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    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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    Fukushima Radiation Scare Stories Are Going Viral. Are They Real Or FAKE?

    Fukushima Radiation Scare Stories Are Going Viral On the Internet. Are They Real Or Fake?

    By Benjamin Cosman January 7, 2014

    Fukushima Radiation Scare Stories Are Going Viral On the Internet. Are They Real Or Fake?Image Credit: AP

    The news: A few suspect news stories have been making the rounds on the internet in recent days, suggesting that radiation from the Fukushima power plant disaster has hit the West Coast of the United States and is causing major harm to the Pacific Ocean off California.

    Most pernicious is the report from NaturalNews.com that a scientific study found a significant drop off in sea life in the Pacific Ocean near the U.S. coast.

    So should you trust these scare stories? Absolutely not.

    The fine folks at Deep Sea News — which features writers with academic degrees, actual professional credentials, and expert knowledge — are doing their best to debunk the rumors spreading about Fukushima radiation and its impact on the U.S.

    Take the dangers of radiation hitting California. Will it kill you? Are we all going to die? DSNhas your answer: "No it will not be dangerous … It's not even dangerous to swim off the coast of Fukushima."

    If you went swimming in the waters right next to the actual power plant, you would only experience "0.03% of the daily radiation an average Japanese resident receives."

    So I'm thinking everybody in the U.S. will be OK.


    Image: AP

    But back to that story about sea life dying in droves off the California coast: what's going on? The Natural News article cites an actual study with scientific evidence published in a real academic journal. There has to be some truth to the fact that "the number of dead sea creatures blanketing the floor of the Pacific is higher than it has ever been in the 24 years that monitoring has taken place, a phenomenon that the data suggests is a direct consequence of nuclear fallout from Fukushima."

    If true, that's pretty freaking scary. That means radiation from Fukushima is killing off mass amounts of sea creatures right off the U.S. coast. The only problem is that the study the article cites contains no actual mention of Fukushima.

    In fact, the study offers a perfectly logical explanation for the mass die-offs: a natural cycle of increasing and decreasing levels of algae and other sea life depending on climate and the seasons.

    The study's findings even cite trends that began five years before the Fukushima disaster occurred. Indeed, the study's authors have gone out of their way to be very clear: "There is no indication that any of the events in this study were associated with the Fukushima nuclear accident."



    Image: AP
    So the only connection between the study and Fukushima is a bogus extrapolation by the writers at Natural News.

    With all of these Fukushima scare stories out there, it might be tempting to give in to the paranoia and start thinking the U.S. is going to become a nuclear wasteland. There are certainly enough people who want you to panic, at least. But don't. As of right now, we're not in much danger from Fukushima radiation. Thankfully, there are people who know what they're talking about to remind us of the truth.


    http://www.policymic.com/articles/78...y-real-or-fake
    Last edited by JohnDoe2; 01-11-2014 at 03:09 PM.
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    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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    POSTED ON
    JANUARY 4, 2014 BY DR. M
    Is the sea floor littered with dead animals due to radiation? No.

    http://deepseanews.com/2014/01/is-th...-radiation-no/

    Dr. M Craig McClain is the Assistant Director of Science for the National Evolutionary Synthesis Center, created to facilitate research to address fundamental questions in evolutionary science. He has conducted deep-sea research for 11 years and published over 40 papers in the area. He has participated in dozens of expeditions taking him to the Antarctic and the most remote regions of the Pacific and Atlantic. Craig’s research focuses mainly on marine systems and particularly the biology of body size, biodiversity, and energy flow. He focuses often on deep-sea systems as a natural test of the consequences of energy limitation on biological systems. He is the author and chief editor of Deep-Sea News, a popular deep-sea themed blog, rated the number one ocean blog on the web and winner of numerous awards. Craig’s popular writing has been featured in Cosmos, Science Illustrated, American Scientist, Wired, Mental Floss, and the Open Lab: The Best Science Writing on the Web.

    http://deepseanews.com/2014/01/is-th...-radiation-no/
    Last edited by JohnDoe2; 01-12-2014 at 12:50 AM.
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    Defying Japan, Rancher Saves Fukushima’s Radioactive Cows

    By MARTIN FACKLERJAN. 11, 2014

    Launch media viewer
    Mr. Yoshizawa in his barn. Ko Sasaki for The New York Times


    NAMIE, Japan — His may be one of the world’s more quixotic protests.
    Angered by what he considers the Japanese government’s attempts to sweep away the inconvenient truths of the Fukushima nuclear disaster, Masami Yoshizawa has moved back to his ranch in the radioactive no-man’s land surrounding the devastated plant. He has no neighbors, but plenty of company: hundreds of abandoned cows he has vowed to protect from the government’s kill order.

    A large bulldozer — meant to keep out agricultural officials — stands at the entrance to the newly renamed Ranch of Hope like a silent sentinel, guarding a driveway lined with bleached cattle bones and handwritten protest signs.


    “Let the Cows of Hope Live!” says one. Another, written on a yellow-painted cow skull, declares: “Nuclear Rebellion!” Inside the now overcrowded ranch, bellowing cows spill from the overflowing cattle sheds into the well-worn pasture, and even trample the yard of the warmly lit farmhouse.


    “These cows are living testimony to the human folly here in Fukushima,” said Mr. Yoshizawa, 59, a gruff but eloquent man with a history of protest against his government. “The government wants to kill them because it wants to erase what happened here, and lure Japan back to its pre-accident nuclear status quo. I am not going to let them.”

    Launch media viewer
    At Masami Yoshizawa’s newly renamed Ranch of Hope, which is in the evacuation zone created by the 2011 disaster at Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant. Mr. Yoshizawa returned to take care of the abandoned cows on his own and other ranches in the area. Ko Sasaki for The New York Times

    Mr. Yoshizawa is no sentimentalist — before the disaster, he raised cows for slaughter. But he says there is a difference between killing cows for food and killing them because, in their contaminated state, they are no longer useful. He believes the cows on his ranch, abandoned by him and other fleeing farmers after the accident, are as much victims as the 83,000 humans forced to abandon their homes and live outside the evacuation zone for two and a half years.


    He is worried about his health. A dosage meter near the ranch house reads the equivalent of about 1.5 times the government-set level for evacuation. But he is more fearful that the country will forget about the triple meltdowns at the plant as Japan’s economy shows signs of long-awaited recovery and Tokyo excitedly prepares for the 2020 Olympics — suggesting his protest is as least as much a political statement, as a humanitarian one.


    “If authorities say kill the cows,” he said, “then I resolved to do the opposite by saving them.”


    The cows at the Ranch of Hope are what is left of a once-thriving beef industry in the towns around the plant.


    Entire herds died of starvation in the weeks after the residents left. The cows that survived escaped their ranches to forage for food among the empty homes and streets, where they became traffic hazards for trucks shuttling workers and supplies to and from the stricken plant. Proclaiming the animals “walking accident debris,” officials from the Ministry of Agriculture ordered them to be rounded up and slaughtered, their bodies buried or burned along with other radioactive waste.


