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‘Dirty bomb’: Mystery Russian ‘superweapon’ kills five

An on-board reactor would give an engine almost unlimited range. In the case of a guided cruise missile, it could circle the world before receiving orders to attack from out of the blue.

But they’re not easy to control.

They operate at extremely high temperatures. They use explosive fuels, such as liquid hydrogen. And any accident could have devastating, long-lasting effects.

 

August 12, 2019 Posted by | incidents, Reference, Russia, weapons and war | 1 Comment

Russia says small nuclear reactor blew up in deadly accident

August 12, 2019 Posted by | incidents, Russia, Small Modular Nuclear Reactors | 1 Comment

Swim marathon: Tokyo 2020, FINA watching water quality, temperature

In 2011, Professor Kodama of Tokyo University  had found Tokyo’s Bay water to be  radiation contaminated. 8 years later I doubt that the only danger in that water is high levels of e-coli bacteria…
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August 11, 2019
Athletes voiced concerns over water quality and temperature at a marathon swimming test event for Tokyo 2020 Sunday, as officials vowed to monitor the situation closely in the run-up to the games.
“That was the warmest race I’ve ever done,” said three-time Olympic medallist Oussama Mellouli from Tunisia after completing the 5km men’s competition.
“It felt good for the first 2km then I got super overheated,” added the 35-year-old, who won gold in the 10km swim at the London Olympics in 2012.
The event started at 7am with the air temperature already over 30 degrees as the Japanese capital swelters through a deadly heatwave.
“The water temperature was high so I’m a bit concerned about that,” said Yumi Kida from Japan, who said she guzzled iced water before the race in an effort to reduce her body heat.
International Swimming Federation (FINA) rules state that athletes may not race when the water temperature exceeds 31 degrees and FINA’s executive director Cornel Marculescu said competitors’ wellbeing was top priority.
Marculescu said an external body would be set up in conjunction with Tokyo 2020 organisers to monitor both water quality and temperature in the run-up to the games and the results could affect the timing of the marathon swimming event.
“Based on this information, we will decide the time the event will start. Could be 5am, could be 5:30am, can be 6am, can be 6:30am — depends on the water temperature,” he told reporters.
“Working with a specialised company like we are going to do here in Tokyo, we will have the right information to take the right decision.”
Hot weather issues have become the biggest headache for Tokyo organisers, who have already moved up the start time of several events including the marathon in a bid to mitigate the effects of the blistering heat of the Japanese summer.
– ‘A little stinky’ –
In terms of water quality, David Gerrard from FINA’s medical committee said readings from the test event would not be ready for 48 hours but previous results gave cause for optimism.
“What we have had are readings fom the last month, daily readings that have given us very clear indications of the water quality, which has been good,” he said.
Organisers are desperate to avoid the embarrassment of the Rio Olympics in 2016 when the pool used for diving events turned an unsettling shade of green overnight.
Brazilian officials also had to scramble to clean up the bay used for sailing and windsurfing that was plagued by sewer bacteria and filthy with rubbish.
In October 2017, Tokyo 2020 organisers were left red-faced after tests revealed levels of e-coli bacteria more than 20 times higher than international standards, sparking doubts about the venue’s safety.
At the time, the organising committee blamed prolonged summer rain that had brought pollutants from offshore for the high readings between late July and early September.
A year later, organisers said that tests using underwater “screens” to filter the water had successfully reduced bacteria levels at the venue, which will also host triathlon.
They tested single and triple-layer screens — some 20 metres (66 feet) long and three metres wide — and found that both were effective in bringing bacteria down to safe levels although the triple screen, expected to be employed during games time, worked best.
Japanese swimmer Kida said the water was “a little stinky, and the clarity was not very good so I really want to improve the quality.”
The event will be held in Odaiba, a Tokyo bay area with a backdrop of the city and the “Rainbow Bridge” that links the area to downtown.
On clear days Mount Fuji is visible and the area is also noteworthy for a replica Statue of Liberty.

August 12, 2019 Posted by | fukushima 2019 | , , , | Leave a comment

Tepco toughens stance toward nuclear disaster damages settlement

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Plaintiffs in a lawsuit seeking damages compensation over the 2011 Fukushima nuclear power plant meltdown crisis walk toward the Tokyo District Court on Aug. 2.
Aug 11, 2019
FUKUSHIMA – Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc. has become significantly more reluctant since last year to accept a government body’s recommendations for a settlement of damages claims by people affected by the Fukushima nuclear disaster, government officials and lawyers involved said.
The company’s tougher stance in negotiating out-of-court compensation settlements could force those affected to resort to lengthy and costly legal actions.
 
