nuclear-news

The News That Matters about the Nuclear Industry

Treasonous Nuclear Security Hoax: US to Bury Foreign Plutonium at WIPP Site in New Mexico (Formally Approved ); Import of More Foreign Waste May Be Negotiated Today-Tomorrow Under Pretense of Nuclear Security; Obama Terrorizing America with Foreign Nuclear Waste

Mining Awareness +

Obama’s “Nuclear Security Summits” have been a deadly hoax for America. It is wonderful for those many countries who literally get shot of their nuclear waste by sending it to be buried in America. And for those, such as Russia, who have benefitted from US taxpayer largesse in the upgrade of over 200 Russian nuclear sites. As of this week, it is official that foreign plutonium is to be buried in New Mexico at the WIPP site, which is still closed after a radiological accident due to exploding plutonium waste. http://www.wipp.energy.gov/Special/WIPP%20Update%203_17_16.pdf The import of more foreign waste may be negotiated today and tomorrow under pretense of nuclear security. The real security risk is the transport of dangerous radioactive waste from facilities in safe countries (e.g. vaults in a Swiss Nuclear Research Center) to be dumped and buried on America’s shores. In short, treasonous Obama is terrorizing America with foreign nuclear…

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March 31, 2016 Posted by | Uncategorized | 1 Comment

NGO Joint Statement Against Secretive Plutonium Shipment in Tokai-mura

Mining Awareness +

Greenpeace Japan Nuclear Ship
Monju Sodium leak fire wikileaks
Monju Sodium leak fire via Wikileaks https://wikileaks.org/wiki/The_Monju_nuclear_reactor_leak

Press Release from Greenpeace.org:
2016/03/18 NGO Joint Statement Against Secret Plutonium Shipment in Tokai-mura
プレスリリース – 2016-03-18
Tokyo, March 18 2016 – A shipment of weapons-grade plutonium scheduled to depart the port of Tokai, Ibaraki prefecture this coming weekend highlights the failure, but also the proliferation risks, of the current Japanese nuclear policy, a coalition of five non-governmental organizations warned today. A cargo of 331kg of plutonium will be loaded on to the Pacific Egret, an armed British nuclear transport ship, prior to departure under armed escort to the United States. It will be the largest shipment of separated plutonium since 1.8 tons of plutonium was delivered to Japan by controversial Akatsuki-maru in 1992. The two month voyage to the Joint Base Charleston-Weapons Station will then see the plutonium dumped at the Department of Energy Savannah River Site (SRS) in South Carolina.(1)…

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March 31, 2016 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Indian Point Nuclear Power Station: Missing Bolts and Bars in Pressure Vessel Internals (Baffle-Former Bolts); Could Cause Fuel Failure; Block Cooling

Mining Awareness +

According to the US NRC, during planned inspection of Indian Point Nuclear Power Station “Entergy identified baffle/former bolts with either visual anomalies or ultrasonic indications. All vessel internal examinations have been successfully completed with no anomalies other than the baffle/former bolts.http://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/doc-collections/event-status/event/2016/20160330en.html

Entergy offered more details in a Press Release: “Engineers identified missing bolts, and bars meant to hold them in place, and other degradation requiring replacement of the bolts. Each bolt, about two inches long and made of stainless steel, holds plate inserts together inside the reactor.http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/hundreds-of-inspections-completed-on-indian-point-unit-2-replacement-of-reactor-liner-bolts-planned-300242845.html
Core baffle diagram US NRC
There are many bolts because there are many plates. Although there were “only” 11% damaged, the damage maybe concentrated because loss of one bolt could increase stresses in the surrounding areas. Thus, one suspects that there may have been plate failure or almost failure. [1] Apparently, even without total failure it can cause serious damage to the…

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March 31, 2016 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

March 31 Energy News

geoharvey

Opinion:

