Archive for the ‘Japan’ Tag

Japan Nuclear: Exclusion zone dogs   42 comments

Japan Nuclear: Exclusion zone dogs

12 Months later…

    Image Credit:_Japan Earthquake Animal Rescue and SupportJapan Inside The Zone-CheckpointJapan Inside The Zone-Deserted streets and homes

Okuma, Japan ghost town inside the Zone

 

On the first anniversary of the March 11 Japan earthquake, tsunami and nuclear disaster Japan’s nuclear exclusion zone dogs are dying on the streets of Fukushima’s ghost towns from starvation and hypothermia. Fighting to stay alive in freezing sub-zero temperatures 20-30 pets are now dying on a daily basis. They huddle in ravaged remains of abandoned homes, burying themselves in anything they can find, battling to keep the cold at bay.

Gaunt and starving some are now too weak to move, and can only wait helplessly in desperate hope that rescuers will find them in time.

 

        Radiation WarningN-plant warningRadiation level near Fukushima N-Plant

The fallout from the stricken reactors has turned the 20-kilometre (12-mile) exclusion zone around the Fukushima nuclear plant into a dangerously radio-active no-man’s wasteland, the new “Land Of Wolves”.

         Ghost towns inside the Japan exclusion zonejapan exclusion zone deserted streetsChernobyl ghost town of Pripyat inside the exclusion zone

The eerie silence is absolute when you stand in the centre of the exclusion zone, chillingly reminiscent of Chernobyl’s exclusion zone, of ghost towns such as Pripyat…Come -Walk with Me in the Land of Wolves… There should be people but there are no-one, there should be life and activity but instead there is only a strange silence and the occasional sighting of gaunt livestock roaming the empty streets. Thriving towns that only one year ago were home to 80,000 people are now ghost towns, frozen in time.

One year on, animal carcasses lie spoiling in the exclusion zone. Cows and pigs have starved to death, and there is no-one left to attend to their bones still lying in the pens. Cats and dogs have died from disease their bones bleaching on the empty streets where cows and ostriches roam, and frogs and snakes supply the occasional meal to the lucky few cats who venture between the eerily flashing traffic lights, on the deserted streets of Japan’s nuclear ghost towns.

     (Image Credit:Eiji Kaji/Ymiuri) A feral ostrich,believed to run away near a ostrich farm, is seen at the Tomioka fishing port , no-entry zone near the crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant.  (Image Credit: Arab Times) Evacuation zone around the crippled Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant in Fukushima Prefecture, northeastern Japan. Traffic lights flashing eerily directing traffic that is no more in Japan's N-ghost towns

Bicycles lie where they have fallen seeming simply forgotten by careless owners. Nearby bus stops stand silent and empty waiting for the next busload of people that will never come. In a deserted shopping centre, rows of cars waiting soundlessly for the return of heavily laden food shoppers…but there is no-one there. Everyone is gone. There is only the mournful whispering of the wind eddying through a small local store its shelf stock scattered across the floor, the consequence of the March 11 earthquake.

         Tsunami damaged electrical store inside the zoneDesolate: An empty shopping street in the town of Namie inside the 20km exclusion zoneEarthquake damaged local store lies deserted in the Zone of Exclusion

Local Japanese groups have been very keen to be involved in helping to rescue the animals but with so muchSurvivors: Volunteers have braved the exclusion zone around the crippled Fukushima nuclear plant to rescue hundreds of pets abandoned after the earthquake and tsunami in March last year confusion surrounding the issue re the safety aspect of handling animals in the radiation hot spots, and the unanswered question of how they should be tested for radio-activity, this has not been an easy task.

With the appropriate cleaning and quarantine period, they should be safe to handle and adopt, according to Timothy Mousseau, a professor of biological sciences at the University of South Carolina, who has conducted extensive studies on animals exposed to radiation in the Chernobyl region.

