Hunt for plutonium source

Little Mr. Pluto – the cute and friendly plutonium avatar of the Japan Atomic Energy Bureau

The Wall Street Journal had a good article today with a sidebar on the Hunt for Plutonium I am quoting this in its entirety here because it disappears beyond the paywall after 24hours usually.

Hunt for Plutonium

Workers are still probing for the source of the . . . → Read More: Hunt for plutonium source

Fukushima: Thinking back from the end scenario

The end scenario for Fukushima is murky at this point in time. I tend to work intuitively: that is seeing the end state and working back to the present and then working out the steps to get from here to there. So let me try to do that in this somewhat long post. It has been suggested that I make longer posts and . . . → Read More: Fukushima: Thinking back from the end scenario

Radiation in powers of 10 and a meditation on risk

XKCD had this neat Power of Ten Radiation chart which explains how much radiation is absorbed by humans in everyday sort of way and gives an idea of the scale of the radiation at Fukushima. Click on the chart for a link to the original article.

Edge had an interesting discussion on What We Cannot Predict (which used this chart) and had some . . . → Read More: Radiation in powers of 10 and a meditation on risk

On Plutonium toxicity

On the toxicity of Plutonium there is likely to be some over reaction and hysteria. I would refer you to the Plutonium information page of the World Nuclear Association.Since they are a pro-nuclear industry group, one should take their information in that light, however, I don’t think they are mis-stating the science.

Despite being toxic both chemically and because of its ionising radiation, . . . → Read More: On Plutonium toxicity

Plutonium detected outside Fukushima

Just yesterday I posted on Firedoglake that this was bound to happen. Now Fox News has confirmed it. This is horrible news. My heart goes out to those workers. They need better equipment and international support asap.

Power company officials say plutonium has been detected in the soil outside of the stricken Japanese nuclear complex. Tokyo Electric Power Co. says in a statement . . . → Read More: Plutonium detected outside Fukushima

Comparing Fukushima to Chernobyl

I found that New Scientist article that I had seen last week on a comparison of the output of radioactivity into the environment from Fukushima and Chernobyl. It states:

Japan’s damaged nuclear plant in Fukushima has been emitting radioactive iodine and caesium at levels approaching those seen in the aftermath of the Chernobyl accident in 1986. Austrian researchers have used a worldwide network . . . → Read More: Comparing Fukushima to Chernobyl

Radioactive water outside of Fukushima plant

A disturbing news story this morning: radioactive water is found outside the plants. There is no way to stop this water from entering the environment. Water retrieval is hampered by the fact that all holding tanks for radioactive water waste are full.

The water seeping into a trench outside the Number two reactor at Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant in northeast Japan had a . . . → Read More: Radioactive water outside of Fukushima plant

No boots for Japanese Nuclear workers

And in the posts today there was a confirmation of what I had read: the workers were walking in their own street shoes covered with plastic booties.

This is criminal. The workers should have the best protective clothing that Japan can provide, including waterproof and chemical proof boots. These things should have been on-site.

Chernobyl clean up person to Japanese: Run Away as fast a possible.

When reading about the burns on the feed of the workers in Fukushima Daiichi, I remembered reading this report last week about Natalia Manzurova, one of the few survivors among those directly involved in the long cleanup of Chernobyl. Her advice was heartfelt, but perhaps not possible for all the Japanese affected – “Run away as fast as possible”

Dana Kennedy interviewed Manzurovna . . . → Read More: Chernobyl clean up person to Japanese: Run Away as fast a possible.

TEPCO sent workers down into basement without telling them it was ‘hot’

Daily Yomiuri Online reported that Tokyo Power company (TEPCO) knew of a leak in the Number 3 reactor at Fukushima Daiichi prior to sending repair workers into the area. Most startling was the fact that the presence of the leak was not shared with workers pulling a power line into the damaged reactor, who last week walked through radioactive water pooled on the . . . → Read More: TEPCO sent workers down into basement without telling them it was ‘hot’