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Fukushima Update: Tepco Admits Fukushima Radiation Leaking Into Ocean For 3 Months

Tokyo Electric Power Company admitted for the first time on Monday that radioactive water from the Fukushima Nuclear Plant has been leaking (pouring) into the Pacific Ocean for the past 3 months.
Highly contaminated water (more than 2.3 billion becquerels per liter) was found in a trench near one of the reactors. Radiation levels this high have not been seen since the initial disaster happened. Tepco is searching for the source of the contaminated water and is trying to stop the leaking into the ocean.

In other recent Fukushima news:

A couple weeks ago Cesium levels jumped 100 times higher in groundwater.
Kevin Kamps, Radioactive Waste Watchdog at Beyond Nuclear: Well, the best I can come up with for what's happening in recent days and weeks at Fukushima Daiichi is hemorrhaging of radioactivity.
And the scariest part of all is that they don't know where it's coming from.
But ultimately it's coming from 3 melted down atomic reactor cores and severely damaged, if not entirely destroyed, radiological containment structures. That's where it's ultimately coming from. But why it's getting out now in such a hurry all of a sudden is the big mystery.


Steam Raises Concern At Japanese Nuclear Plant [...] The steam was first seen at the unit 3 reactor late last week, and it's continued on-and-off ever since. [...] many were startled by the fresh video. They had reason for concern: [...] Some fuel could have shifted and created an unexpected hot spot, or worse restarted nuclear reactions. But both scenarios appear unlikely.

Good to see it discussed 28.Jul.2013 08:56


Anyone who has been following this situation and anyone who hasn't should know that water has been 'leaking' into the ocean from the beginning. It is also 'leaking' radioactivity into the air unabated from that time. Despite the building of a virtual steel tank farm and buildings covered, lined ponds (which also leaked) the collection of water has been next to impossible. There is no integrity to 4 primary containments nor the buildings, while the inspections we may have been informed of have been very limited. I saw a figure of 400 tons of water a day being used, and I did a little the math for some personal aid in imagination (correct the math if I'm wrong; these are just what I pulled from my head)...

400*2000/8.2=97561 gallons (rounded to whole)
1 gallon is 231 in3
97561*231=22536591 in3
22536591/1728=13042 ft3
13042= approximately a 23.5 cube each and every day for 2 years and 4 months.

So, basically each day they would have to build a small house to fill with variously contaminated water each day. Treatment has been, if not an outright failure, an ongoing problem whose solution isn't close. The numbers above don't account for evaporation, that steam is vented to the atmosphere. Though the evaporation may shrink that cube somewhat, it lessens the amount of water that can be collected and managed. Tepco also has only somewhat reliable numbers regarding the natural groundwater moving through the site. While they might try, contolling that natural process is huge and likely years away. Personally, I would imagine that published number (400 tons) that they can be somewhat sure of in light of the groundwater may be misleading in regard to actual water uncontained and leaking to the sea. There hasn't been a day that contaminated water hasn't entered the ocean.

Though they may have built a cover over Unit 1 (removed to try to begin work), and the Unit 2 building has some integrity atmospherically, both Unit 1 and Unit 2 for quite a period have been flooded these with nitrogen to displace oxygen to avoid the risk of further expolsions. In general at a normal operating plant, the idea is to have the pressure in the building negative so that air comes in on a constant basis and somehow scrub (maybe) the outgoing atmosphere to vent through stacks. In the process of flooding with nitrogen, that situation must be reversed, as negative atmosphere implies the presence of oxygen. Unit 3 has been uncovered all this time, and while I'm not sure about atmospheric integrity of what they've built over Unit 4, it's situation with its spent fuel pool filled with a reactor core (because it was in maintenence shutdown; the core moved to the pool for the maintenence of the reactor pressure vessel) emissions may have been as bad as Unit 3 despite its less spectacular explosion and it was totally uncovered until recently. One has to ask, too, just how they were (or are) recovering leaking water from Unit 4's pool. To me, even if in my most optimistic moments I might think that what's being done is the best with the situation, it's like using a jagged rock for a pillow. It's not comfortable but for brief moments at a time.

The measuring of release of isotopes is, at best, questionable; have been manipulated and admittedly minimized to what one might think one can get away in light of knowledgable people willing to open their mouths in some honesty. There have been times, even recently, when short-lived isotopes have been observed pointing to minor ongoing criticalities. And don't forget the constant release of tritrium, something these abominations do as a matter of process even with containment and integrity. Most meaurements are for cesium, which it seems from what I've read to be easily measured, and from that and knowledge of the process, the presence and amounts of other isotopes such as strontium are implied. In my personal opinion, it ain't going to stop and won't be stopped. It's something we're going to have to live with for quite a while in some manner. There seems greatly diverse opinions of both time and manner even among the knowledgable. The statistics have us numbed, the wonders have us dazzled. As for nuclear, the technology promised or assumed hasn't materialized, especially in regard to mitigation of its output. If we're not going to discuss it for whatever reason, even if we haven't knowledge unique to nuclear or this 'accident', its impact isn't unique to the quality and its consequences to all life.

On a personal note, sometimes I'm amazed, in some situations how I can look through the obvious as if it were a pane of glass, and that's usually after that obvious has made itself uncomfortably known. But when I can't accept failure, can't accept that my personal model needs some measure of compromise if not outright rejection, I know I'll really open myself to what may be the worst kind of death. We all die and it's never in complete control of how that comes about (except for maybe suicide). Isn't the trick to it all attempting to make it comfortable or being at peace with personal choices as possible? With nuclear, I can't possibly find a smooth rock for that pillow. Using my shirt on that rock just leaves me cold.