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THIS JOURNAL WILL "TELL IT LIKE IT IS" REGARDING DIFFERENT FORMS OF ENERGY AND THEIR GLOBAL IMPLICATIONS/PROBLEMS

WHO SHALL PAY FOR NUCLEAR WASTE TRANSPORTATION AND LONG-TERM STORAGE ?

11 Aug 2011

IN THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA the need to safely dispose of the nuclear waste at the hundreds of sites, including nine(9) where now-closed reactors once stood, has taken on new urgency in recent months, after the Fukushima Tragedy made it very clear that globally, “Spent-Fuel Pools” function as long term repositories; THEY ARE NOT.  Actually, “Spent-Fuel” is a misnomer.  Spent-fuel retains more than 90% of its radioactive energy (though not usable “as-is”) for Nukes and yet, it CONTAINS THE MOST TOXIC OF NUKE BY-PRODUCTS IMAGINABLE. A whole bevy of hard to enumerate and even read, names of short, and long-life “Transuranics”- Isotopes.  Some of these will remain deadly radioactive for millennia; If the world knew how to “clean up this mess” brought upon us by the Uranium Energy Cartel, they would already have done so.  SPENT-FUEL POOLS ARE NO SUBSTITUTE FOR LONG-TERM NUKE WASTE REPOSITORIES.

PROBLEM REMAINS: WHERE TO SAFELY STORE NUCLEAR WASTE FOR THE LONG TERM. We must realize that this is rapidly growing global problem;  However, for the purpose of this article, we shall narrow our concern focus to the United States.  TRUTH IS: We too have failed to designate a permanent nuclear repositories.  Plainly said, after 50 years of producing nuclear waste, we still don’t have a NUCLEAR WASTE REPOSITORY despite lip service by several administrations to remedy the problem.  In fact everyone says yes but, “Not in My Back Yard (NIMBY)!”

POLITICS OF YUCCA MOUNTAIN:  The Yucca Mountain Nuclear Waste Repository, was built at a cost of $13.5 Bn, and  is located in Nevada, but was never used , or is likely to be used, given the opposition of Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV).  Political will has been non-existent.  All important politicians say: “Not In My Back-Yard” – After all they must be reelected if they wish to continue to “serve the people of their state”.  Such was the case with Sen Reid (D-NV) ; Likewise, by his failed political opponent, Tea Party favorite Sharron Angle, even though she advocated expanded nuclear energy. Soon after taking office, Pres. Obama made it his mission to ensure that Yucca Mountain would never open; Accordingly, DOE Secretary Steven Chu, has repeatedly expressed his opposition to the site, and the Obama administration has tried to cut its funding. Legal challenges to the Yucca decision are pending.  If the Yucca mountain plan IS dead, the government has to find a new site and, the ultimate cost almost certainly will rise.

WE WANT OUR “WASTE FUND MONEY” BACK! Says the “National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners(NARUC)”, which represents State Public Service Commissioners, is suing DOE for simultaneously rejecting Yucca Mountain as a waste repository, while continuing to impose the fee on nuclear utilities. On 1 Nov 2010, DOE Secretary Dr. Steven Chu said:There is no reasonable basis at this time to conclude that either excess, or insufficient funds, are being collected, and thus we will not propose an adjustment to the fee to Congress”; Naturally, NARUC is not happy with Dr. Chu’s assessment.  NARUC spokesman, Rob Thormeyer said: “By articulating its current view that the Yucca project is ‘not workable’, the Administration is essentially conceding that there is no factual basis for any fee assessment in the first place; Yet, citing a congressional requirement for an annual assessment of the fee, the Administration contends that it has unlimited discretion to maintain a fee, even though said fee cannot be justified. This reasoning is tortuous as best”.  SO, THE NARUC FOLKS THINK THE ADMINISTRATION SPEAKS WITH A “FORKED TONGUE”;  Even so,  eventually we the public, will need to “pay the Piper’ for Nuke waste disposal -AGAIN!, Let me tell you why.

NOW THE BONE OF CONTENTION IS MONEY, A lot of money;  About $25 B collected so far by our utility companies, appears to have vanished, and no one knows for sure where it went, or where it is going;  Some say to the “The General Revenue Fund”.  Not surprisingly, the nuclear utilities that have been paying the fee would rather not do so. SAN ANTONIO’S NUKES, STP #1 & #2, PAY THIS FEE TOO.  It is this money, that NARUC, and their Lawyer friends want to get their hands on.  UNFORTUNATELY FOR US ALL: “It sounds like there’s a piggy bank, and there’s all this money that is available for a future nuclear repository, but there isn’t. Congress has spent it on other things.” The $25 billion amounts to little more than a federal IOU that will need to be repaid.  So said Richard Stewart, a New York University law professor and co-author of a book on nuclear waste policy.

SO WHERE IS DOE on this, their responsibility? – Mum is the word. I have written articles about the inscrutable Dr. Steven Chu Secretary of DOE.  He has been given the help of a “Blue Ribbon Committee” last Jan 2011 to look into the Nuke waste problem, and recently the Senate designated an “Assistant for Nuclear Affairs” to lighten his burden, or increase his efficiency.  Dr. Chu just pushes all help aside.  Recently, Damien LaVera, a spokesman for DOE said: “we fully intend to meet our contractual obligations for long-term disposal of these materials…we are committed to finding a sustainable approach to assuring safe, secure long-term disposal of used nuclear fuel and nuclear waste.” He also noted that the panel’s final report wasn’t due until January 2012. Oh well! – then we are in good hands.  DO YOU REALLY THINK?  I DO NOT.

THE BLUE RIBBON COMMISSION ON AMERICA’S NUCLEAR FUTURE, issued a draft report 29 July 2011 that said the U.S. nuclear-waste disposal program had “all but broken down” and suggested a series of fixes. One recommendation was an overhaul of what it called the “dysfunctional Nuclear Waste Fund arrangement”, The Commission was formed last year by President Barack Obama, after the administration’s decision to halt the Yucca Mountain project. The Commission includes former elected officials from both major parties, along with academic experts and representatives of industry and labor.  One of its proposals was to cut the annual fees collected from utilities, to match the level of federal spending on the program. Uncollected funds would go into utility-run trust funds, to be tapped when needed for the waste project. That would put the project onto sounder fiscal footing, the panel said, but would add to the near-term federal deficit because some of the utility fees would not be counted as current revenue. Still, the panel draft report said, “the bill will come due at some point,” because the government is contractually bound to remove the spent fuel. SOUNDS LIKE: Lets muddy-up the water, and let the next administration handle it, after all it is now traditional!  Some government we have! – That is the reason we are in the shape we are.

