Wednesday, March 30, 2011

EPI: "Top" 5% of Households Holds More Than Half Country's Wealth"

Andrea Orr March 24, 2011 "The distribution of wealth in the United States is even more unequal than the distribution of wages and income.

"The Figure, from EPI’s new paper, The State of Working America’s Wealth. shows how wealth is divided among American households. It merges survey data on household wealth with changes in aggregate asset prices to estimate how wealth has been affected by the bursting of the housing bubble and the Great Recession. "

It shows that in 2009, the top 5% of wealth holders claimed 63.5% of the country’s wealth.

The bottom 80%, by contrast, held just 12.8% of the country’s wealth."
Find the report at the link above...

AP: Radiation Found in U.S. Milk Samples

This report was published by the AP. Zerohedge referred it: Low levels of radiation found in US milk By MARY CLARE JALONICK, Associated Press Associated Press March 30, 2011 03:31 PM . "Very low levels of radiation turned up in a sample of milk from Washington state, the Environmental Protection Agency and the Food and Drug Administration said Wednesday, but federal officials assured consumers not to worry. "The FDA said such findings were to be expected in the coming days because of the nuclear crisis in Japan, and that the levels were expected to drop relatively quickly. "Japan's Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power complex began leaking radiation after it was damaged by a devastating earthquake and tsunami earlier this month. "Results from a March 25 milk sample taken from Spokane, Wash., showed levels of radioactive Iodine-131 that were still 5,000 times below levels of concern set by the FDA, including levels set for infants and children...."

Monday, March 28, 2011

Fukushima Radiation Questions and Opinions Links

For those concerned about radiation in the U.S., here is an article to read and consider For radiation beginners, here is a helpful video on forms, effects, and half-life without commentary on the situation (the video from 3/25) If you are afraid Fukushima is going to blow, here is an article for you by M. Whitney Tired of listening to the experts, Counter Punch remedies with "Deconstructing Nuclear Experts" h


Straight from Japan on the Jet Stream Express, beta radiation from Japan. According to the EPA's radnet, Colorado's cities had readings in the 270s while Phoenix, with a normal reading of 19, achieved 135 in Beta Radiation! But of course this is ALL good despite the fact that the forms of radiation we are being exposed to are not natural and do not occur in the absence of fission and are not safe in any level The National Council on Radiation Protection says, “… every increment of radiation exposure produces an incremen­tal increase in the risk of cancer.” The Environmental Protection Agency says, “… any exposure to radiation poses some risk, i.e. there is no level below which we can say an exposure poses no risk.” The Department of Energy says about “low levels of radiation” that “… the major effect is a very slight increase in cancer risk.” The Nuclear Regulatory Commission says, “any amount of radiation may pose some risk for causing cancer ... any increase in dose, no matter how small, results in an incremental increase in risk.” The National Academy of Sciences, in its “Biological Effects of Ionizing Radiation VII,” says, “... it is unlikely that a threshold exists for the induction of cancers ....” John LaForge concludes: "Long story short, 'One can no longer speak of a ‘safe’ dose level,' as Dr. Ian Fairlie and Dr. Marvin Resnikoff said in their report 'No dose too low,' in the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists." by John LaForge Wednesday, March 23, 2011 by Spewing from Meltdowns: Dangerous Plumes of Disinformation

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Differentiating Dangerous from Normal Background Radiation

Washington's Blog has a must read article on why the radiation being released from the Fukushima plant is different from "normal" background radiation. The article begins: "Apologists for the type of old, unsafe nuclear reactors which are leaking in Japan argue that the amount of radiation released from Fukushima is small compared to the amount of "background radiation" " There Are NO Background Levels of Radioactive Caesium or Iodine ..." Greenpeace Germany has issued a statement calling the Fukushima nuclear disaster as bad or worse than Chernobyl How bad is this going to get? How long is dangerous radiation going to spew?????

Saturday, March 26, 2011

ZeroHedge Reports on Fukushima Cover-Up

TEPCO Admits To Another Cover Up As Radioactivity In Seawater Near Fukushima Soars To 1,251 Above Legal Limit
Submitted by Tyler Durden on 03/26/2011 10:26 -0400
"The latest news out of Fukushima confirms fears that irradiated water containment at the radioactive plant has been complete breached, after Radioactive iodine-131 at a concentration 1,250.8 times the legal limit was detected Friday morning in a seawater sample taken around 330 meters south of the plant, near the drainage outlets of the four troubled reactors, the government's Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency said Saturday.

As Kyodo updates: "The level rose to its highest so far in the survey begun this week, after remaining around levels about 100 times the legal limit. It is highly likely that radioactive water in the plant has found its way into the sea, TEPCO said."

It's all good though: the government has a prepared strawman for this unprecedented surge in radioactivity as well."Radioactive materials ''will be significantly diluted'' by the time they are consumed by marine species, the agency said, adding it would not have a significant impact on fishery products as fishing is not being conducted in the area within 20 kilometers of the plant because the government has issued a directive for residents in the zone to evacuate."

But none of this matter as we get the latest confirmation that no news coming out of the stricken plant can be trusted: "TEPCO's Fukushima office acknowledged Saturday that it had known earlier that the radiation in the underground level of the turbine building of one of the reactors was extremely high, but had not made the information available to pertinent parties..."

David DeGraw on Empire State Rebellion

In an interview with Max Keiser, David DeGraw explains the impetus for rebellion. Direct quotes from the transcript follow:
“We’re not leaving until we have commitments to break up the banks and end the campaign finance racket.”

Let’s just go over some statistics here:

· 59 Million people without health care
· 52 Million in poverty
· 44 Million on food stamps
· 30 Million in need of work
· 7 Million foreclosed on
· 5 Million homes over 60 days late on mortgage payments
· $1 Trillion in student debt

We have the highest, most severe inequality of wealth we have ever had, unlimited campaign spending, budget cuts for the poor, tax breaks for the rich – this is the ultimate recipe for revolution.

America has 239 million people living paycheck to paycheck right now. Food prices are going up, oil is going up, everything is going up – these people aren’t going to be able to make ends meet.

It’s the same everywhere, it’s global policies, whether its Ireland, United States, Egypt, Greece. People are going to fight back because the economic central planners have become so arrogant.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Maps of Radioactive Fallout

Zerohedge (linked above) provides a variety of different maps of radioactive fallout.

I believe the public needs to follow this issue. There is no safe level of exposure to the radioactive elements being released. It seems clear that the ongoing disaster is uncontained and will continue potentially for weeks.

Kyodo news is reporting that workers at the plant have stepped into water 10,000 more radioactive than normal.

In the same article, Kyodo is also reporting that radioactivity levels in the sea near the plant are soaring

Levels of radioactive materials soaring in sea near nuke plant
TOKYO, March 26, Kyodo

Levels of radioactive materials are skyrocketing in the sea near the crisis-hit nuclear power station in Fukushima Prefecture, the government's nuclear safety agency said Saturday, while the plant's operator has started injecting fresh water into the No. 2 reactor core to enhance cooling efficiency.

