Tag Archives: Nuclear power

Arnold Gundersen, Fairewinds.com Video Reports on Japan’s Current Situation

3 Apr
Color photograph of the Three Mile Island nucl...

A photo of Three Mile Island from the 1970s

Copyright 2011-3011 By Alternative News Forum, All Rights Reserved. Updated daily.

4.2.11 Update:

Vermont based nuclear radiation expert and former Three Mile Island contractor Arnold Gundersen runs a website which posts revealing and factual information on the actual radioactive conditions emerging from the Fukushima Nuclear Reactor explosions and meltdown. His website is here and I highly recommend all readers watch his videos:

http://fairewinds.com/

The Plutonium Report: Radioactive Water, Core Damage Being Minimized by Tokyo Electric

3 Apr

Copyright 2011-3011 Alternative News Forum, All Rights Reserved.

This is a MUST SEE video report from Fairewinds.com on what’s really happening in Japan:

Tags: fairewinds.com, plutonium, Japan reactor actual conditions, radioactive seawater Japan, radiation leaks Japan

“Meltdown At Three Mile Island” Six Part Video Documentary of the Worst Nuclear Accident in U.S. History

29 Mar
President Jimmy Carter leaving Three Mile Isla...

President Jimmy Carter's Motorcade leaves Three Mile Island in 1979 after a tour of the site

Copyright 2011-3011 Alternative News Forum, All Rights Reserved.

In a stroke of irony, today, as we learn of the partial meltdown of the nuclear reactors at Fukushima, is the 32nd anniversary of the nuclear accident at Three Mile Island. It took place on March 28th 1979.

In the opening moments of that event, news reports insisted there was no threat to people living in the vicinity. These re-assuring public statements soon faded as the full extent of the emerging crisis became known. Nearby neighborhoods and towns were then evacuated. But three precious hours of wrong news reports from bewildered public officials representing Three Mile Island cost credibility and evacuation time, exposing many to low levels of radiation.

Have we learned from the experience 32 years ago at Three Mile Island? Examine the links below and judge for yourself. I saw immediately the very same pattern of minimizing, denial, misrepresentation of data and refusal to act in accordance with the real dangers occurring at Fukushima as in the opening moments of Three Mile Island. Nuclear power is just too unpredictable and unsafe, given the earth changes scenarios that are now unfolding around the world. These plants should all be deactivated and decommissioned NOW, not later, when the next catastrophe takes place.

Nuclear power is NOT more important than human lives. That’s the bottom line.

Chase Kyla Hunter

Nuclear Energy: The Dire Legacy of Three Mile Island

Today Is the 32nd Anniversary of the Nuclear Accident at Three Mile Island

Tags: three mile island, three mile island nuclear accident, nuclear disaster meltdown

Pacific Jet Stream Forecasts, Flowcharts, Monitor Radiation, USA Europe Canada Mexico

26 Mar
Clouds along a jet stream over Canada.

The Pacific Jet Stream Aerial View

Copyright 2011-3011 Alternative News Forum, All Rights Reserved.

Top Radiation Forecasting Sites:

http://www.woweather.com/weather/news/fukushima?LANG=us&VAR=webcam&SA…

http://www.jaif.or.jp/english/

http://www.rivm.nl/milieuportaal/dossier/meetnetten/radioactiviteit/resultaten/

http://www.radiationnetwork.com/

http://www.blackcatsystems.com/RadMap/map.html

http://www.epa.gov (click on radiation update)

http://www.irsn.fr/EN/Pages/home.aspx

http://www.nucleartourist.com/

http://www.stuk.fi/index_en.html

http://www.mext.go.jp/english/radioactivity_level/detail/1303962.htm

http://www.nisa.meti.go.jp/english/index.html

http://www.rivm.nl/milieuportaal/dossier/meetnetten/radioactiviteit/resultaten/

http://www.yle.fi/tekstitv/html/P867_02.html

http://www.mapion.co.jp/topics/genpatu/

http://strahlenbelastung.wo-wann-wer.de/

dutch radiation monitoring:

http://www.rivm.nl/milieuportaal/dossier/meetnetten/radioactiviteit/resultaten/

swiss radiation monitoring:

https://www.naz.ch/en/aktuell/zeitverlaeufe.html

Finland radiation monitoring:

http://www.yle.fi/tekstitv/html/P160_01.html

http://www.yle.fi/tekstitv/html/P867_02.html

French radiation monitoring: (thanks to youtube user: RehKurts ! )

http://sws.irsn.fr/sws/mesure/index

http://www.irsn.fr/FR/Documents/france.htm

jet stream forecasting:

http://squall.sfsu.edu/crws/jetstream.html

http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/CT/animate.arctic.color.0.html

http://nowcoast.noaa.gov/

http://www.srh.noaa.gov/srh/tropicalwx/satpix/nwpac_ir4_loop.php

http://www.stormsurfing.com/cgi/display_alt.cgi?a=glob_250

Related Articles

Japan Radiation, Pacific Jet Stream, USA Health and Safety Update 3.26.11

26 Mar
Map of Fukushima Prefecture, Japan.

The Fukushima Prefecture

Copyright 2011-3011 Alternative News Forum, All Rights Reserved.

News from Japan about the progress of the clean up after recent Fukushima tsunami related nuclear accidents and explosions is mixed, and often conflicting. Here is the latest, compiled from diverse sources. This post will be updated throughout the day, so visit the page and reload for the latest news.

Radiation Levels in Japanese Seawater Spike Off Coast of Fukushima

Radiation Levels Rise at Fukushima As Government States Situation is Stable

Radiation Levels Up, Japanese Government Reveals Missteps

French Nuclear Expert Discusses Possibility of Total Meltdown at Fukushima

“The situation at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant is still very grave,” said Prime Minister Naoto Kan at a news conference. “We are still not at a stage where we can be optimistic.”

Earlier News Report From Right After the First Explosions – Note Commentary!

radiation forecasting links:

http://www.woweather.com/weather/news/fukushima?LANG=us&VAR=webcam&SA…

http://www.jaif.or.jp/english/

http://www.rivm.nl/milieuportaal/dossier/meetnetten/radioactiviteit/resultaten/

http://www.radiationnetwork.com/

http://www.blackcatsystems.com/RadMap/map.html

http://www.epa.gov (click on radiation update)

http://www.irsn.fr/EN/Pages/home.aspx

http://www.nucleartourist.com/

http://www.stuk.fi/index_en.html

http://www.mext.go.jp/english/radioactivity_level/detail/1303962.htm

http://www.nisa.meti.go.jp/english/index.html

http://www.rivm.nl/milieuportaal/dossier/meetnetten/radioactiviteit/resultaten/

http://www.yle.fi/tekstitv/html/P867_02.html

http://www.mapion.co.jp/topics/genpatu/

http://strahlenbelastung.wo-wann-wer.de/

dutch radiation monitoring:

http://www.rivm.nl/milieuportaal/dossier/meetnetten/radioactiviteit/resultaten/

swiss radiation monitoring:

https://www.naz.ch/en/aktuell/zeitverlaeufe.html

Finland radiation monitoring:

http://www.yle.fi/tekstitv/html/P160_01.html

http://www.yle.fi/tekstitv/html/P867_02.html

French radiation monitoring: (thanks to youtube user: RehKurts ! )

http://sws.irsn.fr/sws/mesure/index

http://www.irsn.fr/FR/Documents/france.htm

jet stream forecasting:

http://squall.sfsu.edu/crws/jetstream.html

http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/CT/animate.arctic.color.0.html

http://nowcoast.noaa.gov/

http://www.srh.noaa.gov/srh/tropicalwx/satpix/nwpac_ir4_loop.php

http://www.stormsurfing.com/cgi/display_alt.cgi?a=glob_250

ALERT: US News Media Under-Reporting Actual Reactor Conditions in Japan, Nuclear Fission Possible

24 Mar
Nuclear Fuel Assembly from US operated Reactors.

Nuclear Fuel Rods

Copyright 2011-3011 Alternative News Forum, All Rights Reserved.

Alert: Listen very carefully to the narration of this first video clip. This Japanese news anchor is referring to exposed spent nuclear fuel rods, and the steam is rising from the pools where those rods are located in at least 4 locations. The US news media has now moved on to other stories, but this story IS NOT OVER. The danger for clouds of radioactive steam, mixed with weather precipitation, to float over the USA via the jet stream, in successive waves, over days to come, is not over. Here is the video clip:

Neutron Beams Observed 13 Times At Fukushima Complex

Treating Radiation Exposure: How to Detox Your Body of Depleted Uranium With Herbs, Nutrition, Natural Supplements

19 Mar
The radiation warning symbol (trefoil).

Image via Wikipedia

Copyright 2011-3011 Alternative News Forum, All Rights Reserved.