This chart shows the United States’ mind-blowing clean energy potential • The United States uses about 3.7 million GWh of electricity each year. The next time someone tries to make the argument that 100 percent renewable energy is out of reach for the U.S., show them this image: [Grist]

From the Environment America Research & Policy Center From the Environment America Research & Policy Center

Wake up call for oil companies: electric vehicles will deflate oil demand • Major oil companies greatly underestimate the impact electric vehicles will have on their market. Trends currently underway in the auto industry are likely to have a substantial impact on oil demand. [CleanTechnica]

Clear Skies From Wind Power • Over 17 million Americans have asthma. Every year it is responsible for more than 10 million doctor visits and 1.8 million trips to the emergency room. Health professionals tell us one of the biggest…

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March 31, 2016 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

March 30 Energy News

geoharvey

Science and Technology:

¶ The National Snow and Ice Data Center reported that the spread of Arctic sea ice set a new record low for the second straight year, stopping last week at 5.607 million square miles. That’s 5,000 square miles less than last year’s record low and 431,000 square miles less than the average. [CNN]

The consequences of climate change go far beyond warming temperatures. The consequences of climate change go
far beyond warming temperatures.

¶ MIT researchers demonstrated a calcium-metal-based liquid battery intended for grid-scale storage and a long cycle life. Calcium was blended with magnesium to make it usable. Use of earth-abundant materials and a scalable kind of construction are among the battery’s advantages. [CleanTechnica]

World:

¶ There are renewed calls to re-examine Alberta’s deregulated power market after the announced closure of a coal-fired electrical generator. Maxim Power Corp announced the temporary shut down of the 44-year-old plant, saying it is losing money…

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March 31, 2016 Posted by | Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Spanish Nuclear Reactor Cooling System Defects: Hold Your Breath Until Aug. 2017 or Longer – May Be Too Late

Mining Awareness +

There is such a thing as too late. The world stands at the precipice of too late. Spain would have until mid August 2017 to address failings in the cooling system of Almaraz nuclear power station, with the loophole of “reasonably practical” and claims that it is safe, anyway. While this appears prompt compared to the US NRC, which has given US nuclear power stations from 2012 to 2019 to repair serious electrical defects, it may not be prompt enough. Notice that the question, below, was raised by someone in neighboring Portugal. There can be very serious transboundary impacts. Belarus was, and remains, more badly hit than the Ukraine by the Chernobyl nuclear accident. Authoritarian States may be required in these countries to keep a lid on knowledge of health impacts and the concomitant dissent:
Belarus, Ukraine and Russia were the most highly contaminated countries. About 5 million people…

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March 31, 2016 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Ice wall at Fukushima plant switched on, but will it work?

by MARI YAMAGUCHI Mar. 31, 2016

TOKYO (AP) — The operator of Japan’s destroyed Fukushima nuclear plant switched on a giant refrigeration system on Thursday to create an unprecedented underground ice wall around its damaged reactors. Radioactive water has been flowing from the reactors, and other methods have failed to fully control it. The decontamination and decommissioning of the plant, damaged by a massive earthquake and tsunami in 2011, hinge of the success of the wall.

Q. WHAT IS AN ICE WALL?

A. Engineers installed 1,550 underground refrigeration pipes designed to create a 1.5-kilometer (0.9-mile) barrier of frozen soil around four damaged reactor buildings and their turbines to control groundwater flowing into the area and prevent radioactive water from seeping out. The pipes are 30 meters (100 feet) deep, the equivalent of a 10-story building. Engineers say coolant in the pipes will freeze the surrounding soil to minus 30 degrees Celsius (minus 22 Fahrenheit), creating the wall over several months.

Q. WHY IS AN ICE WALL NEEDED?

A. The cores of three of the damaged reactors melted during the accident and must be cooled constantly with water to keep them from overheating again. The cooling water becomes radioactive and leaks out through damaged areas into the building basements, where it mixes with groundwater, increasing the volume of contaminated water. Nearly 800,000 tons of radioactive water have been pumped out, treated and stored in 1,000 tanks that now occupy virtually every corner of the Fukushima plant, interfering with its decontamination and decommissioning and adding to the risk of further leaks of water into the nearby ocean.