According to the government's Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency, radioactive iodine-131 at a concentration 1,250.8 times the legal limit was detected Friday morning in a seawater sample taken around 330 meters south of the plant, near the drain outlets of its troubled four reactors.

The level rose to its highest so far in the survey begun this week, after staying around levels 100 times over the legal limit. It is highly likely that radioactive water in the plant has disembogued into the sea, Tokyo Electric Power Co said....


I've been rather crazy busy the last 2 days but I did get a chance to speak to my regional EPA office about the change in the Federal EPA's webpage. Data I once relied on are now gone. The regional office wasn't informed about the change and couldn't find it either. What is going on here....??????????

I think a massive cover-up of the scale of and severity of the disaster is not just happening in Japan, but is also happening abroad.

Think of the food disaster that will occur if California's agriculture is contaminated by fallout! It is a terrifying thought.

Our government was happy to say contaminated shrimp from the Gulf of Mexico were safe to eat after the BP disaster. What makes this situation any different????

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Is There a Safe Level of Radiation?

The Physicians for Social Responsibility Say NO!

They write: "According to the National Academy of Sciences, there are no safe doses of radiation. Decades of research show clearly that any dose of radiation increases an individual’s risk for the development of cancer.

“There is no safe level of radionuclide exposure, whether from food, water or other sources. Period,” said Jeff Patterson, DO, immediate past president of Physicians for Social Responsibility. “Exposure to radionuclides, such as iodine-131 and cesium-137, increases the incidence of cancer. For this reason, every effort must be taken to minimize the radionuclide content in food and water.”

“Consuming food containing radionuclides is particularly dangerous. If an individual ingests or inhales a radioactive particle, it continues to irradiate the body as long as it remains radioactive and stays in the body,”said Alan H. Lockwood, MD, a member of the Board of Physicians for Social Responsibility. “The Japanese government should ban the sale of foods that contain radioactivity levels above pre-disaster levelsand continue to monitor food and water broadly in the area. In addition, the FDA and EPA must enforce existing regulations and guidelines that address radionuclide content in our food supply here at home.”

As the crisis in Japan goes on, there are an increasing number of sources reporting that 100 milliSieverts (mSv) is the lowest dose at which a person isat risk for cancer. Established research disproves this claim. A dose of 100 mSv creates a one in 100 risk of getting cancer, buta dose of 10 mSv still gives a one in 1,000 chance of getting cancer, and a dose of 1 mSv gives a one in 10,000 risk.

Even if the risk of getting cancer for one individual from a given level of food contamination is low, if thousands or millions of people are exposed, then some of those people will get cancer.

Neutron Beam?????????????

Thursday, March 24, 2011
Neutron beam observed 13 times
Kyodo News
Tokyo Electric Power Co. said Wednesday it has observed a neutron beam, a kind of radioactive ray, 13 times on the premises of its crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant.

Tepco said the neutron beam measured about 1.5 km southwest of the plant's Nos. 1 and 2 reactors over three days from March 13 and is equivalent to 0.01 to 0.02 microsieverts per hour. This is not a dangerous level of radiation, it added.

I suggest readers completely disregard the "not dangerous level fo radiation" comment.

I'm following the discussion of this "beam" at zerohedge. Commentators there suggest the account makes little "sense" from a technical perspective but does suggest that some level of criticality--or nuclear fission--has been achieved and is not contained at the plant.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Turning the Lights On

We are supposed to believe that the ongoing disaster in Japan is nearly over since power cables were restored and lights were turned on in a control room.

However, read a little more and strange inconsistencies emerge in this story. For instance:

"On Tuesday, an International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) senior official, James Lyons, said he could not confirm that the damaged reactors were "totally intact" or if they were cracked and leaking radiation.

"We continue to see radiation coming from the site... and the question is where exactly is that coming from," Mr Lyons told a news conference

Since satellites and flyovers are closely monitoring the state of the reactors someone is either lying or the radiation is so bad that no one can get close enough to answer this question about the source of the radiation. This doesn't seem like good news to me.

Then there is a rather disturbing headline story at Counterpunch
You Get 3,500,000 the Normal Dose. You Call That Safe? And What Media Have Reported This? None!" What They're Covering Up at Fukushima
Introduced by Douglas Lummis

The interview includes the following passage from Takashi about the good news concerning the lights:

Hirose: Yes, there’s a little bit of hope there. But what’s worrisome is that a nuclear reactor is not like what the schematic pictures show (shows a graphic picture of a reactor, like those used on TV). This is just a cartoon. Here’s what it looks like underneath a reactor container (shows a photograph). This is the butt end of the reactor. Take a look. It’s a forest of switch levers and wires and pipes. On television these pseudo-scholars come on and give us simple explanations, but they know nothing, those college professors. Only the engineers know. This is where water has been poured in. This maze of pipes is enough to make you dizzy. Its structure is too wildly complex for us to understand. For a week now they have been pouring water through there. And it’s salt water, right? You pour salt water on a hot kiln and what do you think happens? You get salt. The salt will get into all these valves and cause them to freeze. They won’t move. This will be happening everywhere. So I can’t believe that it’s just a simple matter of you reconnecting the electricity and the water will begin to circulate. I think any engineer with a little imagination can understand this. You take a system as unbelievably complex as this and then actually dump water on it from a helicopter – maybe they have some idea of how this could work, but I can’t understand it.

I imagine the people in Japan are getting tired of the endless spin and equivocation coming from the plant officials and politicians.

This story line is reading very similarily to the narrative exposed in the Battle for Chernobyl, a must see video available at youtube.

I know that I am getting tired of it all and wish someone would really illuminate the situation with some transparency...

Radiation Alerts for Japan and ??? Elsewhere???
VIENNA, March 22 (Reuters) - Radiation is continuing to be emitted from Japan's disaster-hit nuclear site but it is unclear exactly what the source of it is, a senior UN atomic agency official said on Tuesday. "We continue to see radiation coming from ...

Radiation found in sea water, milk, vegetables; IAEA: Overall situation at Fukushima plant remains serious; 21,000 dead or missing.
It's a hard rain that's going to fall
By Ritt Goldstein

For reasons one can only speculate upon, official pronouncements regarding the ongoing Fukushima reactor disaster in Japan have consistently either understated its severity, its potential consequences, or both. While this may benefit the nuclear industry and its backers, such a distortion of fact has left many either dubious of official claims or complacent because of them. Some difficult truths must be told.
Alert: Fukushima Coverup, 40 Years of Spent Nuclear Rods Blown Sky High
by Paul Joseph Watson and Kurt Nimmo

It should be obvious by now that the authorities in Japan are lying about the effort to contain the situation in order to mollify the public. It is highly likely there are no workers on the site attempting to contain the disaster.
Earlier today, a report was issued indicating that over 70% of these spent fuel rods are now damaged - in other words, they are emitting radiation or will soon. The disclosure reveals that authorities in Japan - who have consistently played down the danger and issued conflicting information - are guilty of criminal behavior and endangering the lives of countless people.

