Archive for the ‘Nuclear Reactor’ Tag

Chernobyl Nuclear Disaster Anniversary–30 Years On   24 comments

 

“Sirens were sounded at the same moment as the first explosion at the reactor, in the early hours of 26 April 1986.

The meltdown at Chernobyl Nuclear Plant was the worst nuclear disaster in history.”

 

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“Chernobyl is not a historical event in Ukraine but a living reality for an unquantifiable number of people.” –Tom Burridge, Chernobyl

 

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“We honour those who lost their health and require a special attention from the government and society,” he said in a speech in Chernobyl. “It’s with an everlasting pain in our hearts that we remember those who lost their lives to fight nuclear death.” – Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko

 

 

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“The magnitude of the tragedy could have been immeasurably larger if it were not for the incomparable bravery and self-sacrifice of fire fighters, military personnel, experts and medics who honourably fulfilled their citizen’s duty. Many of them sacrificed themselves to save others.” – Russian President Vladimir Putin

Sources:

bbc.co.uk

europe.newsweek.com

Japan Tsunami and Nuclear Disaster–4th Anniversary   14 comments

 

Japan Tsunami and Nuclear Disaster – 4th Anniversary

World’s Worst Nuclear Disaster Since Chernobyl : 11 March 2011-2015

 

Fukushima_1_Nuclear_Power_Plant_02_wikifukushima1

In Japan thousands of people are still homeless and all of the nation’s nuclear reactors are still offline, four years after a magnitude 9.0 earthquake and tsunami caused the world’s worst nuclear disaster since Chernobyl.

In March 2011, as radiation began to leak from Japan’s Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant, 120,000+ residents living within 20 kilometres of were evacuated. High radiation levels still prevent these nuclear refugees returning to their homes, and they still live in fear of long-term health damage from exposure to the radiation, such as cancer.

Fukushima-Nuclear-Radiation-Spread-Map

$15 billion+ has been earmarked for a radiation-reducing project in Japans towns near the reactor. Currently there are 88,000 temporary storage facilities housing the radioactive waste here. Despite opposition from residents there are plans in Tokyo to build close by the reactor a permanent nuclear storage facility.

japonia-fukushima_2050publications comAfter the Fukushima disaster, all 48 Japanese nuclear reactors were shut down and safety concerns have ensured they remain so. 60%+ of the public, according to opinion polls, now oppose nuclear energy.

The United Nations has ignored a 128,000 signatures petition since November, 2013, requesting that charge of Fukushima is taken on by the world community.

Meanwhile, every day 300 tons (maybe more) of radioactive water is still discharging into the Pacific Ocean with the potential for more to follow despite that the tests on currents along the California Coast show that it is already radioactive.

Nuclear evacuees are being forced to return to heavily contaminated areas and evidence of damage to thyroids amongst children who were caught downwind to the disaster are rising frighteningly fast.

However!

  • Since 2012 solar energy production has increased to the point where it now produces the equivalent of eleven nuclear reactors, and industrial wind farms operate very successfully off the coast of Fukushima.
  • Five U.S. reactors have shut since the 2011 Fukushima disaster reducing operating facilities to less than one hundred.
  • The number of US staff who work in solar are now double the number working in coal mines. And the Tea Party’s green section is actively encouraging the use of renewable energies.
  • Germany is increasing its renewable energy output aiming for 80% + by 2050. And France is also switching its interests to renewable energy, and with this in mind has not begun any new construction of nuclear reactors.
  • On a global level the “Solartopian revolution” is coming in both below budget and ahead of schedule.

Remember Fukushima–3rd Anniversary, Japan 11.3.2011   26 comments

 

        Fukushima, Japan 3rd Anniversary: March 11, 2011

                              fukushimabb-01japan-nuclear-tsunami-earthquake

 

Remember Fukushima_abovetopsecretdespair fukushima-unit-1-aftermath-900x675 

 

Fukushima Nuclear Denial

Remember Fukushima, March 11th 2011 – Many Would Rather You Didn’t….

