Fukushima fallout: Throwing radioactive caution to the wind – and sea Cynthia McKinney

Fukushima fallout: Throwing radioactive caution to the wind – and sea
Cynthia McKinney
https://www.rt.com/op-edge/319053-fukushima-fallout-radioactive-japan/

After serving in the Georgia Legislature, in 1992, Cynthia McKinney won a seat in the US House of Representatives. She was the first African-American woman from Georgia in the US Congress. In 2005, McKinney was a vocal critic of the government’s response to Hurricane Katrina and was the first member of Congress to file articles of impeachment against George W. Bush. In 2008, Cynthia McKinney won the Green Party nomination for the US presidency.
Published time: 19 Oct, 2015 11:08


An aerial view shows No. 4 (front L), No. 3 (front R), No. 2 (rear L) and No. 1 reactor buildings at Kansai Electric Power Co.’s Takahama nuclear power plant in Takahama town, Fukui prefecture, in this photo taken by Kyodo November 27, 2014. © Kyodo
An aerial view shows No. 4 (front L), No. 3 (front R), No. 2 (rear L) and No. 1 reactor buildings at Kansai Electric Power Co.’s Takahama nuclear power plant in Takahama town, Fukui prefecture, in this photo taken by Kyodo November 27, 2014. © Kyodo / Reuters
In the aftermath of Japan’s Fukushima nuclear power meltdown following the tsunami of March 11, 2011, the international community has totally failed in keeping the public properly informed and protected from the fallout.

Scientists and environmental officials continue to express concern, even now, at the unusual events and wonder about the causes. At the same time, the media present the facts, but fail to make any connection whatsoever to the ongoing state of affairs stemming from the tragic 2011 events at Fukushima.

Here are a few recent examples:

Seabird die-off reported around Kodiak, Alaska: A September 2015 audio report from Robin Corcoran, biologist from the Kodiak Wildlife National Refuge, confirms local reports that “emaciated” bird carcasses are washing up on Kodiak Island shores. Corcoran states that the birds were “showing up in places where people don’t normally see them . . . foraging, trying to find forage fish.”

© Toru Hanai
© Toru Hanai / Reuters

The KMXT narrator quoted Corcoran as saying it was unclear what caused the deaths but “could be related to the birds’ inability to catch forage fish,” while it was evident “the birds have no fat on their bodies and they don’t have any food in their digestive systems which indicates that they starved.”

Corcoran confirms that the last major bird die-off experienced in the region was January through March of 2012. The program concluded by stating that multiple species of birds have declined in number in other Alaska regions, according to surveys taken by the Wildlife Refuge. The next day, KTOO reported that Corcoran speculated on several causes for the die-off: “flight feather molt,”“whale die-offs,” or “harmful algal blooms . . . related to warm ocean temperatures.”

A few days before the Kodiak reports, The Daily Astorian headlined: “Scientists Searching for Answers in Bird Die-Off.” Julia Parish, speaking on behalf of the University of Washington’s Coastal Observation and Seabird Survey Team, states that the spikes in deaths are two to three times higher than normal. Josh Saranpaa of the Wildlife Center of the North Coast was quoted as saying, “Every bird we’re seeing is starving to death. It’s pretty bad.” Saranpaa added, “When you see so many starving, something is not quite right out there.”

The warming ocean and the toxic algae bloom are offered as possible explanations for the die-offs. Warming oceans, it is explained, cause the fish to swim deeper than the birds can dive while the toxic algae bloom runs from California straight up to Alasak. Parish concludes that it has been a really “odd” year with multiple regional scale events. She says that there is not much that researchers can do except wait and watch.

Julia Reis of the Half Moon Bay Review writes with understatement, “There have been noticeable changes in the Pacific Ocean that have caused difficulties for marine life of late.”


© Shizuo Kambayashi
© Shizuo Kambayashi / Reuters

Gerry McChesney of the Farallon National Wildlife Refuge says that the die-off has him all the more “baffled” because of the strip of cold water in his area full of food for these birds. In my mind’s eye, I can see McChesney scratching his head as I read that he considers poisoning, starvation, and El Nino as possible causes for the die-off. The article ends with the following comment by McChesney, “We might have to see some other problem in the ocean before we understand what’s causing the die-off.”

ENENews.com points to the problem of the massive die-off happening from San Diego to Alaska—all along the West Coast of the U.S. It highlights in various reports words like “strange,” “unprecedented,” “crazy,” “worst,” with this iconic quote from The Sacramento Bee: “Our gut tells us there is something going on in the marine environment.”