Q. ARE THERE RISKS?

A. Construction officials say the coolant is environmentally safe. There were doubts that the huge refrigeration system could effectively freeze the soil while groundwater continues to flow in the area. The operator, Tokyo Electric Power Co., says results from a test of part of the wall last summer were mixed but suggest the system has sufficient capability. Experts are also concerned that an ice wall cannot be adjusted quickly in an emergency situation, such as a sudden increase in the flow of contaminated water, because it takes several weeks to freeze or melt. Electrical costs for running the refrigeration system could be steep. TEPCO says the wall, once formed, can remain frozen for up to two months in the event of a power failure.

Q. WHO MADE THE ICE WALL?

A. The 35 billion yen ($312 million) project was funded by the government and built by Kajima Corp., which has used similar technology in smaller projects such as subway construction. The wall was delayed by technical uncertainties and was finished last month, a year behind schedule.

March 31, 2016 Posted by | Fukushima 2016 | , | 2 Comments

Tepco starts freezing soil around Fukushima plant reactors

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Tokyo Electric Power Co. said Thursday it has started freezing soil around damaged nuclear reactor buildings at the disaster-hit Fukushima plant, aiming to reduce the flow of groundwater into the highly contaminated facilities.

The Nuclear Regulation Authority on Wednesday gave Tepco permission to create a coolant-filled ice wall and start freezing soil on the east sea-facing side of the plant followed by 95 percent of the west side facing the mountains.

The work is expected to take more than three months to complete.

The plant was crippled by a massive earthquake and tsunami in March 2011.

In June 2014, Tepco installing equipment needed to establish the ice wall around the No. 1 to No. 4 reactors.

The work was completed in February, with the government funding some ¥35 billion ($309 million) of the project.

The utility plans to seek permission to extend the wall to cover the entire west side as well as the south and north sides of the plant after collecting data.

The 1.5-kilometer-long and 30-meter-deep wall is designed to stem a massive flow of groundwater from entering the basements of the reactor buildings and mixing with leaked toxic water.

The complete freezing is expected to take eight months if all goes smoothly.

Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said the government “hopes the ice wall will stem the flow of groundwater into the facilities at an early date.”

Tepco and the government initially aimed to complete freezing the entire wall by the end of fiscal 2015, but the schedule was delayed due to prolonged discussions on safety measures.

The wall is expected to reduce the amount of groundwater flowing into the facilities every day to about 50 tons from more than 100 tons currently.

Still, the effectiveness of the ice wall, which would be the world’s largest ground freezing project, remains unclear.

The NRA warned earlier that if the groundwater level within the wall is reduced excessively by stemming the flow from outside, highly contaminated water within the buildings could seep out.

Tepco said it will stop the freezing work or inject water into wells around the reactor buildings if the groundwater level inside the wall is likely to become too low.

http://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2016/03/31/national/tepco-starts-freezing-soil-around-fukushima-plant-reactors/#.Vv03EvKCjIW

March 31, 2016 Posted by | Fukushima 2016 | , | Leave a comment

Increased Strontium in Sardines since Fukushima Accident?

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Dogs fed sardines show high Strontium levels
by Dr. Peter Dobias, DVM
Why you might want to cut out small fish from your dog’s diet

I have had two dog patients with severely elevated levels of the element strontium. The interesting part is that these two dogs were fed a high amount of sardines and I highly suspect that strontium is coming from this source.

Strontium acts in the body the same way as calcium and deposits in bones. Sardines and other small fish are eaten whole with the bones and that is why they are more likely a source of this toxic element.

The reason why I am concerned is that the radioactive isotope strontium 90 is a toxic carcinogen and it has been released in Japan’s Fukushima disaster.