Lawyers representing residents of Fukushima say some have given up on taking their claims to court due to legal costs, after Tepco rejected the body’s settlement proposals.
Following the Fukushima nuclear disaster, which was triggered by the March 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake and tsunami, the government established the dispute resolution body to broker settlements between Tepco and people seeking compensation.
Three nuclear reactors at Tepco’s Fukushima No. 1 plant suffered meltdowns, which led to the contamination of wide areas of Fukushima Prefecture.
According to the government, more than 31,000 people who evacuated from their homes in Fukushima are still living outside the prefecture.
In the process, called alternative dispute resolution, the body proposes settlement terms based on government guidelines regarding the types of damages and costs eligible for compensation.
Tepco said in 2014 it would respect the body’s reconciliation proposals even though the company is under no legal obligation to do so.
In 2018, the body terminated 49 settlement proposals due to Tepco’s refusal to accept them, including nine cases brought by employees of the power company and their relatives, its officials said. The cases involved at least 19,000 residents near the plant, they said.
The number was a significant increase from 61 in the four years through 2017. All of those during the four-year period were cases in which Tepco employees or their family members sought compensation. In many of the rejected cases, Tepco refused to pay damages because the company saw the recommended compensation as unjustifiable under the government guidelines, the officials said.
The officials said the body decided to discontinue the resolution processes partly to encourage residents to consider legal action.
One of the lawyers representing Fukushima residents said, “Tepco may be concerned that uniformly compensating residents according to settlement proposals would lead to a revision of the government guidelines to its disadvantage.”

August 12, 2019 Posted by | fukushima 2019 | , , | Leave a comment

Contaminated water tanks in Fukushima will be full in 3 years

All part of the now massive media PR campaign to prepare the public opinion for the dumping of that accumulated radioactive water into the Pacific ocean. Let’s face it, for them to dump it into the sea is the quickest, cheapest conveniency. And they’d love to have it out of the way before the 2020 Olympics venue.
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August 9, 2019
By the summer of 2022, storage tanks holding processed water on the grounds of the crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant will become completely full, according to Tokyo Electric Power Co.
That marks the first timetable the utility has set on when capacity will be reached in the tanks holding the water processed to remove most radioactive substances.
Analysts said setting a deadline for the tank capacity allows TEPCO to push the central government and other entities to take action on the volume of contaminated water that continues to accumulate at a rate of about 150 tons a day.
TEPCO officials are expected to present their estimates at an Aug. 9 meeting of a subcommittee under the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry looking into dealing with the contaminated water.
The triple meltdown at the Fukushima No. 1 plant after the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake and tsunami produced piles of melted nuclear fuel in three reactors at the plant.
The melted fuel continues to be cooled, but that results in the build-up of water contaminated with high levels of radioactive substances.
Groundwater has also seeped into the reactor buildings, increasing the high volume of contaminated water.
While most of the radioactive substances are being removed through processing equipment, tritium remains in the processed water, which must be stored.
Large storage tanks have been constructed on the grounds of the Fukushima No. 1 plant, which currently store about 1.05 million tons of processed water.
TEPCO continues to install new storage tanks, but space limitations mean that by the end of 2020, a maximum storage capacity of about 1.34 million tons will be reached.
Utility officials claim that even if groundwater volume was decreased, the storage tanks would become full of processed water by about summer 2022.
One option being considered by the central government is to dilute the processed water and gradually release the water into the ocean. But local fishermen are fiercely opposed on the grounds the negative publicity generated by that action would hurt their future sales.
Sources said the industry ministry was planning to present another option of storing the processed water for a long period outside the Fukushima plant site. Fukushima fishermen had requested that such an option be considered to avoid negative publicity that would hurt their livelihoods.
However, TEPCO officials have expressed doubts about whether that option will ever get off the table. For one thing, finding a community that would be willing to host such a storage site would be extremely difficult. TEPCO officials also said problems would arise in transporting the processed water from the Fukushima site to a new location, including the possibility that radiation could be released during the transportation process.
After the ministry subcommittee considers how to deal with the processed water, the central government will decide on a basic plan after coordinating with other relevant parties, including the local governments involved.