OTHER LIABILITIES/EXPENSES FOR  NUKE OPERATORS Beyond disposal costs.   Taxpayers are also potentially liable for damages suffered by the public from a nuclear accident, including those stemming from the spent fuel stored at commercial power plant sites. Under a 1950s law, Nuke Plant operators currently must carry $375 million of liability insurance for each reactor, after which an industry insurance plan would take over, covering damages up to $12 billion. Any personal injury or property damages in excess of that would be borne by the Federal Government.  Shades of Fukushima, but the problem is always collecting damages.  Just ask them.

gonzedo

August 11, 2011 at 1:49 AM Comments (8)

MOX PRODUCTION PLANT CLOSES IN N.W. ENGLAND – WHY SHOULD WE CARE ? READ ON

07 Aug 2011

The MOX Nuclear Fuel Plant at Sellafield, located on the N.W. England coast (border with Ireland), was closed on 03 Aug 2011, with the loss of around 600 jobs. The closure is considered one more consequence of the Fukushimaa Dai No.1 Plant Tragedy last 13 Mar 2011.  Recall that to our consternation, Dai No.1,  Nuke, # 3 (of four). Is loaded with MOX, and that it has suffered a Melt-thru. Well…this is the plant that USED TO make Mixed Plutonium and Uranium Nuke fuel(MOX) . Normally, MOX consists of about 6 to 10% Plutonium(the world’s most toxic transuranic – Isotope) the remainder being Uranium oxide.

THE MOX PLANT ABOUT TO BE CLOSED  was formerly known as Windscale, and is a former electricity generating site, commissioned in 1990 to reprocess “spent nuclear fuel”; Currently, Sellafield holds 13 tons of Japanese plutonium oxide for treatment, and mixing with enriched Uranium, to create new Nuke fuel.  This process has been viewed as a partial solution to the disposal of Plutonium which is the worst and nastiest (longest lasting transuranic Isotope) by-product of the use of enriched Uranium in Nuke reactors.  Now, it may never be known if it could succeed in that purpose, because the Japanese Nuke Industry understandably, has lost interest in MOX for the foreseeable future;  Worse yet, Sellafield appears to have been entirely dependent upon orders from Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO), even to the point where Sellafield’s current MOX manufacturing works cannot be economically altered to handle the latest generation of nuclear reactors in planning.

These days the MOX plant is known as the “West Cumbrian Mixed-Oxide(hence MOX) Fuel Plant”.  Allow me to tell you why.  Cumbria is England’s most N.W. County, and only came into existence in 1974,  Today it consists of six(6) districts and its County Head is Carlisle. In 2008 Cumbria had a population of just under half a million, and consists mainly of beautiful agricultural land. (sort of like Fukushima – Energy Barons love to pee on beautiful green land!).  Most people would say MOX What? – But then, most people don’t really care, and besides some things are best hid from the tax paying public;  So, understandably the people of Cumbria have adopted a “don’t ask – don’t tell policy”   FRANKLY, I HAD NEVER HEARD OF EITHER CUMBRIA, OR SELLAFIELD BEFORE – HAD YOU? )

HERE IS THE RUB, The Plant is owned and operated by the British Government-owned  “Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA)” It was created at a cost to taxpayers £1.4bn since it was commissioned in the early 1990s;  Subsequently the plant , was set up to produce (MOX) fuel for use in nuclear power plants, with its chief customers the Japanese nuclear industry, and TEPCO. The plant was built in 1996 and became operational in 2001. So as a business expediency, the Decommissioning Agency became a “ MOX Commissioning Agency (now NCA ? – of course not)

The NDA denied there were any repercussions for the troubled Thorp Reprocessing Plant, although Thorp is also involved in generating MOX fuel, also made from a mixture of plutonium and uranium.  Another question is whether the Cumbria closure will prompt NDA to close the troubled Thorp reprocessing plant as well. The NDA denied that it was considering closing Thorp, and said the two cases were “unrelated” and that the business case for Thorp, which produces plutonium from other nuclear waste, continued to be strong;  However, the Thorp plant was constructed on the same premise as the Sellafield MOX plant(make it, and sell it to the Japanese).  Not likely now, is It ?

Tony Fountain, CEO of the NDA, (remember this is a government agency CEO speaking)told workers on 03 Aug 2011 morning: “The reason for this closure is directly related to the tragic events in Japan following the tsunami and its ongoing impact on the power markets. As a consequence we no longer have a customer for this facility, or (government)funding…the Plant has had many years of disappointing performance”.  Fountain added that the MOX plant has been funded in recent years by the taxpayer.  Its production had been the committed  to Japanese utilities to reusing nuclear fuel, and their support for the UK as a “centre of excellence”. But with the crisis in the Japanese nuclear industry, that route is no longer viable…The Hamaoka plant, owned by Chubu Electric, the intended recipient of the first fuel is closed, awaiting extensive reinforcement work.  Following Chubu, TEPCO were destined to take 50% of the MOX plant output; However their Fukushima Dai No.1 plant, is clearly facing the most extreme challenges.”  In a comforting note, Sellafield employees at the plant were told that there was “considerable scope”… for them to be re-employed in other parts of the Sellafield complex, and that it will take several months for the plant to close fully.

The NDA (CEO Fountain ?) said: “We have concluded that in order to ensure that the UK (I think he means British) taxpayer does not carry a future financial burden from the Sellafield MOX plant, the only reasonable course of action is to close the plant at the earliest practical opportunity…NDA will continue to store Japanese plutonium safely, and further develop discussions with the Japanese customers on a responsible approach to support the Japanese Nuke utilities’ policy for the reuse of their material”.

ENGLISH LABOUR MEMBER OF PARLIAMENT (MP) Jamie Reed, whose Copeland constituency includes Sellafield, see the Plant closure quite differently.  He has called on the government to lay out details of a potential plan to build a new MOX plant at the site, and said: “It is now absolutely essential that the new MOX plant is brought forward as quickly as possible. The market for MOX fuel exists and is growing, our plutonium disposition strategy relies upon such a facility and the industry requires it…gleeful vultures would seize upon the decision to close the plant and argue against the ‘critical national need’ for new MOX plant”.  HOPE SPRINGS ETERNAL! – SPECIALLY AMONG IGNORANT POLITICIANS.

GREENPEACE AND FRIENDS OF THE EARTH  Director Craig Bennett said: The move showed nuclear power did not make economic sense…Yet again taxpayers are footing the bill for the “Alice in Wonderland economics” of the nuclear industry (THAT IS TELLING IT LIKE IT IS!) This money ( the £1.4 Bn) could have been spent developing the UK’s vast renewable energy potential, creating new green jobs and business opportunities. This announcement will be a tremendous blow to the (600) people that work at the plant – we hope their expertise can be redeployed to help safeguard us all from the nuclear industry’s existing legacy of radioactive waste.”

BRITISH BIG BROTHER SAYS:  “The plant closing had no implications for the UK’s plans for new nuclear reactors”.  SEE THERE – BUSINESS AS USUAL- I THINK THE SPOKESPERSON IS WRONG,  AND “WHISTLING PAST THE CEMETERY“… Any such new nuclear power plants under consideration would not be the kind that could use MOX as a fuel because that would elevate building costs; so he says.