Monday, March 21, 2011

UPDATE: Reactors and Spent Fuel Ponds Still IN TROUBLE

Latest Updates

Although power cables have been "restored," only the pump in reactor #5 is running on power from grid. I believe #6 is being cooled from a generator. #2 is cracked. Reactor #3 appears to be at risk. Spent fuel pool in #4 is cracked and may only be cooled via water bombardment.

Here is what Reuters reports:

Firefighters postponed spraying Japan's badly damaged nuclear reactor No. 3 with seawater on Monday after a plume of grey smoke was seen over the structure, the government says.

- Engineers have re-established power cables to all six reactors. Electricity restored at No. 2 reactor and a pump in reactor No. 5 is now running on power from grid.

- If engineers are unable to cool the reactor, the last option would be entombing the plant with concrete and sand to prevent a catastrophic radiation leak, the method used at Chernobyl in Ukraine in 1986.

Kyodo news offers more details

The smoke stopped after 6 p.m. [at reactor #3], but TEPCO subsequently found that white smoke was rising through a crack in the roof of the building that houses the No. 2 reactor at around 6:20 p.m. The utility said later the smoke was believed to be steam, not from the reactor's core or spent fuel pool....

Hidehiko Nishiyama, a spokesman for the nuclear safety agency, said the causes of the smoke billowing from the No. 2 and No. 3 reactor buildings remain unknown and that the originally scheduled work to revive power and cooling systems at the troubled reactors will be delayed by one day.

As the No. 3 reactor remains without power, smoke was not apparently triggered by an electricity leak or short-circuiting, Nishiyama said....

It may take more time before the vital cooling system is restored at the No. 2 reactor, the containment vessel of which suffered damage to its pressure-suppression chamber, as some replacement parts are needed for the electrical system, the agency added.

EPA Radiation Data for Tucson Arizona Mar 21 2011

I don't know what these numbers mean!!! Trying to figure it out... Please comment if you know...

Gamma Energy Range 10 Gross(CPM) 47

Gamma Energy Range 2 Gross(CPM) 2920

Gamma Energy Range 3 Gross(CPM 1575

Gamma Energy Range 4 Gross(CPM 436

Gamma Energy Range 5 Gross(CPM 218

Gamma Energy Range 6 Gross(CPM) 145

Gamma Energy Range 7 Gross(CPM 164

Gamma Energy Range 8 Gross(CPM 102


Sunday, March 20, 2011

Is Nuclear Plant Crisis in Japan "Stable," Really?


Here is what skynews is reporting. All of these data points have been made separately but now the mainstream media is only too happy to spin the return of electricity to reactors #5 and #6 as "solving" the problems. NO @#$% Way is that true!

here is the report:

"After stringing a new power line to the plant from the electric grid, company officials reported on Saturday that they had reconnected coolant pumps in reactor Nos. 5 and 6 and restored the flow of water to the spent fuel cooling pools in those buildings. In the day since, temperatures in those pools have returned to near normal.

"But those two pools had not been considered a significant threat. Authorities are much more concerned about reactors No. 2 and No. 3 and the spent fuel pool at No. 4.

The reactor containment vessel at No. 2 may be cracked and venting some radioactive gases into the environment.

Reactor No. 3 is the only reactor at the site that contains plutonium in the fuel rods and its escape would be extremely dangerous because it is carcinogenic in even minute doses.

And the spent fuel pool at reactor building No. 4 is thought to have boiled dry, allowing the fuel rods to heat up and become damaged, also releasing radioactivity into the environment.

The nuclear cores inside the reactors are usually covered in water, but the top halves of the cores in reactors 1, 2 and 3 were exposed to air for at least several days, according to reports from the International Atomic Energy Agency and other sources.

Even if those cores are resubmerged, they may have experienced permanent damage that would make them more difficult to keep cool, Lyman said.

For instance, he said, if the exposed portions of the fuel rods have swelled due to heat, the gaps between them may now be too small to pass enough water to cool them.

In addition, when the ziconium cladding surrounding the cores was exposed to air, it may have oxidised and become so brittle that radioactive fuel particles could have escaped through cracks....

'These cores may not be as easily cooled as if they were undamaged,' Lyman said.

Fukushima Power Plant Data Summary

Kyodo News: Radioactive Food 27X Safe Levels


Spinach with radiation 27 times higher than limit found in Japan
TOKYO, March 21, Kyodo

Spinach with radioactive iodine 27 times more than the government-regulated limit was found in the city of Hitachi in Ibaraki Prefecture, more than 100 kilometers south of the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, but the radiation levels do not affect human health, local authorities said Sunday.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

New Oil Spill in the Gulf of Mexico Near Old Oil Spill: What a $%^& Surprise


Fukushima Update: Reactor 3 Pressure Growing!!

Kyodo says pressure on #3, the reactor with plutonium, is growing. "Steps" are being taken to reduce that pressure. Meanwhile, authorities "shot" authorities into the spent-fuel pool of reactor #4:

Kyodo reports:

1st water sprayed at Fukushima's No. 4 reactor
TOKYO, March 20, Kyodo

Japanese authorities shot water into a spent-fuel pool of the reactor No. 4 of the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant Sunday for the first time since the reactor's cooling system failed following last week's powerful earthquake.

The operator also stepped up efforts to reactivate the cooling system of the reactors No. 1 and 2 as power cables were connected to them, but the International Atomic Energy Agency chief indicated it was premature to have an optimistic view on the future of the troubled plant.

The Ground Self-Defense Force sprayed about 80 tons of water from a vehicle into the pool for nearly one hour until 9:30 a.m., according to the Defense Ministry.

The Propaganda Has Begun

Watching the news on tv yesterday (only because my father-in-law was watching it--I hate tv), I was struck by the marginalization of the ON-GOING nuclear disaster in Japan. Nothing has changed and yet tv news stations are now reporting the situation with the nuclear plant is "stable."

Those authorities who expressed alarm over the sheer amount of radiation that could be released locally or even globally are disappearing from tv.

Today the tv gloats that power was re-established at units 5 and 6. However, units 5 and 6 were not, and are not, the units that are in immediate jeopardy!

What about units 1, 2, 3, & 4? What about the spent fuel pool in unit #4--the pool known to be cracked? What about the breached containment vessel of unit #2?

What about the broken cooling pumps in units 1, 2, and 3 damaged by the hydrogen explosions?

The details reported here come from the LA Times, so I must commend their reporting, particularly as contrasted with the television news.,0,6212176.story

And I must acknowledge that the NYT did report on contaminated food in Japan:
"The Japanese Health Ministry said Saturday that it had detected elevated levels of radiation in spinach and milk at farms up to 90 miles from Japan’s crippled nuclear reactors. The ministry did not make reference to any contaminated farm animals, seafood or fishing grounds in Japan. And no food exports from Japan have failed quality tests being done by other countries."

