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Thursday, September 19, 2013

Fukushima Daiichi - A Cautionary Prepper's Tale

Fukushima Daiichi - A Cautionary Prepper's Tale

September 11, 2013
By: Andre Leger

Aerial View of Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station - NHK

As an Disaster/Emergency Preparedness blogger and Prepper, the #FukushimaCrisis has been on the short list for "Game Changers" on my #SHTF List.  The effects of leaking Radioactive Waste Water into the Pacific Ocean should have more than most worried about the severe potential of an ongoing disaster that it is.

We have been covering the Disaster at Fukushima since the beginning and mitigation of the Radioactive materials is becoming increasingly unlikely.  Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) is either covering up the actual severity of the situation -or- completely unable to handle the situtation.

Worst case scenarios are everywhere.  Better to follow the facts
  • Leaking Tanks and Melting Cores at the facility are not being contained
  • Reported leaking of 300-400 tonnes of Radioactive Waste Water have been flowing in to the Pacific for almost 1000 days
  • Cesium 134 & Cesium 137 (Cesium Brothers), RadioIodine, and Strontium 90 are all components of the Waste Water (not to mention the other noxious chemicals associated with Nuclear Clean-Up)
  • Plans to contain Leaking from main reactor site by "Freezing the Ground" are shaky at best, possibly leading to a "quicksand" like effect on the facility as a whole...
  • Japanese Government is taking over containment and mitigation and are not much more proficient or forthcoming as TEPCO
  • The Pacific Food Chain is already affected and will be for many more years, most of which depending when the leaking actually is ceded
  • Nuclear Risk to area and worldwide are being reported lower than actual, 3X Chernobyl at this point and getting worse
  • Mass Market media is leery of reporting the Real threat to the United States for whatever reason
  • FDA is not addressing Radioactive Contamination issue

A Brief History:
  • The earthquake and tsunami in March 2011 knocked out cooling systems to reactors at the Fukushima plant, three of which melted down.
  • Water is now being pumped in to cool the reactors, but storing the resultant large quantities of radioactive water has proved a challenge for TEPCO.
  • The process creates an extra 400 tonnes of contaminated water every day, which must be stored in temporary tanks.
  • But leaks of contaminated water, both from the tanks, pipes and through damaged structures, have been a persistent problem. Groundwater from the hills surrounding the plant also flows down and into the radioactive areas

[The Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster  was a series of equipment failures, nuclear meltdowns and releases of radioactive materials at the Fukushima I Nuclear Power Plant, following the Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami on 11 March 2011.
It is the largest nuclear disaster since the Chernobyl disaster of 1986 and the second disaster (along with Chernobyl) to measure Level 7 on the International Nuclear Event Scale.

The plant comprised six separate boiling water reactors originally designed by General Electric (GE) and maintained by the Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO). At the time of the earthquake, reactor 4 had been de-fueled and reactors 5 and 6 were in cold shutdown for planned maintenance. Immediately after the earthquake, the remaining reactors 1–3 shut down automatically and emergency generators came online to power electronics and coolant systems. However, the tsunami following the earthquake quickly flooded the low-lying rooms in which the emergency generators were housed. The flooded generators failed, cutting power to the critical pumps that must continuously circulate coolant water through a Generation II reactor for several days to keep it from melting down after shut down. After the pumps stopped, the reactors overheated due to the normal high radioactive decay heat produced in the first few days after nuclear reactor shutdown (smaller amounts of this heat normally continue to be released for years, but are not enough to cause fuel melting).

As workers struggled to cool and shut down the reactors, several hydrogen-air chemical explosions occurred. It is estimated that the hot zirconium fuel cladding-water reaction in each reactor produced 800 to 1000 kilograms of hydrogen gas, which was vented out of the reactor pressure vessel, and mixed with the ambient air, eventually reaching explosive concentration limits in units 1 and 3, and due to piping connections between units 3 and 4, unit 4 also filled with hydrogen, with the hydrogen-air explosions occurring at the top of each unit, that is in their upper secondary containment building.