The lucky ones-rescued from the zone by Japan animal rescue groups

Tragically, in the meantime the lost animals of the new Japan exclusion zone are “Dying in the Land of Wolves… “

In Futaba town centre; a sign marking the entrance to the main shopping district. It read, "Nuclear power – the bright future of energy."

 

Surprise!! More Japanese Radiation Leaks at Fukushima Nuclear Plant!!   59 comments

 

Fukushima’s Radio-Active Pacific Marine Life??

 

No 4 reactor building FukuFollowing the 8.5 tons of radioactive water which has already leaked just recently at Japan’s Fukushima Nuclear Plant (originally estimated at just a few gallons…yes…well…TEPCO would say that…) when a pipe became detached at reactor Unit 4 and caused a temporary suspension of cooling operations at a spent-fuel pool – (a collapse of its spent fuel cooling pool could cause a worse disaster than the three reactor meltdowns), a further leak at a water reprocessing unit released enough beta rays to cause radiation sickness. TEPCO said no one was injured and after the bolts on a tank were tightened the leak stopped …

<p>This handout picture, taken by Tokyo Electric Power Co (TEPCO) shows radioactive water on the floor inside the building of a water treatment facility at TEPCO's Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant.</p>

Hmm….well of course it did…nothing to worry about then…

But there have been at least 30 other locations within the N-Plant where radio-active leaks have occurred since late January!!

Naturally the official report is that no signs of radioactive water from the leaks have been detected leaking into the ocean surrounding the stricken reactor, but as a precaution problem areas have had sandbag walls built around them…

Well that’s alright then! Everything’s nicely under control…no problem at all…just be VERY careful about what you go fishing for in the Pacific Ocean!! After all…who knows what “hot stuff” you might find lurking down there in the now, decidedly radio-active depths!!

Daiichi Crisis-Worst Disaster since Chernobyl

Threat to Canadian Fish Consumers from Japanese Radiation ?

In the aftermath of the Fukushima Daiichi crisis, the world’s worst nuclear accident since Chernobyl in 1986, the Canadian government wasted no time reassuring the resident population that they would be safe and sound and there was no danger to their health from Fukushima fallout.

After all there was a nice big ocean for all that escaping Japanese N-plant science-121711-001-617x416radiation to fall into, where it would all be safely watered down and therefore be thoroughly harmless and benign, not in the least bit dangerous.

Nothing to worry about…nothing at all…

Not too surprisingly and contrary to claims by the Canadian government anti-nuclear groups highlight the fact that the government has not exactly drawn attention to the radiation risks from Fukushima, in fact quite the opposite, and neither is it doing much to keep an eye on them either.

“We suspect we’re going to see more cancers, decreased fetal viability, decreased fertility, increased metabolic defects — and we expect them to be generational,” ~Dewar, the executive director of Physicians for Global Survival, a Canadian anti-nuclear group.

CONTAMINATION OF FISH IN THE PACIFIC OCEAN

Given that the largest source of the world’s fish is in the Pacific Ocean, and if these fish are contaminated by radiation and it’s notably serious consequences for millions of marine life consumers, it is surely a reckless disregard of public health and safety that there has been next to nothing done in the way of oceanic sea life testing in the Pacific.

“Fukushima caused history’s biggest-ever release of radiation into the ocean — 10 to 100 times more than the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear catastrophe.” ~oceanographer Ken Buesseler, a senior scientist at the non-profit Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution in Woods Hole, Massachusetts, October 2011

“It’s completely untrue to say this level of radiation is safe or harmless,” said Gordon Edwards, president of the Canadian Coalition for Nuclear Responsibility. “The reassurances have been completely irresponsible. To say there are no health concerns flies in the face of all scientific evidence. There is no safe level of radiation. They should be making every effort to monitor food.”

Fukushima Daiichi N-Power Station, Japan

 

TESTING AND RESULT REPORTING

But not to worry, even if nobody else is bothering, it would appear that Japan is reassuringly busy thoroughly testing and analysing fish for radiation and is even going so far as to actually report the results in the public arena. It is just rather unfortunate that it saw fit to then go on to sell radiation contaminated food to the Japanese public, who understandably responded with a barrage of criticism.

