The Transportation Security Administration has been quietly removing its X-ray body scanners from major airports over the last few weeks and replacing them with machines that radiation experts believe are safer.
The TSA says it made the decision not because of safety concerns but to speed up checkpoints at busier airports. It means, though, that far fewer passengers will be exposed to radiation because the X-ray scanners are being moved to smaller airports.
The backscatters, as the X-ray scanners are known, were swapped out at Boston Logan International Airport in early October. Similar replacements have occurred at Los Angeles International Airport, Chicago O’Hare, Orlando and John F. Kennedy in New York, the TSA confirmed Thursday.
17 months after the worst nuclear accident since Chernobyl, scientists are finding mutant butterflies now in the Fukushima area. They started noticing this some months ago with Butterflies with smaller wings. Now with the second generation, with small wings, it is a fact that we are seeing fallout (quite literally) in living organisms.
This added to the ‘tiny’ amounts of cesium found off San Diego would seem to me to be significant, although the scientists say that 10 time the amounts found in Tuna previously is till safe! I would not bet on this.
Needless to say it remains our responsibility to monitor our immediate environment and take the necessary precautions. There are several herbs out there that can help you to reduce the effects of some types of radiation, like bladderwrack.
As you can imagine in Post Tsunami Japan the backlash against the Nuclear power industry has been huge. None of their nuclear power plants were operating for quite sometime after the Tsunami, all of them were shut down for ‘scheduled maintenance’ if you can believe that. Only withing the past 2 weeks were two plants allowed to restart.
As the radiation disaster continues, many in the areas most affected by the tsunamis are hoping to rebuild, after all this is their home. What is interesting is the way in which they want to go about it. Sustainable and non nuclear! Solar panels to cover ground that can never be used again due to radiation. Although I can’t for the life of me imagine how or who would install them and then maintain them in such radiation.
I personally am hoping that the nuclear cabal in Japan has been damaged beyond repair and that we will see further damage to the industry worldwide. In my opinion it is absolutely irresponsible to continue to build nuclear power plants and operate those that exist. Once that monster is out of the bag the damage is not reversible in our lifetimes…
My children nor theirs should suffer from this generations arrogance. And arrogance is what it is plain and simple, not only in the case of nuclear power but finance as well. The destruction caused by both, while different, is nonetheless devastating to all of us on the planet!
I am encouraged that the people of Japan are trying to stand up to the political/nuclear/financial/academic cabal that promotes such destructive ideas. Not only can we see the destruction evident in the physical and spreading radiation from the Nukes but also in the financial devastation. Japan has passed a QUADRILLION IN DEBT! This is the highest debt level in both absolute and relative terms as a percentage of GDP.
The citizens of this country should pay heed to the failures in Japan. We are not completely unlike their case model…aging population, enormous debt, nuclear power plants built on geologically sensitive ground, financial/political/academic cabal that has the power!
Time to wake up and take some action…at least in my opinion!
Over the past several months the ‘Fukushima’ debate as I call it has resurfaced and has apparently concerned a few folks. I mean hey, for so long it was just out of sight out of mind. We kept telling people that radioactivity just doesn’t go away in as many ways as we could and people not only got tired of our pleas for some awareness, a few actually complained about our persistent emails to the point that we figured the majority of people just didn’t get what all the ‘fuss’ was about. Out of sight out of mind!
We folks, this issue just isn’t going to go away, not in our lifetimes nor our children’s. Sad but true. I suspect that we will continue to see new levels of ‘background’ radiation being adopted over time and no one will notice…at least not many. Not nearly enough to make a difference.
Once again money will rule the roost…the game seems to be all about ‘saving’ the nuclear power industry. Clean energy-oil free energy-and all that nonsense. Remember these industry guys and their politicians have a ton of money and time. They can wait the storm out and while waiting manipulate enough press and scientific boards to say and do just what they want. All the while the peasants just eat their garbage and continue on with their existence. Not having enough time, energy or money to really make a united stand against this travesty of energy systems.
Pay attention, this campaign has already begun. There are a few outcries, especially from the Japanese people wanting criminal charges and such. I suspect there will be a few symbolic heads roll, enough to appease the crowds while having many esteemed scientists saying how safe nukes are etc and eventually, after many august panels touting the efficiency and safety of nuclear power, lo and behold we will have a rash of new nukes and old ones restarting…mark my words. Sad but true.
Meanwhile take a look at this you tube that came from St Louis, I love it that someone is doing their own research!
