The desperate attempts to contain the fallout from the shattered atomic Fukushima Daiichi plant have failed, meaning the threat will continue to grow. The recurring close calls reveal the ongoing vulnerabilities of the Fukushima and associated sites. The government has given no clear explanation why and how much tax money will be spent to cover the total accident costs. But transparency means that the utilities and the government need to disclose information that the public needs, even when it is not favorable to them. The problems that were revealed at the time of the accident at the Fukushima-1 nuclear power plant on March 11, 2011, were clear long before it. Photo credit Ricardo Herrgott for Global 2000. What’s Going on in Fukushima Today?Is Fukushima the greatest environmental disaster of all time? World History 'Grief tourism' grows in popularity, with D-Day anniversary. LIFE BEFORE THE CATASTROPHE PART 2. But this wasn’t the first time an incident like this has happened. Does anyone really think that the nuclear industry in the USA would handle this kind of disaster any better, or any differently? One solution, which they have so far been unwilling to accept, would be to establish a truly independent third party to oversee their activities. Throughout the world, the name Fukushima has become synonymous with nuclear disaster and running for the hills. In September 2015, several hundred bags were swept downstream during flooding caused by tropical storm Etau. But as an independent, nonprofit media organization, our operations depend on the support of readers like you. The court decision was totally unsatisfactory to the public, especially for the victims in Fukushima who were forced to leave their homes. Most recently, the super typhoon Hagibis hit the eastern part of Japan, which includes Fukushima prefecture and the area affected by the nuclear accident. Originally, the operation was supposed to start in March 2019, but TEPCO deployed an operation tower that was about three meters too short for the task, meaning it needed to rebuild the tower before starting. A total of 1,028 people were interviewed, of which only 14% expressed their approval. Read more: Nuclear Waste an Ongoing Storage Concern, EcoNews – Feb/Mar 2012. Help us continue to deliver quality journalism that holds leaders accountable. Here is the RT interview with the journalist Harvey Wasserman about what’s truly been going on…--> Join us on Telegram: Be sure you get our most important and latest content by joining our free Telegram … Fukushima Daiichi: World’s Worst Nuclear Crisis Since Chernobyl, EcoNews – Jun/Jul 2011 The mental toll … Americas. Eight years on, … Fukushima today. It is looking increasingly likely that Japan will be dumping contaminated Fukushima water into the ocean. Just a couple of months ago, the facility’s operator, TEPCO, announced that contamination levels have spiked up to 70 times over regular readings. The epicenter of the earthquake was 130 kilometers (80 miles) east of Sendai, the northeastern part of Japan. It will put much of what is happening in perspective. 100 thousand people were forced to … Fukushima accident, also called Fukushima nuclear accident or Fukushima Daiichi nuclear accident, accident in 2011 at the Fukushima Daiichi (“Number One”) plant in northern Japan, the second worst nuclear accident in the history of nuclear power generation. This was in an interview with RIA Novosti, timed to coincide with the fourth anniversary of the accident, said Leonid Bolshov, director of the Institute for Safe Development of Nuclear Energy (IBRAE) of the Russian Academy of Sciences, corresponding member of the Russian Academy of Sciences. Part 1, PRIPYAT AND THE INHABITANTS. On 21 October 2020, Japan provided the IAEA with a copy of a report on the discharge record and the seawater monitoring results at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station during September, which the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has sent to all international Missions in Japan. The number of people dissatisfied with the work to eliminate the accident, all these years remains approximately the same – between 70 and 80 percent. Tepco used underwater robots that finally found the … After more than eight years, Japan is still struggling with aftermath of the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster. A month before the anniversary of the triple disaster on March 11, 2011, I was able to travel from the city of Kamaisi Prefecture Iwate to Rikudzentakatu, and then back to Tokyo via Minamisoma in Fukushima Prefecture. Most recently, the super typhoon Hagibis hit the eastern part of Japan, which includes Fukushima prefecture and the area affected by the nuclear accident. The tour provides details and information of what had happened, what is happening now in the area. With Fukushima, we are talking about serious radioactive water leakage. And Fukushima is still dangerous today. Fukushima is now working to eliminate the accident. Upon completion of the investigation of the incident, it was decided to detain the president of the company and one of its employees. All rights reserved. But with reports of leaks, contamination and a risky new operation, Channel 4 News asks: is it too late? The agreed standard between TEPCO and the local fishing industry association is 1,500 becquerels per liter (Bq/l), which is far below the drinking water standard for tritium water of 10,000 Bq/l set