MY TAKE

The signs are evident worldwide that the Uranium Cartel, as we have known it, has lost public support and its primacy; This, is in no small part due to the on-going Fukushima Tragedy.  This story is one more sign of the support erosion even in Nuke supporting government circles like the U.K. and France.  Meanwhile the Uranium Cartel Press agents are going full tilt telling the world more blatant lies and wishful aspirations for their future, making believe everything is still fine.  IT IS NOT!

Do you ever ponder why we never hear the details behind the News?  I they wanted us to know, they would report it.  WE TELL IT, LIKE IT IS.

THIS IS AN IMPORTANT STORY BECAUSE ONCE AGAIN IT DEMONSTRATES THAT THE ACHILLES HEEL OF THE URANIUM NUKE INDUSTRY IS: HOW TO DISPOSE OF ALL THE PERSISTENT POISONS THEY PRODUCE.  IF THEY KNEW HOW, THEY WOULD.

gonzedo

August 7, 2011 at 1:04 AM Comment (1)

JAPANESE GOVT PLANS TO REPLACE THREE FAILED NUCLEAR POLICY MINISTERS – MAYBE

03 Aug 2011

Reuters reported on 03 Aug 2011 that Japan sacked three(3) senior bureaucrats in charge of nuclear power policy, holding them to account for a series of scandals which have broken out in recent weeks over the government’s cozy relationship with the power industry, and their mishandling of the ongoing Fukushima Tragedy.

Japanese Trade Minister Banri Kaieda, who oversees energy policy, said he “PLANS TO REPLACE three senior officials” in the ministry following the crisis at the Fukushima power plant, the world’s worst nuclear disaster in 25 years. The three officials are (1)Kazuo Matsunaga, the top bureaucrat at the trade ministry, (2)Nobuaki Terasaka, head of the Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency, and (3)Tetsuhiro Hosono, head of the Agency for Natural Resources and Energy.

Trade Minister Kaieda said: “I’m planning to breathe fresh air into the ministry with a large-scale reshuffle…This is what I’ve been thinking for about a month. I’ll have new people rebuild the ministry.”  Kaieda played a key role in THE MIS-handling OF the Fukushima crisis, and has said he intends to step down to take responsibility for missteps, vowed to carry out major personnel changes in his Ministry’s personnel,  but DID NOT SAY WHEN, OR EVEN WHEN HE WILL RETIRE. The Asahi reported that after sacking the three officials, Kaieda himself intended to quit as soon as possible. Last month, he broke down in tears at a parliamentary hearing after being hounded by an opposition lawmaker about the timing of his resignation.  BUT HE DID NOT SAY WHEN!

Japanese Prime Minister(P.M.) Naoto Kan who has advocated gradually withdrawing Japan from its dependence on nuclear power, HAS EXPRESSED GROWING DISTRUST toward Kaieda’s Trade Ministry, who has even promoted atomic energy.  P.M.  Kan himself is highly unpopular, and has been fighting calls from his own party to step down; However, he was instrumental in the decision to fire the three(3) officials, per the Asahi Shimbun. The Government also PLANS TO form a new, more independent atomic safety regulator by separating it from the Trade Ministry, MAKING TOUGHER STANDARDS LIKELY. Hmm! Where have we heard that before? (our own NRC perhaps?) Just talk; that, is all ! IN SHORT, THEY PLAN A LOT, AND ACCOMPLISH MUCH LESS.

For the complete, contradictory and ambivalent story see:  (Reuters – no less!)

http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/08/04/us-japan-nuclear-idUSTRE77212020110804

MY TAKE:

When covering Japanese politics, Even Reuters has difficulty in telling the difference between PLANS and ACTUAL ACTION. – PROBLEM APPEARS TO BE that Japanese Politicians are so obsessed with “Saving Face”, that they seldom “Tell it like It is”.  Despite its headline, this article is not about “sacking” three politicians, but rather about “Plans to replace”.  Every negative comment made by politicians in Japan, is intended to shame other politicians into resignation, rather than to oust them.

UNFORTUNATELY, in Japan, and everywhere else it seems, Politicians are “case hardened” against negative comments;  Especially so, when they have “cozy arrangements” to comply with.  The same comments may be made of P.M. Naoto Kahn and Trade Minister Banri Kaieda, who are so sorry that they actually cry, but DO NOT RESIGN.  We do things very differently in the United States.  Here the Energy Barons always get their way, but they never cry – except all the way to the bank!  NO REASON TO BRAG, OR TO FEEL SUPERIOR, WE ARE NOT!  We are just different !

gonzedo

 

August 3, 2011 at 11:57 PM Comment (1)

WHEN IT RAINS IT POURS! EVEN IN JAPAN (SADLY – SELDOM IN TEXAS)

30 Jul 2011

TORRENTIAL RAINS FORCE EVACUATIONS IN Japan’s N.E. Niigata and Fukushima Prefectures. About 9,000 people have evacuated out of some 400,000, who were asked to do so. Several spots of the two prefectures have seen rainfall exceeding 25 inches since last Wednesday, causing floods and landslides with significant loss of life and property. Two people have been killed, and five others are missing.

IN NIIGATA PREFECTURE The Igarashi River in Sanjo flooded, leading local authorities to evacuate 10,000 residents nearby.  A total of about 184,000 people(in some 59,000 households in seven cities and one town) were advised to evacuate.   Some were evacuated to enable work to discharge water that overflowed two(2) dams in the city of Sanjo. Evacuation directives were also issued to some 1,200 others(in about 300 households).  Prefecture Officials asked the Ground Self-Defense Force to dispatch troops to help rescue residents who are missing or stranded due to mudslides and other water-related disasters.

IN FUKUSHIMA PREFECTURE the towns of Tadami, and Mishama issued an evacuation advisory to all of its residents.  About 4,800 people in some 1,800 households are homeless.

No one in government is talking about what role the flooding will have on spreading the radiation on the ground.  NO, IT WILL NOT WASH IT AWAY, IT WILL JUST MIGRATE  ELSEWHERE DOWNSTREAM, OR INTO THE SEA.

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ANOTHER STRONG QUAKE  JOLTS FUKUSHIMA PREFECTURE early 31 Jul 2011; in the same region that was devastated by a massive 9.0 earthquake and ensuing tsunami earlier this year. The U.S. Geological Survey(USGS) says the quake had a 6.4 Richter magnitude (that makes three(3) such 6.4 quakes in succession ).  The quake epicenter was at a depth of about 43 kilometers in the Pacific Ocean, near the east coast of Japan’s Honshu island, 185 kilometers N.E. of Tokyo. There were no reports of injuries or damage from the quake, and no tsunami warning was issued.

