Category: Human Experimentation


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CDC exposed as private corporation colluding with Big Pharma to defraud American taxpayers: see the evidence

 

CDC corruption

(NaturalNews) The illusory notion that the federal regulatory agency known as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is somehow a public entity working on behalf of the people to protect us all from disease is simply laughable.

The CDC, by definition, is a private corporation working on behalf of its stakeholders, which include key players in the pharmaceutical and vaccine industries that profit from the spread of disease, not from real prevention and cures.

The first and most obvious clue that the CDC isn’t what it appears on the surface is the fact that this supposed government agency is listed in the official Dun & Bradstreet (D&B) directory as a for-profit corporation.

D&B is a Fortune 500 company based in New Jersey that maintains databases on more than 235 million companies worldwide – it’s a who’s who of the global business climate, and is recognized as one of the first companies to be publicly traded on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE).

Here’s a screenshot of the CDC’s listing on D&B, courtesy of the AntiCorruption Society:

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Big Pharma and the CDC: one in the same

Anyone who tries to argue with you that the CDC is looking out for public safety as its first priority just needs to take a glance at D&B to see that the CDC is actually looking out for its own bottom line, and that of its corporate allies. Which brings us into our second piece of evidence that the CDC is a corrupt, drug-pandering sham – many of the CDC’s top health “experts” have ties to the pharmaceutical industry.

An investigation by the British Medical Journal (BMJ) and the Bureau of Investigative Journalism (BIJ) found that three key “scientists” who helped develop official swine flu policy for the World Health Organization (WHO), recommending that practically everyone be vaccinated, received cash payments from both Roche and GlaxoSmithKline (GSK), two pharmaceutical giants that manufacture swine flu vaccines.

These two companies, as reported by The Guardian in 2010, paid off policymakers in multiple countries, including in the U.S. (at the CDC), to write the WHO’s guidelines for swine flu that pushed dangerous swine flu vaccines on millions of people globally. With the help of the CDC and other corrupt agencies, these pharmaceutical corporations pocketed billions of dollars.

“The tentacles of drug company influence are in all levels in the decision-making process,” stated Paul Flynn, a British Member of Parliament who spoke out against this racket as it was occurring.

CDC pushes fake science promoting deadly drugs, vaccines

The CDC has also been complicit in forging fake science to push other dangerous vaccines like the MMR jab for measles, mumps and rubella. Robert F. Kennedy Jr. blew the lid on this scandal that same year, outing now-shamed scientist Poul Thorsen for stealing $2 million in research money while covering up the link between MMR and autism, which the CDC ate right up in its quest to protect the reputation of MMR.

Top CDC scientist Dr. William Thompson has also since come forward as a whistleblower to expose the CDC for manipulating research findings that showed MMR causes autism at a disproportionately higher rate in young black boys compared to other children – though MMR causes autism in all types of children, this same research found.

“As more and more ‘vaccination’ propaganda appears in the mainstream media, it is crucial that the American people become aware of the outrageous scam the CDC and the medical industrial complex are running,” warns the AntiCorruption Society.

“All that is needed is for folks to educate themselves and join the many good people (professionals and non-professionals) working to get the truth out.”

Sources for this article include:

AntiCorruptionSociety.com

TheGuardian.com

HuffingtonPost.com

NaturalNews.com

 

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Why the United States Leaves Deadly Chemicals on the Market

November 21, 2015  

By Valerie Brown and Elizabeth Grossman

 

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Scientists are trained to express themselves rationally. They avoid personal attacks when they disagree. But some scientific arguments become so polarized that tempers fray. There may even be shouting.

Such is the current state of affairs between two camps of scientists: health effects researchers and regulatory toxicologists. Both groups study the effects of chemical exposures in humans. Both groups have publicly used terms like “irrelevant,” “arbitrary,” “unfounded” and “contrary to all accumulated physiological understanding” to describe the other’s work. Privately, the language becomes even harsher, with phrases such as “a pseudoscience,” “a religion” and “rigged.”

The rift centers around the best way to measure the health effects of chemical exposures. The regulatory toxicologists typically rely on computer simulations called “physiologically based pharmacokinetic” (PBPK) modeling. The health effects researchers—endocrinologists, developmental biologists and epidemiologists, among others—draw their conclusions from direct observations of how chemicals actually affect living things.

The debate may sound arcane, but the outcome could directly affect your health. It will shape how government agencies regulate chemicals for decades to come: how toxic waste sites are cleaned up, how pesticides are regulated, how workers are protected from toxic exposure and what chemicals are permitted in household items. Those decisions will profoundly affect public health: the rates at which we suffer cancer, diabetes, obesity, infertility, and neurological problems like attention disorders and lowered IQ.

The link from certain chemicals to these health effects is real. In a paper published earlier this year, a group of leading endocrinologists concluded with 99 percent certainty that environmental exposure to hormone-disrupting chemicals causes health problems. They estimate that this costs the European Union healthcare system about $175 billion a year.

Closer to home, Americans are routinely sickened by toxic chemicals whose health effects have been long known. To cite one infamous example, people exposed to the known carcinogen formaldehyde in FEMA trailers after Hurricane Katrina suffered headaches, nosebleeds and difficulty breathing. Dozens of cancer cases were later reported. Then there are workplace exposures, which federal government estimates link to as many as 20,000 cancer deaths a year and hundreds of thousands of illnesses.

“We are drowning our world in untested and unsafe chemicals, and the price we are paying in terms of our reproductive health is of serious concern,” wrote the International Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics in a statement released on October 1.

Yet chemical regulation in the United States has proceeded at a glacial pace. And corporate profit is at the heart of the story.

That the chemical industry exerts political influence is well documented. What our investigation reveals is that, 30 years ago, corporate interests began to control not just the political process but the science itself. Industry not only funds research to cast doubt on known environmental health hazards; it has also shaped an entire field of science—regulatory toxicology—to downplay the risk of toxic chemicals.

Our investigation traces this web of influence to a group of scientists working for the Department of Defense (DOD) in the 1970s and 1980s—the pioneers of PBPK modeling. It quickly became clear that this type of modeling could be manipulated to minimize the appearance of chemical risk. PBPK methodology has subsequently been advanced by at least two generations of researchers—including many from the original DOD group—who move between industry, government agencies and industry-backed research groups, often with little or no transparency.