Here is an example of the results:

 

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As a veterinarian, I source from almost three decades of experience, but still I like to see the proof. Hair testing for minerals and toxic elements has been really helpful because it is highly accurate and shows what is happening in different groups of dogs.

In the course of many years of testing, I have learned that dogs who eat fish-based foods have elevated mercury levels and sardines appear to be the cause of increased strontium. Since the Fukushima nuclear accident strontium is continuously being released into the oceans and not much is being done to inform the general public.

Sadly, I have noticed that dogs who have epilepsy have higher than average levels of strontium and mercury, which made me recommend against feeding fish and sardines to dogs, despite their nutritional benefits. Fish is not what it used to be.

http://peterdobias.com/blogs/blog/11014105-dogs-fed-sardines-show-high-strontium-levels

http://peterdobias.com/blogs/blog/113943301-how-to-avoid-foods-high-in-arsenic-and-keep-your-dog-healthy?utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=Content

March 31, 2016 Posted by | Fukushima 2016 | , , , , | Leave a comment

Fukushima Daiichi is not Tepco’s first accident

Fukushima is not Tepco’s first big accident. Fukushima was not their first Prom. They had practice only 4 years earlier. And guess what? Even back then Tepco misrepresented the amount that leaked into the ocean.

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Chuetsu Earthquake

The Kashiwazaki-Kariwa Nuclear Power Plant (KKNPP) in Japan’s Niigata Prefecture can generate more power than any other power plant in the world—when it’s running. Since it became fully operational in 1997, one scandal after another has repeatedly forced it to shut down some or all of its seven reactors. Examples include concealing evidence of stress cracks and covering up the fact that the plant was built near fault lines.

That last bit came to light after the Chuetsu earthquake occurred on July 16, 2007. The magnitude 6.8 quake’s epicenter was only 24 kilometers (15 mi) offshore from the plant. The shaking was greater than the plant was designed to withstand; it was built before Japan updated their earthquake standards in 2006.

The ominous dry run for the later Fukushima Daiichi disaster damaged KKNPP and its reactors. The Tokyo Electric Power Company acknowledged that 1,200 liters of slightly radioactive water leaked into the sea and that dozens of barrels of low-level nuclear waste broke open during the quake. An exhaust pipe leaking radioactive iodine was also reported.

A report issued on July 19 by the Nuclear Information and Resource Service (NIRS) claimed the release of radioactive material to be much worse. According to NIRS, the water that leaked into the sea came from the irradiated fuel pool of one of the reactors. Another reactor had been releasing radioactive steam since the earthquake. The Associated Press also reported large amounts of damage to the plant’s infrastructure, with cracks and leaks seemingly everywhere. Liquefaction (formerly solid ground turning to mud) had occurred under parts of KKNPP.

10 Devastating Radiation Accidents They Never Tell You About

 

March 31, 2016 Posted by | Japan | , , | Leave a comment

Osaka governor says Japan should debate need for nuclear weapons

OSAKA – Osaka Gov. Ichiro Matsui, the head of Osaka Ishin no Kai, has voiced support for a national debate on whether or not Japan should possess nuclear weapons.

“With the perfect right to collective self-defense, we should debate whether our troops can completely cover the needs of our own country,” Matsui said during an informal meeting with reporters Tuesday at Osaka’s prefectural office. “If we possess weapons, the ultimate weapon will become necessary.”

The call for a national debate follows comments made by U.S. Republican presidential candidate and front-runner Donald Trump in an interview with The New York Times where he said he would be open to both Japan and South Korea possessing nuclear weapons and the U.S. withdrawing its forces from the two Asian countries.

Touching on Trump’s statement, Matsui said he thought it would be best if Japan did not possess a nuclear arsenal, as it had been bombed by such weapons.

But, in calling for debate on the issue, he added: “What do we do if America’s military strength (in Japan) disappears? Wishful thinking doesn’t get us anywhere.”

Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga, the government’s top spokesman, has said in the past that Japan will maintain the three nonnuclear principles that prohibit it from owning, developing and transporting nuclear weapons.

Matsui’s comments also came the same day the nation’s new security laws — which are expected to bind the U.S. and Japanese militaries even closer together — came into effect. It was also just a few days after the party released its basic plan for constitutional revisions.

Osaka Ishin leaders are close to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Suga, who see Matsui and his party as potential allies on a number of issues, including amending the Constitution.

The Osaka governor’s comments are believed to reflect the sentiments of other right-leaning politicians as well.

http://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2016/03/30/national/politics-diplomacy/osaka-governor-says-japan-debate-need-nuclear-weapons/#.VvvKo8fH87Q

March 30, 2016 Posted by | Japan | | Leave a comment

NRA approves TEPCO’s plan to freeze underground walls of soil at Fukushima plant

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NRA approves TEPCO’s plan to freeze underground walls of soil at Fukushima plant

The Nuclear Regulation Authority (NRA) decided on March 30 to approve Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO)’s plan to gradually freeze underground walls of soil around the crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant, starting with shields on the ocean side.

With the NRA’s approval, TEPCO, the operator of the crippled Fukushima nuclear complex, is to begin work as early as March 31 to freeze the walls built around the buildings of reactors Nos. 1 through 4 at the plant. The walls are designed to prevent underground water from flowing into the reactor buildings. But such a large-scale “wall of ice” has not been introduced anywhere in the world and it is unclear how much underground water the frozen shields will be able to prevent from flowing into the crippled nuclear complex.

Under the project to build the frozen soil walls, coolant chilled to a temperature of minus 30 degrees Celsius is to circulate through 1,568 pipes that are driven into the ground to a depth of around 30 meters, to create a “wall of ice.” The project is aimed at preventing underground water from entering the reactor buildings and reducing the amount of contaminated water being generated. If the project goes as planned, work to freeze the walls is expected to be completed in about eight months. TEPCO estimates that the walls will help the utility reduce the inflow of underground water to several dozen tons per day from the current 150 to 200 tons.

TEPCO is to gradually freeze the walls, starting with the one (about 690 meters) on the ocean side first, while leaving seven sections (a total of about 45 meters) on the mountain side unfrozen. TEPCO had initially planned to freeze all of the walls at once. But if the levels of underground water around the reactor buildings drop drastically, contaminated water remaining in the reactor buildings could flow out. So the NRA called for the gradual freezing of the walls. TEPCO then accepted the NRA’s suggestion.

The frozen-soil wall project is considered to be a key measure to deal with contaminated water along with the so-called “subdrain” project designed to reduce the amount of water being contaminated by removing underground water from wells around the reactor buildings. TEPCO started inserting pipes into the ground in June 2014 and completed its preparations to begin freezing the walls in February this year.

http://mainichi.jp/english/articles/20160330/p2a/00m/0na/012000c

TEPCO given OK on freezing soil at Fukushima plant

The Nuclear Regulation Authority gave the go-ahead to Tokyo Electric Power Co.’s plan to freeze the soil around the reactors at the crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant from the seaside on March 30.

The aim of the frozen soil wall is to block the flow of groundwater into the reactor buildings to prevent it from becoming contaminated with radioactive substances.

The utility has already inserted 1,568 pipes to a depth of 30 meters in the ground around the No. 1 to No. 4 reactor buildings. The plan is to circulate liquid with a temperature of minus 30 degrees through the pipes to freeze the surrounding soil.

TEPCO’s plan is to first freeze the entire wall on the seaside and about half of the wall on the mountain side.

The effects of completing the frozen wall on the seaside are expected to show after about six weeks with water being prevented from flowing through. Then, the frozen portions on the mountain side will be gradually increased. When 95 percent of the wall is frozen, TEPCO will suspend the freeze, leaving cracks in seven places to allow some water through.

The utility predicts that with 95 percent of the entire soil wall frozen, about half of the groundwater will be blocked.