August 12, 2019 Posted by | fukushima 2019 | , , | Leave a comment

Fukushima students speak on 2011 disaster in Berlin

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August 09, 2019
BERLIN (Jiji Press) — Nine high school students from Fukushima Prefecture gave speeches in Berlin on Thursday about their experiences of the March 2011 triple disaster that hit hard the prefecture.
Addressing German high school students, the nine from Fukushima recounted in English what they experienced in the disaster, in which a huge earthquake and deadly tsunami struck, followed by a meltdown accident at Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc.’s Fukushima No. 1 power plant.
An audience of several hundred listened attentively.
Kae Togawa, 15, from Namie, most of which is still in a no-entry zone due to high radiation levels, talked about her experience of being bullied because of the accident, with tears in her eyes.
“I was told such bad words many times [as] ‘You are an evacuee, you get compensation. You bring in radiation,’” Togawa said.
Sumire Kuge, 16, from Koriyama, said: “I can’t forget many foreigners who I watched on the news. They aren’t Hollywood stars or [a] president. But they helped our country.”
“I want to be like them. One thing to learn is if I have courage, I can help someone,” Kuge added. She received big applause.
The speeches were given as part of a high school student exchange project between Fukushima and Germany led by the Japanese nonprofit organization Earth Walkers. Under the project, students from Fukushima will stay in Germany for two to three weeks and learn about renewable energy and other topics.

August 12, 2019 Posted by | fukushima 2019 | , , | Leave a comment

Fukushima Daiichi’s radioactive water to run out of tanks in 2022

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Storage tanks at Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant hold more than 1 million tons of tainted water.
Fukushima’s contaminated water to run out of tanks in 2022
With Olympics approaching, Tokyo hesitant to release into ocean
August 09, 2019
TOKYO — Tanks containing runoff from the devastated Fukushima nuclear plant are likely reach capacity as early as the summer of 2022, a new forecast shows, putting pressure on Japan’s government to dispose of the wastewater.
The Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant has leaked water laced with radioactive isotopes since its reactors suffered meltdowns after a crippling March 2011 tsunami.
Various solutions have been proposed, but one that a panel of experts called in 2016 the fastest and least costly — releasing water into the ocean — is opposed by locals who fear it will hurt the image of the region’s seafood.
The 960 tanks located at the site now hold roughly 1.15 million tons of water. Plant administrator Tokyo Electric Power Co. Holdings, or Tepco, expects to secure enough tanks to hold 1.37 million tons by the end of 2020.
An average 170 tons of contaminated water was produced each day during fiscal 2018, mostly as the result of groundwater flowing into the ruined plant.
Tepco, which counts a government-backed fund as its top shareholder following a 2012 bailout, aims to reduce the volume to 150 per day next year. Even at that reduced level, the tanks would reach full capacity in either the summer or fall of 2022, Tepco estimates.
This marks the first projection that storage at the plant will reach its limit. The findings will be presented at an expert panel meeting on Friday.
Tepco installed equipment to pump out and decontaminate the water. But the treated water still contains tritium, a radioactive hydrogen isotope that also occurs in minute amounts in nature.
The utility has been criticized for its handling of the plant after the disaster, with its so-called ice wall, a costly, complex technique of freezing the soil to keep the leaks from reaching the ocean, questioned over its effectiveness.
A panel commissioned by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry considered a plan to dilute and release the water into the ocean. Toyoshi Fuketa, chairman of Japan’s Nuclear Regulation Authority, described the approach “most logical.”
But with the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo approaching, the government is worried about a potential blow to its international reputation by releasing the water into the sea. It appears to be dragging its feet on a decision.
In his final pitch to secure the Games six years ago, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe had told the International Olympic Committee that the situation at Fukushima was “under control.”
A number of Japan’s trading partners banned imports of seafood from Fukushima and other areas after the nuclear disaster. These restrictions added to the economic pain for the region’s fisheries industry, which was recovering from the physical damage of the tsunami.
 
