By Mike Whitney
If spent fuel rods catch fire from lack of coolant, the intense heat will lift radiation plumes high into the atmosphere that will drift around the world. That’s the nightmare scenario, clouds of radioactive material showering the planet with lethal toxins for months on end. And, according to the Central Institute for Meteorology and Geodynamics of Vienna, that deadly process has already begun. The group told New Scientist that:
“Japan’s damaged nuclear plant in Fukushima has been emitting radioactive iodine and caesium at levels approaching those seen in the aftermath of the Chernobyl accident in 1986. Austrian researchers have used a worldwide network of radiation detectors – designed to spot clandestine nuclear bomb tests – to show that iodine-131 is being released at daily levels 73 per cent of those seen after the 1986 disaster. The daily amount of caesium-137 released from Fukushima Daiichi is around 60 per cent of the amount released from Chernobyl. (“New Scientist”, March 24 —thanks to Michael Collins “They said it wasn’t like Chernobyl and they were wrong”)
So, volatile radioactive elements are already being lofted into the jet stream and spread across continents. What’s different here is that the quantities are much larger than they were at Chernobyl, thus, the dangers are far greater. According to the same group of scientists “the Fukushima plant has around 1760 tonnes of fresh and used nuclear fuel on site” (while) “the Chernobyl reactor had only 180 tonnes.” The troubles at one nuclear facility now pose a direct threat to humans and other species everywhere. Is this what Obama meant when he called nuclear power, “Safe and green?”
This from CNN:
“Authorities in Japan raised the prospect Friday of a likely breach in the all-important containment vessel of the No. 3 reactor at the stricken Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, a potentially ominous development in the race to prevent a large-scale release of radiation.”
And this from the New York Times:
“A senior nuclear executive who insisted on anonymity but has broad contacts in Japan said that there was a long vertical crack running down the side of the reactor vessel itself. The crack runs down below the water level in the reactor and has been leaking fluids and gases, he said….
“There is a definite, definite crack in the vessel — it’s up and down and it’s large,” he said. “The problem with cracks is they do not get smaller.” (Thanks to Washington’s Blog)
The media has switched into full “BP Oil Spill-mode”, making every effort to minimize the disaster and to soothe the public with half-truths and disinformation. The goal is to conceal the scale of the catastrophe and protect the nuclear industry. It’s another case of profits over people. Still, the truth is available for those who are willing to sift through the lies. Radiation has turned up in the Tokyo water supply, imports of milk, vegetable and fruit from four prefectures in the vicinity of Fukushima have been banned, and the evacuation zone around the plant has widened to an 18 mile radius.
Also, monitors have detected tiny radioactive particles which have spread from the reactor site across the Pacific to North America, the Atlantic and Europe…According to Reuters: “It’s only a matter of days before it disperses in the entire northern hemisphere,” said Andrea Stahl, a senior scientist at the Norwegian Institute for Air Research.”
Here’s more from Brian Moench, MD:
“Administration spokespeople continuously claim “no threat” from the radiation reaching the US from Japan, just as they did with oil hemorrhaging into the Gulf. Perhaps we should all whistle “Don’t worry, be happy” in unison. A thorough review of the science, however, begs a second opinion.
That the radiation is being released 5,000 miles away isn’t as comforting as it seems…. Every day, the jet stream carries pollution from Asian smoke stacks and dust from the Gobi Desert to our West Coast, contributing 10 to 60 percent of the total pollution breathed by Californians, depending on the time of year. Mercury is probably the second most toxic substance known after plutonium. Half the mercury in the atmosphere over the entire US originates in China. It, too, is 5,000 miles away. A week after a nuclear weapons test in China, iodine 131 could be detected in the thyroid glands of deer in Colorado, although it could not be detected in the air or in nearby vegetation.” (Washington’s Blog)
The smoldering Fukushima hulk is a perpetual death machine poisoning everything around it–sea, sky and soil. Here’s a clip from the Collin’s article:
“…The soil contamination is really high. Soil found 40 kilometers away…. the levels on the soil were very high—in fact, a thousand times iodine, 4,000 times the cesium standard. And we just got a report from the Kyoto Research Reactor Institute, Dr. Tetsuji Imanaka, that said that—he had to look a little bit more into the sampling of the Japanese government, but depending on how the sampling was done, this level of contamination in the soil could be twice the amount that was compulsory evacuation for Chernobyl. Aileen Mioko Smith, March 24 (thanks to Michael Collins “They said it wasn’t like Chernobyl and they were wrong”)
Twice as high as Chernobyl already, and the disaster is likely to persist for months to come. Things are getting worse, much worse.
The Japanese government has been downplaying the crisis to make it look like they have matters under control, but it’s all a sham. They control nothing. The rescue mission has been a flop from the get-go and now things are at a boiling point. The emergency effort has been overtaken by events and now it’s a matter of “wait and see”. We’re approaching zero hour.