The negative health effects of the Fukushima nuclear disaster include a moderately increased risk of thyroid cancer (a comparatively rare form of cancer) for girls from the most contaminated area, and a slightly increased risk of other cancers for infants from the most contaminated area. One study found that more than a third (36%) of children in Fukushima Prefecture have abnormal growths in their thyroid glands which are not attributed to the effects of radiation. In particular, a WHO report found that there is a 70% higher risk of developing thyroid cancer for girls exposed as infants in the most contaminated area, a 7% higher risk of leukemia in males exposed as infants in the most contaminated area, a 6% higher risk of breast cancer in females exposed as infants in the most contaminated area, but only a 4% higher risk, overall, of developing solid cancers for females. As of August 2013, there have been more than 40 children newly diagnosed with thyroid cancer and other cancers in Fukushima prefecture, but these cancers are not attributed to radiation from Fukushima, as similar patterns occur in other areas of Japan.

There were no deaths caused by radiation exposure, while approximately 18,500 people died due to the earthquake and tsunami. Future cancer deaths from accumulated radiation exposures in the population living near Fukushima are predicted by some agencies to be extremely low to none. However, other researchers are less optimistic, with predictions that 25 times as many people in Fukushima area will develop thyroid cancer after the disaster compared to before: Professor Shinzo Kimura of Dokkyo Medical University in Japan, had been collecting radiation contamination data and studied the radiation exposure risks from Chernobyl. He was the first scientist on the ground in Fukushima after the disaster, keen to establish data independent of TEPCO and the government.

TEPCO admitted for the first time on October 12, 2012 that it had failed to take stronger measures to prevent disasters for fear of inviting lawsuits or protests against its nuclear plants. 
There are no clear plans for decommissioning the plant, but there are estimates it will take at least thirty or forty years.

On July 22, 2013, more than two years after the incident, it was revealed that the plant is leaking radioactive water into the Pacific Ocean, something long suspected by local fishermen and independent investigators.TEPCO had previously denied that this was happening and the current situation has prompted Japanese Prime Minister Shinzō Abe to order the government to step in. On August 20, in a further incident, it was announced that 300 tonnes (300 long tons; 330 short tons) of heavily contaminated water had leaked from a storage tank. The water was radioactive enough to be hazardous to nearby staff, and the leak was assessed as Level 3 on the International Nuclear Event Scale. On August 26, the government took charge of emergency measures to prevent further radioactive water leaks, reflecting their lack of confidence in TEPCO...]http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fukushima_Daiichi_nuclear_disaster

Present Day:
 
Radiation levels around tanks storing contaminated water at Japan's crippled Fukushima nuclear plant have risen by a fifth to a new high, officials say.

Ground readings near one set of tanks stood at 2,200 millisieverts (mSv) on September 4, the plant operator and Japan's nuclear authority said.

Saturday's reading was 1,800 mSv.

Last month, plant operator Tokyo Electric Power Company (Tepco) said it had found highly contaminated water leaking from a storage tank.
Other leaks have also been reported, prompting the government on Tuesday to pledge 47bn yen ($473m, £304m) in funding to tackle the problem.
The spike in radiation levels found on Tuesday was in the same area where the 1,800 mSv level was detected on Saturday, a spokeswoman from #Tepco told Bloomberg.


The readings are thought to be high enough to provide a lethal radiation dose to someone standing near contaminated areas without protective gear within hours.

Under the government plan announced on 
September 4, 2013, a wall of frozen earth will be created around the reactors using pipes filled with coolant. This aims to prevent groundwater coming into contact with contaminated water being used to cool fuel rods.

"We are aware of concerns over the issue of contaminated water leakages at Fukushima, the government will take charge and will definitely resolve this problem," he said.
Tokyo is a candidate as a host nation for the Olympics, and the decision is expected in days."