 

citz_fihn1March 11th 2011: Three years later, marking the Third Anniversary of the Japan tsunami and Fukushima nuclear catastrophe, and still the denial and suppression of information, regarding the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Reactor continues.

 

It is information suppression on a global scale involving bodies such as the International Atomic Energy Agency, [IAEA] formed by the United Nations in 1957, national government bodies, the all-powerful nuclear industry and nuclear based scientists, not to mention, even the media, and others who stand to gain from the existence of nuclear energy.

"Fukushima is an eerie replay of the denial and controversy that began with the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. This is the same nuclear denial that also greeted nuclear bomb tests, such as Semipalatinsk in the Kazakhstan, plutonium plant disasters at Windscale in northern England and the nuclear power plant accidents at Three Mile Island in the United States and Chernobyl in what is now Ukraine."

Furthermore, "About a month after the disaster, on April 19, 2011, Japan chose to dramatically increase its official "safe’ radiation exposure levels from 1 mSv [a measure of radiation dose] t o 20 mSv per year–20 times higher than the U.S. exposure limit. This allowed the Japanese government to downplay the dangers of the fallout and avoid evacuation of many badly contaminated areas."

~Yale University Professor Emeritus Charles Perrow in the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists

imagesEPA-raising-limit-cartoon_communichi_org

"To date no health effects have been reported in any person as a result of radiation exposure from the accident," the IAEA in 2011, a claim it holds to today.  

And a new State Secrets Act sanctioned by the Japanese government now endorses the right to restrict Fukushima reporting- on pain of a 10 year jail sentence.

 "It’s the cancerous mark of a nuclear regime bound to control all knowledge of a lethal global catastrophe now ceaselessly escalating."

~Harvey Wasserman, co-author of Killing Our Own, in a piece entitled Japan’s New Fukushima Fascism.

Fukushima is different because of the sheer extent of disaster; Multiple meltdowns, on-going pollution of a significant chunk of Japan, airborne radioactive fallout conveyed by the winds throughout the world, and colossal amounts of radioactivity disappearing into the Pacific Ocean, flowing with the currents and transported in the systems of the marine life unfortunate enough to consume the nuclear contaminants.

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The Medical Implications of Fukushima:

"Every increment of radiation exposure produces an incremental increase in the risk of cancer." 

~ National Council on Radiation Protection.

There have already been disproportionate numbers of thyroid cancer cases suddenly arising in Japan. This is a well-known primary indication of early radioactivity damage to the human body. Likewise damaged thyroid glands in Californian children were determined, in a study by the “Radiation and Public Health Project,” to be directly attributed to radioactive Fukushima fall-out. [Study conducted by Joseph Mangano and Dr Janette Sherman of the above mentioned Project and also Dr Chris Busby]

There is no such thing as a "safe" level of radioactivity. Any amount can kill.

"The Fukushima disaster is not over and will never end. The radioactive fallout which remains toxic for hundreds to thousands of years covers large swaths of Japan will never be "cleaned up’ and will contaminate food, humans and animals virtually forever."

~ Dr Helen Caldicott, a founder of Physicians for Social Responsibility quoted from Nuclear Madness, one of her books on nuclear power.

All Bluefin Tuna Caught In California-Radioactive:

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In a study by the Stanford University, every Bluefin Tuna arriving from Japan that they caught in Californian waters was without fail, contaminated with radioactive cesium-137, [large scale emissions occurring from the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Plant]:

“The tuna packaged it up [the radiation] and brought it across the world’s largest ocean. We were definitely surprised to see it at all and even more surprised to see it in every one we measured."

~ Daniel Madigan, Study Leader.

Costs and Consequences of the Fukushima Daiichi Disaster:

~ The Environmental Health Policy Institute of Physicians for Social Responsibility (PSR)

“Some 800 square kilometres are ‘exclusion’ zones of "abandoned cities, towns, agricultural land, homes and properties, and from which 159,128 people have been evicted."