CFIA stopped doing the tests by CIFA in Having decided, in their great wisdom, June last year, that there was absolutely no need to continue testing, CIFA have agreed to the testing, this year and next, of Pacific salmon and tuna that return to B.C. fishing grounds, but that is all, and this is largely because of the risk of their possible close proximity to Japan.

EVIDENCE THAT THE IMPACTS OF THE DISASTER ON THE PACIFIC OCEAN ARE WORSE THAN EXPECTED.

60 to 80 per cent of Japanese fishing catches each month have consistently tested positive for radioactive Caesium by the Japanese Fisheries Agency. With a half-life of 30 years the most common configuration of radioactive Caesium is a very long-lived radionuclide capable of long term environmental poisoning, topped off with the added bonus of its cancer increasing factor.

According to The Canadian Food Inspection Agency, “The majority of exported fish to Canada are caught much farther from the coast of Japan, and the Japanese testing has shown that these fish have not been contaminated with high levels of radionuclides.”

Japan has announced that in April 2012 it will reduce its current limit for radiation in food from 500 Becquerel’s per kilogram to the new limit of 100 Becquerel’s per kilogram. In contrast Canada’s limit is set at 1,000 Becquerel’s per kilogram. Presumably Canadians have a much higher tolerance to the Caesium radionuclide and don’t suffer the effects the same as everybody else…

BUT !!!

In November 2011 of the 1,100 tested Japanese catches one in five have already managed to exceed Japan’s new up and coming reduced lower limit.

Giant radio-active eels in Chernobyl waters....

This included:

  •   18 % of cod,
  •   21 % of eel,
  •   22 % of sole
  •   33 % of seaweed

Fish catches also exceeded the current Japanese limit for radioactive food contamination- 500 Becquerel’s per kilogram stand at approximately 2.7%, a 1% increase from October.

April 2011 food contamination levels climbed to 373 Becquerel’s per kilogram. Although by November the contamination level had reduced it was still up from the 78 Becquerel’s per kilogram average for October.

Not the greatest of results then.

STUDY OF EFFECTS ON MARINE LIFE

There are hardly any studies into how Fukushima affected marine life.

Of the ones that do one of those studies found that fish and crustaceans caught in the vicinity of Fukushima in late March had:

  •   10,000 times more than so-called safe levels of radiation
  •   Macroalgae had 19,000 times the safe level

Fukushima Nuclear Plant

The results of these studies look even worse when it is taken into account the statistics do not include the later dumping of before 11,000 tonnes into the Pacific in April by TEPCO, nor does it include further hundreds more tonnes of radioactive water released that has also leaked.

 

October studies indicated Caesium levels in the Pacific had:

  • Shown a shock increase of 45 million times above levels began.

July studies showed: Daiichi N-Plant

  • Caesium levels ceased to decline.
  • Levels persistently at 10,000 times higher than before the Daiichi crisis.

The most likely reason for this are:

  •   Contaminated groundwater still leaking radiation from the Daiichi plant
  •   The possibility of “biomagnification.”
    •   where radiation concentrations are disposed to intensifying the farther up the food chain the species happen to be.

This conclusion seems to be supported by data from the Japanese fisheries. Far from declining, contamination levels in some species did not reduce at all or at best actually rose last autumn. This applied also to Japanese exports to Canada, and included species such as:

  •   Skipjack
  •   Tuna
  •   Cod
  •   Sole
  •   Eel

 

CAESIUM AND SPECIES

MOST

AFFECTED

Some Caesium was found in 16 of 22 species in November, the last full month for which data were available. Caesium was especially prevalent in certain of the species:

  •   73 % of mackerel tested
  •   91 % of the halibut
  •   92 % of the sardines
  •   93 % of the tuna and eel
  •   94 % of the cod and anchovies
  •   100 % of the carp, seaweed, shark and monkfish

image

Some of the fish were caught in Japanese coastal waters. Other catches were made hundreds of kilometres away in the open ocean.

