Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Fukushima Updates - June 4 - 6 , 2014 - Japanese Journalist: Workers “very worried” about deformed 400 ft. structure falling on Fukushima reactor buildings and causing another crisis — Immediate repairs needed yet “can’t do anything” due to extreme radiation levels — Staff told to “constantly watch it” — One of site’s most dangerous places .......... Study: Water helps dissolve Fukushima’s melted nuclear cores, accelerates corrosion — Plutonium concentrates on outer edge of fuel — Poses “a much longer environmental threat” than initial releases — Transport of nuclear material into environment to continue for many years if not isolated ........ Senior Scientist: Fukushima is not under control; It has ‘alarm bells’ going off on West Coast — Former Official: I’m humiliated Japan lies to world about how much contamination is entering Pacific; Nuclear material “polluting ocean more and more” ...... Items of note from Fukushima Diary - state of the facility and tritium contamination !

Energy News ......

NHK, June 6, 2014: [TEPCO] says more than 3 tons of radioactive water may have leaked from barriers surrounding storage tanks. [TEPCO] made the announcement on Friday [...] TEPCO found that regular patrols have not been conducted in the area near the tanks since March, and that the leakage may have begun then. [...] It detected higher levels of radiation around the area than at other locations in the complex. [...] TEPCO officials say regular patrols did not cover the area [...]
NHK, June 4, 2014: Officials from the Nuclear Regulation Authority on Monday found water leaking around 2 of the storage tanks. The tanks contain water with radiation levels above the government-set standards. [...] The water contained 9,800 Becquerels per liter of beta-ray emitting substances. But TEPCO officials said the leaked water had remained inside the barriers. However, TEPCO’s later investigations found that a drain valve had accidentally been left open. [...]
Vancouver Aquarium: Fukushima – A View From The Ocean, June 5, 2014 (h/t Deep13th Nuclear Waste Info): [...] Isotopes such as strontium-90 are becoming of greater concern as they are elevated relative to cesium in the groundwater and storage tanks at the reactor site. [...]
At 50:00 in
  • Dr. Ken Buesseler, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution oceanographer: Japan, in particular, has lost trust in their government — certainly TEPCO, the operators — for communicating the truth [...] They have problems with storage of waste on site, no end — I guess they have designed a cleanup system called ALPS to purify those tanks but they’ve done things just even a few weeks ago to bypass, taking water from the ground… and within a week or two then had to report that those waters were contaminated. There’s a continued series of problems of that site.

Fukushima Voice, May 28, 2014: Mako Oshidori in Düsseldorf “The Hidden Truth about Fukushima” [...] The lecture, given in Japanese [on March 8, 2014] and translated into English.
  • Moderator: My name is Mariko. Welcome to a lecture by Mako Oshidori. [...] A huge earthquake, followed by tsunami and the nuclear accident, has become an unprecedented disaster for the Japanese as well as the rest of the world. Moreover, this accident is not only out of control but continues to be in critical state. [...]
  • Mako Oshidori: I am actually a journalist with the highest attendance rate at the TEPCO press conference. [...] in 2013 when the Japanese central government decided to begin to restart nuclear power plants, the government placed a watch on me [...] a piece of paper was distributed with a list of names [...] such as the former prime minister Naoto Kan [...] A researcher who was given the list and told not to approach anybody on it was friendly with me and told me the list included my name. Soon after that a mysterious man began to follow me. [...]
Deformed ‘Stack’ Near Units 1 & 2
  • Oshidori: I would like to talk about the current status of Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant. This is a chimney called a “stack” [...] one of the places that I consider the most dangerous. It is 120 m tall. In December 2013, it was discovered the highest radiation level, 25 Sv/h, at the bottom of the stack. [...] humans cannot go near it. The problem gets worse. TEPCO discovered deformities on 4 sides at 60 of the 120 meter height [...] Some are totally severed. Ordinarily, this should be immediately repaired, but the bottom of the stack is 25 Sv/h [...] they can’t do anything about it. What TEPCO is doing about this is they have appointed workers to constantly watch it. [...] Workers on site are very worried about whether it would fall onto the reactor buildings. If it ever fell on Unit 1 or 2, all the workers would have to evacuate [...] and it could lead to a severe accident necessitating evacuation [...]

