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Sam and the Plant Next Door – growing up by the nuclear power plant

Sam, 11, is always being told not to worry about the nuclear power plant rising next door, but for him there is lots to think about. Hinkley Point C will be Britain’s largest nuclear plant, and it’s only two miles away. Most of his classmates expect to work at the plant but Sam is determined to escape that fate.

His dream is to protect the surrounding marine life he identifies with. Like the fish, he feels unappreciated by the adults. Sam thinks the only way to reach his dream is to leave his friends behind and to go to a private school. But when he’s offered a place, his parents can’t afford the fees. As a last resort, they turn to the power company for funding, which forces Sam to decide what kind of person he wants to be. Drifting between Sam’s daily life and his dreams, a film about holding on and letting go, along the tricky passage from childhood innocence to grown-up life

April 4, 2020 Posted by | Education, UK | Leave a comment

Meet the Climate Science Deniers Who Downplayed COVID-19 Risks

March 23, 2020 Posted by | climate change, Reference, secrets,lies and civil liberties, spinbuster, USA | Leave a comment

Nuclear Power Plants: Tritium is a lot more hazardous than they say

tests for statistical significance have been misused in epidemiological studies on cancers near nuclear facilities. These in the past have often concluded that such effects do not occur or they downplayed any effects which did occur. In fact, copious evidence exists throughout the world – over 60 studies – of raised cancer levels near NPPs.

Most (>75%) of these studies found cancer increases but because they were small, their findings were often dismissed as not statistically significant. In other words, they were chucked in the bin marked “not significant” without further consideration.

Just as people were misled about tobacco smoking in previous decades, perhaps we are being misled about raised cancers near NPPs nowadays.

The Hazards of Tritium, Dr Ian Fairlie, March 13, 2020


Nuclear facilities emit very large amounts of tritium, 3H, the radioactive isotope of hydrogen.  Much evidence from cell/animal studies and radiation biology theory indicates that tritium is more hazardous than gamma rays and most X-rays. However the International Commission on Radiological Protection (ICRP) continues to underestimate tritium’s hazard by recommending  a radiation weighting factor (wR) of unity for tritium’s beta particle emissions.  Tritium’s exceptionally high molecular exchange rate with hydrogen atoms on adjacent molecules makes it extremely mobile in the environment. This plus the fact that the most common form of tritium is water, ie radioactive water, means that, when tritium is emitted from nuclear facilities, it rapidly contaminates all biota in adjacent areas. Tritium binds with organic matter to form organically bound tritium (OBT) with long residence times in tissues and organs making it more radiotoxic than tritiated water (HTO). Epidemiology studies indicate increases in cancers and congenital malformations near nuclear facilities. It is recommended that nuclear operators and scientists should be properly informed about tritium’s hazards; that tritium’s safety factors should be strengthened; and that a hazard scheme for common radionuclides be established. Continue reading

March 19, 2020 Posted by | radiation, Reference, secrets,lies and civil liberties, spinbuster | Leave a comment

Dr Ian Fairlea on Epidemiological Evidence of Cancer Risks

The Hazards of Tritium, , Dr Ian Fairlie, March 13, 2020   “……….Epidemiological Evidence of Risks Because of methodological limitations, epidemiology studies are a blunt tool for discovering whether adverse effects result from radiation exposures. These limitations include:

  • under-ascertainment, …
  • strict data requirements….
  • confounding factors: the true causes of morbidity or mortality can be uncertain due to confounding factors such as socio-economic status and competing causes of death.
  • bias: ……
  • poor signal to noise…..
  • uncertain doses:……
  • wide confidence intervals……
Many epidemiology studies are ecologic studies, that is, quick inexpensive studies which look at health statistics in tables and notate individual data. Their findings are usually regarded as indicative, but not conclusive. If their findings suggest an adverse effect then these should be investigated further by more detailed cohort or case-control studies. The latter match “cases” (i.e. those with an adverse health effect) with randomly-selected similar individuals without an adverse effect, in order to minimise under-ascertainment. However few of these are actually carried out because of their expense and long time-spans. Sometimes they are not carried out for political reasons because findings of increased cancers are not welcome.
A disconcerting finding is that a substantial number of epi studies near NPPs conclude there are no findings of ill health even though positive increases were in fact observed. That is, the researchers were unable to accept the evidence of their own work. It is difficult to comment on this cognitive dissonance (few studies seem to exist on this phenomenon) but it is apparently often due to unacknowledged biases or to group-think re the impossibility for ill-health effects to exist near nuclear facilities. In their conclusions, such authors have discounted their findings using a variety of reasons ………
However there is a serious problem here. If similarly increased health effects had been observed near, say, a lead smelting factory or an asbestos mine, would they be dismissed by referring to these rationales? I rather doubt it. In other words, what is occurring here is that hidden biases in favour of nuclear power are in play. In my view, such conflicts of bias should be declared at the outset just as conflicts of interest are nowadays.