by the World Health Organization. The report contains information on discharges from the subdrain and groundwater drain systems, as well … Terms of UsePrivacy Policy, 1307 East 60th Street, Chicago, IL 60637 | 773.702.6308, An update from Fukushima, and the challenges that remain there, 100,000 evacuees have filed about 30 different civil lawsuits, Your support of our work at any level is important, https://www.iaea.org/newscenter/focus/fukushima/status-update, What a MERS outbreak taught South Korea, why kids draw the coronavirus, and more: The best disruptive tech stories of 2020. It would take too long to describe all of the technical challenges of the decommissioning operations, but two recent events are instructive of the overall difficulties. But now the rest (2 trillion yen) will be footed by Japanese taxpayers. After a nuclear catastrophe, such surveys are conducted in Fukushima every year. In return, we promise our coverage will be understandable, influential, vigilant, solution-oriented, and fair-minded. To make matters worse, the power utilities are passing on part of the accident cleanup costs to customers by increasing their electricity rates, but without disclosing the amount. In Fukushima, the ubiquitous bags with contaminated soil are interspersed with pointers reporting current radiation readings. The total cost was estimated at almost 22 trillion yen ($188 billion), which was twice as much as the previous estimate of 11 trillion yen ($96 billion). TERSO declares that by now all the water that has leaked out of the fence has been collected, and the likelihood of it being able to enter the sea through underground drainage is unlikely. The leak was found in zone H4, located on the slope of the hill near the 4th power unit: the rainwater was outside the fence, installed around 58 tanks with water. More than 100,000 evacuees have filed about 30 different civil lawsuits seeking compensation from TEPCO and the government. In the coastal cities of Iwate Prefecture, Fokushima, whole hills of muddy mud and completely devastated fields mark places where ruins and chaos once reigned. This was the only criminal case so far involving TEPCO officials and, although they were found not guilty, the case revealed new facts regarding the tsunami predictions. The most difficult challenge is, of course, the decommissioning of the Fukushima Daiichi reactors. TEPCO to install additional storage tanks "Tokyo Electric Power Company will … This was reported on Tuesday by law enforcement authorities of the prefecture. Do tactical nukes break international law? What is happening on December 21 2020? Today, December 21 st is a … In the empty lands around Fukushima today, most of the radiation is long since gone. Today, around 100 cubic meters of groundwater become contaminated at Fukushima every day, and 1 million tons of radioactive water is stored in 994 … The world is responding to Japan's call for help at the stricken Fukushima nuclear plant. People were heavily threatened by aftershocks for over 500 times, and over 16 meters high mega tsunami attacked the area. Every single day, 300 tons of radioactive water from Fukushima enters the Pacific Ocean. Fukushima Daiichi was designed to withstand a six-metre tsunami - 15 metres was just too much. Tatsujiro Suzuki is vice director and professor at the Research Center for Nuclear Weapons Abolition at Nagasaki University, Japan.... By Matt Field | Disruptive Technologies, By Jaroslav Krasny | Nuclear Risk, Voices of Tomorrow, By Dan Drollette Jr | Analysis, Climate Change, By Mekdela Maskal | Climate Change, By Daisy Simmons | Climate Change, By John Krzyzaniak | Nuclear Risk, By Alexander C. Kaufman | Climate Change, By Nitish Pahwa | Climate Change, Copyright © 2020 Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists. My daughter is in Hokaido now (500 kms north of Fukushima) and she tells me that the New Zealand parents of her friends are in a state of panic, while life carries on as normal there. This has become the biggest scandal since the 2011 Fukushima accident and has exposed the collusive relationship between the utility companies and local public officials as well as the connection between the utilities and local construction companies, which may have benefited from favorable contracts for necessary safety upgrades at the nuclear plants. What’s really happening at Fukushima? This is the result of a survey of the population conducted in 2014. So the stack must come down, and the operation to deconstruct it must be done remotely from the stack itself to avoid exposing workers to dangerous radiation. According to the latest public polling conducted in 2018 by Japan Atomic Energy Relations Organization, a utility-sponsored pro-nuclear organization, only 6.7 percent of the public think nuclear industry organizations are trustworthy or somewhat trustworthy (a decline from 7 percent in 2017), and only 7.9 percent of the public think the government is trustworthy or somewhat trustworthy (a decline from 9.2 percent in 2017). Eight years have passed since a tsunami smashed into the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant in Japan, sparking a meltdown and the worst atomic crisis since Chernobyl. TEPCO reported irregular readings from sensors monitoring water at the Fukushima Daiichi plant but did not confirm whether any radioactive water leaked into the sea. 100 thousand people were forced to leave their homes. This exceptionally high