 
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In this April 14, 2017 file photo, tanks storing radioactive contaminated water are seen at the crippled Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant in Okuma, Fukushima Prefecture.
Tanks storing radioactive water in Fukushima to be full by 2022: TEPCO
August 9, 2019
TOKYO (Kyodo) — It is estimated tanks storing water contaminated with low-toxicity radioactive tritium at the crippled Fukushima nuclear plant will be full by the summer of 2022, the plant operator said Friday.
At a meeting of a government panel on the same day, Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc. was unsupportive of the idea to replace the existing tanks with larger vessels as a long-term storage solution for water that was contaminated when cooling the plant’s cores.
Local fishermen and residents support the storage solution, preferring it to any plan that would see the water released into the sea out of fear over the potential impact on fish stocks.
A nuclear expert from the International Atomic Energy Agency, however, said in 2018 that a controlled discharge of such contaminated water “is something which is applied in many nuclear facilities, so it is not something that is new.”
The treated water remains tainted with the low toxicity tritium as a result of cooling the plant’s reactors, which suffered core meltdowns following the 2011 earthquake-tsunami disaster. The water is regarded as relatively harmless to humans.
TEPCO also said storing the tanks outside the premises would present difficulties with transportation and getting approval from local governments. Moreover, the tanks would remain even when the decommissioning work was completed and would take up land required for storing debris, the company added.
Toxic water produced by cooling debris and other processes is purified using the Advanced Liquid Processing System, said to be capable of removing almost all radioactive materials except tritium.
As of late July, around 1.1 million tons of tritium-contaminated water was stored on the premises of the plant, according to TEPCO. The utility plans to raise storage capacity to 1.37 million tons by the end of 2020, but plans beyond that have yet to be decided.
The tanks currently fill at the rate of around 150 tons of water per day.
The government panel has looked into five options to dispose of the tainted water including discharging it into the sea and vaporization.
“It is unreasonable to store (the water) forever. The (storage) period and conditions should be established,” a member of the panel said.
Another member argued that the treated water should not be discharged into the ocean at any time soon, saying it is “illogical to sacrifice the livelihood of local residents to proceed with the decommissioning work.”
At the plant, an area of up to around 80,000 square meters, enough to accommodate tanks containing 380,000 tons of treated water, is required to store melted nuclear fuel and other debris that will be extracted in the future, according to TEPCO.
TEPCO also said at the panel meeting it is possible to expand the Fukushima plant by acquiring neighboring land used for interim storage of soil from decontamination work, but that the company hopes to carry out the decommissioning within the area of the existing premises.

August 12, 2019 Posted by | fukushima 2019 | , , | Leave a comment

South Korea Weary of Japan’s Plans to Dump Fukushima Daiichi Radioactive Water into the Pacific

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Storage tanks for radioactive water are seen at Tokyo Electric Power Co’s (TEPCO) tsunami-crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant in Okuma town, Fukushima prefecture, Japan, in this picture taken on Feb. 18.
Greenpeace warns Korea of Japan’s radioactive water discharge
August 8, 2019
An international environment organization has said that Japan plans to discharge radioactive waste into the Pacific Ocean in the near future and Korea will fall particularly vulnerable.
 
Greenpeace Korea, the global NGO’s branch in Seoul, reposted on Facebook, Wednesday, a column by its nuclear specialist Shaun Burnie published in The Economist, saying Japan is planning to discharge more than 1 billion liters of contaminated water stored at the Fukushima nuclear plant since the massive earthquake and nuclear disaster of 2011.
 
Burnie wrote in his article that the Japanese government has decided recently to take the “cheapest and fastest” way to dispose wastewater, which is to discharge it into the Pacific Ocean.
 
The scientist added neighboring countries will be exposed to radiation as a result and Korea, in particular, will suffer the most from it.
 
He claimed that if 1 million tons of radioactive water is discharged into the ocean, it will take 17 years and 770 million tons of water to dilute it, adding it is impossible not to discharge it without contaminating the ocean, and countries in the Pacific region will be exposed to radiation.
Burnie continued that Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings has tried to find ways to handle the contaminated water for the last eight years but failed. He pointed out that the Shinzo Abe administration never speaks about the risks of radioactive pollutant, and ignores unfavorable reports when they are released.
 
Chang Mari, a climate and energy campaigner at Greenpeace Korea, said the environmental organization has been watching the status of the nuclear plant in Fukushima, which was damaged by a massive earthquake and tsunami in March 2011.
 
“Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry has been conducting technical evaluations to discharge or manage the contaminated water between 2013 and 2016. The affiliated taskforce team dealing with titrated water under the ministry proposed five ways to dispose of the wastewater and it recommended discharging it into the ocean,” Chang told The Korea Times, Thursday.
 
“We have been issuing warnings to the Japanese government of possible consequences that could follow the pollutant discharge, but they all have been disregarded.”
 
The Korean government has been requesting the Japanese government share information on radioactivity levels in Fukushima for years but the latter has refused to do so, according to relevant Korean ministries.
 
“We have been holding meetings with Japan’s Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism every year and we asked them to share data on how Japan has been dealing with contaminated water, but they have kept avoiding answering,” an official at the Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries said.
 
“The radiation levels in the coastal areas here have shown no big changes so far since 2015.”
 
 
Gov’t Says It Will Closely Monitor Fukushima’s Radioactive Wastewater
August 8, 2019
South Korea’s Oceans Ministry said that it is closely watching how Japan will deal with radioactive wastewater from the Fukushima nuclear plant that melted down earlier this decade.
 