NO NEW DAMAGE – Tokyo Electric Power Co (TEPCO) said the latest tremor did not cause any new damage to the fatally damaged Dai No.1 plant.  MY CONCERN ABOUT FOLLOW-ON QUAKES CONTINUES TO BE THAT THE “SPENT-FUEL-POOL” LOCATED ON TOP of Nuke no 4 (already leaning to the outside of the building ), could topple creating the world’s first uncontrolled dumping (for want of a new term) on the grounds of  SEVERAL NUKE LOADS OF “TRANSURANICS”- EXTREMELY PERSISTENT Isotopes of all kinds. (Truly mean stuff).  THERE IS (to my knowledge)NO EXISTING TECHNOLOGY TO HANDLE SUCH A CALAMITY.   

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THEFT OF ABANDONED HOMES IN “NO -GO” ZONE A REAL PROBLEM. Prefecture and Municipal governments in Fukushima Prefecture are demanding compensation for victims of burglaries committed in the no-entry zone around the Fukushima Dai No.1 nuclear power plant.  Since the nuclear accident, there have been more burglaries in about two months, than in the whole of last year. Residents have confirmed losses from burglaries during short visits back home. According to Prefectural Police(PPs – tongue-in-cheek), as of 28 Jul 2011, there were 376 REPORTS OF BURGLARIES, involving property worth a total of about  $200,000.  Residents reason that since TEPCO caused the evacuation, they are liable…HMM!! It will be very hard to make that stick.  FOLKS, ADVICE FROM TEXAS:  Do not get lawyers involved!  Only they will get anything!  Here, there, and everywhere.

Hideki Ishibashi, an Associate Professor of Civil law at “Ritsumeikan University’s College of Law”, and an expert in compensation matters, said: “Because there was action committed by third parties, namely the thieves, the link of responsibility is broken”. SORRY ABOUT THAT!  WHAT IS SAD TO CONTEMPLATE IS HOW THIN THE VENEER OF HONESTY SOME CITIZENS EXHIBIT IN DIFFICULT/TRYING TIMES.  If this can happen in Japan, it can happen worse elsewhere. Remember New Orleans after Katrina? No one likes to -now!

P.S. We have received many “ SPAM COMMENTS” covertly seeking free advertisement for their stuff, or selling software to make me rich.  DON’T WASTE YOUR TIME, I AM NOT IN THIS FOR PROFIT!

gonzedo

July 30, 2011 at 10:29 PM Comments (0)

FUKUSHIMA PREFECTURE QUESTIONNAIRES – JUST A USELESS NEEDLESS IMPOSITION

26 Jul 2011

FUKUSHIMA PREFECTURE (STATE) is worried about health problems stemming from radiation leaked from the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant.  Such worries have been exacerbated by the finding of “hot-spots” in Fukushima City (some 60 Km from the plant). So, the Fukushima State government has decided to carry out health checks on all of the about 2 million residents in the State. PROBLEM IS: LENGTHY QUESTIONNAIRES – WHAT GOOD ARE THEY?

“DO I HAVE TO WRITE-IN SO MUCH DETAIL ?” asked Mrs. Makiko Kowata, 37 who has been taking shelter in the City of Fukushima after evacuating from Namiemachi (located within the no-go zone around the crippled nuclear power plant).  She was unpleasantly surprised when she saw the questionnaire from the State government in mid-July. External radiation exposure is estimated based on data about radiation in the air and a person’s activities. Kowata has been asked to write a MINUTE-BY-MINUTE ACCOUNT about what she did for the two(2) weeks after the disaster. She is also asked to write the amount of vegetables, fruits and milk she consumed through the end of March 2011;  However, since the disaster, Kowata has moved many times from evacuation centers in and outside the prefecture to her relatives’ and acquaintances’ houses with her 37-year-old husband and their three daughters.  She said the health check may be necessary for children;  But, as for me: “I don’t remember what I did four(4) months ago. If the government planned to conduct this research, it should’ve told us earlier. Then I would/could have recorded what I ate, and where I went…I wonder if precise radiation exposure can be estimated through this kind of questionnaire” – She ponders angrily.

ANOTHER FUKUSHIMA STATE RESIDENT Mr. Katsuaki Honda, 66, who lives in the Watarimatsuho district in Fukushima State, measured radiation levels in his yard using a dosimeter that his community association had purchased. The result was between 3.2 and 3.5 (mS) per hour – close to the outdoor activity restriction limit of 3.8 mS. Thinking it was a problem, he removed the grass from his lawn with a hoe. His grandchildren, aged 3 and 5, who live in the neighborhood, have not visited his house to play due to radiation fears;  Now, Honda says with a sadly bitter smile: “The other day, I met them at a restaurant and we were able to eat together,”

The State government also plans to closely monitor internal radiation levels taken in through food, targeting about 200,000 people from evacuation areas; However, it is likely that very little radioactive material will be detected, according to experts.  In addition to the fact that ingested radioactive material is carried out of the body in urine, radioactive iodine has a half-life of just eight days.  FOLKS, ALL THESE STATISTICAL IMPOSITIONS SEEM LIKE “MAKE-WORK” MEASURES THAT WILL HELP NO-ONE, AND BURDEN ANALYSTS FOR YEAR TO COME.  IT IS CLEAR THE EFFORT IS NOT BEING RUN BY SCIENTISTS, BUT BY BUREAUCRATS.  PUT PLAINLY, IT IS NOW TOO LATE TO HELP MANY CITIZENS, AND QUESTIONNAIRES ARE A WASTE OF TIME, AND A VIOLATION OF PRIVACY RIGHTS.

Makoto Akashi, Executive Director of Japan’s “National Institute of Radiological Sciences”, said: “I don’t think radioactive iodine will be detected. It’s likely that State residents were not exposed to high levels of radiation, but I don’t think it’s possible to make a precise estimate of their radiation exposure.” Some experts have questioned whether exact radiation exposure can ever be tested four(4) months after height of the radioactive spew.  Thanks to The Yomiuri Shimbun for quotations,  26 Jul 2011.

MEANWHILE THE CITY(Municipality )OF FUKUSHIMA tried on 24 Jul 2011(Sunday) to remove radioactive materials from school routes, and other locations in a the Watari District believed ( don’t they know?) to be a “hot spot” , by mobilizing some 400 experts and 3500 residents in the effort. Although Fukushima City, the State Capital, is about 60 km from the stricken Fukushima Dai No.1 nuclear power plant, its Watari district showed higher radiation levels than elsewhere in the city in a survey in Jun 2011.  A specialized cleaning vehicle (Mechanized broom?) brushed around 1.5 km of roads on routes; especially those used by children to commute to school, while residents removed soil and weeds from and around ditches.  With over 300 “experts” on hand, one hopes all necessary safety measures were observed, to preserve the workers health. If the effort proves successful, it could be applied to other local areas.  Now, the city plans to monitor radiation in the district after several days, to gauge the result of their decontamination effort.