So why the cover up? Why is the media trying to soft-peddle the real effects of a nuclear cataclysm? Does the Japanese government really believe they can make things better by tweaking their public relations strategy? They should focus on saving lives and abandon “perception management” altogether. This is from the Union of Concerned Scientists website:
“Our assessment is that the Japanese government is squandering the opportunity to initiate an orderly evacuation from larger areas around the site–especially of sensitive populations, like children and pregnant women. It is potentially wasting valuable time by not undertaking a larger scale evacuation at this time.”
The Japanese government is trying to protect the powerful nuclear lobby. The same is true of Obama, who continues to promote nuclear energy even while radiation belches from battered Fukushima. He’s not thinking about the public; he’s thinking about the deep pocket constituents who fill his campaign coffers.
Japanese workers are putting their lives on the line to regain control of the broken facility, but with little success. The probability of another fire, another monstrous explosion, or a full-core meltdown increases by the day. The Fukushima fiasco is gaining pace putting tens of thousands of people at risk of thyroid cancer, childhood leukemia and other life-threatening ailments.
On Saturday, Japan’s prime minister, Naoto Kan, said the situation at the Fukushima nuclear plant was ”serious”. That might be the understatement of the century.
PROFESSOR CHRIS BUSBY
1. Daily Mail – Professor Chris Busby – “It’s a catastrophe. You can get nuclear explosions. If there is an explosion (_or_ _explosions_!) it will put hundreds of tons of radioactivity into the atmosphere.” Correct then. Still correct today – see 3. below.
The dopes at the UK Reich-wing Daily Mail put out video with _no_ indication of who the speaker is. In this case he later turned out to be extremely important and extremely credible!
The photos weren’t bad, either. – ‘Resilience: A man in a suit walks calmly through a scene of devastation in Sendai, Japan’ – March 15, 2011 – UK Daily Mail –
2. FUKUSHIMA EXPLOSION(S)
Professor Busby – “A nuclear explosion is a possibility. They’re calling it a zirconium hydrogen explosion. It’s by no means certain that this is the case, in fact, because we don’t get to see in the top of the reactor. It’s inconceivable to me that they haven’t flown a helicopter over the top of the reactor so we can look down inside and see if what they are saying is actually true. So I have very big suspicions about this. And, incidentally, a great deal of radiation is coming out. … What this means is that up to a hundred kilometers away we are getting concentrations of plutonium, caesium and iodine, just like Chernobyl. And it caused significant harm to the population I have to say.”
HA! Logical. Truthful. Accurate. Open. That’s Busby off HMG’s Christmas card list … @ 2.40
That one video should tell you exactly what to expect when you hear the UK government line. Namely bugger all! –
Professors Ian Fells and Chris Busby. One is a nuclear industry shill / spokes-droid who appears to think you need plutonium in your orange juice. The other is not. Clue – Vive la France! ; ) –
Found on Low Level Radiation Campaign –
3. ‘Deconstructing Nuclear Experts,’ by Professor Chris Busby – March 28, 2011 – Counterpunch –
Low Level Radiation Campaign – Chris Busby, Scientific Secretary, European Comittee on Radiation Risk –
ECRR RISK MODEL
In particular note their risk calculations for ingested Fukushima fallout, (alpha-particles mostly) based on gamma radiation readings. _Six_hundred_times_ greater. Which neatly explains the explosion of cancer rates after Chernobyl. And will again after Fukushima! Which is why you need to do the reading. No change there, then! – See ’20th March 2011′ – no direct link available –
Low Level Radiation Campaign –
So when you see the US. W. Coast background gamma radiation go up by thirty to fifty percent in rain, you can calculate the resulting cancers over fifty years. Depending on how long you think it will take the Japanese to put their entire Fukushima site in a concrete sarcophagus.
(460 days? Wild guess. A. Because the Russians were lead by lions. Not the bureaucratic donkey’s / nuclear industry satraps we get in the USUK and Japan. B. It’s six, or seven times the job at Chernobyl!)
Best comment so far department –
“There is no [BOOM!] danger of a nuclear [BOOM!] meltdown…. Honest [BOOM!].Ctd p. 94. –
UK Media Lens Messageboard is excellent. From Keith-264. –
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LESSONS FROM CHERNOBYL – ALEXEY YABLOKOV
Russian Academician / Soviet Academician. “Even more respected than the US (nearly entirely nuclear industry poodle) version.”
Stunning news conference.
The first and last word on Chernobyl comes from the authors of the book on it. The suppressed book. What you don’t know can _seriously_ damage the health of everyone living on earth! No, really !!! Got genetic mutations of billions of humans for at least seven generations? No? YOU WILL!
“If you hear “there is danger, but it’s not immediate,” run away very far, immediately!”
“On the US W. Coast the danger is from radioactive iodine. You can paint ordinary iodine on your skin.” ( and it will be absorbed by the thyroid. To block uptake of radioactive iodine. In Russia this was some of the only treatment available. ? ) But does it work and, if so, how well does it work?
