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New method for contaminated water may be failing

20141226_37_v_s2Dec. 26, 2014

Tokyo Electric Power Company has indicated that a new method aimed at tackling a large volume of highly radioactive wastewater at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant has not been entirely successful.

TEPCO gave a progress report on its work to a panel of experts at the Nuclear Regulation Authority on Friday.

The utility last month began pouring cement into underground tunnels filled with the contaminated water from the reactor buildings to stop the water inflow. The water is believed to be leaking into the sea.

TEPCO officials told the panel that workers have completely filled the U-shaped tunnels except for 4 vertical pits that connect the tunnels to the ground surface. They removed 2,500 tons of radioactive water.

But the officials said that when they pumped water up from one of the pits, the water level at another pit changed. That suggests that gaps exist in the concrete-filled tunnels.

The officials argued that they can stop the water from flowing into the tunnels once the 4 vertical pits are filled. But panel members and authority commissioners said more thorough inspections are needed.

TEPCO plans to monitor water levels for a month, look for gaps, and study more effective ways to block the water.

The utility initially planned to freeze wastewater at the end of the tunnel to stop inflow from the reactor buildings and remove the water. But the plan did not work.
Source: http://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/english/news/20141226_37.html

December 26, 2014 Posted by | Japan | | 1 Comment

Pope Francis comes out for renewable energy: fossil fuel industries should be nervous

How Pope Francis could tip the balance against fossil fuels http://reneweconomy.com.au/2014/how-pope-francis-could-tip-the-balance-against-fossil-fuels-63601 By  on 23 December 2014 Six years ago, Pope Benedict XVI installed more than 1,000 solar panels on the Vatican’s audience hall, helping him earn him the sobriquet of the “Green Pope.

vatican-solarSome time in the next few months, his successor Pope Francis may just go one step further. His actions could tip the balance against fossil fuels, as the world’s wealthiest institution takes on the world’s most powerful industry.

The signs have been building. In November, the Pope sent a letter to Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott urging him to address climate change and sustainability at the G20  summit – something Abbott had pointedly refused to do.

At Lima, the Pope sent another letter urging diplomats to agree on a strong deal to tackle climate change as UN negotiations drew to a close. In a message to Peru’s environment minister, Manuel Pulgar Vidal, who led the discussions in Lima, Francis warned that “the time to find global solutions is running out.”

A group of Catholic Bishops went one step further, calling for an end to fossil fuel use, citing climate change’s threat to the global poor as the lodestar of their concern. The document, signed by bishops from all continents, insisted on limiting global temperature rise to 1.5°C relative to pre-industrial levels — a considerably more ambitious goal than the 2°C ceiling that’s generally agreed on as the threshold beyond which climate change becomes truly dangerous.

They also called for the building of “new models of development and lifestyles that are both climate compatible” and can “bring people out of poverty.” Specifically, they said: “Central to this is to put an end to the fossil fuel era, phasing out fossil fuel emissions and phasing in 100 per cent renewables with sustainable energy access for all.”

There is growing speculation within church circles that this view is held at the highest level. Pope Francis wants the image of the Catholic Church to evolve beyond that of a huge multi-national corporation, to its origins as a social and humanitarian based organisation.

As he showed in his extraordinary speech this week to the priests, Pope Francis is very much his own man, not of the establishment.

Francis told the bishops and cardinals who run the Curia – the central administration of the Roman Catholic Church – that their careerism, scheming and greed had infected them with “spiritual Alzheimer’s”.

It was Benedict, though, who put the wheels in motion. The solar panels on the audience hall were enough to power the lighting, heating and cooling of a portion of the entire Vatican state. According to this National Geographic article, he authorised the Vatican’s bank to purchase carbon credits by funding a Hungarian forest, thus making the Catholic city the only fully carbon neutral nation-state.

Several years later, he unveiled a new hybrid Popemobile that would be partially electric. Francis went a step further, commissioning Osram to install 7,000 LED lights in the Sistine Chapel, cutting energy consumption by 90 per cent. It is now being extended to other Vatican museums.