DETAILS ON THE CLEANUP ARE SCANT; HOWEVER, WHILE WE APPLAUD THE CITIZEN’S SELF-SACRIFICE AND EFFORT (IN THE ABSENCE OF CENTRAL GOVERNMENT GUIDANCE)WE REGRET TO SAY CONTAMINATED SOIL IS NOT LIKE SNOW.  It will not melt or go away for perhaps thousands of years.  ENSURING THE REMOVED SOIL IS PLACED IN REMOTE, IMPERMEABLY-LINED PITS, TO PREVENT LEACHING INTO ADJACENT WATER; THEN, COVERED-UP TO PREVENT RAIN FROM ACCELERATING THE PROCESS IS A NECESSITY. 

“A WHOLE LOT OF SHAKING GOING ON”  Late Singer Jerry Lee Lewis never imagined such events: On 23 Jul 2011(Saturday afternoon), a magnitude 6.4 quake struck off the east coast of Honshu; Then, on 25 Jul 2011(Monday 03:51) a magnitude 6.2 quake struck, also with an epicenter 282 km northeast of Tokyo at a depth of 35.6km in the Pacific Ocean, 94km east of Fukushima State.  Both quakes were felt in Tokyo, but no losses or casualties reported.

NATURE TOO IS RATCHETING UP FEARS. Last week two magnitude 5+ quakes were felt.  This week, both earthquakes were in the magnitude 6.2 Richter class.  It is amazing no losses were reported.  Quakes such as this could have had disastrous effects on other parts of the world.  It is no wonder Japan’s suicide rate is significantly higher.

gonzedo

July 26, 2011 at 9:09 AM Comments (10)

NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION (NRC) ALSO SPLIT ALONG PARTY LINES

22 Jul 2011

WASHINGTON – Despite calls by Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) Chairman Gregory B. Jaczko for swift action,  three(3) of the five (5) NRC Commissioners  have given notice that they wish to move(MORE) slowly on at least some new recommendations from its staff, on how to reduce the chance of a Fukushima-type accident at an American Nuke.  The recommendations, were issued last week, by a team of six(6) senior NRC staff members. Mr. Jaczko said that since the task force had completed its evaluation in 90 days, the Commissioners should be able to decide within a similar time frame what changes to make in safety regulations, although the reforms themselves would take longer. (MAKE NECESSARY CHANGES TO SAFETY REGULATIONS ASAP). 

This is not the first indication of conflict of interests (OH – YES! THIS IS ABOUT NOT SPENDING MONEY)within the NRC. After an inquiry, the Commission’s Inspector General reported last month that some staff members were troubled by Mr. Jaczko’s “aggressive management style” and by his decision to halt the staff’s work on Energy.  SEE THERE , JACZKO IS A MEAN DUDE! – COME ON YE WHINING HYPOCRITES!

On 20 Jul 2100 (Wednesday), a day after the task force briefed the commissioners on the post-Fukushima report, Commissioner, William D. Magwood IV, posted a statement at the commission’s Web site asserting that the task force had worked “without the benefit of the full analytical resources of the agency.” Given its 90-day mandate, “it was not possible to give all issues the consideration they deserve,” he wrote. (LET ME DRAG MY FEET ! – IT REDUCES THE ITCH).

Another NRC Commissioner, Kristine L. Svinicki, also posted a statement that said: “I do not have a sufficient basis to accept or reject the recommendations of the Near-Term Task Force…the agency should proceed with the systematic and methodical review of lessons learned.” A VERY IRRESOLUTE COMMENT – GIVE ME MORE PROOF! (THERE IS NOT SUFFICIENT PROOF IN THE WORLD FOR IRRESOLUTE PERSONS – THEY AVOID RESPONSIBILITY AS THE PLAGUE). Both commissioners noted that the task force had found no imminent threat to public health and safety from continued operation of the nation’s 104 power reactors, or from extending their licenses.

A third Commissioner, William C. Ostendorff,  said at the 19 Jul 2011 meeting:  I personally do not believe that our existing regulatory framework is broken.” (IF IT AIN’T BROKE- DON’T FIX IT).  See there, no problem!

The NRC Task Force recommended some specific improvements (see par. below),  and some sweeping reforms, like integrating decades of regulations and informal changes in operating practices into a single framework that systematically addresses the full range of safety risks. For example, some equipment stored at nuclear reactors in response to the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks such as portable pumps, hoses, extra batteries and extra sources of energy protected from flooding, and the periodic inspection of all such contingency items to ensure reliability.  Currently, such items are not regularly tested, the task force found.  ALL OF THE ABOVE MAKE GOOD SENSE TO THOSE LOOKING TO IMPROVE PUBLIC SAFETY, BUT NOT TO THOSE WISHING TO MAINTAIN THE “STATUS-QUO” IN A BROKEN-DOWN FATALLY-FLAWED INDUSTRY, FOR A LONGER TIME. 

THE STUDY RECOMMENDED: (1)periodic re-evaluation of earthquake risk as an understanding of geology evolves, and (2)rethinking the design of vents that have been added to some reactors to control excess pressures and get rid of hydrogen, to prevent a repeat of the Fukushima disastrous events of 11 Mar 2011.  Similar vents to those at Fukushima exist at reactors of the same type in the U.S.  NATURALLY, the nuclear industry argues that not enough is known about the vents at Fukushima or the recent sequence of events there to justify changes in the United States.  NO LESSONS LEARNED – EVEN ON THIS ONE EASY TO VERIFY ENGINEERING  ISSUE.

USA Rep. EDWARD J. MARKEY (D-MASS) feels the issue of “how urgently to move” is acquiring a partisan character. On 20 Jul 2011 (Wednesday), Markey, a longtime critic of nuclear safety regulation, said that Commissioners Svinicky, and Magwood; who posted comments, “want to direct the NRC staff to endlessly study the NRC staff’s own report before they will even consider a single recommendation made by the very same NRC staff…We do not need another study to study the NRC staff’s study,” he said in a statement.

On 18Jul 2011(Monday) the Republican leaders of the House Energy and Commerce Committee took the opposite tack. After reviewing the task force’s report, they urged Mr. Jaczko in a letter to proceed slowly.  “We believe it is essential that the Commission have the benefit of the full and deliberate process of review, in accordance with established commission procedures, its principles of good regulation and statutory requirements.”

Thanks to N.Y. Times for quotes, 21 Jul 2011

OUR TAKE:

This article(Post) is a sequel to: NRC TASK FORCE 90-DAY REPORT / GUIDELINES FOR US NUKE INDUSTRY DUE SOON  Dated 14 July 2011

The NRC must vote to move forward expeditiously with improving nuclear power plant safety for our Nation. Anything less would be abdicating its job of protecting public health and safety, IN THE INTEREST OF MONETARY INTERESTS; THE RUB IS: THE FINAL DISPOSITION OF “SPENT-FUEL”, WHICH IS FAR MORE TOXIC THAN THE URANIUM THAT GOES INTO NUKES, CONTINUES TO BE THE ACHILLES HEEL OF THAT GIGANTIC INDUSTRY/CARTEL

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28 Jul 2011  UPDATE : Representative Edward Markey (D-Mass), said in a statement today that  Commissioners Magwood, Ostendorff and Svinicki “have done this country a tremendous disservice in their collective votes to ensure that the NRC will not lead efforts to ensure the safety of the nuclear industry sector”.  As the old saying goes: “YOU CAN LEAD A HORSE TO WATER BUT YOU CAN’T MAKE HIM DRINK”.   