OCEAN DEBRIS

In mid-December, a year earlier than predicted by scientists and authorities, debris the tsunami swept into the sea has reportedly begun washing on shore along the West Coast.

Exactly what impact on the Pacific the debris will have remains to be seen. The most likely scenario is its joining with the existing garbage floating in the “Great Pacific Garbage Patch” of the North Pacific Gyre.

The impact of the debris on the Pacific marine life still has a large question mark hanging over it.

Discrimination against Fukushima’s “Nuclear Refugees”   20 comments

Fukushima Residents Suffer Discrimination At Refugee Shelters

Japanese residents who fled the vicinity of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant are being rejected by shelters and evacuation centres for fear they may be radioactive and contaminate others. These displaced people-”nuclear refugees” had to leave their homes, their farms, their animals, because of the nuclear crisis at the Fukushima Daiichi plant number 1 now will require an official certificate proving they are not contaminated in order to have shelters accept them, as they are expected to accommodate all the homeless.

Displaced Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Refugees

Radiation Fears and Distrust Push Thousands From Homes

Many are already traumatized by the tsunami that swept away entire towns in northern Japan, leaving more than 15,000 dead or missing. They tell tales of gruelling journeys, of post-disaster shortages, of scrounging for gasoline, and arriving with only the clothes on their backs.

They are driven not just by suspicion of the government but also by a deep fear of radiation, in a nation where the word conjures images of the atomic devastation at Hiroshima and Nagasaki. As they flee, they enter a life in limbo, camped out on gym floors with hundreds of others, uncertain when or if they will ever be able to return to their homes.

 japanese-child-screened-radioactivity-fukushimaScreening_for_radioactivityScanning Nuclear Refugees_Fukushima Radiation

Each shelter set-up to accommodate the displaced “nuclear refugees” around Fukushima Prefecture, where the plants are, unlike the areas further North ravaged by the tsunami, is equipped with radiation detection equipment at its entrance and serves as an entry checkpoint for people. These are staffed with health officials in plastic body suits and masks who scan new arrivals with Geiger counters to check for radiation.

Scanning For Radiation At A Temporary Scanning Centre For Residents Living In Fukushima Prefecture, Japan

Scanning for Radiation_Fukushima sheltersjapan-radiation-dog-eg_temp scan centre for residents nr Fuk plantScanning for Radiation_Fukushima shelters

Japanese experts have stated that Fukushima evacuees are not a threat to others. Kosuke Yamagishi of the medical department of the prefecture of Fukushima stated that ordinary people from the area are not dangerous unless they are employees of the Daiichi plant.

fukushima fear

Ichiro Yamaguchi, head of the Testing Station in Yamagata also confirmed regular evacuees are registering only low-levels of radiation. But the people are fearful, and it is this fear that is leading to discrimination against Fukushima residents.

 

An eight-year old child who lived 20 kms. from the nuclear site was refused entry into a Fukushima hospital and their appointment at the hospital had been cancelled as she had no non-radioactivity certification; her shocked father told Japan’s Mainichi newspaper.

However, officials at evacuation centres are sticking to their guns:

Rad_check_point‘All persons residing within a radius of 30 km around the plant must provide a certificate; If they do not, they must submit to an on-site detection. This is so that other evacuees feel safe.’

Tens of thousands have been forced to leave an area of a ​​20-km radius around the Fukushima Daiichi plant or being confined to their homes in an are of 10 kms further. “How can you stay at home if you have to go out to get drinking water?” asked Kumiko Kowata, 45, a homemaker, after the earthquake knocked out water supplies to her home. The exodus has also been spurred by private companies in towns near the plants who chartered buses to help their employees and families flee to the shelter in Yamagata, even as the government has played down the effects. Many believe that the situation at the plants was twice as bad as authorities and the government were admitting. “We might be overreacting, but we also know Tokyo Electric” — the plants’ operator — “is not telling us everything,” says Hitoshi Suzuki, a 34-year-old construction worker.