    Outraged, Mr. Yoshizawa began returning to his ranch soon after to feed the remnants of the herd he had been tending. He eventually decided to return full time to turn the ranch into a haven for all of the area’s abandoned cows. Of the approximately 360 cows at his 80-acre spread, more than half are ones that others left behind.


    Although he describes his protest in mainly political terms, his explanation for returning despite the possible danger is tinged with a hint of emotion. He describes his horror on visiting abandoned farms where he found rows of dead cows, their heads fallen into food troughs where they had waited to be fed. In one barn, a newborn calf hoarsely bawled next to its dead mother. He said his spur-of-the-moment decision to save the calf, which he named Ichigo, or Strawberry, was his inspiration for trying to save the others left behind.

    He still searches the evacuation zone for the often emaciated survivors, which he often has to pull by their ears to get them to follow him home. He tries to dodge police roadblocks; it is technically illegal for anyone to live inside the evacuation zone. Nonetheless, he has been caught a half-dozen times and forced to sign prewritten statements of apology for entering the zone. He has done so, but only after crossing out the promises not to do it again.

    Mr. Yoshizawa is no stranger to challenging authority, having protested against nuclear power before. But he says he felt particularly bitter after the Fukushima accident, which he fears could permanently ruin the ranch that he inherited from his father.


    It does not help that his town, Namie, felt especially deceived by its leaders. After he heard the explosions at the plant, whose smokestacks and cranes are visible from his kitchen, he and many other townspeople ended up fleeing into the radioactive plume because the government did not disclose crucial information about the accident.


    “I needed to find a new philosophy to keep on living,” said Mr. Yoshizawa, who is unmarried and lives alone on the ranch. “Then I realized, why is Japan being so meek in accepting what authorities are telling them? I decided to become the resistance.”


    On a recent cold morning, Mr. Yoshizawa used a small bulldozer to carry bales of yellow rice stalks to feed the cows, about two to three times the number that he says his ranch can sustainably support. The cows, mostly a breed known as Japanese Black prized for its marbled wagyu-style beef, hungrily mooed as they jostled one another to get a mouthful.


    Mr. Yoshizawa says one fear is running out of feed. With the oversized herd having already grazed his pastureland to stubble, he now relies on contributions of feed and money. Another worry is what living amid the contamination is doing to the cows, and to him.


    A checkup soon after the accident showed high levels of radioactive cesium in his body, though he said the number had decreased over the last two years. He tries to keep his contamination as low as possible by using filtered water and buying food on trips out of the area.


    The cows, however, are constantly ingesting radioactive materials that remain in the soil and grass; since most of the donated feed he receives is from the region, it, too, is contaminated.


    Ten of the cows have developed small white spots on their heads and flanks that he thinks are a result of exposure to radiation. Experts said they had never seen such spots before, but they said other causes were also possible, including a fungal infection from the overcrowding.


    Mr. Yoshizawa has attracted a small following of supporters, but has his critics, too, who say he is keeping the animals alive in less than humane conditions in order to make a political point.


    “Looking at the over-concentration of animals, I personally don’t think this is very humanitarian,” said Manabu Fukumoto, a pathologist at the Institute of Development, Aging and Cancer at Tohoku University who studied the white spots.


    Mr. Yoshizawa notes wryly that the cows are living much longer than they would have if they had been led off to slaughter.


    For now, the local authorities have come up with a very Japanese solution to Mr. Yoshizawa’s defiance: turning a blind eye. Town officials in Namie deny knowledge of him or anyone else living inside the evacuation zone — despite the fact that they have restored electricity and telephone service to the ranch.


    Mr. Yoshizawa does not make himself easy to ignore. He continues to appear in Japanese news media, maintains a blog with a live webcam of the ranch and holds occasional one-man protests in front of the headquarters of the plant’s operator, Tokyo Electric Power Co.


    “Not all Japanese are passive,” Mr. Yoshizawa said. “My cows and I will show that there is still a chance for change.”


    http://www.nytimes.com/2014/01/12/wo...s.html?hp&_r=0
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    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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    This invited post is authored by Chris Mah, a Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History researcher. Chris is one of the world’s leading experts on starfish and echinoderms in general. He created and writes for Echinoblog, a one stop reading place for everything echinoderm. You can find him at Twitter at @echinoblog.

    In September 2013, I broke the story about a mass sunflower starfish (Pycnopodia helianthoides) die-off in British Columbia. This developed into further accounts of Starfish Wasting ‘disease’ which is now recognized as “Starfish Wasting Syndrome” (because the nature of the causative agent is unknown) and since been reported from California and now Washington state.

    The “disease” causes white lesions and tissue necrosis (death and decomposition), eventually resulting in arm loss and overall body collapse (the “wasting” part of the disease’s name). The disease has been observed in multiple starfish species but seems to have been noticed most heavily in sunflower starfish (Pycnopodia helianthoides) and ochre stars (Pisaster ochraceus).

    Some have become concerned that there is a direct influence from Fukushima. Much of this seems unlikely. Deep-Sea News (among many other sources) have presented excellent reviews of data that can help the rational person make sense from some of the confusing deluge of misinformation.


    Here, I continue this theme. Addressing a concern that has been brought up by many. But really, three simple observations discount any direct relationship….


    1. Starfish Wasting Disease/Syndrome (SWD/SWS) pre-Dates Fukushima by 3 to 15 years. This is probably the most self-evident of reasons. One of the earliest accounts of starfish wasting disease was recorded from Southern California (Channel Islands) in 1997 (pdf). The account of SWS in British Columbia was first documented by Bates et al. in 2009, and their data was collected in 2008. Fukushima? March 2011.
    2. Starfish Wasting Syndrome Occurs on the East Coast as well as the Pacific. Many of the accounts alleging a Fukushima connection to Starfish Wasting Syndrome forget that there are also accounts of SWS on the east coast of the United States affecting the asteriid Asterias rubens. There is no evidence (or apparent mechanism) for Fukushima radiation to have reached the east coast and therefore the Fukushima idea is again not supported.
    3. No other life in these regions seems to have been affected. If we watch the original British Columbia Pycnopodia die-off videos, and the later Washington state die-off vidoes, one cannot help but notice that other than the starfish, EVERYTHING else remains alive. Fish. Seaweed, encrusting animals. etc.

    the WA video
    A survey of Washington state released recently. Note the sea anemones, algae, and crabs. All in apparent good health.
    Viewing ANY of the pictures or videos from other accounts shows that only the sea stars are affected. If there were waves of Fukushima radiation pouring onto the coast-and “melting” all the starfish as some folks would suggest, EVERYTHING would be dead. Not just the sea stars. Note also that all the divers involved in these surveys have reported NO ill effects.
    Unfortunately, we have no data on the actual agent that causes SWS. Within the grand realm of possibility there is always a (slim?) possibility there is a connection with Fukushima, but nothing we’ve seen gives us any reason to think that.
    More Likely Reasons?
    Speculation has suggested bacterial or viral sources. But invertebrate diseases can be complicated. The disease only seems to affect sea stars. Nothing else. This implies a biological cause with a very specific relationship. Possibly a bacteria or virus. But just as possibly some other type of infection resulting from a protist or fungi?
    It also seems possible that it could be a disease similar to coral bleaching, where subcuticular bacteria of sea stars (as documented here) might be affected adversely. Or perhaps a combination? In conjunction with some environmental change, such as water temperature? The original series of papers by Amanda Bates indicated there was an association of the diseae with water temperature.
    Our study of this event has just begun. Ongoing data collection and research have started. We shall see where it takes us…