But how much further could Pope Francis go? There is speculation that in his Encyclical, due in April, or even in a New Year’s speech, he could call for dramatic reform by the Catholic church. It would be similar, but bolder and more practical, than the Ecological Conversion address of Pope John Paul II in 2001.

This could include divestment. No one knows how much the Catholic Church has in its funds. It is likely to be hundreds of billions. The Uniting Church in Australia has voted to divest from fossil fuels. In July, the World Council of Churches, an umbrella group representing over half a billion Christians, announced its plans to fully divest from fossil fuels.

The SMH reports that in the same month, the Anglican Church of Australia passed a motion encouraging its diocese to divest. It noted then than a global campaign for the Vatican to divest had just been launched. Ironically, the Vatican’s finances are now controlled by Cardinal George Pell, the former archbishop of Sydney who is a noted climate science denier.

There is speculation that the Pope could emulate the bishops’ call for 100 per cent renewables. What he could do is repeat and enhance the efforts to install solar and lighting at the Vatican across the church’s global assets. In effect, he could follow in the footsteps of other corporate giants – such as Google, Apple and Ikea – and set a goal of 100 per cent renewables for his own church, or corporate entity.

The Catholic Church is not just the largest private employer in Australia (and other countries), with some 180,000 employees, it is also one of the biggest energy consumers – with a combined annual bill that runs into the billions of dollars from schools, aged care centres, churches, parish centres and hospitals.

A series of initiatives that encouraged energy efficiency, the installation of solar systems – schools would be perfect for this because usage matches solar output – and also battery storage would have a profound impact on the incumbent energy system, hastening the inevitable transition to decentralised energy grid.

Not only will this encourage and facilitate a much higher overall adoption of renewables, it will also likely result in cheaper energy for all consumers. Major network providers in Australia see this as inevitable, and are already installing – without subsidies – battery storage instead of upgrading grids,and talking of renewables-based micro-grids instead of relying on the old centralised model.

In the US, the combined energy consumption of Catholic organisations – schools, hospitals, aged care, churches, seminaries and the like, would run into the tens of billions. In Europe, the same again.

But if the Pope’s criticism of the Curia was greeted by stunned silence in the Vatican, it is unlikely that any move towards divestment or a massive uptake of renewables would be greeted in the same way.

The fossil fuel industry is certainly worried. Rio Tinto CEO Sam Walsh, who has repeatedly told everyone that the future is coal, took part in a “day of reflection” at the Vatican in September last year. It was ostensibly billed as a chance for mining companies to get “Christian ethical input” to their conversations about the future of their industry. Others saw it as a lobbying exercise.

More recently, the AFR reports, Walsh and other CEOs of major fossil fuel companies took part in an “Ecumenical Day of Reflection on Mining” at Lambeth Palace, the seat of the Church of England, another massive institution – both in terms of funds, and energy consumption.

December 26, 2014 Posted by | 2 WORLD, ENERGY, Religion and ethics, renewable | Leave a comment

Radiation too high for workers: Fukushima nuclear reactors 1,2 & 3 require robots for clean-up

Japan Atomic Power set to deploy 100 specialists to help with Fukushima dismantling  THE ASAHI SHIMBUN by Daiki Koga and Tsuyoshi Nagano, 25 Dec 14  Japan Atomic Power Co. is working on plans to send a team of more than 100 specialists, backed up by robotic technology, to the beleaguered Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant to accelerate decommissioning work there……….

The plant operator finished removing nuclear fuel at the No. 4 reactor on Dec. 20 and is expected to start full-scale dismantling of the more problematic Nos. 1 to 3 reactors soon.

However, due to difficulties in preventing the spread of radioactive substances and removing debris around the reactor, the removal of fuel at the No. 1 reactor is estimated to start two to five years later than originally planned.

Some of the procedures are likely too difficult for TEPCO to undertake on its own, as the utility does not have sufficient experience in decommissioning nuclear reactors.

