Dead dophins in Fukushima found with white irradiated lungs — ” Japanese scientists are saying they have never seen anything like what they discovered after autopsying a massive group of dolphins that ended up dead after being discovered stranded on a beach near the site of the 2011 Fukushima disaster.

Their lungs were white, which, according to scientists, is an indication of loss of blood flow to the organs which is an indication of radiation poisoning.

The translated article comes from EneNews:

Google Translate: Ibaraki Prefecture… for a large amount of dolphin which was launched on the shore… the National Science Museum… investigated… researchers rushed from national museums and university laboratory, about 30 people were the anatomy of the 17 animals in the field. [According to Yuko Tajima] who led the investigation… “the lungs of most of the 17… was pure white ischemic state, visceral signs of overall clean and disease and infections were observed”… Lungs white state, that has never seen before.

Systran: The National Science Museum… investigated circumstance and cause etc concerning the mass dolphin which is launched to the seashore of Ibaraki prefecture… the researchers ran from the museum and the university laboratory… approximately 30 people dissected 17… [Yuko Tajima] of the National Science Museum which directed investigation research worker [said] “the most lung 17 was state with true white, but as for the internal organs being clean”… The lung true white as for state, says… have not seen.

Fukushima Diary, Apr 12, 2015: According to National Science Museum, most of the inspected 17 dolphins had their lungs in ischaemia state… The chief of the researching team stated “Most of the lungs looked entirely white”… internal organs were generally clean without any symptoms of disease or infection, but most of the lungs were in ischaemia state. She said “I have never seen such a state”.

Wikipedia: Ischemia is a vascular disease involving an interruption in the arterial blood supply to a tissue, organ, or extremity that, if untreated, can lead to tissue death.

Many reports have been published on the links between ischemia and radiation exposure:

“It has been shown that the ionizing radiation in small doses under certain conditions can be considered as one of starting mechanisms of… IHD [ischemic heart disease].”

“Radiation risks on non-cancer effects has been revealed in the [Chernobyl] liquidators… Recently, the statistically significant dose risk of ischemic heart disease… was published.”

“Incidence of and mortality from ischemic heart disease (IHD) have been studied in a cohort of 12210 workers [at] Mayak nuclear facility… there was statistically significant increasing trend in IHD incidence with total external gamma dose.”

“Numerous studies have been published concerning non cancer diseases in liquidators… Risk of ischemic heart disease… seems increased.”

“In 1990 the International Chernobyl Project has been carried out under the aegis of the IAEA… It is known that the international experts who had taken part in the International Chernobyl Project were aware of the report by the Minster of the Ministry of Health Care of Belarus delivered at an informal meeting arranged by the IAEA… The Belorussian Minister reported about… the worsening of the general health state of the affected population… “Among adults in 1988 there was a two- to fourfold increase, in comparison with preceding years, in the number of persons suffering from… ischemic heart diseases”

“In a study on a Russian cohort of 61,000 Chernobyl emergency workers… a statistically significant risk of ischemic heart disease was observed.”  


Radioactive water leaking into sea — NHK World

” The operator of the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant says radioactively contaminated rainwater is spilling outside the facility’s port after pumps to prevent leakage stopped working.

In February, Tokyo Electric Power Company, or TEPCO, found that radioactive rainwater that had accumulated on the roof of the plant’s No. 2 reactor building was leaking outside the port through a drainage channel.

TEPCO blocked the channel and installed 8 pumps in a tentative measure to reroute the channel so that contaminated water would not leak into the sea.

The firm started operating the pumps last Friday. But on Tuesday, a worker found that they had stopped and the water was going into the sea.

TEPCO officials say they don’t know the amount or radioactive level of the water. But they say that as of April 9th, the level was extremely low.

They add that the pumps were working normally when workers checked them on Monday afternoon. They say they don’t know what caused the problem or when they can restart the pumps.