What can YOU do:
  • Know where your food is produced/harvested
  • Younger people should be of particular concern for conatminants
  • Filter drinking water with a heavy metal filtration system or know the location of bottled water source
  • Purchase and Use a Radiation Detection device such as Geiger Counter or RADstickers
  • Monitor the effects of contamination through trusted purveyors of Seafood and Pacific originated food stuffs, And... 
  • RadiationAt the Very Least, Your Days of Eating Pacific Ocean Fish Are Over
    Opinion by Gary Stamper
  • MSNBC article in April of 2012 reported that seals and polar bears were found to have “external maladies” that consisted of fur loss and open sores, obvious signs of radiation burns from the Fukushima meltdown, despite the conclusions of the article.
    • Since the summer of 2011, U.S. scientists have observed several dozen living and dead Pacific Ocean marine mammals with a strangely similar condition of skin sores and hair loss. These animals may be suffering from ‘beta burns,’ which are caused by significant external exposure to ‘beta emitters’ such as radiostrontiums, which were released in copious quantities to the Pacific Ocean at Fukushima Daiichi in 2011
    • Almost a third more US West Coast newborns may face thyroid problems after Fukushima nuclear disaster


above: German Scientists have calculated the dispersion of Cs-137 in the Pacific Ocean

Related:

The Great Ice Wall - MP Blog 4.8.2013

Agency: Fukushima workers urgently trying “to prevent groundwater from leaking into ocean” — Levels of nuclear waste surge next to sea — #Strontium90 shatters previous record by over 5 Billion Bq/m3 — Now 25 million times EPA limit (after Typhoon Vongfong)

Nuclear Update: “Enormous orange flash” seen around suspected Nuclear site as mysterious explosion rocks one of world’s largest cities | ENENews/NY Times 

“Travesty”: Japan publisher very concerned Gundersen would not be allowed into country — Gov’t does not want to hear what real independent experts are saying about Fukushima (AUDIO)


Japan Professor: 1,000 years from now contaminated water from Fukushima may still be entering Pacific Ocean — It’s necessary to keep monitoring during that time


Gundersen: Medical doctors ordered to not tell patients their problems are related to Fukushima radiation — Of course they’re going to say nobody died… the data records are distorted — People of Japan are essentially a scientific experiment, but nobody’s reporting results (AUDIO)


Reuters: Radiation levels spike at Fukushima nuclear plant — 15 times higher than on Sunday at same location — Tepco still wants to dump in Pacific


Japan Nuclear Expert: “I’m totally fed up” — Fukushima fisherman: “Radioactive water is getting more and more serious”


NHK Special: Farmer in Fukushima no-go zone finds “certain abnormalities in his herd” — Cancer Professor: “I wonder what discoloration is… study could be relevant to humans” (VIDEO)


Japan Times: Prime Minister telling “outright lie”? — Experts: Nuclear material “has kept gushing into Pacific far beyond man-made bay” — Fukushima fisherman: “He must be kidding… he doesn’t know what’s going”


Tokyo Professor: Recent tests show “new radioactive materials” flowing nonstop into ocean from Fukushima reactor buildings


NHK: Contaminated water problem “getting more serious” at Fukushima — Gov’t task force on nuclear waste flowing into Pacific Ocean


AFP: Fears that Fukushima melted reactor cores have “eaten through” concrete of containment vessels — Tepco plan claims fuel to be removed at same time as 2020 Olympics in Tokyo


Japan Nuclear Expert: I was “flabbergasted” by Olympic speech — Fukushima reactors are actually destroyed and constantly leaking in ocean — Contamination dumping into sea — PM: “It’s contained in 0.3 km² area of harbor”


Reports: New site with high levels of radiation at Fukushima — Urgent problem at plant says IAEA; Experts to examine massive water build-up — Found ‘immediately after’ Olympic speech claiming it’s under control — Can’t dump groundwater in sea?



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