Category: Nuclear


Japan Allows Residents To Return To Fukushima Disaster ‘Hot Zone’


fukushima radiation children

Toru Hanai/Reuters

A child is tested for radiation exposure.

 

For the first time since Japan’s Fukushima nuclear disaster more than three years ago, residents of a small district 20 km (12 miles) from the wrecked plant are about to be allowed to return home. 

The Miyakoji area of Tamura, a northeastern city inland from the Fukushima nuclear station, has been off-limits for most residents since March 2011, when the government ordered evacuations after a devastating earthquake and tsunami triggered a triple meltdown at the power plant.

Tuesday’s reopening of Miyakoji will mark a tiny step for Japan as it seeks to recover from the Fukushima disaster and a major milestone for the 357 registered residents of the district – most of whom the city hopes will go back.

But homesick evacuees have mixed feelings about returning to Miyakoji, set amid rolling hills and rice paddies, a sign of how difficult the path back to normality will be for those forced from their homes by the accident.

Many families with young children are torn over what to do, one city official acknowledged.

“Young people won’t return,” said Kitaro Saito, a man in his early 60s, who opposed lifting the ban and had no intention of going home yet.

“Relatives are arguing over what to do” and friends disagree, he said, warming his hands outside his temporary home among rows of other one-room trailers in a Tamura parking lot. “The town will be broken up.”

Saito said he wanted to go back to his large hillside house in Miyakoji, but thinks the government is using residents as “guinea pigs” to test whether larger returns are possible.

 

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ZeroHedge

Japan Gives Residents All Clear To Return To Fukushima Disaster “Hot Zone”



As we reported last night, Japan’s economy may once again be relapsing into a slowing phase, perversely well in advance of the dreaded sales-tax hike which many expect will catalyze Japan’s collapse into another recession as happened the last time Japan had a tax hike, but that doesn’t mean its population should be prevented from enjoying the heavily energized local atmosphere buzzing with the hope and promise of imminent paper-based “wealth effects” for those long the daily penNikkeistock rollercoaster…. and just as buzzing with copious gamma rays of course. Which is why for the first time in over three years, since Japan’s Fukushima nuclear disaster, residents of a small district 20 km from the wrecked plant are about to be allowed to return home. Because if the honest Japanese government says it is safe, then so it must be.

But how is this possible?

Just recall, as we reported in December citing SCMP, that the incidence of Thyroid cancers had surged among Fukushima youths. It took the government a few days of contemplation before spinning this deplorable revelation as one which blamed not the coverup surrounding the Fukushima fallout, but – get this – the fact that children were getting sick because they were not going out enough!

Mindboggling as it may be, this is precisely the kind of ridiculous propaganda one would expect from a flailing authoritarian regime, with a crashing economy, and a demographic collapse with no credible options left except to goose the manipulated market higher… The kind of propaganda that is now being used to give the “all clear” to move back to Fukushima!

From Reuters:

The Miyakoji area of Tamura, a northeastern city inland from the Fukushima nuclear station, has been off-limits for most residents since March 2011, when the government ordered evacuations after a devastating earthquake and tsunami triggered a triple meltdown at the power plant. Tuesday’s reopening of Miyakoji will mark a tiny step for Japan as it seeks to recover from the Fukushima disaster and a major milestone for the 357 registered residents of the district – most of whom the city hopes will go back.

Because children need to be outdoors, mingling with the high energy radiation, to avoid the dreaded consequences of being locked indoors of course. Still, not everyone is a complete idiot:

 

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NUKEWARS


by Staff Writers
Muscat (AFP) March 13, 2014

 

Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif of Shiite Iran on Thursday sought to allay concerns among mainly Sunni Muslim Gulf Arab monarchies mistrustful of Tehran over its nuclear ambitions.

“Our message to the other countries of the Persian Gulf is a message of friendship, fraternity and cooperation,” Zarif said in the Omani capital Muscat, where he is accompanying President Hassan Rouhani on a landmark visit.

The sultanate maintains strong links with Tehran, and has played an important intermediary role between Western countries and the Islamic republic.

Gulf Arab countries have expressed concern about the reliability of Iran’s sole nuclear power plant at Bushehr and the risk of radioactive leaks in case of a major earthquake, as well as a possible military dimension to Iran’s nuclear drive.

Iran insists that its atomic ambitions are peaceful, despite fears in Israel and the West that these mask a covert drive to acquire the bomb.