The print media is far superior to television media, that much is clear.

One wonders, however, what is not being reported, particularly as the war against Libya crowds out headlines about Japan?

Japan has a law, Article 15, that allows Japan to suppress news to prevent riots. What isn't Japan reporting?

This disaster is far from over and the forms and effects of various kinds of radioactive contamination have not been adequately examined.

I signed up to receive EPA data from their radnet network. Unfortunately, the system freezes every time one attempts to download data. Others who have also signed up have this problem.

I believe that radioactive particles will be dispersed as they are transported across the Pacific Ocean. However, the jet stream is an efficient conveyor belt. Indeed, much of the particle pollution in Los Angeles is from China

How many days will it be before the radioactive volcano is suppressed?

How can those in Japan trust what they are told? How can we on the US west coast know our kids are safe from dangerous forms of radioactive particles?

Confidence in government cannot be sustained by lies of omission and dis-information....

For instance, "The French nuclear agency IRSN said Friday that the Fukushima Daiichi plant had already released 10% as much radioactivity as Chernobyl...",0,4568019,full.story

Friday, March 18, 2011

Links for Japan Meltdown Cover-Up????

In this Democracy Now interview, Paul Gunter claims that the fuel for reactors #4, #5, and #6 were taken out of the reactors and stored in the spent fuel pools. If true, that compounds the problems because #4's pool is supposedly emptied of water. Here is what he said:

PAUL GUNTER: Well, obviously, right now, there is a lot of contradictory information. I think that what’s most important to understand is that among these six units at Fukushima Daiichi, Units 4, 5 and 6, the fuel in the reactor core was taken out of the reactor vessel, taken out of containment, and placed in these rooftop spent fuel pools. So all of the radioactive inventory was moved. We’re very concerned about this very large volume of radioactive material that is now in a conflict of information in its state of, you know, no water or water. But clearly, right now, there is a serious danger of a full core meltdown outside of containment at Unit 4. This could occur at Unit 5 and 6, and we still have the crippled reactors at 1, 2 and 3.

It is worth reading the entire transcript or listening to the interview.

Also of note is the lengthy and well documented essay, "Nuclear Apocalypse in Japan
Lifting the Veil of Nuclear Catastrophe and cover-up" by Keith Harmon Snow

Daily Mail: TEPCO Officials Acknowledge Scope/Severity of Crisis

Hat tip: Zero Hedge

The moment nuclear plant chief WEPT as Japanese finally admit that radiation leak is serious enough to kill people By Daily Mail Reporter
Last updated at 5:47 PM on 18th March 2011

"The boss of the company behind the devastated Japanese nuclear reactor today broke down in tears - as his country finally acknowledged the radiation spewing from the over-heating reactors and fuel rods was enough to kill some citizens"

"Officials admit they may have to bury reactors under concrete - as happened at Chernobyl"

"Government says it was overwhelmed by the scale of twin disasters"

"Japanese upgrade accident from level four to five - the same as Three Mile Island"

Radiation levels not expected to impact people beyond immediate vicinity.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Units 3 and 4 at Fukushima and Radioactivity

The Guardian newspaper helps explain the crisis and confusion surrounding these 2 units.

More focus is being put on unit 3, even though there are reports that the pool containing the spent fuel rods at unit 4 is empty. An empty pool at unit 4 is very bad; however, apparently the plutonium in the rods at storage pond in #3 is more of a health risk:
"The emergency workers focused their efforts on the storage pool at reactor 3, the only unit at the site that runs on mixed oxide fuel, which contains reclaimed plutonium. The strategy appeared to conflict with comments made by US nuclear officials and Sir John Beddington, the UK government's chief science adviser, who are most concerned about the storage pool at reactor 4, which they say is now completely empty...."

Kyodo news confirms that there exists no containment of the pools in both unit 3 and 4.
Kyodo also reports:
"The spent fuel pools at the power station lost their cooling function after the quake and tsunami struck last Friday. It is also no longer possible to monitor the water level and temperature of the pools of the Nos. 1 to 4 units..."

NPR reported this afternoon that this disaster is likely to go on for weeks!!!!

How much dispersed radiation will the truly unfortunate citizens of Japan be exposed to? My heart aches for them. What about the rest of the world?

Radiation Information Links

US, UK Search Teams Pulling Out of Japan

Zerohedge reports

Nations Urge Citizens to Evaculate Japan

Water cannons may have damaged reactors

Radiation near or at lethal levels at plant

Situation remains critical

All water drained in #4's spent fuel pond

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Plutonium in Reactor 3 from NPR

I highly recommend Washington's Blog

More specifically, is the plutonium in reactor 3 a concern? NPR says it is less likely to travel far, which is good for everyone except the Japanese (block quotes)

March 16, 2011 Some outside experts are particularly concerned about high levels of plutonium in one of the damaged Japanese reactors. About 6 percent of the fuel rods in reactor No. 3 at the Fukushima Dai-ichi power plant are made from so-called "mixed-oxide" (MOX) fuel, which contains plutonium as well as uranium.

According to the Union of Concerned Scientists, MOX fuel presents particular risks in an accident.

For one thing, it melts at a slightly lower temperature.
In addition, plutonium is a particularly long-lived and toxic material. The half-life of plutonium-239 is 24,000 years, so if it escaped in smoke from a burning reactor and contaminated soil downwind, it would remain hazardous for tens of thousands of years....

But officials at the International Atomic Energy Agency say the presence of MOX fuel does not add significantly to the dangers.

And although plutonium is a long-lived emitter of radiation, it is also quite heavy, so it is not likely to move very far downwind from its source.

Projected Path of Radiation in the U.S.

The New York Times reports that the UN projects any radiation plume coming from Japan to arrive over the US on Friday, in Southern California and move to Arizona, Utah, and Nevada (direct quotes):

The forecast assumes that radioactivity in Japan is released continuously and forms a rising plume. It ends with the plume heading into Southern California and the American Southwest, including Nevada, Utah and Arizona. The plume would have continued eastward if the United Nations scientists had run the projection forward.

...Earlier this week, the leading edge of the tangible plume was detected by the Navy’s Seventh Fleet when it was operating about 100 miles northeast of the Japanese reactor complex. On Monday, the Navy said it had repositioned its ships and aircraft off Japan “as a precautionary measure....

The forecast, calculated Tuesday, is based on patterns of Pacific winds at that time and the predicted path is likely to change as weather patterns shift.

On Sunday, the United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission said it expected that no “harmful levels of radioactivity” would travel from Japan to the United States “given the thousands of miles between the two countries.”

Why the Fuel Rods Will Keep Catching Fire, Releasing Dangerous Radiation into the Atmosphere

This is an excellent post about why the fuel rods stored at the nuclear reactors in Japan will keep catching fire until they are thoroughly and continuously doused with water. The release dangerous radiation when they burn.

Why hasn't this been done yet?