Following claims by global environmental watchdog Greenpeace that Japan plans to release more than one million tons of radioactive water into the ocean, a ministry official told KBS on Thursday that the government has been demanding that Tokyo disclose how it plans to deal with the problem. 
 
According to the official, Seoul has in the past demanded Tokyo explain how it plans to deal with the contaminated water, but Tokyo has continuously stonewalled.
 
The ministry has been examining water near South Korea’s shores on a quarterly basis since 2015, and there has been no significant change so far, according to the official.

August 12, 2019 Posted by | fukushima 2019 | , , , | 2 Comments

Japan to resume effort to tackle contaminated water problem at Fukushima

Japanese Government, TEPCO and the Japanese media keep on bringing back this issue, the lack of space on site to keep the accumulating radioactive water, as a mean to force the public’s acceptance for its dumping into the Pacific ocean. The two radionuclide filtering systems are not fully performing, therefore that stored water is only partially decontaminated, and still radionuclides loaded.
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Storage tanks for radioactive water are seen at Tokyo Electric Power Co’s (TEPCO) tsunami-crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant in Okuma town, Fukushima prefecture, Japan February 18, 2019
August 8, 2019
TOKYO (Reuters) – Japan is resuming efforts to disperse a build-up of contaminated water at Tokyo Electric Power’s wrecked Fukushima nuclear plant that is stalling progress on cleaning up the site, the government said on Thursday.
A panel of experts will meet on Friday for the first time in eight months to consider options to get rid of the water, Japan’s government said in briefing documents it released.
The panel will consider strategies such as evaporation of the water and injection deep underground, in addition to a recommendation by Japan’s nuclear regulator to release the treated water into the ocean, a more conventional technique.
Regular meetings of the panel had stopped nearly three months after Tokyo Electric (Tepco) admitted it had not managed to completely remove potentially dangerous radioactive particles from treated water held in tanks.
The admission had been a setback for the company and the government, as the water hampered clean-up of the site where three reactors melted down after an earthquake and tsunami in 2011, the world’s worst nuclear disaster since Chernobyl in 1986.
In 2016, the Japanese government estimated that the total cost of plant dismantling, decontamination of affected areas, and compensation, would be 21.5 trillion yen (£166.6 billion), or about a fifth of the country’s annual budget.
Tokyo won the bid to host the 2020 Summer Olympics around six years ago, with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe declaring that Fukushima was “under control” in his final pitch to the International Olympic Committee.
At nuclear sites around the world, contaminated water is treated to remove all radioactive particles except tritium, a relatively harmless isotope of hydrogen hard to separate from water and released into the environment.
But because of missteps such as last year’s admission that it had not removed everything except tritium from the tanks, Tepco faces difficulties winning the trust of regional fisherman who oppose the water’s release into the ocean.
Some countries, including South Korea, still have restrictions on produce from areas around the Fukushima site.
Tepco has completed replacement of older tanks that had experienced leaks with stronger ones, the government said.
It is expected to run out of tank space by mid-2022, the government added, adding to the urgency to resolve the problem.

August 12, 2019 Posted by | fukushima 2019 | , , | Leave a comment

Japan’s govt urges Fukushima evacuees to return – in drive to promote 2020 Olympics

Fukushima: Despite health threats, the Japanese government urges residents to return. Families who fled nuclear meltdown in Fukushima are being urged to return to their homes ahead of the Tokyo Olympics.
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Families claim the government is speeding up return ahead of Olympics
Aug 4, 2019
Alarming levels of radiation up to 20 times higher than official safety targets have been recorded in areas where locals are being encouraged to go back. We found ghost towns eight years after three reactors went into meltdown at Daiichi power plant 140 miles north east of Tokyo in March 2011. Tokyo 2020 is being hailed as the “Reconstruction Olympics” signalling new hope following the earthquake and tsunami that triggered the disaster and left more than 18,000 people dead. 
Now evacuees are being urged to return as the global spotlight focuses on the recovery of the region. The government has lifted most evacuation orders and all but a handful of hot spots have been declared safe. 
But parents believe their children are in danger, saying officials are downplaying the dangers and safety is compromised in a cynical attempt to convince the world the crisis is over. 
Families have accused the government of speeding up their return to showcase safety standards ahead of the Olympics. 
We found once-vibrant communities now post apocalyptic wastelands like something from a Hollywood movie after the worst nuclear accident since Chernobyl. 
Schools, shopping malls, supermarkets, libraries and petrol stations lie decaying along with thousands of homes. Many are set behind guarded barricades in exclusion areas known officially as “difficult to return to zones”. 
Others lie in areas which the government says are safe to live in but whose few residents – wild boar and monkeys – demonstrate signs of mutation. Along roadsides sit giant black bags containing contaminated soil. 
In Tomioka, five miles from the power plant, a school sports hall is scattered with footballs left when children fled. 
It’s in stark contrast to arenas being built for the £20billion Games. Fukushima is hosting the first event, a softball match on July 22, two days before the opening ceremony. 
The Japanese leg of the torch relay starts on March 26 at a soccer training centre 12 miles south of the crippled plant. The J Village, a base for emergency workers, only fully reopened last month. 
In Okuma our Geiger counter sounded furiously, recording four microsieverts an hour. The government safety target is 0.23 microsieverts per hour. 
It came days after evacuation orders were lifted for parts of the town which had 10,000 residents. The centre remains a no-go zone and just 367 former residents have registered to go back. 
Ayako Oga, 46, who suffered a miscarriage, says: “The Olympics are putting lives in danger. The government is forcing people to leave the public homes they have been in. They are putting a heavy burden on people still suffering mentally and financially.” 
In Namie, which had 21,000 residents, evacuation orders were lifted in 2017. It is said 800 people returned but we found desolation, only traffic lights working. 
The Wild Boar bar last served a drink on disaster day. Owner Sumio Konno, in a group legal action against the government, says his son, who was five, still suffers nosebleeds. “He is sick all the time,” he says. “Every month he needs to go to the doctor.” 
Ryohei Kataoka, of the Citizens Nuclear Information Centre, says: “The government’s insistence in lifting evacuation orders where heightened radiation-related health risks undeniably exist, is a campaign to show that Fukushima is ‘back to normal’ and to try to make Japan and the world forget the accident ever happened.” 

August 12, 2019 Posted by | fukushima 2019 | , , , | Leave a comment

Korea to restrict imports from Japan’s Fukushima

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A protester at an anti-Japan rally stand next to a banner mocking the Japanese Foreign Ministers Taro Kono’s promotional remarks on Fukushima’s food safety
August 4, 2019 By Do Je-hae
 
The Moon Jae-in administration will tighten its import quota on fishery and agricultural products from Fukushima in Japan in response to Tokyo’s decision to remove Korea from its whitelist of Group A countries that receive preferential trade processing.
 
A presidential aide said Sunday that if the Japanese Cabinet’s decision to remove Korea from the list takes effect Aug. 28, South Korea will reduce its quota for imports of seafood from Fukushima, which was affected by a nuclear power plant disaster in 2011.
 
“The Korean government has started to look into controlling the import quota of products from Fukushima,” the aide said asking for anonymity citing the sensitivity of the issue.
 
The new quota would strengthen control of imports of seafood from Fukushima and the surrounding region, which were introduced by Seoul in the wake of the nuclear disaster due to concerns about radioactive contamination.
 
The reinforcing of non-tariff measures in response to Japan’s trade offensive is gaining ground after Deputy Prime Minister and Economy and Finance Minister Hong Nam-ki stressed that the government would impose measures to protect the “people’s safety.”
 
This was seen as targeting Japanese food imports from Fukushima following a massive earthquake and tsunami that destroyed the nuclear power plant there.
 
“Regarding Japan’s latest action, the biggest priority in relation to public safety are the tourism, food and waste sectors. We will announce specific follow-up measures for these after carefully reviewing them,” Hong said.
 
Observers say that using non-tariff measures can be useful for Seoul in gaining international support in the trade row with Japan, given that the World Trade Organization (WTO) took its side regarding the import of seafood from Fukushima in a ruling in April after a three-year battle.
 
The ruling in favor of Korea was a blow to the Japanese government, which exerted all-out efforts amid concerns about the safety of Fukushima fishery products. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe plans to promote that it is safe to eat food from Fukushima at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, by pledging to use the area’s food products at the athletes’ village. This campaign has sparked a call among some Korean lawmakers for a boycott of the Tokyo Games.
 
Other measures being considered by Seoul include removing Japan from its whitelist and tightening controls on exports to Japan. Currently there are 29 countries on Korea’s list of trusted trading partners, including Japan. Seoul is also planning to take Tokyo’s trade restrictions to the WTO.
 
In addition, Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha, and second deputy director of the presidential National Security Office Kim Hyun-chong have hinted at the possibility of repealing a military information-sharing pact with Japan, the General Security of Military Information Agreement (GSOMIA).
 
