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Environmental groups sue Washington over nuclear plant’s effect on Columbia River via The Oregonian

SPOKANE — Three environmental groups are suing a state agency over the impacts of the Northwest’s only commercial nuclear power plant on the water quality of the Columbia River.

Northwest Environmental Defense Center, Northwest Environmental Advocates, and Columbia Riverkeeper will file the lawsuit Thursday in Thurston County Superior Court against the Washington Energy Facility Site Evaluation Council.

The council in 2006 issued the water pollution permit for Energy Northwest‘s Columbia Generating Station, which is located on the Hanford Nuclear Reservation. The station uses 20 million gallons of water from the river every day to cool the nuclear reactor.


“Experts from the National Marine Fisheries Service sounded the alarm about how this facility may be killing and harming endangered salmon,” said Mala Nelson, attorney for the Northwest Environmental Defense Center. “EFSEC’s blatant disregard for this input demands judicial oversight.”


“This nuclear reactor is one of many sources of toxic chemicals that are contaminating the fish and wildlife of the Columbia River, including heavy metals from Hanford operations,” said Nina Bell, executive director of Northwest Environmental Advocates.

“State and federal agencies give a lot of lip service to protecting Columbia River water quality and species but when it comes to actually restricting the polluters, these same agencies are nowhere to be found,” Bell said.

The portion of the Columbia River that flows past the reactor contains some of the most productive salmon spawning areas in the Northwest, including the largest remaining stock of wild fall Chinook salmon in the Columbia River, the environmental groups said.

“People regularly eat salmon and other fish caught just offshore and downstream of Energy Northwest’s facility,” said Dan Serres of Columbia Riverkeeper.

Read more at Environmental groups sue Washington over nuclear plant’s effect on Columbia River

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Tepco cracks open weather shield covering reactor building at Fukushima No. 1 via The Japan Times

Tepco on Friday cracked open the cover over the reactor 1 building at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant.

The covering was installed in a bid to contain radioactive dust after a hydrogen explosion shattered the building’s exterior structure in March 2011.

Dismantling it is a first step toward removing spent fuel rods stored in a cooling pool above the reactor. That, in turn, must be completed before the reactor core can be opened to remove the melted-down fuel, according to Tokyo Electric Power Co.

On Friday morning, plant workers used a crane to remove a huge panel to see whether anti-dispersal agents are taking effect. They were inserted last week to reduce the risk of radioactive dust blowing out.

No changes in radiation levels have been observed around the plant so far, the company said.

Continue reading at Tepco cracks open weather shield covering reactor building at Fukushima No. 1

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3年ぶりに見えた爆発の跡 福島第一1号機のカバー外す via 朝日新聞




全文は3年ぶりに見えた爆発の跡 福島第一1号機のカバー外す

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Learning the tragic lesson of Fukushima: No nuclear restart at Sendai via GreenPeace


Decontamination efforts at Fukushima, which began in 2012, have proved massively expensive and hugely intensive. Thousands of workers have invested tens of thousands of hours removing soil and cleaning houses, unfortunately with very limited success.

One result of the decontamination effort is clearly visible. Immense quantities of radioactive waste have been generated, and it keeps on multiplying. Along the roads, piles of large black bags. each holding around a cubic metre of radioactive waste, await transport to larger temporary storage sites.

We visited one of these sites in Kawauchi. In the breathtakingly beautiful setting of forests and mountains our first sight was of an immense area filled with bag upon bag of radioactive waste. At just this one site no less than 200,000 of these cubic-metre bags lie covered by green tarpaulins.

Around Fukushima there are thousands of similar nuclear waste storage sites.

The supposed ‘decontamination’ has succeeded only in relocating the radioactive contamination. It’s a huge problem without any real, safe solution.

Even these large-scale efforts are proving inadequate in lowering radiation exposure levels to government targets. As evacuation orders are lifted, people are moving back into areas that are still dangerously contaminated. Many residents are effectively being forced to return home, because within a year of the order to return they risk losing their already meagre compensation. Those living in contaminated areas face a terrible dilemma.


In Kawauchi, another area where the evacuation order was lifted only a few weeks ago, 59% of our radiation measurements were over the target level and, again, we measured higher levels away from the roads.

Many of those who can afford to are staying away. Like Mrs. Watanabe who will never return to her beautiful home and mountain orchard that have been heavily contaminated by the Fukushima disaster. They are lost to her forever. She would rather live in relative safety in a tiny flat, and bear the heavy cost of building a new house elsewhere, than put her health at risk by returning to her mountain home and the land that she once so cherished.


We also returned to the village of Iitate. We’d taken measurements back in 2011, ten days after the start of the disaster, when citizens had not yet been evacuated. It was still heavily contaminated, having suffered the full extent of the explosions at Fukushima with no shelter from any surrounding mountains that could have blocked some of the radioactive fallout.

The first thing that struck me on returning to Iitate was the heavy traffic – only this time the cars were mostly full of decontamination workers, and the trucks were filled with radioactive waste. Hundreds of workers were labouring intensively in a vain attempt at decontamination. At a rough guess, I would say that over 1,000 workers are engaged in trying to decontaminate this one place.

It appears to be a political operation, one designed to give the impression that even after a nuclear disaster the problem is “manageable”. Radiation levels in Iitate show no prospect of falling to what is deemed acceptable. At no less than 96% of the locations we monitored radiation levels that exceeded the government’s target level.

This is the overwhelming and unsolvable nature of a nuclear crisis. When a major nuclear disaster occurs, the damage is long-lived, pervasive, and impossible to rectify. It generates enormous amounts of waste for which there is no safe storage. It literally destroys entire communities and people’s way of life.

