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Panel holds 1st meeting to examine TEPCO’s meltdown judgment process

The outcome of this Tepco’s investigating Tepco will be for sure just another “We are very sorry” accompanied by three deep bows down the road…

 

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A third party investigative panel set up by Tokyo Electric Power Co. held its first meeting Thursday to examine how the utility reached its conclusion on meltdowns at its Fukushima plant in the 2011 nuclear crisis after the company admitted recently it could have made an judgment sooner than it did.

 

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“Local people in Fukushima are still having a difficult time even five years after the accident,” Yasuhisa Tanaka, a lawyer and chairman of the panel, said ahead of the meeting. He is also former chief justice of the Sendai High Court.

“As it has been pointed out that Tokyo Electric didn’t provide enough information, we have to address various issues including how information should be provided.”

The three-member panel, including two other lawyers, was established after TEPCO said last month it failed to use its internal operation manual that contains criteria for judging core meltdowns after a massive earthquake and tsunami struck its Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant on March 11, 2011.

TEPCO could have determined that nuclear core meltdowns occurred at the plant three days after the complex was crippled, based on the manual that defines meltdowns as damage to more than 5 percent of a reactor core.

But the utility initially just said reactors cores had been damaged and did not acknowledge the meltdowns until May 2011, even as analysis of the plant’s situation showed some reactors had damage to more than 5 percent of their reactor cores as of March 14 that year.

Early in the crisis, the company said there was no basis to determine reactor core meltdowns.

Later analysis found that the No. 3 unit had damage to 30 percent of its reactor core and that 55 percent of the No. 1 reactor’s core was damaged, both as of March 14, 2011.

TEPCO said in late February this year that it discovered the manual while investigating how it responded to the Fukushima disaster at the request of Niigata Prefecture. The power company aims to restart a nuclear power plant in the prefecture.

Earlier this month, TEPCO President Naomi Hirose offered an apology over the revelation that the company underestimated the severity of the accident at a meeting of the House of Councillors Budget Committee.

“There are various questions such as why (the company) wasn’t able to use the manual and why it took so long to discover it. We hope (the panel) will conduct strict investigations and we will take measures” based on the outcome, Hirose said Thursday prior to the meeting.

TEPCO will disclose the outcome of discussions at the panel as soon as they are concluded.

http://kyodonews.net/news/2016/03/17/53605

 

March 17, 2016 Posted by | Fukushima 2016 | , , | Leave a comment

Embassy halts Fukushima disaster exhibit in Ethiopia to stop groundless rumors

A vice foreign minister apologized after an exhibition in Ethiopia about the Fukushima nuclear disaster was scrapped following complaints from the Japanese Embassy that the content was “inappropriate.”

The exhibition, planned by volunteers of the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), was supposed to be part of the Japan Festival held in the Ethiopian capital of Addis Ababa on Oct. 31, 2015.

The festival, jointly hosted by the Japanese Embassy, JICA and other entities to promote a better understanding of Japan, went off as scheduled in the east African nation. But the exhibition about the accident at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant was called off after the embassy warned that it might withdraw its participation in the event.

Vice Foreign Minister Seiji Kihara on March 16 apologized for having completely shut the door on the Fukushima exhibition.

“It is important to make known the actual situation in the disaster-hit areas, including Fukushima, so we should have continued our discussions with the aim of holding the exhibition,” Kihara said at a meeting of the Lower House Committee on Foreign Affairs.

JICA’s volunteers, including members of the Japan Overseas Cooperation Volunteers, conceived the idea for the Fukushima exhibition.

An official of the Japanese Embassy, however, criticized the content, telling the volunteers, “It is inappropriate at a time when the central government is working hard to dispel groundless rumors regarding the disaster.”

JICA also said it received an e-mail from the embassy that said, “If the exhibition is one that runs counter to the policies of the central government, such as by taking an ‘anti-nuclear’ stance, it would be difficult for us to jointly host the event.”

After the e-mail was received, JICA’s local office agreed to cancel the exhibition, JICA said.

http://ajw.asahi.com/article/behind_news/social_affairs/AJ201603170035

March 17, 2016 Posted by | Fukushima 2016 | , , , , , | Leave a comment

The nuclear industry’s game plan to take your money and keep reactors operating

GreenWorld

Exelon again threatens to close its aging, uneconomic, Fukushima-clone Quad Cities reactors--a threat that would be better as a promise. Exelon again threatens to close its aging, uneconomic, Fukushima-clone Quad Cities reactors–a threat that would be better as a promise.