“We will sternly carry out corresponding measures against the unfair economic retaliation. If Japan attempts to damage our economy, we will also take reciprocal responses and will strengthen them step-by-step,” President Moon Jae-in said in a rare live televised emergency Cabinet meeting over the weekend.

August 12, 2019 Posted by | fukushima 2019 | , | Leave a comment

To August 12 – nuclear news this week

NUCLEAR. This week , the spotlight has been on Russia, as conflicting and ambiguous reports come out, about a Russian rocket test explosion that caused radiation levels to spike in the Arkhangelsk region. The Russian nuclear agency Rosatom finally admitted its involvement. Russia honours as ‘national heroes’ the 5 nuclear scientists who died in this suspected secret testing of a nuclear-powered cruise missile.

CLIMATE. While governments and the older generation in general continue on their merry way with business as usual, young people are ever more concerned about climate change. It’s THE issue at this week ‘s International Congress of Youth Voices, in Puerto Rico.  High school students are organising Youth Climate Strikes.    Why stay in school if our planet will die?

How the viewing public was ‘protected’ from seeing what the Hiroshima and Nagasaki nuclear bombing did to people. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uas1WtocwOo  Hiroshima nuclear bombing, and the birth of the Doomsday Clock.

Another expensive nuclear weapons race about to take off. Putin And Trump are ‘normalising’ the increasing numbers, and the use, of nuclear weapons.

Wildfire cloud study sheds light on the processes of ‘nuclear winter”

Harm to astronauts’ brains from space radiation.

Even the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)  is concerned about radioactive trash management from Small Modular Nuclear Reactors.

JAPAN.

RUSSIA.

Putin’s silence on mysterious radiation accident. Test rocket explosion causes radiation spike in northern Russian city.   Two accidents involving Russia’s military. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vK_WDxjhu0Y  Nuclear fuel carrier “Serebryanka” is still at anchor near Russian military test site.  Naval base is on mysterious lockdown after an accidental missile explosion  Scientists found evidence that Russia covered up – a major nuclear accident in 2017.

Barents Observer report on Russian nuclear reactors in the Arctic. Russia’s planned dangerous expansion into the Arctic with nuclear icebreakers, Rosatom in control, increasing climate change.

KASHMIR. India and Pakistan on Hair-Trigger Nuclear Alert Over Kashmir.  Pakistan on the brink again, as India abolishes self-rule for Kashmir.

ARCTIC. Anxiety over Russian nuclear power plant afloat in Arctic.

MURUROA. Health research on descendants of Pacific nuclear veterans.

NORTH KOREA. It’s realistic to accept North Korea as a nuclear state.

USA.

UKRAINE. Chernobyl ‘sarcophagus” on the verge of collapse.

CHINA. China’s nuclear policy.  China buried nuclear waste in Sudan desert.

UK. Three British nuclear submariners sacked over cocaine use.

THAILAND. Government under pressure with growing opposition to nuclear reactor plan.

AUSTRALIA  Three  Parliamentary Nuclear Inquiries are now underway, with short deadlines for submissions. (You can bet that the nuclear lobby’s well-paid shills have sent theirs in already.) National Radioactive Waste Management Facility Taskforce’s heavy-handed, repressive, approach to community consultation. It’s even more undemocratic than the one in Wales

GERMANY. Tower of German nuclear station demolished. The plant was on line for only 13 months.

August 12, 2019 Posted by | Christina's notes | 1 Comment

Fukushima’s ticking time-bomb, as space is running out for radioactive water storage

IN THREE YEARS, FUKUSHIMA COULD OVERFLOW WITH RADIOACTIVE WATER,    https://futurism.com/the-byte/fukushima-overflow-radioactive-water    AUGUST 9TH 19__DAN ROBITZSKI_

Ticking Clock

The effort to safely decommission Japan’s Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant just got hit by a looming deadline.

In about three years, the plant will run out of space for the massive quantities of treated but still-radioactive water that officials have been storing there, according to The Associated Press. While a government panel came up with a few possible courses of action, the most feasible one at the moment is to simply dump the water into the Pacific — a bleak sign for nuclear disasters in the future.

Maximum Capacity

At the moment, Fukushima has over 1 million tons of water stored in almost 1,000 on-site tanks, the AP reports. Plans are in place to build enough to store nearly 1.4 million more tons, but that even those will reach capacity by mid-2022.

Local fishers and residents of the area say that dumping the water would devastate the area’s fishing and agriculture industry, per the AP. Other options considered by the panel include vaporizing the radioactive water or injecting it deep underground.