Munehiro Okamoto, 36, who works for a drug making company, led a convoy of four cars and 15 people, and one golden retriever, to Yamagata from Namei, a town right by the Fukushima Daiichi plant. He described a situation in which the parents feared that their children would get radiation sickness. He said the group would reach a city, stop, then fear that it was not far enough, and resume their journey westward. “We didn’t want to keep panicking and moving on and then stopping again,” he said.

Prime Minister adviser Kenichi Matsumoto, told the press that the region surrounding the Fukushima central plant could be uninhabitable for 10 or 20 years+. But if Fukushima Daiichi becomes another Three-Mile Island or Chernobyl then they may never go back. In the meantime, people are furious at being refused shelter and medical services on the assumption that they are contaminated.

Fukushima Daiichi chernobyl_openpit3-Mile Island

Lone Pine Tree – Challenge and Reconstruction   15 comments

 

Lone Pine Tree – Symbol of Hope in Japan Tsunami City

 

japan-tsunami-lone-pine-lgThis lone Pine tree on the shore of the Tsunami is a symbol of hope and defiance for the people who have lost everything, encouraging survivors and healing the broken hearts of those who have lost loved ones.

With birds flying high above it, this 10 metre high tree is the only one left standing. It is one lone tree out of a 70,000 tree forest of black and red Pine trees that have for 300+ years protected the city of Rikuzentakata, 400 km (250 miles) north of Tokyo, from the ocean winds.

 

68b6a629ba5cd9799b4e287f7eebfb5f-tip

 

10% of the city’s population is dead or missing and the city in ruins. The renowned beach, with its stunning golden sands, listed in guide books as “one of the 100 most scenic places in Japan,” drawing about 200,000 visitors yearly, is completely gone.

Known locally as the “Pine of Hope” it is a symbol of restoration. It is one of the few land-marks tha554000004447301t remain where the devastated city of Rikuzentakata once stood.

The Pine is tall and strong despite that it is oozing resin from a scar on its trunk where the lower branches were ripped out by powerful waves. Far above at the distant peak of the tree, a riot of fresh green pine needles can be seen to be growing healthily.

 

 

Pine-Tree-Japanese-GardenThe forest of black and red Pine trees dates back to the 17th century when a wealthy business merchant created a windbreaker to protect the city’s people from the storms, with the trees he planted.

 

The Lone Pine Tree, is the only Tsunami survivior of this great forest- Rikuzentakata’s Symbol of Hope in a Broken City.

Fukushima Fallout–Radiation on the Nation   26 comments

Fukushima Fallout

Radiation on the Nation – The Truth and the Lies

“The story that the world forgot, and that everyone wishes could just be buried under a 10 foot lead plate, not only refuses to go away but is getting worse by the day. “

“The Fukushima, Japan nuclear disaster has 5 nuclear reactors burning, 2 in partial meltdown and 3 in full meltdown- and they’ve all been uncontrollably burning since March 11th. It’s been over 3 months and this nuclear disaster remains completely out of control.”

Fukushima Fallout–Radiation on the Nation

 

The EPA (Environmental Protection Agency), the ‘federal environmental safety agency arm of the US government’ fearing that the American people will learn the TRUTH as regards the exact amount of lethal radioactive fallout afflicting them, has hurriedly shut down the vast majority of its radiation detection monitors. But the food chains and water tables of the nation have already been contaminated by significant amounts of plutonium, strontium, cesium, uranium along with a wide range of other highly radioactive particles. Best not to let onto US residents about that though.

Reports from Japan including one by the Ministry of Science ~ The ABC quoting NHK news, say that concentrations of radioactive strontium 90 has been found in soil samples from 11 sites in Fukushima prefecture, including in Fukushima City, with a citizenship of 290,000 residents, about 60 kms from Japan’s stricken nuclear plant far exceeded the level that triggered compulsory resettlement ordered by Soviet authorities following the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear disaster in Ukraine.

Strontium 90 is the result of of uranium fusion in nuclear reactors fuel rods. It has a half life of 29 years. It builds up in bone and bone marrow, causing cancer and leukaemia.