    Share the post "Three Reasons Why Fukushima Radiation Has Nothing to Do with Starfish Wasting Syndrome"

    http://deepseanews.com/2013/12/three...ting-syndrome/
    Last edited by JohnDoe2; 01-12-2014 at 12:58 AM.
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    Senior Member kathyet2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kathyet2 View Post
    WND

    Fukushima releases mysterious steam plume
    Uncontrolled site being cleaned up by homeless hired to squelch radioactive dangers


    Fukushima releases mysterious steam plume
    wnd.com
    A Free Press For A Free People Since 1997


    WND EXCLUSIVE

    Fukushima releases mysterious steam plume

    Uncontrolled site being cleaned up by homeless hired to squelch radioactive dangers

    Published: 18 hours ago


    The bad news from Fukushima seems to keep coming.
    New reports say a mysterious steam plume is emanating from the Japanese power plant crippled in the 2011 tsunami. While TEPCO, the utility that owns the plant, has confirmed the presence of a steam plume coming from what looks like the fifth floor of the building, the source of the plume is unknown.
    What is being viewed seems to be a steam release coming from the hot rubble of the structure.
    Fairewinds Energy Education, an organization that tracks nuclear energy issues, posted a
    statement on its website today saying the reactor is not going to explode. The statement noted that the plant is in the Northern Hemisphere, where it is winter, and the lower air temperature is making the steam more visible.
    But there are three major issues with the Fukushima cleanup operation that are of concern:

    1. Three reactor cores are not visible and their disposition is unknown.
    2. Radioactive water has been leaking from the plant in larger quantities than has been reported.
    3. Eleven thousand spent nuclear fuel rods from all six reactors in the complex need to be removed for inspection and final disposition. A percentage of the fuel rods are located in the exposed reactors, and removing the rods, which are emanating lethal levels of radiation and are at tens of thousands of degrees in temperature, will be particularly dangerous.

    The latest developments have added to the sense of urgency to not only stop the release of radiation into the environment, but also determine just how much damage is being done to the environment and what actions should be taken to reduce the impact of the disaster.
    The worlds’ worst nuclear crisis in 25 years was set off at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant in March 2011 by a massive earthquake and tsunami that killed nearly 20,000 people.
    Immediately after the disaster hit, Japan implemented the first stage of its emergency response plan. The government ordered the immediate evacuation of all persons who were within a 12-mile radius of the complex. For those within a 12- to 18-mile radius, residents were requested to “shelter in place,” staying inside with all the doors and windows closed.
    A controversy erupted shortly after the orders came down. U.S. Ambassador to Japan John V. Roos issued a recommendation based on Nuclear Regulatory Council (NRC) guidelines that people living within a 50-mile radius evacuate the area. The recommendation prompted Japan to complain that the U.S. was fear-mongering.
    Since the incident, TEPCO implemented several mitigation strategies to clean up the mess.
    The latest, controversial strategy is to employ the homeless to clear away the rubble to give inspectors a clearer view of the situation they are facing.
    The cleanup, said to be the worst job in Japan, is falling behind schedule due to a lack of oversight and a shortage of workers. TEPCO is trying to make up for lost time by casting a large net for workers, now recruiting the homeless for the dangerous job. Men like Seiji Sasa are hunting the Sendai Station in Northern Japan looking for people to work for minimum wage to go through the rubble. Sendai has emerged as an unofficial center for hiring the homeless for low-skilled, low-wage jobs.
    The quality of the cleanup job has been called into question not only because of the quality of workforce but also because many of the subcontractors recruited for the job have alleged ties to Japan’s organized crime syndicate, the Yakusa.