We must point out that it was precisely such “Penny wise, and Pound foolish” attitude by colluding Japanese politicians, and “for profit” Nuclear Industrialists that led to the Fukushima Dai No. 1 Tragedy.  Such actions point clearly to corruption in high places, in the U.S. as well.

HERE WE THOUGHT WE WERE PROTECTED BY THE NRC, BUT IT TURNS OUT IT IS JUST JUST ONE MORE GOVERNMENTAL “PAPER TIGER”.  NOT GOOD NEWS AT ALL!!. CHANGES ARE NEEDED IN GOVERNMENT COMMISSIONS NOW!

gonzedo

July 22, 2011 at 4:28 PM Comments (0)

JAPAN’S GOVERNMENT STILL “FROZEN INTO INACTION” ABOUT CONTAMINATED FOOD

17 Jul 2011.

The NY Times reports that the Second-biggest retailer in Japan” AEON, admitted on 17 Jul 2011 (Sunday) that it had sold beef from cattle that ate (“WAS FED” – IS MORE LIKELY) cesium contaminated feed. Aeon said it had sold the contaminated beef at a store in Tokyo, and at more than a dozen stores in the surrounding area. The Health, Labor and Welfare Ministry said that 136 cattle are so far known to have been fed contaminated rice straw, and sold.  They do not say if they found their AEON beef tasty!  Do You think?  Remember: “IT DOES NOT COOK-OUT EITHER”

AEON IS JAPAN’S NO.2 FOOD RETAILER, and trails only “Seven & I” Holdings in the retail sector, confessed it had sold 319 kilograms, (703) pounds, of the tainted beef from April 27 to June 20 at one shop in Tokyo, and at other shops in Kanagawa and Chiba. Aeon also admitted having sold the contaminated beef at outlets in Shizuoka and Ishikawa, in central Japan.  BOY HOWDY! – THOSE 700 LBS OF BEEF SURE WENT A LONG WAY!  AEON added that it would start to check beef shipments from all areas that could be contaminated.  Yeah! Now hey will check, but where is the Japanese equivalent of the American Food and Drug Administration (FDA) inspectors?  WHY NO FOOD SAFETY WATCHDOGS IN JAPAN?  IF THEY ENTRUST THEIR LIFE TO THE LEGENDARY BASIC HONESTY OF THEIR PEOPLE, I FEAR FOR THEIR “LOSS OF INNOCENCE”, OR WORSE.  

GOSHNI HOSONO “TALKS THE TALK, BUT DOES NOT WALK THE WALK”  Hosono the “Central Cabinet Minister responsible for coordinating the nuclear cleanup”, said on a Television Program Sunday, that the government was “now likely” to ban shipments of beef from around Fukushima;  He added: “The most likely outcome is that we will ban beef shipments…We are discussing the matter along these lines. We have to ensure food safety.”  WE KNOW FROM PAST EXPERIENCE WITH MR. HOSONO’s REMARKS, THAT HE IS AT BEST IRRESOLUTE, AND AT WORST  CRIMINALLY REMISS IN HIS DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES. He should be replaced ASAP for the good of Japan.

BEEF CONTAMINATED WITH CESIUM (deadly stuff) levels three(3) to six(6) times higher than safety standards, was found last week in beef cattle shipped to Tokyo from a rancher in the city of Minamisoma (near the Fukushima Dai No.1 Nuke power plant). Agriculture ministry officials have said that consuming such meat “a few times” poses no immediate health risks.  Y’OU-MAMA! THAT MINISTER IS EITHER NAÏVE, OR COVERING-UP ILLICIT BEEF-SALES OPERATIONS.  CONSIDER THIS:  RETAILER AEON ADMITS SELLING 703 LBS OF SUCH BEEF- THAT IS LESS THAN ONE CARCASS.  PROBLEM IS: OVER 136 HEAD OF BEEF CATTLE WERE REPORTED SOLD.

UPDATE – 18 Jul 2011 , The Wall Street Journal reports that Fukushima Prefecture government said Monday that 411 more beef cattle (steers) potentially contaminated with radioactive cesium have been shipped around Japan. A development sure to fuel food-safety fear. Today’s announcement said the rice-straw feed tested  at more than 500 times the government’s safety limit. This after weeks of reassurance from the government that measures are in place to ensure food from the region near the stricken Fukushima Dai No. 1 nuclear reactor is safe, sudden rise in both the number of cattle fed contaminated rice-straw, and the very high levels of cesium in the straw will exacerbate concerns over food safety, and the government’s evident NO GIVE A DAMN! attitude.  The spread of potentially contaminated beef around the nation, and to some of its best-known stores, will/should surely intensify pressure on the government to ban all cattle shipments from Fukushima, and even neighboring prefectures.  THE QUESION IS :  WHY ARE STORE OPERATORS, OR THE GOVERNMENT, NOT CHECKING THE BEEF ON THEIR COUNTERS WITH A VIEW TO REMOVE IT?  AS IF WE DID NOT KNOW THE ANSWER!  TRULY SAD DEVELOPMENTS .

20 Jul 2011 – UPDATE, Reuters reports that just after Tokyo ordered the suspension of all beef cattle shipments from Fukushima prefecture after discovering that cattle fed rice-straw contaminated with high levels of radioactive cesium, that an additional 735 cattle had been shipped nationwide.  Now a total of 1,235 contaminated cattle have been reported shipped from Fukushima, and seven(7) other prefectures, to other parts of Japan;  That is up from the 500 heads reported only yesterday.  ONCE AGAIN “BIG BROTHER” DID “TOO LITTLE TOO LATE”.  JAPAN’S CENTRAL GOVERNMENT LITERALY CLOSED THE GATES AFTER THE CATTLE WAS GONE!.. BEWARE !  THERE MAY  SOON BE A ” HOT-BEEF SALE” ALL OVER JAPAN.  Eat it at your own peril.  “BIG-BROTHER” WHERE ART THOU! 

NEARLY ALL FOOD AND WATER CONTAMINATED TO SOME EXTENT coming from areas near Dai No 1. Nukes, have been halted because of high radiation levels. Crates of contaminated vegetables, tea, milk, seafood, and water have already stoked anxiety in Japan, despite assurances from officials that the levels are not dangerous.

SEAFOOD ALSO FOUND TO BE TAINTED in tiny Kounago village.  Fish in waters near Fukushima were found to contain cesium at levels above safety limits (not surprisingly so), stoking worries about seafood in a country where sushi and sashimi(raw sea-fish) are eaten widely.

Folks, lets keep hoping for the best, and planning for the worst.  The real trials and tribulations of the Japanese people are just beginning.