The real question becomes, how do we survive this mess? Has anyone given any thought to that?
For the first time, scientists have discovered that tuna contaminated by last year’s radiation leak from the crippled Fukushima nuclear plant have crossed the Pacific Ocean into U.S. waters, according to the Associated Press. Scientists have been started to discover the radioactive fish some 6,000 miles from their place of origin, the first time that large, migrating fish have been shown to carry contaminants over such a great distance.
Normally, radiation and other contaminants are found in smaller fish and plankton, and only in waters close to the source of contamination. However, levels of radioactive cesium have been found at ten times the normal levels in fish off of the coast of California. The current levels, say officials, are still below the levels considered unsafe by the U.S. and Japanese governments.
Fukushima one year on. I used to think that the lack of attention on Fukushima was just one of those out of sight out of mind things driven by the lack of coverage by mainstream media inducing some type of lethargy on the American people. So here we are 1 year down the road and the ‘fallout’ literally and figuratively continues and will do so for many years to come. There are still a few voices that continue to show concern, Arnie Gundersen among others continues to be, in my opinion, the most balanced and educated among all those following this catastrophe.
Of course, we still can’t really trust the information that is being fed us by MSM. After all the Japanese government and Nuclear industry are all confessed liars. The damage to the environment continues, hot wreckage is still washing ashore everywhere not to mention the huge debris field in the Pacific ocean. The human damage is, as expected, most obvious the closer to ground zero one gets with Japanese families financially and emotionally devastated. It seems the Japanese government just wants to ignore the incredible damage and just sweep it all under the rug. Nonetheless, damage there is and will continue to exist for decades as the radiation refuses to subside according to authorities wishes and the winds and ocean current carry the devastation far and wide.
I was just in southern California and there is a very large Nuclear power plant there, right on the ocean and fault line. In my opinion it is only a question of time before we see an ‘accident’ a la Fukushima occur. All we need is a large earthquake and tsunami and we are in the same boat….but this time the devastation will be worse in our country. I wonder when we will learn….
1000 times the radiation levels found over 400 miles off Japanese coast and they say that they are well below levels harmful to fish and people. For some reason I have a very hard time believing this one.
I am under the impression that any exposure to higher levels of radiation is not good. Just take a look at the incidences of premature births and deaths in areas, especially Washington state, since the Fukushima disaster.
Prolonged exposure of anything to higher levels of radiation will affect the organism, I don’t care what kind of organism it is!
Radiation detected 400 miles off Japanese coast
Associated PressBy BRIAN SKOLOFF and MALCOLM RITTER | Associated Press – 4 hrs ago
SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Radioactive contamination from the Fukushima power plant disaster has been detected as far as almost 400 miles off Japan in the Pacific Ocean, with water showing readings of up to 1,000 times more than prior levels, scientists reported Tuesday.
But those results for the substance cesium-137 are far below the levels that are generally considered harmful, either to marine animals or people who eat seafood, said Ken Buesseler of the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution in Massachusetts.
He spoke Tuesday in Salt Lake City at the annual Ocean Sciences Meeting, attended by more than 4,000 researchers this week.
The results are for water samples taken in June, about three months after the power plant disaster, Buesseler said. In addition to thousands of water samples, researchers also sampled fish and plankton and found cesium-137 levels well below the legal health limit.
“We’re not over the hump” yet in terms of radioactive contamination of the ocean because of continued leakage from the plant, Buesseler said in an interview before Tuesday’s talk. He was chief scientist for the cruise that collected the data.
The ship sampled water from about 20 miles to about 400 miles off the coast east of the Fukushima plant. Concentrations of cesium-137 throughout that range were 10 to 1,000 times normal, but they were about one-tenth the levels generally considered harmful, Buesseler said.
Cesium-137 wasn’t the only radioactive substance released from the plant, but it’s of particular concern because of its long persistence in the environment. Its half-life is 30 years.
The highest readings last June were not always from locations closest to the Fukushima plant, Buesseler said. That’s because swirling ocean currents formed concentrations of the material, he said.
Most of the cesium-137 detected during the voyage probably entered the ocean from water discharges, rather than atmospheric fallout, he added.
Hartmut Nies, of the International Atomic Energy Agency, said Buesseler’s findings were not surprising, given the vastness of the ocean and its ability to absorb and dilute materials.
“This is what we predicted,” Nies said after Buesseler presented his research.
Nies said the water’s cesium-137 concentration has been so diluted that just 20 miles offshore, “if it was not seawater, you could drink it without any problems.”
“This is good news,” he said, adding that scientists expect levels to continue to decrease over time.
“We still don’t have a full picture,” Nies said, “but we can expect the situation will not become worse.”
I still take Enerfood and an iodine supplement daily just to remain healthy. The enerfood has spirulina and chlorella in it, both proven to help detox from radiation.
I don’t know if you will find the below article as disturbing as I but regardless the truth continues to come out and I suspect we will be seeing more on this cover up.
That these guys to not distribute information, real and truthful, to their citizens to avoid widespread panic is just absurd! I am sure there are and will continue to be needless deaths as a result of overexposure to radiation in the days, months and years to come due to their callous disregard for the people.
I am wondering when this breaking truth about how our government behaved and continues to behave about Fukushima and what that will eventually lead to for the people here in the U.S.
Japan kept silent on worst nuclear crisis scenario
By MARI YAMAGUCHI and YURI KAGEYAMA | Associated Press – Wed, Jan 25, 201
TOKYO (AP) — The Japanese government’s worst-case scenario at the height of the nuclear crisis last year warned that tens of millions of people, including Tokyo residents, might need to leave their homes, according to a report obtained by The Associated Press. But fearing widespread panic, officials kept the report secret.
The recent emergence of the 15-page internal document may add to complaints in Japan that the government withheld too much information about the world’s worst nuclear accident since Chernobyl.
It also casts doubt about whether the government was sufficiently prepared to cope with what could have been an evacuation of unprecedented scale.
The report was submitted to then-Prime Minister Naoto Kan and his top advisers on March 25, two weeks after the earthquake and tsunami devastated the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant, causing three reactors to melt down and generating hydrogen explosions that blew away protective structures.
Workers ultimately were able to bring the reactors under control, but at the time, it was unclear whether emergency measures would succeed. Kan commissioned the report, compiled by the Japan Atomic Energy Commission, to examine what options the government had if those efforts failed.
Authorities evacuated 59,000 residents within 20 kilometers (12 miles) of the Fukushima plant, with thousands more were evacuated from other towns later. The report said there was a chance far larger evacuations could be needed.
The report looked at several ways the crisis could escalate — explosions inside the reactors, complete meltdowns, and the structural failure of cooling pools used for spent nuclear fuel.
It said that each contingency was possible at the time it was written, and could force all workers to flee the vicinity, meaning the situation at the plant would unfold on its own, unmitigated.
Using matter-of-fact language, diagrams and charts, the report said that if meltdowns spiral out of control, radiation levels could soar.
In that case, it said evacuation orders should be issued for residents within and possibly beyond a 170-kilometer (105 mile) radius of the plant and “voluntary” evacuations should be offered for everyone living within 250 kilometers (155 miles) and even beyond that range.
That’s an area that would have included Tokyo and its suburbs, with a population of 35 million people, and other major cities such as Sendai, with a million people, and Fukushima city with 290,000 people.
The report further warned that contaminated areas might not be safe for “several decades.”
“We cannot rule out further developments that may lead to an unpredictable situation at Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear plant, where there has been an accident, and this report outlines a summary of that unpredictable situation,” says the document, written by Shunsuke Kondo, head of the commission, which oversees nuclear policy.
After Kan received the report, he and other Japanese officials publicly insisted that there was no need to prepare for wider-scale evacuations.
Rumors of the document grew this month after media reports outlined its findings and an outside panel was created to investigate possible coverups. Kyodo News agency described the contents of the document in detail on Saturday.
The government continues to refuse to make the document public. The AP obtained it Wednesday through a government source, who insisted on anonymity because the document was still categorized as internal.
Goshi Hosono, the Cabinet minister in charge of the nuclear crisis, implicitly acknowledged the document’s existence earlier this month, but said the government had felt no need to make it public.
“It was a scenario based on hypothesis, and even in the event of such a development, we were told that residents would have enough time to evacuate,” Hosono said.
“We were concerned about the possibility of causing excessive and unnecessary worry if we went ahead and made it public,” he said. “That’s why we decided not to disclose it.”
A Japanese government nuclear policy official, Masato Nakamura, said Wednesday that he stood behind Hosono’s decisions on the document.
“It was all his decisions,” he said. “We do not disclose all administrative documents.”
Japanese authorities and regulators have been repeatedly criticized for how they have handled information amid the unfolding nuclear crisis. Officials initially denied that the reactors had melted down, and have been accused of playing down the health risks of exposure to radiation.