Behrens [1] published an open access 2012 model simulation of cesium 137 (137Cs) released into the Pacific Ocean as a result of the Fukushima incident and found that after the first two to three years, tracer elements descended to depths of more than 400 meters, reached the Hawaiian Islands after about two years, and North American territorial waters after about five to six years.

Although in decreased rates of concentration from the initial injection, the entire northern Pacific basin becomes saturated with tracer fluids in this simulation. This study finds that the radioactivity remains at about twice pre-Fukushima levels until about Year Nine when radioactivity tapers to pre-Fukushima levels. This research specifically does not investigate the biological effects of increased radioactivity in the Pacific Ocean.

In 2011, Lozano [2] investigated reports of man-made cesium atmospheric detection as far away as the Iberian Peninsula. Mangano and Sherman [3] take their 2015 investigation of Fukushima radiation exactly into a potentially politically uncomfortable, but essential space: biological effects. They look at “congenital anomalies” that occurred in the U.S. western states after the arrival of radioactive Fukushima Fallout. And they found that while in the rest of the U.S., birth defects decreased by almost four percentage points, on the U.S. West Coast, defects increased by thirteen percent.

View Dr. Sherman’s interview by Russia Today’s Thom Hartman where she explains the research.

Even U.S. soldiers are now experiencing Fukushima Fallout with exposure hitting home in health effects and birth defects. The Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution explains how Fukushima radioactivity reaches ocean life from both air and sea discharges. These air, ground, or sea discharges, by the way, continue twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week. Arne Gundersen of Fairewinds.org estimates that by 2015 at least 23,000 tanker truckloads of radioactive water have been released into the Pacific Ocean “with no end in sight.”

Please tell me whatever happened to the Precautionary Principle in public policy? [4] Is profit more important than prudence? Finally, a 2015 study by Synolakis and Kanoglu [5] finds that the Fukushima tragedy was preventable. They conclude that due to design flaws, regulatory failures, and “arrogance and ignorance,” and concludes that Fukushima Daiichi was “a sitting duck waiting to be flooded.”

With all of this as background, the media provide coverage of marine anomalies mentioning global warming, even El Nino and toxic algae, while the elephant in the room is Fukushima radiation. It is this silence that is deafening! It makes me wonder who are the beneficiaries of the nuclear power business? Why is the nuclear power lobby so strong when the dangers are clearly so evident? Instead, we are told: “It is fossil fuels that are destroying the planet. Nuclear power is clean and safe.” I’m also told that nuclear power is a sign of modernity; it is the future. But solar, geothermal, and wind are rarely given a mention by these same individuals. I’m also told that by posing these questions, I’m fearmongering.

I do want to know why in the face of what appear to be Pacific Ocean die-offs, El Nino is mentioned and not the Fukushima-related elevated levels of radiation. As long as there is a palpable lack of transparency in the mainstream media’s ordinary coverage of extraordinary environmental events, that includes what one senses as a reticence to discuss the obvious, I predict that there will be a proliferation of citizen journalists and citizen scientists seizing upon each piece of new data trying to make sense out of a government-approved narrative that just doesn’t make sense—again.
US President Obama stated, “We do not expect harmful levels of radiation to reach the West Coast, Hawaii, Alaska, or U.S. territories in the Pacific.”

We should not rely on government officials to tell us the truth about the full extent of Fukushima’s fallout: Incredibly, Obama advised the people of the U.S. not to take precautionary measures beyond “staying informed.” Canada immediately suspended measurements of radiation around Vancouver. The government of Japan has not been trustworthy from the very beginning about the extent of the tragedy.

The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.

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ENENews: Gov’t Report: Plutonium detected in recent California air samples — “Fallout from Fukushima nuclear accident”

Gov’t Report: Plutonium detected in recent California air samples — “Fallout from Fukushima nuclear accident” may be to blame

Published: December 28th, 2015 at 6:54 pm ET
By ENENews
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156 comments

Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (pdf), Sept 28, 2015 (emphasis added):

Ambient Air Radioactive Particulates
Composite samples were analyzed by alpha spectroscopy for plutonium-239+240, which was detected in 2 out of 206 samples taken in 2014. Detections at the Livermore Site and Livermore off-site locations [in California] for plutonium-239+240 are attributed to a number of factors including the following: resuspension of plutonium-contaminated soil (see Chapter 6); ambient air from historical operations; resuspended fallout from previous atmospheric testing; or fallout from the Fukushima nuclear accident.
The highest values and percentage of the DCS for the plutonium-239+240 detections were as follows: Livermore Site perimeter: 13.4 nBq/m3 (0.36 aCi/m3)… Livermore off-site locations: 10.4 nBq/m3 (0.28 aCi/m3).