A site guest submitted this information, below, today in a comments field on 3.19.2011 and it seemed thorough and timely. I am rep-posting it for everyone.

Residues, the Effects of Radiation, and Radioactive Contamination
These Herbs and foods can also be used for many other Health challenges– This sure gives me a lot of peace of mind. ~J

It’s sad but true that there are thousands of scientific references

and medical studies out there on the fact that radiation and

radioactivity can harm you, yet despite millions of dollars spent by

the government to study radiation, virtually nothing is available

about a detoxification diet or nutritional supplements you might use

if you are exposed to radioactive contamination.

Here’s some of the information we do know from the only book in the

world on the topic. Keep this information in the back of your mind

as it may one day help save you or someone you know.

Most people are aware taking potassium iodide (KI) or potassium

iodate (KIO3) tablets will help block your thyroid gland from

absorbing radioactive iodine should there ever be a dirty bomb

explosion or nuclear power plant mishap such as the Three Mile

Island incident. In 1999, another such accident happened in

Tokaimura, Japan where several individuals died from radiation

exposure in a fuel processing facility.

What people don’t recognize is that potassium iodide or iodate

tablets only protect the thyroid gland and do not provide protection

from any other radiation exposure, so taking them should not give

you a false sense of security. It’s important to detox your body

after radioactive exposure!

One question is, what do you do if KI or KIO3 tablets aren’t

available during an emergency? Interestingly enough, according to

research by Ken Miller, health physicist at the Hershey Medical

Center, he found that an adult could get a blocking dose of stable

iodine by painting 8 ml of a 2 percent tincture of Iodine on the

abdomen or forearm approximately 2 hours prior to I-131

contamination. Potassium iodine tablets are best, but if they’re not

available this is the next best thing.

An entirely different problem arises after you’ve been exposed to

radioactive contamination because now you have to get rid of any

radioactive particles you may have ingested through the air you

breathed, water you drank, or food you ate. Some people suggest

Epson salt, Clorox or clay baths to remove any residues on your skin

and to leach out any heavy metals you may have absorbed, but the big

worry is internal contamination. To gain some insights into what to

do, we have to turn to the story of the atomic bombing of Nagasaki.

At the time of the atomic bombing, Tatsuichiro Akizuki, M.D. was

Director of the Department of Internal Medicine at St. Francis’s

Hospital in Nagasaki and he fed his staff and patients a strict diet of brown rice, miso and tamari soy

soup, wakame, kombu and other seaweed, Hokkaido pumpkin, and sea

salt. He also prohibited the

consumption of sugar and sweets since they suppress the

immune system.

By imposing this diet on his staff and patients, no one succumbed to

radiation poisoning whereas the occupants of hospitals located much

further away from the blast incident suffered severe radiation

fatalities.

Much of this positive result has to do with the fact that the sea vegetables contain substances that bind

radioactive particles and escort them out of the body. This is why

seaweed sales usually skyrocket after radiation disasters, and why

various seaweeds and algae are typically used to treat radiation

victims.

In Chernobyl, for instance, spirulina

was used to help save many children from radiation poisoning. By

taking 5 grams of spirulina a day for 45 days, the Institute of

Radiation Medicine in Minsk even proved that children on this

protocol experienced enhanced immune systems, T-cell counts and

reduced radioactivity. Israeli scientists have since treated

Chernobyl children with doses of natural beta

carotene from Dunaliella algae and proved that it helped

normalize their blood chemistry. Chlorella

algae, a known immune system builder and heavy metal

detoxifier, has also shown radioprotective effects. Because they

bind heavy metals, algae should therefore be consumed after exposure

to any type of radioactive contamination.

In 1968 a group of Canadian researchers at McGill University of

Montreal, headed by Dr. Stanley Skoryna, actually set out to devise

a method to counteract the effects of nuclear fallout. The key

finding from their studies was that sea

vegetables contained a polysaccharide substance, called sodium alginate, which selectively bound

radioactive strontium and eliminated it from the body.

