March 31, 2011

From bad to worse in Japan

"The number of dead and missing from the earthquake and tsunami had reached 27,652 as of 9 p.m. yesterday, Japan's National Police Agency said."

"The risk to workers might be greater than previously thought because melted fuel in the No. 1 reactor building may be causing isolated, uncontrolled nuclear chain reactions, Denis Flory, nuclear safety director for the International Atomic Energy Agency, said at a press conference in Vienna."

"Radioactive chlorine found March 25 in the Unit 1 turbine building suggests chain reactions continued after the reactor shut down, physicist Ferenc Dalnoki-Veress of the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies in Monterey, California, wrote in a March 28 paper. Radioactive chlorine has a half-life of 37 minutes, according to the report."

"Cesium 137, was measured in one village by the International Atomic Energy Agency at a level exceeding the standard that the Soviet Union used as a gauge to recommend abandoning land surrounding the Chernobyl reactor, and at another location not precisely identified by the agency at more than double the Soviet standard." 

"The international team, using a measure of radioactivity called the becquerel, found as much as 3.7 million becquerels per square meter; the standard used at Chernobyl was 1.48 million."

"Hidehiko Nishiyama, deputy director general of the Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency, said that seawater collected about 300 yards from the Fukushima Daiichi station was found to contain iodine 131 at 3,355 times the safety standard, the highest levels reported so far."

"Tsunehisa Katsumata, chairman of Tokyo Electric, said that "we have no choice but to scrap" Reactors 1, 2, 3 and 4."

"Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano yesterday ruled out the possibility that the two undamaged reactors at Tokyo Electric Power Co.'s six-unit Dai-Ichi plant would be salvaged."

"Dismantling the plant and decontaminating the site may take 30 years and cost Tokyo Electric more than 1 trillion yen ($12 billion), engineers and analysts said."
"Tokyo Electric's shareholders may be wiped out by clean-up costs and liabilities stemming from the nuclear accident, the worst since Chernobyl. The company faces claims of as much as 11 trillion yen if the crisis lasts two years and potential takeover by the government, according to a March 29 Bank of America Merrill Lynch report."

Fukushima's is releasing radioactive fallout at a daily rate almost as high as that from Chernobyl during the first 10 days of that disaster. "iodine-131 is being released at daily levels 73 per cent of those seen after the 1986 disaster. The daily amount of caesium-137 released from Fukushima Daiichi is around 60 per cent of the amount released from Chernobyl." 







Post a Comment