around the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant, the Board of Audit said.

Progress has been slow because opposition from local residents is making it difficult for the ministry to secure places to temporarily store the contaminated soil and debris collected in the work.

The ministry faces another problem: Tokyo Electric Power Co., the operator of the stricken Fukushima plant, refuses to cover all the costs of the decontamination work as required under law.

The Board of Audit investigated the ministry’s budget of about 322.8 billion yen ($3.2 billion) for decontamination work for the period until March 2013, the end of fiscal 2012.

The results were released on Oct. 16………http://ajw.asahi.com/article/0311disaster/fukushima/AJ201310170058

October 18, 2013 Posted by | - Fukushima 2011, environment, Japan | Leave a comment

Renewable energy investments already making good returns

piggy-ban-renewablesRenewable Energy Stocks that are Already Paying Out  Oil Price. com By The Energy Report | Thu, 17 October 2013 Alternative energy is a long-term investment, but returns are already rolling in, says Edward Guinness, co-manager of the Guinness Atkinson Alternative Energy Fund, which is up a whopping 67% year to date. Before you know it, rooftop solar could be as ubiquitous as mobile phones, and developments in wind energy are already creating a compelling value proposition for energy consumers—especially in Europe, where energy prices are high. Learn about the holdings driving growth for Guinness’ fund in this interview with The Energy Report……http://oilprice.com/Finance/investing-and-trading-reports/Renewable-Energy-Stocks-that-are-Already-Paying-Out.html

October 18, 2013 Posted by | 2 WORLD, business and costs, renewable | Leave a comment

Energy storage promises to revolutionise renewable energy

The PUC’s big storage decision will boost renewable energy production My desert.com October 17th, 2013 | by K Kaufmann My Twitter feed and email box are lighting up with big news that the California Public Utilities Commission has voted to approve an order requiring the state’s three big utilities to start procuring renewable energy storage technology, with the goal of having 1,325 megawatts of storage on the grid by 2020.

You can read the full text of the original proposed decision, as released Sept. 3, here.

Both Southern California Edison and Pacific Gas & Electric will be required to procure a total of 580 megawatts of storage, with 310 megawatts dedicated to transmission, 185 megawatts on distribution and 85 megawatts going to the consumer market, which presumably means distributed generation or rooftop.

San Diego Gas & Electric will be responsible for putting on 165 megawatts of storage, with an 80-55-30 split on the transmission, distribution and customer requirements. The three utilities have until Jan. 1, 2014 to file individual applications on how they will run their first solicitations for energy storage facilities.

Those are the quick basics. Expect plenty of press and discussion on this decision. Its potential impacts are huge — in terms of providing a big push for more research and investment in storage technology in the state and in pushing California to go beyond its current 33 percent renewable energy target. If renewable power can be stored for use when the wind is not blowing and sun isn’t shining, then the potential for clean energy development will be limitless……http://voices.mydesert.com/2013/10/17/the-pucs-big-storage-decision-will-boost-renewable-energy-production/

October 18, 2013 Posted by | energy storage, USA | 1 Comment

India – PAC seeks more autonomy for nuclear safety regulator to instill public trust

…The panel was shocked to learn that not only are the fines under current regulation as low as Rs 500, the penal provisions have not been invoked in the 50 years that the department of atomic energy has conducted operations….

http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/PAC-seeks-more-autonomy-for-nuclear-safety-regulator-to-instill-public-trust/articleshow/24309655.cms

NEW DELHI: Pointing to “grave weaknesses” in India’s laws intended to prevent nuclear accidents, the public accounts committee (PAC) has recommended the proposed nuclear safety regulator should be made more autonomous to inspire public trust.

In its report on a nuclear safety audit conducted after a radiation exposure in Delhi’s Mayapuri area in 2010 that claimed one life and injured seven persons, the parliamentary panel said the nuclear safety regulatory authority (NSRA) bill needs significant changes.

The panel said that the bill’s clauses relating to removal of the regulator’s chairperson, power of the Centre to issue directions and, most crucially, the government’s option to supersede the authority, need to be deleted or drastically amended.

