390 Coming to your backyard and mine (spreading, er, sharing, the pain)

A follow-up to an earlier post about 1,000 balloons being let go from Suishohama in Fukui Prefecture. They followed the balloons to track how far they would go and how long it would take…. Well, an update today from Greenpeace says that they have found some of the balloons as far away as Saitama and Tsushima (Shizuoka). Wouldn’t take long for radioactive isotopes from an accident at the Oi reactor in Fukui to reach most of the middle part of Japan.

Balloon map: the red balloons were released on 29 March and the green balloons were released on 30 March. 

Source

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For folks in Aichi Prefecture, a bit of “#$%& news:

Disaster Debris Wide-Area Disposal: Toyota Eager to Help at Its Factory Site in Aichi Prefecture on a Landfill

Toyota’s Tahara Factory in Tahara City, Aichi Prefecture makes Lexus. The factory is on a landfill on Mikawa Bay, and the company says there is a plenty of space for Tohoku disaster debris.

Mainichi Shinbun (4/5/2012) reports:

震災で発生したがれき処理で、トヨタ自動車が愛知県から打診されていた同社田原工場(同県田原市)敷地内での最終処分場建設を受け入れる方向で検討に入ったことが5日、明らかになった。周辺住民や工場従業員への影響を調査し、周辺住民や自治体の同意が得られれば、県と具体的な協議に入る方針。

It has been revealed that Toyota has started the internal discussion to agree to the request from the Aichi prefectural government to build a final disposal site on its factory compound in Tahara City. The company will study the effect on the nearby residents and the factory workers, and once the consent from the residents and the local municipality (Tahara City) is obtained Toyota will start discussing the details with the Aichi prefectural government.

トヨタは「正式な要請があれば、前向きに検討する」とコメントしている。

Toyota says, “If there is a formal request, we will be glad to consider.”

田原工場は埋め立て地に立地。敷地面積約370万平方メートルと、東京ドーム約80個分の広さがあり、高級車「レクサス」などを生産している。トヨタは東北を小型車の生産拠点と位置づけており、復興を支援する意味でも「可能なことは協力したい」としている。

Toyota’s Tahara Factory is located on the landfill. It is about 3.7 million square meters, or about 80 Tokyo Domes. The factory assembles cars including its luxury car “Lexus”. For Toyota, the Tohoku region is the manufacturing base for its small, compact cars. The company says, “We would like to help as much as possible”, to support the recovery of Tohoku.

According to Chunichi Shinbun(4/5/2012) which has been very gun-ho about disaster debris incineration, the governor of Aichi, Hideaki Omura (see photo), has decided to spend 600 million yen to plan for the incineration plant, temporary storage and a final disposal site, without deliberation in or approval from the Assembly. The prefectural government will use a special procedure called “Senketsu” – acting on its own.
Chunichi indicates that Toyota’s factory will have the final disposal site where the ashes will be buried, and Chubu Electric’s thermal power plant will get to burn the debris. Aichi Prefecture want to burn 1 million tonnes of disaster debris to help the recovery.

The Ministry of the Environment will reimburse the cost for new facilities that will process disaster debris from Tohoku.

Governor Omura is another Tokyo University graduate (law) and a former bureaucrat at the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries before he turned to politics.

Toyota’s Tahara Factory location:


大きな地図で見る
I guess Toyota and the Japanese government are counting on the WTO if global “baseless rumors” hurt Toyota’s sales.

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Strontium at Fukushima plant flows into sea

http://www3.nhk.or.jp/daily/english/20120405_13.html

Tokyo Electric Power Company says more radioactive wastewater has leaked from its Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant and flowed into the sea. The water contained high levels of strontium.

Workers at the plant discovered water leaking from a pipe connected to a wastewater tank, at around 2:00 AM on Thursday.

Workers shut valves, and the flow stopped about half an hour later.

TEPCO says about 12 tons of wastewater leaked from a disconnected joint in the pipe. The company also says it believes that a large portion of the water has flowed into the ocean through a nearby drainage ditch.

The utility is trying to determine how the joint became disconnected, and how much water poured into the sea.

Radioactive wastewater also leaked on March 26th from a different section of the same piping.

Last December, water leaked from another device within the plant compound.