The result is that chemicals known to be harmful to human health remain largely unregulated in the United States—often with deadly results. For chemicals whose hazards are just now being recognized, such as the common plastics ingredient bisphenol A (BPA) and other , this lack of regulation is likely to continue unless the federal chemical review process becomes more transparent and relies less heavily on PBPK modeling.

Here we lay out the players, the dueling paradigms and the high-stakes health consequences of getting it wrong.

The dawn of PBPK simulation

The 1970s and 1980s saw a blizzard of environmental regulation. The Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act and Toxic Substances Control Act, along with the laws that established Superfund and Community Right-to-Know Programs, for the first time required companies— and military bases—using and producing chemicals to account for their environmental and health impacts. This meant greater demand for chemical risk assessments as the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) began to establish safety standards for workplace exposures and environmental cleanups.

In the 1980s, the now-defunct Toxic Hazards Research Unit at the Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Dayton, Ohio, was investigating the toxicity and health effects of chemicals used by the military. Of particular concern to the DOD were the many compounds used by the military to build, service and maintain aircraft, vehicles and other machinery: fuels and fuel additives, solvents, coatings and adhesives. The military is responsible for about 900 of the approximately 1,300 currently listed Superfund sites, many of which have been contaminated by these chemicals for decades.

In the mid-1980s, scientists at the Wright-Patterson Toxic Hazards Research Unit began using PBPK simulations to track how chemicals move through the body. Known as in silico (in computers) models, these are an alternative to testing chemicals in vivo (in live animals) or in vitro (in a test tube). They allow scientists to estimate what concentrations of a chemical (or its breakdown products) end up in a particular organ or type of tissue, and how long they take to exit the body. The information can then be correlated with experimental data to set exposure limits—or not.

PBPK simulations made testing faster and cheaper, something attractive to both industry and regulators. But the PBPK model has drawbacks. “It tells you nothing about effects,” says Linda Birnbaum, director of both the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) and National Toxicology Program (NTP). Observational studies and laboratory experiments, on the other hand, are designed to discover how a chemical affects biological processes.

Even regulatory toxicologists who support PBPK acknowledge its limitations: “[PBPK models] are always going to be limited by the quality of the data that go into them,” says toxicologist James Lamb, who worked for the NTP and EPA in the 1980s and is now principal scientist at the consulting firm Exponent.

The late health effects researcher Louis Guillette, a professor at the Medical University of South Carolina famous for studies on DDT’s hormonedisrupting effects in Florida alligators, put it more bluntly: “PBPK? My immediate response: Junk in, junk out. The take-home is that most of the models [are] only as good as your understanding of the complexity of the system.”

Many biologists say PBPK-based risk assessments begin with assumptions that are too narrow, and thus often fail to fully capture how a chemical exposure can affect health. For example, a series of PBPK studies and reviews by toxicologist Justin Teeguarden of the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory in Richland, Wash., and his colleagues suggested that BPA breaks down into less harmful compounds and exits the body so rapidly that it is essentially harmless. Their research began with certain assumptions: that BPA only mimics estrogen weakly, that it affects only the body’s estrogen system, and that 90 percent of BPA exposure is through digestion of food and beverages. However, health effects research has shown that BPA mimics estrogen closely, can affect the body’s androgen and thyroid hormone systems, and can enter the body via pathways like the skin and the tissues of the mouth. When PBPK models fail to include this evidence, they tend to underestimate risk.

Because of its reliance on whatever data are included, PBPK modeling can be deliberately manipulated to produce desired outcomes. Or, as University of Notre Dame biologist Kristin Shrader-Frechette, who specializes in human health risk assessment, says: “Models can offer a means of avoiding the conclusions derived from actual experiments.” In other words, PBPK models can be customized to provide results that work to industry’s advantage.

That’s not to say PBPK itself is to blame. “Let’s not throw the baby out completely with the bathwater,” says New York University associate professor of environmental medicine and health policy Leo Trasande. “However, when you have biology telling you there are basic flaws in the model, that’s a compelling reason that it’s time for a paradigm shift.”

A handy tool for industry

That PBPK studies could be used to make chemicals appear safer was as clear in the 1980s as it is now. In a 1988 paper touting the new technique, Wright-Patterson scientists explained how their modeling had prompted the EPA to stop its regulation process for a chemical of great concern to the military: methylene chloride.

Methylene chloride is widely used as a solvent and as an ingredient in making plastics, pharmaceuticals, pesticides and other industrial products. By the 1990s, the U.S. military would be the country’s second greatest user. Methylene chloride was—and remains—regulated under the Clean Air Act as a hazardous air pollutant because of its carcinogenic and neurotoxic effects.

Between 1985 and 1986, the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health estimated that about 1 million workers a year were exposed to methylene chloride, and the EPA classified the compound as a “probable human carcinogen.” A number of unions, including United Auto Workers and United Steelworkers, also petitioned OSHA to limit on-the-job exposure to methylene chloride.

In 1986, OSHA began the process of setting occupational exposure limits. Stakeholders were invited to submit public comments.

Among the materials submitted was a PBPK study by Melvin Andersen, Harvey Clewell—both then working at Wright-Patterson—and several other scientists, including two employed by methylene chloride product manufacturer Dow Chemical. Published in 1987, this study concluded, “Conventional risk analyses greatly overestimate the risk in humans exposed to low concentrations [of methylene chloride].”

Later that year, the EPA revised its previous health assessment of methylene chloride, citing the Wright-Patterson study to conclude that the chemical was nine times less risky than previously estimated. The EPA “has halted its rulemaking on methylene chloride [based on our studies],” wrote Wright-Patterson scientists in 1988.

OSHA, too, considered the Wright-Patterson study in its methylene chloride assessment—and its rulemaking dragged on another 10 years before the agency finally limited exposure to the chemical.

The usefulness of PBPK modeling to industry did not escape the Wright-Patterson researchers. “The potential impact,” wrote Andersen, Clewell and their colleagues in 1988, “is far reaching and not limited to methylene chloride.” Using PBPK models to set exposure limits could help avoid setting “excessively conservative”—i.e., protective— limits that could lead to “unnecessary expensive controls” and place “constraints on important industrial processes.” In other words, PBPK models could be used to set less-stringent environmental and health standards, and save industry money.