“Iran is ready for strong and fraternal relations with all the states of the region,” said Zarif, who has embarked on a charm offensive towards the Gulf since Rouhani became Iran’s president in August.

 

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NUKEWARS

Iran’s Rouhani extends hand to Gulf monarchies


by Staff Writers
Muscat (AFP) March 13, 2014

 

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani sought Thursday to mend fences between his mainly-Shiite country and Sunni-dominated Gulf monarchies distrustful of Iran’s nuclear ambitions and its support of the Syrian regime.

Rouhani, winding up a two-day visit to Oman, said the Islamic republic offered “a hand of fraternity to all the countries of the region.”

“Relations with one country should not grow at the expense of another. We want to see the countries of the region live in peace, understanding and friendship,” Rouhani told a business gathering in Muscat.

The sultanate maintains strong links with Iran and has played an important role as mediator between Western countries and Tehran.

But other members of the Gulf Cooperation Council, which besides Oman also comprises Bahrain, Kuwait, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, have cool relations with Tehran.

Its Arab neighbours have expressed concern about the reliability of Iran’s sole nuclear power plant at Bushehr in the southern Gulf and the risk of radioactive leaks should it be hit by a major earthquake.

Like world powers, they also fear a possible military dimension to Iran’s nuclear drive, despite repeated assertions by Tehran that its atomic ambitions are peaceful.

Ties between Gulf countries and Iran have also been strained by Tehran’s backing of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s regime in its battle against rebels supported by the Arab monarchies.

“Cooperation and rapprochement would benefit the whole region,” said Rouhani, adding that his country is “open to investors from the region, especially Omanis.”

Oman and Iran are seeking to expand trade, which reached $1 billion last year, and bilateral investments which they expect will top $10 billion by the end of this year, Iranian Ambassador Ali Akbar Sibeveih said Monday.

 

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Published on Mar 8, 2014

What’s Leaking From the Nuclear Waste Isolation Pilot Program
Located near Carlsbad, New Mexico this Department of Energy (DOE) experimental nuclear waste dump is attempting to store leftover radioactive plutonium and americium from the US weapons program. On February 14, 2014 there was a nuclear safety failure at the site and the Department of Energy is not being honest about it. In this film Fairewinds Energy Education’s Arnie Gundersen pieces together what happened and points out Fairewinds’ major concerns about the facility, the accident, and the lack of transparency at the DOE.
http://fairewinds.org/media/fairewind…|

US Gov’t: Never faced challenge like this, but “not giving up hope” at WIPP; Salt from contaminated mine to be sold as feed to dairy farms — TV: “Residents flat out concerned for their safety”; “I want to believe them… but I don’t” — Reuters: ‘Falling slabs’ may have breached waste drums (VIDEO)
http://enenews.com/us-govt-weve-never…

Subsidence concerns at WIPP nuclear dump — Over 100 operating oil and gas wells within mile of site, a ‘very active’ area — Reserves ‘directly underneath’ buried waste — Fracking to take place nearby? (VIDEO)
http://enenews.com/concerns-about-sub…

“WIPP release story doesn’t add up… accident is unbelievable” — New tests show “high level” release underground — “Contains things far more radioactive than High Level Waste” — “I want to hear what really happened down there” (VIDEO)
http://enenews.com/accident-at-wipp-i…

WIPP Expert: Nuclear waste is getting out above ground — Plutonium / Americium found in “every single worker” on site when leak began — New Mexico officials ‘totally unsatisfied’ with lack of info from Feds — “We don’t know how far away it’s gone” — Continuing threat for long time to come (AUDIO)
http://enenews.com/wipp-expert-radioa…

Robot to probe underground at WIPP
http://www.currentargus.com/carlsbad-…

Major Nuclear Dump Has Leaked, But Does US Gov’t Have a Plan B?
Experts warn that troubled repository does not bode well for U.S. strategy for disposal of waste from nuclear weapons development
http://2knowabout.blogspot.ca/2014/03…

 

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The radiation leak site that wants more nuclear waste

The BBC’s Jane O’Brien takes an underground tour of the nuclear waste site before the radiation leak

A recent radiation leak at America’s only nuclear waste repository threatens the future of waste storage in the country. But leaders in the city of Carlsbad, New Mexico, still want their area to be a destination for America’s radioactive history.

Carlsbad works underground.

On the road into the city, derricks pump oil from deep in the Earth.

