NUKE

Fukushima Could Still Armageddon The World

The world has become largely desensitized to what has happened and what is still happening in the wake of the nuclear disaster at the Daiichi nuclear plant in Fukushima Japan more than a year ago. Arnie Gunderson of Fairewinds Associates, with more than 40 years experience in the nuclear industry explains that the three reactors continue to melt down. However even more disconcerting is the apparent fact that the ‘fuel pools’ of reactors 3 and 4 may be threatening the whole Northern Hemisphere.

You see, the fuel pools (the nuclear fuel storage pools) are themselves suspended three and four stories high in the air, and have badly damaged structural support. Should either of these fall over and lose their cooling fluid, the thousands of fuel rods will overheat and explode, and threaten a world scale disaster never before seen.

Even a crack in the fuel pool would be enough to bring on catastrophe, and at a minimum, be the end of Tokyo, as reported on Asahi TV and translated on enenews.com.

The present conditions of Unit 4 are like this. You see, almost no walls. They were blown off, and honestly speaking, the Unit 4 is a wreck. A wreck.

Now, what if an earthquake occurred right now and the water in the pool started to leak?

I asked this question to Dr. Koide.

If a large aftershock occurred and the wall here collapsed, the water in the pool would leak out and the spent fuel would not be cooled any more. Then, they would start to melt, probably completely. And huge amount of radiation contained in the spend fuel would be released outside, with no walls to block it.

What if a destructive earthquake occurred during those years?

That would be the end. The end? Yes.

You see, that would be the end.

Unbelievable…unbelievable.

This is a serious problem.

TEPCO knows dealing with this problem is most important for now.

 

Reactor #3 had completely blown it’s walls apart leaving the fuel pool (what’s left of it) and the rest of the rubble entirely open. Reactor #4 had it’s roof blown off and has almost no walls remaining. The primary concern is that of earthquakes in the region, and the possibility of an already weakened structure collapsing, leaving no further means to manually keep the thousands of spent fuel rods cool.

I read the following comment  from a professor of physics, “There is no containment – between you and hundreds of tons of spent and fresh fuel is just some water, and air, and time. Ask yourself – what is the next step with the Unit 4 spent fuel pool? What has been done in the past year except to fill it with water and hope for the best? What happens if it fails catastrophically?

The situation there, is and has been on the razor edge of full-on world catastrophe.

Japan’s former Ambassador to Switzerland, Mr. Mitsuhei Murata, was invited to speak at the Public Hearing of the Budgetary Committee of the House of Councilors on March 22, 2012, on the Fukushima nuclear power plants accident. Before the Committee, Ambassador Murata strongly stated that if the crippled building of reactor unit 4—with 1,535 fuel rods in the spent fuel pool 100 feet (30 meters) above the ground—collapses, not only will it cause a shutdown of all six reactors but will also affect the common spent fuel pool containing 6,375 fuel rods, located some 50 meters from reactor 4. In both cases the radioactive rods are not protected by a containment vessel; dangerously, they are open to the air. This would certainly cause a global catastrophe like we have never before experienced. He stressed that the responsibility of Japan to the rest of the world is immeasurable. Such a catastrophe would affect us all for centuries. Ambassador Murata informed us that the total numbers of the spent fuel rods at the Fukushima Daiichi site excluding the rods in the pressure vessel is 11,421 (396+615+566+1,535+994+940+6375).

Based on U.S. Energy Department data, assuming a total of 11,138 spent fuel assemblies are being stored at the Dai-Ichi site, nearly all, which is in pools. They contain roughly 336 million curies (~1.2 E+19 Bq) of long-lived radioactivity. About 134 million curies is Cesium-137 — roughly 85 times the amount of Cs-137 released at the Chernobyl accident as estimated by the U.S. National Council on Radiation Protection (NCRP). The total spent reactor fuel inventory at the Fukushima-Daichi site contains nearly half of the total amount of Cs-137 estimated by the NCRP to have been released by all atmospheric nuclear weapons testing, Chernobyl, and world-wide reprocessing plants (~270 million curies or ~9.9 E+18 Becquerel).

Source: http://akiomatsumura.com

A recent quote in the Japan Times says it all, from Hiroshi Tasaka, who has a doctorate in nuclear engineering and is now a professor at Tama University, “The biggest risk during the meltdown crisis wasn’t the reactors themselves but the spent fuel pools sitting atop them, particularly the one above reactor 4, which still contains about 1,500 nuclear fuel assemblies;” “I would say the crisis just opened Pandora’s box“.


