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Another risky earthquake near nuclear power plant in Iran #IranEarthquake

“The International Atomic Agency (IAEA) in Vienna says it has no mandate to certify the safety of nuclear plants as far as the risk of tremors is concerned but has established guidelines to deal with such eventualities. The IAEA does not carry out regular inspections of the Hellieh plant which is not included in the list of 32 nuclear sites it seeks to “keep under observation” in accordance with the controversial nuclear “deal” worked out by former US President Barack Obama.” 16th Nov 2017

5.1-magnitude earthquake strikes Iran region hit by deadly quake in Nov – state media

A magnitude 5.1 earthquake rocked western Iran on Saturday in the same area as a deadly November quake which left more than 600 people dead.

According to Iranian state television, there have been no immediate reports of casualties or damage.

The quake struck 21 kilometers from Sarpol-e Zahab in western Iran at a depth of 10 kilometers, according to the USGS.

On November 13 a powerful magnitude 7.3 quake devastated the northern border region between Iran and Iraq, making it the deadliest quake of 2017.

Source ;

READ MORE: Deadly quake hits Iran & Iraq: 400+ killed, over 6,700 injured

And a report from the last eartquake that mentions the nuclear plant;

Iran Earthquake Raises Concern over Nuclear Plant

Thursday, 16 November, 2017 – 06:30
London – Amir Taheri
As Iran mobilizes to deal with the aftermath of the strongest earthquake it has suffered since 2003, concern is rising about the safety of its only nuclear power station located in the Bushehr Peninsula on the Arabian Gulf.
The power plant was designed by the German company Siemens in 1971, bombed and partly destroyed by Saddam Hussein in 1981-82, and completed by a Russian company over a decade of on-and-off operations.The plant’s location on the site of old Hellieh village is one of the most earthquake-prone parts of the Iranian Plateau, upland of three parallel mountain ranges stretching from the Caucasus to Central Asia.

According to official records, the area where the station is located has suffered earthquakes in 1853, 1960,1972, 2013 and 2017. A 7.3-magnitude quake could plunge the whole Gulf into nuclear pollution.

In 1971, the Tehran University Geophysics Center warned against building a nuclear power station in Hellieh, Bushehr Peninsula on the Arabian Gulf, citing risk of earthquakes. Now the plant is there and deadly danger on the horizon. The Russian company that built the plant and continues to co-manage it claims that it can resist a tremor of up to 7 magnitude. However, there is no guarantee that the location will not be hit by a tremor of higher intensity on the Richter Scale.

“Assurances that the Hellieh plant can withstand a 7-magnitude tremor on the Richter Scale represent little more than semantics,” says Bahram Davami, one of the scientists who wrote the initial report, presented to the Shah, in 1971. “We have experienced many tremors of above 7 on Richter scale in Iran and there is no guarantee that the place where the nuclear station is built would not experience one.”

Because of direction of winds in the Gulf, damage to Iran’s Hellieh nuclear station in an earthquake above magnitude 7 would immediately affect Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar and eastern Saudi Arabia and pollute shallow waters of the Gulf.

Leakage of nuclear material into the waters of the Gulf could do extensive environmental damage to the waterway and its ecosystems and fish resources. The Gulf is nowhere deeper than 90 metres and its average depth close to the nuclear power plant is 55 metres.

According to experts, an additional problem is that it takes 15 years for the waters of the Gulf to be renewed, making the dissipation of any nuclear pollution a mid-term affair.

In 2008 Kuwaiti Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed Sabah al-Salem al-Sabah raised his country’s concerns with then Iran’s President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and was given “firm reassurances” that the Hellieh plant would withstand a strong earthquake. However Ahmadinejad never delivered on his promise to allow an international team of scientists acceptable to the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) members to study the project and prepare a report.

Historic records and accounts maintained in literature show that Iran has suffered more than 130 earthquakes since the 9th century AD. Some tremors claimed up to 200,000 lives and a number of Iranian cities never recovered from their effect. The destruction of Tabriz, now capital of East Azerbaijan province, in the 11th century has remained in Iranian historic memory as one of the greatest catastrophes of all times.

The earthquake in Ardabil claimed 150,000 lives and in Shamakhi, now in the Republic of Azerbaijan, 80,000. More recently the Torud quake caused over 50,000 deaths. The quake in Bam, southeast Iran, claimed 35,000 lives and that of Qir-and-Karzin, not far from the location of the nuclear plant, over 25,000.

The International Atomic Agency (IAEA) in Vienna says it has no mandate to certify the safety of nuclear plants as far as the risk of tremors is concerned but has established guidelines to deal with such eventualities. The IAEA does not carry out regular inspections of the Hellieh plant which is not included in the list of 32 nuclear sites it seeks to “keep under observation” in accordance with the controversial nuclear “deal” worked out by former US President Barack Obama.