Radiation levels are too dangerous for workers. Anyone near those reactors will die. Radiation is being released by the cracked reactor vessels (now confirmed) and, worse, by the igniting fuel rods.

Workers remained, giving their lives, but they were pulled out and now it is not clear whether or not any are in the plants now.

The plan was to douse the spent fuel rods that keep igniting from above. However, the roof is only partially blown and it made it difficult to get adequate water in the spent fuel rod pond, particularly at reactor 4, which has most of the rods.

Now the plan is for Japan's police to use water cannons to douse the pools. These police will probably die from their radiation explosure.

Here is what Kyodo news is currently reporting (direct quotes)
Among the six reactors at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant operated by Tokyo Electric Power Co., part of the No. 2 reactor's containment vessel, key to enclosing harmful radioactive substances, suffered damage in the pressure-suppression chamber connected to the vessel following Tuesday's apparent hydrogen explosion.

An estimated 70 percent of the nuclear fuel rods have been damaged at the plant's No. 1 reactor and 33 percent at the No. 2 reactor, Tokyo Electric said Wednesday.

The cores of the No. 1, No. 2 and No. 3 reactors are believed to have partially melted with their cooling functions lost in the wake of Friday's magnitude 9.0 earthquake and tsunami.

The government's Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency said Wednesday that the water level had dropped in the No. 5 reactor, which was not in service when the killer quake jolted northeastern Japan, posing the risk of overheating. The agency said it will closely monitor data on the reactor to prevent the problems that occurred at other reactors.

CNN: Very High Radiation Releasted from Unit 4 of Fukushima Plant

direct quotes from CNN

Tokyo (CNN) -- Spent fuel rods in Unit 4 of Japan's stricken Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant have been exposed, resulting in the emission of "extremely high" levels of radiation, the head of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission said Wednesday.

What we believe at this time is that there has been a hydrogen explosion in this unit due to an uncovering of the fuel in the fuel pool," Gregory Jaczko told a House energy and commerce subcommittee hearing. "We believe that secondary containment has been destroyed and there is no water in the spent fuel pool, and we believe that radiation levels are extremely high, which could possibly impact the ability to take corrective measures."

Uncovered Fuel Rods Pose Greatest Danger Now


Japan police to douse spent fuel rods with water at Fukushima plant
TOKYO, March 17, Kyodo

Tokyo police plan to use a water cannon truck to attempt to cool a spent fuel rod pool Thursday in a bid to contain the disaster at the troubled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power station in Japan.

The building housing the No. 4 reactor suffered what appeared to be a hydrogen explosion early Tuesday following the devastating earthquake and tsunami last week. A fire also broke out Wednesday there.

In the face of the unprecedented nuclear crisis, the focus is now on how to cool the possibly overheating pools that store spent nuclear fuel rods at the No. 4 as well as No. 3 reactors.

Unless the spent fuel rods are cooled down, they could suffer damage and emit radioactive materials.

The government earlier studied a plan to deploy Ground Self-Defense Force choppers to spray water over the spent fuel pools, but the Defense Ministry said Wednesday afternoon it had given up on the idea due to the high radiation level.

The U.S. military, meanwhile, will operate a Global Hawk unmanned high-altitude reconnaissance aircraft, possibly on Thursday, to take images of the inside of the building that houses the No. 4 reactor, according to Japanese government sources.

Among the six reactors at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant operated by Tokyo Electric Power Co., part of the No. 2 reactor's containment vessel, key to enclosing harmful radioactive substances, suffered damage in the pressure-suppression chamber connected to the vessel following Tuesday's apparent hydrogen explosion.

An estimated 70 percent of the nuclear fuel rods have been damaged at the plant's No. 1 reactor and 33 percent at the No. 2 reactor, Tokyo Electric said Wednesday.

The cores of the No. 1, No. 2 and No. 3 reactors are believed to have partially melted with their cooling functions lost in the wake of Friday's magnitude 9.0 earthquake and tsunami.

The government's Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency said Wednesday that the water level had dropped in the No. 5 reactor, which was not in service when the killer quake jolted northeastern Japan, posing the risk of overheating. The agency said it will closely monitor data on the reactor to prevent the problems that occurred at other reactors.

The government has set the evacuation zone covering areas within a 20 kilometer radius of the plant.

Daily Mail: Japanese Have Essentially Lost Control


Get out of Tokyo: Foreign Office tells all Britons to leave toxic radiation zone as Japanese 'lose control' of stricken reactor
By David Derbyshire
Last updated at 7:06 PM on 16th March 2011

French minister: 'Let's not beat about the bush, they've essentially lost control'

Radioactive steam spews into atmosphere from reactor number three

Experts warn that crisis is 'approaching point of no return' as officials run out of options

Officials commandeer police water cannon to spray complex

Attempts to dump water on reactors by helicopter fail

Two more previously stable reactors begin to heat up

Rich scramble to book private jets out the country as fleeing passengers pack Tokyo airport

Workers battling nuclear meltdown evacuated for hours today after radiation levels increased

Read more:

No Water in Spent Fuel Rods Pool!

US nuclear agency chief says no more water in spent fuel pool at troubled Japan plant

I don't know which reactor.

This movie has got to end soon as it is making me sick!

New Links on Escalating Disaster

Nuclear Crisis: Rising Radiation Levels Halt Work at Fukushima Plant
Experts Say Nuclear Emergency Nearing 'Point of no Return'
March 16, 2011


The Heroes Who Are Staying Behind, Risking the Lives


International Citizens Radiation Monitoring Network

How Bad is the Situation at Japan's Nuclear Reactor? How Much Radiation Will Be Released?

I of course don't have the answers but I do have a collection of interesting links that may be useful. Keep in mind that the mainstream media will tailor the story to reduce panice. Also keep in mind that no one really knows what the worst case scenario would actually entail.

Dr Jeff Master's Wunderblog has a technical discussion of the radiation risks

Washington's Blog has an excellent discussion of the current state of the disaster with an embedded clip of the Rachel Maddow show at Global Research

Rachel's guest on the show, a physicist from Princeton, says that the disaster could release 8 times a normal reactor's radiation capacities even without a metldown because the spent fuel rods, which are exposed in some of the reactors (#4), release more radiation when heated than the reactor cores (because there are more spent rods and because they are not encased). The spent fuel rods would have to be heated to release the radiation.

Propublica has a very comprehensive reading list about the nature of the disaster and its risks

The Economic Collapse Blog has a list of indicators of the severity of the crisis


Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Excellent Link on Radiation Exposure Levels and Nuclear Plant Safety Records and Disasters

Fire at Reactor 2: Rumors of Cracks in Containment

there are rumors that I am having trouble confirming at this point that there are cracks in the containment structures of reactors 1 and 4 at the fukushima reactors.

For a broader discussion go to Democracy Now and listen to nuclear engineer A. Gunderson as having the possibility to become chernobyl on steroids

Link to Spiegel's Representation of Japan's Emissions

It is not clear to me what is being represented here. Is it radiation or is it heat? It is very scary though...