~ PSR senior scientist Steven Starr. 

"Should the public discover the true health cost of nuclear pollution, a cry would rise from all parts of the world and people would refuse to cooperate passively with their own death."

~ Rosalie Bertell, a Catholic nun and author of No Immediate Danger, referencing “the decades of suppression of the impacts of nuclear power and the reason behind it.”

 

Sources:

opednews.com – Karl Grossman

theecologist.org

zerohedge.com

topinfopost.com

counterpunch.org

iaea.org

thebulletin.org

psr.org

ecowatch.com

Out With The Thermal Undies! In With The Anti-Radiation Undies!!   26 comments


Out With The Thermal Undies!

In With The Anti-Radiation Undies!!

Anti-radiation underwear_swimwear

As most people will realise even if they’re not particularly interested in realising, radiation levels near the infamous Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear plant site in Japan are still unsafe, but surprise, surprise, there have also been concerns that contaminated water might just, possibly, by some remote and wholly inexplicable chance 😉 be making its way out of the radio-active hot zone.

However, courtesy of the money grabbing on the back of the nuclear disaster, Japanese company, the Yamamoto Corporation an exciting new range of anti-radiation underwear and even swimsuits are now available to the intrepid N-plant worker and the slightly over-enthusiastic extreme tourist.

Anti-radiation Swimwear Smile

Designed first and foremost for the Fukushima emergency workers still engaged in the unenviable and altogether far too hazardous job of cleaning up the plant, this flattering offering from Yamamoto Corporation will undoubtedly prove a hit with those swimming enthusiasts looking to escape the ice and cold of winter, albeit in a radio-active hot zone, or even those preparing themselves mentally and physically for the 2014 Valhalla Basin Winter Galactic Olympics. (Granted they could have had a similar experience swimming in the Methane seas of Titan, Saturn’s moon, but the enticing prospect of basking in the hot zone around the Fukushima N-plant swimming playfully in its radio-active waters Winking smile is apparently a temptation the Yamamoto Corporation, for reasons best known to themselves, consider too great to endure… well whatever takes your fancy. And extreme tourism can carry its own unique notoriety after all…. Smile

This charmingly styled anti-radiation swimwear range, bearing a close resemblance to a deep-sea diver’s wetsuit is designed to protect the intrepid wearer when they take the plunge and enjoy a nice, hot, full-body dip in the radioactive water Smile is made from a bio-rubber material that contains microscopic bubbles – clever little bubbles and not at all like those you find in your snuggly hot bubble bath… oh no, these are special bubbles and deflect almost 100 percent of beta particles. Could get very hot and sticky in there but then again if you insist in swimming in a radioactive hot zone presumably you don’t care…SmileAnd neither will you mind pretty little price tag for these wetsuits which will set you back ¥150,000 ($1,078) Surprised smile

Anti-Radiation Underwear

So now you’re all hot under the radio-active collar and ready to rock and roll, next up is the Anti-Radiation Underwear Smile

Yes! Out with the thermal undies and in with the anti-radiation undies! Tastefully styled to protect the lower spine and pelvic area, these 7lb beautieslead infused anti-radiation undies are purpose designed to protect those all-important bits and bobs of you that you really, really really don’t want bombarded with heavy duty radiation Winking smile Of course they could prove a touch impractical…a little weighty perhaps….possibly bordering on the manically bulky side… Winking smile but think of the peace of mind these 7.5 lb. undies will give you Smile Block out the majority of those highly radioactive gamma rays…slam the door completely in the face of all those other lesser breeds of ionizing radiation and worry no more! You are wearing your anti-radiation undies! And they will cost you a mere ¥80,850 ($829) Surprised smile A mere drop in the radio-active ocean. Smile

Source:  geek.com

Silence In The Shadows (3)   89 comments

 

Silence in the Shadows ~ 3

Where are you going??!!”  She eyed him appraisingly apparently unfazed. “You’re going back to the zone??”  He glared at her as if she had grown two heads. “And how exactly do you expect to get past the check points?!”