cost may have influenced the future economic competitiveness of nuclear power. According to him, in the first days after the accident, domestic specialists from Rosenergoatom and IBRAE were sent to Tokyo with all the calculations made by that time, predicting the development of the situation at the power units and possible radioactive contamination. In the period following the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster, Japan saw the release of harmful radioactive pollutants or radionuclides, such as iodine131, cesium134, cesium137, strontium90, and plutonium238, among many others. Last week, workers blocked the storm drainage access to the drainage after they found increased radiation in the water. The Japanese authorities decided to evacuate more than one hundred thousand people from the territories around the nuclear power plant, the process of returning the displaced population is still being postponed. The Japanese government and nuclear industry have not solved the many technical, economic, and socio-political challenges brought on by the accident. Iwate and Miyagi Prefecture got … Ahead of Georgia’s runoff elections for US Senate, what do young climate activists think? An additional condition of release, however, is that all other radioactive substances besides tritium must be removed below a detectable limit or in line with regulatory standards. Billions of dollars went to programs to help and clean up the contaminated area. Life before the Chernobyl disaster. But what is happening in Fukushima today at the scene of the accident … On March 11, 2011 at the nuclear power plant in Fukushima, as a result of the tsunami, a serious accident occurred, the consequences of which could not be eliminated until now. The ongoing technical, economic, and socio-political problems demonstrate that the nuclear power industry and the Japanese government haven’t learned their lesson from the Fukushima accident, which is that transparency is the key to public trust. But listen to the Arnie Gunderson audio interview at the bottom of this email. Indeed, thats what the members of the local and central government, as we… These two recent events show that social and political problems persist even eight years after the Fukushima accident. Keywords: Fukushima, Fukushima Daiichi, decommissioning, decontamination, nuclear energy Their exact content in discarded garbage is not reported. But in the United States, similar units were upgraded, and the possible risks were reduced. Recall that as a result of an earthquake measuring 9 points off the coast of the Japanese island of Honshu on March 11, 2011, a 15-meter wave of tsunami rose, which led to the de-energization of the cooling system of three reactors at the Fukushima-1 nuclear power plant and the melting of their active zones. This stack stands 120 meters tall and is at risk of collapse because of fractures in its pillars. Bulletin’s best climate change coverage of 2020. According to the police, employees of the construction company involved in the work as a contractor, in September 2013, threw out about 515 kg of soil contaminated with radioactive substances in a residential courtyard in the city of Tamura. On March 11, 2011 at the nuclear power plant in Fukushima, as a result of the tsunami, a serious accident occurred, the consequences of which could not be eliminated until now. But the ghosts linger. https://www.iaea.org/newscenter/focus/fukushima/status-update. With the secondary containments damaged, these exposed spent fuel pools would have a direct path to release radiation into the environment if the water level truly has dried out, leading to local radiation levels that would make it difficult to continue cooling operations on the site. More than seven years after the March 2011 Fukushima nuclear crisis, radioactive water is continuing to flow into the Pacific Ocean from the crippled No. The operator, TERSO, reported a leak of approximately 750 tons of rainwater saturated with radionuclides. Chamber B 181.2 °C. The company reported that at about 10 am local time, an alarm was triggered at the nuclear power plant. Temporary settlement for people who had to leave their homes in the village of Okuma. The so-called “treated water” is being stored on site and amounts to about 1.1 million tons, with several hundred tons being added every day. The radioactive material that is being released will outlive all of us by a very wide margin, and it is constantly building up in the food chain. On September 27, 2019, the Kansai Electric Power Company held a press conference to disclose that 20 of its employees, including top executives, received inappropriate payments and gifts worth a total of $2.9 million from a senior local government official in Takahama, a town that hosts one of the company’s four nuclear power plants. This development is extremely surprising because sp… The water is continuously injected into the reactors to cool the fuel debris, and then treated to remove most—though not all—of the radioactive materials. Today's temperatures are: 6/08 Chamber A 148.9 °C. According to the Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO), the operation was supposed to be simple: cut down the top of the tower using special remote-controlled equipment, slicing pieces from the top of the chimney one by one and guiding them down by crane. Workers stack bags of soil collected during Fukushima decontamination and cleanup operations, 2011. Daisuke