Full Scale Nuclear Catastrophe May Be Imminent in Japan


Direct quotes from the article at Kyodo news dated march 15

"The utility said it cannot deny the possibility that the early morning explosion was caused by hydrogen that was generated by a chemical reaction involving the exposed spent nuclear fuel and vapor...

"TEPCO said the problem could develop into a critical ''meltdown'' situation, in which fuel rods melt and are destroyed, emitting massive radioactive materials in the air...."


Status of Radiation Leaks

For an overview, see Washington's Blog

Here is an excerpt from an article by Stratfor
Red Alert: Radiation Rising and Heading South in Japan
March 15, 2011

The nuclear reactor situation in Japan has deteriorated significantly. Two more explosions occurred at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant on March 15.

The first occurred at 6:10 a.m. local time at reactor No. 2, which had seen nuclear fuel rods exposed for several hours after dropping water levels due to mishaps in the emergency cooling efforts. Within three hours the amount of radiation at the plant rose to 163 times the previously recorded level, according to Japan’s Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency...

Stratfor also reports a fire at reactor #4, which may or may not have burnt used fuel rods, is now reportedly out. Radiation was raised significantly by these events, up to 400 times


1. The situation is out of control

2. Radiation has been leaked/ing but it is not clear whether the containment vessels are cracked, though there is growing concern that at least one of them is indeed cracked.

3. Radiation levels are growing in Japan.

4. No evidence that radiation is in jet stream

Fire in Spent Fuel Rods Would Be Disastrous

(updated link)

Meltdowns Grow More Likely at the Fukushima Reactors
March 13, 2011 · By Robert Alvarez


A hydrogen explosion yesterday at Unit 1 severely damaged the reactor building, blowing apart its roof.

Japan's government and nuclear industry, with assistance from the U.S. military, is in a desperate race to stave off multiple nuclear reactor meltdowns — as well as potential fires in pools of spent fuel.

As of Sunday afternoon, more than 170,000 people have been evacuated near the reactor sites as radioactive releases have increased. The number of military emergency responders has jumped from 51,000 to 100,000. Officials now report a partial meltdown at Fukushima's Unit 1. Japanese media outlets are reporting that there may be a second one underway at Unit 3. People living nearby have been exposed to unknown levels of radiation, with some requiring medical attention.

Meanwhile, Unit 2 of the Tokai nuclear complex, which is near Kyodo and just 75 miles north of Tokyo, is reported to have a coolant pump failure. And Japan's nuclear safety agency has declared a state of emergency at the Onagawa nuclear power plant in northeastern Japan because of high radiation levels. Authorities are saying its three reactors are "under control."


There remain a number of major uncertainties about the situation's stability and many questions about what might happen next. Along with the struggle to cool the reactors is the potential danger from an inability to cool Fukushima's spent nuclear fuel pools. They contain very large concentrations of radioactivity, can catch fire, and are in much more vulnerable buildings. The ponds, typically rectangular basins about 40 feet deep, are made of reinforced concrete walls four to five feet thick lined with stainless steel.

The boiling-water reactors at Fukushima — 40 years old and designed by General Electric — have spent fuel pools several stories above ground adjacent to the top of the reactor. The hydrogen explosion may have blown off the roof covering the pool, as it's not under containment. The pool requires water circulation to remove decay heat. If this doesn't happen, the water will evaporate and possibly boil off. If a pool wall or support is compromised, then drainage is a concern. Once the water drops to around 5-6 feet above the assemblies, dose rates could be life-threatening near the reactor building. If significant drainage occurs, after several hours the zirconium cladding around the irradiated uranium could ignite.

Then all bets are off.

On average, spent fuel ponds hold five-to-ten times more long-lived radioactivity than a reactor core. Particularly worrisome is the large amount of cesium-137 in fuel ponds, which contain anywhere from 20 to 50 million curies of this dangerous radioactive isotope. With a half-life of 30 years, cesium-137 gives off highly penetrating radiation and is absorbed in the food chain as if it were potassium.

In comparison, the 1986 Chernobyl accident released about 40 percent of the reactor core’s 6 million curies. A 1997 report for the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) by Brookhaven National Laboratory also found that a severe pool fire could render about 188 square miles uninhabitable, cause as many as 28,000 cancer fatalities, and cost $59 billion in damage.

A single spent fuel pond holds more cesium-137 than was deposited by all atmospheric nuclear weapons tests in the Northern Hemisphere combined. Earthquakes and acts of malice are considered to be the primary events that can cause a major loss of pool water.

In 2003, my colleagues and I published a study that indicated if a spent fuel pool were drained in the United States, a major release of cesium-137 from a pool fire could render an area uninhabitable greater than created by the Chernobyl accident...............

Dangerous Radiation Release

If the fuel rods stored in the containment vessels are burning and the vessel is breached we (Japan and every country touched by its winds and weather) are going to be exposed to radioactive particles.

There are many kinds of radioactive particles and their dangers vary. We have no idea what types of particles are being released or how many of them.

I'll post as I find out...

Monday, March 14, 2011

Rumors that Reactor 4 is on Fire and That Radiation is Spreading
Detroit Free Press March 14 7:32 p.m. direct quote (see link for more)

TAGAJO, Japan — Japan warned of an alarming radiation leak from a stricken nuclear power plant and told people nearby to stay indoors to avoid becoming sick in a rapidly escalating national crisis following last week's earthquake and tsunami.

In a nationally televised statement, Prime Minister Naoto Kan said radiation has spread from the three reactors of the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear plant in one of the hardest-hit provinces in Friday's 9.0-magnitude earthquake and the ensuing tsunami.

"The level seems very high, and there is still a very high risk of more radiation coming out," Kan said.

He warned there are dangers of more leaks and told people living within 19 miles (30 kilometers) of the Fukushima Dai-ichi complex to stay indoors to avoid radiation sickness.

Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano said a fourth reactor at the complex was on fire and more radiation had been released.

"Now we are talking about levels that can damage human health. These are readings taken near the area where we believe the releases are happening. Far away, the levels should be lower," he said.



TOKYO — Japan’s nuclear crisis verged toward catastrophe on Tuesday, after an explosion at one crippled reactor damaged its crucial steel containment structure and a fire at another reactor spewed large amounts of radioactive material into the air, according to official statements and industry executives informed about the developments.

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

Officials said emergency efforts to pump seawater into three stricken reactors at the plant were continuing, but that most of the 800 workers at the Daiichi facility had been told to leave to avoid exposure to unhealthy levels of radiation at the plant. They said 50 workers would remain at the plant to pump seawater into three reactors and fight the fire at the fourth reactor.