With the failure of last decade’s nuclear “renaissance” leading to dismal prospects for expansion, and rising operating costs–including modest and insufficient post-Fukushima improvements–making a large number of existing reactors uneconomic in the deregulated marketplace, the nuclear power industry over the past couple of years has focused on its sheer survival. This means bailouts in one form or another.

This isn’t a surprise to regular readers of GreenWorld, as we’ve chronicled the increasingly desperate efforts by utilities like Exelon and FirstEnergy to obtain taxpayer and/or ratepayer bailouts of aging, dangerous and uneconomic reactors like Quad Cities and Davis-Besse.

Typically, the utilities threaten to close reactors if they don’t get what they want, which could lead to job losses and drops in tax revenues. In reality, state legislators and regulators should look…

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March 17, 2016 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

March 17 Energy News

geoharvey

Science and Technology:

¶ Nearly a quarter of all deaths around the world are caused by living and working in toxic and polluted environments, and the worst affected are children, the poor, and the elderly, according to a new report released by the World Health Organization (WHO). [CommonDreams]

A child scavenges for coal scraps in a slum in Manila. (Photo: Adam Cohn / flickr / cc.) A child scavenges for coal scraps in a slum in Manila.
(Photo: Adam Cohn / flickr / cc.)

¶ NOAA’s Mauna Loa Observatory in Hawaii reported a spike in CO2 levels this week, 3.05 ppm, which was the largest year-to-year increase ever observed in the 56 years of recording and research done at the station. It was the fourth consecutive year that CO2 grew more than 2 ppm. [CleanTechnica]

World:

¶ Ontario’s Independent Electricity System Operator awarded around 140 MW of new solar energy project contracts at a weighted average price of CAN$0.1567/kWh (US$0.12/kWh). The solar energy allocation…

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March 17, 2016 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

India, Day 5 of the Accident in Kakrapar: Leak Continues, Just Assurances on Radiation, No Transparency

Mining Awareness +

Kakrapar Atomic Power Station India

Even as, insanely, “Sites for 46 new reactors approved ‘in-principle’: Govt” of India, March 10, 2016 http://news.statetimes.in/sites-46-new-reactors-approved-principle-govt/

Dianuke.org reports:
Day 5 of the Accident in Kakrapar: Leak Continues, Just Assurances on Radiation, No Transparency
MARCH 16, 2016
Kumar Sundaram
Day 5 of the ongoing nuclear accident in Kakrapar, Gujarat, India.

No update whether the leak has been fixed. No sharing of actual radiation measurements with the public so far.

Yesterday, the AERB issued a statement. It said the leak, which it earlier said is large, is continuing and the plant authorities continue to pour coolant. On radiation counts and condition of workers, again just reassurancesand not actual radiation readings from inside and around the plant.

When the Fukushima accident happened, sitting in Delhi i got live radiation counts from the operator’s website where counts from devices installed in all directions of the plant were updated…

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March 17, 2016 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

#NuclearCommissionSAust and the murky world of international finance

Nuclear Australia

Scarce wastes money

Response to the Tentative Findings of the SA Nuclear Fuel Cycle Royal Commission A Submission by Paul Langley Nuclear Exhaust 16 Mar 16  “…..The Law and the Profits.

Nuclear nations all have their own laws regarding nuclear matters. For instance the United States has many laws, including the Atomic Energy Act, as currently amended, associated laws and regulations. It has long been an issue that the US Act prevents full disclosure regarding “special nuclear material” – that is plutonium and uranium as used and produced in a reactor. This matter has long been a concern in the US democratic setting. For instance, see CARDOZO LAW REVIEW, VOL 26, NO 4, MARCH 2005, PP. 1401-8.

