[gha] Updating you on Fukushima

  • From: "Michael Ellis" <mindquest@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: <peace-from-harmony@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Thu, 31 Oct 2013 11:58:33 +1100


Dear All

Updating you on Fukushima

Please join Harry Wasserman`s petition. If you are connected in high places
-Please contact your heads of Governments. Also above all send your prayers
for a harmonious balanced integral world and safety for all







Published on Wednesday, October 30, 2013 by  <http://www.commondreams.org/>
Common Dreams

Japan Greenlights 'Perilous' Cleanup at Fukushima's Reactor 4

Removal of 1,300 spent fuel rods deemed 'humankind's most dangerous moment
since Cuban Missile Crisis'

- Lauren McCauley, staff writer

ma_reactor_4.jpgA worker in a protective suit and mask stands atop the badly
damaged Unit Four reactor building at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant.
(Photo: ISSEI KATO/AFP/Getty Images)Regulators with Japan's Nuclear
Regulation Authority gave the final OK Wednesday for the operator of the
crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant to begin to remove the 1300
spent fuel rods from the badly damaged Unit 4 pool, thus initiating a
decommissioning process which anti-nuclear activist Harvey Wasserman
<http://www.commondreams.org/view/2013/09/20-1> describes as "humankind's
most dangerous moment since the Cuban Missile Crisis."

-water/3313061/> According to Associated Press, the NRA announced that the
proposal to manually remove the radioactive rods put forth by the plant
operator, Tokyo Electric Power Co. or TEPCO, was "appropriate" and that the
removal "can start in November as planned, following an on-site inspection
by regulators."

TEPCO estimates that the complete decommissioning process will last decades.
Detailing the process, AP reports:

TEPCO has prepared a massive steel structure that comes with a
remote-controlled crane to remove the fuel rods, which will be placed into a
protective cask and transferred to a joint cooling pool inside a nearby
building. To make room for the Unit 4 fuel rods, the company has been moving
those already in the joint pool to safer storage in dry casks at a separate
plant location.

The utility plans to empty the Unit 4 pool by end of 2014, and remove fuel
rods from other pools at three other wrecked reactors over several years
before digging into their melted cores around 2020.

However, according to nuclear engineer Arnie Gundersen, the spent fuel rods
in the Unit 4 core are "bent, damaged and embrittled to the point of
crumbling." And NRA chairman Shunichi Tanaka warned that removing the rods
would be difficult because of the risk posed by debris that fell into the
pool during the explosions triggered by the 2011 earthquake, tsunami and
subsequent three reactor meltdowns at the plant.

"It's a totally different operation than removing normal fuel rods from a
spent fuel pool," Tanaka said during the news conference Wednesday. "They
need to be handled extremely carefully and closely monitored. You should
never rush or force them out, or they may break."

Wasserman warns that there are "some 400 tons of fuel in that pool [that]
could spew out more than 15,000 times as much radiation as was released at

Wasserman, Gundersen and other nuclear watchdogs
<http://www.commondreams.org/headline/2013/10/24-3> have warned that neither
TEPCO nor the Japanese government has the "scientific, engineering or
financial resources to handle" the job and that the situation instead
demands a "coordinated worldwide effort of the best scientists and engineers
our species can muster."

Over 100,000 people have thus far signed a
<http://petitions.moveon.org/sign/the-world-community-must> petition echoing
that call.  "[T]he impending removal of hugely radioactive spent fuel rods
from a pool 100 feet in the air presents unparalleled scientific and
engineering challenges," caution the signees, who are calling on President
Obama and UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon to intercept the Japanese
authority's process. "We ask the world community [...] to take control of
this uniquely perilous task."


This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0


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