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to want to get a fresh discussion going about Fukushima in light of what has emerged this week?

(16 Posts)
doubledish Thu 19-May-11 01:23:41

I have searched around for an ongoing discussion here, or signs of discussion, about the confirmation of meltdowns at Fukushima this week, but found nothing later than March, when it was classed as a level 4 (now 7) emergency (as per Chernobyl) every 'expert' and newsreader was largely regurgitating the PR of TEPCO and the authorties, and those of us who saw deeper concerns were generally dismissed.

This week saw admissions from TEPCO that at least one of their six reactor units at Fukushima Daichii had suffered a meltdown, possibly three units, way back in March (14-17), the period when four units experienced dramatic explosions. The Japanese government says they relied on reading websites (i.e. including blogs) to find out what was happening in the first weeks.

Careful analysis of data and pictures by independent experts, whistleblowers and amateurs established within those first two weeks hypotheses supporting the current reality of this crisis, but are only now beginning to find this evidence they expected from TEPCO, IAEA, NISA, NRC etc...one suspects there are more admissions and revelations to come.

In the weeks between those meltdowns/explosions, and now, despite signs (and data) that the fallout (air, land, sea) from the incidents was indeed serious and finding it's way across the Pacific, Northern Americas, and Atlantic, the vast majority of info on air monitoring was restructured (e.g. EPA went to a three month rather than daily reporting), and throughout, despite evidence that Plutonium* and Uranium were confirmed components of at least one of the explosive events, (*even began registering in Hawaii), nearly all PR/data about fallout omits mention of those more 'difficult' and hazardous radioactive substances, and now report shutdowns.

The previous discussions here said don't worry, it's a 4 not a 7, it's not a Chernobyl, there haven't been fires/explosions, the pumps all restarted, the cooling all restarted, it's too far away, the radioactive/harmful isotopes emitted have short half-lives, there haven't/won't be criticalities....that has now all been established as incorrect. There's more, but let's get on.

So given what's being revealed (and how), doesn't anybody else feel it may be worth discussing where you want your school's fish to come from, your green tea, your Californian tomatoes or pacific tuna? What of foods that omit place of origin on their packaging (e.g. some frozen or processed foods)?

Whether we ought to pressure our governments for more honest and prompt admissions and reactions. Pressure on Japanese government over things like how they decided they'd change the acceptable level of radiation for infants to those of nuclear reactor employees, despite the differences in cell regeneration rates etc...Connotations for domestic nuclear safety, preventing another one, etc?

You guys are powerful, you can do something.

FurKnickersAndNoCoat Thu 19-May-11 01:37:30

I can't possibly answer any of those questions you clearly have a higher level of education and/or intellect than I do. I just think that Japan have a history of tending to keep things very secret and unless it was a literal exploding tuna/exploding sushi bars situation then we wouldn't know about it until it was too late. The entire world situation is vile at the moment and it is becoming worse day by day and if we knew everything then I dont think we could carry out our day to day lives without fear of nuclear attack/asteroid impact/terrorism/global warning. However our government and many others do the same things. <awaiting a more intelligent person to respond>

VforViennetta Thu 19-May-11 02:36:25

I will respond, however I'm not more intelligent grin.

Doubledish, have you by any chance been following a very long (800+ page) thread on another site?

I think it's shameful how the whole fukishima thing has been handled, it was fairly obvious from early on that it was more serious than portrayed in the media.

If Tepco have finally admitted that meltdowns have occurred, god knows how bad it really is.

Good luck with getting any kind of campaign off the ground, I think the majority of people readily accept the mushroom treatment, if it's not constantly on the ticker it doesn't matter. The whole Japan earthquake thing almost disappeared from twitter within about 3 days.

TanteRose Thu 19-May-11 02:42:01

I am in Japan, and yes, the info coming out seems to be that the situation was much more serious immediately after the quake...meltdown occured in one if not more of the reactors.

However, it is, and was never going to be another Chernobyl - when the meltdown/explosions/radiation were completely out of control.
There have been leaks and contaminated water has been dumped in the ocean, its true - but Japan has been constantly monitoring the situation and food/water checks are ongoing and thorough.

Japan is now reconsidering its nuclear industry (already it has shut down a huge reactor which is on a major seismic fault line)

Radiation levels in the area and across Japan are checked continuously - of course, many other countries are involved with checks and monitoring.

The bottom line is that the situation is not ideal, but it is under control (just!)