The HLNW repository is promoted by the Royal Commission as being South Australian, owned by the government and benefitting the people of SA. To what extent then, in the course of contract negotiations, will the…

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March 17, 2016 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

March 16 Energy News

geoharvey

Opinion:

How Google Became to World’s Largest Corporate Purchaser of Renewable Energy • The Google approach to renewable energy is not unlike how many utilities purchase power. It often enters into power purchase agreements, and its projects range from California to Sweden. [Triple Pundit]

Wind turbines. Image Credit: Flickr/naql Wind turbines. Image Credit: Flickr/naql

World:

¶ A report from the UK’s Offshore Wind Program Board outlined how investment in turbine technology has delivered significant cost benefits to the offshore wind industry. It says costs fell through 2015 and remain on track to fall to its target of £100/MWh by 2020. [CleanTechnica]

¶ Climate change efforts may be bearing fruit faster than expected. Energy-related carbon emissions stayed flat for the second consecutive year last year even though the global economy kept growing. Over 90% of new electricity generated last year was from renewables. [The Australian Financial Review]

More than 90% of new electricity generated last year came from renewables. Fairfax More than…

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March 17, 2016 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Solar Initiative for Appalachia, American Indian Tribal Lands and Beyond

Mining Awareness +

Bernie Sanders has a track record of pushing for nuclear safety and renewable energy. Everyone who loves life and the environment had better support him, even if not in agreement with his other policies. Remember Comley for President, too. It’s too late for Comley to get the Republican nomination but since, like Sanders, he’s really an independent, he might still be a VP for either Sanders or Trump, or even Hillary for that matter. Hillary’s plan is to promote solar, all while still wastefully throwing away taxpayer money on so-called new nuclear tech, which appears non-existent. All of the so-called new nuclear seems to be old, often dangerously failed, nuclear tech from 50 to 70 years ago – in short, lethal pork-barrel. The only safe nuclear power is the sun. Farrington Daniels, former director of the Manhattan project, came to that conclusion a long, long time ago – Sixty-nine years…

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March 17, 2016 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

#NuclearIsDirty

GreenWorld

From the beginning of the nuclear fuel chain exemplified here by Australia's Ranger uranium mine, to the end of the chain characterized by lethal radioactive waste with no scientifically-defensible storage method, nuclear energy is dirty energy. From the beginning of the nuclear fuel chain exemplified here by Australia’s Ranger uranium mine, to the end of the chain characterized by lethal radioactive waste with no scientifically-defensible storage method, nuclear energy is dirty energy.

NIRS is launching a new campaign today, called #NuclearIsDirty. Over the next twelve weeks, we will be rolling it out through a series of online events, publications, and social media forums. #NuclearIsDirty is a forum to inform the public of the real environmental impacts of nuclear power, from the mining of uranium and production of reactor fuel, all the way through to the long-term storage and management of radioactive waste.

The rollout series will follow the story of that nuclear fuel chain, combining technical information with testimony from real people whose communities are affected. As you know from our commentary and advocacy in the pages of GreenWorld, NIRS is committed to a nuclear-free…

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March 17, 2016 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Climate: New study shows how warm ocean currents affect Antarctic ice shelves

Summit County Citizens Voice

Erosion from beneath could lead to more sea-level rise

hlj If floating Antarctic ice sheets disintegrate, land-based glaciers and ice sheets will flow much faster to the sea, speeding sea level rise. @bberwyn photo.

Staff Report

Oceans warming under a thickening blanket of greenhouse gases are licking at the edge of Antarctica and carving new channels in the bottom of ice shelves all around the frozen continent, researchers said this week in a new study led by scientists with the National Snow and Ice Data Center.

Those channels, characterized as “upside-down rivers” by the scientists, may make the ice shelves more prone to collapsing, which could speed up the flow of ice and the increase the rate of sea-level rise. Overall, some Antarctic ice sheets have thinned by about 18 percent and the rate of melting is accelerating, other research shows.

The findings, published in Nature Geoscience, are based on…

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March 17, 2016 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Previous submissions to #NuclearCommissionSAust

March 17, 2016 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

It’s not just cancer! Radiation, genomic instability and heritable genetic damage

Chris Busby – 17th March 2016

Cancer is just one of of the outcomes of the genetic damage inflicted by nuclear radiation, writes Chris Busby, and perhaps one of the least important. Of far greater long term significance is the broad-scale mutation of the human genome, and those of other species, and the resulting genomic instability that causes cascades of heritable mutations through the generations.

Those who fear the effects of radiation always focus on cancer. But the most frightening and serious consequences of radiation are genetic.

Cancer is just one small bleak reflection, a flash of cold light from a facet of the iceberg of genetic damage to life on Earth constructed from human folly, power-lust and stupidity.

Cancer is a genetic disease expressed at the cellular level. But genetic effects are transmitted across the generations.

