Monday, March 28, 2011

Monday Evening Update

From NEI's Japan Earthquake launch page:

UPDATE AS OF 7 P.M. EDT, MONDAY, MARCH 28:
The International Atomic Energy Agency said that Japan's Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency is planning a meeting with Tokyo Electric Power Co. to determine the origin of contaminated water in the turbine buildings at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant.

Contaminated water from the basement floor of the reactor 1 turbine building is being pumped into its main condenser. At reactor 2 that process has not begun because the steam condenser is full, IAEA said. Pumping contaminated water is being considered at reactors 3 and 4.

Three workers who received radiation exposure from standing in contaminated water were released today from the National Institute of Radiological Sciences, where they had been under observation. The level of localized exposure received by two of the workers is between 200 to 300 rem, lower than the previous estimate of 200 to 600 rem, IAEA said.

Radiation Monitoring Continues

Results from ocean monitoring stations up to 18 miles off the shoreline from the Fukushima Daiichi plant showed levels of iodine-131 at most locations were below federal limits. IAEA said results from four monitoring stations on March 26 showed iodine-131 concentrations were between 162 and 486 picocuries (1 picocurie is one-trillionth of a curie) per liter. Cesium-137 concentrations ranged from below the level of detection up to 432 picocuries per liter.
IAEA said that it is still too early to draw conclusions for expected concentrations in marine food, because the situation can change rapidly.

The latest sampling shows that drinking water in Fukushima and Ibaraki prefectures remain below the Japanese limits for the ingestion of drinking water by infants. Iodine-131 was reported in food samples taken from March 26 to March 27 in six prefectures (Fukushima, Gunma, Ibaraki, Niigata, Tochigi and Yamagata) in vegetables, strawberries and watermelon.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency identified trace amounts of radioactive isotopes at its 12 RadNet air monitor locations across the nation. The levels are extremely low and are far below levels that would be a public health concern. EPA's samples were captured by monitors in Alaska, Alabama, California, Hawaii, Idaho, Nevada and Washington state over the past week and sent to EPA scientists for detailed laboratory analysis.

For more information about radiation, see NEI's Web page on health and radiation safety. For detailed information on EPA's RadNet air monitor locations, click here.

4 comments:

netudiant said...

The Austrians report massive emissions from the plant equivalent to 10% of the Chernobyl total every day, mostly iodine 131 but also about 10% cesium 137.
They base this on the CNTBT monitoring network.
The web site http://www.zamg.ac.at/ is in German but the tables and dispersion maps are self explanatory.
These emissions have been blown to sea almost continuously since the accident, but are not reported anywhere else.
If the wind shifts, they will come as a severe shock to the Japanese people.
Could someone knowledgeable explain how long these emissions are projected to continue, where they come from and what is their likely impact.

jimwg said...

"No Threat From Japanese Radiation Spread Across U.S."
Published March 28, 2011
Associated Press

It'd help further dispell radioation's eternally virulent "creeping glowing fog" perception if the AP put into contrast how weak these traces are; that such are found in volcanic eruptions, and that were there detectors so designed one could detect particulates from Chinese coal-fired plants in the U.S. or sand from Sahara sandstorms.

Already cable busuness shows are inviting more and more biased "consultants" announcing that this is the "final nail in the coffin for nuclear energy" and Greenpeace has started to "review" even thermonuclear fusion on their anything nuclear exorcism list.

Where is the nuclear industry's demand to have the media fair and balanced?

David Bradish said...

netudiant, there are not massive emissions coming out of the plant. That implies the reactor cores are exposed like Chernobyl and that's not the case. A piece in the BBC news explains that the "radioactive fallout at Fukushima is less than 1% of that at Chernobyl."

jimwg, the whole nuclear industry is mobilized and talking with the media as much as possible. Of course, it would be easier if the media only listened to us (ha ha), but that's simply not the case. We just have to continue to present the facts and help folks under the situation and put it into perspective. I'd have to say not all is bad with the media, there are quite a number of good pieces out there which we've tried to highlight. If you have ideas on how the industry could be more effective, please share them.

Atomikrabbit said...

“If you have ideas on how the industry could be more effective, please share them.”

The only way the media is going to give equal treatment to nuclear is when you are spending as much on daily advertising as the oil/gas/coal industry. In the meantime, for every reactor-year of delay, postponement, or premature cancellation they can create, the fossil energy interests make an extra $365 million in revenue. Tilting the media is a pay-to-play game.

Nuclear was an industry created by scientific geniuses, and destroyed (in the democracies anyway) by media executives, politicians, and lawyers.