    Complaints have emerged from workers that they are not being paid and are essentially in a state of slavery to their employer. The workers are charged room and board during their stay on site, and their wages sometimes don’t cover the cost of their living expenses.
    “I don’t ask questions; that’s not my job,” Sasa said in an interview with Reuters. “I just find people and send them to work. I send them and get money in exchange. That’s it. I don’t get involved in what happens after that.”
    While the cleanup has had its problems, other countries are trying to determine the extent of the radiation coming from the plant and the effects it is having on their respective landscapes.
    Following the disaster in Fukushima, most countries with nuclear power plants issued statements expressing the need for a complete review of safety procedures to prevent a similar meltdown.
    For its part, the United States ordered a review of its nuclear plants. As a result, several plants have been shut down following determinations that it was too costly to implement the required design and operational improvements.
    To date, five nuclear reactors are being built in the United States, in Georgia, South Carolina and Tennessee. But in the past year, utilities have permanently shut down four others and plan to take a fifth out of service next year. Two other planned projects have been shelved. Part of the reason for the shutdowns and shelving new plants, however, is a combination of a weak demand due to a slowing economy and also to the increased gas production due to new production techniques.
    Japan issued orders to shut down all 50 of its nuclear plants pending review, but the process of getting approval to restart the units is already under way. Authorities say the process is being done deliberately and is expected to take some years to complete.
    Restarting the reactors is a critical strategic decision for Japanese Prime Minister Abe’s government as the country’s reactors had provided approximately 30 percent of its electricity and was expected to increase to at least 40 percent by 2017. Post-Fukushima, that figure is expected to be only 20 percent. It could have severe implications for a country that imports 84 percent of its energy.
    The immediate replacement for nuclear power in Japan is oil. Some in the Abe government are particularly concerned, because of current tense relationship with China over the disputed Senkaku Islands (known to the Chinese as the Diaoyu Islands). If relations worsen, a blockade of oil to the Home Islands would have a severe impact on Japan’s economy. Thus, Japan is pushing to get as many nuclear plants on line as possible.
    Other countries have taken more radical steps than Japan.
    Immediately following the explosions in Fukushima, Switzerland suspended the application for all new plants seeking construction permits. Two months later, in a move that was called “hasty and premature,” the Swiss government announced plans to phase out all five of its nuclear reactors by 2034 at a cost of $2.5 billion to $4.4 billion. The government also put a stop to any new construction and permitting of new plants.
    Environmental organizations have judged that the 2034 closure date is far too long to operate the existing plants. The Mühleberg plant near the city Bern is an identical reactor type to Fukushima-1, and nearly all reactors are over 30 years old.
    This decision will mean that Switzerland will have to find alternatives to make up for 40 percent of its energy usage. They are anticipating that the deficit can be made up with a combination of hydroelectric energy, natural gas, and biofuels. However, getting these alternative fuel sources to make up the 40 percent deficit is problematic.
    Plans for more nuclear plants in Italy stalled when a plan put forward by then-Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi to generate a quarter of Italy’s electricity was defeated in referendum when over 90 percent of the voters opposed it.
    More recently, Norwegian life insurance company KLP said it has sold its shares in TEPCO due to the latter’s handling of the Fukushima disaster.
    “Fukushima is the reason. It is not the accident itself, but it is the evaluation of the whole situation, both with the risk assessment before the accident and due to the current situation. Almost three years have passed and the situation is still not under control. And there is a still a risk for further radioactive pollution at Fukushima,” said Heidi Finskas, a financial analyst for KLP.
    Despite the halt to the use of nuclear power in several countries post-Fukushima, the global growth of nuclear power is predicted to continue, with 69 nuclear power reactors currently under construction around the world, particularly in hydrocarbon-poor Asia, where power demand continues to surge.
    While among Asian nations, Japan in the 1960s was the first to adopt nuclear power, between 1980 and 2012 nuclear capacity in Asia rose nearly 250 percent, led primarily by South Korea, Japan and India, with China over the past decade also embracing nuclear power.
    The trend is predicted to continue. According to the United States Energy Information Agency (EIA), nuclear power is among the world’s fastest-growing energy source, increasing by 2.5 percent every year
    While the U.S. has not put a halt to its nuclear power generation program, officials are very concerned about the clean-up efforts at Fukushima and its impact on the nuclear power industry.
    After visiting the plant, U.S. Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz said in a statement: “As Japan continues to chart its sovereign path forward on the cleanup at the Fukushima site and works to determine the future of their energy economy, the United States stands ready to continue assisting our partners in this daunting yet indispensable task. The United States and Japan created the Bilateral Commission to strengthen our strategic and practical engagement on civil nuclear R&D, Fukushima cleanup, emergency response, nuclear safety regulatory matters, and nuclear security and nonproliferation, and we look forward to the commission meeting next week in Washington, D.C.”
    There are those who believe that the moves by the U.S. and Japan have not been enough.
    Gregory Jaczko, a former nuclear safety chief with the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, has accused Japan of being too slow to respond to radioactive water leaks at the facility.
    “After massive amounts of water were used to cool the plant’s molten reactors it became clear that leaks were only a matter of time,” Jaczko told reporters in September. “Both U.S. and Japanese officials knew that and it’s unclear why it has taken Japan so long to tackle the problem.”
    Even while the U.S. is expressing confidence in the cleanup efforts, other government moves are afoot that seem to indicate that the government is not as confident as public statements would have one believe.
    On Dec. 6, a request for quote was posted on the government’s Federal Business Opportunities website for “potassium iodide tablet, 65mg, unit dose package of 20s; 700,000 packages (of 20s).”
    The tablets are to be delivered no later than Feb. 1.
    Another item of interest in the quote is the fact that delivery of the tablets is destined for Perry Point, Md., a federal government medical supply and pharmaceutical center.
    The Nuclear Regulatory Commission states on its website: “Potassium iodide is a special kind of protective measure in that it offers very specialized protection. Potassium iodide protects the thyroid gland against internal uptake of radioiodines that may be released in the unlikely event of a nuclear reactor accident.”
    The health Physics Society states on its website that potassium iodide [KI] can only provide protection for the thyroid gland from an intake of radioiodine. It goes on to state that “the only possible sources of large radioiodine releases are from a nuclear weapons denotation and a catastrophic accident in an operating nuclear reactor.”
    “Therefore, KI has no protective value from a ‘dirty bomb’ or a dispersion of spent nuclear fuel.”
    Potassium iodide only protects the thyroid in humans before they are exposed to radioactive iodine. The iodide ties up sites inside the organ and does not allow the irradiated iodine to accumulate. If the person is already exposed to radioactive iodine, the potassium salt is not effective.
    KI would be of little help if the radiation released from Fukushima, consisting of radioactive cesium, would makes its way into the U.S. drinking water or food supply.
    While potassium iodide will not protect against radioactive cesium, such as what is being found in the water coming off of Fukushima, a compound called “Persian Blue” will.
    Persian blue (Fe7(CN)1 is a dark blue pigment that is usually used for staining cells in medical research. It also is used as an antidote for heavy metal poisoning, in this case, for cesium and thallium poisoning.
    There are questions as to why there is a call for potassium iodide at this time. Some think that it may be tied to the fact that 71 U.S. sailors who helped during the initial Fukushima relief efforts sued the Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO) after they returned with thyroid cancer, leukemia and brain tumors as a result of being exposed to radiation at 300 times the safe level. Their original lawsuit was dismissed, but the sailors are now refiling their petition.
    There is the belief that the government may be stockpiling potassium iodide (KI) to give to U.S. military personnel and others in the Fukushima prefecture area in case there is another series of explosions in an operating reactor.
    Whether the KI is being purchased to protect persons from a threat that has not been disclosed or is being bought just to replenish expired stock is hard to tell. Such is the case when the full story is not being given.
    TEPCO has been caught repeatedly misrepresenting the facts about the extent of the damage to the reactor complex and the environment in general. The company’s continual misleading statements also makes some think that, despite public pronouncements, extra precautions need to be taken beyond what is being openly recommended.
    The lack of candor being exhibited by TEPCO and the Japanese and other foreign governments prompts the question, “What else are they not telling us?”

    Read more at http://www.wnd.com/2014/01/fukushima...P6mbGRc3AZF.99

    Since April has this link put into sticky I will now post on this link instead, and will bring my other links here. Hopefully it will be easier to read and follow the information on Fukishima...

    Gunderson First to say Fukishima worse than Chernobyl
    Fukushima worse than Chernobly

    Dr Rima Radiation Basics 1 & 2
    Dr Rima "Radiation Basics part 1 and 2" Videos

    Nuclear Facility Ticking Time Bomb
    Nuclear Facility is a "Ticking Time Bomb"


    Fukishima scare stories!!!!!! Really.... Believe what you want there is more evidence out there if you care to look, but those who want to bury thier head in the sand can do so...for those who don't April and I have a big sticky thread we combined it is best if you all make up your own mind....
    HAPPY2BME likes this.
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  6. #6
    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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    Fukushima Daiichi Unit 3 is not going to explode

    Posted On: Jan 1, 2014

    Previous PostThe Atomic SailorsNext PostShould I Take Radiation Protection Pills?

    Steam heat? What is happening at Fukushima Daiichi?

    Beginning on Monday December 30, 2013, the Internet has been flooded with conjecture claiming that Fukushima Daiichi Unit 3 is ready to explode. Fairewinds Energy Education has been inundated with questions about the very visible steam emanating from Fukushima Daiichi Unit 3. Our research, and discussions with other scientists, confirms that what we are seeing is a phenomenon that has been occurring at the Daiichi site since the March 2011 accident.

    It is winter and it is cold through out much of the northern hemisphere. Hot water vapor has been released daily by each of the four Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plants since the accident. We believe that is one of the reasons TEPCO placed covers over Daiichi 4 and 1. Sometimes the steam [hot water vapor] is visible and sometimes it is not. If you have been outside on a cold winter day, you have personally experienced that phenomenon when you see the breath you exhale form a cloud in the cold air. The technical explanation is that hot water vapor becomes visible when it comes in contact with cold air and condenses. During the winter months in the Fukushima Prefecture, the sea air is cold and moist, thus forming the ideal conditions to see the released steam.