So far, they’ve been proven right. The work done at Wright-Patterson set the stage for the next 30-plus years. Results obtained using PBPK modeling—especially in industry-funded research, often conducted by former Wright-Patterson scientists—have downplayed the risk and delayed the regulation of numerous widely used and commercially lucrative chemicals. These include formaldehyde, styrene, tricholorethylene, BPA and the pesticide chlorpyrifos. For many such chemicals, PBPK studies contradict what actual biological experiments conclude. Regulators often defer to the PBPK studies anyway.

A web of influence

At the time that PBPK modelling was being developed, the chemical industry was struggling with its public image. The Bhopal, India, disaster—the methyl isocyanate release that killed and injured thousands—happened in 1984. The following year, a toxic gas release at a West Virginia Union Carbide plant sent about 135 people to hospitals.

In response to these incidents, new federal regulations required companies to account for the storage, use and release of hazardous chemicals. The minutes from a May 1988 Chemical Manufacturers Association (CMA) meeting show industry was feeling the pressure. Noting the federal scrutiny and the growing testing requirements, the CMA recommended that industry help “develop exposure data” and “explore innovative ways to limit required testing to that which is needed.”

Industry had already begun to do this by founding a number of research institutes such as the Chemical Industry Institute of Toxicology (CIIT), a nonprofit toxicology research institute (renamed the Hamner Institutes in an act of linguistic detoxification in 2007). This period also saw the rise of for-profit consulting firms like Environ (1982), Gradient (1985), ChemRisk (1985) and K.S. Crump and Company (1986), with which industry would collaborate advantageously in the following decades.

“Our goal was to do the science that would help the EPA and other regulatory bodies make the policies,” explained William Greenlee, Hamner president and CEO, in an interview for a business website. Indeed, over the past 30 years, Hamner and these consultancies have produced hundreds of PBPK studies, often with the support of chemical companies or trade groups. Overwhelmingly, these studies downplay or cast doubt on chemicals’ health effects—and delay regulation.

“I have seen how scientists from the Hamner Institutes can present information in a way that carefully shapes or controls a narrative,” says Laura Vandenberg, an assistant professor of environmental health sciences at University of Massachusetts Amherst. She explains that Hamner scientists often use narrow time windows or present data in a limited context, rejecting information that does not conform to their models. “These are the kinds of tactics used to manufacture doubt,” she says.

A close look at the authors of studies produced by these industry-linked research groups reveals a web of influence traceable to Wright-Patterson (see chart on following page). At least 10 researchers employed at or contracted by Wright-Patterson in the 1980s went on to careers in toxicology at CIIT/Hamner, for-profit consulting firms or the EPA. About half have held senior positions at Hamner, including the co-authors of many of the early Wright-Patterson PBPK studies: Melvin Anderson, now a chief scientific officer at Hamner, and Harvey Clewell, now a senior investigator at Hamner and principal scientist at the consulting firm ENVIRON. “I’m probably given credit as the person who brought PBPK into toxicology and risk assessment,” Andersen told In These Times.

A revolving door between these industry-affiliated groups and federal regulators was also set in motion. More than a dozen researchers have moved from the EPA to these for-profit consultancies; a similar number have gone in the other direction, ending up at the EPA or other federal agencies.

Further blurring the public-private line, CIIT/Hamner has received millions of dollars in both industry and taxpayer money. The group stated on its website in 2007 that $18 million of its $21.5 million annual operating budget came from the “chemical and pharmaceutical industry.” Information about its corporate funders is no longer detailed there, but Hamner has previously listed as clients and supporters the American Chemistry Council (formerly the CMA, and one of the most powerful lobbyists against chemical regulation), American Petroleum Institute, BASF, Bayer CropScience, Dow, ExxonMobil, Chevron and the Formaldehyde Council. At the same time, over the past 30 years, CIIT/Hamner has received nearly $160 million in grants and contracts from the EPA, DOD and Department of Health and Human Services. In sum, since the 1980s, these federal agencies have awarded hundreds of millions of dollars to industry-affiliated research institutes like Hamner.

But the federal reliance on industry-linked researchers extends further. Since 2000, the EPA has signed a number of cooperative research agreements with the ACC and CIIT/ Hamner. All involve chemical toxicity research that includes PBPK modeling. And in 2014, Hamner outlined additional research it will be conducting for the EPA’s next generation of chemical testing—the ToxCast and Tox21 programs. Over the past five years, Hamner has received funding for this same research from the ACC and Dow.

Meanwhile, the EPA regularly contracts with for-profit consultancies to perform risk assessments, assemble peer review panels and select the scientific literature used in chemical evaluations. This gives these private organizations considerable sway in the decision-making process, often with little transparency about ties to chemical manufacturers. The upshot: Experts selected to oversee chemical regulation often overrepresent the industry perspective.

These cozy relationships have not gone unnoticed; the EPA has been called to task by both its own Office of Inspector General and by the U.S. Government Accountability Office. “These arrangements have raised concerns that ACC or its members could potentially influence, or appear to influence, the scientific results that may be used to make future regulatory decisions,” wrote the GAO in a 2005 report.

Asked for comment by In These Times, the EPA said these arrangements do not present conflicts of interest.

Decades of deadly delay

PBPK studies have stalled the regulation of numerous chemicals. In each case, narrowly focused models developed by industry-supported research concluded that risks were lower than previously estimated or were not of concern at likely exposure levels.

Take, for example, methylene chloride, the subject of the 1987 paper Wright-Patterson scientists bragged had halted the EPA’s regulatory process. Despite the chemical being identified as “probably carcinogenic to humans” by the U.N. International Agency for Research on Cancer, a “reasonably anticipated” human carcinogen by the U.S. National Toxicology Program, and an “occupational carcinogen” by OSHA, the EPA has yet to limit its use. EPA researchers noted this year that the 1987 PBPK model by the Wright-Patterson scientists remains the basis for the agency’s risk assessment.

Today, methylene chloride remains in use—to produce electronics, pesticides, plastics and synthetic fabrics, and in paint and varnish strippers. The Consumer Product Safety Commission, OSHA and NIOSH have issued health warnings, and the FDA bars methylene chloride from cosmetics— but no U.S. agency has totally banned the chemical. The EPA estimates that some 230,000 workers are exposed directly each year. According to OSHA, between 2000 and 2012, at least 14 people died in the United States of asphyxiation or heart failure after using methylene chloride-containing products to refinish bathtubs. The Center for Public Integrity reports that methylene chloride exposure prompted more than 2,700 calls to U.S. poison control centers between 2008 and 2013.

Another telling example of industry-funded PBPK studies’ influence is formaldehyde. This chemical remains largely unrestricted in the United States, despite being a well-recognized respiratory and neurological toxicant linked to nasal cancer and leukemia, as well as to allergic reactions and skin irritation. The EPA’s toxicological review of formaldehyde, begun in 1990, remains incomplete, in no small part because of delays prompted by the introduction of studies—including PBPK models conducted by CIIT/Hamner—questioning its link to leukemia.

If that link is considered weak or uncertain, that means formaldehyde—or the companies that employ the sickened workers—won’t be held responsible for the disease. The chemical industry is well aware that “more people have leukemia … than have nasal tumors,” says recently retired NIEHS toxicologist James Huff.

Some of this CIIT/Hamner research was conducted between 2000 and 2005 with funding from an $18,750,000 EPA grant. In 2010, Hamner received $5 million from Dow, a formaldehydeproduct manufacturer, for toxicity testing, including PBPK modeling. The ACC, which opposes formaldehyde restriction, also supported this research.

Consequently, apart from a few state regulations and a pending EPA proposal to limit formaldehyde emissions from composite wood products like plywood, companies can still use the chemical—as in the FEMA trailers.

Cosmetics and personal-care products can also be sources of formaldehyde exposure. This made headlines in 2011 after hair salon workers using a smoothing product called Brazilian Blowout reported nausea, sore throats, rashes, chronic sinus infections, asthma-like symptoms, bloody noses, dizziness and other neurological effects. “You can’t see it … but you feel it in your eyes and it gives you a high,” salon owner and hair stylist Cortney Tanner tells In These Times. “They don’t teach this stuff in beauty school,” she says, and no one warns stylists about these products or even suggests using a ventilator.

OSHA has issued a hazard alert for these products and the FDA has issued multiple warnings, most recently in September, but regulations prevent federal agencies from pulling the products from store shelves. So, for formaldehyde, as in the case of the paint strippers containing methylene chloride, exposures continue.

BPA rings alarm bells

The chemical currently at the center of the most heated debates about consumer exposure is BPA. The building block of polycarbonate plastics, BPA is used in countless products, including the resins that line food cans and coat the thermal receipt paper at cash registers and ATMs. While scientific evidence of adverse health effects from environmentally typical levels of BPA mounts, and many manufacturers and retailers have responded to public concern by changing their products, federal regulatory authorities still resist restricting the chemical’s use.

BPA does not produce immediate, acute effects, like those experienced by salon workers exposed to formaldehyde or machinists working with methylene chloride. But in laboratory tests on animals, BPA is a known endocrine disruptor. Structurally similar to natural hormones, endocrine disruptors can interfere with normal cellular processes and trigger abnormal biochemical responses. These can prompt numerous health problems, including cancer, infertility, and metabolic and neurological disorders. BPA has also been linked to increased risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes and obesity.

To promote the idea that BPA is safe, the chemical industry routinely lobbies policymakers and “educates” consumers. What has not been widely discussed, however, is how industry has backed PBPK studies that marginalized research showing risks from environmentally typical levels of BPA. Many of these doubt-inducing studies have been conducted by researchers whose careers can be linked to the PBPK work done at Wright-Patterson. In published critiques, health effects researchers—among them Gail Prins and Wade Welshons—have detailed the many ways in which these PBPK models fail to accurately reflect BPA exposure.

PBPK and endocrine disruption

Over the past several decades, our evolving understanding of our bodies’ responses to chemicals has challenged previous toxicological assumptions— including those that are fed into PBPK models. This is particularly true of endocrine disruptors.

Cause-and-effect relationships between endocrine disruptors and health problems can be hard to pinpoint. We now know that early—even prenatal— exposure to endocrine disruptors can set the stage for adult disease. In addition, a pregnant woman’s exposures may affect not only her children but also her grandchildren. These transgenerational effects have been documented in animal experiments. The classic human evidence came from victims of DES, a drug prescribed in the 1940s, 1950s and 1960s to prevent miscarriages. Daughters of women who took the endocrine disruptor developed reproductive cancers, and preliminary research suggests their daughters may be at greater risk for cancer and other reproductive problems.

“The transgenerational work raises an incredible specter,” says Andrea Gore, who holds the Vacek Chair in Pharmacology at the University of Texas at Austin and edits the influential journal Endocrinology. “It’s not just what you’re exposed to now, it’s what your ancestors were exposed to.”

Complicating PBPK modeling further, hormone-mimicking chemicals, just like hormones, can have biological effects at concentrations as low as parts per trillion. In addition, environmental exposures most often occur as mixtures, rather than in isolation. And each individual may respond differently.

“PBPK doesn’t come close” to capturing the reality of endocrine disruption, the late developmental biologist Louis Guillette told In These Times, in part because modelers are “still asking questions about one chemical exposure with one route of exposure.” Even for health effects researchers, understanding of mixtures’ effects is in its infancy.

The debate over how endocrine disruption can be represented in PBPK models has intensified the unease between regulatory toxicologists and health effects researchers. That tension is particularly well-illustrated by a recent series of events that also reveal how some journal editors privilege the industry’s point of view.

A life-and-death debate

In February 2012 the World Health Organization (WHO) and the U.N. Environment Programme (UNEP) published a report intended to inform regulation worldwide. The authors were an international group of health effects researchers with long experience studying endocrine disruption.

“There is an increasing burden of disease across the globe in which [endocrine disruptors] are likely playing an important role, and future generations may also be affected,” said the report. These diseases, it continued, are being seen in humans and wildlife, and include male and female reproductive disorders, changes in the numbers of male and female babies born, thyroid and adrenal gland disorders, hormone-related cancers and neurodevelopmental diseases.

The backlash from toxicologists was immediate. Over the next few months—as the EU prepared to begin its regulatory decision-making on endocrine disruptors—the editors of 14 toxicology journals each published an identical commentary harshly criticizing the WHO/UNEP conclusions.

The commentary included a letter from more than 70 toxicologists urging the EU not to adopt the endocrine disruption framework. The letter said that the WHO/UNEP report could not be allowed to inform policy because its science is “contrary to all accumulated physiological understanding.”

This commentary was followed by further attacks. One critique, published in the journal Critical Reviews in Toxicology, was funded and vetted by the ACC.

These commentaries infuriated health effects researchers. Twenty endocrine journal editors, 28 associate editors and 56 other scientists—including several WHO/UNEP report authors—signed a statement in Endocrinology, saying in part:

The dismissive approach to endocrine disruption science put forth … is unfounded, as it is [not] based on the fundamental principles of how the endocrine system works and how chemicals can interfere with its normal function.

Endocrinology editor Andrea Gore tells In These Times that she and other health effects researchers don’t think the scientifically demonstrated dangers of endocrine disruptors are subject to debate. “There are fundamental differences between regulatory toxicologists and what I refer to as ‘people who understand the endocrine science.’ ”

The outcome of this debate and the structure of future regulatory toxicity testing in the United States and Europe is not yet clear. The EPA appears to be attempting to incorporate endocrine disruption into PBPK models, but many scientists are skeptical the process will produce reliable results, given the models’ limitations and the complexity of endocrine effects.

From science to activism

Although couched in complex language, these arguments are not academic, but have profound implications for public health. Disorders and diseases, increasingly linked to exposure to endocrine disruptors— including metabolic, reproductive, developmental and neurological problems—are widespread and increasing. About 20 percent of U.S. adults show at least three of the five indicators of metabolic syndrome: obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and heart disease. Neurological problems, including behavioral and learning disabilities in children as well as Parkinson’s disease, are increasing rapidly. Fertility rates in both men and women are declining. Globally, the average sperm count has dropped 50 percent in the last 50 years.

Scientists typically shy away from activism, but many now believe it’s what’s needed to punch through the machinations and inertia regarding chemical regulation. Shanna Swan, Mount Sinai professor of preventive medicine, obstetrics, gynecology and reproductive medicine, notes that some of the biggest reductions in chemical exposures have happened in response to consumer pressure on both industry and policymakers. Or, as the University of California’s Bruce Blumberg says, “I think we need to take the fight to the people.”

The Endocrine Society stressed the urgency of addressing these public health impacts in a statement released September 28. Not surprisingly, industry disagreed, calling this science “unsupported” and “still-unproven.”

Meanwhile, PBPK studies continue to succeed in sowing doubt about adverse health effects of endocrine disorders. Their extremely narrow focus leads to narrow conclusions that often result in calls for more research before regulation. In regulatory decisions, “the assumption is that if we don’t know something, it won’t hurt us,” says University of Massachusetts, Amherst professor of biology R. Thomas Zoeller. In other words, the burden of proof remains on health effects researchers to prove harm, not on industry to prove safety—and proving harm is difficult, especially when other scientists are seeding doubt.

But the clock is ticking. As Washington State University geneticist Pat Hunt told In These Times, “If we wait [to make regulatory decisions] for ‘proof’ in the form of compelling human data, it may be too late for us as a species.”

This investigation was supported by the Leonard C. Goodman Institute for Investigative Reporting and published originally in In These Times.

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Monsanto’s Roundup: The Whole Toxic Enchilada

November 19, 2015

Monsanto’s Roundup: The Whole Toxic Enchilada

Last week, while we waited for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to announce whether or not the agency will give Monsanto’s Roundup a free pass by green lighting the use of glyphosate for another 15 years, the EPA’s counterpart in the EU made its own big announcement.

Glyphosate is “unlikely to cause cancer” said the authors of the new report by the European Union Food Safety Authority (EFSA).

That headline, music to Monsanto’s ears, seemed to fly in the face of the findings published earlier this year by the World Health Organization (WHO). After extensive review of the evidence, all 17 of WHO’s leading cancer experts said glyphosate is a “probable human carcinogen?”

Sustainable Pulse (SP), publisher of global news on GMOs and other food-related issues, quickly reported the glaring omission made by the majority of news sources reporting on EFSA’s findings.

According to SP, what EFSA really concluded is this: Glyphosate by itself doesn’t cause cancer. But products like Monsanto’s Roundup, which contain glyphosate and other additives and chemicals that are essential to making the herbicide work? That’s another, or in this case, the rest of the story.

 

Read More Here

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The seven hundred years-old expression, “curses are like chickens; they always come home to roost,” rarely has been more appropriate than to describe what is happening to the world’s largest purveyor of gene-manipulated or GMO seeds and paired chemical toxins. It couldn’t happen to a nicer bunch of genocidal eugenicists. Monsanto Corporation of St Louis is apparently in a deep decline.

 

Ever since 1992 when that nasty US President George H. W. Bush conspired–yes, Virginia, conspiracies exist– with the leadership of Monsanto to unleash GMOs on an unwitting American population, Monsanto seemed unstoppable.

With the help of Bush, who made a decree that no US Government agency be allowed to independently test GMO seeds or their chemicals for health and safety–the fraudulent and totally unscientific Doctrine of Substantial Equivalence–Monsanto could make its own fraudulent doctored tests and give them to US or EU agencies as valid. As a result, GMO seeds took over American agriculture, based on a pack of lies to farmers that they would raise yields and decrease chemical use. Monsanto spread its GMO far around the world, through bribery as in Indonesia, and through the unusual machinations of the Government of the United States. Monsanto paid scientists to lie about its products safety.

It used the corrupt Brussels European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) to back its position, even when alarming studies such as the famous September 2012 Food and Chemical Toxicology peer-reviewed study by Prof. Gilles-Eric Seralini created shock waves around the world. The Seralini study, the first ever long term, two year study of GMO diet with a group of 200 rats found shocking effects. Among them that,”female rats fed Monsanto GMO maize died 2–3 times more than controls, and more rapidly… Females developed large mammary tumors almost always more often than, and before, controls; the pituitary was the second most disabled organ; the sex hormonal balance was modified by GMO and Roundup treatments.”

Monsanto then set about to kill the messenger by pressuring the Food & Chemical Toxicology journal to hire a former Monsanto employee, Richard E. Goodman, who promptly declared Seralini’s study “unscientific” and deleted it, an act almost without precedent in science journals. A year later both Goodman and the journal’s editor-in-chief were forced to step down and Seralini’s article was republished in another scientific journal. But the scientific character assassination against Seralini had a chilling effect as Monsanto wanted.

Read More Here

 

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Activist Post

Interrupt Your Regularly Scheduled Program

US Senate Passes Bill Approving Mandatory Vaccinations for Veterans

mandatory_vaccineBy Janet Phelan

Fundamentally, biological warfare is sneaky. It involves a microbial sucker punch to its intended target, often accomplished in a manner in which the aggressor can claim clean hands, while his victim may suffer or die.

Biological warfare can take a number of forms. The question—how can you get a bacteriological or toxic agent on board without the target being alerted– has been asked and answered. In addition to using humans and animals as vectors, biological warfare agents can be airborne, waterborne, foodborne or put into pharmaceuticals.

Substantial concerns have been voiced concerning the potential for inserting bioweapons into vaccines. Indeed, given the history of known contaminated vaccines, this is hardly a matter of speculation. Polio vaccines have been found to contain cancer. A Merck rotavirus vaccine was found to be contaminated with a pig virus. Another Merck product, the Hepatitis B vaccine, was reported to have been laced with the AIDS virus. In addition, a tetanus vaccine distributed in the Third World was found to contain human chorionic gonadotrophin, an anti-fertility agent known to produce spontaneous abortions.

The correlation between the rise in vaccinations of children and autism has become an urban legend.

A Bill has just passed the US Senate, mandating that the US Department of Veteran Affairs ensure that all veterans receive immunizations (vaccines) per a draconian schedule. At this juncture, active military must receive over a dozen vaccines. This piece of legislation is therefore an effort to extend the vaccine mandate to those who have previously served their country.

 

Read More Here

Hello  everyone , 

 

 I am back from my hiatus.  I really was  not sure if I would be back at all.   Yet here I am  with an oldie but definitely a goody.  This video was posted in 2012 with test results and  scientific findings  that  should have  made  the  difference  in the termination of GMO in the  marketplace.  Or at least a moratorium on its widespread release.  Not to mention the  cross contamination with non-gmo crops out in the fields.   This is  clear  and  concise proof that we  have been  sold out .  Not to mention being used as  guinea pigs in this race to fill Monsanto’s  bank accounts .  Along with other companies like it and their  benefactors the  FDA and The  USDA.

Sooooooo,  if you were still living in that fantasy land that believes  the government is there to protect you, then please  wake up and  smell the rotting corpse of what used to be a public service oriented office.  For it is now and  has been for quite a  while an office of corporate, personal, political and  governmental gain at the expense of the  people.  It is our children and all the children who will come after who are  and will be the by product of this exercise in greed and callous disregard for human life. 

Still asleep?

 

Desert Rose+

 

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** A  heartfelt Thank you, to those of you  who waited and  those of you who joined in my absence.  Your  support is very much appreciated.  I am not sure how active I will be , but I will do my best to bring you some of the information I come across on a daily basis as well as some Guest writers when and as they arise 🙂

 

~Be vigilant and aware , for our foes only advantage is the element of surprise~

Desert Rose

**********************************************************************

Patrick Timpone

 

Published on Oct 1, 2012
Click on the link to hear the entire interview
http://www.oneradionetwork.com/health…World renowned scientist lost his job when he warned about GE foodsDr
Arpad Pusztai evoked world wide media attention in August 1998, when he
said in British TV that he would not eat genetically engineered food
because of the insufficient testing procedures they have undergone.Pusztai
is a world renowned expert on food safety, who worked at UK’s leading
food safety research lab, the Rowett institute. His statement obviously
threatened to damage the then ongoing multimillion PR campaign of the
Biotech industry to create public confidence in GE foods. A few days
after his public appearance he was suspended and gagged by the research
institute where he worked.

Pointed out weakness in present food regulations
Dr
Pusztai’s pointed out that substances in Genetically Engineered (GE)
foods that have a slow acting effect would not be detected because
present regulations do not require long term safety testing. The
regulations prescribe an approval procedure based on the principle of
substantial equivalence. In practice this procedure allows very
superficially tested foods to be approved. As an illustrative example,
he mentioned fresh results from his research on certain pesticidal
Lectins (Pusztai is recognized as a world leading expert on Lectins).
Pusztai found that rats developed immune system defects and stunted
growth after a time period corresponding to 10 years of human life.Humiliating statements displayed about Pusztai
A
few days after his appearance on TV and Radio, the Rowett intstitute
suspended Pusztai. It was said that the GE potatoes were not intended to
be used as food. It was maintained that the results reported by Dr
Pusztai were misleading because he had mixed up the results of different
studies. In that context it was pointed out that he was old (68),
giving the impression of a senile and confused person. It was also said
that the research had not been done on GE potatoes but on a mixture of
natural potatoes and Lectin. It was indicated in a humiliating way that
the quality of Dr Pusztai’s research was deficient. The formal reason
for his suspension was that he had presented the results publicly before
they had been reviewed by other scientists (peer review) as required by
the Rowett Institute. At the same time as he was suspended, he was
disallowed to speak with the media to defend himself (which would have
revealed the misleading information from Rowett Institute).A
scientific committe was asked by the Rowett institute to review the
study Pustai referred to. It said there were important deficiencies in
the study.Independent scientists confirmed the correctness of Pusztais conclusions
Pusztai
then sent the research protocols to 24 independent scientists in
different countries. These turned down the conclusions of the review
committee and found that his research was of good quality and justified
his conclusions. They found that Pusztai had not mixed up any results.

Scientists
and physicians (including the undersigned), who had been in touch with
Pusztai confirmed that he was perfectly clear-minded with no signs of
confusion or memory defects.

“Breathtaking impertinence” by Royal society according to Lancet
Then
a second review committe was appointed by the Royal Society in UK. It
again concluded that Pusztai’s results were inconclusive yes even
flawed.

A world leading scientific journal found the judgement
of the Royal Society “a gesture of breathtaking impertinence” (Lancet,
Editorial, May 22, p1769).

Pusztai has pointed out a number of
obvious deficencies in this review report, see also the interview below
and Dr Pusztai’s website, where he explains this in detail.

Harmful GE potatoes would have been approved
Recently
Pusztai has also said that the lectin potatoes he had been studying
were indeed intended for food although that was denied by the Rowett
institute. That was the reason why he wanted to make the alarming
results known. Had not Pusztai’s long term study revealed the danger,
the GE lectin potatoes might very well have turned up on the market, as
formally they were “substantially equivalent” with the natural variety,
Pusztai said. This case demonstrates the serious insufficiency of the
present regulations for food safety that don’t demand long term testing
of GE foods, see Substantial equivalence versus scientific food safety
assessment. This is the probable reason why great efforts were made to
suppress the truth and to “kill” the messenger.

 

 

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.

 

Read More Here

 

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:

 

Read More Here

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30 January 2014 11:30 PM

Oil and gas fracking is big business in America, with more than two million hydraulically fractured wells across the country producing 43 and 67 per cent of our national oil and gas outputs, respectively. These wells also nearly played a secondary role as nuclear waste storage sites, had the Atomic Energy Commission had its way with Project Plowshare.

Hydraulic fracturing (or “fracking”) is the process of pumping water deep into the Earth, specifically into underground oil and gas reserves, at tremendous pressures in order to break apart the surrounding rock and free the energy product, which can then be pumped out and used.

However in the mid 1950s, scientists from the Atomic Energy Commission and officials from the US Bureau of Mines began experimenting with an alternative method of fracking, one that employed nuclear bombs more powerful than anything we dropped on the Japanese.

Dubbed Project Plowshare, this insane undertaking explored two industrialized — or “peaceful” — applications for nuclear explosives:

Conceptually, industrial applications resulting from the use of nuclear explosives could be divided into two broad categories: 1) large-scale excavation and quarrying, where the energy from the explosion was used to break up and/or move rock; and 2) underground engineering, where the energy released from deeply buried nuclear explosives increased the permeability and porosity of the rock by massive breaking and fracturing.

In 1967, the AEC teamed up with the US Bureau of Mines and El Paso Natural Gas Company for what would be the first of a series of underground experiments. In a remote gas well outside of Farmington, New Mexico, researchers lowered the 29-kiloton “Gasbuggy” nuclear device 1200 metres into the Earth and set it off. The results were spectacular.

“The 4042-foot-deep detonation created a molten glass-lined cavern about 160 feet in diameter and 333 feet tall,” according to the American Oil and Gas Historical Society. “It collapsed within seconds. Subsequent measurements indicated fractures extended more than 200 feet in all directions — and significantly increased natural gas production.”

The U.S. Government Once Fracked Oil Wells Using Nuclear Bombs

This initial success led to numerous additional tests in the following years — 27 experiments and 35 nuclear explosions in total. While most of the experiments were small, above-ground explosions were detonated in Nevada with the goal of forming craters and canals. Indeed, two additional underground tests in ’69 and ’73 proved even more massive than Gasbuggy.

Read More Here

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Forbes

U.S. Experimented With Nuclear Fracking

Jeff McMahon, Contributor

1/29/2014 @ 12:13PM

A few weeks ago, a reader wrote to me asking how we can be sure the government isn’t slyly getting rid of nuclear waste by injecting it into shale rock that’s been fracked for oil or gas. Jon Abel’s questions will seem far-fetched to some of you, worrisome to others, depending on how much you trust government and the energy industry:

I wanted to mention something that might be getting missed with the whole radioactivity issue surrounding fracking waste water,” my reader wrote. “Has anyone tested for other radioactive metals – such as cesium or plutonium (not just NORM elements)? And, has anyone tested the frack water for radioactivity BEFORE it goes down the frack production wells? Is it possible that the government is getting rid of nuclear waste in this manner?”

Far-fetched or not, no sooner had Jon posed the question than someone proposed it.

At the annual meeting of the American Geophysical Union in San Francisco, Leonid Germanovich of the Georgia Institute of Technology suggested that nuclear wastes deposited in shale rock would never return to the surface.

“It’s basic physics here — if it’s heavier than rock, the fracture will propagate down,” said the physicist and civil and environmental engineer.

Jens Birkholzer, head of the Nuclear Energy and Waste Program at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, told Livescience the idea is impractical, largely for safety reasons, but in fact, the government has already disposed of nuclear wastes this way, as you’ll read below.

Jon Abel’s questions had me wondering whether these two explosive forms of energy extraction had ever been combined.

And indeed they have.

In December, 1967, scientists from the Atomic Energy Commission and officials from the U.S. Bureau of Mines and El Paso Natural Gas Company gathered at a gas well in northern New Mexico, near Farmington. They lowered a 29-kiloton nuclear device more than 4,000 feet down the shaft and set it off.

It worked.

Read More Here

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Forbes

Jeff McMahon, Contributor

Gina McCarthy, US President Barack Obama’s nominee to run the Environmental Protection Agency(EPA) oversaw the revision of the Protective Action Guide Manual (Image credit: AFP/Getty Images via @daylife)

The acting EPA director on Friday signed a revised version of the EPA’s Protective Action Guide for radiological incidents, which critics say radically relaxes the safety guidelines agencies follow in the wake of a nuclear-reactor meltdown, dirty-bomb attack, or other unexpected release of radiation.

Although the document is a draft published for public comment, it takes effect as an “interim use” guideline. And according to Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER), that means agencies responding to radiation emergencies may permit many more civilian fatalities.

“In soil, the PAGs allow long-term public exposure to radiation in amounts as high as 2,000 millirems,” PEER advocacy director Kirsten Stade said in a press release. “This would, in effect, increase a longstanding 1 in 10,000 person cancer rate to a rate of 1 in 23 persons exposed over a 30-year period.”

The non-binding document does not relax EPA’s standards, the agency has said in response to the criticism. But it directs agencies responding to radiation releases to standards at other agencies that are less stringent than EPA. Douglas Guarino has the scoop at NextGov, a publication that follows technology and government:

The new version of the guide released Friday does not include such dramatically relaxed guidelines in its text, but directs the reader to similar recommendations made by other federal agencies and international organizations in various documents. It suggests that they might be worth considering in circumstances where complying with [EPA’s] own enforceable drinking water regulations is deemed impractical….

For example, the new EPA guide refers to International Atomic Energy Agency guidelines that suggest intervention is not necessary until drinking water is contaminated with radioactive iodine 131 at a concentration of 81,000 picocuries per liter. This is 27,000 times less stringent than the EPA rule of 3 picocuries per liter.

Read More Here

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Nextgov

EPA Relaxes Public Health Guidelines For Radiological Attacks, Accidents

Jackie Johnston/AP file photo

After years of internal deliberation and controversy, the Obama administration has issued a document suggesting that when dealing with the aftermath of an accident or attack involving radioactive materials, public health guidelines can be made thousands of times less stringent than what the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency would normally allow.

The EPA document, called a protective action guide for radiological incidents, was quietly posted on a page on the agency’s website Friday evening. The low-profile release followed an uproar of concern from watchdog groups in recent weeks over news that the White House had privately agreed to back relaxed radiological cleanup standards in certain circumstances and had cleared the path for the new EPA guide.

Agency officials had tried to issue the protective action guide during the final days of the Bush administration in January 2009, but the incoming Obama camp ultimately blocked its publication in part due to concerns that it included guidelines suggesting people could drink water contaminated at levels thousands of times above what the agency would typically permit.

The new version of the guide released Friday does not include such dramatically relaxed guidelines its text, but directs the reader to similar recommendations made by other federal agencies and international organizations in various documents. It suggests that they might be worth considering in circumstances where complying with its own enforceable drinking water regulations is deemed impractical.

Such circumstances could include the months – and possibly years – following a “dirty bomb” attack, a nuclear weapons explosion or an accident at a nuclear power plant, according to the guide, a nonbinding document intended to prepare federal, state and local officials for responding to such events.

For example, the new EPA guide refers to International Atomic Energy Agency guidelines that suggest intervention is not necessary until drinking water is contaminated with radioactive iodine 131 at a concentration of 81,000 picocuries per liter. This is 27,000 times less stringent than the EPA rule of 3 picocuries per liter.

“This is public health policy only Dr. Strangelove could embrace,” Jeff Ruch, executive director for the watchdog group Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility, said in a statement Monday, referring to Peter Sellers’ character in the Stanley Kubrick film of the same name.

Read More Here

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Fukushima News 10/24/13: Tepco Abuses Employees; Running Out Of Storage Space; Tepco Struggles

MissingSky101 MissingSky101

Published on Oct 24, 2013

Fukushima plant struggles with typhoon threat
The operator of the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant is racing to secure storage space for tainted rainwater as another powerful typhoon approaches.
Tokyo Electric Power Company has begun moving the rainwater into underground pools once deemed too leaky. The water is the result of typhoons and downpours that have filled barriers around radioactive waste water tanks.
TEPCO has been storing the most contaminated rainwater in tanks and in the basement of a turbine building. But with Typhoon Francisco set to hit Japan’s mainland over the weekend, the tanks are full.
Japan’s nuclear regulator has approved moving the tainted water to 3 underground pools. The pools have a total capacity of about 9,000 tons.
TEPCO stopped using the pools after similar models leaked in April. The utility now says it has no other option but to use them.
The utility also says it found 140,000 becquerels per liter of Beta-ray emitting radioactivity in an onsite ditch on Wednesday. The radioactivity has doubled since the previous day. TEPCO says it is transferring the contaminated water to a tank.

NRA allows simplified release of barrier water
Japan’s nuclear regulator has allowed the operator of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant to simplify its procedure to release water from barriers around tanks holding water contaminated by radioactivity.
A Nuclear Regulation Authority, or NRA, taskforce made the decision on Thursday.
It had previously only permitted the Tokyo Electric Power Company to discharge rainwater from the barriers after it moved the water temporarily into other tanks and confirmed the contamination levels were below the NRA-set standard.
However, since last month, TEPCO has not been able to keep pace with the increase in rainwater volume inside the barriers due to recent downpours.
This has caused water above the permitted contamination level to overflow the barriers.
The situation has prompted the NRA to approve TEPCO’s proposal to drop the procedure of temporarily transferring the rainwater in the barriers to other tanks.

A-bomb survivors abroad win medical fees in trial
A court has ordered the Osaka prefectural government to pay the medical fees of 3 atomic bomb survivors who received treatment in South Korea.
Japan’s law for relief of atomic bomb survivors covers all the medical fees of survivors, who are known as hibakusha. But coverage is limited to survivors living in Japan.
The court’s decision on Thursday is said to be the first time refusal to pay medical bills for overseas hibakusha has been ruled illegal.
The Osaka District Court awarded a total of about 13,350 dollars to a 67-year-old South Korean man and to the families of 2 other deceased hibakusha.

Atomic commission advised to quit policy making
A government panel says the Japan Atomic Energy Commission should no longer set the country’s nuclear policy.
Panel members on Thursday discussed a proposal for ending the policy-making role of the commission.
They gave their general approval to the proposal. Panel members said the commission’s work is limited to the field of nuclear energy, while the industry ministry drafts the country’s overall energy policy.
But some panel members question the ministry’s neutrality, since it promotes nuclear energy.

Fukushima World: The Death of Us
http://dirtytrainers.org/fukushima-wo…

TEPCO prepares for critical removal of spent fuel from Fukushima reactor
http://japandailypress.com/tepco-prep…

Fukushima Accident Updates
http://www.hiroshimasyndrome.com/fuku…

Fuel Removal From Fukushima’s Reactor 4 Threatens ‘Apocalyptic’ Scenario
In November, TEPCO set to begin to remove fuel rods whose radiation matches the fallout of 14,000 Hiroshima bombs
http://www.commondreams.org/headline/…

Japan’s Cut-Price Nuclear Cleanup
TEPCO woes continue amid human error, plummeting morale and worker exodus
– See more at: http://japanfocus.org/-Justin-McCurry…
http://japanfocus.org/-Justin-McCurry…

The News That Matters about the Nuclear Industry
http://nuclear-news.net/

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