In spite of the enormous danger that the Daiichi nuclear plant in Fukushima poses to the global community, especially the Norther Hemisphere, TEPCO has no plans to begin removal of the more than 1,500 fuel rods from No. 4 reactor building. (I believe these are fuel rod assemblies, however on that issue, I am not sure.) Evidently, TEPCO is now an earthquake expert (Heavy sarcasm) and must possess knowledge the rest of the global community remains unaware of, or in the alternative, are downright negligent and fail to understand that another earthquake could strike that area today, tomorrow, or in 10 years. This is something that cannot be predicted by anyone, and I believe that it’s time for the United Nations Security Council to address their obvious criminal incompetence! (Criminal because they are endangering their own nation as well as the entire world.):
UPDATE: No moving spent fuel at No. 4 until 2014 at earliest — Up to 10 years for removal of fuel from all pools — Reactor building to be demolished (VIDEO)
Published: April 17th, 2012 at 3:45 am ET
Title: Workers prepare No.4 pool for fuel removal
Date: Tuesday, April 17, 2012 11:17 +0900 (JST)
[...] Before the [No. 4 reactor building] can be demolished, more than 1,500 fuel rods have to be removed [...]
On Tuesday, Tokyo Electric Power Company will begin attaching a special crane to take the fuel out of the pool and constructing a cover to prevent the spread of radioactive materials from the building. [...]
Unlike the shroud that entirely covers the No. 1 reactor building, the structure will cover only the upper part of the pool [...] (My emphasis)
TEPCO will also install a filter to prevent the spread of radioactive materials.
The cover is expected to be completed by autumn next year. Spent nuclear fuel will then be removed [...]
Watch the report here
Will this include any work on the weekends? See: Weekends off at Fukushima: Not one plant worker could be seen says Asahi — Operational equipment lay idle — A cold eerie quietness
UPDATE via Wall Street Journal: “Tepco says it’s working to remove the fuel rods as fast as it can. If all goes according to its timetable, the utility could start taking the rods out in 2014. [Senator] Wyden points out, though, that the schedule allows up to ten years to get all the spent fuel in all the Fukushima reactor pools out” LINK
This is an excerpt from the ModernSurvivalBlog.com , and I urge you to read the rest of the story they have posted and what the effects of Buildings 3 & 4 would have on the United States and the rest of the world. Hopefully, extremely soon, we will have a petition to address this situation to be delivered to the U.S. Congress and the United Nations Security Council, a it isn’t just us in the United States whom are at risk:
Posted: 24 Apr 2012 09:52 AM PDT
The current TEPCO (Tokyo Electric Power Company) plan calls for the nuclear fuel rods of the severely damaged ‘Daiichi’ nuclear power plant fuel-pool #4 to NOT begin removal until possibly 2014. That’s right, 2 more years before they might start the 10-year process of removing fuel rods there according to a report in the Wall Street Journal.
Tepco says it’s working to remove the fuel rods as fast as it can. If all goes according to its timetable, the utility could start taking the rods out in 2014.
…the schedule allows up to ten years to get all the spent fuel in all the Fukushima reactor pools out.
Fukushima Daiichi suffered meltdowns at three of its reactors last year after the March 11 earthquake and tsunami knocked out power in the area. Much of the nuclear fuel in those three reactors is thought to be in a melted lump at the bottom of the vessels that surround the core.
Another big earthquake or tsunami could send Fukushima Daiichi’s fragile reactor buildings tumbling down, resulting in “an even greater release of radiation than the initial accident,”
Source: The Wall Street Journal, http://blogs.wsj.com/
The fuel pools are 100 feet above the ground, entirely open to the atmosphere (except for the water constantly being pumped into them) because the nuclear reactor buildings were blown apart by explosions back during 2011. The fuel pool (#4) which holds more than 10,000 nuclear rods could collapse from structural damage, should another strong earthquake occur there, and scatter the rods all over the ground. Emergency worker access to these rods will be impossible (except for suicide missions) as they will be emitting lethal levels of gamma radiation. The fuel rods will quickly heat up and ignite/explode, releasing massive clouds of radiation into the atmosphere.
The only thing saving the planet from exposure to 85x Chernobyl is the few feet of water covering the rods at this very moment. There is no other containment. Period. In fact, the fuel pool apparently is, and has been, leaking. A constant re-supply of water is required to avert total disaster. MUCH, MUCH MORE!