It was Herman Joseph Muller, an American scientist, who discovered the most serious effects of ionizing radiation – hereditary defects in the descendants of exposed parents – in the 1920s. He exposed fruit flies – drosophila – to X-rays and found malformations and other disorders in the following generations.

He concluded from his investigations that low dose exposure, and therefore even natural background radiation, is mutagenic and there is no harmless dose range for heritable effects or for cancer induction. His work was honoured by the Nobel Prize for medicine in 1946.

In the 1950s Muller warned about the effects on the human genetic pool caused by the production low level radioactive contamination from atmospheric tests. I have his original 1950 report, which is a rare item now.

Muller, as a famous expert in radiation, was designated as a speaker at the Conference, ‘Atoms for Peace’ in Geneva in 1955 where the large scale use of nuclear energy (too cheap to meter) was announced by President Eisenhower. But when the organisers became aware that Muller had warned about the deterioration of the human gene pool by the contamination of the planet from the weapon test fallout, his invitation was cancelled.

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz

The protective legislation of western governments does, of course, concede that radiation has such genetic effects. The laws regulating exposure are based on the risk model of the International Commission on Radiological Protection, the ICRP.

The rules say that no one is allowed to receive more than 1mSv of dose in a year from man-made activities. The ICRP’s scientific model for heritable effects is based on mice; this is because ICRP states that there is no evidence that radiation causes any heritable effects in humans.

The dose required to double the risk of heritable damage according to the ICRP is more than 1000mSv. This reliance on mice has followed from the studies of the offspring of those who were present in Hiroshima and Nagasaki by the Japanese/ US Atomic Bomb Casualty Commission (ABCC).

These studies were begun in 1952 and assembled groups of people in the bombed cities to compare cancer rates and also birth outcomes in those exposed at different levels according to their distance from the position of the bomb detonation, the hypocentre. The entire citadel of radiation risk is built upon this ABCC rock.

But the rock was constructed with smoke and mirrors and everything about the epidemiology is false. There have been a number of criticisms of the A-Bomb Lifespan Studies of cancer: it was a survivor population, doses were external, residual contamination was ignored, it began seven years after the event, the original zero dose control group was abandoned as being “too healthy”, and many others.

But we are concerned here with the heritable effects, the birth defects, the congenital malformations, the miscarriages and stillbirths. The problem here is that for heritable damage effects to show up, there have to be births. As you increase the exposures to radiation, you quickly obtain sterility and there are no pregnancies. We found this in the nuclear test veterans.

Then at lower doses, damaged sperm results in damaged foetuses and miscarriages. When both mother and father are exposed, there are miscarriages and stillbirths before you see any birth defects. So the dose response relation is not linear. At the higher doses there are no effects. The effects all appear at the lowest doses.

Bad epidemiology is easily manipulated

As far as the ABCC studies are concerned, there is another serious (and I would say dishonest) error in the epidemiology. Those people discarded their control population in favour of using the low dose group as a control.

This is such bad epidemiology that it should leave any honest reviewer breathless. But there were no reviewers. Or at least no-one seemed to care. Perhaps they didn’t dig deeply enough. In passing, the same method is now being used to assess risk in the huge INWORKS nuclear worker studies and no-one has raised this point there either.

Anyway, the ABCC scientists in charge of the genetic studies found the same levels of adverse birth outcomes in their exposed and their control groups, and concluded that there was no effect from the radiation.

Based on this nonsense, ICRP writes in their latest 2007 risk model, ICRP103, Appendix B.2.01, that “Radiation induced heritable disease has not been demonstrated in human populations.”

But it has. If we move away from this USA controlled, nuclear military complex controlled A-Bomb study and look in the real world we find that Muller was right to be worried. The radioactive contamination of the planet has killed tens of millions of babies, caused a huge increase in infertility, and increased the genetic burden of the human race and life on earth.

And now the truth is out!

In January of this year Prof. Inge Schmitz-Feuerhake, of the University of Bremen, Dr Sebastian Pflugbeil of the German Society for Radioprotection and I published a Special Topic paper in the prestigious peer-review journal Environmental Health and Toxicology. The title is: ‘Genetic Radiation Risks – a neglected topic in the Low Dose debate‘.

In this paper we collected together all the evidence which has been published outside the single Japanese ABCC study in order to calculate the true genetic effects of radiation exposure. The outcome was sobering, but not unexpected.