See also: Official data shows U.S. hit with huge spike of ‘most dangerous’ radiation from Fukushima — Levels far exceeded federal regulatory limits — Alpha particles nearly 1,000 times normal; Includes plutonium — Gov’t workers in “fear of radiation”

I hope yall aren’t waiting around for the govt. to tell you that all will be ok. There is no health threat. It takes four or more years for cancer to set in. Fukushima has been pouring 400 tons of radioactive waste cocktail into the Pacific every day since 03/2011. Almost five (5) years now. Tell me, what do you think 5 years of waste cocktail did to the Pacific Ocean?

ENENews: “‘Special Alert’ issued for major dam upstream of US nuclear plants”

‘Special Alert’ issued for major dam upstream of US nuclear plants — Muddy seepage coming up near foundation — Cause of sinkhole and ‘mysterious’ discharges unknown after weeks of analysis — Newspaper: “Hopefully, it isn’t catastrophic” — Officials working around clock, submarines and ground-penetrating radar in use

Published: November 24th, 2014 at 2:44 pm ET
By ENENews
http://enenews.com/special-alert-issued-major-dam-upstream-nuclear-plants-sinkhole-mysterious-discharges-unknown-after-weeks-analysis-muddy-seepage-coming-foundation-officials-working-around-clock-submarines-gr
 
TVA Special Alert

Follow up to: Sinkhole develops under dam in US with nuclear plants downstream — Water now seeping out — Gov’t notified of ‘stability issues’, plants begin evaluating potential flood impacts

Tennessee Valley Authority, Nov 17, 2014 (emphasis added): Special Alert – TVA will continue to lower Boone Lake… to help engineers determine the cause of water and sediment seeping from the riverbank below the dam. The safety of our employees and the public is TVA’s top priority… we are continuously monitoring the dam.

TVA, Nov 12, 2014: “Public safety is our overriding priority and we believe that continuing the drawdown is a prudent action we should take” [said John McCormick, TVA River Operations]. Over the past couple of weeks TVA engineers and independent engineering firms have [used] side-scan sonar, remotely controlled submarines and ground-penetrating radar.

WCYB, Nov. 13, 2014: Engineers have still not found the source of water and sediment [in the] investigation into a sinkhole and seepage of clay particulates… at Boone Dam… They are working around the clock to find the cause.

WJHL, Nov 20, 2014: TVA: still no cause known for Boone Lake seepage — The cause of a mysterious problem on the banks of Boone Lake still has not been found.

Hydroworld, Nov 5, 2014: Seepage at TVA facility prompts dam safety inspection… During dam inspection Oct. 20, engineers… became aware of a sinkhole… Oct. 26, inspectors discovered seepage near the location of the original sinkhole, underwater in the… foundation.

Times-News, Nov 7, 2014: Muddy seepage [at] Boone… Hopefully, it isn’t catastrophic.

WJHL, Nov. 12, 2014: After weeks of investigation, [TVA] still doesn’t know what’s causing water and sediment to seep from the Riverbank below Boone Dam [or] whether the seepage is related to a nearby sinkhole… TVA is warning dock and marina owners that the water is going down yet again… officials seemed confident it would find a solution to the problem… But now, two weeks later, TVA still doesn’t know… Typically, TVA keeps a regimented schedule… But Wednesday’s announcement is open-ended. TVA only said the duration of the extended drawdown depends on the results of its investigation.

WJHL transcript, Nov 12, 2014: Warning for people who live and work around Boone Lake… levels will drop faster and lower than normal… to solve a lingering mystery [and it] will keep dropping until crews find out what’s going on. — John McCormick, TVA official: “The sinkhole by itself is not uncommon, but the seepage into the waterway is not a common occurrence.”

Watts Bar Nuclear Plant, 2.4 Hydrologic Engineering (1 of 2), Aug 14, 2013: Dam Failure Permutations – There are 12 major dams above Watts Bar Nuclear Plant whose failure could influence plant site flood levels [including] Boone… failure of low margin dams is postulated during the [probable maximum flood] for the Boone, Fort Patrick Henry, Melton Hill and Apalachia Dams… The failures are complete and instantaneous down to original ground elevation… Watts Bar West Saddle Dike… is postulated to fail when its peak headwater elevation occurs [and is] assumed to be complete and instantaneous down to original ground.