To freeze the entire wall on the mountain side, TEPCO will have to gain further approval from the NRA.

Initially, the electric power company planned to freeze soil only on the mountain side. However, the NRA pointed out that if groundwater is totally blocked from the mountain side, the level of water within the frozen soil near the reactors could become too low and with nothing outside to stop it, highly contaminated water inside the reactor buildings could more rapidly flow out.

Because of that, TEPCO decided in February that it will freeze the soil mainly from the seaside and collect data on the level of groundwater and, after that, it will freeze the entire wall.

“It is important to collect sufficient data in a continuous manner and implement the freezing while keeping watch,” said NRA chairman Shunichi Tanaka.

The plan to create the frozen soil wall was developed by an economy ministry committee in May 2013 as an important part of measures to decrease the volume of contaminated water. The work to insert pipes into the ground was completed in February.

http://ajw.asahi.com/article/behind_news/social_affairs/AJ201603300074

March 30, 2016 Posted by | Fukushima 2016 | , | Leave a comment

Public-private council launched to turn Fukushima into green energy hub

JIJI MAR 28, 2016  FUKUSHIMA – A public-private council tasked with devising measures to turn Fukushima Prefecture into a renewable energy hub has been set up in the city of Fukushima. …. (subscribers onlyhttp://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2016/03/28/national/social-issues/public-private-council-launched-make-fukushima-renewable-energy-hub/#.Vvtazpx97Gh

March 30, 2016 Posted by | Japan, renewable | Leave a comment

Prosecutors innocent TEPCO over radioactive water leakage into the ocean

The court said there is no evidence that proves that radioactive water flew out of the Fukushima nuclear power plant to the ocean. I hope this would finally convince those who haven’t been convinced that the state of Japan denies truth and violates peoples lives. Its time to get rid of Abe et al.

Prosecutors drop TEPCO case over radioactive water leakage

FUKUSHIMA–The Fukushima District Public Prosecutor’s Office announced on March 29 that it will not prosecute Tokyo Electric Power Co. or its executives for violating an environmental pollution law.

The decision came two and a half years after a group of plaintiffs, including residents of Fukushima Prefecture, filed a criminal complaint against TEPCO, operator of the crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant, and its 32 current and former executives.

The group sought to bring charges against the utility and its executives for allowing radioactive contaminated water to be discharged into the sea.

In its decision, the prosecutors said there was “insufficient” evidence to press charges against TEPCO and some of its executives, including Naomi Hirose, company president. The remaining executives, the prosecutors said, “had no authority or responsibility to set measures to avoid the leakage in the first place,” therefore, the accusation has “no grounds.”

“The Fukushima police investigated the case for almost two years. It is extremely disappointing,” said Ruiko Muto, 62, the head of the plaintiff’s group, at a news conference in Tokyo on March 29. “We wanted them to look into the case further. We can’t accept this decision.”

The group is planning to appeal to the Committee for the Inquest of Prosecution. The group will meet with its lawyers on March 30 and decide on whether it will pursue further action.

http://ajw.asahi.com/article/0311disaster/fukushima/AJ201603300068

Charges ruled out for Tepco figures over Fukushima No. 1 radioactive water spillage into sea

FUKUSHIMA – Public prosecutors decided on Tuesday not to indict Tokyo Electric Power Co. President Naomi Hirose and other current and former executives of the utility over radioactive water leaks from the crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant into the ocean.

Sufficient evidence was not found, the Fukushima District Public Prosecutor’s Office said.

In September 2013, a civic group filed a criminal complaint against 32 current and former Tepco executives, including Hirose and Tsunehisa Katsumata, former chairman of the operator of the northeastern nuclear power plant, saying tainted water leaked from storage tanks into the ocean due to their failure to take preventive measures.