Four locations in Fukushima city, outside the nuclear evacuation zone, showed that all soil samples contained caesium exceeding Japan’s legal limit of 10,000 becquerels per kilogram (4,500 per pound). . “Soil contamination is spreading in the city… Children are playing with the soil, meaning they are playing with high levels of radioactive substances. Evacuation must be conducted as soon as possible.” ~ Kobe University radiation expert professor Tomoya Yamauchi

Plutonium from the stricken Fukushima No. 1 reactor has been detected in the town of Okuma, about 1.7 km away from the plant’s front gate. It has a half-life of 24,000 years and some other radioactive elements such as uranium have a half-life of 4.47 billion years. So let’s hope that you’re not one of the statistical 1 in 2 unfortunates who will contract cancer in their lifetimes…

Evacuee Radiation Checksjapanese-child-screened-radioactivity-fukushimaRad_check_point

The latest news from Fukushima is that the highly radioactive water has started leaking from Reactor #2, into a trench which is located just 180 feet away from the sea. The Telegraph reports: “The water seeping into a trench outside the Number two reactor at Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant in northeast Japan had a radiation level of more than 1,000 millisieverts per hour.” (100,000 times the normal level)

TEPCO, is of course here to remind us that this is perfectly normal and 1 sievert water is nothing to be at all worried about:

“We do not believe it is leaking into the ocean. We are now working out where the cause of the leak is and finding ways to remove the water as soon as possible.”

Luckily, nobody believes the lies out of Japan anymore: Too bad they still believe the lies out of the US government.

“In terms of radiation leaking into the sea, this would be diluted very quickly and there would be no particular risk to fish for example ” ~Yoshiaki Oka, a professor at Tokyo’s Waseda University, told The Telegraph.

Besides the 22 samples of seaweed tested in May, 10 of which were contaminated, with five times the legal limit of iodine 131, and 20 times of caesium 137, high levels of radioactive caesium (half life of 30 years, making it extremely toxic) have been found in fish off Japan’s east coast, in Ibaraki prefecture about 80 kilometres south of the Fukushima plant.It is believed to have its origins in the overheated fuel rods at the crippled Fukushima nuclear plant, Also found, radioactive iodine 7.5 million times above the legal limit in seawater near the facility.


Daily Yomiuri reports: “Fukushima Prefecture began checking the internal radiation dose levels of selected residents Monday, the first step in its plan to examine the health of all its 2 million residents amid the crisis at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant. About 28,000 residents of Namiemachi, Iitatemura and the Yamakiya district of Kawamatacho were to receive the initial checks.”

120 randomly chosen people will receive examinations by the National Institute for Radiological Sciences in Chiba. The remainder will be checked via questionnaires which will be used to estimate suspected dosages of internal radiation in their bodies.

Estimates naturally being infinitely preferable to knowing exactly.

And just to add insult to injury:

Germany announced it was going nuclear-free. Days later Charles Hendry, the Energy Minister, said the UK will build a new generation of power stations. Very nice of him…Even nicer:

“Government officials launched a PR campaign to ensure the accident at the Fukushima nuclear facility in Japan did not derail plans for new nuclear power stations in the UK”. ~ The Guardian

“This highlights the government’s blind obsession with nuclear power and shows neither they, nor the industry, can be trusted when it comes to nuclear,” ~ Louise Hutchins, a spokeswoman for Greenpeace

But nevermind…

Radiation from Fukushima? Don’t worry they’re taking care of it. Nothing to worry about. Just walk on by…..

Fukushima Rescue Dogs   23 comments

Dogs at Minami Soma, Fukushima Rescued by Japanese Volunteers

Japanese volunteers from a Sheltie Rescue, some in radiation suits, and others in only vinyl raincoats for protection ventured into the nuclear exclusion zone to rescue stray dogs left behind in the empty streets of the abandoned town, Minami Soma in the City of Fukushima, near the nuclear plant, who were still waiting for their owners to return.