Sodium alginate is found in many seaweeds, especially kelp, and

since that time the Russians have been seriously researching the use

of their own kelps from Vladivlostok, from which they have isolated

the polysaccharide U-Fucoidan, which is another radioactive

detoxifier. Because miso soup was so

effective in helping prevent radiation sickness, the Japanese have

also done research identifying the presence of an active ingredient

called zybicolin, discovered in 1972,

which acts as a binding agent to also detoxify

and eliminate radioactive elements (such as strontium) and

other pollutants from the body.

The kelps and algaes aren’t the only natural foods with

radio-detoxifying effects. In terms of fluids to drink, black and green tea have shown “radioprotective

effects” whether consumed either before or after exposure

to radiation. This anti-radiation effect was observed in several

Japanese studies, and studies from China also suggest that the

ingredients in tea are radioactive antagonists.

In short, after any sort of radioactive exposure you want to be

eating seaweeds and algaes along with almost any type of commercial

heavy metal chelating formula to bind radioactive particles and help

escort them out of the body. Whether you’re worried about depleted

uranium, plutonium or other isotopes, this is the wise thing to do

which can possibly help, and certainly won’t hurt. Many nutritional

supplements have been developed for the purpose of detoxifying heavy

metals, most of which contain the algaes and plant fibers and other

binding substances.

Basically, an anti-radiation diet should focus

on the following foods:
· Miso soup

· Spirulina, chlorella and the algaes (kelp, etc.)

· Brassica vegetables and high beta carotene vegetables

· Beans and lentils

· Potassium, calcium and mineral rich foods

· High nucleotide content foods to assist in cellular repair

including spirulina, chlorella, algae, yeast, sardines, liver,

anchovies and mackerel

· Cod liver oil and olive oil

· Avoid sugars and sweets and wheat
· A good multivitamin/multimineral supplement

Yet another benefit of the sea vegetables rarely discussed is their

high mineral content, which is a bonus in the case of radioactive

exposure. Consuming natural iodine, such as in the seaweeds, helps

prevent the uptake of iodine-131 while iron inhibits the absorption

of plutonium-238 and plutonium-239. Vitamin B-12 inhibits cobalt-60

uptake (used in nuclear medicine), zinc inhibits zinc-65 uptake and

sulfur is preventative for sulfur-35 (a product of nuclear reactors)

incorporation by the body.

Since nuclear workers are potentially exposed to radioactive sulfur,

this means that workers in the atomic power industry need a higher

content of sulfur in their diet. MSM

supplements provide a source of dietary sulfur, but thiol

supplements such as cysteine, lipoic acid and

glutathione serve double-duty in this area because they

help detoxify the body and attack all sorts of other health problems

as well.

The immune system is usually hit hard after radiation exposure, and

a number of steps can be taken to help prevent opportunistic

infections after a radioactive incident. Though the full dimensions

of the protective mechanism is still unknown, Siberian

ginseng is one form of ginseng that exerts a definite

radioprotective effect and has been demonstrated to lessen the side

effects of radiation. It was widely distributed by the Soviet Union

to those exposed Chernobyl radiation and is commonly used to help

cancer patients undergoing radiation therapy.

Consuming Reishi mushrooms is another

proven way to bolster your immune system after radiation exposure

and helps reduce the damage from radiation. It’s been used to

decrease radiation sickness in animals and help them recover faster

after potentially deadly exposure.
Panax ginseng has prevented

hemorrhaging after radiation exposure, prevents bone marrow death

and stimulates blood cell formation, so it’s another supplement to

add to one’s protocol. In short, yeasts, beta glucans, bee pollen

and various forms of ginseng have all been shown to bolster the

immune system after radiation incidents. In terms of radiation

burns, aloe vera has a proven ability

to treat serious radiation burns and offers other radioprotective

effects, and can easily be grown in your house.

The amino acid L-Glutamine can be used

to help repair the intestine in case of the gastrointestinal

syndrome usually suffered due to radiation exposure, and a variety

of substances can help rebuild blood cells to prevent hematopoietic

syndrome. Those particular foods include beet

juice, liver extract, spleen extract, and shark alkyglycerols.

Most oncologists don’t know that shark liver oil, with

alkyglycerols, can help platelet counts rebound in days..

