CNN just announced that Americans are being told by the US government to get outside a 50 mile radius of the Fukushima Daiichi reactor complex. Nuclear radiation measuring higher.
Apparently many airports are covered with people making their way out of Japan. There are readings being made more extensively along the coast of China and nearby nations – told in a story very early this morning.
Above is the link with the ongoing coverage from Japan – below is the Reuters updates ongoing from Japan about the situation –
Thompson and others were critical of the practice of discussing radiation levels at the microsievert level, which is 1/1000 of a millisievert, and a tiny, tiny fraction of a sievert.
The median fatal dose for exposure to radiation is on the order of 3 to 4 sieverts within a period of hours, Dr Thompson said.
by aaron.pressman at 9:04 PM
Experts at the Harvard School of Public Health are urging people to pay less attention to current low levels of radiation measured away from the plant itself and worry more/prepare for the potential that a large radiation release could occur. “At far distances radiation from this event has led to quite small increases in naturally occurring exposures,” said Gordon Thompson, a plasma physicist and executive director of the Institute for Resource and Security Studies. “We really should be focused on very large and potentially fatal doses that could occur if there is a significant release.”
by aaron.pressman at 3/16/2011 8:44:36 PM8:44 PM
As of last night our time, China had sent buses to get their citizens away from the zones affected by the earthquake, tsunami and particularly the areas around the Fukushima plant – within a distance west, south and north of it.
The best way to view NHK world is directly on their site – they have an HD stream that is fantastic quality. www3.nhk.or.jp
comment by sang at 3/16/2011 8:44:34 PM8:44 PM
My Note –
There is also asahi tv with good coverage in Japan.
Finally there has been some information from the IAEA chairman about this – a little earlier on CNN and they had a map which included all the nuclear power plants around the world which was shown at 4.11 pm today on CNN and would likely be found on their site – more info on that can be found also on the US Nuclear Regulatory Commission site and on the IAEA site online.
U.S. urges Americans within 50 miles of Japanese nuclear plant to evacuate; NRC chief outlines dangerous situation
By Brian Vastag, Rick Maese and David A. Fahrenthold, Wednesday, March 16, 4:54 PM
The United States on Wednesday urged Americans who live within 50 miles of Japan’s earthquake-damaged Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant to evacuate, and the top U.S. nuclear regulatory official indicated that Japan faces an increasingly dangerous situation at one of the plant’s reactors.
Gregory Jaczko, chairman of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, said Wednesday that no water remains in a pool used to cool spent fuel at the plant and that radiation levels there are thought to be “extremely high.”
Left exposed to the air, the fuel rods will start to decay and release radioactivity into the air.
The spent fuel pool at another reactor, unit 3, also appeared compromised, Jaczko said.
G7 Finance Ministers Will Hold Conference Call On Japan Late Thursday – G7 Source – Reuters
MiamiHerald.com – Tom Lasseter – 26 minutes ago
BEIJING — Responding to the unfolding nuclear crisis in Japan, the Chinese government announced Wednesday that it is suspending plans for new nuclear power plants so that safety standards could be revised and has ordered inspections of …
Video: Radiation Forces Pullout Around Japan Plant The Associated Press Video:
Radiation Forces Pullout Around Japan Plant
The Associated Press
Nuclear power lobbyists try to limit damage Washington Post
(just now – 5.38pmEDT)
Japan told of quake risk to nuclear plants two years ago: paper
London (Platts) – 16 Mar 2011/448pmEDT/2048 GMT
The International Atomic Energy Agency warned Japan more than two years ago that its nuclear power plants would not be able to withstand powerful earthquakes, Britain’s Daily Telegraph newspaper reported Wednesday, citing leaked diplomatic cables.
The paper quoted an IAEA official saying in December 2008 that safety rules at the plants were out of date and that strong tremors would pose a “serious problem”.
Worries about safety at Japan’s nuclear plants were raised during a meeting of the G8’s Nuclear Safety and Security Group in Tokyo in 2008, the paper said.
It said it had seen a US embassy cable obtained by the Wikileaks website quoting an unnamed expert who voiced concern that guidance on how to protect nuclear power plants from earthquakes had been updated only three times in the previous 35 years.
Japan Nuclear Agency To Brief Press At 8:00pm ET
Fission has to be occurring because the meltdown of the rods would have decimated the way that control rods were intended to stop the fission process for shutdown. There are 80 – 90 tonnes of fuel rods per reactor and then up to 5-6 times that amount of spent fuel rods in the cooling pools within the containment facilities per reactor – times four near one another and two more nearby.
The fuel rods melted to some extent – the design which ensured fission would stop using the system of the control rods is totally compromised and would not be able to operate under these circumstances.
Whoever’s opinion it was earlier on the news today that came from the nuclear industry that these plants were safe by virtue of the system in place using the control rods for cold shutdown – did not account for the fact that meltdowns within the rudimentary cooling pools and containment vessels – already has occurred – one two days ago with unprotected, uncooled fuel rods exposed to the air for some period of hours – then the other two reactors nearby had the same problems and were left uncovered for a certain period of time which did definitely melt some of the fuel rods within the system.
Fission would have to be occurring consequently.
And – is our nuclear industry really saying to us that they can’t be bothered to make sure that back-up generators are placed above where water damage or other natural disaster’s affects might reach them? Are they really saying through their industry lobbyists that they don’t want to take a look at that one thing and maybe change to a better location some additional back-up power generators and safety systems where they might be needed in our nuclear power plants? Surely not.
It is a reasonable request.
Extending the timeliness of reactions to an event, a demand for transparency and truthfulness when an event occurs and making an extended range of evacuation areas to a genuinely safer range – like 50 miles instead of three – seem like perfectly reasonable requests of an industry that can damage everything around them. It is also reasonable that in older plants where the backup generators are required – that these not be at sea level or in the basement or next to a river’s flood plain. And, if they are – that more back-up generators be put in place for the facilities in the US and around the world – which are better protected from damage.
At the very least – that can be done for every existing plant.