Respectfully,

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09 Aug 2011 UPDATE – RADIOACTIVE FISH CONFIRMED IN JAPAN

GREENPEACE SAID the government must work quickly to ensure the safety of consumers, including measures to trace the origin of such products. Wakao Hanaoka, the oceans campaigner for Greenpeace Japan, said: “We have requested the Fisheries Agency, and the Consumer Affairs Agency, to label each fish with its origin as well as the level of radiation contamination…Under the current circumstances, consumers cannot purchase (fish) with complete knowledge that it is safe”.  Hanaoka also revealed that Greenpeace has requested major retailers in Japan to take part in providing safe fish, possibly through establishing their own screening system for radiation and providing accurate data of the product to consumers. Allowing only safe fish to hit the market will ultimately be the key to reviving Fukushima’s fisheries.  HE IS REALLY SAYING: DO THIS OR YOUR FISHERIES INDUSTRY WILL DIE.

THE RUB IS: BEEF IS “ORIGIN-TAGGED”; WHILE FISH IS NOT The farm ministry tags every cow with a 10-digit identification number that consumers can use to trace where the beef they purchase came from; However, a similar system for fish hasn’t been set up yet. ”

FRENCH LABS CONFIRMED that Samples of fish were obtained between July 22 and 24 2011,  and examined at laboratories certified by the French nuclear authority, Greenpeace said.

gonzedo

 

July 17, 2011 at 8:10 PM Comments (10)

JAPAN’S CENTRAL GOVT. SEEMS “FROZEN INTO INACTION” IN THE FACE OF THE ENEMY

16 Jul 2011

WHAT’S THE “BEEF” ??(American expresion for: what is the complaint?).  More than four(4) months after the Fukushima Tragedy, Japan’s Central Government has not yet set-up a system to check food for radiation; Instead, they “Pass the Buck” to testing carried out by Prefectures and Municipalities. The Tokyo Metropolitan Government said that one beef sample tested at 650 becquerels(Bq) per kilogram (kg), exceeding the maximum limit of 500 Bq per kg. The radioactive Isotope Cesium was found in large quantity in the hay-feed given to the cattle.  Cesium has an affinity for calcium, hence it goes for the bones; and there, begins to change the human DNA to produce cancers of several sorts. NOT A GOOD THING!  YOU CAN’T SEE IT, YOU CAN’T SMELL IT… AND YOU CAN’T COOK IT OUT EITHER!

A THIRD SHIPMENT OF RADIOACTIVE BEEF has been reported since last weekend, unfortunately, officials believe much of it has already been consumed. It is as though the Central Government has abdicated its responsibilities to Japan as a whole. IN THE LATEST SUCH INCIDENT, A cattle farm in the town of Minamisoma (just outside the 20 kilometer no-go zone placed around the Fukushima nuclear plant), was found to have shipped meat from cows fed with straw containing 75,000 Bq of cesium per kg.

WORSE YET, The Central government has sought to assure the public that there is no immediate health threat from eating “standard servings” of the beef.  Those who say so, are either “lying through their teeth” to protect their nonchalance, or incredibly ignorant;  SO, THEY DO NOTHING! to protect the people of Japan. AS WE SAY IN TEXAS: WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO DO NOW, COWBOY!  For now, officials are also calling it an isolated incident, while vowing to increase inspections of food in wake of the country’s nuclear crisis.  WE’LL SEE!

RADIATION DOSIMETERS (GEIGER COUNTERS) ARE A “HOT” COMMODITY.  Not surprisingly: “It was a wave of panic buying,” Huang said…it was absolutely a seller’s market,” with some manufacturers selling out a year’s worth of inventory in a week through March and April.. we have since restocked supplies”;  PROBLEM IS: Most of the dosimeters on the market now are questionably accurate, and tend to break-own often. Contaminated products including spinach, mushrooms, bamboo shoots, tea, milk, plums beef, and fish with cesium-137, and iodine radioactive Isotopes as far as 360 kilometers from Fukushima Dai No. 1 Nuclear station. Unfortunately, it is clear radioactivity has entered the food chain over much of the Japanese mainland.

FORTUNATELY, Japan’s “Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology” has handed out 1,700 dosimeters made by Tokyo-based Fuji Electric Co. to kindergartens, elementary and middle schools since April.  We say fortunately because dosimeters are not inexpensive: somewhere betweent $200 and $800 ea.  Japanese people prefer those made elsewhere in the world: “The Russian and Ukrainian-made dosimeters sell out in a flash.”

MEANWHILE AT FUKUSHIMA DAI NO.1, Nuke plant, 15 Jul 2011  The Asahi Shimbun newspaper reports that a contaminated water filtration system was temporarily shut-down after a pipe junction snapped. About 1.3 gallons of radioactive water leaked following the break last 13 Jul 2011(Wednesday). TEPCO said repairing the break will require human intervention, but the high radiation levels of 100-150 millisieverts per hour in the surrounding area make it very difficult to get to the system and, it was unclear when the repairs would be completed.  This is bad news!

One has to feel compassion for the Japanese people these days. A weak, in-cohesive, irresolute Central government, contaminated food, soil, and water(in some areas).  Even Mother Nature continues to “rattle” the country with 5+ magnitude quakes all too frequently still.  It is no wonder there are reports of many young women and children leaving Japan to go to Okinawa. Fortunately for those folks, they are very welcome there, although for how long that will continue remains to be seen.  In most such cases, the husbands found it necessary to remain in Japan to earn a living,  thus adding  family separation to their daily stresses.

Gonzedo 

July 16, 2011 at 1:50 AM Comments (11)

NRC TASK FORCE 90-DAY REPORT / GUIDELINES FOR US NUKE INDUSTRY DUE SOON

14 July 2011

The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is(SUPPOSED TO BE) the U.S. nuclear industry’s “top cop”.  Their immediate task is to weigh major changes in how it regulates the country’s 104 reactors using the Fukushima Tragedy as a “Lessons-Learned” frame of reference.  The task force’s recommendations will be considered in a formal hearing on 19 Jul 2011, and will be part of a longer-term review.

THE TASK FORCE (APPOINTED BY THE NRC) praised new reactor designs(none exist yet)  that include “passive cooling” features, saying the new designs would be in line with many of its recommendations. Accordingly, It urged the NRC to complete its review “without delay” of Toshiba-Shaw’s Westinghouse AP1000 reactor and GE-Hitachi’s Economic Simplified Boiling Water Reactor(ESBWR).  The AP1000 is the reactor design of choice for the nation’s first new nuclear plants in 30 years: Southern in Georgia, and SCANA in South Carolina. Gregory Jackzo, NRC chairman said: “I am proud of the diligence and dedication of the Task Force, and look forward to working with my fellow commissioners to respond to these recommendations”.

THE NUCLEAR ENERGY INSTITUTE (NEI) IS A NUCLEAR INDUSTRY LOBBY that recognizes that applying the Task Force retro-fitting/modification recommendations would cost their industry $billions; so they appear to want to delay implementations of any recommendations at this time. They argue that the “longer-term review” now under way would incorporate more definitive information about the Fukushima disaster. Tony Pietrangelo, NEI Senior V.P. , and chief nuclear officer, said the Task Force’s 90 day report does not cite significant data from the Fukushima experience to support many of its recommendations: “Given the mammoth challenge it faced in gathering, and evaluating the still-incomplete information from Japan, the agency (NRC) should seek broader engagement with stakeholders on the task force report, to ensure that its decisions are made in the light of the best information possible,” – SOUNDS LIKE FOOT-DRAGGING! YOU KNOW! – PUT-OFF UNTIL TOMORROW, WHAT YOU DON’T  REALLY WANT TO DO.

THE UNION OF CONCERNED SCIENTISTS (UCS) expert nuclear watchdog said if anything, the NRC’s 90 -day review does not go far enough. UCS offered a list of 23 recommendations for making nuclear power (which it does not oppose) a safer means of generating electricity.  David Lochbaum, who worked in the US nuclear industry for 17 years, and is now a UCS expert said: “Japan’s reactor designs are similar, their protective barriers are similar, and their regulations are, in some cases, even stronger…If a U.S reactor were faced with a similar challenge, maybe not the exact combo of earthquake and tsunami, but some other natural disaster or human error, it’s unlikely that the story would have a happier ending…What the Task force did not address, is the need for the NRC to extend the scope of its regulations to include “severe,” or extreme, low-probability accidents. Instead, the agency’s regulations concentrate on design-basis accidents (those that US reactors must be designed to withstand).  The industry’s voluntary severe-accident GUIDELINES ARE NOT ENOUGH to protect the public, especially when a significant number of Nuke Operators do not pay attention to those guidelines”.  Among other things, Lochbaum wants the NRC to: (1)make the emergency planning zone around plants greater than 10 miles; (2)require plant owners to transfer “spent fuel” from storage pools to less-vulnerable “dry-casks” after five years; and (3)force owners of more than 40 reactors to comply fully with fire-protection regulations that the agency established decades ago.

NRC’s “TASK-FORCE” SAYS: NRC regulations on handling station blackouts need to be expanded and improved . At the Fukushima Dai No. 1, the tsunami wiped out backup power. It is vital to boost regulatory requirements – including so-called “coping capability” to exist safely without electrical power until such time a generators arrive, or outside power is restored. (THEY SEEM TO SUGGEST THE NEED FOR “PASSIVE COOLING”- SUCH AS ENVISIONED FOR THE “GEN III+ NUKES”. The Task Force concludes that revising and expanding the ‘coping capability’, to include measures for  cooling the “spent- fuel”, preventing a loss-of-coolant accident, and preventing a containment failure would be a significant benefit,” the Task Force report says.  WHAT IS NEW ABOUT THAT???-GET REAL!  JUST TELL THEM WHAT THEY NEED TO DO TO ENSURE OUR SAFETY. 

Now it is up to the five-member NRC to decide which ideas to accept, and how quickly to proceed in dealing with an industry where new safety plant retrofits/modifications can run into $ Billions. THE RUB ISTHE FINAL DISPOSITION OF “SPENT-FUEL”, WHICH IS FAR MORE TOXIC THAN THE URANIUM THAT GOES INTO NUKES, CONTINUES TO BE THE ACHILLES HEEL OF THAT GIGANTIC INDUSTRY/CARTEL.

Gonzedo

July 14, 2011 at 11:47 AM Comments (34)

CHINA TO SPEND MILLIONS ON THORIUM-FUELED NUKE RESEARCH / DEVELOPMENT

12 Jul 2011

CHINA FREEZES APPROVAL OF URANIUM-FUELED NUKES The public outcry following the problems at the Fukushima plant led to The Chinese government (Beijing) putting a freeze on approvals of new uranium-fueled Nukes, and to require additional safety checks at all 25 Uranium-fueled Nukes currently under construction. PROBLEM IS: China is currently 80% reliant on coal-fired electrical generation and choking in coal fumes, so they see nuclear energy as a green viable alternative;  However, with the global opinion now firmly against the highly dangerous use of Uranium-fueled nuclear power ( as evidenced by the Fukushima Dai No.1 Nuke plant Tragedy), China is looking for clean safe nuclear power alternatives.

ENTER THORIUM AS THE NUCLEAR FUEL OF THE FUTURE China is looking at spearheading efforts to make the nuclear industry safer by investing millions into research with reactors powered by the element Thorium – a metal, proponents say, is as common as lead, and  which, despite some concerns, would lead to nuclear power plants with far fewer safety issues as well as other benefits.

Wang Kan, leader of the Chinese “Tsinghua University Thorium Research Team” said: “Thorium-based reactors certainly have advantages…The energy release from Thorium is greater than from Uranium, the by-products from using Thorium are less toxic than from Uranium, and it’s much harder to make weapons from those by-products.”

Uploaded by Russia Today, 10 Jul 2011

MY TAKE

Please note that once again our Murdock Media Empire shunned this story, and that it was Russia who released it.  Fortunately both the Murdock Media Empire, and The Uranium Cartel are fast loosing their grip.  It is almost as hard to find real news in the Western World, as it is in Japan; that “tell it like it is”.  The Western media moguls are covering-up any news adverse to the very powerful Energy Cartels such as Uranium, Coal, Oil and Gas.

These days, the government of China is burdened with runaway industrial growth, choking air pollution, a more educated, ever more demanding society, whose energy demands are extremely hard to satisfy.  In China however, its central government is now willing to look at non-uranium fueled Nuclear power generation.  Thorium is a much safer, plentiful, and produces far fewer long- life radioactive isotopes.  Please see our recent article (Page) listed at right and titled : “It is High Time to Re-think Thorium as Fuel of The Future”.

We are glad to see China has put a “freeze” on any more Nukes, and to require additional safety checks at all 25 Uranium-fueled Nukes currently under construction.  It is clear t he Fukushima Tragedy is causing a political “double take”.  Even so, it is a bit disheartening that China is only willing to invest millions on Thorium Nuke Research & Development (R & D).  Such an effort will require Billions; not Millions of Dollar equivalents to succeed.  As a frame of financial reference, consider that it currently costs between $6B and $12B to build a single Nuke.

It is possible however, that China might consider allowing the Chinese “Tsinghua University Thorium Research Team” to “Modify” one of its Uranium Nukes under construction to use Thorium as a fuel.  Such a step would yield quicker, and cheaper R & D.  OUR WORLD NEEDS SOMEONE TO LEAD THE THORIUM NUKE DEVELOPMENT RACE, AND IT WILL NOT LIKELY BE THE WEST.  We certainly hope China will consider such initiative.  Western Cartels are too corrupted and colluded to do so.

gonzedo

July 13, 2011 at 12:06 AM Comments (3)

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