When you say "you guys are powerful, you can do something", do you mean Mumsnet?? sorry, but confused & grin

VforViennetta Thu 19-May-11 02:49:21

I think describing the situation as a "leak" is a bit optimistic there TanteRose, a leak to me suggests a small opening in a fully functioning reactor, rather than 1-3 melted down cores fully exposed to the air. Fair enough the explosions were not nuclear, but Chernobyl was dealt with fairly quickly, this has no end in sight.

ohmyfucksy Thu 19-May-11 02:57:20

Weell, I guess we'll never know unless someone powerful wants to tell us. There are lots of things we're not allowed to know and never will. Speculation is pointless.

RitaBix Thu 19-May-11 05:10:05

We will know how bad it is in a few years time when all the side efects of radiation sickness and birth defects come to light

It certainly is bigger than they let on

sephrenia Thu 19-May-11 06:29:53

Although it's a conspiracy website, they do have a dedicated forum for all discussion pertaining to the Fukushima disaster and it's well worth sifting through the 'aliens made the reactors melt' kind of posts in order to get to the really intelligent discussions.

Just Google 'Above Top Secret' and take a look at the forums if you haven't already smile

HowToLookGoodGlaikit Thu 19-May-11 07:39:20

I have been following the ATS thread since the very beginning. Some very knowledgable people on there.

sephrenia Thu 19-May-11 07:42:50

Same here. It's almost scary how quickly they can get the information together and posted up in a coherent form. I've certainly learnt about nuclear power stations since this started.

sephrenia Thu 19-May-11 07:43:54

That should read: learnt *a lot about nuclear power stations hmm

MoreBeta Thu 19-May-11 07:54:11

Japanese GDP figure were released this morning. Their economy is in freefall, this summer there wil be rolling blackouts and Japan simply cannot afford to switch off any more of its nuclear power plants. New fossil fuel plants cannot be built quickly enough. It is affecting supply chains for car parts and electronics components across the world already. Factories are running out of parts in the USA and Europe because the factories in Japan that make the components cannot operate. This is now affecting the global economy as well as the health of local people.

I really think a proper international monitoring team needs to be sent in to report on the true level of radiation and execute a plan for containing it. Problem is that Governemnt around the world are hamstrung. So many of them have nuclear plants themselves the question has ot be asked - can the world economy afford to shut down nuclear plants?

Simple answer is no.

VforViennetta Fri 20-May-11 02:15:17

I do agree MoreBeta. Love Ats, I read in probably equal proportions to Mumsnet. There are obviously a lot of loons, but you learn to filter those out, as you do on Mn wink.

I have learnt a lot on that website, there are a lot of intelligent people collating important data, looking beyond the mainstream media.

Was the same with the gulf oil disaster.

It is discarded by most as a mad conspiracy site, but by god there are some great threads on there.

tooworried Fri 20-May-11 02:29:04

I agree with the OP. Most people seem to have forgotten the issue as guff like Arnie Schwartz. takes over the news. I think it is terrifying.

PS Please tell me what the Ats website is...it sounds interesting.

alistron1 Fri 20-May-11 06:29:45

AboveTopSecret, it's nearly as good as Godlikeproductions grin

Bellapig Fri 27-May-11 17:44:56

The US EPA shut down its monitoring/info system just as things were getting serious and cesium and plutonium were detected in the US. After that, one site after another around the world has stopped reporting any monitoring results to the public. In the UK the next public results will be released in July!! we are the world's mushrooms to be sure. NB what we need is not just gamma ray levels but levels of radionuclides, esp iodine and cesium, to tell us how much radiation is still being released, and how many of the long-lived nasties are building up in soil, water, and even air. I have found only very few sites still providing info: this German one has useful graphs for iodine and cesium...
http://www.bfs.de/de/ion/imis/spurenmessungen.html
and this one at UC Berkeley is great and they treat the public like adults:
http://www.nuc.berkeley.edu/UCBAirSampling
you will see from the German graphs that basically we are getting the same radiation in different countries around the northern hemisphere so you can tell a lot about Europe levels from the Berkeley site.
Irish site here: http://www.rpii.ie/Emergencies/Nuclear-accident-in-Japan.aspx but they don't update very often--bit suspicious really.
Hope mumsnet doesn't ask Sense About Science to provide a reassuring 'expert' again on this topic--they have funders with nuke interests and we cannot rely on anyone they provide to tell us the truth.

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