January 6, 2018 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Fukushima Radiation Case Doesn’t Belong in US. Any conflicts of interest there?

Posted to

Posted on 6th Jan 2018

POsted by Shaun McGee aka arclight2011

On the unfortunate news that the court case for the US nuclear victims from the USS Ronald Reagan which was contaminated by a radioactive plume from the Fukushima Daichi nuclear disaster in 2011 has been rejected in the USA, I decided to look into the finances of the presiding judge (Judge Janis L Sammartino) who was overseeing the case in the courts on Friday 5 Jan 2018.

The latest financial disclosure I could find was from 2010;

Screenshot from 2018-01-06 10:57:21

Source of screenshot;

Looking at the companies listed I decided to see if there was any connection to the nuclear industry with these companies. First I looked at MiTEK;

Apr 3, 2014 – MiTek Industries has acquired Ellis & Watts Global Industries, a designer and fabricator of HVAC products for nuclear and military customers. Chesterfield-based MiTek, a supplier of engineered products, software and equipment for the construction industry that’s owned by Berkshire Hathaway, said Batavia …

And the link to the company can be found here;

MiTek is comprised of more than 40 companies operating in nearly 100 countries globally, providing a broad array of products and services. Together, we deliver a powerful combination of engineered products and technologies to customers in the ever-evolving building industry.

Secondly, I looked at Fiserv, an investment company and I found a link to Fiserv`s technology officer;

In 1999, Jim was asked to join GE as their first e-commerce attorney. Jack Welch had just announced that the “E in GE stands for E-commerce” and Jim thought that it would be a great challenge to participate in the “digital transformation” of the large multinational company. While at GE, he managed the legal and compliance aspects of over 500 “business digitization” projects, and took advantage of GE leadership and quality training courses. In 2003, with privacy issues becoming more prominent, Jim was named “Chief Privacy Leader” for GE, and led GE’s pioneering initiative to implement Binding Corporate Rules for the transfer of personal data from Europe, personally meeting with dozens of European data protection officials. Eventually, though, it became apparent that Jim would have to move his family away from Atlanta to continue with GE, and he began searching for opportunities closer to home.

In 2005, Atlanta’s CheckFree was looking for a Chief Privacy Officer and decided that Jim would be the perfect person for the role. In December 2007, CheckFree was acquired by Fiserv, Inc. and Jim became the Chief Privacy Officer of the combined organization. Among other duties, Jim provides privacy and regulatory compliance guidance for the Fiserv Enterprise Risk and Resilience program. Founded in 1984, Fiserv (NASDAQ: FISV ) is a leading global technology provider serving the financial services industry , with over 500 products and service offerings. Fiserv had 2012 revenue of $4.48 Billion, has over 20,000 employees, and has over 16,000 clients in 106 countries, including relationships with all 100 of the top 100 U.S. banking institutions.

And TEVA pharamaceutical industries which makes resin for nuclear waste containers. This company is in the process of being bought out because of financial difficulties.

Nov 5, 2017 – JERUSALEM, Nov 5 (Reuters) – Billionaire businessman Len Blavatnik is looking to buy a significant stake in debt-ridden Israeli drugmaker Teva Pharmaceutical Industries, according to Israeli media reports. Two of Israel’s leading financial news outlets, Globes and The Marker, reported on Sunday that …

And it might be worth pointing out from a Guardian report on Len Blavatnik that this billionaire has some interesting buisness practises;

His charitable donations have been described as some of the most generous ever made in the UK, but unease about Sir Leonard Blavatnik’s philanthropy has grown after a leading political academic quit the University of Oxford. The Ukraine-born billionaire gave £75m to Oxford to …

It would be interesting to get an updated version of Judge Sammatino`s financial disclosures to confirm these connections still exist or when she divested from these companies. I leave the links and extracts above for any discerning journalist researcher or blogger to look into.


January 6, 2018 Posted by | Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Judge: Sailors’ Fukushima Radiation Case Doesn’t Belong in US

SAN DIEGO (CN) – A federal judge on Friday dismissed without prejudice the latest class action filed by hundreds of U.S. sailors exposed to radiation in the Fukushima, Japan, nuclear disaster, finding a San Diego courtroom isn’t the right place for the case.

U.S. District Judge Janis Sammartino issued a 15-page order dismissing the class action against Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TepCo) and General Electric, finding the service members who were stationed aboard the USS Ronald Reagan in San Diego have failed to establish how the Japanese utility’s acts were directed at California.

“There is no targeting here. Plaintiffs’ allegations that the effects of TepCo’s conduct were felt by American citizens while on U.S. ships, one of which with a home port of San Diego, are too attenuated to establish purposeful direction,” Sammartino wrote.