The Abuse of Statistical Significance Tests

Many epi studies of cancer near NPPs have found increased risks but dismissed them as not “statistically significant”. This wording often misleads lay readers into thinking that a reported increase is unimportant or irrelevant. But, in statistics, the adjective “significant” is a specialist word used to convey a narrow meaning, ie that the likelihood of an observation being a fluke is less than 5% (assuming a p = 5% test were used). It does not mean important or relevant.
Also this phrase is usually employed without explaining that the chosen significance level is quite arbitrary. There is no scientific justification for using a 5% level or any other test level: it is merely a matter of convenience. In other words, it is quite possible for results which are “not significant” when a 5% test is applied, could become “significant” when a 10% or other test level were used.
The existence of this practice has historical parallels. In the 1950s, dozens of health studies financed by tobacco companies acted to sow seeds of doubt about the health effects of cigarette smoking for many years. Continue reading

March 19, 2020 Posted by | radiation, Reference, secrets,lies and civil liberties, spinbuster | Leave a comment

“Peaceful” and military nuclear reactors always inextricably linked

Anne McMenamin Nuclear Fuel Cycle Watch Australia, 19 Mar 20,   . I’m referring to the structural links between the commercial and military uses of nuclear reactors, and, to some extent, the way THEY see it – which doesn’t always line up with the technical realities. History shows that the 2 industries have been inextricably linked from the beginning.

“Great efforts have been and still are made to disguise the close connection between nuclear energy for war and for power stations. Two reasons are suggested for this: political convenience in avoiding additional informed protests against nuclear weapon production and industrial convenience in carrying on without public protest what has become a very profitable industry.”
Sir Kelvin Spencer CBE FCGI LLD (HON)
First issue of Medicine and War, in 1985

Similarly, a document from the Los Alamos National Laboratory in August, 1981, states:
“There is no technical demarcation between the military and civilian reactor and there never was one. What has persisted over the decades is just the misconception that such a linkage does not exist.”
“Some Political Issues Related to Future Special Nuclear Fuels Production,”
LA- 8969-MS, UC-16

In 2013, historian Dr David Palmer said,
“The issue is processing uranium for nuclear power that then can be used for defence. You have to understand this in terms of Adelaide; it’s a military, industrial and intelligence complex.”
Palmer was commenting on the notable push for nuclear energy and nuclear submarines coming from numerous academics and business people in Adelaide. He considered the real motive behind the nuclear push is security in energy supply for the military, and hence the need to solve the problem of waste disposal, which is currently discouraging investment in nuclear power. Major military/weapons corporations such as Raytheon, Halliburton subsidiary Kellogg, Brown and Root, Lockheed Martin, Babcock and General Atomics are now a noticeable presence in the SA economy.
Links can be clearly seen, e.g. Heathgate, which owns the Beverley mine, is a wholly owned subsidiary of General Atomics, one of the world’s largest weapons manufacturer/servicer.

March 19, 2020 Posted by | 2 WORLD, Reference, spinbuster, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Japan’s Olympic Games propaganda really tops the lies that cover up the Fukushima nuclear catastrophe

Japan’s Nuclear Cover-up Continues, Nine Years after the Fukushima Disaster, Fairewinds Energy Education, March 10, 2020  by Arnie Gundersen “……. 2020 Olympics

If the 2020 Olympics open in Japan this summer as scheduled, something that may not happened due to the spread of the coronavirus, the pièce de résistance of Japan’s Fukushima coverup will be unfolding in Tokyo.  In 2011, even while the three Fukushima nuclear carcasses were emitting extensive radiation, Japan’s new Prime Minister Noda (he was between the ousted Prime Minister Naoto Kan, who was PM when the Fukushima Meltdowns occurred and today’s Prime Minister Abe), claimed that the three melted down Fukushima reactors were in ‘cold shutdown’, which they were not, in order to lay the groundwork for Japan’s Olympic bid. In order to bid as a host for the 2020 Olympics, Noda claimed “… we can consider the accident contained”.  Fairewinds compared Noda’s ‘cold shutdown’ hypocrisy to former President George Bush crowing about ‘Mission Accomplished’ in Iraq, so that he could gain the support of the American people by calling the war already finished, when it had just begun.

In order for Japan to win its Olympic bid in 2013, two years later, Japan’s next Prime Minister Abe stated that the Fukushima disaster was ‘under control’.  This statement was also a blatant lie that succeeded in winning the bid to hold the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo at the expense of the taxpayers and residents of Japan.  Don’t take Fairewinds word for it!  Read what Japan’s former Prime Minister, Junichiro Koizumi said to Reuters in September 2016. Entitled Abe’s Fukushima ‘under control’ pledge to secure Olympics was a lie: former PMReuters wrote,

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s promise that the crippled Fukushima nuclear plant was “under control” in his successful pitch three years ago for Tokyo to host the 2020 Olympic Games “was a lie”, former premier Junichiro Koizumi said on Wednesday.

Frequent readers of the Fairewinds newsletter will remember last year’s posts entitled Atomic Balm 1 and Atomic Balm 2 in which Fairewinds Energy Education described in detail the path of deception that Japan has used to take the world’s attention off of the lives of its own people, who are still being compromised by the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear tragedy.  The 2020 Olympics puts the media focus onto something else – so that the world continues to believe that nuclear power reactors are still a safe form of generating electricity.

This nine year legacy of lies by the government of Japan, nuclear incentivized governments worldwide, and the atomic industry are a harbinger for the seemingly inevitable approach of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. Hopefully mainstream media covering the summer games will finally see through this glamorous marketing scam and identify the fact that Fukushima Prefecture remains severely radiologically contaminated. Real people, who are citizens of Japan, are seeing their health and that of their families being compromised for generations as they are forced to return to radiologically contaminated areas. Entire families and their communities are facing significant health risks simply to enable corporate profiteering of those investors, energy producers, banks, and government officials associated with the ongoing operation of nuclear power plants in Japan and around the world.

March 12, 2020 Posted by | Japan, spinbuster | 1 Comment

Big Oil Big Soda and plastically polluted Planet Earth

They really sold people on the idea that plastics can be recycled because there’s a fraction of them that are,”..“It’s fraudulent. When you drill down into plastics recycling, you realize it’s a myth.” …… “Recycling delays, rather than avoids, final disposal,” the Science authors write. And most plastics persist for centuries. …….

We are all guinea pigs in this experiment, as plastics accumulate in the food web, appearing in seafood, table salt, and ironically even in bottled water. Many plastics are mixed with a toxic brew of colorants, flame retardants, and plasticizers. 

PLANET PLASTIC, How Big Oil and Big Soda kept a global environmental calamity a secret for decades, Rolling Stone, By TIM DICKINSONMARCH 3, 2020   

Every human on Earth is ingesting nearly 2,000 particles of plastic a week. These tiny pieces enter our unwitting bodies from tap water, food, and even the air, according to an alarming academic study sponsored by the World Wildlife Fund for Nature, dosing us with five grams of plastics, many cut with chemicals linked to cancers, hormone disruption, and developmental delays. Since the paper’s publication last year, Sen. Tom Udall, a plain-spoken New Mexico Democrat with a fondness for white cowboy hats and turquoise bolo ties, has been trumpeting the risk: “We are consuming a credit card’s worth of plastic each week,” Udall says. At events with constituents, he will brandish a Visa from his wallet and declare, “You’re eating this, folks!”

With new legislation, the Break Free From Plastic Pollution Act of 2020, Udall is attempting to marshal Washington into a confrontation with the plastics industry, and to force companies that profit from plastics to take accountability for the waste they create. …….

The battle pits Udall and his allies in Congress against some of the most powerful corporate interests on the planet, including the oil majors and chemical giants that produce the building blocks for our modern plastic world — think Exxon, Dow, and Shell — and consumer giants like Coca-Cola, Nestlé, and Unilever that package their products in the stuff. Big Plastic isn’t a single entity. It’s more like a corporate supergroup: Big Oil meets Big Soda — with a puff of Big Tobacco, responsible for trillions of plastic cigarette butts in the environment every year. And it combines the lobbying and public-relations might of all three………

Massive quantities of this forever material are spilling into the oceans — the equivalent of a dump-truck load every minute. Plastic is also fouling our mountains, our farmland, and spiraling into an unmitigatable environmental disaster. John Hocevar is a marine biologist who leads the Oceans Campaign for Greenpeace, and spearheaded the group’s response to the BP oil spill in the Gulf. Increasingly, his work has centered on plastics. “This is a much bigger problem than ‘just’ an ocean issue, or even a pollution issue,” he says. “We’ve found plastic everywhere we’ve ever looked. It’s in the Arctic and the Antarctic and in the middle of the Pacific. It’s in the Pyrenees and in the Rockies. It’s settling out of the air. It’s raining down on us.”

More than half the plastic now on Earth has been created since 2002, and plastic pollution is on pace to double by 2030. At its root, the global plastics crisis is a product of our addiction to fossil fuels. The private profit and public harm of the oil industry is well understood: Oil is refined and distributed to consumers, who benefit from gasoline’s short, useful lifespan in a combustion engine, leaving behind atmospheric pollution for generations. But this same pattern — and this same tragedy of the commons — is playing out with another gift of the oil-and-gas giants, whose drilling draws up the petroleum precursors for plastics. These are refined in industrial complexes and manufactured into bottles, bags, containers, textiles, and toys for consumers who benefit from their transient use — before throwing them away. Continue reading

March 7, 2020 Posted by | 2 WORLD, environment, Reference, secrets,lies and civil liberties, spinbuster | Leave a comment

Japan won’t back U.N. exhibition unless Fukushima references removed, hibakusha say 

March 5, 2020 Posted by | politics, spinbuster | Leave a comment

Flinders University, South Australia: collusion with nuclear power promotion, Prof Pam Sykes, and the scam of “hormesis”

The Industry Push to Force Nuclear Power in Australia, Part 1 of A Study of the “Report of the inquiry into the prerequisites for nuclear energy in Australia” Australian Parliamentary Committee nuclearhistory, February 29, 2020“………….The most recent nuclear collaboration between Australia and a nuclear power for nuclear purposes commenced in the year 2000. At that time a US Department of Energy Contractor named Bobby Scott, based at Los Alamos and at Lovelace Respiratory Research Laboratory, New Mexico, came to Adelaide carrying contract documents. The documents were to be signed by the US DOE and involved personnel of Flinders University. Bobby Scott is a well known (to people in the field) as a leading advocate for the theory of radiation hormesis. The contract to be signed was the first of a number. From the time of the signing of that contract, Flinders University engaged in very strong advocacy of the expansion of nuclear industry in South Australia. Prof Pam Sykes was flown from Adelaide to Los Almos and undertook training and seminars in Hormesis. The concept that radioactive substances are, in her words, “like vitamins”.

I have fully explained that this unproven theory flies in the face of reality in terms of radiological safety and data from monitoring of dose and disease all over the world, including, contrary to the claims of the school hormesis, the naturally high background radiation regions of Iran and India. In those parts of Iran and India, (the five northern provinces in Iran, and Kerala in India) some cancer rates are among the highest in the world. Further, in those Iranian provinces breast cancer in teenage women is more common than it is even in the West. And so on. There are five types of cancer in northern Iran which have very high rates. In south western Kerala, the rates of female thyroid cancer is very, very high.

Contrary the to statements made by the school of hormesis, headquartered at Los Alamos, USA and Flinders University Adelaide. From 2000 on, Flinders University promoted the idea of radioactive substances such as uranium and its decay products and the fission products as being “like vitamins”, necessary for life. By 2011 the university was promoting the idea that an expansion of the state’s uranium mines would be good for the health of South Australians, because the natural background here is “too low” for good health. Presumably the transport of tons of additional uranium ore by train from the mines to the ports in open railway trucks would result in faint clouds of radionuclide “vitamins” being dispersed over the whole population of the state in precisely the right theoretical dose, taking into account, somehow, automatically, the age, gender and health status of each South Australian. (I didn’t write what Sykes did, so don’t blame me.). In 2011 the US DOE funded Flinders University put its pedal to the metal and flew into the debate, labelling South Australians who disagreed with it’s position in words which were insulting and which labelled us as lunatics, radiophobes and totally ignorant of radiological safety principles, cowardly, and devoid of reason. Read it here:

At least in the piece the University acknowledges that Sykes is funded by American tax dollars paid to the University by a foreign government with a vested interest in obtaining cheap Australian uranium. One of the University’s programs, as explained by Sykes on Channel 7 in 2011 was to deliver healthy male volunteers of all ages radiation doses to their prostate glands to see what happened to those glands. For a fuller accounting of this foreign interference by the USA, using money to induce an Australian university to carry out US policy in terms of the South Australian uranium debate, see my submissions to the SA Royal Commission into the nuclear fuel cycle  here: It’s not pretty, and it was a complete re run of the British/Australian nuclear collaboration of decades earlier (from which this country has not fully recovered). It continues today.
The presumption of nuclear industry and PR program, based as it is on the concepts of the arrogant Dr. Goldman (the last man to deny Chernobyl fallout caused childhood thyroid cancer). Any bullshit will do, just get consent or don’t worry about consent. That’s the line. I’m a doctor, you can’t argue with me. Yes i can sir. You are a liar. I expect Sykes to pop her head up again soon. I’m hoping TEPCO renames the Fukushima break water “The Sykes Health Spa and Resort”. Meanwhile, a bit later on the former SA Premier bobs up and says “Let’s discuss nuclear waste storage, because the northern hemisphere has a big problem with it, and they will pay us plenty to become their global dump. No one, much, lives on Eyre Peninsular, so we can bury the stuff there in tubes made from SA copper, which will last a million years. No worries.   We are working with the Swedes on the this. (I’d rather he’d worked with a pumpkin). We promise, the Premier said, never ever, in a zillion years, or for the life of this government, which ever comes first, to use our nuclear knowledge or nuclear resources for military purposes. Even as he spoke those words, he must have known he was wrong, because the supposed research the US paid for (via experiments the US DOE designed) was already being used by the US Air Force in its negotiations with the State of Nevada. The USAF wanted to fire more DU ammunition on the Fallon Air Firing Range, whereas the State of Nevada wanted less to be fired and more to be cleaned up. No joke, I have the letters, and the DOE publication which promotes it’s new you beaut hormesis technology. Which doesn’t work.
And so that brings me to current time. Hormesis research continues and remains unproven. No-one has solved the very high rates of certain cancers in naturally high radiation areas of Iran and India. And the USAF is still having to clean up its on going messing of the land in Nevada, while no one bothers about the DU littered battlefield of Europe and the Middle East. And the Chair of this nuclear committee, a highly skilled politician which a knowledge of China, reckons I and all I say is not worth while. This argument has been going on for many, many decades. The safety culture of the nuclear authorities is totally lame, pathetic and dangerous. I can imagine, on the basis of the past and on the basis of the changing geo-political future, what the results of Australian collaboration in nuclear energy with other nations will be.……

March 5, 2020 Posted by | AUSTRALIA, spinbuster | Leave a comment

Bill in California to call nuclear power “renewable”!

March 5, 2020 Posted by | politics, spinbuster, USA | Leave a comment

The Olympic torch relay promoting “radiation recovery” – not so popular in Fukushima

In Fukushima, Olympic torch relay faces cool welcome from nuclear evacuees WTVB, 

Sunday, March 01, 2020  by Thomson Reuters By Mari Saito and Kiyoshi Takenaka

FUTABA, Japan (Reuters) – Dressed in protective plastic coveralls and white booties, Yuji Onuma stood in front of the row of derelict buildings that included his house, and sighed as he surveyed his old neighborhood.

On the once-bustling main street, reddish weeds poked out of cracked pavements in front of abandoned shops with caved-in walls and crumbling roofs. Nearby, thousands of black plastic bags filled with irradiated soil were stacked in a former rice field.

“It’s like visiting a graveyard,” he said.

Onuma, 43, was back in his hometown of Futaba to check on his house, less than 4 kilometers from the Fukushima nuclear power plant, which suffered a triple meltdown in 2011 following an earthquake and tsunami, leaking radiation across the region.

The authorities say it will be two more years before evacuees can live here again, an eternity for people who have been in temporary housing for nine years. But given the lingering radiation here, Onuma says he has decided not to move back with his wife and two young sons.

Most of his neighbors have moved on, abandoning their houses and renting smaller apartments in nearby cities or settling elsewhere in Japan.

Given the problems Futaba still faces, many evacuees are chafing over the government’s efforts to showcase the town as a shining example of Fukushima’s reconstruction for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

While there has been speculation that the global spread of the coronavirus that emerged in China last month might force the cancellation of the Olympics, Japanese officials have said they are confident the Games will go ahead.

The Olympic torch relay will take place in Fukushima in late March – although possibly in shortened form as a result of the coronavirus, Olympic organizers say – and will pass through Futaba. In preparation, construction crews have been hard at work repairing streets and decontaminating the center of town.

I wish they wouldn’t hold the relay here,” said Onuma. He pointed to workers repaving the road outside the train station, where the torch runners are likely to pass. “Their number one aim is to show people how much we’ve recovered.”

He said he hoped that the torch relay would also pass through the overgrown and ghostly parts of the town, to convey everything that the 7,100 residents uprooted of Futaba lost as a result of the accident.

“I don’t think people will understand anything by just seeing cleaned-up tracts of land.”


In 2013, when Prime Minister Shinzo Abe was pitching Tokyo as the host of the 2020 Games to International Olympic Committee members, he declared that the situation at the Fukushima nuclear plant was “under control”.

The Games have been billed as the “Reconstruction Olympics” – an opportunity to laud Japan’s massive effort to rebuild the country’s northeastern region, ravaged by the earthquake and tsunami, as well as the meltdowns at the nuclear plant owned by Tokyo Electric Power Co.

After the disaster, the government created a new ministry to handle reconstruction efforts and pledged 32 trillion yen ($286.8 billion) in funding to rebuild affected areas.

Signs of the reconstruction efforts are everywhere near the plant: new roads have been built, apartment blocks for evacuee families have sprouted up, and an imposing tsunami wall now runs along the coastline. An army of workers commutes to the wrecked plant every day to decommission the reactors.

In March, just days before the Olympic relay is scheduled to be held across Fukushima, Japan will partially ease a restriction order for Futaba, the last town that remains off-limits for residents to return.

This means that residents like Onuma will be able to freely come and go from the town without passing through security or changing into protective clothing. Evacuees will still not be able to stay in their homes overnight.

After a few years bouncing between relatives’ homes and temporary apartments, Onuma decided to build a new house in Ibaraki, a nearby prefecture. His two sons are already enrolled in kindergarten and primary school there.

“You feel a sense of despair,” said Onuma. “Our whole life was here and we were just about to start our new life with our children.”

When Onuma was 12, he won a local competition to come up with a catchphrase promoting atomic energy. His words, “Nuclear Energy for a Brighter Future” was painted on an arch that welcomed visitors to Futaba.

After the nuclear meltdowns, the sign was removed against Onuma’s objections.

“It feels like they’re whitewashing the history of this town,” said Onuma, who now installs solar panels for a living.

The organizing committee for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics did not respond to requests for comment from Reuters.


Other residents and community leaders in nearby towns say the Olympics may have actually hindered the region’s recovery.

Yasushi Niitsuma, a 60-year-old restaurant owner in Namie, said the Olympics stalled local reconstruction projects because of surging demand and costs to secure workers and materials ahead of the games in Tokyo.

“We need to wait two years, three years to have a house built because of the lack of craftsmen,” said Niitsuma. “We are being put on the back burner.”

Fukushima’s agriculture and fisheries industries have also been devastated.

“I was astonished by the “under control” comment made in a pitch to win the Olympic Games,” said Takayuki Yanai, who directs a fisheries co-op in Iwaki, 50 kilometers south of the nuclear plant, referring to Abe’s statement.

“People in Fukushima have the impression that reconstruction was used as a bait to win the Olympic Games.”

A government panel recently recommended discharging contaminated water held at the Fukushima plant to the sea, which Yanai expects to further hurt what remains of the area’s fisheries industry……..

Radiation readings in the air taken in February near Futaba’s train station were around 0.28 microsieverts per hour, still approximately eight times the measurement taken on the same day in central Tokyo.

Another area in Futaba had a reading of 4.64 microsieverts per hour on the same day, meaning a person would reach the annual exposure upper limit of 1 millisievert, recommended by the International Commission on Radiological Protection, in just nine days.

Despite the official assurances, it’s hard to miss the signs of devastation and decay around town.

The block where Takahisa Ogawa’s house once stood is now just a row of overgrown lots, littered with concrete debris. A small statue of a stone frog is all that remains of his garden, which is also scattered with wild boar droppings.

He finally demolished his house last year after he failed to convince his wife and two sons to return to live in Futaba.

Ogawa doubts any of his childhood friends and neighbors would ever return to the town.

“I’ve passed the stage where I’m angry and I’m resigned,” he said.

(Reporting by Mari Saito and Kiyoshi Takenaka; Writing by Mari Saito; Editing by Philip McClellan)

March 3, 2020 Posted by | Japan, spinbuster | Leave a comment

No advantage in ‘new’ back-to-the-future nuclear reactors for Australia. Is the real motive military?

It is a spurious argument to say any reactor type will reduce Australia’s power industry high level nuclear waste when we produce zero at the moment.
only a devotee of nuclear power would see any advantage in introducing any type of nuclear reactor to Australia. Unless the real motive for such a reactor is a military motive. If so, the O’Brien Committee and the government need to come clean on that.
The waste from the very first molten salt fuelled and cooled reactor, as we saw in the previous post, continues to cost US taxpayers money 60 years later.
The sub text of the picture admits that nuclear industry cannot keep going in the way that it has done since the days between 1945 and now. The industry would disappear if it did not “modernise”.  
Seeing as there actually no new concepts, why not look again, in desperation, at the rejected designs of the past?

Part 2 of A Study of the “Report of the inquiry into the prerequisites for nuclear energy in Australia” Australian Parliamentary Committee 2020.       The Industry Push to Force Nuclear Power in Australia    nuclearhistory    2 Mar 2020  In progress, first draft, incomplete.

The Parliamentary Committee recommends, in part, the following: Recommendation 2

The Committee recommends that the Australian Government undertake a body of work to progress the understanding of nuclear energy technology by:

  1. Commissioning the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO), or other equivalent expert reviewer, to undertake a technological assessment on nuclear energy reactors to:
    1. produce a list of reactors that are defined under the categories of Generation I, II, III, III+ and IV;
    2. advise on the technological status of Generation III+ and Generation IV reactors including small modular reactors;
    3. advise on the feasibility and suitability of Generation III+ and Generation IV reactors including small modular reactors in the Australian context; and
    4.  formulate a framework to be used by Government to monitor the status of new and emerging nuclear technologies.The first item of the recommendation – for ANTSO to compile of reactors according to each one’s status within the table of Generation – 1 to 4 might be a good idea, for many of the Generation IV reactor designs were first envisaged and trialled in the 1950s and 1960s before being discarded. Whereas, at the present time, and since the time the US Department of Energy sought ways of halting the decline of nuclear power’s percentage contribution to global energy supply in the 1990s. For that is the time that the idea of resurrecting old designs and calling them new and “Generation IV” and re marketing them first arose

The waste from the very first molten salt fuelled and cooled reactor, as we saw in the previous post, continues to cost US taxpayers money 60 years later.

In 2014 the Brookings Institute published an essay by Josh Freed entitled “Back to the Future, Advanced Nuclear Energy and the Battle Against Climate Change”. This essay is available to read at The cover illustration is very interesting.