    Why is there still steam coming from the plants especially since TEPCO says that they are in cold shutdown? As we at Fairewinds have discussed in our many videos, podcasts, and reports, radioactive rubble (fission products) was left in each unit following the triple meltdowns. While the plants are shutdown in nuke speak, there is no method of achieving cold shut down in any nuclear reactor. While the reactor can stop generating the actual nuclear chain reaction, the atoms left over from the original nuclear chain reaction continue to give off heat that is called the decay of the radioactive rubble (fission products). The heat from this ongoing decay of radioactive rubble is constantly releasing moisture (steam) and radioactive products into the environment. The radioactive decay is gradually slowing down, as fission products decay away. The cold moist winter air at this time of year is making steam from the ongoing decay easily visible.

    How much radiation is escaping? When Unit 3 was operating, it was producing more than 2,000 megawatts of heat from the nuclear fission process (chain reaction in the reactor). Immediately after the earthquake and tsunami, it shut down and the chain reaction stopped, but Unit 3 was still producing about 160 megawatts of decay heat. Now, 30 months later, it is still producing slightly less than 1 megawatt (one million watts) of decay heat.

    What does that figure mean; is it an inconsequential amount? 1 megawatt of decay heat is a lot of heat even today, and it is creating radioactive steam, but it is not a new phenomenon. These hot radioactive releases [not physically hot, but radioactive hot – meaning they contain radioactive fission products] have occurring for the entire 33 months following the triple meltdown. The difference now is that the only time we visibly notice these ongoing releases is on the cold days with atmospheric conditions cold enough to condense hot vapor into steam.

    Fairewinds Energy Education would like to thank our viewers and listeners for following our work and supporting our work and sending it important questions like this one. We will continue to keep you informed.


    http://fairewinds.org/demystifying/f...-going-explode
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    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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    1. snopes.com: Fukushima Emergency

      www.snopes.com › HomeFauxtographyTechnology

      Jan 5, 2014 - Japan's nuclear watchdog has now declared the leak of radioactive water from ... nuclear meltdowns and releases of radioactive materials from the ... (Similar "false image" fears were spurred by the Internet circulation of a ...
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    More Fukushima Scaremongering Debunked

    Posted on October 28, 2013 by Mike Rothschild

    Another day brings another science-free but hysteria-packed screed of terror about how radiation from the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Plant incident will bathe all of us in torrents of cesium-soaked death. A few months ago, I took on one of these rambles, Gary Stamper’s not at all melodramatic “At the very least, your days of eating Pacific Ocean fish are over” and determined that nothing of the sort is even close to true, with the evidence behind it either willfully misinterpreted or simply incorrect.


    Now it’s time to get the knives out for a newer piece of Fukushima scaremongering, published just over a week ago on “Activist Post.” While it’s just as wrong and hysterical as Stamper’s piece, it’s also just as popular, with 28,000 shares on Facebook already. It’s sad that far more people are drawn in by crap than in the debunking of said crap, but that doesn’t mean we stop spreading the correct message: that the radiation released by Fukushima, while serious enough to be cleaned up and monitored, is having a negligible effect on everyone but the unfortunate people living in that area.
    28 Signs That The West Coast Is Being Absolutely Fried With Nuclear Radiation From Fukushima
    And we’re off to the races: specifically, the Gish Gallop, a fallacious debating technique that involves overwhelming your opponent with information, without any regard for its accuracy. Also, I’d like to know what “absolutely fried” means. Is it measurable? Is there a unit that denotes “absolutely fried” as opposed to “mostly fried” or “somewhat fried?” How many AF’s (absolutely frieds) does the radiation from Fukushima contain? And what’s a survivable dose of AF’s? I have many questions about the science underlying this clearly scientific measuring tool.
    Michael Snyder
    Activist Post
    According to his blurb on Activist Post, Michael Snyder is a former Washington D.C. attorney who now publishes The Truth. His new thriller entitled “The Beginning Of The End” is now available on Amazon.com.

    Snyder’s site appears to be some kind of Christian doomsday prepper clearinghouse, and his novel is about (surprise) the economic collapse of America. So if you’re looking for a way to incorporate hoarding precious metals into your fellowshipping, Snyder is your man. None of this is a knock against him, but he does seem to have a vested interest in trying to convince you the world is about to end. Spoiler alert: it’s not.
    The map below comes from the Nuclear Emergency Tracking Center. It shows that radiation levels at radiation monitoring stations all over the country are elevated. As you will notice, this is particularly true along the west coast of the United States.


    The name “Nuclear Emergency Tracking Center” sounds a lot like a government regulatory body. It’s so incredibly the opposite of that. The website is a slapped together map of the supposed radiation levels at nuclear sites around the world. It’s got no indication where it’s getting its information or what it means, but it does have a fee based service that will alert you to radiation spikes anywhere in the world. And Bible quotes.
    Every single day, 300 tons of radioactive water from Fukushima enters the Pacific Ocean. That means that the total amount of radioactive material released from Fukushima is constantly increasing, and it is steadily building up in our food chain.
    I already covered this in the Stamper piece, and why it seems much worse than it actually is. The short of it is that 300 tons of radioactive water is literally a drop in the bucket compared to the 187 quintillion gallons that make up the Pacific Ocean. Whatever radioactivity is in that water will be diluted to the point of harmlessness.
    […]
    We are talking about a nuclear disaster that is absolutely unprecedented, and it is constantly getting worse.
    It’s not unprecedented. Chernobyl remains the worst nuclear disaster in human history, much worse in virtually every measurable way than Fukushima.

    The following are 28 signs that the west coast of North America is being absolutely fried with nuclear radiation from Fukushima…
    Bring it, list. Bring it.
    1. Polar bears, seals and walruses along the Alaska coastline are suffering from fur loss and open sores…
    Stamper referenced the same article that Snyder does. And if I may be so bold as to quote myself: “The article Stamper links to specifically says ‘Reuters noted that preliminary studies do not support a theory that the disease is due to contamination from the tsunami-wrecked Fukushima nuclear plant in Japan.‘”