Fukushima’s citizens are having to live with the gross injustice of having lost everything to a nuclear disaster for which they were in no way responsible. Now they are being stripped of the meagre and inadequate support they received as they are effectively forced back into radioactively contaminated areas.

Read more at Learning the tragic lesson of Fukushima: No nuclear restart at Sendai

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米地裁:東電の主張認めず 震災支援の兵士訴訟継続 via 毎日新聞

東日本大震災の被災地支援で三陸沖に派遣された米原子力空母の乗組員らが、東京電力福島第1原発事故で被ばくしたとして東電に損害賠償を求めた訴訟 で、カリフォルニア州サンディエゴの連邦地裁は30日までに、訴えを退けるよう求めた東電の主張を認めず、訴訟を継続する判断を示した。


続きは 米地裁:東電の主張認めず 震災支援の兵士訴訟継続


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「脱原発は十分可能」石巻で小泉劇場 via 河北新報







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中間貯蔵施設の環境影響調査 環境省、福島県に免除申請 via 朝日新聞




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Judge: Sailors’ class-action suit can proceed over alleged radiation exposure via The Stars and Stripes

A U.S. federal judge has ruled that a class-action lawsuit filed by about 200 Navy sailors and Marines can proceed against Japanese utility TEPCO and other defendants who they blame for a variety of ailments from radiation exposure following a nuclear reactor meltdown 3½ years ago.

In a decision released Tuesday, Southern District of California Judge Janis Sammartino ruled that the suit can be amended to add the builders of the Fukushima-Daichi Nuclear Power Plant reactors — General Electric, EBASCO, Toshiba and Hitachi — as defendants.
“It is not over, but we have won the major battle,” lawyer Charles Bonner wrote in an email to his clients that was provided to Stars and Stripes.

“THANK GOD!!!!!” responded Lindsay Cooper, the first USS Ronald Reagan sailor to come forward and report an illness.

Sammartino’s ruling was a bit of a surprise. The Defense Department, including Assistant Secretary of Defense for Health Affairs Dr. Jonathan Woodson, have concluded that the illnesses are not a result of the servicemembers’ work in Operation Tomodachi, in which a massive earthquake on March 11, 2011, spawned a tsunami that swamped the nuclear plant.

The suit was first filed in 2012 by a small group of sailors off the USS Ronald Reagan, who alleged that TEPCO’s misinformation coaxed U.S. forces closer to the affected areas and made them sick. More ailing servicemembers came forward citing exposure-related ailments such as unexplained cancers, excessive bleeding and thyroid issues.

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Herald Sun Galleries: Inside Japan’s nuclear wasteland via Herald Sun

see 29 photos at  Herald Sun Galleries: Inside Japan’s nuclear wasteland

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フクシマの原発事故は収束していない via JB Press


フクシマ関連のアメリカ取材の報告を続ける。今回は首都ワシントンにある核問題(原子力発電所、核兵器、放射 性廃棄物など)のシンクタンク“Institute for Environment and Energy Research”(環境とエネルギー調査研究所=IEER)代表のアージャン・マキジャニ博士のインタビューをお届けする 。




アージャン・マキジャニ博士(以下、敬称略) TMIとフクシマはまったく別のケースとして考えた方が良いで しょう。TMIは放出された放射性物質のほとんどがキセノン、クリプトンなど希ガスでした。ヨウ素131の放出もありましたが、少量でした。キセノンやク リプトンの放出量は大量でしたが、直接的な人体の健康へ影響は、ヨウ素やセシウム、ストロンチウムと比較すると小さいのです。人体に到達する前に大気に霧 散してしまうのと、入っても体内にとどまらず、排出されてしまうからです。そんなわけで、TMI事故では、放射性物質の放出も、個人の被曝量も非常に小さ かった。だから地表の除染も必要なかったのです。フクシマでは、非常に高濃度に汚染された地域があります。自然放射線量の数十倍、数百倍の濃度の汚染が検 出された学校すらあります。TMIではこんなことはなかった。




マキジャニ 汚染という点ではTMIよりずっとチェルノブイリに近いと思います。その点ではTMIとは比較にな りません。しかし、チェルノブイリよりひどい面もある。チェルノブイリでは汚染地帯は放棄され、その後は農業や漁業には使われていません。しかし日本は土 地が豊富ではない。土地が汚染で破壊されてしまうと、問題が非常に大きくなる。また、太平洋が汚染されたため、人々は魚類の汚染を恐れている。その結果、 漁業が破壊された。消費者の買い物の行動パターンが変わった。放射能汚染は客観的なデータの問題としてだけでなく、人々の主観の問題になったのです。こう したまったく別種の損害をもたらした点でも、フクシマはTMIとは違います。


マキジャニ 他にも、単なる数字の比較だけでは分からない違いもあります。まず1点目。フクシマの1号機では、 燃料棒が溶けて、圧力容器や格納容器を破壊しただけでなく、コンクリートの基礎部分も突き抜けている可能性すらある。完全なメルトスルーです。また、今は 汚染水が地下水に混入し、ストロンチウム90の汚染が起きています。ストロンチウム90はセシウムよりはるかに危険です。より長く体内に残留し、異常を起 こすからです。


マキジャニ フクシマの事故は3年経ってもまだ進行が終わっていません。チェルノブイリでは、放射性物質の環境 への放出は数週間で止まっています。止まってから除染の問題が始まった。そして現場は実際には放射性廃棄物捨て場になった。廃棄物をどうするかという問題 はそこから始まった。


私が専門家として証言をして関わった訴訟の例を挙げましょう。1985年、オハイオ州にあった核弾頭のウラン材料工場の近隣住民が健康被害の賠償を求め て訴訟を起こした。89年に連邦政府が7800万ドルを支払うことで和解が成立しました。このケースでも、公衆の被曝量はフクシマよりずっと低かったので す。



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