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February 19 2019

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This information shouldn't be a surprise to anyone studying the multi generational effects of ionising radiation and should be a wakeup call for anyone attending the 2020 olympics in Japan some of which will be held in the coastal regions of Fukushima prefecture, the home of the single worst industrial disaster of all time.


February 17 2019

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Es sind ungewohnt deutliche Worte, welche die Atomaufsichtsbehörde Ensi in den letzten Wochen Richtung Leibstadt feuerte. Der Leitung des Atomkraftwerks werden «nicht tolerierbare Fehler» vorgeworfen.

Von einem «schweren Fall von menschlichem Fehlverhalten» spricht die Ensi, das Atomkraftwerk habe «die Qualitätssicherung seiner Arbeiten teilweise versäumt» und die Vorkommnisse zeigten, dass getroffene Massnahmen «keine Wirkung» gehabt hätten. Leider habe es in den letzten Jahren eine ganze Reihe von Vorfällen aufgrund menschlichen Fehlverhaltens im KKL Leibstadt gegeben, wird Georg Schwarz, stellvertretender Ensi-Direktor und Leiter Aufsichtsbereich Kernkraftwerke, zitiert.

Was war geschehen, dass eine Behörde, der Kritiker eine ungesunde Nähe zu den AKW-Betreibern vorwerfen, zu solchen Worten greift?


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"Scotland's nuclear history suddenly disappears from public archive"

ACCIDENT reports and safety reviews into nuclear weapons and atomic energy programmes in Scotland are among hundreds of documents to have been suddenly withdrawn from public view.

According to a report on the Sunday Post website, following a "security review" the files at the National Archives in Kew were removed so that they can no longer be accessed by the public.

The move has been described as "very concerning" by the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament (CND).

The documents relate to a range of topics on Britain’s nuclear weapons and atomic energy programmes, including the nuclear power plant in Dounreay, Caithness, as well as Chapelcross in Dumfries and Galloway and the Hunterston A and Hunterston B power stations which are located in Ayrshire.

It is not entirely clear why the files have been removed.

All that is known at this point is that Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA) ordered a security review and that a decision will be made on whether or not the documents should remain public."


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"Supporters say more nuclear power will combat climate change, but the industry is still failing to tackle its nuclear waste legacy.

The nuclear industry, and governments across the world, have yet to find a solution to the nuclear waste legacy, the highly dangerous radioactive remains that are piling up in unsafe stores in many countries.

A report commissioned by Greenpeace France says there is now a serious threat of a major accident or terrorist attack in several of the countries most heavily reliant on nuclear power, including the US, France and the UK.

The report fears for what may be to come: “When the stability of nations is measured in years and perhaps decades into the future, what will be the viability of states over the thousands-of-year timeframes required to manage nuclear waste?”

Hundreds of ageing nuclear power stations now have dry stores or deep ponds full of old used fuel, known as spent fuel, from decades of refuelling reactors.

The old fuel has to be cooled for 30 years or more to prevent it spontaneously catching fire and sending a deadly plume of radioactivity hundreds of miles downwind.

Some idea of the dangerous radiation involved is the fact that standing one metre away from a spent fuel assembly removed from a reactor a year previously could kill you in about one minute, the Greenpeace report says.

Official guesswork

The estimates of costs for dealing with the waste in the future are compiled by government experts but vary widely from country to country, and all figures are just official guesswork. All are measured in billions of dollars.

To give an example of actual annual costs for one waste site in the UK, Sellafield in north-west England, the budget just for keeping it safe is £3 bn (US$3.9 bn) a year.

It is estimated that disposing of the waste at Sellafield would cost £80 bn, but that is at best an informed guess since no way of disposing of it has been found.

The report details the waste from the whole nuclear cycle. This begins with the billions of tons of mildly radioactive uranium mine tailings that are left untended in spoil heaps in more than a dozen countries.

Then there are the stores of thousands of tons of depleted uranium left over after producing nuclear fuel and weapons. Last, there is the highly radioactive fuel removed from the reactors, some of it reprocessed to obtain plutonium, leaving behind extremely dangerous liquid waste.

Although the environmental damage from uranium mining is massive, the major danger comes from fires or explosions in spent fuel stores, which need constant cooling to prevent “catastrophic releases” of radioactivity into urban areas.

“Standing one metre away from a spent fuel assembly removed from a reactor a year previously could kill you in about one minute”"


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Everyone needs water to survive. But in the United States of America, more than 170 million people are drinking radioactive water, according to a new study by the Environmental Working Group (EWG). The consumption of radioactive elements may increase the risk of cancer, which is why this revelation is so concerning. Fortunately, a new interactive map reveals the locations the radioactive water has been found. This may enable citizens to find an alternate source of aqua until the public health crisis is fixed.

For its investigation, the EWG analyzed nearly 50,000 public water systems in all 50 US states. The group found that the water supply consumed by 170 million Americans contain radioactive elements. In 27 states, water supplies exceeded the EPA’s legal limits. Consumption of radioactive elements is linked with an elevated risk of cancer, as well as harm to fetal growth and brain development.


February 16 2019

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Erstmals besucht Svenja Schulze das Atommülllager Asse und Endlager Schacht Konrad. Die Umweltministerin erbt auch die Konflikte um die Lagerstätten.
Bevor Svenja Schulze in den Schacht absteigt, hinein in den engen Fahrstuhl, hinein ins Bergwerk, um 490 Meter tief unter dem bewaldeten Höhenzug in weißer Schutzkleidung auszusteigen, erlebt sie bereits eine neue Facette ihres atomares Erbes. Rund 20 Mitglieder einer Bürgerinitiative stehen in Schulzes Weg, als sie das gesicherte Areals der Asse betreten will. Eine Traube buntgekleideter Menschen, die alte grüne Basis, mit Transparenten für eine „atommüllfreie Asse“, umringt die Ministerin im Regen.

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Das Verursacherprinzip muss durchgesetzt werden. Der Atomstrom soll seine Kosten von morgen tragen, solange die Kernkraftwerke noch laufen.


Das Lagern von Atommüll löst eine internationale Krise aus

Der Grund: die Lager sind bald voll. Niemand weiss, wohin mit dem Atommüll. Er ist ja nicht nur stark radioaktiv, sondern meist auch äusserst giftig.
Reposted bydarksideofthemoonswissfondue-interim

February 15 2019

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NUCLEAR experts have warned of a Chernobyl-like “catastrophic accident” after more than 350 cracks were discovered in the power reactor at the Hunterston plant in North Ayrshire.

This breaches the Government’s agreed safety limit and has prompted calls for a permanent shutdown.

Hunterston’s operator, EDF Energy, insist the reactor is safe.

Reactor three at Hunterston B nuclear power station originally started generating electricity in 1976, and is the oldest in the UK.

It was closed in March this year to allow inspectors to probe for cracks.

The reactor was initially due to restart on March 30, but the date has been repeatedly postponed as more cracks have been found.

EDF is now hoping for permission from the UK government’s Office for Nuclear Regulation (ONR) to fire up the reactor on 18 December.

It follows a long-running investigation by the Ferret website. In April they revealed that new cracks had been discovered in the reactor, but at the time neither EDF nor the ONR would say how many.

In May, EDF said that 39 cracks had been found and they were “happening at a slightly higher rate than modelled”.

But yesterday, the website reported that more than 350 cracks had been discovered.

According to ONR, 350 is the “operational limit” in the safety case that determines whether or not the reactor is allowed to operate.

EDF has told the local Hunterston Site Stakeholder Group that it was likely to propose to the ONR that reactor three in future be permitted to run with up to 1000 cracks.

The cracks are produced by intense radiation bombarding the graphite blocks that make up the reactors.

Dr Ian Fairlie, a consultant on radiation in the environment and former member of the three-person secretariat to Britain’s Committee Examining the Radiation Risks of Internal Emitters, told the Ferret: “If other safety systems failed at the same time, there could be a catastrophic accident – such as occurred at Chernobyl in 1986 in the former USSR.”

He added: “EDF does not have a good handle on the ageing mechanisms inside the reactor. This means that reactor three should definitely not be restarted.”

An EDF spokesperson responded: “We have carried out the most extensive inspection programme on an advanced gas-cooled reactor station to date at Hunterston B.

“During the most recent inspection of reactor three we examined around a quarter of the core. As expected we identified a number of new cracks. This number exceeded the operational limit of the existing safety case but was significantly mitigated by the cracks being much narrower than modelled in the safety case.”

“The most recent results support the work we are doing on the long-term safety case and underline our confidence that the normal operations at the station are unaffected and that there would be safe shutdown in the event of a one in 10,000 year earthquake. We are preparing to present a safety case for return to service of reactor three to the regulator, ONR, for their assessment.

“We have also carried out similar inspections on reactor four and the case for return to service for that unit is currently with the ONR for review.”

The Scottish Government said that they were “aware of the situation at Hunterston B”.


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"Storage of nuclear waste a 'global crisis':"

"Nuclear waste is piling up around the world even as countries struggle to dispose of spent fuel that will remain highly toxic for many thousands of years, Greenpeace detailed in a report Wednesday.

An analysis of waste storage facilities in seven countries with nuclear power revealed that several were near saturation, the anti-nuclear NGO said.

All these nations also confronted other problems that have yet to be fully contained: fire risk, venting of radioactive gases, environmental contamination, failure of containers, terrorist attacks and escalating costs.

"More than 65 years after the start of the civil use of nuclear power, not a single country can claim that it has the solution to manage the most dangerous radioactive wastes," Shaun Burnie, a nuclear expert at Greenpeace Germany and coordinator of the report said in a statement.

In particular, storing waste material from nuclear power reactors deep in the ground—the most researched long-term storage technology—"has shown major flaws which exclude it for now as a credible option," he said.

Currently, there is a global stockpile of around 250,000 tonnes of highly radioactive spent fuel distributed across some 14 countries."


February 14 2019

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Le nucléaire continue d’être un sujet clivant en France. Si cette énergie est vantée pour ses faibles émissions de CO2, les critiques sont de plus en plus vives concernant la gestion des déchets. La France a dépassé les 1,5 million de mètres cubes de déchets radioactifs en 2016. Pour les moins radioactifs d’entre eux, ils sont stockés en surface. Les autres sont en attente d’une solution viable.

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Stop New Nuclear
“Leak First, Fix Later” Beyond Nuclear takes another look at the problem of ageing and deteriorating piping systems carrying radioactive liquids that still run under every nuclear power plant.

Nuclear power plants have an extensive network of piping systems dozens of which transport liquids that contain radioactive isotopes including tritium -- a radioactive form of hydrogen -- and long-lived strontium-90. 

These piping systems are not adequately inspected or maintained due to their inaccessibility.

Reactors continue to experience leaks and spills of radioactive material into groundwater..."

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How does everyone feel about a 43 yr old nuclear reactor with a 1000 cracks being restarted in a time of abrupt climate change with massive swings in temperature both record lows and record highs stressing already old, stressed metal?
Hands up anyone who has a 43 yr old piece of equipement they would gamble the biosphere on?

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