Detecting Radiation in the US

Explosion at Fukushima Called Significant Nuclear Event


REACTOR #3 ALSO HAS HAD AN EXPLOSION (in the article they say Japanese authorities were tyring to prevent that)

REACTION#2 IS CURRENTLY IN MELTDOWN today march 14 (march 15 in Japan now)

Although radiation has been detected, it is not clear that the radiation indicates a rupture of the containment vessel. The plants have been "venting" radiated steam and so the radiation being detected could be from that rather than from a rupture in the containment vessel.,news-comment,news-politics,japan-nuclear-accident-could-be-second-chernobyl-fukushima
Explosion at Fukushima signals ‘significant’ nuclear event, says expert
By David Cairns
LAST UPDATED 1:33 PM, MARCH 13, 2011
ShareA British nuclear expert has told The First Post that the explosion at the Fukushima I nuclear plant looks likely to be a "significant nuclear event" with a bigger impact on public health than the 1979 meltdown at Three Mile Island.

John Large, who has been a nuclear analyst since the mid-1960s and is a Fellow of the Royal Society, says the Japanese government may be significantly downplaying the seriousness of the accident – and he believes it could have far-reaching consequences for the nuclear industry worldwide.

Fukushima I is just 40 miles from the epicentre of the closest of 248 separate seismic shocks which have taken place in the past week off the coast of Japan. A 'boiling water' plant, it has six reactors.

Dramatic footage of an explosion at the plant's No 1 reactor on Saturday has commanded global attention. Now the Japanese government says it is fighting to prevent a second meltdown at No 3 reactor.

Read more:,news-comment,news-politics,japan-nuclear-accident-could-be-second-chernobyl-fukushima#ixzz1GbKx0NAe

Latest on No 2 Reactor: Meltdown???
Full text of article

Crisis continues at Fukushima nuclear plant as fuel rods exposed again
TOKYO, March 15, Kyodo

A crisis continued Tuesday at the troubled No. 2 reactor at the quake-hit Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant, as fuel rods became fully exposed again after workers recovered water levels to cover half of them in a bid to prevent overheating.

The plant operator, Tokyo Electric Power Co., said a steam vent of the pressure container of the reactor that houses the rods it was closed for some reason, raising fears that its core will melt at a faster pace. It said it will try to open the vent to resume the operation to inject seawater to cool down the reactor.

Despite its earlier attempt to do so, however, water levels sharply fell and the fuel rods were fully exposed for about 140 minutes in the evening as a fire pump to pour cooling seawater into the reactor ran out of fuel and it took time for workers to release steam from the reactor to lower its pressure, the government's nuclear safety agency said.

Water levels in the No. 2 reactor later went up to cover more than half of the rods that measure about 4 meters at one point. TEPCO began pouring coolant water into the reactor after the cooling functions failed earlier in the day.

Prior to the second full exposure of the rods around 11 p.m., radiation was detected at 9:37 p.m. at a level twice the maximum seen so far -- 3,130 micro sievert per hour, according to TEPCO.

To ease concerns, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano said he believes the problem at the plant ''will not develop into a situation similar to the (1986 accident at the atomic power reactor in) Chernobyl'' in the Soviet Union, even in the worst case.

Officials of the Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency also said the worst case scenario will be less destructive than the Chernobyl incident, as TEPCO has depressurized the reactors by releasing radioactive steam.

The utility said a hydrogen explosion at the nearby No. 3 reactor that occurred Monday morning may have caused a glitch in the cooling system of the No. 2 reactor.

Similar cooling down efforts have been made at the plant's No. 1 and No. 3 reactors and explosions occurred at both reactors in the process, blowing away the roofs and walls of the buildings that house the reactors.

Edano denied the possibility that the No. 2 reactor will follow the same path, as the blast at the No. 3 reactor opened a hole in the wall of the building that houses the No. 2 reactor. Hydrogen will be released from the hole, he said.

The blast earlier in the day injured 11 people but the reactor's containment vessel was not damaged, with the government dismissing the possibility of a large amount of radioactive material being dispersed, as radiation levels did not jump after the explosion.

TEPCO said seven workers at the site and four members of the Self-Defense Forces were injured.

Since the magnitude 9.0 quake hit northeastern Japan last Friday, some reactors at the Fukushima No. 1 plant have lost their cooling functions, leading to brief rises in radiation levels.

As a result, the cores of the No. 1 and No. 3 reactors have partially melted.

The government ordered residents within a 20-kilometer radius of the plant to evacuate Saturday in the wake of the initial blast at the plant's No. 1 reactor. A total of 354 people are still attempting to leave the area, according to the nuclear agency.

The agency ruled out the possibility of broadening the area subject to the evacuation order for now.


Are the Japanese Lying About the Scope of the Radiation Dangers?

We are now talking about 3 reactors that have either partially or fully melted down. Radiation has been detected in the environment. I simply do not believe that radiation levels are safe in the immediate vicinity.

That said, the greatest danger still is a core meltdown that breaches containment devices in an explosive manner....

NEWS ADVISORY: Fuel rods at No. 2 reactor fully exposed for about 2.5 hours: agency

"Japanese officials are playing down any health risk, but the US said it had moved one of its aircraft carriers from the area after detecting low-level radiation 100 miles (160km) offshore."

"Fukushima No. 2 reactor's fuel rods fully exposed, melting feared"

US helicopters and ships are moving away from Japanese coast because of "low level" radiation. Yah, sure....

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Reuters: Fukushima Daiichi nuclear reactor No. 3 Explosion

Reuters is reporting that the Japanese authorities would not confirm or not whether the hydrogen explosion had led to an uncontrolled leak of radiation.

It seems pretty fricken obvious to me that if they aren't confirming it, the reason is that the answer is YES.

Containment is Not Working at (least) 1 of the Reactors in Japan

"At one medical facility in Koriyama, about one hour from Fukushima, about 1 in 5 people being tested for high radiation levels are being referred to a hospital for further testing. About 1,000 people have been tested so far, officials said..."

ADDITIONALLY, a MAJOR release of radioactivity would find its way to the US west coast, although exposure would be low in all probability

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Links for Japan Nuclear Meltdown Worst Case Scenario?


A meltdown is not the worst case scenario. The worst case scenario occurs when the floor of the containment vessel cracks. Here are two links discussing concerns.

I've included a blurb describing the worst case scenario from the second link. We have no way of knowing right now how bad the situation really is.

There is growing evidence that fission occurred since atomic byproducts have been detected outside the plant. However, if the containment walls are intact the danger to the public is relatively minimal.

The second link has a discussion of the worst case scenario:

"Did the floor of the containment vessel crack? If not, the situation can still be salvaged by somehow re-containing the nuclear core. But if the floor has cracked, it is highly likely that the melting fuel will burn through the floor of the containment system and enter the ground. This has never happened before but has always been the nightmare scenario for a nuclear power event — in this scenario, containment goes from being merely dangerous, time consuming and expensive to nearly impossible.

Read more: Red Alert: Nuclear Meltdown at Quake-Damaged Japanese Plant STRATFOR

Japanese Quake Moved Earth's Axis

How will we know if there really is or was a meltdown occurring at the plant?

