Never Forget Fukushima | The Jackal

4 Apr 2011

Never Forget Fukushima

There's an acknowledgement that unit two has had a meltdown or a core on the floor however confirmation of this and information as to how much radiation has been released is limited. The environmental impact of the disaster is as yet unknown.

Unit 5 is experiencing problems with its temperature, which has at times been 25% higher than its peak operational limit. Units 1, 2 and 3 are now officially considered to be level 5 "accidents" the same as Three Mile Island.

Temporary lighting has been restored in some areas of Fukushima Dai-ichi and yesterday pumps to Units 1, 2 and 3 were switched over to a mains supply.

The Japanese Prime Minister has complained that he is finding everything out from media reports and Tepco’s management are not informing him directly about the latest developments. The traditional introversion of the Japanese is accompanied by a real lack of information, which is making the situation difficult. Medical personnel around the area have also complained that it is difficult to respond when information is limited.

Radiation has been found in foodstuffs and water supplies around Fukushima. The ban on drinking water has been lifted for adults but remains for children. Greenpeace have undertaken some testing showing high levels of airborne radiation well outside of the exclusion zone. The level of radiation is a serious health risk and can lead to illnesses such as Leukaemia and Cancer. High levels of radiation have been found in the seawater surrounding the nuclear facility and fishing in the area is banned. On the 2 April concrete was poured into the trench system to try and stop radioactive water from dispersing into the ocean from what is believed to be Unit 2, there has been no reduction in radiation levels from this procedure.

There is a plan to use tanker ships to remove some of the radioactive water from the network of tunnels beneath the reactors as the on land tankers are fill. Two US Barges have provided fresh water to the filtering system. Another plan is to spray the radioactive area in a special resin to stop radioactive dust from spreading. There are conflicting reports as to the effectiveness of the helicopter water drops and radiation levels were shown to rise afterwards. Japan's Defense Forces have aborted its latest plans to spray water on reactor #3. Passenger aircraft that have flown through the fallout area have shown radiation contamination.

Two more workers have been exposed to high levels of radiation. This brings the known number of workers who have had dangerous levels of exposure to five. Two Tepco employees who had been missing since the earthquake of 11 March, were found dead in the 1st Level of the Turbine Building of Unit 4.

Japanese engineers conceded on Friday that burying a crippled nuclear plant in sand and concrete may be the only way to prevent a catastrophic radiation release. Many people continue to leave Japan.

The IAEA says that the situation remains very serious.