Sammartino added the sailors “have provided no information to support an assertion that TepCo knew its actions would cause harm likely to be suffered in California.”

In an email, class attorney Cate Edwards said, “We appreciate the time and attention that Judge Sammartino gave our arguments. Per her order, we intend to refile the case on behalf of the Bartel Plaintiffs and continue to fight for the justice these sailors deserve. We will also be moving forward with the Cooper case in due course, and look forward to reaching the merits in that case.”

The judge’s order dismisses the most recent class action filed in San Diego Federal Court last August. It follows another class action filed by an initial group of sailors in 2012, a year after they were sent to render aid after the March 11, 2011 tsunami and earthquake which caused the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant to meltdown and release radiation. That case has survived dismissal and an appeal to the Ninth Circuit.

More than 420 U.S. service members in the two cases seek compensation and medical monitoring, testing and health care costs for exposure to radiation. Some sailors have died from complications of radiation exposure since the cases were filed, and more than 20 are living with cancer, according to the lawsuits.

In a court hearing Thursday, Sammartino considered the motions to dismiss from TepCo and GE. They argued California courts have no jurisdiction over events in Japan. Sammartino also considered a choice-of-law motion from General Electric, which wants to apply Japanese law to the case or have it transferred to Japan.

TepCo operated the Fukushima nuclear plant, and GE designed its reactors.

TepCo attorney Gregory Stone, with Munger, Tolles & Olson in Los Angeles, said at the Thursday hearing all claims brought in the United States could be brought in Japan and that the statute of limitations has not run out there.

GE attorney Michael Schissel, with Arnold & Porter in New York, also said the case belongs in Japan, where the facts originated and the witnesses are. Schissel said the Japanese government declared the nuclear meltdown was not a natural disaster, so TepCo could be held liable for damages.

But Edwards, of the firm Edwards Kirby in North Carolina, said it’s important to look at the situation “from altitude,” to see things from the sailors’ perspective.

“These are American sailors, American employees serving their country, who were sent on American ships on international waters at the request of the Japanese government … their ally, which owns the majority of stock in defendant TepCo,” Edwards said.

“Being on an American ship in international waters puts you on American soil.”

Edwards said that since the vast majority of the sailor-plaintiffs were stationed in San Diego and GE designed the nuclear reactors at its San Jose headquarters, the case belongs in California.

“They want the case in Japan because they know it goes away; that’s clearly their strategy,” Edwards said.

He added: “This case screams federal jurisdiction; this case screams United States of America. The underlying concept of this whole thing is fundamental and basic notions of fairness being met.”

Edwards’ co-counsel Charles Bonner, with Bonner & Bonner in Sausalito, said if the case were transferred to Japan, where GE could be dismissed as a defendant, GE could “continue building their defective reactors with impunity.”

Bonner added that California has a vested interest in applying its own laws, including strict liability for defective products, and punitive damages to deter companies from selling defective products. He pointed out that one-sixth of the U.S. Navy is based in San Diego, with 69 Navy ships in San Diego Harbor.

“(Japan’s) compensation act has not been applied to their own citizens, only businesses. Why should we speculate their compensation act will help our sailors? It will not,” Bonner said.

Stone countered that Bonner was “simply wrong” in claiming that the Japanese nuclear damage compensation act had not benefited individual Japanese citizens. He said it is the conduct of defendants TepCo and GE – which occurred in Japan – and not the plaintiffs’ place of residence that should determine jurisdiction over the case.

The sailors’ attorneys indicated Thursday if Sammartino dismissed the class action, they would seek leave to amend their first case, Cooper v. TepCo, to add additional plaintiffs who were dismissed from the second case, Bartel v. TepCo. The defendants are expected to oppose the motion.

Stone and Schissel did not immediately return phone and email requests for comment Friday.

January 6, 2018 Posted by | Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Tepco, GE Escape $5B Fukushima Radiation Suit

By Keith Goldberg
Law360, New York (January 5, 2018, 7:17 PM EST) —
A California federal judge on Friday dumped a $5 billion suit against Tokyo Electric Power Co. and General Electric Co. over alleged radiation risks to U.S. Navy members responding to the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster, saying her court lacked jurisdiction over the sailors’ claims.
More than 150 California-based U.S. Navy first responders claimed that Tepco knew there were problems at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station as soon as five hours after a March 11, 2011, earthquake and tsunami but didn’t warn the U.S. responders who…
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January 6, 2018 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The importance of net neutrality – theme for January 18

KEEP NET NEUTRALITY – Voice your opinion @ [John Oliver] 11/30/17

R.I.P. The Internet

January 6, 2018 Posted by | Christina's themes | Leave a comment

Dominion hires former S.C. Gov. Hodges as lobbyist as SCANA nuclear buyout heats up

January 05, 2018 07:09 PM

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January 6, 2018 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment