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Container containing radioactive waste collapses, Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant, storage method issues come to light

March 20, 2022
 A series of radioactive waste containers stored outdoors at TEPCO’s Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant were toppled and tilted by an earthquake late at night on March 16. Similar damage occurred during the Fukushima earthquake in February of last year, highlighting once again the challenges of storage methods. TEPCO is continuing to take stopgap measures until the waste is transferred to an indoor storage facility, but the Nuclear Regulation Authority is ready to request that more aggressive measures be taken.

Container containing used protective clothing that was toppled by the earthquake. Radiation levels were very low and had no impact on the surrounding environment (courtesy of TEPCO).

Four units damaged, contents outside

 As of January 19, there were a total of eight 1 meter square containers known to have toppled over. Four of them were damaged and their contents were exposed. All of them contained low-dose used protective clothing. Several other containers in two other groups of containers covered with sheets also toppled over.

 Seventy-seven containers were tilted by the earthquake last February, and a total of 12 units toppled over at two locations. Some of the containers were four-tiered, and the shaking of the earthquake broke the connecting fittings, etc. Although the containers were re-stacked two or three-tiered and the bottom foundations were reinforced, the damage could not be prevented this time either.

 In March of last year, one corroded waste container leaked a high dose of radioactive material onto the ground, which flowed into the port through a drainage channel. In July of the same year, rainwater that had entered a container for contaminated soil overflowed from inside the container.

 A total of 85,500 outdoor waste containers are now in use. TEPCO inspected a total of 5,338 containers with a certain amount of surface radiation, and found that a total of 646 containers had corrosion or damage. Damage was found and emergency repairs were made. The risks associated with emergency evacuation-like waste management after the accident have become apparent.

A three-tiered container that was displaced by the earthquake. At this point, there is no danger of the container toppling over (courtesy of the Nuclear Regulation Authority).

Reduce risk outside the building.

 The Regulatory Commission is becoming increasingly aware of the problem. At a regular meeting on February 2, Chairman Toyoshi Sarada mentioned the option of temporarily storing outdoor waste underground by covering it with soil. He stated that it would be difficult to gain the understanding of the local community, but considering the risk of leakage, it would be undesirable to leave the waste above ground.

 TEPCO has announced a policy to remove all the contents of the containers to the storage facility by FY2028 to eliminate the outdoor storage, but there is no guarantee that an earthquake, typhoon, or other large-scale natural disaster will occur before the work is completed. There is no guarantee that this will not happen. If trouble occurs, it will lead to reputational damage to the local community.

 Shinsuke Yamanaka, a member of the Regulatory Commission who inspected a group of containers at the No. 1 nuclear power plant on March 17, touched on the issue of outdoor waste in an interview after the visit and stressed, “It is important to talk about the inside of the reactor buildings, but right now I want you to prioritize risk reduction outside the buildings. He also expressed his desire to ask TEPCO to come up with concrete measures.

Commissioner Yamanaka checking containers that were dislodged by the earthquake during his visit to the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant on March 17 (courtesy of the Nuclear Regulation Authority).
A group of containers with radioactive waste on the side of Units 5 and 6 at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant in Nov. 2021.

https://kahoku.news/articles/20220319khn000039.html?fbclid=IwAR3ovSE_BA-A7NsNWPht-8P6oAarr27osCSjHno7WDJRp-B6gsHZAQsdxQE

March 20, 2022 Posted by | Fuk 2022 | , , , , | Leave a comment

Radioactive waste from contaminated water treatment, cleanup postponed. What we saw at the storage site of the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant

A facility for storing concentrated liquid waste after evaporation of highly contaminated water. Light blue tanks are lined up behind thick concrete walls. Inside the wall is a maximum of 800 microsieverts per hour at TEPCO’s Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant in Fukushima Prefecture.

March 11, 2022
The contaminated water containing high concentrations of radioactive materials that continues to be generated at TEPCO’s Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant (Okuma and Futaba towns, Fukushima Prefecture) is creating contaminated waste in the process of treatment and storage. On April 2, this paper’s team entered the plant premises and visited the storage site. TEPCO and the government plan to discharge the contaminated water into the ocean in the spring of 2023, but the cleanup of the massive amount of radioactive waste has been postponed. (Kenta Onozawa)


◆Enriched liquid waste “To be honest, there is no concrete plan.
We honestly don’t have a concrete plan for how to dispose of the waste,” said a TEPCO spokesperson with a pained expression on his face in a corner of the vast tank area on the west side of Units 1 through 4. In front of us, a covered shed surrounded by concrete walls. A horizontal light blue tank could be seen through a gap in the wall. The dosimeter he had brought with him read around 0.5 microsieverts per hour in the tank area, but the reading jumped to 4 microsieverts per hour near the hut.
 The contents of the tank, which emitted intense radiation through the 20-centimeter-thick concrete, were “concentrated liquid waste” generated immediately after the accident. It is the precipitate from the process of desalinating highly contaminated water, which contained salt from the tsunami, and reusing it to cool the nuclear reactors.
 The muddy condition makes it difficult to treat, and the high radiation dose makes it inaccessible; when Fukushima Prefecture checked the site in January 2008, the maximum radiation dose inside the wall was 800 microsieverts per hour. This is the annual exposure limit for an average person after spending one hour and 20 minutes at the site.
 There are 200 cubic meters of muddy liquid waste and 9,000 tons of supernatant water. The contaminated water treatment process has stabilized and will not increase any further. TEPCO plans to begin experimental treatment in FY2011, but has not even begun to verify the method.


◆Contaminated plastic in “untouchable” reservoirs
To the north of the shed, there is a clearing that rises up like a ring, where the underground reservoir that caused the contaminated water leak in 2001 is buried.
 At the time, the storage of contaminated water was on a tightrope. TEPCO, under pressure, dug a hole where a tank could not be built directly under the power lines, covered it with a water shield sheet, and filled it with a total of 24,000 tons of contaminated water, which mainly contained radioactive strontium. However, the water leaked underground and could no longer be used.
 Although the contaminated water has been drained out, the plastic materials that were placed in the pond as reinforcement remain heavily contaminated. Standing on the pond, the dosimeter quickly read 3 microsieverts per hour. The spokesperson said in a low voice, “I think we could have removed the contaminated water if we had filled it with purified water, but now that we have filled it with contaminated water, it’s hard to do anything about it.


◆Waste continues to accumulate
 The treated water that is planned to be discharged into the ocean is water that has been purified by a multinuclide removal system (ALPS). The treatment process also generates muddy waste, which is stored in a polyethylene container (1.5 meters in diameter, 1.8 meters high, and about 1 centimeter thick) called an HIC.
 In the storage area on the south side of the site, the top of the HIC was visible inside the concrete wall. Some of the HICs containing high-dose sludge have already exceeded their useful life, and the number of such HICs will reach 87 at the end of FY2010. There are fears that they may break due to deterioration, and they are under pressure to be transferred to new containers. However, it has taken time to set up measures to protect the workers from radiation exposure, and the replacement of the heavily contaminated containers only began on February 22.
 Once the discharge of treated water into the ocean begins, the number of storage tanks, which number approximately 1,000, will gradually decrease. However, there is no plan to eliminate the generation of contaminated water, and the purification process will continue. In the meantime, waste from the treatment process will continue to accumulate, so it is unacceptable to postpone the consideration of a long-term management method.
https://www.tokyo-np.co.jp/article/164886?fbclid=IwAR3Gl8NO1JrwlhjZZdt3dSPjvmgjFUN22ctU96eQF0YstNai6HJsdmgHIWM

March 11, 2022 Posted by | Fuk 2022 | , , , | Leave a comment

Fukushima Takes a Turn for the Worse.

January 10, 2022by Robert Hunziker

Tokyo Electric Power Company-TEPCO- has been attempting to decommission three nuclear meltdowns in reactors No. 1 No. 2, and No. 3 for 11 years now. Over time, impossible issues grow and glow, putting one assertion after another into the anti-nuke coffers.

The problems, issues, enormous danger, and ill timing of deconstruction of a nuclear disaster is always unexpectedly complicated by something new. That’s the nature of nuclear meltdowns, aka: China Syndrome debacles.

As of today, TEPCO is suffering some very serious setbacks that have “impossible to deal with” written all over the issues.

Making all matters nuclear even worse, which applies to the current mess at Fukushima’s highly toxic scenario, Gordon Edwards’ following statement becomes more and more embedded in nuclear lore: “It’s impossible to dispose of nuclear waste.” (Gordon Edwards in The Age of Nuclear Waste From Fukushima to Indian Point)

Disposing of nuclear waste is like “running in place” to complete a marathon. There’s no end in sight.

As a quickie aside from the horrendous details of the current TEPCO debacle, news from Europe brings forth the issue of nuclear power emboldened as somehow suitable to help the EU transition to “cleaner power,” as described by EU sources. France supports the crazed nuke proposal but Germany is holding its nose. According to German Environment Minister Steffi Lemke: “Nuclear energy could lead to environmental disasters and large amounts of nuclear waste. (Source: EU Plans to Label Gas and Nuclear Energy ‘Green’ Prompts Row, BBC News, Jan. 2, 2022) Duh!

Minister Lemke nailed it. And, TEPCO is living proof (barely) of the unthinkable becoming thinkable and disastrous for humanity. Of course, meltdowns are never supposed to happen, but they do.

One meltdown is like thousands of industrial accidents in succession over generations of lifetimes. What a mess to leave for children’s children’s children over several generations. They’ll hate you for this!

In Fukushima’s case, regarding three nuclear power plants that melted all-the-way (China Syndrome), TEPCO still does not know how to handle the enormously radioactive nuclear fuel debris, or corium, sizzling hot radioactive lumps of melted fuel rods and container material in No. 1, No 2 and No.3, They’re not even 100% sure where all of the corium is and whether it’s getting into underground water resources. What a disaster that would be… what if it is already… Never mind.

The newest wrinkle at TEPCO involves the continuous flow of water necessary to keep the destroyed reactors’ hot stuff from exposure to air, thus spreading explosively red-hot radioactivity across the countryside. That constant flow of water is an absolute necessity to prevent an explosion of all explosions, likely emptying the streets of Tokyo in a mass of screaming, kicking, and trampling event to “get out of town” ASAP, commonly known as “mass evacuation.”

The cooling water continuously poured over the creakily dilapidated ruins itself turns radioactive, almost instantaneously, and must be processed via an Advanced Liquid Processing System (ALPS) to remove most radioactive materials (???) housed in a 17-meter (56 feet) tall building on the grounds of the disaster zone.

Here’s the new big danger, as it processes radioactive contaminated water, it flushes out “slurry” of highly concentrated radioactive material that has to go somewhere. But where to put it?

How to handle and dispose of the radioactive slurry from the ALPS is almost, and in fact may be, an impossible quagmire. It’s a big one as the storage containers for the tainted slurry quickly degrade because of the high concentration of radioactive slurry. These storage containers of highly radioactive slurry, in turn, have to be constantly replaced as the radioactivity slurry eats away at the containers’ liners.

Radioactive slurry is muddy and resembles a shampoo in appearance, and it contains highly radioactive Strontium readings that reach tens of millions of Becquerel’s per cubic centimeter. Whereas, according to the EPA, 148 Becquerel’s per cubic meter, not centimeter, is the safe level for human exposure. Thus, tens of millions per cubic centimeter is “off the charts” dangerous! Instant death, as one cubic meter equals one million cubic centimeters. Ahem!

Since March 2013, TEPCO has accumulated 3,373 special vessels that hold these highly toxic radioactive slurry concentrations. But, because the integrity of the vessels deteriorates so quickly, the durability of the containers reaches a limit, meaning the vessels will need replacement by mid-2025.

Making matters ever worse, if that is possible, the NRA has actually accused TEPCO of “underestimating the impact issue of the radioactivity on the containers linings,” claiming TEPCO improperly measured the slurry density when conducting dose evaluations. Whereas, the density level is always highest at the bottom, not the top where TEPCO did the evaluations, thus failing to measure and report the most radioactive of the slurry. Not a small error.

As of June 2021, NRA’s own assessment of the containers concluded that 31 radioactive super hot containers had already reached the end of operating life. And, another 56 would need replacement within the next 2 years.

Transferring slurry is a time-consuming highly dangerous horrific job, which exposes yet a second issue of unacceptable risks of radioactive substances released into the air during transfer of slurry. TEPCO expects to open and close the transfers remotely (no surprise there). But, TEPCO, as of January 2, 2022, has not yet revealed acceptable plans for dealing with the necessary transfer of slurry from weakening, almost deteriorated containers, into fresh, new containers. (Source: TEPCO Slow to Respond to Growing Crisis at Fukushima Plant, The Asahi Shimbun, January 2, 2022)

Meanwhile, additional batches of a massive succession of containers that must be transferred to new containers will be reaching the end of shelf life, shortly.

Another nightmarish problem has surfaced for TEPCO. Yes, another one. In the aftermath of the 2011 blowup, TEPCO stored radioactive water in underground spaces below two buildings near reactor No.4. Bags of a mineral known as zeolite were placed to absorb cesium. Twenty-six tons (52,000 lbs.) of bags are still immersed with radiation readings of 4 Sieverts per hour, enough to kill half of all workers in the immediate vicinity within one hour. The bags need to be removed.

TEPCO intends to robotically start removing the highly radioactive bags, starting in 2023, but does not know where the bags should be stored. Where do you store radioactive bags containing enough radioactive power to kill someone within one hour of exposure?

Additionally (there’s more) the amount of radioactive rubble, soil, and felled trees at the plant site totals 480,000 cubic meters, as of 2021. TEPCO is setting up a special incinerator to dispose of this. Where to dispose of the incinerated waste is unknown. This is one more add-on to the horrors of what to do with radioactive material that stays hot for centuries upon centuries. Where to put it?

Where to put it? Which is the bane of the nuclear power industry. For example, America’s nuke plants are full of huge open pools of water containing tons of spent nuclear fuel rods. If exposed to open air, spent fuel rods erupt into a sizzling zirconium fire followed by massive radiation bursts of the most toxic material known to humanity. It can upend an entire countryside and force evacuation of major cities.

According to the widely recognized nuclear expert Paul Blanch: “Continual storage in spent fuel pools is the most unsafe thing you could do.” (see- Nuclear Fuel Buried 108 Feet from the Sea, March 19, 2021)

It’s not just Fukushima that rattles the nerves of people who understand the high-risk game of nuclear power. America is loaded with nuclear power plants with open pools of water that hold highly radioactive spent fuel rods.

What to do with it?

January 13, 2022 Posted by | Fuk 2022 | , , , , | 2 Comments

Interim storage facility completed by March, no prospects for final disposal

January 3, 2022

At the interim storage facility for the waste from the decontamination of Fukushima Prefecture, about 90% of the planned amount of waste has been delivered, and the Ministry of the Environment has said that it will be mostly completed by March of this year.
On the other hand, there is no prospect for the final disposal of the waste, which is required by law to be done outside Fukushima Prefecture by 2045.

At the interim storage facility being built around the TEPCO’s Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant, about 14 million cubic meters of waste, including soil, plants and trees from decontamination in Fukushima Prefecture, is planned to be brought in.

According to the Ministry of the Environment, 12.45 million cubic meters, or 89% of the planned amount, had been brought in by December 23, and the ministry plans to complete the delivery of the remaining 1.55 million cubic meters by March of this year.

On the other hand, these wastes are required by law to be disposed of outside of Fukushima Prefecture by March 2045, and the Ministry of the Environment has said that it will present options for the structure and area of the final disposal site by fiscal 2024, but there is no prospect for the location or method.

In addition, in order to reduce the amount of final disposal, a demonstration project is underway to recycle soil from the decontamination process for use in public works nationwide, but there has been no significant movement outside of Fukushima Prefecture.

https://www3.nhk.or.jp/lnews/fukushima/20220103/6050016821.html?fbclid=IwAR1yHQBDAjvZoV479cYujfiWDqtWLSTChkmelCAL76fnaWwCbPQ-eH6ktaU

January 4, 2022 Posted by | Fuk 2022 | , , | Leave a comment

Tochigi prefecture: waste below 8,000 becquerels to be mixed with general waste and incinerated

How to incinerate without further radioactive particles dispersion? Incinerators multiple screening filters are never 100% successful…

Workers use heavy machinery to load designated waste onto a truck in Nasushiobara, Tochigi Prefecture.

On April 22, farmers in six cities and towns in Tochigi Prefecture began removing “designated waste” containing radioactive materials generated by the accident at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant of the Tokyo Electric Power Company. The waste will be temporarily consolidated at a waste treatment facility in the city. It has been decided that each of the six cities and towns will tentatively consolidate the waste to reduce the burden on the farmers, but Nasushiobara is the first city to take concrete steps.
 Fifty-three farmers in the city have stored a total of 1,216 tons of waste, and on this day, one farmer took out about 1.5 tons.
 According to the Ministry of the Environment, the removal of radioactive materials from all the farms in the city is expected to be completed by next December. About 20% of the waste with a radioactive content of more than 8,000 becquerels per kilogram will be stored at a waste treatment facility, while the waste below 8,000 becquerels will be mixed with general waste and incinerated.

https://www.tokyo-np.co.jp/article/138338?fbclid=IwAR24yIFvmWjdc57bpVFX_Gs7CqG-2nh5kOoVhEHC1AME_BJk2If_Ps-3AOY

October 27, 2021 Posted by | Fukushima 2021 | , , | Leave a comment

Experts warn against fires from disaster waste after Typhoon Hagibis

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Firefighters try to extinguish a fire that broke out in disaster waste piled up at a temporary garbage collection site in Sukagawa, Fukushima Prefecture, on Oct. 20, 2019. (Photo courtesy of the Sukagawa Municipal
November 18, 2019
TOKYO — Two fires broke out in Fukushima Prefecture at temporary collection sites for disaster waste generated by flooding of houses due to Typhoon Hagibis, which lashed eastern Japan in mid-October, prompting experts to urge caution against similar possible incidents.
In both fires in the northeastern Japan prefecture, it is believed that hazardous material among the disaster waste caught fire. As blazes of a different kind also took place several months after disaster waste was generated in the past, one expert warned, “It is necessary to be on the alert against possible fires even several months after a disaster hit.”
One of the two Fukushima Prefecture fires occurred at a temporary collection site for disaster refuse in the prefectural city of Motomiya on the morning of Oct. 17, five days after Typhoon Hagibis made landfall in parts of eastern Japan. After the fire broke out at a site for collecting household appliances, it consumed a total of approximately 4 square meters.
The Ministry of the Environment issued a warning against similar potential blazes the following day. In spite of this, another fire started in a pile of flammable trash at a temporary waste collection site in the prefectural city of Sukagawa on the evening of Oct. 20.
“There is a possibility that hazardous material left among flammable garbage ignited,” said Toshiaki Yanai, head of the city government’s environment division.
Apart from these common flames, there are fires caused by heat accumulation several months after a disaster. Kazuto Endo, a senior official at the Fukushima branch of the National Institute for Environmental Studies, said, “In areas affected by the Great East Japan Earthquake and tsunamis (in 2011), there were at least 30 fires caused by a buildup of heat.”
In the wake of the 2011 disaster, a total of some 31 million metric tons of disaster waste was generated. As there were not enough land lots for temporarily storing the litter, piles of waste soared high in affected regions. In the hardest-hit prefectures of Fukushima, Iwate and Miyagi, a total of 38 fires occurred due to heat accumulation between May 2011 and June 2013.
According to guidelines compiled by a group of experts including Endo immediately after the 2011 quake disaster and other sources, heat accumulation fires are triggered by the following mechanisms:
— Combustible trash put out in the early period of waste collection generates heat as microbes using oxygen actively move around it.
— When the waste is further piled up, it gets compressed by the weight of the trash and heavy machinery such as shovel loaders operated on mountains of rubbish, preventing the heat from being released outside.
— When the piles of garbage soar more than 5 meters high, the speed of heat generation inside the trash overtakes that of the heat released from the surface of the piles, accelerating heat accumulation.
— When a pile of waste stores heat with temperatures of over 80-90 degrees Celsius, oils contained in plants and trees get oxidized and produce heat.
— The higher the temperatures rise, the faster those oils get oxidized and generate heat, eventually catching fire spontaneously.
The guidelines call for keeping a pile of burnable trash no more than 5 meters high and each mountain of waste no more than 200 square meters as part of measures to prevent heat accumulation blazes. The guidelines also urge authorities to maintain the height of perishable trash such as tatami mats at a maximum of 2 meters and allow it to reach no more than 100 square meters in size.
Endo has patrolled areas affected by Typhoon Hagibis and noted, “Some local bodies that had not previously experienced major flooding damage are leaving disaster waste piling up high.” He has thus given guidance to those municipalities to keep their mountains of rubbish lower.
(Japanese original by Takashi Yamashita, Integrated Digital News Center)

November 19, 2019 Posted by | fukushima 2019 | , , , | Leave a comment

‘Only’ 91 bags of radioactive waste swept into rivers

To try making us believe that only 91 bags were swept into rivers during the typhoon Hagibis floodings, out of  Fukushima prefecture’s 17 million tons,  is just ludicrous, totally unbelievable.
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Nov. 2, 2019
Japan’s Environment Ministry says dozens of bags containing radioactive soil were swept into rivers following a powerful typhoon last month. The dangerous waste was produced as a result of the 2011 nuclear disaster.
The waste has been stockpiled at temporary storage sites in Fukushima and neighboring prefectures.
Officials say they have confirmed that 90 bags in Fukushima and one in Tochigi Prefecture were swept away by Typhoon Hagibis after inspecting all the storage sites.
They say at least 25 of the bags were found empty, meaning that the tainted soil was carried away in floodwaters.
But the officials add that radiation levels around the sites remain unchanged.
They plan to install barriers around the storage sites to prevent further such incidents in addition to looking into what caused the problem.

November 4, 2019 Posted by | fukushima 2019 | , , , | Leave a comment

Fukushima Eight Years Later: Black Sacks and Lonely Children

As usual no mention whatsoever about the incineration of the radioactive waste by the 20 plus incinerators in activity in Fukushima Prefecture….
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Coastal towns near the stricken Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant are filled more with sacks of contaminated soil than with children. There are signs that this may be changing, though, as more areas are opened to returnees and new decontamination facilities come online.
I remember how the newsreader Andō Yūko, who visited Fukushima with me in 2014, got angry every time she saw a row of the 1-meter-high black sacks that hold contaminated topsoil.
“I don’t care how many times they say that it’s safe to return. The sight of these enormous sacks in the area completely puts you off.”
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Bags of collected topsoil interrupt the serenity of the Fukushima landscape.
The sacks contain earth and other contaminated material that has been removed during a decontamination process in which topsoil is sheared off. With nowhere to go, the bags, each holding around 1 metric ton of soil, have been either left on site or piled on top of one another in temporary storage areas and covered with green tarpaulins.
Not all of Fukushima Prefecture has high levels of radiation. In fact, radiation levels across the majority of the prefecture are comparable with the rest of Japan. Nonetheless, an extensive area of Fukushima, particularly communities in the northeast, near Fukushima Daiichi, was decontaminated after the accident to allay public concerns. The process has produced an endless stream of black bags, many of which have been simply left at the decontaminated sites.
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A roadside lined with black sacks.
Many people in Fukushima who I interviewed in the past told me that they disliked the ominous bags. And with no decision having been made on how the contaminated soil should ultimately be disposed of, the removal and bagging of soil only served to further increase their number.
Eight years after the accident, however, one does get the feeling that there are fewer sacks lying around. This is partly due to the construction of a medium-term storage facility, where sacks have now begun to be transported.
A Visit to the “Dark Side”
The new facility is being constructed to safely manage and store contaminated soil while it awaits final disposal. The facility straddles the towns of Ōkuma, home to the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station, and Futaba, in an area of the exclusion zone designated uninhabitable due to its particularly high level of radiation.
I went to see one section of the facility under construction in Ōkuma. We drove past houses where the laundry hasn’t been taken in since 2011 and parking lots filled with rusty cars before arriving at a huge pit surrounded by damlike walls.
What used to be an area of houses and fields is now a gigantic concrete-lined containment area for contaminated soil. At the time of my visit in January 2019, a total of 60,000 cubic meters of soil had already been transported to the facility.
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Truckload after truckload of soil is dumped at the site.
This amount is scheduled to reach 4 million cubic meters in fiscal 2019 (ending in March 2020) and to climb as high as 12.5 million cubic meters in fiscal 2020— enough to fill the Tokyo Dome 10 times over.
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The medium-term storage facility stands on what was once woods and farmland. (January 2019, Ministry of the Environment)
While at first glance work appears to be going smoothly, many issues remain. As the “medium-term” in the facility’s name suggests, no decision has been made on where the collected soil will ultimately end up. Nor has any decision been made on how the area would be returned to its original owners when that ultimate solution is agreed upon. The effects are also beginning to be felt by locals, who speak of the noise and traffic jams caused by the constant stream of dump trucks.
My guide from the Ministry of the Environment said apologetically, “There’s a bright side and a dark side to Fukushima. Today, I’ll be showing you the dark side.”
After finishing our tour of the storage facility, the soles of our shoes were meticulously checked to make sure that they had not been contaminated. It was heartbreaking to think that it would be quite some time before this area saw any of Fukushima’s “bright side.”
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Visitors’ shoes are inspected for radiation before they can leave the site.
To read more:

April 8, 2019 Posted by | fukushima 2019 | , , | Leave a comment

5 Chiba prefecture mayors request radioactive waste storage facility for the 8th time

This is an ongoingly highly toxic and dangerous situation made even more difficult by lies and cover-ups and nuclear industry which owns way too many politicians.
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For the 8th time mayors from five cities in Chiba prefecture requested that the central government deal with high level radioactive waste in their cities: Matsudo, Kashiwa, Nagareyama, Abiko, Inzai.
Since 2011, the waste from the Fukushima disaster has been left in temporary storage locations.
The mayors began formally requesting the central government establish a long term storage facility for this waste in January. At the 8th meeting again requesting this assistance they left empty handed again.
Much of this waste consists of contaminated soil, plant matter and possibly dried sewage sludge or incinerator ash. It was not specified what waste streams would be stored in the requested facility. Much of the contaminated soil has been stored in empty lots, some of these near homes or schools, others in watershed areas.
Parts of Chiba received unexpected levels of contamination. Southerly winds at the time of some of the larger releases from the nuclear meltdowns caused contamination into parts of Chiba and Tokyo. Places hours away from a nuclear power plant can find themselves dealing with high radiation levels and contamination due to bad timing and a change of the wind.

December 27, 2018 Posted by | Japan | , | Leave a comment

France presents vitrification process for Fukushima

Same insane mentality that came up with NPPs and generating nuclear waste wsants vitrification which will melt long before the nuke waste becomes chemically stable. Amazing how self/other destructive some people are and what they’re willing to risk doing to other people and life forms:
23 October 2018
A project to demonstrate the use of innovative radioactive waste vitrification technology, developed in France, at the damaged Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant in Japan has been under way for the past six months.
In-can-vitrification-protoype-(CEA)
An in-can prototype developed at CEA Marcoule
Since 27 April, the French Alternative Energies and Atomic Energy Commission (CEA), Orano and ANADEC have been evaluating the potential of using the “in-can” vitrification process developed by CEA to treat waste from water treatment operations at Fukushima Daiichi. Such wastes from these operations include contaminated sludge and mineral adsorbents. Vitrification is the process for immobilising high-level radioactive waste in glass.
CEA’s Marcoule laboratory developed a compact in-can vitrification process in which the melting pot is disposable and serves as the primary canister for the solidified glass.
The project to demonstrate the use of the technology at Fukushima Daiichi comprises two main parts.
The first is to develop and study durable waste form conditioning matrix formulations. Tests on a laboratory-scale (100 grams), on a bench-scale (1 kilogram) and near-industrial scale (100kg) will be carried out in France at the CEA Marcoule laboratories.
The second part of the project is to conduct feasibility studies for process implementation, operation and maintenance principles and waste disposal. These studies will be led by Orano.
In a joint statement Orano and CEA said that laboratory-scale test and part of the bench-scale tests have already been “performed with success”. Near-industrial scale tests, they said, are under way. The feasibility studies will then be carried out, with the complete results expected to be delivered by the end of March 2019.
For the project, “technical and commercial interfaces” in Japan are being provided by ANADEC. This a joint venture set up in 2014 between Orano and Japanese nuclear power plant maintenance and radioactive material management company ATOX.
Multiple facilities including a multi-nuclide removal facility – the Advanced Liquid Processing System (ALPS) – are used to treat the contaminated water accumulated at Fukushima Daiichi plant. After the concentration of caesium and strontium contained in the contaminated water is reduced, the ALPS system eventually removes most of the radioactive materials except tritium. The treatment of all highly contaminated water which contained strontium, except residual water in the bottom of the storage tanks, was completed in May 2015. This has helped reduce the risks attributed to contaminated water, such as an increase in radiation dose on the premises or contaminated water leaking from the storage tanks. The water from which caesium and strontium have been already reduced will require additional treatment by ALPS for further risk reduction.

October 27, 2018 Posted by | Fukushima 2018 | , , , , | 3 Comments

Fukushima Daiichi’s “treated” liquid waste too radioactive to be dumped into the Pacific ocean

They have lied for all those years years to the people from who they needed the permission before any dumping ( fishermen associations, local government, etc.) that all radionuclides had been filtered out, that it was only tritiated water. We have to wonder what is forcing them suddenly to admit this.

The Associated Press reported from a TEPCO press conference held late last week that treated water TEPCO has been trying to dump in the Pacific ocean is not safe to dump.
“much of the radioactive water stored at the plant isn’t clean enough and needs further treatment if it is to be released into the ocean.”
“TEPCO said Friday that studies found the water still contains other elements, including radioactive iodine, cesium and strontium. It said more than 80 percent of the 900,000 tons of water stored in large, densely packed tanks contains radioactivity exceeding limits for release into the environment.”
There is no transparent system of accountability for this stored water. Reporting of the levels of contamination and what isotopes are in what types of stored water are almost non existent.

Fukushima cooling water too radioactive to release

Tokyo Electric Power Company has admitted that much of the water stored at its Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant had not been treated completely enough for release into the environment.
How to dispose of an ever-increasing amount of radioactive water at the plant is a big issue. The contaminated water is generated daily in the process of cooling the damaged reactors.
Before being stored in tanks at the plant, the water undergoes treatment that is supposed to get rid of all radioactive substances but tritium. Tritium is difficult to remove.
One of the disposal ideas is to release the water still containing tritium into the sea.
But many at a public hearing in August opposed to the plan. Some people pointed that the water in question also contains other radioactive elements.
At a meeting of experts in Tokyo on Monday, the utility officials reported that as of August, there was 890,000 tons of such water at the plant.
They said they suspect that more than 80 percent of the water contained not only tritium but also other radioactive substances, such as iodine and strontium, and that their levels exceeded the limits for release into the environment.
A senior Tokyo Electric official apologized, saying his company was too focused on the issue of tritium and failed to provide a full explanation.

October 3, 2018 Posted by | Fukushima 2018 | , , | Leave a comment

Liquid radioactive waste should not be called “treated” radioactive water

Treated water at Fukushima nuclear plant still radioactive

Sepember 28, 2018
TOKYO (AP) – The operator of Japan’s wrecked Fukushima nuclear plant said Friday that much of the radioactive water stored at the plant isn’t clean enough and needs further treatment if it is to be released into the ocean.
Tokyo Electric Power Co. and the government had said that treatment of the water had removed all radioactive elements except tritium, which experts say is safe in small amounts.
They called it “tritium water,” but it actually wasn’t.
TEPCO said Friday that studies found the water still contains other elements, including radioactive iodine, cesium and strontium. It said more than 80 percent of the 900,000 tons of water stored in large, densely packed tanks contains radioactivity exceeding limits for release into the environment.
TEPCO general manager Junichi Matsumoto said radioactive elements remained, especially earlier in the crisis when plant workers had to deal with large amounts of contaminated water leaking from the wrecked reactors and could not afford time to stop the treatment machines to change filters frequently.
“We had to prioritize processing large amounts of water as quickly as possible to reduce the overall risk,” Matsumoto said.
 
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In this Feb. 23, 2017, file photo, an employee walks past storage tanks for contaminated water at the tsunami-crippled Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant of the Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO) in Okuma town, Fukushima prefecture, Japan. The operator of Japan’s wrecked Fukushima nuclear plant said Friday, Sept. 28, 2018, that much of the radioactive water stored at the plant isn’t clean enough and needs further treatment if it is to be released into the ocean.
 
About 161,000 tons of the treated water has 10 to 100 times the limit for release into the environment, and another 65,200 tons has up to nearly 20,000 times the limit, TEPCO said.
Matsumoto said the plant will treat the water further to ensure contamination levels are reduced to allowable limits.
He was responding to growing public criticism and distrust about the status of the water.
More than 7 ½ years since a massive March 2011 earthquake and tsunami destroyed three reactors at the plant, Japan has yet to reach a consensus on what to do with the radioactive water. Fishermen and residents oppose its release into the ocean. Nuclear experts have recommended the controlled release of the water into the Pacific as the only realistic option.
The release option faced harsh criticism at town meetings in Fukushima and Tokyo in late August, when TEPCO and government officials provided little explanation of the water contamination, which had been reported in local media days earlier.
TEPCO only says it has the capacity to store up to 1.37 million tons of water through 2020 and that it cannot stay at the plant forever.
Some experts say the water can be stored for decades, but others say the tanks take up too much space at the plant and could interfere with ongoing decommissioning work, which could take decades.
 
 
 

Treated water at Fukushima nuclear plant still radioactive: Tepco

They called it “tritium water,” but it actually wasn’t.
About 161,000 tons of the water has 10 to 100 times the limit, and another 65,200 tons has up to nearly 20,000 times the limit.
 
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A Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc. official wearing radioactive protective gear stands in front of Advanced Liquid Processing Systems during a press tour at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant in Okuma, Fukushima Prefecture, on Nov. 12, 2014.
 
Sep 29, 2018
The operator of the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant has said that much of the radioactive water stored at the plant isn’t clean enough and needs further treatment if it is to be released into the ocean.
Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc. and the government had said that treatment of the water had removed all radioactive elements except tritium, which experts say is safe in small amounts.
They called it “tritium water,” but it actually wasn’t.
Tepco said Friday that studies found the water still contains other elements, including radioactive iodine, cesium and strontium. It said more than 80 percent of the 900,000 tons of water stored in large, densely packed tanks contains radioactivity exceeding limits for release into the environment.
Tepco general manager Junichi Matsumoto said radioactive elements remained, especially earlier in the crisis when plant workers had to deal with large amounts of contaminated water leaking from the wrecked reactors and could not afford time to stop the treatment machines to change filters frequently.
“We had to prioritize processing large amounts of water as quickly as possible to reduce the overall risk,” Matsumoto said.
About 161,000 tons of the treated water has 10 to 100 times the limit for release into the environment, and another 65,200 tons has up to nearly 20,000 times the limit, Tepco said.
Matsumoto said the plant will treat the water further to ensure contamination levels are reduced to allowable limits.
He was responding to growing public criticism and distrust about the status of the water.
More than 7½ years since a massive March 2011 earthquake and tsunami destroyed three reactors at the plant, Japan has yet to reach a consensus on what to do with the radioactive water. Fishermen and residents oppose its release into the ocean. Nuclear experts have recommended the controlled release of the water into the Pacific as the only realistic option.
The release option faced harsh criticism at meetings in Fukushima and Tokyo in late August, when Tepco and government officials provided little explanation of the water contamination, which had been reported in local media days earlier.
Tepco only says it has the capacity to store up to 1.37 million tons of water through 2020 and that it cannot stay at the plant forever.
Some experts say the water can be stored for decades, but others say the tanks take up too much space at the plant and could interfere with ongoing decommissioning work that could take decades.

October 3, 2018 Posted by | Fukushima 2018 | , , | Leave a comment

NRA OKs plan to bury radioactive waste from nuke plant decommissioning for 100,000 yrs

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The Fukushima No. 1 Nuclear Power Plant is seen in this file photo taken from a Mainichi Shimbun helicopter on July 17, 2018.
The Nuclear Regulation Authority (NRA) plans to require that highly radioactive waste generated when nuclear reactors are decommissioned be buried underground at least 70 meters deep for about 100,000 years until the waste becomes no longer hazardous.
Moreover, disposal sites for such waste should not be built in areas that could be affected by active faults or volcanoes.
The plan is part of the proposed regulatory standards on disposal sites for radioactive waste from dismantled nuclear reactors, which the NRA approved on Aug. 1. The NRA will hear opinions from power companies operating nuclear plants and other entities before finalizing the regulatory standards.
Low-level radioactive waste generated when reactors are dismantled is graded by three ranks in descending order from L1 to L3.
The proposed regulatory standards cover L1 waste, such as containers for control rods and fuel assemblies.
There have been no regulatory standards for L1 radioactive waste even though a growing number of nuclear reactors are bound to be decommissioned under the regulatory standards for nuclear plants that have been stiffened following the outbreak of the Fukushima nuclear crisis in March 2011.
Under the proposed regulatory standards for L1 waste, electric power companies would be required to build disposal sites on stable ground. Such facilities should not be built near faults at least 5 kilometers in length. Moreover, utilities would be mandated to confirm from records or geological surveys that there has been no volcanic activity over the past 2.6 million years or so near where they plan to build the disposal sites.
Power companies would also be obligated to avoid building disposal sites near oil or mineral deposits because areas with such natural resources may be excavated in the future.
Such radioactive waste must be regularly monitored over a roughly 300- to 400-year period following its disposal to see if the waste contaminates nearby groundwater. The owners of disposal sites would then be banned from digging areas surrounding the facilities without permission from the central government.
The proposed standards also require that additional radiation exposure dosages from disposal sites be limited to 0.3 millisieverts or less a year in accordance with international standards. It is also required to confirm whether radiation doses would be below that limit even if the functions for shielding radiation were partially lost, such as the container holding radioactive waste being broken, by analyzing doses under such scenarios.

August 6, 2018 Posted by | Fukushima 2018 | , , | Leave a comment

Radioactive debris + methane deadly balloon near Soma elementary school

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From Oz Yo January 1, 2018
Haramachi ward, Soma City ~ 50km north of Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant: radioactively contaminated vegetation stored in plastic bags piled up and covered by a tarp. When the organic matter decays it produces methane which has in this case built up inside the well-sealed tarp. There’s an elementary school just beyond this … hopefully no children, or ignorant/reckless adults, will be tempted to ‘experiment’ with this deadly balloon.

 

January 18, 2018 Posted by | Fukushima 2018 | , , | Leave a comment

Disposal of low-level radioactive waste from Fukushima crisis begins

To call that site a storage site is a misnomer. As there will also be incineration and conditioning of radioactive debris there. It would be more accurate to call it a processing and storage facility….. Temporary storage, supposedly for 30 years maximum….
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FUKUSHIMA – Disposal began Friday of low-level radioactive waste generated by the Fukushima nuclear disaster, more than six years after the crisis was triggered by the Great East Japan Earthquake and tsunami of March 11, 2011.
A disposal site in Tomioka, Fukushima Prefecture, accepted the first shipment of the waste, which contains radioactive cesium ranging from 8,000 to 100,000 becquerels per kilogram, and includes rice straw, sludge and ash from waste incineration.
The Environment Ministry is in charge of the country’s nuclear waste disposal, which totaled 200,000 tons from 11 prefectures as of the end of September. The majority of the waste, 170,000 tons, originates from the prefecture hosting the crippled nuclear power plant.
“I would like to ask the central government to move this project forward while taking adequate safety steps in mind,” a Tomioka official said. “Building mutual trust with local residents is also important.”
Under the ministry’s policy, each prefecture’s waste is to be disposed of. However, Fukushima is the only prefecture where disposal has started, whereas other prefectures have met with opposition from local residents.
In Fukushima, it will take six years to complete moving the stored waste to the disposal site, the ministry said.
The government “will continue giving first priority to securing safety and properly carry out the disposal with our best efforts to win local confidence,” Environment Minister Masaharu Nakagawa said at a news conference.
The government proposed in December 2013 that Fukushima Prefecture dispose of the waste at the then-privately owned site. The request was accepted by the prefectural government two years later.
To help alleviate local concerns over the disposal, the government nationalized the site and reinforced it to prevent the entry of rainwater.

November 18, 2017 Posted by | Fukushima 2017 | , , , | Leave a comment