HomeLatest ThreadsGreatest ThreadsForums & GroupsMy SubscriptionsMy Posts
DU Home » Latest Threads » Forums & Groups » Topics » Environment & Energy » Environment & Energy (Group) » Nature News: Government '...

Thu Aug 29, 2013, 02:56 PM

Nature News: Government 'must step in' to halt Fukushima leaks

Government 'must step in' to halt Fukushima leaks
Ministers called on to intervene as regulators upgrade severity level of the leakage.


Quirin Schiermeier& Jay Alabaster
29 August 2013


<snip>

Incident upgrade
The leak of some 300 tonnes of partially treated water that had been used to cool melted nuclear rods from the destroyed reactors was reported by TEPCO on 19 August. The radioactivity of the water stands at about 80 megabecquerels per litre, about 1% of what it was before treatment by an on-site purification system. Japan’s Nuclear Regulation Authority initially labelled the incident a level 1 event (known as an ‘anomaly’) on the International Nuclear Event Scale, but yesterday upgraded it to level 3 (‘serious incident’), citing the large amount of contaminated water leaked and the fact that a safety buffer was not available for the water tank in question.

At present, TEPCO is storing more than 300,000 tonnes of radioactive water on the site of the destroyed Fukushima Daiichi plant. Radioactive caesium isotopes are being removed from the water by an advanced liquid-processing system built after the accident, but a facility for removing strontium isotopes is not yet ready. Tritium, another harmful radionuclide, cannot be safely removed by any known purification system because it is incorporated within water molecules.

<snip>

Storage situation
Some 400 tonnes of cooling water are being collected in tanks each day. The growing fleet of storage tanks — which currently stands at about 1,000 — is a source of alarm for experts, who fear that huge amounts of contaminated water will eventually have to be dumped into the ocean. Worse still, some 300 tonnes of groundwater highly contaminated with caesium-137, which has a 30-year half-life, are thought to be flowing from beneath the destroyed reactors into the sea every day.

The potential for harm is huge, says Jota Kanda, an oceanographer at the Tokyo University of Marine Science and Technology who monitors radionuclide distribution in sediments and biota off Fukushima1.

“The effects of one relatively small leak may be insignificant,” he says. “But there are huge amounts of radionuclides in these tanks and the water may have to be stored for a long time to come. If more leaks were to occur the consequences might be severe.”

<snip>



http://www.nature.com/news/government-must-step-in-to-halt-fukushima-leaks-1.13626

8 replies, 1247 views

Reply to this thread

Back to top Alert abuse

Always highlight: 10 newest replies | Replies posted after I mark a forum
Replies to this discussion thread

Response to kristopher (Original post)

Thu Aug 29, 2013, 03:36 PM

1. They needed to call in the world for help, two years ago. nt

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Mnemosyne (Reply #1)

Thu Aug 29, 2013, 03:42 PM

2. and all the world's nuclear experts should have been called when it happened ....

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to MindMover (Reply #2)

Thu Aug 29, 2013, 04:11 PM

4. That's what I meant. All have been keeping a close eye on the situation, I am sure, and have

likely been frustrated as hell wanting to jump in. Amazing it has been allowed to reach this point.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to MindMover (Reply #2)

Thu Aug 29, 2013, 10:32 PM

8. Japan's technocracy represents a sizable chunk of "the world's nuclear experts".

And they are considered to be at or near the top of the pyramid.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to kristopher (Original post)

Thu Aug 29, 2013, 03:52 PM

3. tangentially, are they using metric tons?

that would be easy to convert to liters.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to kristopher (Original post)

Thu Aug 29, 2013, 04:50 PM

5. Japan DID NOT WANT HELP!

Sorry for the caps, but this makes me furious.
I specifically heard the Japanese ambassador tell CNN's Wolf Blitzer that Japan would handle it by themselves!
How's that working for you now??
fuck you guys and your massive FUBAR....it's impacting the entire planet now with no end in sight.
(and salmon, clams, cod and oysters used to be my favorite foods)

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to PearliePoo2 (Reply #5)

Thu Aug 29, 2013, 10:30 PM

7. They still aren't asking for help.

The OP is about the Japanese Government possibly stepping in.

I don't think the problem is who is handling the aftermath of the meltdowns - I see that as a point of distraction. The problem is that we had a nuclear plant that experience multiple reactor meltdowns and it can't be "fixed" as we are used to fixing things. The only path to follow is one where you are constantly playing catchup and trying to mitigate an ongoing set of deteriorating conditions. You might get ahead of the problem for a bit, but since a real "fix" isn't within the realm of current capabilities, you have to expect this game of "whack-a-mole" to continue well into the foreseeable future.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to kristopher (Original post)

Thu Aug 29, 2013, 05:06 PM

6. Doesn't General Electric have a warranty on their latch key nuclear plants.

I think we should make them clean it up instead of allowing them to advertise how wonderful they are for the environment.

Perhaps they can stop making war machines for a little while and clean up their mess.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink

Reply to this thread