Monday, March 10, 2014

Fukushima Anniversary: Nuclear is the Road Toward Our Extinction

Please see a condensed transcript of my interview with Voice of Russia here:

Nuclear power is the road to our extinction

Here are my responses to their interview questions:

1. Three years ago a disastrous tsunami and earthquake killed nearly 19000 people and set off the nuclear crisis in Japan. Did the region manage to recover from the catastrophe? What are the current results of its recovery?

Contaminated water production continues at the site as ground water and water injected for cooling encounter uncontained nuclear fuel:

The volume of contaminated water in storage continues to rise: Currently TEPCO reports 1000 tanks hold 350,000 tons of highly contaminated water, which is emitting radiation, including Xrays and beta radiation.

Contaminated water continues to flow into ocean:
“The most troubling problem is dealing with the buildup of radioactive water, which is increasing at a rate of 400 tons in the reactor buildings every day, and another 400 tons of lightly contaminated water that seeps daily into the Pacific” SOURCE: K. Nagata (2014, March 6, 2014), Solving Fukushima water problem a long, hard slog. The Japan Times,
It appears that high-level radioactive contaminated water from tunnels extending from the No. 1 to No. 4 reactor building is flowing into the sea. SOURCE: ‘New steps worked out to deal with contaminated water Yomiuri Shimbun, Mar. 6, 2014:
Atmospheric pollution continues:
TEPCO claims ‘airborne radiation levels outside’ the Daiichi site are 8 millisieverts a year and derive mainly from radiation produced by storage tanks. ‘TEPCO aims to cut airborne radiation from Fukushima Plant to One-Eighth’ The Asahi Shimbun (2014, Feb 15),

2. The nuclear catastrophe had a great impact on the environment. What are the main consequences? And what have been done to struggle against them? Is it possible that the region will be safe to live in again?

People in Japan are living in contaminated land. For example:

The Asahi Shimbun recently described one resident living near 500 tons of stored radioactive waste, measuring at least 8000 becquerels per kilogram of cesium. The same article reported that 12 prefectures are storing 140,843 tons of of contaminated waste. There is no place to store it all. SOURCE: ‘Three Years After: Radioactive waste piles up in Tokyo area with no place to go March 7 2014

Reservoirs in Japan used for agriculture are contaminated. Moreover, Japanese Government declares it is not responsible for decontaminating reservoirs in residential areas not classified as evacuation zones:

Health risk or not? Cesium levels high in hundreds of Fukushima reservoirs. SHINICHI FUJIWARA February 25, 2014
[excerpted] A joint survey by the prefectural government and a branch office of the farm ministry found that the levels exceed 8,000 becquerels per kilogram of soil in 576 reservoirs. In 14 of those cases, the level tops 100,000 becquerels. The central government says that reservoirs, many of which are located in residential areas, are not covered by its decontamination program. The survey covered 1,939 reservoirs, or slightly more than half of the 3,730 in Fukushima Prefecture for agricultural use. Prefectural authorities, fearing that contaminated mud from the reservoirs may reach farmland and create a health hazard for residents, is asking the central government to remove the waste. Contaminated soil exceeding 8,000 becquerels corresponds to designated waste that must be removed at the central government's initiative.…. Of the 14 reservoirs where cesium contamination exceeds 100,000 becquerels, nine are located in evacuation order zones. The remaining five are situated outside those areas. The highest contamination level of 390,000 becquerels was detected in the Ominamisaku reservoir in the town of Futaba ... [end]
Citizens are responsible for clean-up of areas measuring less than 20 millisieverts a year.

The problems with Japan's evacuation and clean-up programs include:

A. The plan does not address hot-spots and re-contamination

B. The plan makes people responsible for their own clean-up in areas designated as producing less than 20 millisieverts a year in exposure.

C. Badges used to measure ‘background’ radiation are replacing more sensitive air monitoring so in fact people are living in even more contaminated areas

D. The plan does not account for ongoing bio-accumulation and bio-magnification.

E. The plan does not look at reproductive implications.

The plan is flawed. The effect is that children are being forced to live in contaminated areas and are experience stress and possible symptoms from radiation exposure:
AP (2013, April 25), Japan court rejects demand to evacuate Fukushima children. The Asahi Shmbun,

The Fukushima Collective Evacuation Trial Team for the Right to Education in a Safe Place,

1 in 4 disaster-hit children needs mental care for problem behavior: study
[Excerpt]…The survey covered 178 children and their parents and guardians who had been enrolled in classes for 3- to 5-year-old children at nursery schools in the three prefectures on March 11, 2011, when the Great East Japan Earthquake and tsunami struck the region, and who agreed to be surveyed. They underwent questionnaires and interviews between September 2012 and June 2013....