“They’ll never know…” she smiled secretively, confident…and in a shimmer of moulton fire she became before his eyes something else… He started, muttering a string of expletives. A glowing black-gold star wolf stood before him in her place, tail wagging gently, head lowered, watching him. When she spoke again it was silently, in his mind – telepathy. “The wolf is more tolerant of the radiation. …if the levels increase and the risks become too great I’ll turn back…” (Silence in the Shadows ~ 2)

Copyright: Europa’s Icewolf 2013 ~ All Rights Reserved.

Night on an alien world

Exclusion zone_beyond the checkpoints

Liquid night moved fluidly in its telepathic touch reaching out with the diversity of a thousand worlds – worlds that lay far beyond the stars – probing, touching in a subtle quest for the tundra of secrets beneath the carefully layered protection of dark and light, blending in the alien moon touch.

Dark shadows raced across the darkened tundra of the exclusion zone plains skating across a rock strewn terrain.

Twin satellites – huge and radiant, hung silently in the star scope beyond; their shivering iridescence dancing and playing in an alien night, casting slivers of satellite suns chasing ghost-like across a cratered planetscape.

Night on an alien world

 

Sirian she-wolfBathed in an otherworldly glow_N-reactor plant structure

Shimmering in the diamond-kissed emissions of the zone’s twin satellites, and bathed in an other-worldly glow, the devastated N-reactor plant structure stood sentinel to the visiting Sirian she-wolf flitting wraith-like amongst the toxic, stellar structures, elongated shadows sliding smoothly into the soundless tranquillity of the void.

Howling_in_the_Land_of_Wolves-The Deadlands

 

Yelena was alone other than the ever present zone wolves flickering in and out of eerie rock formations beyond the irradiated deadlands. Alone, whilst the light of a thousand worlds burned down in remote, icy indifference-brilliant and piercing in a cool, exotic night. And a glittering myriad of new constellations teased an unearthly light into pirouetting effortlessly across an unfamiliar planetscape.

 

The radiation count was high here. Yelena could taste it in the air, her coat and skin prickly with its unseen presence, strands of alien wolf hair crackling in the radioactivity, darkening to smoke black in the monochromatic light of the zone’s twin satellites, the collar-mounted Geiger counter chirping frantically.

Barren beauty_remote and foresakenMystical shrouded structures rose up like vaguely menacing spectres in the dark regions of the starry arrays that were her world. She was beautiful. Yet it was a barren beauty, remote and forsaken in this unnatural radio-active Land of Wolves.

Night in an alien exclusion zone.

Ears flicking, nose raised to catch the untold scents of the mysteries of the zone, Yelena strained to hear above and beyond the absolute silence infusing the shivering planetscape, timeless and disturbingly bereft of all sound other than the empty stirring of the wind. The beating heart of eternity cool and changeless and the ominous chitter of the Geiger counter, a constant reminder that all was far from well in this contaminated land.

Nuclear_Contaminated land

Night shone down on the foreboding sentinel of the toxic reactor skeletising the gaunt structures and embracing the cool, concrete bases. Sudden spectral light slid uneasily through the exposed reactor cores throwing sinister and outlandish shadows chasing across insubstantial stadia into the critically contaminated lands that lay beyond.

             Zone Wolves_N-ReactorsContaminated Lands

Caught in dazzling primeval shards restless Zone Wolves glimmered in sudden cloud-cleared lunar arrays, setting alight the frothy, and platinum-frost coat-overlay characteristic of the packs of radio-active N-wolves that roamed wary and shadowlike within the hostile environs of the exclusion zone.

Hunting in the Land of Wolves.

Yelena watched silently

 

Yelena watched silently shielded by the haunting sentinels and alien crags, rock faces, dusted with layers of dark and radio-active regolith. The aloof glitter of distant stars abnormally bright in the clear skies. Eclipsing pools of lunar light sinking without a sound into the mystery of veiled, astrophysical musings, catching briefly, the remote, rippling beams in fluid star black eyes. Dark shadows played across her eyes fire sparking across her fine boned muzzle in layers of dark chocolate and golden sunsets.