Workers in protective suits undertook the removal of fuel from the No. 4 reactor in rotation, as radiation levels were relatively low there. However, as radiation levels are much higher at the No. 3 reactor, the removal of fuel from its storage pool has to be conducted using remote-controlled robots……..http://ajw.asahi.com/article/0311disaster/fukushima/AJ201412250035

December 26, 2014 Posted by | Fukushima 2014 | Leave a comment

Pathetic selling effort by the nuclear industry carpet-baggers

The so-called luminaries attempting to sell (or should that be “shill”) Mad Maxatomstrom are lightweights like Robert Stone who, having made a bad propaganda documentary about nuclear energy sees himself as some kind of expert. Also on the list is Patrick Moore, the notorious paid proponent not only of nuclear but the chemical industry, (as in bring back DDT), the genetic engineering industry, and clear-cut logging. (How does any self-respecting reporter still dare to refer to him as an “environmentalist”?) And then there’s the blinkered Barry Brook who wrongly claimed that North Korea never signed the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and buys the completely discredited IAEA-WHO death figure of 60 for the Chernobyl disaster.

The obvious conclusion is that Mad Maxatomstrom is another desperate, last-ditch attempt by the nuclear coven to cling on to a corner of the energy sector, at least in the mind’s eye if not in the actual marketplace

carpetbagger

The Nuclear Carpet-Baggers http://www.counterpunch.org/2014/12/23/mad-maxatomstrom-just-here-for-the-money/  Mad Maxatomstrom: Just Here for the Money by LINDA PENTZ GUNTER

Except there won’t be much. Money that is. Because the Mad Maxatomstrom plan is to carpet-bag into Germany and try to sell them on nuclear energy and only nuclear energy. Yes, you read that right, Mad Maxatomstrom is Germany’s “first provider of 100 percent nuclear power.” (Okay, the company is actually called Maxatomstrom, but the business plan is so mad, who could resist?)

I say “carpet-bag” because notably all the “spokespeople” are anglo-saxon, most of them pulled from the Evangelical School of Nuclear Deniers. They are also all male and all white. Make of that what you choose.

It’s fitting that this new all-nuclear energy company was apparently launched by a member of Germany’s so-called Pirate Party (it has no members of Parliament.) When I first read the press release I thought it was a spoof. It’s also telling that the company could not find a single, prominent German spokesperson.

And I say “not much money” because there are so many other better and equally competitive, if not cheaper, electricity choices already in Germany, some of which are providers of 100% renewable energy. Germany-based anaylst Craig Norris ran the Maxatomstrom numbersand got “three different offers, each around 50 euros a month – an absolutely unremarkable outcome (it’s basically what I pay right now for 100 percent green power.)” So these pirates won’t really be doing so well in the plundering-the-German-people department.

Mad Maxatomstrom claims it already boasts 3,000 customers! Wow, that’s just a tenth of the amount of people still employed in Germany’s declining nuclear sector, and about 100th of the people employed in the growing renewable energy sector. The local Mom and Pop corner store probably does better. Continue reading

December 26, 2014 Posted by | Germany, marketing | Leave a comment

16 British nuclear power plants are prone to drone hacks

drone-near-nuclear-plantNuclear reactors highly vulnerable to drone attacks A newly published report warns that some 16 British nuclear power plants are prone to drone hacks.
A study conducted by leading British nuclear expert reveals that 16 operational nuclear reactors are not designed to cope with threats posed by “near-cyborg technology.”
In his report which also included possible threats against French nuclear facilities, John Large warned that unmanned aircraft can navigate barriers that are dated and belong to a “different age.”………http://www.presstv.ir/detail/2014/12/24/391683/uk-nuclear-plants-prone-to-drone-strike/

December 26, 2014 Posted by | general | Leave a comment

USA nuclear lobby getting desperate: demanding “strong government intervention”

NUCLEAR-INDUSTRY-FIGHTS-ONWith US Nuclear in Decline, Scientists and Analysts Urge Support for Next-Generation Technologies, The Energy Collective, Stephen Lacey December 24, 2014 “……..The global nuclear industry is in steady decline. Since hitting a peak in 1996 at nearly 18 percent of global energy production, the industry’s share has dropped down to less than 11 percent.

Even with countries like China and India looking to boost their low-carbon energy supplies with nuclear, project developers around the world have faced long delays, cost overruns, and strong competition from natural gas and distributed resources, as well as policies designed to phase nuclear out entirely.

America is facing its own imminent decline in nuclear generation……….

A comprehensive federal plan, says IEA, is the only way to keep the industry relevant. ………..”The domestic nuclear industry is therefore at a critical juncture as a consequence of its declining economic competitiveness, and existing market mechanisms do not favor investment in high capital-intensive nuclear technology,” concluded the IEA.

Articulating that strategy will not be easy.

On a levelized-cost-of energy basis (an admittedly limited metric), distributed renewables are competing with nuclear plants, adding to the pain inflicted by low natural gas prices. Both free-market advocates and renewable energy proponents say new nuclear shouldn’t be built if it can’t compete in today’s market.

Cost overruns are also hurting the industry’s image. The first U.S. nuclear project to be built in 30 years, the Vogtle power plant in Georgia, is now $1.5 billion over budget and getting more expensive. Angry about rate increases caused by Vogtle, the Green Tea Party and environmental groups were able to force Georgia Power to support half a gigawatt of new solar in the state — much of it procured for 6.5 cents per kilowatt-hour.

Meanwhile, many environmentalists remain staunchly opposed to nuclear for traditional health and safety reasons……….

For nuclear to have any chance of succeeding, strong government intervention will be needed to fund more R&D and back loans for commercial-scale plants, say proponents…..

December 26, 2014 Posted by | business and costs, USA | Leave a comment

Unfair and not sensible – USA hawks Try to Sabotage Nuclear Deal

highly-recommendedUS Iran Hawks Try to Sabotage Nuclear Deal   Iran hawks in Washington don’t want a nuclear agreement; they want Tehran to surrender its sovereignty and national rights. The National Interest Muhammad Sahimi December 24, 2014 As the prospects of a comprehensive nuclear agreement between Iran and the P5+1—the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council plus Germany—brightens, Washington’s hawks seem to have gone into panic mode. They do not seem to want any agreement unless Iran says “uncle,” gives up its sovereignty and national rights within the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), and completely dismantles its nuclear infrastructure. They’re asking Iran to capitulate, not to negotiate. That’s an unrealistic goal—and in their dogged pursuit of it, they have overlooked serious steps Tehran’s taken that demonstrate a desire for compromise.

We see this unfortunate dynamic in an article this month by Mark Dubowitz, Executive Director of the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, published in the National Interest. Dubowitz’s main premise is that it was the economic sanctions imposed by the United States and its allies that brought Iran to the negotiation table, and only more economic sanctions will induce it to surrender. The premise is false. While the sanctions did play a role, they were not the most important reason, or even one of the primary ones. Iran is negotiating because that is what it has wanted—contrary to Dubowitz’s assertion that “Iran does not appear to be ready to compromise.”

President Hassan Rouhani, Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, and their diplomatic team have always been interested in a compromise. …………….

What has the United States given in return for these major concessions by Iran? Very little. It has released a small amount of Iran’s own money, frozen in foreign banks as the result of the illegal sanctions. The U.S. has also lifted its (also illegal!) ban on the export of petrochemical products and a few other minor items. As President Obama stated, 95 percent of all the sanctions are still in place………….

The reality is that the Geneva Accord and its Joint Plan of Action permit Iran to continue its research on more advanced centrifuges. Iran’s obligation, which it has lived by, is not installing such centrifuges. After this was pointed out, Albright retreated, declaring that the test was in violation of the “spirit” of the Accord. Who is moving whose goalposts, again?

Washington’s hawks risk missing another chance at a sensible nuclear agreement or détente with Iran, one that would dramatically change the dynamics of the turbulent Middle East for the better. Instead, they seem to think they can drive a proud nation to surrender. They’ve been wrong before—and their latest salvo suggests they don’t realize they may be wrong again.

Muhammad Sahimi, Professor of Chemical Engineering & Materials Science and the NIOC Chair in Petroleum Engineering at the University of Southern California, is the editor and publisher of the website, Iran News and Middle East Reports, and has been analyzing Iran’s political developments and its nuclear program for two decades.

December 26, 2014 Posted by | Iran, politics international, USA | Leave a comment

Criticism in Iran of Iran’s nuclear power programme

flag-IranNuclear Program Has ‘Hurt Iran More Than Iraq War’, Payvand Iran News, 18 Dec 14 
By Golnaz Esfandiari, RFE/RL Iran’s nuclear activities and ambitions faced rare, blunt criticism at a roundtable at Tehran University, where one of the speakers said the damage done by the nuclear program was greater than that by the 1980-88 war with Iraq, which left tens of thousands dead and caused much devastation.

“The imposed war [with Iraq] did not damage us as much as the nuclear program has,” professor Sadegh Zibakalam said at the December 17 roundtable, according to reports by Iranian semiofficial news agencies.

Zibakalam also criticized the lack of public debate about the nuclear issue.

Other speakers were also critical of the nuclear program and its costs for Iranians, who have come under unprecedented U.S.-led sanctions that have made life more difficult.

Speaking at the event, former reformist lawmaker Ahmad Shirzad said nothing had come out of the nuclear program, “not even a glass of water.”…….

Shirzad said that he welcomed Iran’s official line, according to which the country is against building and acquiring nuclear weapons.

The former lawmaker also seemed to suggest that Iran would be better off without a civil nuclear program. “Iran doesn’t have the primary resources and know-how for a nuclear program,” he was quoted as saying by ISNA. He said Iran could assert itself in areas such as petrochemistry and natural gas, where the country has the resources and the knowledge………….

Criticism of the nuclear issue has been a red line in Iran, where media face tough censorship rules in their news coverage.

Shirzad said the nuclear issue has turned into a matter of “honor.” “When something becomes a matter of honor, discussing it is not possible anymore. And that has been our problem for the past 11 years,” he said.

Zibakalam said that under Iran’s previous administration, criticism of the nuclear issue was impossible. “Unfortunately from 2003 to 2013, debate about the different aspects of the nuclear issue was not possible. I believe that whenever people and the press are prevented from expressing their opinions on different issues, the result is not good,” he was quoted as saying.

He added that during those years whenever he would send a slightly critical piece to the press, “the editors would dump it in the closest trash can.”………http://www.payvand.com/news/14/dec/1098.html

December 26, 2014 Posted by | Iran, opposition to nuclear | Leave a comment

Russia keen to lock Jordan into long term contracts to buy nuclear reactors

Russian-BearRussia approves draft deal to build nuclear plant in Jordan, Times of Israel 25 Dec 14 State-owned company Rosatom expected to finish construction of first 1,000-megawatt unit by 2024, second by 2026 Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev endorsed a draft Russia-Jordan agreement on the construction and operation of a nuclear plant in Jordan, the official website of the Kremlin said on Thursday…….

The state-owned company will form a joint venture with the Jordanian government, in which the Russian company will have 49.9 percent of the shares and Jordan will own 50.1%. The agreement will be financed by investments from both parties……

The statement published on the Russian government’s website said the implementation of the Jordan-Rosatom agreement will positively affect the development of Russia’s nuclear energy sector and will ensure long-term contracts to Russian companies. Russia approves draft deal to build nuclear plant in Jordan | The Times of Israel http://www.timesofisrael.com/russia-approves-draft-deal-to-build-nuclear-plant-in-jordan/#ixzz3N20QThlz 

December 26, 2014 Posted by | Jordan, marketing, Russia | Leave a comment

Diablo nuclear power plant’s License renewal is not a foregone conclusion

text-risk-assessmentIn PG&E’s probabilistic casino—where the chance of an earthquake occurring counts for more than the actual damage it could do when it occurs—the deck is stacked, the cards are marked, and the house always wins. If the roof timbers of your house—built under a towering old tree—were shown to be not up to code standards were that tree to come crashing down, would you insist that the contractor reinforce the roof, or accept his assurances that the odds of the tree falling were too low to worry about? Are you feeling lucky?

Don’t count on Diablo, New Times,  December 10th, 2014 License renewal is not a foregone conclusion BY ROCHELLE BECKER“……..– Sen. Barbara Boxer and San Luis Obispo’s former state Sen. Dr. Sam Blakeslee (also a former Exxon geophysicist who headed the Republican caucus when Diablo nuclear power planthe served in the Assembly) pulled back the curtain on the myth of seismic safety at the Diablo Canyon nuclear plant, a charade that PG&E and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission have been casting like a spell over the Oz-like serenity of the Central Coast.