...As a result, 25.9 percent of children in Iwate, Miyagi and Fukushima prefectures were diagnosed as being in need of medical care because of reasons including the loss of their friends to the disaster, partial collapse of their homes, witnessing the oncoming tsunami, and separation from their parents. In Mie Prefecture, only 8.5 percent of children -- or one-third the figure in disaster-hit prefectures -- were diagnosed as being in such need of medical care.

Specifically, children in disaster-hit regions suffered from dizziness, nausea, headaches, swearing and reticence, among other symptoms. If left as they were, they are likely to suffer from learning and development disorders, affecting their access to higher education and employment, according to experts....[end]
Children and future generations are at risk from radiation-induced mutations and epigenetic changes. Elements such as uranium are also chemically toxic.

3. What prospects does the region have in its future development? Is there any risk that Fukushima disaster can repeat?

Earthquakes, floods, solar flares and terrorism could produce another Fukushima style situation anywhere nuclear plants are located. Consider radio hacking:
N.S.A. Devises Radio Pathway Into Computers. The New York Times (2014, Jan 15), [excerpted] The National Security Agency has implanted software in nearly 100,000 computers around the world that allows the United States to conduct surveillance on those machines and can also create a digital highway for launching cyberattacks. While most of the software is inserted by gaining access to computer networks, the N.S.A. has increasingly made use of a secret technology that enables it to enter and alter data in computers even if they are not connected to the Internet, according to N.S.A. documents, computer experts and American officials.
 The technology, which the agency has used since at least 2008, relies on a covert channel of radio waves that can be transmitted from tiny circuit boards and USB cards inserted surreptitiously into the computers. In some cases, they are sent to a briefcase-size relay station that intelligence agencies can set up miles away from the target.... [end]
Could terrorists use radio waves to interfere with nuclear facility operations?

Nuclear is the path towards extinction.

The 1956 Bear Report warned of increased mutations and their effects, particularly upon future generations:

Systematic Bias in the First Bear Report

Bear Report

Anders Moller and Timouthy Mousseau on the effects of increased ‘background radiation’ from Chernobyl. They found ‘significant negative effects on immunology, mutation and disease frequency’ across affected animal species, although radiation susceptibilities varied. Moreover, Moller and Mousseau found species decline and mutations in plants and animals in the Chernobyl region amplified across time. They explain in a separate 2013 study that the “long-term effects of mutation accumulation are more important determinants” of population size and variety than short-term effects from radiotoxicity (my italics).

Mikhail Gorbachev noted in his Memoirs that prior to the Chernobyl disaster there had been 151 significant radiation leaks at nuclear power plants around the world. He warned that one or two more accidents would produce contamination far worse than after a nuclear war. Russia and parts of Europe remain contaminated from that disaster, with parts of the Bryansk Region of Russia with median radiation levels of Cesium-137 two orders of magnitude higher than current levels of deposition from nuclear weapons fallout. Chernobyl, Gorbachev wrote, ‘was a bell calling mankind to understand what kind of age we live in. It made people recognize the danger of careless or even criminal negligent attitudes toward the environment.’ Fukushima illustrates that bell call was not heard. How many more bells will ring before humanity has destroyed its eco-system and genome beyond repair?

[i][i]      M. Gorbachev (1995) Memoirs. (London: Doubleday), p. 191.

A. P. Moller and T. A. Mousseau (2006) ‘Biological Consequences of Chernobyl: 20 Years After the Disaster’, Trends. Ecol. Evol., 21, 200-2007.

A. Moller, I. Nishiumi, H. Suzuki, K. Ueda, T. A. Mousseau (2013) ‘Differences in Effects of Radiation of Animals in Fukushima and Chernobyl’, Ecological Indicators, 24, 75-81, p. 80.