Thursday, April 05, 2012 12:34 +0900 (JST)

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Radiation expert takes on red tape in disaster zone

Kyodo

Shinzo Kimura, a radiation hygiene expert combating the nuclear contamination in Fukushima, is a man of action who stops at nothing to accomplish his mission.

After watching news footage of the nuclear disaster following the Great East Japan Earthquake on March 11, 2011, Kimura, 44, immediately geared up to go to the accident site.

But his boss at the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health refused to give the green light for his trip to Fukushima, so Kimura quit his job at the government-affiliated institute and scrambled to the disaster area under his own steam.

Kimura says he had no qualms about losing his job.

“I feared that the government could withhold data, deliberately or otherwise. My mission is revealing facts,” he explained.

Article continues at:

http://www.japantimes.co.jp/text/nn20120405f2.html 

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Goshi Hosono’s Incomprehensible Remark About Radioactivity of Disaster Debris

This philandering minister is in charge of the Fukushima nuclear accident and in charge of decontamination and disaster debris spreading.

From his April 3 press conference, by the reporter named Suwa and appeared in the blog by Ryusaku Tanaka, independent journalist:

諏訪:セシウム134と137だけの測定で大丈夫と大臣はお考えだそうだが、なぜか?

細野:セシウム134、137で測れるのは、これまでさまざまな測定をしてきたなかで、セシウムで測れば、それ以外の核種は、それよりも非常に、いわゆるその放射性物質においても、ベクレルにおいても、放射能というレベルにおいて懸念はない。

Suwa: You believe measuring cesium-134 and cesium-137 is enough. Why?

Hosono: What can be measured by measuring cesium-134 and cesium-137, of all the measurements we have done so far, if we measure using cesium, then the rest of the nuclides, more than that to a great degree, in so-called radioactive materials, or in becquerels, on the level of radioactivity, there is no concern.

Did you get it?

Hosono did his utmost best by using all the words he had heard, clearly without understanding any of them, since March 11, 2011 – cesium, nuclide, radioactive materials, becquerels, radioactivity. He could have spared the embarrassment by simply saying “I don’t know.”

He is one of those politicians in their early 40s whom the mass media want to portray as the next prime minister, although he is being eclipsed these days by the mayor of Osaka who behaves like a kindergarten bully in a sand box. A great future either way for Japan and the Japanese.

A fish rots from the head down.

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Fukushima I Nuke Plant: Tritium Detected for the First Time in Deep Well

From the 6PM press conference by TEPCO on April 4, 2012 (archived on TEPCO’s website):

  • 1.6 x 10^0 becquerels/cubic centimeter of tritium was detected for the first time in the water of the deep well.
  • The level is about the same as that of tritium being detected in the subdrain pits.
  • The well is located at about 500 meters west of the reactors, elevation 30 meters from the sea level, and 20 meters higher than the reactor buildings.
  • Groundwater flows from west to east, so it is unlikely that tritium was from the contaminated water in the reactor/turbine buildings.

I haven’t found the data from TEPCO on their site yet, though Matsumoto said it had been published.

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Local official measures alpha radiation on bridge railing — Up to 1,000 times more dangerous than beta or gamma (VIDEO)

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Gov’t agency sought to raise Fukushima radiation exposure limit to 350 millisieverts

“(mainichi Japan) April 05, 2012”

The government’s Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency (NISA) demanded the health ministry raise the allowable radiation exposure limit to 350 millisieverts effectively for emergency workers trying to bring the crippled Fukushima nuclear power station under control shortly after the ministry lifted the legal exposure limit to 250 millisieverts from 100 millisieverts on March 14, 2011, it has been learned.

NISA demanded the change to the radiation exposure limit after receiving a request from Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO), the operator of the troubled Fukushima No. 1 Nuclear Power Plant, according to NISA’s internal documents disclosed after an organization specializing in issues of radiation exposure requested the materials through information disclosure laws. The internal documents disclosed are NISA’s internal memos and solicitation documents TEPCO, Toshiba Corp. and Hitachi-GE Nuclear Energy, Ltd. sent to NISA.

It was already known that then Prime Minister Naoto Kan talked about the possibility of raising the exposure limit to 500 millisieverts at the Prime Minister’s Office three days after it was raised to 250 millisieverts. But it is the first time that specific exchanges between the government ministries and agencies concerned have been revealed through internal documents.

Article continues at:

http://mainichi.jp/english/english/newsselect/news/20120405p2a00m0na019000c.html

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