In another example, a radiation warning system known as SPEEDI had identified high-risk areas where thousands of people were continuing to live while the reactors were in critical condition. Officials did not use that data to order evacuations; they have since said it was not accurate enough.
The outside panel investigating the government response to the nuclear crisis has been critical, calling for more transparency in relaying information to the public.
“Risk communication during the disaster cannot be said to have been proper at all,” it said in its interim report last month.
Follow Mari Yamaguchi on Twitter at http://twitter.com/mariyamaguchi and Yuri Kageyama at http://twitter.com/yurikageyama
If someone asks me why I don’t trust any government this article is probably as good as any to support my view…how about you?
I am wondering if anyone cares about Fukushima anymore. For those that still care, just the other day there was nuclear fission going on and now high levels of radiation. This situation is still very hot and if it is improving I would ask how and where!
The article below along with the fission article just the other day tell me that things there are still very, very bad.
High Level of Radiation at Fukushima Station
By Chris Cooper - Nov 6, 2011 1:50 AM MT
Tokyo Electric Power Co. found a dangerous level of radiation at its wrecked Fukushima nuclear plant, eight months after the March 11 earthquake and tsunami that caused the worst atomic crisis in 25 years.
Workers at the company usually called Tepco detected 620 millisieverts of radiation an hour on the first floor of Reactor 3 on Nov. 3, the highest level found in that unit, it said.
The level of radiation is more than the 500-millisievert short-term dose recommended as the maximum for emergency workers in live-saving situations, according to the World Nuclear Association. The company and government officials are trying to contain the worst nuclear crisis since Chernobyl in 1986 after the March 11 earthquake and tsunami caused a loss of cooling and the meltdowns of three reactors.
Tepco will today start taking radiation out of water used to cool spent fuel rods, spokesman Hiroki Kawamata said today by phone.
The utility will start decontaminating coolant water for spent rods held in the upper section of Reactor 2, which was relatively undamaged in the explosions that rocked the Fukushima Dai-Ichi plant in March.
Tepco on Nov. 4 won approval for a 900 billion yen ($11.5 billion) bailout from the government after the Fukushima nuclear catastrophe to avert bankruptcy and start paying compensation for the crisis.
Trade and Industry Minister Yukio Edano approved the support after Tepco committed to cutting 7,400 jobs and 2.5 trillion yen in costs. The utility forecast an annual loss of 600 billion yen, its second since the March earthquake and tsunami wrecked its Fukushima nuclear plant.
The government of Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda is stepping in to ensure residents, farmers, fishermen and forestry businesses are properly compensated by a utility that supplies power to 29 million customers in the political and economic heart of Japan.
The forecast by Japan’s biggest utility brings its losses to 1.8 trillion yen since the disaster. The company plans to cut about 14 percent of its workforce and shave off the costs during the next 10 years, it said in a statement last week.
Tepco shares fell 0.7 percent to 300 yen at the close in Tokyo on Nov. 4. They are down 86 percent since three reactors melted down at the Fukushima Dai-Ichi nuclear plant north of Tokyo. The company reported first-half earnings at about 4 p.m. after the market closed on Nov. 4.
Tepco had a 627.3 billion yen loss in the six months to Sept. 30 against a profit of 92 billion yen a year earlier. It’s forecasting an operating loss of 305 billion yen for the full- year, according to its earnings statement.
Its loss was 1.25 trillion yen in the year to March 31 and 572 billion yen in this year’s first quarter.
The reactor meltdowns in Fukushima forced 160,000 people to flee radiation and damaged fishing, farming and forestry businesses.
“Tepco must compensate those affected with sincerity and generosity as well as carry out a thorough reorganization,” Edano told reporters in Tokyo on Nov. 4.
Higashi-Dori village about 600 kilometers (380 miles) north of Tokyo and the host village of one of the nuclear power plants shut down in the disaster, received 15.7 billion yen from nuclear operators, the Asahi newspaper reported today.
Tepco and Tohoku Electric Power Co., which have had all their east coast atomic stations shut down in the disaster, paid the donations and fees over a 30 year period, the newspaper said.
To contact the reporter on this story: Chris Cooper in Tokyo at email@example.com
To contact the editor responsible for this story: Paul Tighe at firstname.lastname@example.org
I urge you to stay on top of this event. It has the power to affect you greatly!
This Fukushima nuclear disaster will not abate just because no one is reporting it to you! I urge everyone to remain vigilant about this disaster, for as it is getting better (according to some accounts) it is doing so from a position of absolute catastrophe for mankind. Everything is relative and better from a worst case scenario is still very, very bad.