    Citing an article that specifically refutes the point you’re trying to make is not the way to make that point.
    2. There is an epidemic of sea lion deaths along the California coastline…
    There is an epidemic of sea lion deaths along the west coast, happening for as-yet unknown reasons. But it’s sea lion PUPS dying, not sea lions as a whole. Radiation does not distinguish whether an animal is young or old, so it’s highly unlikely, if not impossible, that Fukushima has anything to do with this.
    3. Along the Pacific coast of Canada and the Alaska coastline, the population of sockeye salmon is at a historic low. Many are blaming Fukushima.
    And they would be wrong. Sockeye salmon stocks are low in Canada’s Fraser Basin, with experts in the field researching a number of causes for it. But it’s a decline that began in 1992, long before Fukushima was scaring the crap out of people.
    4. Something is causing fish all along the west coast of Canada to bleed from their gills, bellies and eyeballs.
    Just as “many” does not equal “people who understand this stuff,” “something” does not equal “Fukushima.” The link Snyder sites doesn’t even talk about “fish all along the west coast of Canada.” It mentions one school of herring found to be mysteriously bleeding. The cause of this is unknown right now, but even the biologist who discovered the herring isn’t blaming Fukushima – and she discovered them before the plume of radiation would have reached Canada.
    5. A vast field of radioactive debris from Fukushima that is approximately the size of California has crossed the Pacific Ocean and is starting to collide with the west coast.
    I don’t know where the “size of California” bit comes from, and I can’t find any reputable source to back it up. There is a large field of debris from the post-earthquake tsunami that will hit the west coast, but interestingly, the link Snyder cites has another link to a BBC article that says it won’t happen until March, 2014. And the debris is not likely to have anything more than traces of radioactivity.
    6. It is being projected that the radioactivity of coastal waters off the U.S. west coast could double over the next five to six years.
    True, and nothing to be concerned about, given how low the current radioactivity level of the west coast is. To quote Dr. Claus Boning from the Helmholtz Centre for Ocean Research in Kiel, Germany: “The levels of radiation that hit the US coast will be small relative to the levels released by Fukushima. [...] But we cannot estimate accurately what those levels will be because we do not know for certain what was released by Fukushima.”
    7. Experts have found very high levels of cesium-137 in plankton living in the waters of the Pacific Ocean between Hawaii and the west coast.
    This is entirely expected and in keeping with a radioactive leak. The amount of radioactivity in the plankton will continue to decay as it moves up the food chain, staying well within Japan’s newly-raised acceptable levels of becquerels per kilogram of foodstuffs.
    8. One test in California found that 15 out of 15 bluefin tuna were contaminated with radiation from Fukushima.
    Yet another link Snyder cited without actually reading. It references a CNN article that states: “Tissue samples taken from 15 bluefin caught in August, five months after the meltdowns at Fukushima Daiichi, all contained reactor byproducts cesium-134 and cesium-137 at levels that produced radiation about 3% higher than natural background sources.” (Emphasis mine)
    A 3% increase in radiation is negligible. It’s around the same amount of additional exposure you get flying in a plane, or sleeping next to someone. If that worries you, then it’s time for separate bedrooms.
    9. Back in 2012, the Vancouver Sun reported that cesium-137 was being found in a very high percentage of the fish that Japan was selling to Canada…
    Again, perfectly within expectations. It’s why Japan has since banned the selling of seafood from the Fukushima area.
    10. Canadian authorities are finding extremely high levels of nuclear radiation in certain fish samples…
    See #9. Making the same point over and over doesn’t magically make it more correct.
    11. Some experts believe that we could see very high levels of cancer along the west coast just from people eating contaminated fish…
    There is absolutely no compelling evidence to support this assertion, and a great deal of solid scientific research that refutes it.
    Serious, no foolin’ science.

    12. BBC News recently reported that radiation levels around Fukushima are “18 times higher” than previously believed.
    Entirely possible. Also totally out of context, backed up by nothing and not relevant at all to the west coast of North America.
    13. An EU-funded study concluded that Fukushima released up to 210 quadrillion becquerels of cesium-137 into the atmosphere.
    What does this mean? Is that a lot? What’s the context? How long will it take to spread and to dissipate? Is this unacceptably high? Has it been confirmed by other studies? Don’t ask Snyder, because he only will give you a big scary number, not what the number means.
    14. Atmospheric radiation from Fukushima reached the west coast of the United States within a few days back in 2011.
    True and irrelevant. Small amounts of atmospheric radiation reached the west coast shortly after the disaster. It had no effect on the people or sea life in the area.
    15. At this point, 300 tons of contaminated water is pouring into the Pacific Ocean from Fukushima every single day.
    Say this twice, ten times, a thousand times. It will never, never mean something other than what it means.
    16. A senior researcher of marine chemistry at the Japan Meteorological Agency’s Meteorological Research Institute says that “30 billion becquerels of radioactive cesium and 30 billion becquerels of radioactive strontium” are being released into the Pacific Ocean from Fukushima every single day.
    17. According to Tepco, a total of somewhere between 20 trillion and 40 trillion becquerels of radioactive tritium have gotten into the Pacific Ocean since the Fukushima disaster first began.
    18. According to a professor at Tokyo University, 3 gigabecquerels of cesium-137 are flowing into the port at Fukushima Daiichi every single day.
    Three more claims that lack any kind of context to put them into perspective. And again, the vastness of the Pacific Ocean will render the radiation in these terrifying-sounding numbers diluted well past the point of danger.
    19. It has been estimated that up to 100 times as much nuclear radiation has been released into the ocean from Fukushima than was released during the entire Chernobyl disaster.
    What the article Snyder cites actually says is: “In October, a U.S. study – co-authored by oceanographer Ken Buesseler, a senior scientist at the non-profit Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution in Woods Hole, Massachusetts – reported Fukushima caused history’s biggest-ever release of radiation into the ocean – 10 to 100 times more than the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear catastrophe.”
    First, this a number that actually makes quite a bit of sense, given that Fukushima took place on the Pacific Ocean, and Chernobyl took place in the middle of Ukraine, far from any ocean.
    Furthermore, in an FAQ on the Woods Hole website, Buesseler himself dismisses the hysterical claims about the radiation from Fukushima. If the person who actually gave the quote isn’t worried about it, why on earth should you be?
    20. One recent study concluded that a very large plume of cesium-137 from the Fukushima disaster will start flowing into U.S. coastal waters early next year…
    Will start flowing? WILL? Wait, I thought we were being Absolutely Fried!!! I demand an explanation for this inconsistency!
    Since that’s not likely to come this decade, I’ll say this is yet more willful misinterpretation disseminated by Gary Stamper and carried on by Michael Snyder. Watch the clip from the Helmholtz Centre study. Get the context behind what this actually means. Then see if you’re still afraid. You probably won’t be.
    21. It is being projected that significant levels of cesium-137 will reach every corner of the Pacific Ocean by the year 2020.
    See #20. Then hit your head against the wall and weep for the scientific illiteracy of those who twist these facts into hysteria.
    22. It is being projected that the entire Pacific Ocean will soon “have cesium levels 5 to 10 times higher” than what we witnessed during the era of heavy atomic bomb testing in the Pacific many decades ago.
    This baseless, out-of-context and unsupported claim comes from Arnie Gundersen, a former engineer turned anti-nuclear activist. Take it with several thousand grains of salt.
    23. The immense amounts of nuclear radiation getting into the water in the Pacific Ocean has caused environmental activist Joe Martino to issue the following warning…Your days of eating Pacific Ocean fish are over.
    We’ve now hit an irony implosion of epic proportions. I don’t know who Joe Martino is, but he didn’t originate the ridiculous claim that “your days of eating Pacific Ocean fish are over.” Gary Stamper did. For a blog post spewing purported scientific facts, not getting this simple attribution right is, frankly, a little embarrassing.
    24. The Iodine-131, Cesium-137 and Strontium-90 that are constantly coming from Fukushima are going to affect the health of those living the the northern hemisphere for a very, very long time. Just consider what Harvey Wasserman had to say about this…
    Harvey Wasserman is another anti-nuclear activist with a vested interest in trying to make Fukushima seem as horrific as humanly possible. He is also, quite notably, not a scientist nor someone with any background in how radiation works. The piece he wrote that Snyder used as proof has no scientific citations of any kind.
    25. According to a recent Planet Infowars report, the California coastline is being transformed into “a dead zone”…
    I can’t even.
    26. A study conducted last year came to the conclusion that radiation from the Fukushima nuclear disaster could negatively affect human life along the west coast of North America from Mexico to Alaska “for decades”.
    This is a misinterpretation (surprise!) of the findings of a study from the open access journal Chinese Science Bulletin. Here’s what it actually says (in section 3.3): “The radioactive isotope [cesium-137] with a half-life of 30.1 years, can negatively affect human life for decades, so the transport and diffusion process of [cesium-137] should raise concern.”
    The study is right, this should raise concern. This is why scientists study and monitor these things. But “concern” does not equal “panic.” The overall findings of the study agree completely with the Helmholtz Centre study: that cesium-137 levels will increase as the radioactive plume spreads, and then decrease as it dissipates.
    27. According to the Wall Street Journal, it is being projected that the cleanup of Fukushima could take up to 40 years to complete.
    This is TEPCO’s projection of how long the decommissioning of Fukushima will take. How it equates to “the west coast is being absolutely fried by radiation” is completely beyond me.
    28. Yale Professor Charles Perrow is warning that if the cleanup of Fukushima is not handled with 100% precision that humanity could be threatened “for thousands of years”…
    The Huffington Post is well known for the dubiousness of its scientific claims. That doesn’t make this particular claim wrong, but it does diminish its authority somewhat. Perrow himself is a sociology professor, has no background in nuclear science, and gives no evidence to support his claim that botching the Fukushima cleanup will threaten us for eons to come. He simply says it, then goes on at length about the history of nuclear accidents.
    Are you starting to understand why so many people are so deeply concerned about what is going on at Fukushima?
    I understand it completely. It is something to be concerned about – which is why scientists and researchers, people who do this kind of thing for a living, are testing and researching what kind of impact the incident is actually having. Concern does not mean panic. It certainly doesn’t mean spreading hysteria-inducing claims around the internet with no thought given to how true they are – or if they’re true at all.

