A new problem for the stricken Nuclear Plant Fukushima:
Radiation readings found near the surface of the lid of reactor No. 2 containment vessel is "dozens of sieverts per hour," lethal to humans as TEPCO clean-up appears to be going backward and still no end in sight!
TEPCO said they would clean up Fukushima by 2015 back in 2011, even though they had no known technology cable of such a task back then or even now! And more than ten years on they appear to be going backward in managing a problem that has no wish to go away and could still be around 25,000 years from now and I'm not kidding...
According to Arnie Gundersen of the Fairwinds website, the government of Japan claims that the Fukushima site will be entirely cleaned and decommissioned in less than forty years, that is scientifically impossible since some radioactive isotopes will be spread across the Fukushima site and surrounding landscape for 300 years and others for 250,000 years and a new problem has arrived.
The operator of the crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant could be forced to reconsider the plant's decommissioning process after lethal radiation levels equivalent to those of melted nuclear fuel were detected near one of the lids covering a reactor.
The Nuclear Regulation Authority said on Sept. 14 that a radiation reading near the surface of the lid of the No. 2 reactor’s containment vessel was 1.2 sieverts per hour, higher than the level previously assumed. The discovery came on Sept. 9 during a study by the NRA and Tokyo Electric Power Co., the operator of the plant. TEPCO plans to insert a robotic arm into the No. 2 reactor’s containment vessel from its side in a trial planned for the second half of 2022 to retrieve pieces of melted nuclear fuel.
“We will consider what we can do during the trial on the basis of the detection of the concentration of contamination” in the upper area of the containment vessel, a TEPCO official said. The round concrete lid, called the shield plug, is 12 meters in diameter and about 60 centimeters thick. The shield plug consists of three lids placed on top of each other to block extremely high radiation emanating from the reactor core. Each lid weighs 150 tons.
When operators work on the decommissioning, the shield plug will be removed to allow for entry into the containment vessel. The NRA said a huge amount of radioactive cesium that was released during the meltdown of the No. 2 reactor in March 2011 remained between the uppermost lid and middle lid. In the Sept. 9 study, workers bored two holes measuring 7 cm deep each on the surface of the uppermost lid to measure radiation doses thereby deploying remotely controlled robots.
One radiation reading was 1.2 sieverts per hour at a location 4 cm down from the surface in a hole near the center of the lid. Prior to the study, the NRA estimated that the dose from a contamination source that existed beneath the lid was more than 10 sieverts per hour, a level lethal to humans if exposed to it for about an hour. But the finding suggested that the actual dose would likely be dozens of sieverts per hour, thus far more dangerous. While it is expected to be a huge challenge to dismantle the lids, TEPCO has yet to decide what to do with them during the decades-long cleanup work. Full Story
According to Arnie Gundersen of the Fairwinds website, the government of Japan claims that the Fukushima site will be entirely cleaned and decommissioned in less than forty years, that is scientifically impossible since some radioactive isotopes will be spread across the Fukushima site and surrounding landscape for 300 years and others for 250,000 years.
Nearly 12 years after the 2011 meltdowns of three reactor cores at the Fukushima Dai-ichi Nuclear Plant, radioactive water continues to accumulate as the water used to keep the cores cool leaks from the damaged reactors and is stored in tanks so it won’t escape into the ocean or elsewhere. For years, a government panel has been discussing ways to handle the crisis and to reassure fishermen and residents who fear possible health effects from releasing the radioactive water as well as harm to the region’s image and fishing industry.
Fukushima fishermen and the National Federation of Fisheries Co-operative Associations have strongly opposed past suggestions by government officials that the water is released into the sea, warning of an “immeasurable impact on the future of the Japanese fishing industry,” with local fishermen still unable to resume full operations after the nuclear plant accident.
The water has been treated, and the plant operator, Tokyo Electric Power Co., says all 62 radioactive elements it contains can be removed to levels not harmful to humans except for tritium. There is no established method to fully separate tritium from water, but scientists say it is not a problem in small amounts. Most of the water stored at the plant still contains other radioactive elements including cancer-causing cesium and strontium and needs further treatment. TEPCO suggested a controlled release of the water into the Pacific, allowing the water to evaporate, or a combination of the two methods. The ministry said the controlled release to the sea is the best option because it would “stably dilute and disperse” the water from the plant and can be properly monitored.
A release is expected to take years and radiation levels will be kept well below the legal limit, the proposal said. The ministry noted that tritium has been routinely released from nuclear plants around the world, including Fukushima before the accident.
Evaporation has been a tested and proven method following the 1979 core meltdown at the Three Mile Island nuclear plant in the United States, where it took two years to get rid of 8,700 tons of tritium-contaminated water. TEPCO says it is currently storing more than 1 million tons of radioactive water and only has space to hold up to 1.37 million tons, or until the summer of 2022, raising speculation that the water may be released after next summer’s Tokyo Olympics. AP
On the other side of the mighty Pacific, the latest study shows an increase in levels of Fukushima-related contamination off the shores of Alaska, regular readers of The Big Wobble will know Bill Laughing-Bear has been keeping an eye on fish in Alaskan waters and has warned us all of rising radioactive contamination for years now.
Recently other warnings have been published as the slow drip-feed of information is slowly being released. In 2017, A study by the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa revealed almost 50% of fish consumed on the islands of Hawai’i were contaminated with cesium 134 the radioactive finger-print of Fukushima. The report also showed that migrating organisms can transport the Fukushima-signature (cesium 134) over significant distances as they showed detectable 134Cs (6.3±1.5 Bq/kg) in Pacific bluefin tuna caught off the California coast only a year after the incident.
Another study found cesium 134 in longfin tuna (Albacore) along the western coast of the US just one year after the Fukushima disaster. The recent findings as you might expect are being played down and the usual sound-bites are telling us "it's nothing to worry about," something the powers that be have been saying for 9 years now. Another study by Alaska Sea Grant agent, Gay Sheffield claimed, a slightly elevated level of radioactive contamination connected to the Fukushima nuclear disaster has been detected in the northern Bering Sea. The level of cesium-137, a radioactive isotope, is extremely low and not considered a health concern, according to state epidemiologists. The sampling, conducted by residents of Saint Lawrence Island, documents the Fukushima plume’s northern edge arriving in the Bering Sea for the first time and shows levels of cesium-137 higher than they were before the 2011 nuclear power plant accident in Japan. Full story
Thanks to: https://www.thebigwobble.org