“If you take it (potassium iodide?) 18 hours before exposure to radioactive iodine, it reduces the risk of thyroid cancer by thirty percent. If you wait until two days after exposure, then it reduces the risk by two percent.” In reply to a question, “Did the Japanese government wait too long before issuing potassium iodide.” A. Yes!. Q. US? A. So far ‘You don’t need it,’ said the governing arm of the US Nuclear industry Military-Industrial-Congressional complex. And you trusted them. HA!
“Russian cities were protected by seeding clouds with (silver?) iodide / cement / to precipitate rain and radiation.” The Russians are incredibly practical / effective. There is a lot to be said for living under a system that is agreed to be entirely corrupt. Is Japan and the US as practical and effective and as aware that they too live in entirely corrupt system ??? No chance!
Ralph Nader – 1959 stitch-up agreement between IAEA — the nuclear industry PR outfit whose #1 job is to promote nuclear power — and WHO. ‘The WHO will ask IAEA’s permission before commenting on any nuclear catastrophe / disaster / apocalypse / cock-up.’ Oh great! Paraphrased.
“There were a lot of deaths in the US from Chernobyl.” (170,000 of the 1m total?) “Contaminated food products started arriving in the US after the Chernobyl disaster. Herring from Norway. Cheese from Germany. Dried fruit from Turkey.” Some was destroyed. “It was all made secret.” Wonderful. So because we didn’t hear about it then, ‘they’ will try exactly the same wheeze again. No change there. US Mushrooms at the ready!
“We have the same problems in Russia as you have in the US, with corporations.” Amen!
A (The?) leading Soviet Academician (now Russian) has been taking part in a protest of the WHO in Geneva. Now in its 204th week, over its suppression of the truth from Chernobyl. Namely the million deaths and the hundreds of millions of genetic injuries that will occur for the next seven generations. Who knew? ER, apologies for bad pun.
“Forty percent of Europe is irradiated. I no longer eat European food.” – Dr Helen Caldicott. “It is not reported. A form of psychic numbing.” (? ER, OR a form of USUK MSM cover-up. No change there, then!)
‘Alexy Yablokov Press Conference Today – Watch on C-SPAN’ – March 25, 2011 – C-SPAN, via Beyond Nuclear –
Direct – C-SPAN –
Found at Beyond Nuclear –
If it’s like Chernobyl — complete with lack of information and the public left to work out the story, after being thoroughly irradiated, by panicky western governments — would it help to read a) Helen Caldicott and b) the Chernobyl report?
– Can anyone find a free-to-air (? ; ) ) pdf of this??? –
– ‘Chernobyl: Consequences of the Catastrophe for People and the Environment,’ by Alexey Yablokov, Vassily Nesterenko, and Alexey Nesterenko. – New York Academy of Sciences –
SO. We are now all Black Knights. Whether we want to be or not. Oh great! Thanks Neo-Con neoliberal economic New World Order! – “Come back you coward.” – Monty Python’s Black Knight _never_ gives up. –
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Independent — non-government — radiation safety information and advice –
Risk model from European Comittee on Radiation Risk – Radiation is _six_hundred_times_ more dangerous than the nuclear industry shill version. _And_ it accurately reflects actual cancer rates after Chernobyl. –
– Low Level Radiation Campaign – found via UK Media Lens recommendation –
Beyond Nuclear – Had link to Alexey Yablokov C-SPAN Chernoby 25th anniversary news conference. –
Radiation Network – monitoring the US – gamma radiation. Watch for thirty to fifty percent increase in radiation levels during rain. (Observed).
Nuclear Information and Resource Information –
Nuke Free .org –
If You Love This Planet – Dr. Helen Caldicott radio program – Australia –
Dr. Helen Caldicott
Physicians for Social Responsibility
Ghost Town – Are you afraid of Chernobyl’s (one million) ghosts? NO? You will be! “Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow. But soon and for the rest of your life!” Casablanca. –
Karl Grossman – Envirovideo –
Harvey Wasserman, Karl Grossman, Helen Caldicott – See Flashpoints –
Flashpoints – found via KPFA –
KPFA – Flashpoints Archive link –
Shaun Burnie – one man nuclear industry demolition army – “The Japanese have been mounting quite an effective perception management campaign. Not crisis management. Not work on the problem. Perception management.” Paraphrased – Found via RT –
Search for Dr. Helen Caldicott – Her logic is utterly convincing. – TUC Radio – Newest Program –
From Maria Gilardin, who has found and interviewed every sane progressive and liberal since forever, including Peter Dale Scott, Dr. Helen Caldicott, Hermann Scheer, David Ray Griffin, Ray McGovern, Michael Parenti, Robert Fisk, on and on – TUC Radio –
Several links above found via UK Media Lens Messageboard –