 

Minami-Soma_Dogs

Photos of the pack of Shelties wandering the abandoned streets were displayed on Asahi.com, the website of the Asahi Shimbun newspaper from which information regarding their whereabouts were obtained by Estimi Ogino, a 56 year old volunteer at an animal shelter in the Chiba prefecture. “My heart trembled. They looked just like my dog (13year old Kein) I started searching for them right away.” Estimi passed on the details to the Sheltie Rescue Team who had been receiving emails from dog lovers around the country about the abandoned pack.


The group contacted the Fukushima city branch of the Japan Collie Club, and via emails and internet research they were able to track down the owner, a breeder in Minami Soma. She was contacted by phone at a shelter and gave her go-ahead to rescue the dogs.

Seven volunteers left Tokyo early Sunday morning driving over wrecked roads and past ruined houses to meet three other volunteers in the ghost town that Minami Soma has become. Some had prepared radiation suits and others wore simple vinyl raincoats. The first two to arrive found the pack around the Odaka train station, near the owner’s home, where Associated Press writer Eric Talmadge and accompanying photographer Hiro Komae last saw the dogs in Minami Soma on April 7. The dogs had been left some dry food, and weren’t starving. It took a while to entice them with snacks, and six or seven were bundled into each car. The group saved 20 dogs in all.


They were reunited with their happy owner, who did not want to be identified, after being taken to a veterinary clinic in Kanagawa prefecture just west of Tokyo. Others are being cared for by individuals in other areas. But one volunteer Tamika Nakamura said that despite their best efforts there are still dogs out there also waiting for their owners, not yet rescued. Some of the dogs in the Sheltie pack ran away and countless others are still stranded in the evacuation zone. These they are concerned about and it is these the animal rescue team wish to return for.

Chernobyl 25 Years…The World Remembers   8 comments

 

Remember Chernobyl 1986-2011–World’s Worst Nuclear Disaster

Remember Chernobyl 1986-2011

The world marks a quarter of a century since the world’s worst nuclear disaster at Chernobyl in the Ukraine.

Ceremonies were held around the world on Tuesday 26 April to mark the 25th anniversary of the Chernobyl disaster. But haunted by a strange, eerie resonance and fears over the safety of atomic energy sparked by the Japanese earthquake -created troubles at the stricken Fukushima Daiichi nuclear.

Fukushima-nuclear-plant-2011 fukushima-milk100-200millisieverts rad risk deathjapanese-child-screened-radioactivity-fukushima-500x407the-fukushima-50-were-the-first-group-of-workers-who-remained-on-site-when-the-plant-was-burning-on-march-15

The Japanese in placing the disaster on the maximum Level 7 on the International Nuclear Event Scale, the same level as Chernobyl prompted further public fear with almost cosmic timing. reactor with the resulting radiation leak it is an event the world is unlikely to forget.

A service was held by Russian Orthodox, Patriarch Kirill, in the Keiv region in the early hours of Tuesday, striking a bell at 1:23 am – the time the explosion happened. This formally marked the start of the Remembrance Ceremonies.

Raven and exclusion zone radiation warning  Deserted ghost city of Pripyat_inside the exclusion zone Exclusion zone radiation warning signchernobyl_openpit

The explosion sent a plume of radiation across Ukraine, Belarus, western Russia and other parts of Europe in 1986. Two workers died in the explosion and twenty eight other rescuers and staff died of radiation exposure in following months. Between 1986-1987 five thousand rescue workers (liquidators) were sent in to clear up the Chernobyl plant, and to decontaminate surrounding areas. Many were not fully aware of the scale of the disaster or the true risks of their exposure to such high levels of radiation.Hundreds received radiation injuries, while thousands of cases of child thyroid cancer in the region may be linked to Chernobyl. Tens of thousands were evacuated and fears still remain and the verdict is still inconclusive on the damage to human health.