The titled cover includes the disclosure that the nuclear industry sees a future for previously discarded, old reactor designs. It shows a nuclear reactor sitting below sea level, protected by a combined Dyke / Causeway for levitating vehicles. Huge waves threaten the Dyke, vehicles, reactor and giant Science Woman, who is watching on with skilled impartiality. In the distance, buildings taken straight from the cartoon “The Jetsons” appear. The illustration is also, actually, a reinterpretation of the events which occurred in March 2011 at Fukushima. The sub text of the picture admits that nuclear industry cannot keep going in the way that it has done since the days between 1945 and now. The industry would disappear if it did not “modernise”.

The fission industry is dying as more and more competition arises in the form of alternative technologies in the energy generation technology market. Even Fusion research continues to make inroads toward the goal of successful and economic power generation, but it still a few years off. The 1930s fission patents of Szilard are long in the tooth and actually, in terms of economic energy production has always been a failure. Kick started by governments, the standard designs are trusted by fewer and fewer people, especially throughout Asia. Westinghouse Nuclear, GE Nuclear, Toshiba Nuclear are all bankrupt. British Nuclear Fuels Ltd is broke, Sellafield is broke and a growing cleanup cost liability.

So increasingly, the industry needs a unique selling point, something new and radical, something that solves the old nuclear problems. It needs a product which never fails or spills radioactive materials into the biosphere, it needs a product that will not fail because the grid goes down for a few days, it cannot melt down, catch fire like Windscale, Monju and Fermi 1 did.

Seeing as there actually no new concepts, why not look again, in desperation, at the rejected designs of the past? The essay by Josh Freed (his real name) mentions a company called Transatomic. In contrast to the contents of the Freed article, which claims the old new reactor envisioned by Transatomic run on nuclear waste, Transatomic make no such claim. They state that their proposed reactor would run on liquid uranium fuel. As per the original 50s/60s design. They claim that the Molten salt reactor would create less weight of high level waste.

Because the waste would be continuously removed from the reactor. he corporate website for Transatomic is here: And this, from their web site, is precisely what they promise: Molten salt reactors like Transatomic Power’s are fueled by uranium dissolved in a liquid salt. The fuel is not surrounded by cladding, making it possible to continuously remove the fission products that would otherwise stop the nuclear reaction. The liquid fuel is also much more resistant to structural damage from radiation than solid materials – simply, liquids have very little structure to be damaged. With proper filtration, liquid fuel can remain in a molten salt reactor for decades, allowing us to extract much more of its energy.” end quote. They claim their reactor design produces half the nuclear waste of a comparable conventional light water reactor.

This still does not solve the high level nuclear waste stockpile. It adds to it. Given the competition nuclear power has in the modern world, given that the need for ‘baseload’ energy is now shown to be nonsense, what would 1 or 2 small modular molten salt reactors add to Australia? Would they merely replace coal fire powered generation? SA has not had coal fired electricity for some years now. A combination of solar, wind and storage in SA means SA is a net electricity exporter to the Eastern States. We have back up of gas fired generation which very rarely needed.

Sadly for Transatomic, Green Tech Media state the following at announced the following in 2018:

“Transatomic to Shutter It’s Nuclear Reactor Plans, Open-Source It’s Tecnology.

The startup backed by Peter Thiel won’t be able to build its advanced reactor designs—but it’s making its IP available for others to carry on the work.” Source: Jeff St. John, 25 Sept given above.

This gift to the world by Transatomic occurred at the time in Australia when various people began a bombastic and highly enthused campaign to convince Australians that Molten Salt Reactors, fuelled with either Uranium or Lithium or nuclear waste, were Jesus Mark 2. “We’ll Save Yer, just like we did in the Cold War. Solar and batteries are for whimps. We Can’t have solar and wind power in Australia, its a threat to Queensland Coal. Let’s nuclear instead and all make a quick a buck with IP”.

Funny that. Talk about drumming up business prospects and investment funds, and in 2020, floating a float on the back of sympathetic and one eyed Parliamentary Inquiry!

Double or Nothing?

The promise made by Transatomics is that molten fuel/molten salt reactors made with modern techniques will reduce by roughly half the amount of high level nuclear waste generated per unit of power generated. However, at the current time the amount of high level nuclear waste (ie, fission products -the transmutation products described in Szilard’s 1930s patents) and the release of the gaseous forms of these substances into the atmosphere, generated by Australian electricity generation is ZERO.

So the introduction of Molten Salt Reactor into Australia for electricity production will RAISE the production of high level nuclear waste from this activity by 100%. It won’t half, it won’t double, it will increase by x grams per watt. It is a spurious argument to say any reactor type will reduce Australia’s power industry high level nuclear waste when we produce zero at the moment. And if Australia continues on its non nuclear path, that zero rate of power related high level waste will remain zero forever. So where is the advantage for Australia in introducing power reactors in the civilian sphere?