Residents go to work mining potash, a raw material used in fertiliser. Others give tours at Carlsbad Caverns National Park.

And some of Carlsbad’s underground workers make a half-mile (0.8km) journey into the earth not to take from the ground, but to bury the wastes of human invention.

This is WIPP, the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant, the only long-term geologic repository for nuclear waste in the United States.

WIPP from afar 3 October 2013 WIPP opened in south-eastern New Mexico in 1999

While other locales across the US have fought mightily to prevent the establishment of similar operations, almost all of Carlsbad is sanguine about the storage of nuclear materials just a 40-minute drive from the centre of town.

That confidence has been tested this month after a radiation leak and the initial report 13 workers had tested positive for radioactive contamination.

And as the only permanent storage facility for nuclear waste, problems at WIPP create problems for the larger US nuclear defence complex, including delays of already scheduled shipments from around the country.

But it is the first serious incident in WIPP’s history, and Carlsbad still appears to have confidence, albeit slightly shaken, in the site.

In fact, town officials are hoping their corner of New Mexico can be the home of even more nuclear waste.

 

Nuclear waste from WIPP

 

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New Mexico sets deadlines for handling WIPP nuke waste

By SUSAN MONTOYA BRYAN / Associated Press

Posted:   03/04/2014 07:25:28 AM MST

ALBUQUERQUE – The federal government’s only underground nuclear waste dump remained shuttered Monday and state environment officials said they have set deadlines for the U.S. Department of Energy and its contractor to deal with radioactive waste left above ground at the repository.Dozens of drums and other special containers that have been shipped to the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant from federal facilities around the country are being stored in a parking area at the plant and inside the facility’s waste handling building.

From there, the waste is usually taken to its final resting place deep in underground salt beds. However, the repository has been closed since early February due to back-to-back accidents, including a radiation release that exposed at least 13 workers and set off air monitoring devices around the plant.

Under its permit with the state, the dump can keep waste stored in the parking area for only 30 days and up to 60 days in the handling building. Due to the closure, the state is extending those deadlines to 60 days and 105 days, respectively. The federal government would have to develop an alternative storage plan if the underground dump remains off-limits for more than three months.

The Environment Department outlined the deadlines, along with requirements for weekly reports and a mandatory inspection before operations resume, in an administrative order made public Monday.
 

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Published on Mar 6, 2014

Report: “It’s a big lie, everybody in Japan knows” — Fukushima “far worse” than authorities admit, they must come clean about what really happened — Forbes Even Getting Suspicious? “Nuclear disaster at Fukushima perhaps the worst of all time”
http://enenews.com/reports-fukushima-…

Japan Newspapers: It appears ‘high-level radioactive contaminated water’ is flowing into ocean at Fukushima — “Fear nuclear complex might not be scrapped” — Nuclear official admits disaster at plant “is barely being managed”
http://enenews.com/japan-newspapers-i…

Survey: Evacuees unsure about choice of residence
An NHK survey shows that more than half of evacuees affected by the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami in northeastern Japan are feeling unsure about their choice of new residence.
NHK conducted the survey in January among 2,878 evacuees from Iwate, Miyagi and Fukushima prefectures and received 1,201 answers.
Eighty-six percent of the respondents said they had decided on their new residence.
71 percent said they will go back to exactly where they lived before, or to other areas in their former communities. Fifteen percent answered that they will move to other municipalities in their home prefectures or elsewhere in other prefectures.
Forty-five percent of the respondents said they have no doubts about their decision. But 55 percent said they often or sometimes wonder whether their choice of residence was right.
Those who are feeling undecided were asked about what they miss most. Thirty-five percent said land, houses and family graves, while others mentioned bonds with neighbors, friends and acquaintances.
Forty-six percent of the respondents unsure about their choice were those who are planning to return to their hometowns.
Associate Professor Reo Kimura from the University of Hyogo says the survey shows that even 3 years after the disaster the evacuees have to choose from limited options for rebuilding their lives.
He added that both central and local governments should explain once more their reconstruction plans and visions to reassure people.

Japanese NPO aid for Chernobyl affected
Officials from a Japanese civic group that supports people affected by the 1986 nuclear accident at Chernobyl, Ukraine, say the current situation in the country is hampering their humanitarian activities.
The non-profit organization in Nagoya, central Japan, has been sending medical equipment and funds to its counterpart in Ukraine for 24 years. The aid is used to help workers who deal with the crippled power plant and to treat children suffering from radiation exposure.

Japan eyes joint research on Monju with France
Japanese government officials plan to work with their French counterparts in developing next-generation nuclear reactor technologies to reduce radioactive waste.
They are apparently aiming to use the nation’s troubled Monju fast-breeder reactor.
Engineers in France are developing the ASTRID prototype reactor, which is expected to begin operation around 2025. Both reactors are designed to reduce nuclear waste.
Sources say Japanese officials are preparing to reach a basic agreement with France in late April. This will be followed by a formal accord.

2,900 MBq/km2 of Cesium-134/137 still fall down in Fukushima plant area monthly
http://fukushima-diary.com/2014/03/29…

Underground wall on the seaside of reactor3 was possibly broken / Groundwater level in sync with ebb and flow
http://fukushima-diary.com/2014/03/un…

THREE YEARS AFTER: Radioactive waste piles up in Tokyo area with no place to go
http://ajw.asahi.com/article/behind_n…

The US Government Has Engaged In a Series of Nuclear Cover-Ups Ever Since Hiroshima
http://www.globalresearch.ca/the-us-g…

Limerick nuclear reactor unit shut down
Read more from WFMZ.com at: http://www.wfmz.com/news/news-regiona…
Connect with us! Facebook/69WFMZ or @69News

What’s next at Fukushima? Are U.S. nuclear plants still at risk?
http://www.beyondnuclear.org/storage/…

PLUTONIUM DISPOSITION PROGRAM DOE
Needs to Analyze the Root Causes of Cost Increases and
Develop Better Cost Estimates
http://cryptome.org/2014/02/gao-14-23…

 

 

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Veterans Today

Enough to Kill 35,5000 People Released so Far

… by  Bob Nichols

(San Francisco) – Feb 28, 2014 – Carlsbad, New Mexico is the site of the nation’s only nuclear weapons program garbage dump. Plutonium is used in making The Bomb, it melts at 640 Deg C or 1,184 Deg F, and is made in reactors. It is not mined anywhere on Earth. Reactors exist to make Bombs.

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Source Current Argus Carlsbad New Mexico img_591-Feb.-06-09.35

Black Smoke from Plutonium Fire at Nuke Garbage Dump Source Current Argus

The Carlsbad Bomb making garbage dump is on fire. The burning radioactive metal does not go away, it turns to dense black radioactive smoke. The black smoke is very obvious in the daytime and it streamed from several ventilator shafts during a fire at the dump two weeks ago.

The shafts were then closed and the visible smoke kept underground. Plutonium does not need oxygen to burn and escaped anyway. The HEPA filters are not good enough to contain the very small Plutonium particles; that’s because nothing is. The fire very well could still be burning Plutonium and Uranium in the salt mine.

The special Bomb making isotopes catch fire easily and burn at unearthly high temperatures – nothing can contain a fire in the underground garbage dump.  Since Uranium and Plutonium burn at higher temperatures than rock salt, there is a remote possibility the underground dump itself is on fire.

This is all about the contaminated garbage left over from making nuclear and thermonuclear bombs. That is the source of the poisonous garbage buried 2200 ft, or 670.56 meters, beneath the southeastern New Mexico desert.

WIPP Pu239 Dispersion by wind Carlsbad New Mexico

WIPP Pu239 Dispersion by wind Carlsbad New Mexico

The nation manufactures and maintains more than 60,000 nuclear and thermonuclear weapons. Bomb production has not necessarily stopped. All the contaminated garbage, trucks, tools, junk, wipes and clothes, etc from 70 years plus of nuclear weapons production is stuffed down a hole in New Mexico.

 

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Did the Government Give Industrial Hemp a Pass to Clean Up Radiation in the States?

Christina Sarich

NationofChange / News Analysis

Published: Friday 14 February 2014

Hemp has numerous uses and could replace many crops that require heavy irrigation and pesticides, but the most interesting fact about hemp is that it “eats” radiation.

Article image

Activists have been shouting they want an end to GMO foods for more than a decade now, and Cannabis Sattiva L. supporters have been at it for even longer, so why has the US government finally given farmers the right to legally grow industrial hemp, the non-hallucinatory, sister plant of medical marijuana?

It is safe to say that industrialized hemp should have been legalized years ago. With THC levels so low, you would have to smoke more of it than Snoop Dogg to get ‘high’ – and that’s a lot of Cannabis, it is ridiculous that it was classified as a drug at all. It has numerous uses and could replace many crops that require heavy irrigation and pesticides, like cotton, for example. Here’s the most interesting fact though – hemp plants ‘eat’ radiation.

When the Chernobyl Nuclear Plant Reactor 4 accident caused severe radioactive contamination in 1986, families within a 30-kilometer area of the site had to be evacuated. Radioactive contamination was later found at 100 kilometers from the accident site, and Fukushima radiation levels are still to be determined, with the Japanese government planning on dumping their overflowing radiated water tanks into the Pacific as we speak.

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File:Flickr - law keven - Do you think he's alive^........jpg

Source Do you think he’s alive???…….

Author Keven Law from Los Angeles, USA

Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.0 Generic

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New UC Berkeley Test Reveals Fantastically High Cesium Levels on California Roadside

Christina Sarich

NationofChange / News Report

Published: Thursday 20 February 2014

For all the naysayers who said that Fukushima radiation wasn’t hitting the West Coast, here’s a new one for you. UC Berkeley lab tests are now showing high levels of cesium in cattle feed from a California dairy farm that was sent to a lab nine months prior to the test results being received  - a long delay that suggests levels are much higher now. Then, the one-two-punch – asphalt along a roadside in the sunny city which catches plenty of rainfall was then measured, much more recently, and a disturbing 3579 pci/kg were found. By anyone’s standards, that cannot just be chalked up as background radiation. Fukushima fallout isn’t just coming via ocean currents. It is in our rain, air and soil now.

After more than three years of government cover ups – from Japan, and within our own US agencies, the evidence is coming out from citizensUniversitiesonce-silenced scientists, and other reputable agencies making it almost impossible to keep the true damage of the Fukushima fallout quiet.

Those who have been looking for evidence – who haven’t seen fish washing up on their shores, or animals dying on their farms, insects with strange deformations – here’s the evidence. Radiation won’t kill you right away. It’s like other biotech and weaponized weather tactics our governments are using against their own people – it’s a soft kill that the disbelieving will wallow in, sadly, until they are already too far gone to realize the ‘conspiracy’ was truly to wipe out masses of people – whether it was done ignorantly for profit by the nuclear industry our as a false flag event to keep as all in check, and under totalitarian rule, will not matter.

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missingsky102 missingsky102

 

Published on Feb 13, 2014

TEPCO released a report entitled, TEPCO’s Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant Roadmap, that contained some astounding information regarding Unit 3. Follow Fairewinds Energy’s Arnie Gundersen as he shows you the 35-ton refueling bridge that fell in the Unit 3 spent fuel pool during the Unit 3 detonation explosion. Do the math. The bottom line here is that TEPCO has just acknowledged that at least 50-tons of rubble has fallen on top of and into the spent fuel pool in Unit 3. What does this 50-ton pile of debris mean to the Unit 3 spent fuel pool and its cleanup?
http://fairewinds.org/media/fairewind…

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missingsky102 missingsky102

 

Published on Feb 17, 2014

Published on Sep 28, 2012 by MrJmccammon
Primer for upcoming episodes of Fukushima and Beyond – Nuclear Waste by High Country Cow Punk.
Alternative Views Episode 427
1989 “The WIPP Trail” Originally Produced by Alternative Information Network
Produced by Frank Morrow
Hosts Frank Morrow and Doug Kellner
Transfer from glorious magnetic tape, Enjoy (IF you listen closely one can hear the hum of mechanical tracking, ah the good old days)
A documentary showing the ravages of nuclear power and nuclear bomb testing
on the people and environment, particularly in the New Mexico area. “The
WIPP Trail” provides statements from both sides, which reveal governmental
collusion with the nuclear industry. Funny there is a Roswell connection!
Creative Commons License: Attribution-Non-Commercial- Share Alike 3.0 USA
Redistribute This! Clips taken from video O.K. but must remain non-commercial and attribution necessary.

“The WIPP Trail” Copyright 1989
Copyright October, 1990

source video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Onj5EH…

New Mexico nuclear waste site has ‘radiological event’
Published time: February 16, 2014 09:36
http://rt.com/usa/new-mexico-nuclear-…

 

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SacBee.com

Radiation leak forces closure at New Mexico waste burial site

Published: Monday, Feb. 17, 2014 – 12:00 am

The Energy Department suspended normal operations for a fourth day at its New Mexico burial site for defense nuclear waste after a radiation leak inside salt tunnels where the material is buried.

Officials at the site, known as the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant, or WIPP, activated air filters as a precaution and barred personnel from entering the 2,150-foot-deep repository as they investigate what caused the leak. Radiation sensors sounded alarms late Friday, when no workers were in the underground portions of the plant.

Officials at the site discounted any effect on human health, saying no radiation escaped to the surface. But they said little about the extent of the problem or how it could be cleaned up.

“Officials at WIPP continue to monitor the situation,” spokeswoman Deb Gill said. “We are emphasizing there is no threat to human health and the environment.”

How long the repository will be closed and the impact on the defense nuclear cleanup program was unclear.

The Advanced Mixed Waste Treatment Project, a federal operation in eastern Idaho that is the biggest user of WIPP, said Monday that it had suspended waste shipments.

Gill said the repository shutdown occurred earlier this month after another incident in which a truck caught fire in an underground tunnel. That matter is still under investigation.

Any prolonged shutdown could cause a backup of waste at a dozen nuclear-weapons-related sites across the nation. In 2012, those dozen sites made 846 shipments to the dump, more than two per day. A spokesman at the Idaho operation said it was continuing normal business and storing the waste onsite.

WIPP officials have said little about what could have triggered the radiation leak.

Read More Here
 

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‘This is highly toxic poisoning that can be eliminated by stopping the desire to be a nuclear power over the world’

- Sarah Lazare, staff writer

(Photo: Flickr / Creative Commons / ihearttheroad)A New Mexico deep-earth repository for the U.S. military’s nuclear waste has likely sprung an underground radiation leak, sparking concern among Native American communities and other residents who “carry the burden” of this state’s nuclear legacy.

“Since the detonation and creation of first atomic bomb in New Mexico, we the people who live in close proximity of storage and creation of these weapons have been in a state of fear,” said Kathy Wanpovi Sanchez, Environmental Health and Justice Program Manager for Tewa Women United, an indigenous organization based in Northen Mexico.

Over the weekend, abnormally high levels of radioactive particles were found underground at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP) near Carlsbad in southeastern New Mexico, where radioactive waste, including from nuclear weapons production, is dumped deep beneath the earth’s surface and stored in salt formations.

“I believe it’s safe to say we’ve never seen a level like we are seeing. We just don’t know if it’s a real event, but it looks like one,” said Department of Energy spokesman Roger Nelson.

WIPP stores waste that releases alpha and beta radiation, which are highly cancerous when ingested, explained Arnie Gundersen, former nuclear industry executive turned whistleblower, in an interview with Common Dreams. DOE officials say radiation has not been detected in surface samples, and no workers have been exposed. They say they do not yet know the source of the suspected underground leak.

Gundersen says the technology behind WIPP is untested — hence the word “pilot” in the facility’s title. “As a society, we believe that if you stick things in the earth, they are safe,” he said. “But with radioactivity, it’s not dead. It can come back to haunt you if there is a leak afterwards. This is alive.”

Don Hancock, Director of the Nuclear Waste Program at the Southwest Research and Information Center, says the concerns about the site extend beyond the method of nuclear waste storage. “We have always thought the site is a bad site primarily because it is centrally located in one of the largest and most active oil and gas production areas in the United States. This does not seem to be an appropriate place to put waste.”

The incident comes just over a week after an underground truck fire forced an evacuation of the facility.

Nuclear experts are not convinced that the situation is safe. “This kind of incident is not supposed to happen,” said Hancock. “Just like the fire on the underground, there were these two incidents within a 12-day period. That is worrisome and that is a significant situation.”

Storage is not the only issue facing local residents. Nuclear waste transported from across the country, and across the state from the Los Alamos National Laboratory in the north, where nuclear weapons are developed, passes through “Native American reservations, major highways, and near school systems,” as it makes its way to WIPP, says Sanchez.

“Our pain and death due to cancer have been ignored. We are sick and tired of all this madness. And all this transportation and waste storage is for the benefit of a nuclear war weapons arsenal. Why?” asked Sanchez. “The U.S. government disregards and takes advantage of indigenous people. This is an unequal share of the burden we are carrying.”

She added, “This is highly toxic poisoning that can be eliminated by stopping the desire to be a nuclear power over the world.”

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NUKEWARS


by Staff Writers
Tehran (AFP) Feb 09, 2014


UN nuclear experts tackle Iran on arms allegations
Tehran (AFP) Feb 08, 2014 – Iran said talks Saturday with the UN atomic watchdog over allegations of Tehran’s past weapons work and additional safeguards were constructive and have been extended for another day.
The five-hour-long meeting came as the Islamic republic’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, demanded tolerance from critics of President Hassan Rouhani ahead of fresh talks with world powers.Negotiations between Iran and the Vienna-based International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) are building on a framework deal agreed in November that requires Tehran to take six practical steps by Tuesday.Chief inspector Tero Varjoranta and four experts are assessing the implementation of those measures, Iranian Atomic Energy Organisation spokesman Behrouz Kamalvandi said.

The official IRNA news agency quoted Kamalvandi as saying that the talks were “good, constructive and are progressing”.

He said both side had agreed to continue the talks on Sunday, which are expected to include long-standing allegations of “possible military dimensions” to Iran’s past nuclear activities.

IAEA director general Yukiya Amano told AFP last month that time was now ripe to ask the “more difficult” questions.

How long this takes “very much depends on Iran. It can be quick or it can be long. It really depends on their cooperation,” Amano said.

Another issue to be discussed is access to the Parchin military facility, suspected of having been used for research pertaining to weapons development prior to 2003, and possibly since, according to the IAEA.

The November deal, struck after two years of on-off talks, was separate from a landmark agreement reached with world powers the same month that has placed temporary curbs on Iran’s nuclear activities.

Implementation of the IAEA deal began in December, when inspectors visited Arak, where the small unfinished heavy water reactor has been hit by delays.

The site is of international concern because Iran could theoretically extract weapons-grade plutonium from spent fuel if it also builds a reprocessing facility.

Iran says it will continue work there but its atomic chief Ali Akbar Salehi said this week the reactor could be modified to produce less plutonium to “allay the worries.”

The second step was to visit the Gachin uranium mine, which took place in late January.

Also required were information on future research reactors, identifying sites of new nuclear power plants, and clarification on Iranian statements regarding additional enrichment facilities and laser enrichment technology.

All six measures have been implemented.

Iran agreed Sunday to clarify to the UN atomic agency its need for detonators used in nuclear devices, as part of a probe into allegations of its past weapons work.

The move is part of seven new steps agreed between Iran and the International Atomic Energy Agency to increase transparency over Tehran’s controversial nuclear drive.

And it appears to be the first time in years Iran has agreed to tackle IAEA suspicions that its nuclear work prior to 2003 had “possible military dimensions”.

The development comes with Iran set to resume nuclear talks with world powers later this month, after an initial accord in November imposed curbs on its uranium enrichment to allay concerns that it seeks to acquire atomic weapons.

Capping two-days of talks in Tehran with Iranian officials, the IAEA said Iran agreed to provide “information and explanations for the agency to assess Iran’s stated need or application for the development of Exploding Bridge Wire (EBW) detonators”.

According to the IAEA, Iran told the agency in 2008 that it had developed EBWs for “civilian and conventional military applications” but has yet to explain its “need or application for such detonators”.

Such fast, high-precision detonators could be used in some civilian applications but are mostly known for triggering a nuclear chain reaction. The IAEA believes they form “an integral part of a programme to develop an implosion type nuclear device.”

Mark Hibbs, senior associate at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, said the detonators are “fine wires… designed to perform with exceeding precision and reliability. Without that dependability, the detonations would fail.”

Citing an unnamed Iranian nuclear official, the ISNA news agency said Tehran would “provide information beyond what it had already provided to the agency” on the EBWs.

It did not elaborate.

Earlier, Iran’s envoy to the Vienna-based IAEA, Reza Najafi, said “seven more practical steps” had been agreed between the two sides in a deal that would be implemented by May 15.

Six other steps were agreed under a framework deal struck on November 11.

In the latest agreement, the IAEA will also have “managed access” to the Saghand uranium mine and the Ardakan yellowcake facility where an impure form of uranium oxide is prepared to be fed into centrifuges for enrichment.

Officially unveiled in April 2013, the plant in Ardakan receives raw material from Saghand, some 120 kilometres (75 miles) away. It can reportedly produce up to 60 tonnes of yellowcake annually.

Arak reactor in spotlight

Iran also agreed to submit updated design information and finalise a safeguards mechanism for the so-called heavy water reactor under construction in Arak.

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