As we have learned from previous disasters, including the Gulf of Mexico's ongoing disaster, governments' lie and lie and lie about the scope and severity of disasters.

Was There a Core Meltdown in the Japanese Nuclear Power Plant?


Sunday, March 13, 2011

Meltdown Caused Nuke Plant Explosion: Safety BodyTOKYO (Nikkei)--The Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency (NISA) said Saturday afternoon the explosion at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant could only have been caused by a meltdown of the reactor core.

The same day, Tokyo Electric Power Co. (9501), which runs the plant, began to flood the damaged reactor with seawater to cool it down, resorting to measures that could rust the reactor and force the utility to scrap it.

Cesium and iodine, by-products of nuclear fission, were detected around the plant, which would make the explosion the worst accident in the roughly 50-year history of Japanese nuclear power generation.

An explosion was heard near the plant's No. 1 reactor about 3:30 p.m. and plumes of white smoke went up 10 minutes later. The ceiling of the building housing the reactor collapsed, according to information obtained by Fukushima prefectural authorities.

At a news conference Saturday night, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano discounted the possibility of a significant leak of radioactive material from the accident. "The walls of the building containing the reactor were destroyed, meaning that the metal container encasing the reactor did not explode," Edano said.

The amount of radiation detected inside the plant after 4:00 p.m. slightly exceeded the dose people can safely receive in a year, according to information obtained by the Fukushima prefectural government.

The No. 1 reactor shut down automatically soon after a massive earthquake hit the area Friday, but its emergency core cooling system failed to cool the reactor's core sufficiently.

NISA is affiliated with the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry.

(The Nikkei March 13 edition)

Friday, March 11, 2011

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Shock Doctrine and the Privatization of Whole Towns by Fiat

Listen to Naomi Klein on Democracy Now

Naomi Klein on Anti-Union Bills and Shock Doctrine American-Style: "This is a Frontal Assault on Democracy, It’s a Kind of a Corporate Coup D’Etat"

AN ABSOLUTE MUST SEE VIDEO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Congressional Report on Contractor Report

This report was mentioned by Stacey Herbert on Max Keiser's show today.

Last week Max interviewed Paul Craig Roberts, who stated that the two most powerful plutarchs in the US are the financial industry and the defense industry.

This report demonstrates clearly that the pillaging is going on by both groups.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Amazing Links

An FBI Translator just publicly stated that Bin Laden worked for US up until 9-11. Here is what the Daily Kos reports:

"Former FBI translator Sibel Edmonds dropped a bombshell on the Mike Malloy radio show, guest-hosted by Brad Friedman (audio, partial transcript).

"In the interview, Sibel says that the US maintained 'intimate relations' with Bin Laden, and the Taliban, "all the way until that day of September 11."

"These 'intimate relations' included using Bin Laden for 'operations' in Central Asia, including Xinjiang, China. These 'operations' involved using al Qaeda and the Taliban in the same manner "as we did during the Afghan and Soviet conflict," that is, fighting 'enemies' via proxies...."

read whole story at link above

Now for another sobering and thought provoking link.

Nature has published an article that asks whether the earth's 6th mass extinction event has begun

here is the abstract of the article by quite a few scientists:

"Palaeontologists characterize mass extinctions as times when the Earth loses more than three-quarters of its species in a geologically short interval, as has happened only five times in the past 540 million years or so. Biologists now suggest that a sixth mass extinction may be under way, given the known species losses over the past few centuries and millennia. Here we review how differences between fossil and modern data and the addition of recently available palaeontological information influence our understanding of the current extinction crisis. Our results confirm that current extinction rates are higher than would be expected from the fossil record, highlighting the need for effective conservation measures. "

On a lighter note, here is an article about 5 things unions have accomplished for working Americans

Finally, how about a polemic by Micheal Moore on why the US has plenty of money.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

Oil Prices and the Economy

Peak oil simply means that oil production peaks relative to the costs of inputs (that is, the cost of producing it).

Many people believe we are post-peak oil. I don't know the answer to this question but it is clear that oil production and distribution have all kinds of costs that are not payed at the pumpt, including the lives of soldiers who die overseas in oil wars, the citizens of developing countries forced to live and die with their "resource curse" of oil deposits, and environmental destruction on scales truly difficult to comprehend (as in Nigeria and the Gulf of Mexico, among other oil damaged locales).

Oil is a terrible addiction.

What happens if the pump cost of our gas goes up further because of instability in the developing world or simply because of rising global demand?

There goes our economic "recovery," if you can call unprecedented declines in the percentage of the working population a "recovery"

There is a good article today at zero hedge examining the issue of peak oil and the costs of rising oil prices. The comments are worth reading as well:

Friday, March 4, 2011

Gallup on Unemployment and Underemployment
March 3, 2011

Gallup Finds U.S. Unemployment Hitting 10.3% in FebruaryUnderemployment surged to 19.9% in February from 18.9% at the end of Januaryby Dennis Jacobe, Chief EconomistPRINCETON, NJ -- Unemployment, as measured by Gallup without seasonal adjustment, hit 10.3% in February -- up from 9.8% at the end of January. The U.S. unemployment rate is now essentially the same as the 10.4% at the end of February 2010....

"The percentage of part-time workers who want full-time work worsened considerably in February, increasing to 9.6% of the workforce from 9.1% at the end of January. A larger percentage of the U.S. workforce is working part time and wanting full-time work now than was the case a year ago (9.3%)...

"Underemployment, a measure that combines part-time workers wanting full-time work with those who are unemployed, surged in February to 19.9%. This resulted from the combination of a sharp 0.5-point increase since the end of January in the percentage unemployed and a 0.5-point increase in the percentage working part time but wanting full-time work. Underemployment is now higher than it was at this point a year ago (19.7%).

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

David C. Johnston: Who Contributes to Public Workers' Pensions?
Really Bad Reporting in Wisconsin: Who 'Contributes' to Public Workers' Pensions?
David Cay Johnston Feb. 24, 2011 12:16 PM EST

"When it comes to improving public understanding of tax policy, nothing has been more troubling than the deeply flawed coverage of the Wisconsin state employees' fight over collective bargaining.

Economic nonsense is being reported as fact in most of the news reports on the Wisconsin dispute, the product of a breakdown of skepticism among journalists multiplied by their lack of understanding of basic economic principles.

Gov. Scott Walker says he wants state workers covered by collective bargaining agreements to "contribute more" to their pension and health insurance plans.

Accepting Gov. Walker' s assertions as fact, and failing to check, created the impression that somehow the workers are getting something extra, a gift from taxpayers. They are not.

Out of every dollar that funds Wisconsin' s pension and health insurance plans for state workers, 100 cents comes from the state workers..."

read the full article to understand how the media are distorting the facts...

"You are Being LIED To": The Oil is Still There!

Only where the hotels are is there any cleaning going on.

Yet the beaches are covered with oil clumps, EVERYWHERE!

"Why are we being kept in the dark?"