 

For some mothers the memories of “bubbling and foaming” bright yellow puddles are still vivid, whilst children born years later are reminded by their cancer-ravaged bodies. In Belarus which received about 70% of the radioactive fallout thousands of children have been treated for cancers. The stricken Fukushima Daiichi has re-lit their fears and they are horrified. They have been through it and wish for no-one else to suffer in the same way.

 

                                     memorial to workers who died trying to contain the radiationTo those who saved the world_Chernobyl 1986 

 

He (Patriarch Krill) then went out to the affected zone to hold an Easter Service at a chapel in the Chernobyl settlement ,to which Russian President Dmitry Medvedev made an unprecedented visit alongside Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych, to mark the 25th anniversary of the world’s worst nuclear accident.The two men attended a commemoration ceremony at the recently (December 2000) shut-down nuclear power station itself where a reactor exploded in 1986.

Tribute to Chernobyl disaster–Sleeping Sun–April 26 1986

 

Mr Medvedev made his first visit to Chernobyl for Tuesday’s commemoration. Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko did not take part in events at Chernobyl.

Russian President 1st visit to Chernobyl_ April 26 2011

“The crisis at the Fukushima DaiIchi Plant reminded humankind that we shouldn’t relax” ~ Russian President Dmitry Medvedev

“The events of this day showed that nobody, no matter who they are, can be assured of their safety….and the recent events at Japan’s Fukushima-1 nuclear power plant only confirmed this bitter truth.” ~ Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukowich

 

Mr Yanukovych also stressed the need for global co-operation in nuclear safety, saying: "Chernobyl was a challenge of planetary dimensions. The answer to this challenge can be provided only by the world community." Soviet engineers encased the damaged reactor in a temporary concrete casing (sarcophagus) to limit the radiation but the existing sarcophagus is dilapidated and could leak. Or even worse collapse altogether triggering a large scale radiation release, consequently a new shield is now needed. A donor conference in Kiev, Ukraine, last week raised 550m euros (£486m; $798m) of the 740m euros needed to build a new shelter and a storage facility for spent fuel. The new containment shelter large enough to encase an area the size of “Madison Square Garden” and should be able to completely enclose the old casing and the Chernobyl Reactor 4 by 2015.

 

Chernobyl disused reactor_enclosed in a concrete and lead sarcophagus_In the foreground is a memorial to workers who died trying to contain the radiation

They also placed the first stone of a monument to clean-up workers and laid flowers at another monument. Officials unveiled a monument dedicated to victims from Belarus.

Officials unveil monument 

Mr Medvedev has called for new international rules covering safety at nuclear plants. Such rules would permit the "necessary" development of nuclear energy, he said.

"Today, I sent proposals to [world] leaders… aimed at guaranteeing the necessary development of nuclear energy in the world while preventing at the same time catastrophic global consequences [of accidents]," Mr Medvedev said in remarks as he stood in spring sunshine in front of the hulk of the disused plant, according to Reuters. He did not specify what the proposals were.

Chernobyl's Reactor No 4_enclosed in a concrete and lead sarcophagus

Soviet officials held off reporting the accident for several days, and Mr Medvedev said the disaster had taught nations of the importance of telling the truth to their people. "The duty of a state is to tell the truth to its people. It must be acknowledged that the [Soviet] state did not always behave correctly," he said." In order for such tragedies never to be repeated we must all be honest, we must provide absolutely exact information about what is going on."

Call for honesty

The call for honesty was welcomed by some 3,000 Chernobyl victims who joined a memorial service at a monument in Kiev. They complain that benefits packages for workers made ill by participating in the clean-up have been cut in recent years.

The crisis at Japan’s Fukushima plant has triggered renewed protests over the safety of nuclear power.

image People light candles placed in the form radioactive symbol in Kiev, Ukraine

The legacy of Chernobyl will be remembered for much, much longer than anyone would wish. According to estimates this area of Northern Ukraine will be uninhabitable for at the very least, decades, if not centuries.

                                                 Remember Chernobyl 1986-2011Exclusion zone-The Land of Wolves

Nuclear Ghost Town: The Reality of Nuclear Accidents and Relocation aka Chernobyl