Fukushima Daiichi Reactor building 4 and exposed fuel pool
Image source: Asahi Shimbun

 

And to put the risk of collapse into perspective, here is a graphic showing earthquakes greater than magnitude 5.0 near Fukushima Japan since January 2011.
earthquakes-near-fukushima-japan-since-2011

 

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15 Comments

  1. Thank you for putting this into perspective. Your opening statement is absolutely correct: people have become so used to hearing about it since it happened that it has become a soundbite and no one has it in perspective. I’m sending this article out to everyone I know.

  2. Truly piss poor engineering.

    They put ‘spent’ fuel rods and water above ground?

    Step 1: Dig a big hole.
    Step 2: Line with several feet of reinforced concrete and a water barrier to protect the concrete. It will be there for a *long* time.
    Step 3: Install backup generators that work when wet or keep them from getting wet.

    This could end up being far worse than the nuclear power that USAF gave Japan in 1945.

    Where are the criminal charges?

    Be well.

    1. i think the best idea would be to construct an enclosure around it and than fill that with water, so its water tight.. take the whole enclosure down, with the fuel pool in it then, sink it out in the ocean.. that way it could never melt down and its sealed shut.. kinda double bagging..

    2. Mortimer,

      Your outline is the right way to deal with spent fuel. Indeed, there are a number of such deep underground pools already where fuel is stored. The reason spent fuel is stored inside a reactor building is that, ironically, SAFETY regulations make it incredibly hard to TRANSPORT the fuel rods anywhere. If you never leave the reactor containment building, then these regulations don’t apply.

      Not the first time that government regulations have had unintended consequences.

  3. I believe that their culture/DNA has a-lot to do with it (saving face). Unfortunately, that fact may carry a heavy toll in human life, be it slow cancers or quicker…

    1. Further, – capping it is far from easy.
      It requires human intervention to produce a building that will withstand the ongoing earthquakes. The complex is too radiative to allow humans to spend more than 1 day in areas they would be required to be. This 1 day is one day radiation exposure in a lifetime.

  4. This is not the same as Chernobyl.
    It is on back fill, soft sand earth on the edge of the ocean.
    Covering it like Chernobyl was not an option.
    Much has been argued, debated, and several good engineering ideas have been discussed daily for over a year on other sites. Enenews.com is one to check.
    This one event is what truly woke me up.
    I went out and purchased as much pre-Fuku food and medicine that I could afford. Even spent all my vacation pay on it. It wasn’t much but it was a start.
    I know every fruit and vegy, piece of meat and dairy product I consume these days has higher levels of radiation than previous years. And every year it will get higher. It is accumulative. External exposure is one thing, internal digesting and inhaling is a whole other animal. So the pre Fuku food sits in storage in case of the need to ‘detox from current levels.
    In Norway even to this day, they have to take their sheep indoors and feed them non-Chernobyl contaminated grain and hay, for about three months, to “Fodder Down” the cesium levels to a legal acceptable limit for sale. It’s true.
    Any one that says a little radiation is good for you should do more studying. Any one that compares plane rides and bananas to eating strontium should do more studying, and Any one that takes the extreme and says we will all be dead soon and it is the end of the world, should do more studying.
    The levels are going up folks, not down. And they increase every day in different parts of the world. It’s called a jet stream. We all have a little Chernobyl in us and now Fukushima also.
    YES there will be more cancers in the future, is that really the consolation prize for all the repeatative stements that sound the rhetoric –
    “No immediate health dangers”
    For me, I know that no matter what I do. I am being Fuku’ed.
    It is a given that I am learning to live with.
    It is not for me, but my grandchildren that I am sad about.
    If they do not become sterile, they will probably become ill.
    The foods that help eliminate these toxins from our bodies are taken from us too. All the seaweeds and salt water water raised Chorella and Spiralina.
    When I first came to the survivalist boards it was refreshing to read others thoughts on survival. It gave me hope, at least I could pretend if I gardened and filtered water and knew how to can food and start fires I had a fighters chance.
    Fukushima is a game changer.
    Sometimes I just pretend it isn’t there.
    And some days I want to scream to the world to wake up.
    Thank you Ken for reminding us.
    It is the gift that will keep on giving/killing.
    Prepare indeed, however you can…
    Get your green houses up and water filters in place,
    Take care and educate yourself on this topic with a wide variety of factual information and start dealing with it, or pretend it is not true and go out and buy more beans band aides and bullets.
    Radiation couldn’t care less how many of those things you have.