Hirose, a Tepco spokesman, inside the Unit 5 reactor at the Fukushima nuclear power plant. None of us could have calculated in our wildest dreams the extent of what is happening in northern Japan and how the radiation would spread across the northern hemisphere. But last year, Japan’s government confirmed for the first time that leukemia found in a worker at the Fukushima No.1 power plant is a result of the March 2011 disaster. the accident at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant, The terrible buried village of Chernobyl – Kopachi, Abandoned police station in Pripyat. Although Kansai Electric Power Company planned to restart units one and two of its Takahama nuclear plant earlier this year, that plan is now on hold indefinitely. Nearly a decade after Japan's Fukushima nuclear disaster, researchers have discovered that wildlife is thriving in the areas evacuated by humans, despite radiological contamination. Several district courts have ruled that TEPCO could have predicted and prevented the nuclear crisis and have awarded millions of dollars in damages to the evacuees. The meltdown at Fukushima was caused when a 9.0-magnitude earthquake off the north-east coast of Japan triggered a tsunami on March 11, 2011. Reactors 1 2 and 3 stopped automatically at the time of the earthquake, while the remaining three were already unemployed for maintenance. On Monday, the depth of the accumulations of water was 15 cm, on Tuesday it dropped to 8 cm. More worrying, they continue to put special interests ahead of the public interest, exacerbating the challenges and squandering public trust. The government’s lack of transparency in agreeing to this scheme is a source of ongoing concern, not least because the taxpayer burden could balloon if total costs go up, or if the nuclear utilities cannot pay off the debt. It is true that the quantity of information about cleanup has increased substantially over the years. If you are interested in helping support the WHOI Fukushima sampling project, or to learn more about the sampling locations and results, visit www.ourradioactiveocean.org. Lack of such an independent oversight organization is one of the main causes for not taking alternative and possibly better, more appropriate measures over the last eight years. In addition, according to the Tamura city government, some bulk bags filled with soil collected from decontamination operations were swept into a river during the typhoon on October 12. Yet today, the scale of radioactive contamination throughout northeastern Japan is no longer what it used to be since 2011. Just who are the people in Biden’s climate cabinet. The Bulletin elevates expert voices above the noise. “Various missions of the World Association of Operators of Nuclear Power Plants (WANO) and the IAEA at Fukushima-1 pointed to the shortcomings of this American first-generation station project developed by General Elecric. And when it got to the point, time was already lost, “Bolshov said. The police of the Japanese prefecture of Fukushima, who suffered from the accident at the same nuclear power plant in 2011, detained two participants in the decontamination work for the release of radioactive debris in the area near the apartment building. The Fukushima brand may forever be associated with nuclear catastrophe, but some residents, angered by persistent rumours about the dangers of … Together we can make a difference. Unfortunately, in August 2019 news outlets reported that some radioactive materials such as iodine 129 were not completely removed and that their concentration levels were above the regulatory standards. The accident received a seven-point rating on the scale of INES (International scale of nuclear events) because of the large amount of radioactive release from the fourth to the sixth day. Scary place, Children’s polyclinic of Pripyat. As I drove south through the city of Natori on the Miyagi Coast and drove past the restricted area surrounding the disabled Fukushima-1 nuclear power plant, endless mountains of black garbage bags swept towards me, and it seemed that each of them begged me to answer his unresolved issue. In December 2016, the Ministry of Trade, Economy, and Industry’s committee for reforming TEPCO published its latest estimate for total accident costs, including decommissioning the reactors, compensation, and decontamination of the land. In October, the chairman, executive vice president, and three executive directors resigned, while the president of the company stepped down from his position as the head of the powerful Federation of Electric Power Companies of Japan. The first is the dismantlement of the joint exhaust stack for units one and two. The operation was supposed to finish by the end of 2019 but will now drag on until at least March 2020. Eight years ago, a magnitude 9 earthquake shook Japan, leading to a terrifying tsunami that killed 15,896 people. And the Japanese decided: the station was left one or two years before the end of operation, the period of its operation will be extended or not, it is unknown, it is better to save money, “the scientist explained. Socio-political challenges. The 2016 report was the first time that the Japanese government admitted that tax money would be spent for the Fukushima accident costs. TEPCO isn’t the only utility with a public relations problem. This March 11, 2012, file photo, shows three melted reactors, from left, Unit 1, Unit 2 and Unit 3 at Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant in Okuma, Fukushima prefecture, Japan. Now, then, and the future: Read the 75th Anniversary Issue. At present, no utility has announced plans to build new reactors or to replace existing reactors. About 20,000 disappeared and dead have been confirmed. Lessons not learned. 