Night in an alien exclusion zone.

 

A wretched undulating wind eddied amongst the structures echoing inconsolably with tales of another time and place. It lifted Yelena’s soft black-ash fur touching her mind and spirit with the mournful sound of its desolate keening, till she too flung back dark, silken head and howled. A chilling, sound that evoked the devastating sense of loss and anguish of those abandoned or who had chosen to linger a little too long – lost to the Land of Wolves. Discharging the tortured suffering of the land, the catastrophic heartbreak and the numbing despair; its contamination and its abandonment and the dying ghost towns left in its wake; the tragic, soul-destroying song of the stars as the dark, stricken she-wolf called her grief to the interstellar void. A distant, unfeeling void…

Howling in the Land of Wolves

Howling in the land of Wolves.

His passage was confident… deliberate… His advance a single, measured move calculated to block any further headway -The exclusion zone Alpha Male, polished starlight glinting off his radio-active form. Powerful and not of her world, claiming not only leadership of the pack but demanding also mating rights to the visiting alien she-wolf. Defiant She-wolf! … Yelena bared glistening teeth at him both in stark momentary warning and also quick sun-flamed invitation as she sought comfort in the zone wolves Alpha under the light of another star…..

       Exclusion zone AlphaBlending in the alien moon touch

She-wolf! Night Caller!

Liquid night moved fluidly in its telepathic touch reaching out with the diversity of a thousand worlds – worlds that lay far beyond the stars – probing, touching in a subtle quest for the tundra of secrets beneath the carefully layered protection of dark and light, blending in the alien moon touch.

 

Night in an alien exclusion zone

Copyright: Europa’s Icewolf 2013 ~ All Rights Reserved.

Japan Nuclear And Earthquake-Tsunami Disaster Anniversary: 2011~2013   39 comments

Japan Nuclear Disaster And Earthquake-Tsunami 2011~2013

“I bowed and begged them to stay…”

Two years ago today the Japanese people were reeling from the nightmare of the 8.9-magnitude earthquake – the most powerful one ever recorded in Japan, and the 30-foot wave tsunami that crashed as much as 6 miles inshore on March 11 2011; It was a nightmare that killed in the region of 20,000 people and triggered the world’s worst nuclear crisis since the Chernobyl disaster 27 years ago.

Fukushima Nuclear Plant...Remembering...

Whilst the atomic accident at Japan’s Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Plant did not actually claim any lives it has left tens of thousands of people driven from their homes in a mass evacuation and reduced whole towns to an uninhabitable state as a consequence of the dangerous radiation levels. A situation that will probably last for many decades to come.

                     Fukushima-radiation-could-be-ocean-risk  Japanese Evacuees  Contamination

A report compiled by America’s Institute of Nuclear Power Operations highlights the heroism of workers at Japan’s Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant in the disaster’s aftermath, which saw three reactors go into full nuclear meltdown…

“The plant’s back-up generators also failed, leaving most of the facility with no power. Workers struggled to cool the overheating reactors in ‘complete darkness’ while hundreds of aftershocks rocked the area, including two of greater than 7.0 magnitude. The workers persisted in their efforts despite ‘elevated and continuously changing dose rates and contamination levels,’ the report said. Food shortages meant they were given only a biscuit for breakfast and a bowl of noodles for dinner. Many slept on the floor. Some of the workers had lost their homes and families to the tsunami, but continued to toil at the crippled nuclear plant. Some operators volunteered to perform dangerous jobs, the report notes, while many had no formal training for the tasks they were attempting. They relied on "creativity" and "unconventional or unique methods to deal with ‘conditions that were beyond the design basis for the station.’ “ ~ America’s Institute of Nuclear Power Operations

Reactor Explosions and Fires

No. 2 reactor at Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant suffered an explosion when cooling systems in the Unit failed and pressure inside the reactor soared. Reactor Units Nos. 1 and 3 were blasted by hydrogen explosions which blew the roof off No. 1 unit and tore No 3 reactor apart, and a fire broke out in reactor No. 4 spent fuel storage pond.