Depleted uranium is currently in the journalistic spotlight because

US weapons are made from this material, and after being fired leave

a legacy of depleted uranium dust in the environment, which anyone

can absorb. Because the kidneys are usually the first organs to show

chemical damage upon uranium exposure, military manuals suggest

doses or infusions of sodium bicarbonate

to help alkalinize the urine if this happens. This makes the uranyl

ion less kidney-toxic and promotes excretion of the nontoxic uranium

carbonate complex.

In areas contaminated by depleted uranium dusts, it therefore makes

sense to switch to drinking slightly alkaline

water and to favor a non-acidic diet

to assist in this detoxification. Any of the heavy metal

detoxifiers, such as miso soup, chlorella, spirulina and seaweeds,

are also commonsense warranted.

Another thing you can do is use homeopathics

for radiation exposure. People commonly argue over whether

homeopathics work or not, but if you assume the position that they

produce no results whatsoever then you must also assume that they

certainly won’t hurt you, which means the only loss from using them

is a few dollars. Frankly, there are countless cases and

double-blind studies where homeopathic tinctures do provoke physical

healing effects in the body. Therefore they are a viable adjunct

treatment option. One homeopathic, in particular, is URANIUM NITRICUM (nitrate of uranium) which

homeopaths suggest should be used in cases of depleted uranium

exposure or uranium poisoning. Not just soldiers or civilians

exposed to battlefield dusts, but uranium miners and radiation

workers may find it quite useful.

While we’ve discussed just a few of the many supplements and

protocols you can use to help detox the body of the lingering

results of radioactive contamination, including the residues of

depleted uranium, the last thing that might be of interest is that

there is a plant that is a natural geiger counter. The spiderwort

plant is so sensitive to changes in radiation levels (its petals

change color upon exposure) that it’s often used as a natural

radiation detector (dosimeter), just as they use canaries in mines

as detectors of poisonous gas. Some people like knowing that they

have an ongoing monitoring system for radiation in the environment,

and this is just another tip available in  “How

to Neutralize the Harmful Effects of Radiation or Radioactive

Exposure.”

See also: Three Ways to Treat Radiation Exposure Naturally

Updated: Japan Fukushima Nuclear Plant, A Fourth Explosion, Airborne Radiation Now Confirmed

15 Mar
In thermal nuclear reactors (LWRs in specific)...

Diagram: How Fuel Rods Work

Copyright 2011-3011 Alternative News Forum, All Rights Reserved.

There have now been a total of four devastating explosions at the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant north of Tokyo since the 9.0 earthquake late last Thursday in Japan. Radiation leakage has been confirmed, and the threat of radiation poisoning to people in the surrounding region is growing more serious by the hour.

Here are gathered facts and reports coming out of Japan as of early 3.15.11. These reports are from various international media sources, however the Canadian website for Globe and Mail has compiled the most timely information, for which I am deeply grateful. I have re-posted numerous items from their info-pages on radiation and the health of the human body. I am also advising readers to get familiar with live maps of the Pacific Jet Stream to observe how it blows over the continental USA.

it is now confirmed that radiation is leaking into the atmosphere in Japan. Here’s the link: http://www.foxnews.com/world/2011/03/15/japanese-nuclear-panic-rises-agency-says-radiation-leaking-atmosphere/

Also, we are learning that iodine tablets are sold out at online locations everywhere, and by the grace of God, another reasonable sized dose of POTASSIUM IODIDE, which is the type of iodine you would need to fight radiation sickness, occurs built into doses of SOLARAY Brand Twice Daily Multi-Vitamins. So if you cannot procure iodine tablets, stock up on this brand of multi-vitamin as an alternative. The dose may be small, but it is at least getting some of the right kind of iodine into your system.

Watch these videos:

3.13.11 Breaking: Japan Faces Nuclear Disaster As Radiation Levels Rise

Cited from the New York Times 3.14.11 1149 pm, Breaking Info:

“After an emergency cabinet meeting, the Japanese government told people living within 30 kilometers, about 18 miles, of the Daiichi plant to stay indoors, keep their windows closed and stop using air conditioning.

Mr. Kan, whose government was extraordinarily weak before the sequence of calamities struck the nation, told the Japanese people that “although this incident is of great concern, I ask you to react very calmly.” And in fact, there seemed to be little panic, but huge apprehension in a country where the drift of radioactivity brings up memories of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the haunting images of post-war Japan.

The two critical questions over the next day or so are how much radioactive material is spewed into the atmosphere, and where the winds carry it. Readings reported on Tuesday showed a spike of radioactivity around the plant that made the leakage categorically worse than in had been, with radiation levels measured at one point as high as 400 millisieverts an hour. Even 7 minutes of exposure at that level will reach the maximum annual dose that a worker at an American nuclear plant is allowed. And exposure for 75 minutes would likely lead to acute radiation sickness.

The extent of the public health risk depends on how long such elevated levels persist — they may have declined after the fire at No. 4 reactor was extinguished — as well as how far and fast the radioactive materials spread, and whether the limited evacuation plan announced by the government proves sufficient.

In Tokyo, 170 miles south of the plant, the metropolitan government said Tuesday it had detected radiation levels 20 times the usual above the city, though it stressed that that level posed no immediate health threat. In Ibaraki Prefecture, just south of Fukushima Prefecture where the plant is located, the amount of radiation reached 100 times the usual levels.”

How radiation affects the body

Published Tuesday, Mar. 15, 2011 1:04AM EDT

Radiation can target many parts of the body. Symptoms vary, with severity depending on dosage or length of exposure

The Risks of Radiation Exposure

Radiation’s Effect Depends on the Amount of Exposure

Cited: “Japanese authorities warned Wednesday morning that they believed that the population living in the area immediately surrounding the stricken nuclear reactors now faced a health risk from further increases in radiation leaks.

Authorities said that radiation levels there had surged to levels that will “clearly have impact on the human body.”

See http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-pacific-12732015

More than 100,000 people have been evacuated from homes near Fukushima.


There have been two explosions at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant in Japan, following Friday’s earthquake and tsunami, and a third reactor is reportedly at risk of fuel-rod meltdown.

How great a danger do these problems pose for people in Japan and further afield?

Has there been a leakage of radioactive material?

Yes. Local government officials in Fukushima say 190 people have been exposed to some radiation. An American warship, the USS Ronald Reagan, has detected low levels of radiation at a distance of 100 miles (161km) from the Fukushima plant.

How much radioactive material has escaped?

The Japanese authorities say only low levels of radiation have been detected outside the plant. The International Atomic Energy Agency has described it as a level four event on the International Nuclear and Radiological Event Scale (INES), which is used for an accident “with local consequences”. No abnormal levels of radiation have been detected in Russia.

What type of radioactive material has escaped?

There are reports of radioactive isotopes of caesium and iodine in the vicinity of the plant. Experts say it would be natural for radioactive isotopes of nitrogen and argon to have escaped as well. There is no evidence that any uranium or plutonium has escaped.

What harm do these radioactive materials cause?

Radioactive iodine could be harmful to young people living near the plant. After the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear disaster there were some cases of thyroid cancer as a result. However, people who were promptly issued with iodine tablets ought to be safe. Radioactive caesium, uranium and plutonium are harmful, but do not target any particular organ of the body. Radioactive nitrogen decays within seconds of its release, and argon poses no threat to health.

How did the radioactive materials escape?

There have been problems with cooling systems, causing the reactors to overheat. Production of steam has caused pressure to build up inside the reactor, so small amounts of steam have been deliberately released. Experts say that the presence in the steam of caesium and iodine – which are among the by-products of nuclear fission – suggests that the metal casing of some of the fuel rods has melted or broken. But the uranium fuel itself has a very high melting point so it is less likely to have melted, let alone vapourised.

Could radioactive materials have escaped by any other means?

The authorities have pumped sea water into three reactors. This water will be contaminated by its passage through the reactor, but it is currently unclear whether any of it has been released into the environment.

How long will any contamination last?

Radioactive iodine decays quite quickly. Most will have disappeared within a month. Radioactive caesium does not last long in the body – most has gone within a year. However, it lingers in the environment and can continue to present a problem for many years.

Has there been a meltdown?

The term “meltdown” is used in a variety of ways. As noted above, the reported detection of radioactive caesium and iodine may indicate that some of the metal casing enclosing the reactors’ uranium fuel has melted (a “fuel-rod meltdown”). However, there is as yet no indication that the uranium fuel itself has melted. Still less is there any indication of a “China Syndrome” where the fuel melts, gathers below the reactor and resumes a chain reaction, that enables it to melt everything in its way, and bore a path deep into the earth. If there were to be a serious meltdown, the Japanese reactor is supposed to be able to handle it, preventing the China Syndrome from taking place. Reports suggest that underneath the reactor, within the outer containment vessel, there is a concrete basin designed to capture and disperse any molten fuel.