Through its investigation, the Fukushima Prefectural Police concluded that some 300 tons of stored radioactive water had flowed into the sea as of July 2013 because Tepco executives neglected to monitor the tanks or take leak-prevention measures, and sent the case to the prosecutors last October.

The prosecutors said there was no evidence supporting the allegation that the leaked tainted water was carried into the sea by groundwater at the plant, which suffered meltdowns following the massive earthquake and tsunami in March 2011.

The group said it will ask for a prosecution inquest panel’s investigation.

http://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2016/03/30/national/crime-legal/charges-ruled-tepco-figures-fukushima-no-1-radioactive-water-spillage-sea/#.VvtU1-IrLIU

 

March 30, 2016 Posted by | Fukushima 2016 | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Look At The Millions Of Bags Of Radioactive Dirt That Japan Has No Plan For

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Five years after the meltdowns at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant, Japan still faces another four decades or more of cleanup. One of many problems is what to do with the massive amount of contaminated soil from the site—which is now in a growing pile of bags stacked on former farms in Fukushima.

A new photo series from Japan-based photographer James Whitlow Delano documents the sprawl of nuclear waste.

 

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As of 2015, the government reported that there were more than 9 million bags in the prefecture. Some of it will be moved inside the no-entry zone next to the nuclear plant, which is so radioactive that the government has given up on decontamination for the moment. But Japan is also sending radioactive waste to other parts of the country.

 

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“The Japanese government decided early on in the decontamination process that all prefectures in Japan should share the burden of storing radioactive waste with Fukushima Prefecture,” says Delano, who has been photographing the disaster since it happened in 2011. “This resulted in firm pushback by communities in other prefectures that are adjacent to sites that were selected.”

They have reason to be concerned: In September of 2015, when there were floods in Nikko, Japan, hundreds of bags of radioactive soil were washed into the local river.

Even in Fukushima itself, in villages where many residents may not be able to return for a decade or more, no one wants a radioactive dump next to their former homes. The dumps are supposed to be temporary and moved in 30 years, but people are skeptical that will happen. “They feel like the presence of the site will be like the last nail in the coffin for their communities,” he says. “So, no one wants this contaminated soil.”

 

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In some areas, a few people have started moving back. “When I used to sneak inside the old 20-kilometer-radius nuclear no-entry zone, I would enter a neighborhood in Minami Soma that was half inside the zone and half outside and hop the barrier to document the absence of humanity,” says Delano. “About one and a half years after the earthquake and tsunami, the no-entry zone was readjusted to reflect the actual radiation levels, instead of being an arbitrary 20-kilometer radius. That meant that the whole neighborhood would be decontaminated and prepared for families to return, if they wanted to do so.”

Some resident returned, but now the fields next to the neighborhood are being cleared for a dump filled with bags of contaminated soil. “People fear the presence of this soil and the dust that every breeze will carry into their neighbor,” he says. “It creates fear and doubt. Many families, especially those with young children, are not returning to this region of Fukushima Prefecture.”

 

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Delano was reluctant to spend much time in the area himself, and carried a Geiger counter and wore a mask while he worked. “I always do my work and get out,” he says. “For example, one hot spot I found in 2012 would expose you to the equivalent of an additional year of natural radiation exposure within 24 hours, if you were to sit there. For obvious reasons, I did not linger there.”

For him, the disaster was personal—he’s lived in Japan for two decades and has Japanese family. Even in Tokyo, the food supply has been affected, and foods are now labeled with the prefecture where they were grown. “You can be careful, but once you go to a restaurant or buy a bento box lunch, all bets are off,” he says.

He also wanted to show how much the area—which was once a peaceful, Vermont-like region of farms—has changed. “It is some of the most beautiful country in Japan,” he says. “This natural beauty only reinforces the sense of loss.”

 

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http://www.fastcoexist.com/3058303/look-at-the-millions-of-bags-of-radioactive-dirt-that-japan-has-no-plan-for/4

March 30, 2016 Posted by | Fukushima 2016 | , | Leave a comment