The report also notes that authorities admitted that it is not possible to regulate some 57,000-odd X-ray machines that are unregistered. The panel said it hopes the government will soon implement a roadmap to regulate or register medical X-ray units.

On the NSRA bill, the report goes on to say, “The department of atomic energy should seriously re-examine provisions of the bill and take necessary steps to ensure the nuclear regulator becomes independent and credible and at par with regulators in other nations.”

The committee said the legal status of India’s atomic energy regulatory board is that of a subordinate body unlike in countries like Australia, Canada, France and the US that have independent and empowered regulators.

“The failure to have an autonomous regulator is fraught with grave risks as bought out by the commission that examined the Fukushima nuclear accident,” the panel said.

Continue reading

October 18, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The Nuclear Odyssey of Naoto Kan, Japan’s Prime Minister during Fukushima

…But he noted that already a new energy prospect is visible off the Fukushima coast, where a floating wind turbine is being tested. It has been dubbed “Fukushima mirai,” which means “Fukushima future” in Japanese. “In Japan,” Kan said, “we see that even without nuclear power plants we can actually supply energy to meet our demands.”…

Having led Japan through the 2011 nuclear crisis, the elder statesman is now campaigning for a world without nuclear power

On March 10, 2011, Prime Minister Naoto Kan felt assured that nuclear power was safe and vital for Japan. By the evening of the next day, following the massive Tohoku earthquake, the ensuing tsunami and the beginnings of the crisis at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, he had changed his thinking “180 degrees.”

Kan could not help but wondering how much worse the Fukushima meltdowns might get on the dark nights spent in his office after March 11, 2011. “What was going through my mind at the time?” Kan said through a translator during a public event at the 92nd Street YMCA in New York City on October 8. “How much worse is this going to get, and how can we stop this from getting even worse?”

Kan commissioned a report for the worst-case scenario from the Japan Atomic Energy Commission, which confirmed his worst fears: a potential evacuation area reaching as far as 250 kilometers from the stricken power plant—a zone of exclusion that would have reached all the way to Tokyo and affected roughly 50 million people. The potential for disaster was so great because the Fukushima area houses a total of 10 reactors and 11 pools that store used nuclear fuel. By March 15, three of those reactors were experiencing at least partial meltdowns, and four, thanks to a spent-fuel pool that also lost water cooling of the still-hot rods, had suffered hydrogen explosions.

Gruff and dark-haired, Kan is a circumspect man, with a history of admitting mistakes and showing impatience with those who do not. In 1996, as Japan’s Minister of Health, Labor and Welfare, he apologized for the government’s responsibility in allowing blood bearing the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) to spread among hospitals in years past. In 2010, as prime minister from the Democratic Party of Japan, he apologized to South Korea for Japan’s annexation of that country a century earlier. Now the one-time nuclear supporter is campaigning for an end to power from fission. “There is no other disaster that would affect 50 million people—maybe a war,” Kan observed. “There is only one way to eliminate such accidents, which is to get rid of all nuclear power plants.”

The earthquake and tsunami killed more than 15,000 people, whereas the multiple meltdowns at Fukushima have not caused any fatalities to date and are “unlikely” to cause any detectable health effects, such as increased cancers, according to the United Nations Scientific Committee on the Effects of Atomic Radiation. But even today, more than two and a half years after the earthquake, the nuclear disaster is ongoing. Water contaminated with radioactive particles from the meltdowns continues to reach the Pacific Ocean, and radiation levels at the stricken power plant recently spiked. Typhoons, earthquakes and other natural disasters continue to threaten further disasters at the site and a total teardown may take decades. “The cause of this catastrophe is, of course, the earthquake and the tsunami but, additionally, the fact that we were not prepared,” Kan said. “We did not anticipate such a huge natural disaster could happen.” He also noted that the information supplied to him by the nuclear power industry in the aftermath of the meltdowns proved false.

Continue reading

October 18, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Senior adviser for Fukushima cleanup says foreign assistance needed

http://japandailypress.com/senior-adviser-for-fukushima-cleanup-says-foreign-assistance-needed-1738025/

Oct 17, 2013

Barbara Singer Thomas Judge, Lady Judge, by Alexander McIntyre, 21 October 2010 - NPG x135765 - © Alexander McIntyre

Image source ; http://www.npg.org.uk/collections/search/portraitLarge/mw216053/Barbara-Singer-Thomas-Judge-Lady-Judge

 

cash-flow

One of the senior advisers of the Fukushima cleanup said that Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO) needs foreign assistance. The utility operator may have already sought foreign assistance, but the ones currently available seem to be not enough to ensure that the defunct nuclear plant causes no more trouble.

“They need to have a number of foreign firms to come in and assist them with the cleanup,” said Lady Barbara Judge in an interview in Tokyo. Lady Judge, a lawyer by profession, was in charge of the U.K. Atomic Energy Authority (UKAEA) from 2004 until 2010. During her tenure as head of the agency, a number of nuclear plants were decommissioned while overseeing the cleanup of plutonium and uranium leak at the Thermal Oxide Reprocessing Plant (THORP) at Sellafield in Cumbria of northwestern England. She currently holds a position of Chairman Emeritus at the UKAEA.

Lady Judge also said that the incidents happening in Fukushima are not surprising, admitting that nuclear plant cleanups in the U.K. also had a number of unforeseen problems. “When people built nuclear power plants, they never thought of decommissioning,” the 66-year old lawyer and lobbyist reminded. “This is a very challenging job in every country.”

Despite the series of controversies hitting TEPCO, Lady Judge, echoing other nuclear experts, doubts that the latest leaks from Fukushima nuclear plant impose public health risks. But she acknowledged that the current events are not helping TEPCO’s reputation. “For TEPCO right now, it’s a question of learning as you go.” She also believes that the utility should be allowed to resume operating two reactors at the Kashiwazaki-Kariwa, the largest nuclear power plant in the world, in Niigata Prefecture in order to improve its financial status.

October 18, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Greenpeace petition.. Stop this ridiculous situation now! Free the Arctic 30!

 

This week Anthony (below) along with Peter, Paul, Hernan, Anne, Mannes, Iain, David, Jonathan, Colin, Ruslan, Alexandre, Francesco, Cristian, Ana Paula, Ekaterina, Gizem, Camila, Sini, Tomasz, Marco, Phil, Faiza, Dima, Alexandra, Frank, Denis, Kieron, Roman and Andrey, were in court again. Sadly, the judge refused to release them on bail.

 

Anthony

 

It has been 30 days since Russian agents stormed the Arctic Sunrise and arrested all 30 people on board. It has been 30 days of injustice but pressure is mounting.

 

This week, 11 Nobel Peace Prize winners including Desmond Tutu and Betty Williams wrote to President Putin to ask him to ensure the piracy charges against the Arctic 30 are dropped. In a personal phone call German Chancellor Angela Merkel expressed her concern over the imprisonment of the 30 and hoped the case would be resolved soon.

 

The UK’s foreign minister William Hague has spoken to his Russian counterpart and the Prime Minister David Cameron said in parliament this week that he’s asking for daily updates on their situation. They join a growing list of senior politicians, including from Brazil, the US and the Netherlands, who have spoken out publicly about the Arctic 30.

 

Public pressure is working and will make a difference. It’s critical that we make sure the fate of our friends and fellow activists doesn’t fall off the news agenda – and we can all help.

 

Please share the picture above on Facebook and forward this email to your friends, telling them they can email the Russian ambassador by going to www.greenpeace.org/freethearctic30

 

Let’s keep doing all we can to get them out,

 

Fran

 

PS it’s difficult to write on your own arm when you’re on your own in a cold Russian jail cell. Spelling slip-ups will always be forgiven 🙂

October 18, 2013 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Nuclear news this week

Christina Macpherson's websites & blogs

Christina Macpherson’s websites & blogs

Fukushima – record high levels of radiation in one area of a drainage ditch, following  Typhoon Wipha 2 days ago.

UK: questions raised as the government approves Chinese investment in its nuclear project, effectively giving China control over UK’s new nuclear program.

World Health Organisation under fire from 3 former UN officials who claim that WHO’s latest, unsigned, very brief  interim report on Iraq birth defects is based on inadequate research, and conflicts with previous, more detailed studies, that indicted a link with depleted uranium.

Renewable energy predicted to be the world’s  major growth energy investment. Also Norway adds a boost as its new government looks to investing much of the Norwegian sovereign wealth fundinto renewable energy projects across the world.

October 18, 2013 Posted by | Christina's notes | 2 Comments

Record high radiation in Fukushima No 1 drainage ditch

Radiation level in Fukushima No. 1 ditch hits record highJapan Times, 17 Oct 13,FUKUSHIMA – The highest level yet of beta ray-emitting radioactive substances, including strontium, has been detected at one point in a drainage ditch at the crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant where measurements are regularly taken, Tokyo Electric Power Co. said Thursday.

According to Tepco, a water sample taken Wednesday at a point in the ditch some 300 meters from the ocean was found to contain 1,400 becquerels per liter of beta ray-emitting radioactive substances, the highest level ever detected at that location……

Radiation levels also hit record highs in water samples collected Wednesday at three upstream points in the drainage ditch, which passes close to the storage tank from which highly radioactive water spilled in August, with the amount of beta ray-emitting radioactive substances ranging from 2,000 to 2,300 becquerels per liter.

Tepco said it was unable to take seawater samples near the exit of the ditch because of bad weather.http://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2013/10/17/national/radiation-level-in-fukushima-no-1-ditch-hits-record-high/#.UmGNJdJJMgs

October 18, 2013 Posted by | Fukushima 2013 | Leave a comment

The risks of UK surrendering to China the control of its nuclear program

questionSurely we, too, should be asking more questions of a chancellor who appears to think that Chinese money buys him out of the intractable difficulties and uncertain costs of nuclear power? 

 What guarantee have we that in depending on Chinese finance, we haven’t surrendered more than we bargained for?

What does China want with Britain’s nuclear industry? flag-UKHilton The Guardian, Thursday 17 October 2013 The Chinese state is not philanthropic. Questions about safety, sovereignty and cost should be asked before we take its money For a chancellor so keen on the defence flag-Chinaof UK national sovereignty against democratic Europeans, George Osborne’s unbridled enthusiasm for Chinese investment in the UK’s critical infrastructure is striking. If all these memorandums of understanding come to fruition, Chinese entities will hold important stakes in water in the UK, airports, IT infrastructure and now nuclear power generation, all without a serious national debate on any potential risks such involvement might bring……. Continue reading

October 18, 2013 Posted by | China, politics international | Leave a comment

More jobs and toys for the nuclear boys – blowing up asteroids

jobs for the boys

David Wright, co-director of the Union of Concerned Scientists’ Global Security Program, said he hoped any joint asteroid defense work would not become a “jobs program” for weapons scientists

Blowing Up Asteroids: The Latest Excuse to Keep Nuclear Stockpiles? While the White House says it seeks a world without nuclear weapons, NASA and US weapons labs are moving ahead with plans to blow up asteroids with A-bombs. Mother Jones, By Douglas Birch, Center for Public Integrity Thu Oct. 17, 2013 When geophysicist H. Jay Melosh attended a meeting of American and ex-Soviet nuclear weapons designers in May 1995, he was surprised by how eager the Cold Warriors were to work together against an unlikely but dangerous extraterrestrial threat: asteroids on a collision course with Earth.

After Edward Teller, father of the hydrogen bomb, urged others meeting at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory to consider building and orbiting huge, new nuclear weapons for planetary protection, some top Russian weaponeers lent their support.

“It was a really bizarre thing to see that these weapons designers were willing to work together—to build the biggest bombs ever,” said Melosh, an expert in space impacts who has an asteroid named after him.

Ever since, he has been pushing back against scientists who still support the nuclear option, arguing that a non-nuclear solution—diverting asteroids by hitting them with battering rams—is both possible and far less dangerous. Continue reading

October 18, 2013 Posted by | USA, weapons and war | Leave a comment