Japanese Radiation Expert Koide on Fukushima Dangers
Sep. 12, 2011
Asia-Pacific Journal Feature
Nuclear power proponent turned critic Koide Hiroaki is one of the best informed opponents of Japan’s nuclear system. Since the March 11 crisis, he has spoken out continuously on the potential for serious effects on radiation public health and the need for a more comprehensive government strategy to protect the people of Fukushima and surrounding prefectures. In the Asia-Pacific Journal piece The Truth About Nuclear Power, Koide highlighted flawed assumptions about nuclear safety. In addition, a June talk by Koide has been subtitled in English and posted on Youtube:
Now, in the major Japanese daily Mainichi Shimbun, he turns his attention to gaps in scientific knowledge about the potential impacts of radiation on human health.
Radiation expert says outcome of nuke crisis hard to predict, warns of further dangers
As a radiation metrology and nuclear safety expert at Kyoto University’s Research Reactor Institute, Hiroaki Koide has been critical of how the government and Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO) have handled the nuclear disaster at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant. Below, he shares what he thinks may happen in the coming weeks, months and years.
The nuclear disaster is ongoing. Immediately after the crisis first began to unfold, I thought that we’d see a definitive outcome within a week. However, with radioactive materials yet to be contained, we’ve remained in the unsettling state of not knowing how things are going to turn out.
Without accurate information about what’s happening inside the reactors, there’s a need to consider various scenarios. At present, I believe that there is a possibility that massive amounts of radioactive materials will be released into the environment again.
At the No. 1 reactor, there’s a chance that melted fuel has burned through the bottom of the pressure vessel, the containment vessel and the floor of the reactor building, and has sunk into the ground. From there, radioactive materials may be seeping into the ocean and groundwater.
The use of water to cool down the reactors immediately after the crisis first began resulted in 110,000 cubic meters of radiation-tainted water. Some of that water is probably leaking through the cracks in the concrete reactor buildings produced by the March 11 quake. Contaminated water was found flowing through cracks near an intake canal, but I think that’s just the tip of the iceberg. I believe that contaminated water is still leaking underground, where we can’t see it. Because of this, I believe immediate action must be taken to build underground water barriers that would close off the nuclear power plant to the outside world and prevent radioactive materials from spreading. The important thing is to stop any further diffusion of radioactive materials.
The government and plant operator TEPCO are trumpeting the operation of the circulation cooling system, as if it marks a successful resolution to the disaster. However, radiation continues to leak from the reactors. The longer the circulation cooling system keeps running, the more radioactive waste it will accumulate. It isn’t really leading us in the direction we need to go.
It’s doubtful that there’s even a need to keep pouring water into the No.1 reactor, where nuclear fuel is suspected to have burned through the pressure vessel. Meanwhile, it is necessary to keep cooling the No. 2 and 3 reactors, which are believed to still contain some fuel, but the cooling system itself is unstable. If the fuel were to become overheated again and melt, coming into contact with water and trigger a steam explosion, more radioactive materials will be released.
TEPCO says it is aiming to bring the No. 1, 2 and 3 reactors to cold shutdown by January 2012. Cold shutdown, however, entails bringing the temperature of sound nuclear fuel in pressure vessels below 100 degrees Celsius. It would be one thing to aim for this in April, when the government had yet to confirm that a meltdown had indeed taken place. But what is the point of “aiming for cold shutdown” now, when we know that fuel is no longer sound?
In the days ahead, the storage of enormous quantities of radiation-contaminated waste, including tainted mud resulting from the decontamination process, will become a major problem. Because the responsibility for spreading nuclear materials into the environment lies with TEPCO, it makes sense to bring all the radioactive waste to TEPCO headquarters in Tokyo.
Since that’s not possible, the waste should be taken to the grounds of the nuclear power plant. If the plant is not large enough to accommodate all the waste, then a location close to the plant will also have to be designated as a nuclear graveyard. However, no one should take advantage of the chaos and force Fukushima to host interim radioactive waste repositories for spent fuel from other nuclear power plants.
Recovering the melted nuclear fuel is another huge challenge. I can’t even imagine how that could be done. When the Three Mile Island accident took place in 1972, the melted nuclear fuel had stayed within the pressure vessel, making defueling possible. With Fukushima, however, there is a possibility that nuclear fuel has fallen into the ground, in which case it will take 10 or 20 years to recover it. We are now head to head with a situation that mankind has never faced before.
(Mainichi Japan) September 9, 2011