    Edited to add: I’ve written a third v olume of skeptical examinations of claims about the Fukushima disaster, including the apocalyptic hysteria regarding the removal of fuel rods.


    http://skeptoid.com/blog/2013/10/28/...ring-debunked/
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    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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    Radioactive Fukushima claims live on despite scientific findings

    Did you somehow miss the giant squid in Santa Monica? (Lightly Braised Turnip)

    By Russ Parsons
    January 13, 2014, 12:15 p.m.

    Is it possible that all life in the Pacific Ocean is on the verge of being wiped out but that knowledge is being kept from you by an unholy alliance of international governments, corporations and a compliant news media?

    No. But that doesn’t stop people from believing it. Just when it seemed those scary Facebook posts had gone away, they came back again last week.


    The gist of the arguments is that the spill of radioactive cooling water at Japan's Fukushima Daiichi nuclear reactor following the 2011 earthquake and tsunami is spreading across the Pacific, annihilating everything in its path.


    There were the oldie but goodies: “Holy Fukushima – Radiation From Japan Is Already Killing North Americans” (that’s the one with the “Radioactive Impact Map” that actually only shows the variation in wave height during the tsunami) and "28 Signs That the West Coast Is Being Absolutely Fried With Nuclear Radiation From Fukushima” (proving that nothing – not even the end of the world – is safe from being made into a listicle).


    And then there was a new one, “Radioactive Gigantism Strikes California”, claiming that a giant squid (about the size of a small whale) had washed ashore in Santa Monica. It seemed to have been taken seriously, despite the fact that this pretty obviously came from a satirical news site ala the Onion
    (does Lightly Braised Turnip sound like a trustworthy source of information?).


    But it probably does say something when the satirical news story sounds more legitimate than the purported factual ones.


    As my colleague Tony Barboza wrote, “Those assertions are false and the concerns largely unfounded, scientists and government officials said last week, because Fukushima radionuclides in ocean water and marine life are at trace levels and declining — so low that they are trivial compared with what already exists in nature.”


    The California Department of Public Health declared flatly: “There is no public health risk at California beaches due to radioactivity related to events at Fukushima.”


    Not that that would convince the believers because, of course, that’s just what the conspirators would say. “Preventing panic is item number one on authorities' lists, above even public safety,” commented one Chaya Posts.


    If you’re looking for honest, factual information on the effect of the Fukushima reactor spill, there are a couple of very good, reliable sources to check. I’ve found Deep Sea News to be very good. And of course the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute is authoritative, though the website doesn’t seem to have been updated recently. Perhaps because there is nothing new to report, Facebook posts notwithstanding.


    http://www.latimes.com/food/dailydis...#ixzz2qQXxNjf2
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    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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    Dire Warnings and Melting Starfish: Fukushima Fearmongering, Volume 3


    Posted on November 25, 2013 by Mike Rothschild

    This is the third in a series of pieces debunking the scaremongering and hysteria regarding the disaster at the Fukushima nuclear plant.

    I believe the anxiety about the meltdown and its aftermath comes from a mix of negativity toward nuclear power, hostility toward plant operators TEPCO (which is well-deserved in most cases), a lack of knowledge about basic science, distrust of experts (who are seen as dishonest shills) and the common habit of sharing social content that’s driven by strong negative emotions – often without understanding it, and sometimes without even reading it.

    Using links to good science and some basic concepts in logic, I’ve demolished two of the most prominent lies about Fukushima already, one that Pacific Ocean fish is unsafe to eat and the other that the West Coast is being “absolutely fried” by radiation from the disaster. This time, I’m not going to debunk one single post, but address a grab bag of myths, exaggerations and scaremongering racing around social media. Some of it you’ve probably seen many times, and some of it might be brand new, but all of it needs to be dealt with.

    CLAIM: The ocean is broken.
    This is the title of an October article from Australia’s Newcastle Herald, chronicling the journey of Ivan Macfadyen, a yachtsman who retraced a voyage between Melbourne and Osaka, and ten years later found the Pacific Ocean virtually devoid of life but teaming with floating trash. With its attention-grabbing title and compelling content, it went viral, with over half a million views in three days. People connected the dots and linked the dead, garbage-filled ocean that Macfadyen encountered on his trip to Fukushima, and the piece has been used as part of the exaggerated story since then.


    Debris from the tsunami. Coming soon to a beach near you. (Reuters)

    But the link between the two doesn’t appear to exist. As the ocean conservation blog Upwell points out, the story in the Newcastle Herald isn’t a hard science piece, and has no citations or links to relevant research. It’s not meant to. It’s a human interest story, the relaying of a personal anecdote, and rooted in emotion. It’s full of phrases like “nauseous horror” and “astounding volumes” – compelling writing, but not science. The story is also not at all about the nuclear plant, but the damage done from overfishing and plastic pollution. It doesn’t even mention Fukushima by name. As such, it’s worth reading, but not useful for any discussion about the meltdown.


    CLAIM: David Suzuki’s Dire Warning.
    The removal of the spent fuel rods from Fukushima could have apocalyptic consequences if done incorrectly, warn activists around the world. Chief among them is David Suzuki, a Canadian environmentalist, scientist and author, well known in his native country, but not elsewhere. A post containing video of him discussing the fuel rod removal, called “David Suzuki’s Fukushima Warning is Dire and Scary” went up on Huffington Post and was a viral hit. So what is his warning, and is it accurate?