Using evidence ranging from Chernobyl to the nuclear Test Veterans to the offspring of radiographers we showed clearly that a dose of 1mSv from internal contamination was able to cause a 50% increase in congenital malformations. This identifies an error in the ICRP model and in the current legislation of a factor of 1,000. And we write this down. The conclusion of the paper states:

“Genetically induced malformations, cancers, and numerous other health effects in the children of populations who were exposed to low doses of ionizing radiation have been unequivocally demonstrated in scientific investigations.

“Using data from Chernobyl effects we find a new Excess Relative Risk (ERR) for Congenital malformations of 0.5 per mSv at 1mSv falling to 0.1 per mSv at 10mSv exposure and thereafter remaining roughly constant. This is for mixed fission products as defined though external exposure to Cs-137.

“Results show that current radiation risk models fail to predict or explain the many observations and should be abandoned. Further research and analysis of previous data is suggested, but prior assumptions of linear dose response, assumptions that internal exposures can be modelled using external risk factors, that chronic and acute exposures give comparable risks and finally dependence on interpretations of the high dose ABCC studies are all seen to be unsafe procedures.”

Radiation causes genomic instability

Our paper is available on the web as a free download, so you can see what we wrote and follow up the 80 or so references we used to construct the case.

Most of the evidence is from effects reported in countries contaminated by the Chernobyl accident, not only in Belarus and Ukraine but in wider Europe where doses were less than 1mSv. Other evidence we referred to was from the offspring of the nuclear test veterans.

In a study I published in 2014 of the offspring of members of the British Nuclear Test Veterans Association (BNTVA) we saw a 9-fold excess of congenital disease in the children but also, and unexpectedly, an eight-fold excess in the grandchildren. This raises a new and frightening spectre not anticipated by Herman Muller.

In the last 15 years it has become clear that radiation causes genomic instability: experiments in the laboratory and animal studies show that radiation exposure throws some kind of genetic switch which causes a non-specific increase in general mutation rates.

Up until these genomic instability discoveries it was thought that genetic processes followed the laws of Gregor Mendel: there were specific dominant and recessive gene mutations that were passed down the generation and became diluted through a binomial process as offspring married away.

But radiation scientists and cancer researchers could not square the background mutation rate with the increased risks of cancer with age: the numbers didn’t fit. The discovery of the genomic instability process was the answer to the puzzle: it introduces enough random mutations to explain the observations.

It is this that supplies the horrifying explanation for the continuing high risk of birth defects in Fallujah and other areas where the exposures occurred ten to twenty years ago. Similar several generation effects have been seen in animals from Chernobyl.

Neonatal mortality in the nuclear bomb era

So where does that leave us? What can we do with this? What can we conclude? How can this change anything? Let’s start by looking at the effects of the biggest single injection of these radioactive contaminants, the atmospheric weapons tests of the period 1952 to 1963.

If these caused increases in birth defects and genetic damage we should see something in the data. We do. The results are chilling. If babies are damaged they die at or shortly before birth. This will show up in the vital statistics data of any country which collects and publishes it.

In Fig 1 (above right) I show a graph of the first day (neonatal) mortality rates in the USA from 1936 to 1985. You can see that as social conditions improved there was a fall in the rates between the beginning and end of the period, and we can obtain this by calculating what the background should have been using a statistical process called regression.

The expected backgound is shown as a thin blue line. Also superimposed is the concentration of Strontium-90 in milk (in red) and its concentration in the bones of dead infants (in blue). The graph shows first day neonatal mortality in the USA; it is taken from a paper by Canadian paediatrician Robin Whyte (woman) in the British Medical Journal in 1992. This paper shows the same effect in neonatal (1 month) mortality and stillbirths in the USA and also the United Kingdom. The doses from the Strontium-90 were less than 0.5mSv.

This is in line with what we found in our paper from Chernobyl and the other examples of human exposures. The issue was first raised by the late Prof Ernest Sternglass, one of the first of the radiation warrior-scientists and a friend of mine. The cover-ups and denials of these effects are part of the biggest public health scandal in human history.

It continues and has come to a venue near you: our study of Hinkley Point showed significant increased infant mortality downwind of the plant at Burnham on Sea as I wrote in The Ecologist.

It’s official – genetic damage in children is an indicator of harmful exposures to the father

As to what we can do with this new peer-reviewed evidence we can (and we shall) put it before the Nuclear Test Veterans case in the Pensions Appeals hearings in the Royal Courts of Justice which is tabled for three weeks from June 14th 2016 before a tribunal headed by high court judge Sir Nicholas Blake.