With his cogent testimony before Sen. Boxer and 26 pages of supporting documentation, Dr. Blakeslee exposed the mathematical shell game that PG&E is playing with the results of their “Final Seismic Report.” That report, released in September, was in fulfillment of Blakeslee’s AB 1632 of 2006.

Blakeslee notes PG&E’s historic neglect for the presence of earthquake faults near Diablo, which led to cost overruns and delays in the original construction of the plant. More significantly, when the major threat of the Hosgri fault was finally acknowledged, more than 80 percent of the plant had been built. Rather than re-evaluate the true danger and possibly cancel the plant, PG&E, with the NRC’s acquiescence, began a policy of reverse engineering their earthquake ground motion prediction formulas to make them fit within the mathematical boundaries of what had already been built. Continue reading

December 26, 2014 Posted by | safety, USA | Leave a comment

Highly elevated radiation levels across North America might come from Fukushima

radiation-warningFlag-USAFukushima Radiation Up 50,000% With Elevated Radiation Reported Across North America http://chemtrailsplanet.net/2014/12/15/fukushima-radiation-up-50000-with-elevated-radiation-reported-across-north-america/, December 15, 2014 by: Ethan A. Huff, staff writer

(NaturalNews) Beta radiation levels are off the charts at monitoring sites all across North America, according to new reports. But experts are blaming these radiation spikes on practically everything except for Fukushima.

Data gathered from tracking units in California, Arizona, Illinois and elsewhere reveal radiation levels up to 50,000 percent higher than what was observed at the same time last year, and in some cases compared to levels seen this past summer.

EnviroReporter.com says the impacted Global Fukushima Radiation warningsites are scattered throughout the country and aren’t just confined to the West Coast. Readings taken near Los Angeles; Chicago; Montgomery, Alabama; and Madison, Wisconsin, reveal total beta counts per minute (CPM) greatly exceeding the 1,000 CPM threshold considered by the government to be problematic.

In Tucson, Arizona, for instance, a 460 CPM reading was recently taken, which is more than 10 times higher than the reading taken last year on November 27. Similarly, Phoenix, Arizona’s 735 CPM reading measured more than 21 times higher than last year’s reading.

San Diego appears to be one of the hardest-hit areas, with a CPM reading of 650, as of October 1. This figure is 60 times higher than it was last year on the same date, despite the fact that San Diego’s normal background radiation rate typically hovers around 20 CPM.

“U.S. Environmental Protection Agency RadNet radiation monitors have detected renewed surges in atmospheric readings of dangerous beta radiation across the country,” explains EnviroReporter.com about the seemingly inexplicable phenomenon.

“Over a dozen metropolitan test sites have registered four-month highs in EnviroReporter.com’s most recent comprehensive assessment.

Radiation testing site near Chicago records radiation levels thousands of times higher than maximum safety threshold

December 26, 2014 Posted by | environment, USA | 1 Comment

Fukushima radiation may be the cause of newly detected thyroid cancers in Fukushima children

Fukushima Nuclear Disaster May Cause Childhood Thyroid Cancer: Reports Sputnuk News, 24 Dec 14 Radiation from the Fukushima nuclear incident may be the reason for four cases of thyroid cancer detected in children in the local area. MOSCOW, December 24 (Sputnik) – The 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster may be behind another four children being affected by thyroid cancer, Xinhua reported Wednesday, citing local media reports.

In August, Japanese researchers, using data from the first survey conducted into the potential health impacts caused by the Fukushima nuclear disaster, concluded that 57 children had thyroid cancer as a direct result of radiation leaked by the reactors.

However, a further four children, then aged from between six and 17, but not counted by the first survey, have been included in a second survey as also suffering from the disease, according to Xinhua………http://linkis.com/sputniknews.com/scie/NJDbQ

December 26, 2014 Posted by | general | 1 Comment

Fukushima mothers feel intimidated against speaking about radiation anxieties

INTERVIEW/ Yukihiko Kayama: Experts should help Fukushima mothers speak up about radiation fears, Asahi Shimbun  December 26, 2014 By YURI OIWA/ Staff Writer  FUKUSHIMA--Psychiatrist Yukihiko Kayama said it is becoming more embarrassing, with the passage of time since the Fukushima nuclear disaster of 2011, for mothers in Fukushima Prefecture to casually discuss their fears of radiation.