                  

  No 4 reactor building Fukushima  FukDaic1 Reactor building covered by steel frame

Masao Yoshida then Fukushima Daiichi plant chief told state broadcaster NHK: "In the first week immediately after the accident I thought a few times ‘I’m going to die.”

Making reference to the explosion of hydrogen that ripped the buildings around rectors 1 and 3 to shreds, he added: "I thought it was all over.”

In a provisional report released by the Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO) Masao described how he was forced to face the fact that they had a full blown disaster on their hands “When lights flickered and went out, including those on the control panels.”

fukushima-control-reactor

"I came to realise a tsunami had hit the site as one of the workers rushed into the room, shouting ‘Sea water is gushing in!’ I felt totally at a loss after losing power sources. Other workers appeared anxious. They argued, and one asked: ‘Is there any reason for us to be here when there is nothing we can do to control (the reactors)?’ I bowed and begged them to stay.

As immobilised electrical and cooling systems at the nuclear power plant ground to a halt the largely unsung heroes – the heroic plant workers – in a terrifyingly high risk situation took life-threatening health risks in a desperate, punishing bid to prevent a worse nuclear disaster.

The beleaguered, under fire operator of Japan’s Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant released accounts from the plant workers’ themselves describing some of their most desperate moments as they struggled and fought to bring the stricken nuclear plant under control…

                No 4 reactor at Fuk Dai plant  Fukushima 11 March 2012 Credit Reuters_Kyodo 

  • Overwhelming challenges as workers endeavoured to manually open a ventilation valve in a vital effort to discharge pressure from a reactor container.

"We put on the full protection gear but couldn’t possibly let young workers do the task, as we had to go into an area where the radiation levels were high. When I got to the place to open the valve, I heard eerie, deep popping noise from the torus (a donut-shaped structure at the bottom of the reactor). When I put one of my feet on the torus to reach the valve, my black rubber boot melted and slipped (due to the heat).” one worker recalled.

  • Dire working conditions as they strove relentlessly to combat the dangerously unstable and crippled nuclear plant.

"We experienced big aftershocks, and many times we had to run up a hill in desperation (fearing a tsunami) with the full-face mask still on,” one worker said.

  • Race against time to set down power cables and reinstate the electric supply:

"We finished the work (in one section) in several hours, although it usually requires one month or two. It was an operation we had to do in puddles, fearing electrification,” the worker said.

  • Explosions and fires at the plant give a free rein to the release of critically hazardous radiation levels, compelling TEPCO to evacuate all but a handful of brave and desperately needed workers, out of a nuclear workforce of hundreds.

                   Fukushima Nuclear Plant Workers  Credit: Tokyo Electric Power Co (TEPCO): radioactive water on the floor inside the building of a water treatment facility at TEPCO's Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant.  Fukushima No2 Reactor torus room_Credit: REUTERS

Those workers became known as the "The Fukushima Fifty”, but the final numbers of workers risking lives and health to join the battle increased by thousands who were also joined by partner company technicians, the likes of Toshiba and Hitachi.

They undertook the commission of ensuring the steady flow of cooling water streaming into the six plant reactors, three of which none-the-less were later to undergo overheating and ultimate melted down.

Cooling System Failures at Japan’s Power Plants

“Reactors 1, 2 and 3 experienced a full meltdown in the wake of an earthquake and tsunami in March” ~ Nuclear Emergency Response Headquarters (Japan}

“Nuclear fuel rods in reactors 2 and 3 probably melted during the first week of the nuclear crisis whilst fuel rods at the heart of reactor No. 1 melted almost completely in the first 16 hours after the disaster struck.”