I represent two of the appellants in this hearing and will bring in the genetic damage in the children and grandchildren as evidence of genetic damage in the father.

We are calling Inge Schmitz-Feuerhake, the author of the genetic paper, as one expert witness; the judge has conceded that genetic damage in the children is an indicator of harmful exposures to the father. He has made a disclosure order to the University of Dundee to release the veteran questionnaires. They have.

Finally, I must share with you a window into the mind-set of the false scientists who work for the military and nuclear operation. As the fallout Strontium-90 built up in milk and in childrens’ bones and was being measured, they renamed the units of contamination, (picoCuries Sr-90 per gram of Calcium) ‘Sunshine Units’.

Can you imagine? I would ship them all to Nuremberg for that alone.

http://www.theecologist.org/News/news_analysis/2987395/its_not_just_cancer_radiation_genomic_instability_and_heritable_genetic_damage.html

 


 

The paper:Genetic Radiation Risks – a neglected topic in the Low Dose debate‘ is published in Environmental Health and Toxicology.

March 17, 2016 Posted by | Nuclear | , , | Leave a comment

Contaminated Waste in Tomioka, Fukushima

Welcome to Tomioka, Fukushima.

Enjoy the beautiful scenery and have a pleasant sight-seeing!

https://youtu.be/qqTwxa2ir_E

March 17, 2016 Posted by | Fukushima 2016 | , | Leave a comment

Time to get serious about evacuations from nuclear disasters

For example the evacuation plan from Satsuma-Sendai in case of an nuclear accident at the Sendai nuclear plan is totally unrealistic, due to many reasons.

The most important one is that the roads and transports available in that area would quickly cause a bottleneck into which  evacuating people would become  trapped with no real  possiblity of a fast evacuation out.

 

hjkll.jpg

A man is checked for radiation doses during an evacuation drill in Kagoshima in December 2015 in preparation for an accident at the Sendai nuclear power plant in neighboring Satsuma-Sendai.

Nearly half of the radiation monitoring posts installed for issuing evacuation orders around the Sendai nuclear power plant in Kagoshima Prefecture have been found unable to perform the required function.

Twenty-two of the 48 monitoring posts around Kyushu Electric Power Co.’s Sendai plant can only measure airborne radiation levels up to 80 microsieverts per hour, far below the 500-microsievert threshold that triggers immediate evacuation orders, according to a survey by The Asahi Shimbun.

The survey also found that monitoring devices have not been installed at many of the designated locations around Kansai Electric Power Co.’s Takahama nuclear power plant, where two reactors were restarted in January and February.

The two reactors, however, are now out of service again in line with a recently issued court injunction.

These findings mean there are insufficiencies in the way to obtain crucial data for deciding on whether to evacuate local residents from areas around these nuclear plants during severe accidents.

Despite these serious safety lapses, reactors at the two plants were brought online. How seriously do the utilities, central and local governments take the safety of residents?

Nearby local governments that are in a position to monitor nuclear accidents by using these devices should ask the utilities to suspend reactor operations at least until useful radiation measuring instruments have been installed at all the posts.

Following the triple meltdown at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant, triggered by the Great East Japan Earthquake and tsunami in March 2011, the central government revised its guidelines on responding to nuclear disasters.

The revised guidelines mandate immediate evacuations of residents within 5 kilometers of a nuclear plant where a serious accident has taken place. Residents living between 5 km and 30 km from an accident-stricken plant will be required to stay indoors while the central government decides whether to order evacuations based on radiation levels detected by the monitoring posts.

Immediate evacuations will be ordered if radiation levels reach 500 microsieverts per hour. If radiation levels rise to and stay at 20 microsieverts per hour for an entire day, residents will be ordered to evacuate within a week. In both cases, the central government will issue the orders.

If the network of radiation monitoring posts fails to function properly, evacuation decisions for specific areas could be delayed or misguided.

With financial support from the central government, local governments concerned are required to install these monitoring posts. It is baffling why the local governments that host the two plants consented to the reactor restarts despite the insufficient monitoring installations.

The Nuclear Regulation Authority should not be allowed to shirk responsibility for the matter by claiming that dealing with issues related to the evacuations of residents is not part of its mandate.