Could there be a Chernobyl-like disaster?

Experts say this is highly unlikely. The chain reaction at all Fukushima reactors has ceased. The explosions that have occurred have taken place outside the steel and concrete containment vessels enclosing the reactors, which apparently remain solid. At Chernobyl an explosion exposed the core of the reactor to the air, and a fire raged for days sending its contents in a plume up into the atmosphere. At Fukushima the explosions – caused by hydrogen and oxygen vented from the reactor – have damaged only the roof and walls erected around the containment vessels.

Could there be a nuclear explosion?

No. A nuclear bomb and a nuclear reactor are different things.

What caused the hydrogen release from the reactor?

At high temperatures, steam can separate into hydrogen and oxygen in the presence of zirconium, the metal used for encasing the reactor fuel. This mixture is highly explosive.

How do iodine tablets work?

If the body has all the iodine it needs, it will not absorb further iodine from the atmosphere. The tablets fill the body up with non-radioactive iodine, which prevent it absorbing the radioactive iodine.

What kind of radiation levels have been recorded at Fukushima?

The Kyodo news agency reports that a radiation level of 1,557 microsieverts per hour was registered on Sunday. At this level, one hour’s exposure is roughly equivalent to one chest X-ray. Later measurements included 750 microsieverts per hour at 0200 on Monday, and 20 microsieverts per hour at 1145. The last of these measurements is not much to worry about – on a long-haul flight passengers are exposed to about five microsieverts per hour. Furthermore, moving away from the source of radiation, measurements would quickly tail off. Five or 10km away from the plant, the radiation level would be significantly lower.

Is any level of exposure to radiation safe?

In some parts of the world, natural background radiation is significantly higher than others – for example in Cornwall, in south-west England. And yet people live in Cornwall, and many others gladly visit the area. Similarly, every international air flight exposes passengers to higher than normal levels of radiation – and yet people still fly, and cabin crews spend large amounts of time exposed to this radiation. Patients in hospitals regularly undergo X-rays. Scientists dispute whether any level of exposure to radiation is entirely safe, but exposure to some level of radiation – whether at normal background levels or higher – is a fact of life.

How do Fukushima’s problems affect the rest of the world?

It depends on how much radiation is released. At present, the IAEA says the effects are of a “local” nature.

Audio

Live update: Mark MacKinnon reports from radiation testing in Japan

Mark MacKinnon

Globe and Mail Update
Published Sunday, Mar. 13, 2011 9:49AM EDT
Last updated Sunday, Mar. 13, 2011 3:58PM EDT

The Globe’s east Asia correspondent witnesses Japanese residents tested for radiation after fears of leaks at nearby nuclear plant

More related to this story

More Interactives & Infographics

Is It Possible That Radioactive Fallout Could Enter The U.S. Via the Jet Stream?

15 Mar

Copyright 2011-3011 By Alternative News Forum, All Rights Reserved.

I found this post on another blog this morning and I am re-posting it as an introduction to this topic. What I am stunned by is that so few others are blogging about this topic! Where are your heads bloggers? Today is not the day to blog about recipes, your kid’s new gadgets, or your spouse’s snoring habits.

Today is the day to get your heads up out of the sand and begin educating yourself like mad about radioactive fallout, and how you can safely live through a possible situation where it floats right over your city.

Call me lo0nie, call me alarmist, call me anything you want to: I DON’T CARE. But call me concerned as hell right now about the very CLEAR and PRESENT DANGER for Americans of radioactive fallout floating over the US, posed by what is happening in Japan. They are literally losing control of their nuclear facilities. Read my earlier posts on this topic to get up to speed:

http://alligatorfarm.wordpress.com/2011/03/14/new-hydrogen-explosion-japan/

Meltdown Alert at Japan Reactor

Nuclear Expert: Radiation Could Spread To US West Coast: http://t.co/Uyfi5aV # 3 hours ago

Here’s the re-post, then on to my own research and updates.