A time to remember...2011~2013Fukushima Explosion

“We Came Close To Losing Northern Japan”

~Tokyo Electric Power Co.

Radioactive Material Dumped Dumped In Rivers   54 comments

Radioactive Material Is Being Dumped in Japan’s Rivers…

 

Japan Inside The Exclusion Zone_Credit_ tumblerThe Japanese newspaper the Asahi Shimbun has recently reported that radioactive water used to wash down contaminated buildings of the settlements close to the Fukushima Nuclear Reactor, which should have been sent through a stringent purification procedure was in fact being drained away into rivers rather than undergoing the intended strict disposal methods along with collected radioactive top soil and leaf debris which should have been securely and meticulously stored. This disposal method was seen to be standard procedure at 13 locations in Naraha, Iitate and Tamura. The allegation, supported by photographs

Many of the N-plant workers, fully aware of the breaching of rules and procedures set in place for the decontamination work claimed they were simply following orders from those above them on the basis that following nuclear waste disposal rules to the letter meant they would never complete the decontamination work. They also claimed that they were ordered as regarded the sites that monitor radiation, to merely sweep up around them and that was to be all they should do.

Fukushima-radiation-could-be-ocean-riskThe government has committed 650 billion yen ($7.4 billion) to clean up the surroundings in contaminated towns and villages. The Environment Ministry engaged Japans most prominent contractors, the Taisei Corp who have a 7.72 billion yen contract in Iitate, and the Maeda Corp who have a contract in Naraha to the value of 18.82 billion yen. Infrastructures, highways and farm land will have radioactive substance sited within 65 feet of their location stripped away, if the objective is realised.

The Japanese government now plans to take tough action on the corrupt practice alleged to be currently in place around the Fukushima nuclear plant, and residents in surrounding areas have secured an apology from Senior Vice Environment Minister Shinji Inoue.

 

Cleaning Radioactive Water With Graphene

The Rice University of Houston and the Lomonosov Moscow State University has generated exciting new research that suggests that there may be a way to use graphene, to reverse the disastrous environmental impact at the Fukushima Nuclear Plant.

**Graphene is a substance made of pure carbon. Its atoms are arranged in a similar way to graphite, but in a very light sheet only one-atom in density. It’sgraphene_from_gases_for_new_bendable_electronics_ been suggested that Graphene could also be a highly significant factor in increasing the efficiency of the desalinization process, in flexible semi-conductors, and the improvement of electronics. Processes based on graphene could also be useful in the cleaning up of the natural gas industry, and if this report proves successful, it could play a very important role in the nuclear waste clean-up.

The researchers involved say that when graphene oxide flakes are introduced to contaminated water, the result is the condensing into clusters of the offending radionuclides. They can then be split away and securely disposed of.

"Graphene oxide introduced to simulated wastes coagulated within minutes, quickly clumping the worst toxins," Chemist Stepan Kalmykov.

"It’s too hot. Companies have to ship contaminated water to repository sites around the country at very large expense. The ability to quickly filter out contaminants on-site would save a great deal of money." ~ Chemist James Tour

Thousands of Japanese residents have been forced into homeless and it could take decades to clear all the contamination and complete the clean-up. Even then some towns and villages may have to be abandoned forever.


Graphite

** Graphene is made by chemically processing graphite — also found in the ‘lead’ of pencils. A sheet of graphene is just a single layer of carbon atoms- one of the most abundant materials on Earth, an individual layer of crystalline graphene_Costas Galiotis_FORTH ICE-HT and Dept Materials Science Uni of  Patrasgraphite -locked together in a strongly-bonded honeycomb pattern.

Flexible, translucent and the most ultrathin material ever made Graphene is also the strongest substance known to mankind — 100-300 times stronger than steel and several times tougher than diamond. The best heat conductor known to man and better at conducting electricity than silicon, with its unique optical properties. Graphene has caused a dramatic surge in research and potential applications for the material.