Explosion at Japan chemical complex, still burning — 3,379 containers of nuclear waste onsite — Reports of depleted uranium — Gov’t says no release of toxic material (PHOTOS & VIDEO)
UPDATED I: Second explosion at Mitsui plant — FNN confirms depleted uranium — Kyodo: 3,400 drums with radioactive materials — “Did not appear to have any effect on radiation levels” (VIDEOS)
UPDATE II: NHK: Another Mitsui chemical plant had trouble BEFORE multiple explosions — All plants were halted at time of blasts (VIDEO)
UPDATE III: AFP: Officials “waiting for combustible materials to burn out” after Japan explosions — Fire not extinguished — May take days to determine cause
Title: (UPDATED) Explosion at Petrochemical Complex in Yamaguchi Prefecture, Radioactive Waste Stored at the Complex
Date: April 21, 2012
UPDATE: One of the two missing workers was found dead. 9 workers injured, 3 residents in the area were also injured (cuts from broken glass). It looks like part of the complex is still burning. The prefectural government does say the depleted uranium is stored at the complex, but there has been no release of toxic materials from the fire, according to the prefectural government. [...]
Someone on Twitter has dug up information from the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) that lists companies that have radioactive waste on the premise. Mitsui Chemical’s complex in Yamaguchi Prefecture is one of them. According to the MEXT data from 2009, the complex has 3,379 containers of nuclear waste. [...]
h/t Fukushima Diary
I won’t add a lot of commentary to this post, as it doesn’t need it. This latest incident should shock us all, and the rank stupidity the Japanese exhibited when someone there made the decision to store nuclear waste at a Petochemical complex is absolutely unbelievable:
Posted by Alexander Higgins – April 21, 2012 at 6:14 pm
A chemical complex containing nuclear fuel is engulfed in a massive fire at Mitsui chemicals after a lightning strike caused an explosion.
The Fukushima Diary alerts us an alarming story about a lightning strike that caused an explosion and a massive fire at a chemical complex used to store nuclear fuel and radioactive waste.
The Iwakuni plant is still on fire according to the report and is reported to have 3379 55 gallon drums containing nuclear radioactive waste as well as Uranium rods used for nuclear fuel at the site.
Several people are reported to be injured following the explosion which occurred at 2:20 local time at Iwakuni Otake Petrochemical Complex of Mitsui chemicals.
So far there is no word from officials on the status of the nuclear fuel or radioactive waste stored at the plant.
Storing nuclear fuel and radioactive waste at an plant chemical plant that processes highly combustible oil products is a really dumb idea so you get what we have there today. MUCH MORE
If the next story doesn’t scare the crap out of you and cause you to demand that immediate action be taken, I suggest you quit burying your head in the sand…
Fukushima Could Still Armageddon The World
The world has become largely desensitized to what has happened and what is still happening in the wake of the nuclear disaster at the Daiichi nuclear plant in Fukushima Japan more than a year ago. Arnie Gunderson of Fairewinds Associates, with more than 40 years experience in the nuclear industry explains that the three reactors continue to melt down. However even more disconcerting is the apparent fact that the ‘fuel pools’ of reactors 3 and 4 may be threatening the whole Northern Hemisphere.
You see, the fuel pools (the nuclear fuel storage pools) are themselves suspended three and four stories high in the air, and have badly damaged structural support. Should either of these fall over and lose their cooling fluid, the thousands of fuel rods will overheat and explode, and threaten a world scale disaster never before seen.
Even a crack in the fuel pool would be enough to bring on catastrophe, and at a minimum, be the end of Tokyo, as reported on Asahi TV and translated on enenews.com.
The present conditions of Unit 4 are like this. You see, almost no walls. They were blown off, and honestly speaking, the Unit 4 is a wreck. A wreck.
Now, what if an earthquake occurred right now and the water in the pool started to leak?
I asked this question to Dr. Koide.
If a large aftershock occurred and the wall here collapsed, the water in the pool would leak out and the spent fuel would not be cooled any more. Then, they would start to melt, probably completely. And huge amount of radiation contained in the spend fuel would be released outside, with no walls to block it.
What if a destructive earthquake occurred during those years?
That would be the end. The end? Yes.
You see, that would be the end.
TEPCO knows dealing with this problem is most important for now.