The meltdown occurring at the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant in Japan is growing in intensity.  Out of its six reactors, #1 and #3 have exploded and have ejected their radioactive dust and steam into the atmosphere.  Japanese authorities also claim that the radioactive rods in reactor #2 are  now fully exposed and on the verge of critical mass.  Reactors #4, #5, and #6 have been shut down.  (Could they be the next ones to go?)  This incident is already bigger than Chernobyl.  The radiation emitted from the reactors at the Fukushima plant will, most likely, spread to the United States by way of the jet stream.

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Breaking: New Hydrogen Explosion Rocks Nuclear Power Plant 135 Miles North of Tokyo, Second Quake Now Predicted

14 Mar

Copyright 2011-3011 By Alternative News Forum, All Rights Reserved.

This is a breaking story first spotted on The Bloomberg News website.This post will be updated every 15 minutes. There is now a 20 mile exclusion zone around the plant which exploded. The plant is located 135 miles north of Tokyo Japan. 22 people have already tested positive for radiation exposure close the the plant. That number is expected to rise. Government officials in Japan are urging calm.

Japan nuclear alert: before and after

A screen grab taken from news footage by Japanese public broadcaster NHK shows the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power station before (bottom) and after (top) a hydrogen explosion at the number three reactor of the plant, the yellow ring in the top image shows the collapsed building after the explosion. Photograph: -/AFP/Getty Images

Japanese Government Urges Calm After Second Explosion Rocks Nuclear Plant

Japan Nuclear Crisis Worsens As Country Braces for Second Huge Earthquake

Live Video: Latest Hydrogen Explosion at Fukushima Daiichi Reactor #3

From Twitter:

#twcot #tcot Fox News Radio just reported that a Hydrogen explosion has occured at a Japanese Nuclear Power pl… (cont) http://deck.ly/~JeFlm

Reuters Breaking coverage:

Blast Strikes Japan Plant, 2,000 Bodies Found on Coasts

Huffington Post Breaking Coverage:

Fukushima Explosion: Japan Nuclear Plant Blast Believed To Be Hydrogen Explosion

Cited: “Japan’s chief cabinet secretary says a hydrogen explosion has occurred at Unit 3 of Japan’s stricken Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear plant. The blast was similar to an earlier one at a different unit of the facility.

Yukio Edano says people within a 12-mile (20-kilometer) radius were ordered inside following Monday’s. AP journalists felt the explosion 30 miles (50 kilometers) away.”

Edano says the reactor’s inner containment vessel holding nuclear rods is intact, allaying some fears of the risk to the environment and public.

Breaking video of the most recent hydrogen explosion at Japan nuclear power plant:

Yesterday’s First Explosion, video coverage:

From the Bloomberg website, 45 minutes ago [8:20 pm PT ] :

A hydrogen explosion occurred at Tokyo Electric Power Co.’s Fukushima Dai-Ichi No. 3 reactor at 11:01 a.m. local time today, Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry said.

Tokyo Electric spokesman Daisuke Hirose said smoke was seen rising from the reactor. Japan’s Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency reported earlier pressure at the reactor had fallen and Prime Minister Naoto Kan said the situation remains a concern.

The pressure declined after rising earlier today, Hidehiko Nishiyama, deputy director-general at the safety agency, said at a media briefing. The Fukushima Dai-Ichi station lies 220 kilometers (135 miles) north of the Japanese capital.

Asia’s largest utility is seeking to avoid a meltdown of at least two reactors at the nuclear power station by flooding them with water and boric acid to eliminate the potential for a catastrophic release of radiation into the atmosphere. The station lost power to keep the reactor core cool after the March 11 earthquake, the largest ever recorded in Japan.

On March 12 a hydrogen leak caused a blast that destroyed the walls of the No. 1 reactor. Four workers were injured in the explosion, while no damage was reported to the container holding the reactor’s radioactive core, according to Tokyo Electric.

Winds in the area of the Fukushima plant are blowing at less than 10 kilometers (6 miles) per hour generally in an northeasterly and northerly direction, according to a 9 a.m. update from the Japan Meteorological Agency today.

To contact the reporters on this story: Yuji Okada in Tokyo at yokada6@bloomberg.net; Shigeru Sato in Tokyo at ssato10@bloomberg.net;

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Amit Prakash at aprakash1@bloomberg.net.

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-03-14/hydrogen-explosion-occurs-at-nuclear-power-plant-135-miles-north-of-tokyo.html