In a recent interview with The Asahi Shimbun, Kayama attributed the trend to a “division” within the population of Fukushima Prefecture, whereby a divergence in their lifestyles according to their residential areas, available economic resources and other factors has made it difficult for them to relate to each other’s feelings.

He proposed meetings of experts with small audiences of residents, where participants could feel at ease talking about their own experiences, concerns and other problems. That would ease the speakers’ emotions to a certain extent, Kayama said.

Excerpts of the interview follow:……………

“….For one thing, people consciously keep from talking about radiation because many of them have found their own ways of coming to terms with radiation in their lives. But rather, I think it is truer to say that, with the passage of time since the nuclear disaster, it is becoming more embarrassing to talk about radiation at all.

That is partly because you are afraid you could be taken for being eccentric if you don’t react to radiation concerns the way others do. Some are concerned they could be taken for nervous ones who still worry about radiation if they just mentioned the topic of radiation.

You also tend to keep your mouth shut when you don’t know the background of the people you are talking to………..”  http://ajw.asahi.com/article/views/opinion/AJ201412260004

December 26, 2014 Posted by | Japan, psychology - mental health | Leave a comment

South Korea wants China’s help to investigate hacking attempts on nuclear power company

flag-S-KoreaKorea calls on China for help following hack attempt on nuclear power company IP address used in the hack traced to city on China-North Korea border. Ars Technica by  – Dec 24 2014

Last week, Korea Hydro and Nuclear Power, which runs South Korea’s 23 nuclear plants, suffered a security breach in which personnel records, public health monitoring data, and reactor designs were obtained from the company’s systems and posted online. The attacker, which linked to the materials on an anti-nuclear activist site, also threatened to release further information unless three of the company’s plants were shut down by tomorrow.

Now, Korean investigators have identified a Chinese IP address as the source of the attacks and are asking the Chinese government for assistance in the investigation.

According to a report in The Korea Times, the attacks were routed through three different VPN service providers in the US, Japan, and Korea. By obtaining these records, the initial IP address that launched the attack were traced to the city of Shenyang, which is on the China-North Korea border.An article from Australia’s ABC indicates that this city hosts one end of North Korea’s main Internet connection to the outside world, which was severed earlier this week.

A number of sources confirm that South Korea has asked for China’s assistance in the matter and quote an unnamed official as saying the country isn’t pointing the finger at its neighbor: “There is a possibility that the IP addresses in China are not the final source but used in a routing.” But suspicion isn’t directed at China itself; rather, it’s suspected that North Korean agents were using the Chinese city for their activities……..http://arstechnica.com/security/2014/12/korea-calls-on-china-for-help-following-theft-from-nuclear-power-company/

December 26, 2014 Posted by | incidents, South Korea | Leave a comment

77% Of New US Electricity Generating Capacity was in wind and solar, In November

solar,-wind-aghastWind & Solar = 77% Of New US Electricity Generating Capacity In November Clean Technica December 23rd, 2014 by   “……. I have included an estimate of non-utility-scale solar (i.e., residential and commercial solar) in the numbers below……The United States Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s (FERC) Office of Energy Projects released its monthly “Energy Infrastructure Update” on Tuesday, and the big winners from the month of November seem to be wind and solar, which combined added up to over 70% of all new electrical generating capacity placed into service during the month. If you add in our estimate for non-utility-scale solar, the market share of solar and wind rises to 77%.

And as Ken Bossong, Executive Director of the SUN DAY Campaign, says, this is a good thing:

“With only one month left in 2014, it has become a horse race between natural gas and renewable energy as to which will dominate new electrical generation for the year. Regardless of the winner, it is apparent that coal, oil, and nuclear will be left behind in the dust.”………  https://cleantechnica.com/2014/12/23/wind-solar-account-70-new-us-generating-capacity-november/

December 26, 2014 Posted by | renewable, USA | Leave a comment