I am led to believe that it will take between 10 – 20 years for any Australian nuclear power reactor to come on line from the time it is approved. By that stage the competition from other forms of low carbon power production will be much, much more severe than it is now. And today, in my opinion, only a devotee of nuclear power would see any advantage in introducing any type of nuclear reactor to Australia. Unless the real motive for such a reactor is a military motive. If so, the O’Brien Committee and the government needs to come clean on that. Not that they will. Such an admission is likely to be impossible for several reasons. Besides, no nuclear industry is free to fully disclose the corporate production and disposition of “special nuclear materials”.

So, I suppose in the end the Committee recommend ANTSO compile a list of reactor types and nominate the current industry PR terms for each type. For the Generational types (1 through IV) have actually very little to do with the chronological order and date range over which each type first manifest as a prototype. The small World War 2 German reactors, of which there were many, are little known, and the US ALSOS project has not disclosed that much about them. Germany had at least 4 reactor programs, 7 ways of enriching uranium. Japan had an Army fission project, a Navy fission project, an Air Force Fission project. All were formally abandoned, ironically , in July 1945. Germany was able to enrich uranium.

This is ancient history, but the world remains fairly ignorant I think, as to which reactor type is the safest, most economic, most reliable and so on. So far, all I have heard from the nuclear industry is PR manufactured originally by the US Department of Energy which relabelled the various reactor designs originated in the US according to a “Generation Number” which is completely detached from the chronological sequence in which they occurred.

In World War 2 Germany was working on heavy water reactors. Does that mean Hitler’s heavy water reactors were Generation III+ ? Of course not. They were Gen 1. As was the Canadian heavy water reactor of World War 2 which supplemented the US plutonium production at Hansford. If the Candu reactor is Gen III+ I’m Father Christmas. What the US DOE is doing with its naming is using marketing techniques to sell old concepts as new ideas.

Car companies do the same when naming cars. Makers of garbage trucks send salesmen around to Council depots extolling the virtues of the Gen IV 2 ton rubbish truck, complete with compactor, a tilt tray and 8 track stereo sound. And Depot managers get given toy model rubbish trucks they sit on their book cases to show how technically astute they are in the field of garbage.

Same deal here. It’s a no brainer. Yet, start collecting lists from ANSTO Mr. O’Brien. Great idea sir. It’ll keep you off the streets for awhile.

March 3, 2020 Posted by | AUSTRALIA, Reference, spinbuster | Leave a comment

Busting the lies of the Australian Government about “new” nuclear reactors

The core propositions of non-traditional reactor proponents – improved economics, proliferation resistance, safety margins, and waste management – should be reevaluated.

Before construction of non-traditional reactors begins, the economic implications of the back end of these nontraditional fuel cycles must be analyzed in detail; disposal costs may be unpalatable………. reprocessing remains a security liability of dubious economic benefit

Non-traditional” is used to encompass both small modular light water reactors (Generation III+) and Generation IV reactors (including fast reactors, thermal-spectrum molten salt reactors, and high temperature gas reactors)

March 3, 2020 Posted by | politics, Reference, spinbuster, technology | Leave a comment

Nuclear Energy Agency’s “pretend transparency”

February 22, 2020 Posted by | secrets,lies and civil liberties, spinbuster, UK | Leave a comment

Chinese-led nuclear company pretending that Sizewell project is a ‘fait accompli’ – no, it is far from it.

BANNG 1020, The Blackwater Against New Nuclear Group (BANNG) has learned that GNSL, the Chinese-led company seeking to build a mammoth new nuclear power station at Bradwell, is preparing to launch its pre-application public consultation for planning permission later this year.

This will be long before detailed discussions with the nuclear regulators are concluded. There are major issues and challenges still to be confronted. ‘It seems that the Chinese developers are taking a risk in trying to present the public and politicians with an apparent ‘fait accompli’ well before major design
and environmental hurdles have been crossed’ said Prof. Andy Blowers,
Chair of BANNG.

GNSL greeted the announcement that the Generic Design
Assessment (GDA) for Bradwell B had begun Step 4 as a major milestone,
clearing the path for deployment of Chinese nuclear technology in Britain.

That is far from the case. Moving to Step 4 in the GDA is like reaching a
hurdle, not passing a milestone. It is at this stage that all the tricky
issues facing the Bradwell B project must be confronted, including the
cooling system, site suitability, security, coastal defence, impacts on
marine and terrestrial environments and so on.

Step 4 is a long and intensive process between the developer and the independent regulators, the Office for Nuclear Regulation (ONR) and the Environment Agency (EA). It is not expected to be concluded for another two years. A pre-application should follow, not overlap, Step 4 of the GDA.

February 20, 2020 Posted by | politics, spinbuster, UK | Leave a comment