    The facts related to the fuel removal are certainly cause for concern: 1,500 fuel rods (also called fuel bundles)must be removed from Reactor #4 at Fukushima. The work is normally done via computer controlled crane, but because of the damage from the tsunami and a subsequent hydrogen explosion, the rods, which are 4 meter tubes containing pellets of uranium fuel and cocooned in water, have to be removed by manual guidance. It’s slow, deliberate and dangerous work, and also unprecedented. Spent fuel rods are pulled from nuclear reactors all the time, but never ones with the damage that Reactor 4 suffered.
    TEPCO has insisted they’ve taken every possible precaution, hence the delays, but given their previous bungling, it’s easy to see why some people don’t believe them.


    A screen grab from TEPCO’s video of the first fuel rods being removed

    And David Suzuki isn’t some average internet crank. His warning that an earthquake or major mistake during the fuel removal could trigger planetary catastrophe – “It’s bye-bye Japan—and everybody on the west coast of North America should evacuate” are his exact words – carries weight. He’s a highly respected guru, internationally honored and venerated for his groundbreaking work – in genetics. What he is NOT is a nuclear physicist.

    And real nuclear physicists (which, full disclosure, I am not) disagree strongly with Suzuki. Many believe he is deliberately exaggerating the risks of the fuel rod removal in particular and the entire Fukushima situation in general. They believe the idea of Japan being obliterated and the US needing evacuation is ridiculous and totally implausible. This skepticism toward fearmongering has been the trend over and over in fields that directly intersect with the Fukushima disaster – nuclear power, radiation, oceanography, medical research. Most of the people who research this stuff for a living believe that the fear being pushed on us about Fukushima has little or no basis in reality.
    Could they all be paid shills kowtowing to their paymasters in Big Nuclear? Sure. But if amateur scientists and anti-nuke activists can push their version of events, so can the experts. And the experts agree that the risk of Armageddon from Reactor 4 is miniscule, if not non-existent. And as of this writing, the fuel removal process has begun without incident. Let’s hope it continues.

    CLAIM: Fukushima is as bad as 14,000 Hiroshima bombs.
    Big numbers are scary. Hundreds of tons of water. Thousands of uranium rods. Trillions of becquerels. We’ve seen figures like this tossed around constantly in the two plus years since the tsunami hit Fukushima. The new number scaring the hell out of people is that the release of radiation from Reactor 4, if the fuel rod removal isn’t handled properly, could be the equivalent of 14,000 Hiroshima bombings. As many as 166,000 people died due to the Hiroshima bombing, so this is nothing to fool with, right?

    When dealing with a hyperbolic claim like “as much radiation as 14,000 Hiroshimas!” it’s best to go back to the original source and see if the research they did was sound. In this case, the claim has appeared in numerous places without any kind of citation (and has also been quoted as 15,000, which is a pretty big difference in the world of atomic bombs going off) making it hard to track down where it first came from.
    The first use that I found of the 14,000 figure is in a Reuters piece from August, where it was given by Hiroaki Koide, assistant professor at Kyoto University and a researcher in nuclear power who has since turned into an anti-nuclear activist. Neither Koide nor the piece’s two authors offer substantive proof of how they came up with this number, what kind of radiation would be released or what it means in a greater context – only the fear of what the worst case scenario. It also doesn’t bother explaining that the Hiroshima bombing and the Fukushima meltdown are vastly different and not really comparable except as incidents involving radiation in Japan. As a further imbalance against good science, the piece heavily quotes Arnie Gunderson, another nuclear power researcher turned activist.
    Since then, the claim of 14,000 Hiroshimas has spread all across the internet with no context and is unthinkingly used as an example of the nightmare that Fukushima could unleash. But without hard science to back up the claim, I can’t take it as anything other than an exaggeration offered by someone who believes nuclear power should be abandoned. It may not be a lie, but I can’t accept it as the truth. Not without evidence.
    Incidentally, the atomic bomb that detonated over Hiroshima, the so called “Little Boy,” was actually less powerful than the one that went off over Nagasaki. But “10,000 Nagasakis” doesn’t sound as scary as “14,000 Hiroshimas.”


    CLAIM: The scary radiation map. Many people have covered this one before, but since it’s still going around, I’m going to one more time. The map of red and yellow pouring out of Japan that you’ve seen a thousand times on social media is NOT a map of radiation. It has NOTHING to do with radiation. It’s a map of wave heights after the tsunami that caused the initial Fukushima incident. If it wasn’t, why would the waves stop when they hit land? Radiation doesn’t do that. Water does.

    CLAIM: Cancer rates are spiking in Fukushima’s children.
    Many bloggers are claiming that pediatric thyroid cancer rates have sharply risen around Fukushima, a trend that was seen in Ukrainian children after the Chernobyl meltdown. These allegations directly contradict a UN report from May that claims there would be no deaths from radiation as a result of the incident – owing to the quick evacuation of the area.

    However, a Lancet study from August confirmed an alarming rise in childhood thyroid cancer around Fukushima – with 44 confirmed or suspected cases out of 193,000 tested children. This is a much higher rate than normal. But the children are being screened regularly, which normally doesn’t happen. It’s rare to know that a child has a thyroid disorder until they start complaining about not feeling well, and better detection of any disease will reveal more cases of that disease. Furthermore, the spike in cancer rates post-Chernobyl didn’t appear until 4-5 years after the meltdown, which is not enough time for cancer to start developing around Fukushima – and nowhere near enough time for it to develop in the United States.
    Right now, more research is needed to prove whether the spike is a result of Fukushima or better detection. Until then, I want to point out one particular line in the Lancet article:
    “Unscientific comparisons with Chernobyl, which released far more radiation than Fukushima, are creating needless anxiety, particularly among the 160 000 people living close to the Fukushima facility who were evacuated in the hours after it was rocked by a tsunami on the afternoon of March 11, 2011.”
    Words to live by.

    CLAIM: Fukushima radiation is the cause of an epidemic of melting sea stars.
    Marine biologists are buzzing about a string of grisly starfish deaths in the Pacific Northwest and British Columbia. The creatures suddenly become covered with lesions, lose their internal pressure, begin disintegrating and die. However, this is a well-chronicled disease called starfish wasting syndrome, and has caused massive die-offs many other times, including as far back as 1983.

    Experts in the field don’t know what causes the disease or how to stop it. There’s speculation that it’s a parasite or possibly warmer water temperatures. But nobody in a position to know better is blaming it on Fukushima. To do so is simply post hoc logic – it happened after Fukushima, therefore that’s the cause.

    There are many other claims about the damage caused by Fukushima. All such stories, be they from TEPCO, reliable news sources or fringe conspiracy sites should be treated with skepticism and examined carefully. They should NOT be passed around without being read, and without consideration for whether they’re true or not. To do so only encourages needless anxiety.


    http://skeptoid.com/blog/2013/11/25/...ukushima-fear/
    NO AMNESTY

    DON'T REWARD THE CRIMINAL ACTIONS OF MILLIONS OF ILLEGAL ALIENS

    BY GIVING THEM CITIZENSHIP

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