The pumps can handle rainfall up to 14 millimeters per hour. It was not raining heavily when they presumably stopped. ”


Updated 4/21/2015: Tepco issues video of robot stranded in reactor — NHK World; Second ‘transformer’ robot completes mission inside crippled nuclear reactor — The Asahi Shimbun

Posted April 21, 2015, NHK World:

” The operator of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant has issued a video of a robot stranded inside one of the damaged reactors.

The video released by Tokyo Electric Power Company on Monday shows the remote-controlled robot tilting to the right inside the containment vessel of the No.1 reactor.

The robot was sent inside the vessel on April 10th but stopped working after advancing just 10 meters. The utility has since given up on recovering the device.

TEPCO sent a second robot to retrieve the first robot. But the probe’s camera malfunctioned due to radiation exposure.

The utility decided to abandon both robot probes.

TEPCO says video footage shows no major damage to a part leading to the bottom of the containment vessel. Melted nuclear fuel fell on the vessel in the 2011 accident.

The operator says it will analyze the footage and other data to remove the fuel. ”


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Posted April 20, 2015, The Asahi Shimbun:

” The second shape-shifting robotic probe sent into the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant has successfully surveyed the inside of a reactor after the failure of the first unit, the plant operator announced on April 16.

The robot was sent into the containment vessel inside the No. 1 reactor building on April 15 and scanned along an approximately 15-meter-long path, Tokyo Electric Power Co. said.

The machine was sent in to complete the mission of the first unit, which stalled April 10 just hours after it was sent inside the reactor.

The second robot measured radiation levels in three locations inside the containment vessel, which varied from a deadly 6.7 to 8.3 sieverts per hour.

The figures were similar to the measurements taken by the first robot, which read between 7.0 and 9.7 sieverts per hour in six locations.

All of those measurements indicate sufficient levels of radiation to kill a human in about one hour.

The identical robot units were developed by the International Research Institute for Nuclear Decommissioning to chart areas inside reactor containment vessels where humans cannot enter because of high radiation levels. Three reactors at the plant experienced meltdowns following the March 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake and tsunami.

Each robot is 60 centimeters long in its normal state, but can change shape depending on the space it is trying to enter. The probes are operated via connecting cables.

The utility plans to analyze the footage and radioactivity readings taken by the robots in hopes of utilizing the data when eventually removing the melted nuclear fuel from inside the building.

The second robot is scheduled to be retrieved on April 17. ”


Delivery of radioactive soil to interim storage begins in Fukushima — The Japan Times

” FUKUSHIMA – Workers on Friday began delivering soil and other radiation-tainted waste generated by the decontamination work following the 2011 Fukushima nuclear crisis to a makeshift storage yard at a storage facility in the prefecture.

The government plans to build depositories on around 16 sq. km of land in the towns of Okuma and Futaba, which host the crippled Fukushima No. 1 power plant, to eventually store massive amounts of radioactive waste. But the plan remains highly uncertain amid slow progress in negotiations with landowners.

Contaminated waste was delivered Friday to a section of the site in Okuma, but shipments to the Futaba section were delayed until March 25 at the request of local authorities.

The Environment Ministry decided to move the waste — still being stored near residents’ homes and other places across the prefecture four years after the crisis began — to the temporary storage yard.

“The start of delivery marks a major step forward for the rebirth and reconstruction of Fukushima. I’d like to thank local communities for accepting it,” Environment Minister Yoshio Mochizuki told a news conference Friday.

Over the next year, around 43,000 cu. meters of waste — equivalent to less than 1 percent of the estimated total of 22 million cu. meters created by the Fukushima No. 1 reactor meltdowns — will be delivered, the ministry said.

The government is negotiating with about 2,400 landowners to secure the land needed for the facilities, but many people have voiced strong concern that the storage could end up being permanent if the land is acquired by the state. Others are refusing to sell because the land was owned by their families for generations. ”


Expected surge in workers hitting radiation limit leaves No. 1 plant’s decommissioning in jeopardy — The Japan Times

” The decommissioning crew at the defunct Fukushima No. 1 power plant is losing 174 members who have reached the legal limit for radiation exposure.