A.P. Moller & T. Mousseau (2013) ‘The Effects of Natural Variation in Background Radioactivity on Humans, Animals and Other Organisms’, Biological Reviews, 88.1, 226-254, p. 249


EPA Sets Disturbing Precedent by Walking Away from Contaminated Zone

Introduction to Majia's Blog and Index of Posts Here

October 2013 Interview with James Fetzer about my book, Fukushima and the Privatization of Risk (Palgrave, 2013)

PowerPoint of data examining reports of conditions at the plant and evidence of criticalities, which can be seen here  or here


  1. Two of the designer's ( GE ) engineers walked off the job citing safety concerns. Engineers on the construction project did the same. There is a YouTube video outlining these assessments by one of the engineers.
    There is a great deal of naivity about the morality of nuclear energy. It was a matter of national security and reporting was illegal when I was a boy in the 1950's. If that seems strange, then the era characterized by Dr. Strangelove and nuclear bomb tests ad nauseam also had more secrets'

  2. Quote: "from tiny circuit boards and USB cards inserted surreptitiously into the computers."

    Stupid SmartMeters seem to be a logical way to collect such radio signals.

    BTW, that link sends one to your University's Outlook login, instead of the article.

    20mSv/year eh? That's 20 times the maximum yearly dose for any member of the public by ICRP.

    I remember watching the terrible tsunami live on TV.
    It takes a lot to make a sober grown man cry.
    Watching people swept away to their deaths made me cry.

    Quote: "Fukushima decommissioning falling apart / Fukushima Diary talks"

    I remember the eleventh of March, 2011 and can never forget.

    1. I know what you mean about remembering.

      So many people have described just knowing 3/11 was the beginning of a terrible tumble downward.

      Thanks for the note about the defective link.

  3. Nuke Pro broke the Fukushima story on Zerohedge on March 16th 2011

    That story is here, re-reading it, I was scarily accurate in my guesses of the reality.

    Now Zero hedge does a good 3 year wrap up on the coverup.

  4. 3 years.

    3 years.

    In the past three years, I've learned quite a lot.

    I've learned that this nuclear energy that I thought was cheap and safe, was neither;

    I've learned that not only is it unsafe, that it's so unsafe that the risks have to be hidden from the public. That public discourse on nuclear energy is not only curtailed, it is forbidden.

    I've learned that the Japanese government is willing to sacrifice children rather than admit the truth.

    I've learned that the truth is so outrageous that the government will pass laws and arrest those who tell it.

    I've learned that the US government is a sham. That the pledge of allegiance I said every morning before school for years - no longer means a thing. That our government will not only cover up the truth, that they will harass those who tell it into not telling it. That they will hire folks - lots of them to manage the internet and the media so that the truth is not revealed. That they will send those who defend our freedoms into harms way and then deny medical assistance when they are injured - that they will lie about the radiation that injured them.

    I learned that they convince their minions to do these things, by telling them they are "keeping the peace" - they are "controlling panic". But in reality the minions doing their online dirtywork are merely pawns to the rich and powerful and will be sacrificed when the time comes.

    I learned that the TLA agencies whose charter is to protect the public and others who claim to be raising the flag, are perfectly willing to put the public in harms way to make a buck.

    All sad.

    But what I also learned is that despite all that is wrong in this world - that the truth still exists. It can be seen by a guy sitting at a computer thousands of miles away, and if that guy tells others what he sees, one little corner of the truth might prevail.

    The other night I found myself downtown walking at night among these Japanese Cherry blossom trees to a great stone statue of a man who stood up for what he believed and changed the future. Behind it was a statue of the President who guided the country through the great civil war. I walked further and came upon a statue of a President who helped us through the great depression and an even more destructive World War and then I complete the journey at the foot of a statue of the man who wrote the Declaration of Independence - a document that forced its signers to commit to its ideals, or die trying...

    I believe the truth will prevail. It has sometimes been an immense struggle in the past to force it, and it is again now - but it is a struggle that must be won.


  5. I have followed this blow sine shortly after the disaster and have All was found it on the spot and never extravigant, I Thankyou Majia for that.
    I conducted a respectful vigil outside the Japanese Consulate in Auckland New Zealand on the 11/3 and presented the attached letter to the japanese Prime Minister. Whilst standing outside Respectfully and handing out copies of the letter we were approached by two Japanese Women and one from Korea who Cried when speaking to us. This brought home the stark pain, suffering and stress that Millions of people in this part of the world are suffering.
    Majia, I thank you from the bottom of my Kiwi Heart.

    1. I'm sure your presence meant much for those women at the embassy


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