An inherently sustainable and economical technology, Graphene could lead to roll up behind the ear mobile phones , paper thin HD televisions, and fold away into a tiny square, bendy electronic newspapers. It could transform the medications we use, and replace silicon which is currently used in the creation of the chips in our computers. It is also possible that Graphene being such a bendy substance could replace existing touch-screens materials for devices such as tablets making the likes of the i-pad as out-dated as anything else in ancient history!


Sources:

  • alienscientist.com
  • NEWS 24
  • EarthTechling; Beth Buczynski
  • The Lede; Robert Mackey

Silence in the Shadows (1)   58 comments

 

Silence in the Shadows ~ 1

Yerik_Yalena (Image: Europa's Icewolf 2012)Yelena_Radiation Exposure (Image:Europa's Icewolf 2012)

“You’ve already been exposed to excessively high radiation levels,” Yerik stated matter of factually. “Any further exposure… it’s too dangerous. You’re not going.”

Yelena* rounded on him angrily, a growl in every breath.Yelena_N-Plant (Image:Europa's Icewolf 2012)

“You should have told me!”  He continued, ignoring her furious protests and the wolf flaring in her eyes. “How long did you think you could hide the truth from us? No one knows the exact amount you were exposed to – do they?!! Nothing was ever recorded. An inconvenient, dark secret those concerned were paid to forget. I do not wish for you to die in the land of wolves!

If you walk in the land of wolves you may not be able to return…if the contamination is too great there would be no choice but to leave you there. It is too high a price to pay for walking in the land of wolves.”

“I am not afraid to die in the land of wolves!! And I have no intentions of doing so, so you have nothing to fear!”

* (The light of the Sun)

____________________________________________________________________________________

Silence in the Shadows (Image:Europa's Icewolf 2012)

 

Cutting-edge Geiger Counters rattled incessantly clicking with increasing rapidity in the irradiated silence that marked the desolate aftermath of the nuclear war zone – painfully evident in the silent ghost cities; uninhabited but otherwise undamaged, surrounded by dead zones and lines of black skeletal trees. Sludge-ridden radioactive rivers flanked the route that led to the N-plant, a tall silent sentinel standing eerily against the sky line; the Land of Wolves. Yelena_Exclusion Zone (Image:Europa's Icewolf 2012)Yelena walked quietly listening to the silence; a strange, unearthly stimulant, chillingly unnatural.

The sheer alien, otherworldliness of the Zone sent shivers of something tingling through bones and spirits unsettling even the most hardened amongst the accompanying Astro-Biological Research Team. Stalked ever by the invisible radioactive enemy they gathered their data quickly, ever mindful of the Geiger counters warning of rising radiation levels – dangerous miliseiverts, as they made wary progress deep into the contaminated heart of the Zone of Exclusion.


Halting for a moment outside an abandoned security building entrance, Yelena gazed upwards at the imposing tinted glass walls and the pyramid-dome entrance, absorbing the unnerving, empty calm it exuded in the alien sun. Dark, distorted shadows flitted uneasily high on the smoked glass windowed building overlooking the ghost cities of the exclusion zone.

Yelena_Abandoned Security Building (Image:Europa's Icewolf 2012)

A tainted wind breezing gently, brooding alien skies off-setting dark clouds roiling on the horizon; in the distance dead satellite monitors, looking out over the rusting rails of deserted office buildings from lofty heights.

Once a tall tastefully designed modern building, state-of-the-art, now a deserted, sightless reflection where the sunlight was a strange mirror-image in darkened, dusty glass windows.

Yelena gazed up at its sunlit front disquieted, at the roof-top tracking probes lying idle and silent. They would never work again – ever. There should have been life here but there was none. Activity, but the building was sealed, locked in time, its inhabitants long gone, and the silent tracking probes still and lifeless, and on closer inspection corrupted by corrosion. No birds would sing here, no chitter of unseen insect life. No calls. No cries. Just a still, empty silence where there should have been life, and the shivering of the wind.

Copyright: Europa’s Icewolf 2012 ~ All Rights Reserved.

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."

 

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