71% of the residents of Fukushima prefecture are dissatisfied with the work of the government and TERSO to eliminate the consequences of the nuclear accident in 2011. In the mid-afternoon on the 11th Match, 2011, the giant earthquake with moment magnitude of 9.0 in Japan. Your support of our work at any level is important. Dark corners of the hospital, I lived in the dead city of Pripyat 10 days, Pripyat and the inhabitants. Let’s see what Fukushima 6 looks like after the disaster. TEPCO reported irregular readings from sensors monitoring water at the Fukushima Daiichi plant but did not confirm whether any radioactive water leaked into the sea. For them, it is now clear that the accident was preventable and that no one at TEPCO will be held accountable for their lack of action to prevent it. February 24, 2015. The longer these issues remain unsolved, the more difficult it will be to restore this trust. Q1: What’ s happening now at the site? It is located 10km south of FUKUSHIMA I -the DIACHI plant- which has been the subject of all of my updates to date. I am not a big fan of nuclear power, but I believe your paper's coverage of what is happening in Fukushima Japan verges on the hysterical. This is as real as you can get to see what actually is happening inside the area years after the earthquake strucked. The world is about to change a lot, according to some conspiracy theorists. According to the press service of TERSO, the water accumulated inside the fence contains up to 8.300 Bq / l of beta-emitting substances. A panel of experts that have been advising on the best disposal method for radioactive water from the destroyed nuclear plant made the recommendation today - … Workers in the Fukushima today in protective overalls and masks collect radioactive earth and leaves in the small town of Tomioka, which is near the power plant in Fukushima. The company of Tokyo Denreku is investigating the situation. March 11, 2015 was no exception. The Fukushima nuclear accident refers to events that took place at the Fukushima I Nuclear Power Plant (Fukushima Daiichi) as a result of the earthquake and tsunami in the area of Sendai on March 11, 2011. Update #14: June 4, 2011 – 1 by Nelle Maxey Stories at NHK today are below. Yet, Fukushima … Measurements showed that the level of beta-particle emitting substances, whose content under normal conditions is minimal, increased to 7.230 becquerels per liter, which is 10 times higher than it is during the rains. Although the criminal case was highly symbolic, it is not the only legal one involving TEPCO and Fukushima. Fukushima Today by Robert Hunziker. A1: Since March 2011, all six reactors at the Fukushima Daiichi site have been shut down, awaiting eventual decommissioning. A 2008 TEPCO internal study, based on a 2002 report by a government panel, concluded that a wave of up to 15.7 meters could hit the plant after a magnitude 8.3 earthquake, overwhelming the Fukushima site, which sits 10 meters above sea level. It was also heavily contaminated by the venting of radioactive gases during the accident. Today’s concerns seem focused on the spent fuel pools, particularly in units 3 and 4. Arkadiusz Podniesiński, 44, is a Polish photographer and filmmaker who received special permits to visit the towns in Fukushima affected by radiation from the … Thankfully, there was no evidence that any of the contaminated soil leaked out. The contaminated soil will need to be stored for at least 30 years, and the risk of possible leakage remains if a larger and stronger typhoon, or a tsunami, hits the region again. The site is on Japan’s Pacific coast, in northeastern Fukushima prefecture about 100 km (60 miles) south of Sendai. Both denied their guilt at the first interrogation. On September 19, 2019, three former top executives of TEPCO were found not guilty of criminal negligence for their roles in the disaster, which resulted in the death of 44 and the injury of 13 others. The Tokyo district court ruled that it was not realistic for the former executives to have prevented the triple core meltdown because they were not able to predict all possible tsunami scenarios. The findings were reported to the TEPCO executives, but they did not act to take measures against such high-tsunami scenarios. Reactors 4, 5, and 6 … According to the legal scheme established by the ministry, TEPCO and other nuclear utilities will pay about 20 trillion yen of the total accident costs. Economic challenges. According to TEPCO, the total tank capacity to store treated water will be approximately 1.37 million tons by the end of 2020, but the volume of treated water will exceed storage capacity by 2022. The cutting operation began on August 1, but the project has already faced numerous additional delays because of technical difficulties that include malfunctions of the crane, the camera on the cutting machine (which is needed to monitor the operation), the saws of the cutting machine, and both the main generator and sub-generators. White smoke was seen coming out of unit 3, indicative of burning Zirconium and therefore melting rods. 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