‘Nuclear Fuel in a Reactor Accident — Peter Burns, Rodney Ewing, Alexandra Navrotsky, 2012: Seawater was injected into the three active reactors […] large amounts of salt may have deposited in the reactor cores. […] Nonuniform burn-up in a fuel pellet gives higher concentrations of 239Pu near the pellet edge [...] the major potential pathway for continued release of radionuclides is through flowing water. […] Many radionuclides form aqueous complexes that are soluble in water. Furthermore, water promotes dissolution of the rod/fuel matrix, which releases radionuclides [that] pose a much longer environmental hazard […] The radiolytic breakdown of water creates oxidants (e.g., hydrogen peroxide) that can accelerate the oxidative corrosion of fuel […] If the water is alkaline, soluble nanoscale uranyl peroxo cage clusters are likely to form and persist in solution. […] there is no reliable way of predicting dissolution rates of damaged fuel in water under the conditions of a nuclear accident, especially one like Fukushima Daiichi in which fuel is exposed to hot or boiling seawater […] an understanding of the factors that determine radionuclide release is central to taking appropriate and timely action in order to minimize impacts on the environment and human health. […] Water that interacts with damaged fuel will transport radionuclides that present both short-term and longer-term environmental risk […] potentially continuing for many years if the damaged fuel is not adequately isolated [...]
AAAS Science Podcast interview with Peter Burns about study: […] it’s the interaction of the water and the air with that that is going to control the release of radioactivity to the environment […] what’s different about Fukushima relative to the earlier events is the vast quantities of water that were pumped into the reactor cores […] that created a whole new release pathway for radionuclides out of the reactors into the environment. We don’t know how much radioactivity was released through the water flow, and we don’t know very much about how the water interacted with the fuel and other structure materials. […] we need to take very seriously the development of knowledge about how […] melted nuclear fuel […] interacts with the environment, especially water that we might use in an emergency to cool it. Studies that have been done to date really haven’t looked at the longer-term interactions of water and the atmosphere with these damaged materials. […] as it interacts with water or whatever over time – [fuel] has a potential to release radionuclides that have much longer half-lives and they pose a much longer environmental threat.

Nuclear Hotseat, May 21, 2014:
  • 31:00 in — Katsutaka Idogawa, Former Mayor of Futaba, Fukushima: In the midst of all this sorrow, Prime Minister Abe is facing outward and promoting exports of nuclear power plants. [...] As a Japanese citizen I am truly ashamed […] The contaminated water from the plant is polluting the Pacific Ocean more and more. I feel humiliated when Abe lies to the world, when he says the radioactive contamination is completely blocked from spreading further into the ocean. […] I urge the people of the world to take a look at us [...] We’re living in conditions that punish us for what happened. Our dreams, our children’s futures, out towns have all been destroyed. We’ve been swept to the very margins of Japanese society and told to live there in silence. [...] Nuclear facilities bring misfortune on human kind. We all need to raise our voices and demand a safe environment where we can live and children can have dreams. We inherited a clean environment from our parents, but I as a parent cannot pass along a clean and beautiful town to my own children. This sad situation can never happen again. Please, don’t just help us, please help human kind.
  • Listen to the complete interview here
WCAI, May 19, 2014:
  • 1:15 in — Dr. Ken Buesseler of Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution: We’ve been saying since the early months after that there was still continued leaks. And that’s what’s happening today — both from groundwater that gets into buildings and back into the ocean, and from the 1,000+ tanks […] So there’s two sources on land, it’s hardly under control — the word that they use to describe the situation.
  • 3:00 in — Buesseler: I was actually surprised by the concern on the West Coast [...] This combination of fear, and unknown with radioactivity — and that can cause cancer — and the word ‘Fukushima’ being a very horrific disaster that we all know, and no one making measurements,  really got the alarm bells going on the West Coast.
  • 8:00 in — Buesseler: We’re finding a larger interest than we expected as time goes on.
  • Full WCAI broadcast available here

Fukushima Diary.....

2 Contaminated water tanks overflowed / 9,800,000 Bq/m3 of All β / “Rainwater leaking into the tanks since last year”

↑ The leaked tanks
↑ It is assumed that rain flowed into the tanks from here to push up the water level inside.
↑ Overflowed contaminated water around the tanks.
↑ A tank leaked from this bolthole.
↑ The other tank leaked from this bolthole too.

2 contaminated water tanks overflowed, according to Tepco.

These tanks have been stocking contaminated rainwater since last October. However natural rainwater has been leaking into the tanks from the top parts, the tank water reached the upper part of the tanks to end up leaking from the boltholes at 11cm below the top. Tepco wasn’t checking the leakage of these tanks on patrol.

All β nuclide density is 72,000,000 Bq/m3 in tank water. However Tepco is stating it decreased to be 9,800,000 Bq/m3 after leaking because it was mixed with rain.

The leaked water spread out of the tank area. Tepco announces they haven’t verified the volume of leaked water.

Highest density of Tritium detected from 25m underground / 3,100,000 Bq/m3

Extremely high density of Tritium was detected from groundwater of deep layer.

Tepco has started building the frozen water underground wall. In order to investigate the groundwater contamination outside of the wall, Tepco took sample from 25m underground.
As a result, 3,100,000 Bq/m3 of Tritium was measured from the sample taken near reactor2. The sampling date was 5/28/2014. From Fukushima Diary’s research, this is the highest reading since they started measuring.

They measured Strontium-90 from the same deep layer beside reactor4 last November.
There is a possibility that contaminated water is traveling under the sea bottom of Fukushima port to come up offshore.