“When we talk about Fukushima’s reconstruction, the question is if we should prioritize the decommissioning at the expense of Fukushima people’s lives,” University of Tokyo professor of disaster social science Naoya Sekiya told the AP. “The issue is not just about science.”

August 12, 2019 Posted by | Fukushima continuing | Leave a comment

Putin’s silence on mysterious radiation accident

Russia nuclear leak: Mysterious footage of hazmat officials escalates radiation panic https://www.express.co.uk/news/world/1164125/Russia-nuclear-leak-radiation-Putin-iodine-hazmat

CHILLING footage from Russia has intensified fears of a nuclear radiation accident after ambulances were spotted lined with protective chemical sheets and hospitals workers were seen wearing hazmat suits.

By OLI SMITH, Sun, Aug 11, 2019  Russian President Vladimir Putin has remained silent, amid growing speculation that a nuclear missile accident has caused a dangerous radiation leak at a naval base. The Kremlin have confirmed that a “rocket engine explosion” at the Archangelsk base in northern Russia killed five people and injured three. Last night, Russia’s nuclear energy agency Rostam admitted that they had been involved in the aftermath of the incident, raising concern of a radiation leak.

Rostam added that the explosion took place during the testing of an “isotope power source”.

The official said five of its employees had died as a result of the accident and three more were being treated for burns.

However, the extent of the incident and threat of radiation  has not been disclosed, amid growing global concern.

The Archangelsk naval base has been placed under emergency lockdown for a month, with the nearby White Sea also closed to commercial shipping.

sudden radiation spike detected in the region following the explosion prompted the initial speculation that the incident was related to a nuclear missile test.

The radiation level was recorded as 20 times higher than the normal level in the nearby city of Severodvinsk.

This has been reinforced by chilling footage filmed in the aftermath of the incident.

One video showed hospital workers wearing hazmat suits while they loaded the injured into an ambulance. Another terrifying video revealed a security escort of ambulances transporting the injured to Moscow.

In this footage, one of the ambulance is clearly coated in a chemical protection film.

A defence ministry source said that the worker’s clothes had been burned as soon as they were hospitalised with suspected radiation. Experts have linked the incident to the testing of the new nuclear-powered cruise missile Burevestnik mentioned during a speech by Vladimir Putin last year.

Local people have reportedly been urged to take precautions against radiation, with children from local kindergartens taken indoors after the blast.

There has also been a rush to buy iodine in Russia’s far north.

Russian expert Dr Mark Galeotti said the incident was “clearly a bigger issue than the Russians are letting on”.

He told the BBC: “Despite what the Kremlin have said, there must have been some sort of radiation leak – and they want people to not just stay out of harm’s way, but also don’t want people coming to the site with Geiger Counters.”

August 12, 2019 Posted by | incidents, Russia, secrets,lies and civil liberties | Leave a comment

India and Pakistan on Hair-Trigger Nuclear Alert Over Kashmir

Hair-Trigger Nuclear Alert Over Kashmir, Common DreamsIndia and Pakistan, where people starve in the streets, waste billions on military spending because of the Kashmir dispute. Now some of India’s extreme Hindu nationalists warn they want to reabsorb Pakistan, Bangladesh, and even Sri Lanka into Mother India.  by Eric Margolis  11 Aug 19

Two of the world’s most important powers, India and Pakistan, are locked into an extremely dangerous confrontation over the bitterly disputed Himalayan mountain state of Kashmir. Both are nuclear armed.

Kashmir has been a flashpoint since Imperial Britain divided India in 1947. India and Pakistan have fought numerous wars and conflicts over majority Muslim Kashmir. China controls a big chunk of northern Kashmir known as Aksai Chin.

In 1949, the UN mandated a referendum to determine if Kashmiris wanted to join Pakistan or India. Not surprisingly, India refused to hold the vote. But there are some Kashmiris who want an independent state, though a majority seek to join Pakistan……

What makes this confrontation so dangerous is that both sides have important tactical and nuclear forces arrayed against one another. These are mostly short/medium-ranged nuclear tipped missiles, and air-delivered nuclear bombs. Strategic nuclear weapons back up these tactical forces. A nuclear exchange, even a limited one, could kill millions, pollute much of Asia’s ground water, and spread radioactive dust around the globe – including to North America. ….https://www.commondreams.org/views/2019/08/11/hair-trigger-nuclear-alert-over-kashmir

August 12, 2019 Posted by | India, Pakistan, politics international, weapons and war | Leave a comment