  5. Fukashima 1 reactor is unapproachable – the radiation levels are too high.
    Fukashima 2 is in perilous condition. There is a leak in the containment vessel. Water has been poured in continuously and been leaking out – somewhere. The fuel rods for reactor two have melted down and are in the bottom of the containment vessel. There is only 2 feet of water covering this melt. There should be 33 feet. Entering the containment area of reactor 2 would result in death in 10 minutes.
    Fukashima 3 is unapproachable – radiation levels are too high. This building blew up with a tremendous explosion. There is a 35 ton crane normally used to remove the fuel assemblies in on out of the reactor into the fuel pool. This has fallen into the fuel pool. There are damaged fuel assemblies in the fuel pool. They can be seen in images taken from above.
    Fukashima 4 holds 1535 fuel assemblies – 6000 fuel rods. The building is in perilous condition.

    There is no current technology available to address the problems at Fukashima. A solution will have to be invented. Radioactive proof electronics will need to be invented to allow remote robots to work in highly contaminated areas. A solution could take 50 years to be implemented.
    Tepco have publicly acknowledged this.

    All the fuel roads in plants 1, 2 and 3 have melted down and are in the bottom of the reactor containment vessels.

    Engineers on site knew within 12 hours that plant 1 was in meltdown. They conveyed this information to Tepco head office. Tepco head office did not tell the Japanese Prime Minister this fact. It may have actually been that some mid level manager did not even tell Tepco management staff of the meltdown.

    13 hours after the Tsunami, Tepco officials told the Prime Minister that pressure had built up in the reactor at plant 1 and that radioactive material would need to be released to air to lessen the pressure to prevent an explosion. They did not tell the Prime Minister that meltdown was occurring. The Prime Minister suspected that Tepco officials were not telling him the whole truth and after the plants exploded he went to Fukashima directly to speak to the on site engineers. He was shocked.

    The earthquake damaged the reactors much more seriously than Tepco has let on. Onsite engineers reported cooling pipes being ripped off containment vessel areas by the quake. Around 9 hours after the quake and Tsunami the radiation levels rose to high levels in the plant1 and 1 control room. A team was sent in to check the containment vessel area. They found earthquake physical damage. Later on Plant 1 exploded and caused considerably more damage.

    After the plant explosions, radiation air release emissions increased to hazardous levels. Fuel rod pools had lost water and some of these rods were exposed.
    Tepco and the local engineers decided to abandon the plant. The Prime Minister went to site and ordered that water had to be restored to fuel pools to stop the radiation leaks. – at whatever cost – a suicide mission.
    Tepco employees under sixty years were sent from site and the remainder risked their lives to stem the radiation releases. Later Military personal and fire department staff did the same. Only those over 40 years old who already had children were eligible.

    10 days after the disaster started and building explosions brought media attention to high level, Tepco and the Japanese government asked for U.S. Help. The U.S. sent a team from the U.S. N.R.C. They initially interviewed the Tepco officials. The team were suspicious of what they were being told and so did a flyover of the sight. What they saw shocked them. They immediately raised a report to the U.S. government who responded by drawing up an immediate plan to evacuate the 90,000 U.S. citizens from japan and issuing an edict to all U.S. citizens to get at least 50 miles away from Fukashima. This in turn shocked the Japanese government because they realized this would cause panic among the Japanese citizens and they would have a huge refugee problem on their hands. The U.S. report was watered down.

    The stories go on and on.

  6. Japan is toast. I figure they are lending the IMF $60 billion they don’t have as a down payment for the influx of Japanese about to go to any country other than Japan.

  7. Good story, scary but good.

    If anyone want to track the Radiation levels this is a good site.

    http://www.radiationnetwork.com/index.htm

    All done with private counters so no .gov BS interference. Not surprisingly, the DOE/NRC took all public reading Rad meters offline about a month after this occurred. I can’t find any official real time readings.

  8. Ken,
    Thank you for bringing this most disturbing subject back to the forefront. We have been treated to all the sound-bites that the MSM is willing to sacrifice over Fukushima, therefore it is up to the populace to keep the story alive. For the sake of our children and their children as well, a united front must confront the Japanese and perhaps, take over the situation. There are experts around the world who could and should be lending their voices to this problem, yet the Japanese are, with their ridiculous “saving face” culture, making a complete mockery of the accident, to the extent of forcing young children to consume food containing enough beta radiation to set off a RAD detector at a truck weigh station.

    Again, I would like to thank Ken for his continued attention to this situation.

    Regards,
    Ancona

  9. Sobering and you hear nothing in the mainstream press !
    This is just another indication of how serious the situation really is!

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