As of January, the 174 had topped the limit of 100 millisieverts in five years spelled out under the Industrial Safety and Health Act, which also limits nuclear power plant workers to a maximum exposure rate of 50 millisieverts per year.

The plant has about 14,000 registered workers, but 2,081 have already received 50 to 100 millisieverts of exposure.

Since most of the heavy lifting in the most highly radioactive areas has yet to be done, experts say the country and Tokyo Electric Power Co., the plant’s operator, must find a way to consistently secure enough labor to finish the job.

As of January, a total of 41,170 people had worked at the plant since the crisis began in March 2011, and only the 174 who reached maximum exposure had left.

But many companies that send staff to the plant move them to other positions with lower exposure before they reach the legal limit. So a majority of the 2,081 workers between 50 and 100 millisieverts have already been transferred. As time passes, however, more and more are expected to test the limit.

The International Commission on Radiological Protection sets the average radiation dose for nuclear workers over five years at 20 millisieverts per year.

“Firms tend to transfer workers whose radiation exposure exceeds 20 millisieverts per year from their posts at the nuclear power plant,” said a 57-year-old employee at one of the companies that have managed radiation exposure at the Fukushima No. 1 and No. 2 plants for about 20 years.

Tepco claims it is not facing a shortage at Fukushima No. 1 because its worker list averaged about 14,200 between January and December last year, or about 3,000 more than the number who actually did decommissioning work there during the same period.

In response to projections that more employees will be unable to work due to radiation exposure, Tepco “will respond to the situation by reducing the level of radiation at the plant,” the utility said.

Meanwhile, an official at the Agency for Natural Resources and Energy came clean on the uncertainty of the situation.

“It is unclear to some extent whether it will be possible to secure enough labor until the decommissioning process is completed,” he said, adding the agency will urge Tepco to improve the working environment.

Four years have passed since the triple meltdown, and radiation has declined. But the decommissioning work will only get more onerous as the number of operations around the reactors grows.

In fiscal 2015, which began this month, Tepco plans to remove fuel rods from the spent-fuel pool at reactor 3, which saw its core melt just like units 1 and 2.

To keep exposure down, most of the operations will be conducted remotely. But setting up the equipment means getting close will be inevitable.

According to various scenarios, a long-term labor system is needed to ensure the project’s continuity 30 to 40 years down the line, when it is supposed to be finished, said Shigeaki Tsunoyama, head of the Fukushima Prefectural Government’s safety advisory group for nuclear power plants.

“If experienced workers leave the plant due to their radiation exposure levels, decommissioning will stall. The government and Tepco have to take some steps as early as possible,” he said. ”


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Also read The Asahi Shimbun article, “Health ministry proposes more than doubling radiation exposure limit.”

Health ministry proposes more than doubling radiation exposure limit — The Asahi Shimbun

” The health ministry recommends raising the maximum radiation-exposure limit for nuclear plant workers during an emergency from the current 100 millisieverts to 250 millisieverts.

The proposed figure, contained in a report completed April 17 by a panel of experts at the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare, would then be precisely half that of the 500-millisievert limit set by the International Atomic Energy Agency.

After the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster, the maximum limit of exposure in emergencies was temporarily raised to 250 millisieverts for workers at the plant as an exceptional measure. Nine months later it was returned to 100 millisieverts.

The health ministry began considering raising the maximum radiation exposure limit for workers at all nuclear plants to 250 millisieverts following a suggestion by the Nuclear Regulation Authority in December. The new limit will be rubber-stamped after being examined by two ministry committees.

Currently, the health ministry also sets the upper limit of cumulative radiation exposure at 100 millisieverts over a five-year period in nonemergency cases.

It instructs plant operators not to exceed this limit for workers even when the accumulated exposures in emergency and nonemergency cases are combined. ”