Reactor #3 had completely blown it’s walls apart leaving the fuel pool (what’s left of it) and the rest of the rubble entirely open. Reactor #4 had it’s roof blown off and has almost no walls remaining. The primary concern is that of earthquakes in the region, and the possibility of an already weakened structure collapsing, leaving no further means to manually keep the thousands of spent fuel rods cool.
I read the following comment from a professor of physics, “There is no containment – between you and hundreds of tons of spent and fresh fuel is just some water, and air, and time. Ask yourself – what is the next step with the Unit 4 spent fuel pool? What has been done in the past year except to fill it with water and hope for the best? What happens if it fails catastrophically?”
The situation there, is and has been on the razor edge of full-on world catastrophe.
Japan’s former Ambassador to Switzerland, Mr. Mitsuhei Murata, was invited to speak at the Public Hearing of the Budgetary Committee of the House of Councilors on March 22, 2012, on the Fukushima nuclear power plants accident. Before the Committee, Ambassador Murata strongly stated that if the crippled building of reactor unit 4—with 1,535 fuel rods in the spent fuel pool 100 feet (30 meters) above the ground—collapses, not only will it cause a shutdown of all six reactors but will also affect the common spent fuel pool containing 6,375 fuel rods, located some 50 meters from reactor 4. In both cases the radioactive rods are not protected by a containment vessel; dangerously, they are open to the air. This would certainly cause a global catastrophe like we have never before experienced. He stressed that the responsibility of Japan to the rest of the world is immeasurable. Such a catastrophe would affect us all for centuries. Ambassador Murata informed us that the total numbers of the spent fuel rods at the Fukushima Daiichi site excluding the rods in the pressure vessel is 11,421 (396+615+566+1,535+994+940+6375). MUCH MORE PLEASE VISIT THE LINK. THERE IS FAR MORE INFORMATION THAN I HAVE POSTED HERE, PLUS PHOTOS AND GRAPHICS THE ILLUSTRATE THE DANGER ALL OF US FACE!
Part of the anger I’m feeling right now is aimed directly at our corporate controlled Mainstream News (Sic) Media, who report upon what their Corporate Masters allow them to, even if the truth would cause such an outrage that the global community would demand immediate action. One more Great Quake in Japan or Tsunami could/would result in devastating radiation being released that will impact North America and place everyone in the United States and the entire global community is at risk. We will be starting a petition on this issue as soon as possible, but for now, trying to spread the word is of the utmost importance to us and the rest of the global community.
I’m 61 years old and I hereby volunteer to work in the high-radiation area at the Daiichi nuclear plant in Fukushima; (If I go, someone needs to step-up and assist my Sister and her two children who depend on me financially until she receives her SSI.) I’m betting that there are thousands of other grandparents who have lived a full life that would do the same right here in the United States. Protecting our families from this potential disaster must be our number one priority for the moment, and if the Japanese won’t get in there and do something immediately, the Global Community must show some guts and do it themselves!
If you don’t believe that your life and family could be in danger, read this:
Based on U.S. Energy Department data, assuming a total of 11,138 spent fuel assemblies are being stored at the Dai-Ichi site, nearly all, which is in pools. They contain roughly 336 million curies (~1.2 E+19 Bq) of long-lived radioactivity. About 134 million curies is Cesium-137 — roughly 85 times the amount of Cs-137 released at the Chernobyl accident as estimated by the U.S. National Council on Radiation Protection (NCRP). The total spent reactor fuel inventory at the Fukushima-Daichi site contains nearly half of the total amount of Cs-137 estimated by the NCRP to have been released by all atmospheric nuclear weapons testing, Chernobyl, and world-wide reprocessing plants (~270 million curies or ~9.9 E+18 Becquerel).
A recent quote in the Japan Times says it all, from Hiroshi Tasaka, who has a doctorate in nuclear engineering and is now a professor at Tama University, “The biggest risk during the meltdown crisis wasn’t the reactors themselves but the spent fuel pools sitting atop them, particularly the one above reactor 4, which still contains about 1,500 nuclear fuel assemblies;” “I would say the crisis just opened Pandora’s box“. (My emphasis) LINK
I’m dead serious (no pun intended) in regard volunteering to go to Japan and work in that area. It’s also my belief that thousands of other Americans who have already lived a full life would do the same for their families without any hesitation whatsoever if they were allowed to do so. With the recent Earthquake Activity everyone has witnessed, this is a disaster waiting to happen, and we must demand that it be addressed IMMEDIATELY!
Excuse me, but I have to quit writing. I’m so angry right now I can barely type.