The SPEEDI radioactive fallout-forecasting system failed to work properly during the Fukushima nuclear crisis. So the NRA decided to replace the SPEEDI system with networks of monitoring posts to measure radiation levels around nuclear plants for making evacuation decisions.

The NRA should be the one that checks if the posts will be workable in actual accidents.

Even the stricter nuclear safety standards cannot completely eliminate the risk of accidents. That makes it vital to make adequate preparations based on the assumption that nuclear disasters can occur.

The belated acceptance of this internationally common premise doesn’t amount to much if such a lax attitude is taken toward evacuations.

The principle that local governments should take the responsibility to protect local residents from various disasters is reasonable to a certain extent.

However, as far as nuclear disasters are concerned, this principle should not allow the central government to avoid playing a key role and shuffle off its responsibility.

The system needs changes so that the effectiveness of evacuation plans will be sufficiently checked by the central government and especially by the NRA, which has the necessary expertise.

Such reforms will prevent the restarts of reactors under such inadequate evacuation conditions by ensuring central government inspections in addition to safety checks by the local governments concerned.

In some disasters, individuals can make their own decisions concerning their safety. But a nuclear accident is not one of them.

Both the central and local governments should play far greater roles and assume far more important responsibilities in nuclear accidents than in other kinds of disasters.

http://ajw.asahi.com/article/views/editorial/AJ201603150037

March 17, 2016 Posted by | Japan | , | Leave a comment

Video version of Nuclear Hotseat 247

10,000+ Excess Cancer Cases Post-Fukushima: PSR/IPPNW Report – Thomasson, Rosen, Mousseau, Alvarez in Nuclear Hotseat #247 http://tinyurl.com/gqz5lup
Published on 16 Mar 2016

MsMilkytheclown1

The PSR/IPPNW report released last week projecting at least 10,000 excess cancer cases in Japan because of the radioactivity releases from the ongoing Fukushima nuclear disaster. We’ll hear from:
Dr. Catherine Thomasson, Executive Director of Physicians for Social Responsibility; http://www.psr.org/
Dr. Alex Rosen of International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War; http://ippnw.org/
Tim Mousseau, PhD, a Professor of Biological Sciences at the University of South Carolina and on-the-ground researcher into insect and animal mutations at Chernobyl and Fukushima http://tinyurl.com/gsyfbfn . Link to Nuclear Hotseat #243 featuring extended interview w/Tim Mousseau http://tinyurl.com/zymttnr or video format here: https://youtu.be/IalMgZ_kNdc
Bob Alvarez, who specializes in nuclear disarmament, environmental and energy policies for the Institute for Policy Studies. http://www.ips-dc.org/

10,000+ Excess Cancer Cases Post-Fukushima: PSR/IPPNW Report – Thomasson, Rosen, Mousseau, Alvarez in Nuclear Hotseat #247 http://tinyurl.com/gqz5lup

Arnie Gundersen’s Fairewinds Energy Education web site here: http://www.fairewinds.org/ Please consider donating at his web site.

Link to full PSR/IPPNW Report, “5 Years Living with Fukushima” – CLICK HERE. http://tinyurl.com/gsyfbfn

Numnutz of the Week:
Tone deaf, brain dead Japanese Minister for the 2020 Tokyo NOlympics announces continued support for siting team sports in Fukushima… AND MAKES THE ANNOUNCEMENT ON THE FIFTH ANNIVERSARY OF THE START OF THE NUCLEAR DISASTER THERE!

BONUS Links:
Reality of Fukushima is Unrecoverable: Interview with Fukushima farmer Kazuya Tarukawa http://tinyurl.com/h9ceruw
The Fukushima Nuclear Disaster is a Serious Crime: Interview with Koide Hiroaki http://tinyurl.com/gu2yrbm
The Mothers who Set Up a Radiation Lab http://tinyurl.com/hfjqhye
The IAEA Tries to Cover Up Another Nuclear Health Issue in Europe http://tinyurl.com/zzjcdzb
India’s Prime Minister Modi in the Grip of the Global Nuclear Salesmen http://tinyurl.com/z7hldmb
Profitable Element, Powerful Entity: Saskatchewan’s Uranium Industry and Dene Ecology http://tinyurl.com/z4644nz
UK Minister and Member of Parliament: “I Was Never Told the Truth by the Nuclear Industry” http://tinyurl.com/jqzh4be

March 17, 2016 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment