June 28, Tuesday

[ . BACK to TOP of this BLOG. ]

red poppy dolls
sit alone by the beach -
dead children of Tohoku

. Akakeshi 赤芥子 Red Poppies Dolls .
from Miyagi


Gabi reports:

More strong rain is expected in Tohoku, while Western Japan should see some sunshine.
There have been quite a few mudslides and swollen rivers causing damage by now in Tohoku.

. . . . .

TEPCO is still going forth and then back again with the water cooling system.
Now the pipes are leaking . . . They are now struggeling since June 14 with this new system.

Prime Minister Kan seeks 3 bills before resignation
. The Political Situation .  INFO .


Bulletins from NHK Online
source : www3.nhk.or.jp

Tuesday, June 28, 2011 02:19
Radioactive ash found in waste incineration plant
An operator of waste incineration plants in Tokyo says it has found a high density of radioactive materials in ash at one of its plants.
An Edogawa ward plant, which handles general household garbage, detected 9,740 becquerels of radioactive materials per kilogram of ash.
The ash was collected from a device to filter exhaust fumes.
The plant's operator, an organization jointly set up by Tokyo's 23 wards, believes that radioactive cesium built up through the incinerating process.
But it says there is no danger of the toxic substances escaping into the environment as they were trapped by the filter.
Legally, the plant can only bury ash registering 8,000 becquerels or less per kilogram.
But ash contaminated with more than 8,000 becquerels must be stored until the government determines a safe disposal method.
Following the latest findings, Tokyo consulted the central government and decided to temporarily store the contaminated ash inside the plant.
Tokyo on Monday asked the government to come up with guidelines for the ash's disposal.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011 08:04
Nuclear plant operator skipped pipe check
The operator of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant says it skipped a scheduled test of the plant's water pipes on Monday, shortly before it was forced to suspend a water recycling operation due to leaks.
The utility ran the filtering system, designed to recycle contaminated water for use in cooling the reactors, for just 90 minutes on Monday before treated water was found leaking from unfastened pipes.
The operator says it failed to check the 4 kilometers of piping as it had found no problem during an inspection more than 2 weeks ago. The company says it will review that decision.
The utility is under pressure to commence the recycling system as the contaminated water may start overflowing around July 5th.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011 08:54
Radioactive strontium detected in seabed
Radioactive strontium has been detected for the first time on the seabed near the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant.
Tokyo Electric Power Company says it found strontium-89 and -90 in the seabed soil. The company conducted a survey on June 2nd about 3 kilometers off the coast at 2 locations, some 20 kilometers north and south of the nuclear complex.
The substances pose a serious health risk because they can accumulate in the bones if inhaled, which could cause cancer.
Up to 44 becquerels per kilogram of strontium-90 were detected, which has a half-life of 29 years.
The substances had been detected before in soil on land and in seawater following the nuclear accident in March. A member of the government's Nuclear Safety Commission, Shigeharu Kato, says more examination should be carried out to find out if or how the substances can accumulate in marine life.
The fishery ministry conducted separate surveys. It did not find radioactive strontium in fish and seafood samples taken off the coast of Ibaraki and Chiba prefectures. Both are located south of the Fukushima plant.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011 10:46
Japan creates new ministers' posts
Prime Minister Naoto Kan has promoted his advisor Goshi Hosono to the new ministerial post of nuclear power plant affairs.
Environment and Disaster Management Minister Ryu Matsumoto will serve in the newly-created post of reconstruction minister. He will oversee the rebuilding of the areas hit by the March 11th earthquake and tsunami. The change is aimed at creating a stronger system to deal with the nuclear crisis at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, and reconstruction.
Government Revitalization Minister Renho will become an advisor to the Prime Minister. Justice Minister Satsuki Eda will also serve as Environment Minister concurrently.
Earlier, Prime Minister Kan asked Shizuka Kamei, the head of the People's New Party, to accept the post of deputy prime minister. The party is a member of the governing coalition. When Kamei refused, Kan appointed him as an advisor.
Kan also named an Upper House lawmaker, Kazuyuki Hamada, who resigned from the main opposition Liberal Democratic Party, as vice-minister for the Ministry of Internal Affairs. He will help oversee reconstruction.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011 13:08
TEPCO checking water circulation system
The operator of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant is checking its trouble-hit water-recycling system to try and get it running again as soon as possible.
Tokyo Electric Power Company was forced to halt the new system on Monday after only about an hour and a half of operation due to water leakage.
TEPCO said on Tuesday that water burst from a weak connection that wasn't checked in advance. It said the leak lasted for 2 minutes at most, and that about a single ton of water seeped out.
Under the recycling system, highly radioactive water is pumped out of reactors, decontaminated and then circulated back inside the reactors as coolant.
TEPCO believes the system holds the key to cooling down the reactors, while decreasing the amount of contaminated water that is threatening to overflow.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011 15:19
TEPCO president apologizes to shareholders
The president of Tokyo Electric Power ompany apologized for the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant accident at a shareholders' meeting on Tuesday.
The meeting started in the morning at a Tokyo hotel. By 11 AM, the shareholder attendance had climbed above 8,600, more than double the record number set last year.
President Masataka Shimizu said the leak of radioactive materials outside the Fukushima plant has caused severe problems such as mass evacuations.
Shimizu also apologized for the company's net loss of more than 1.2 trillion yen, or 15 billion US dollars, in its settlement for the fiscal year ending in March.
Shareholders grilled the company management. One person said critics had been pointing out the dangers of the Fukushima plant for some time, and questioned how management would take responsibility for the reactors' meltdown.
Other shareholders said the current and former company executives should sell their own assets to pay damages to victims of the disaster.
Some shareholders proposed that the utility should withdraw from nuclear power generation. How much support the proposal will muster from other shareholders is now a focus of attention.
The general meeting will vote on the agenda, including the elections of directors, after the question and answer session is complete.
TEPCO shareholders pressure utility management
The management of Tokyo Electric Power Company has come under severe criticism from shareholders over its handling of the accident at its Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant.
The utility's shareholders meeting was held in Tokyo on Tuesday morning. The meeting was attended by over 9,300 shareholders, nearly 6,000 more than the record number of participants set last year.
President Masataka Shimizu opened the meeting with an apology for the leak of radioactive materials outside the plant, saying it has caused severe problems such as mass evacuations. He also apologized for the company's net loss of more than 1.2 trillion yen, or about15 billion dollars, in its settlement for the fiscal year that ended in March.
During the question and answer session, shareholders attacked the management's responsibility.
One person said critics had been pointing out the dangers of the Fukushima plant for some time, and asked how management would take responsibility for the reactors' meltdown.
Another said the utility had been causing trouble with its nuclear power generation and that accidents could happen again unless management practices are changed.
The meeting later adopted, as proposed, the utility's agenda proposals including the elections of directors.
Meanwhile, a proposal by more than 400 shareholders to have the utility's corporate rules stipulate a withdrawal from nuclear power generation was voted down.
At the meeting, motions to dismiss the chair of the meeting -- the chairman of the utility Tsunehisa Katsumata -- were proposed but were voted down. Supporters of the proposals said there are problems with the proceedings of the meeting, which ended after a record 6 hours, more than twice that of last year.
New TEPCO president interviewed
The new president of the Tokyo Electric Power Company has told NHK that he will do everything he can to control the crisis at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant.
Toshio Nishizawa assumed the post of TEPCO president on Tuesday. 西澤俊夫
Nishizawa said the victims of the nuclear disaster will be appropriately compensated, but that to make this happen, government support will be indispensable.
Commenting on 6 other nuclear reactors in Fukushima Prefecture whose fate remains in limbo, Nishizawa said the reactors wouldn't exist without consent of the local people. The 4 crippled reactors at the plant are to be decommissioned.
He also said cost-cutting, sales of the firm's assets and other drastic streamlining measures will proceed before utility charges are raised.
Nishizawa was apparently addressing concerns that fuel costs may rise as a result of increased thermal power generation and massive compensation payments.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011 16:13
Hosono wants to shrink evacuation zone in July
Japan's newly appointed minister in charge of the nuclear disaster says he hopes to shrink the evacuation zone around the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant by mid-July.
Goshi Hosono said in Tokyo on Tuesday that control over the facility has been improving little by little.
The plant's operator, Tokyo Electric Power Company, has said it aims to complete by July 17th the first stage of its plan to put the facility under control.
Hosono said that by then he hopes the reactor cooling system will have been stabilized and there will no longer be a risk of a hydrogen explosion. He said if that is confirmed, he wants to have some evacuees return home.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011 19:15
TEPCO restarts water-circulation cooling
The operator of the troubled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant has restarted its new water-recycling cooling system after repairing leaky pipes.
The Tokyo Electric Power Company, or TEPCO, activated a pump for the water injection system on Tuesday afternoon, after checking pipe connections and taking measures to prevent a sharp rise in water pressure.
The Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency says the system is working steadily.
TEPCO was forced to halt the system on Monday after only about 90 minutes of operation due to a water leak. The firm said the leak lasted for 2 minutes at most, and that about one ton of water seeped out. TEPCO said water burst from a weak connection, and that the firm had not taken originally planned measures to prevent a sharp rise in water pressure.
The system is designed to pump highly radioactive water out of reactor buildings, decontaminate it and circulate it back into the reactors as coolant.
TEPCO says the system is the key to cooling the reactors while decreasing the amount of contaminated water threatening to overflow.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011 19:06
Kan orders to draw up basic reconstruction plan
Prime Minister Naoto Kan has instructed a government task force for rebuilding areas devastated by the March 11th disaster to draw up a basic reconstruction plan by the end of July. Kan was addressing Tuesday's 1st meeting of the task force set up under legislation enacted last week.
The meeting was attended by all Cabinet members and the heads of local task forces from disaster-hit Iwate, Miyagi and Fukushima prefectures.
The chairman of a government advisory panel on reconstruction, Makoto Iokibe, briefed the meeting on a package of proposals it submitted to the prime minister on Saturday.
Kan said the panel's proposals have substance that could bear the test of time and that he wants the task force to draw up a basic plan by respecting the proposals.
Kan said the basic plan will be reflected in a 3rd supplementary budget for the current fiscal year. He also ordered the compiling of a bill to revise laws for creating special economic zones in the devastated areas to revitalize local industries.
The minister in charge of reconstruction, Ryu Matsumoto, said the taskforce will have a staff of 100 members and will earnestly listen to the opinions of the people of devastated areas so it can help them realize their hopes and dreams.
The basic plan is expected to include moving residences to higher locations and reconstructing ports, roads and other infrastructure destroyed by the tsunami.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011 20:07
TEPCO starts covering No.1 reactor building
The operator of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant has begun building a giant polyester shield over the damaged Number 1 reactor building to contain the spread of radiation.
One of the largest cranes in Japan has been brought to the site for the construction. It has a 140 meter-long arm that can lift up to 750 tons.
The crane will be used to install a fabric cover around the reactor building. Before that, it will be used to remove debris from the top of the building, which was shattered by a hydrogen explosion one day after the earthquake and tsunami on March 11th.
Tokyo Electric Power Company says that when the shield is installed, the entire structure will be about 54 meters high.
Meanwhile, offsite at Onahama Port about 50 kilometers from the nuclear plant, the utility is preassembling 62 steel components that will be joined to create a rigid frame. The frame will support one millimeter-thick polyester fiber panels.
The components will start arriving at the plant in July. Work to assemble them will be done by the crane. The utility says the process will minimize the number of workers who must spend time at the site and lessen their radioactive exposure. TEPCO hopes to complete the cover by late September.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011 20:39
TEPCO injects nitrogen into No.2 reactor
The Tokyo Electric Power Company began injecting nitrogen into the containment vessel of the No.2 reactor at the Fukushima nuclear plant on Tuesday night to prevent hydrogen explosions.
Hydrogen is generated when water in the reactor comes in contact with radiation. It's believed that hydrogen is building up inside the containment vessel.
As the reactor continues to be cooled, reaction between hydrogen and oxygen can result in an explosion, in the worst case scenario.
The utility firm has been pumping nitrogen into the No.1 reactor. But there's no knowing yet when it can start doing so at the No.3 reactor, because the plumbing work for nitrogen injections cannot be undertaken due to high-level radiation inside the reactor.
According to a roadmap to contain the crisis at the plant, the work of injecting nitrogen into the 3 reactors is scheduled to be complete by July 17th.
The spokesman for the Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency, Hidehiko Nishiyama, says the current situation is severe but workers at the plant will do their best to achieve the target on the roadmap.


Voices from around

. Daily Radiation Levels .  

. . . . .

Japan Times :

Circulation system tried on reactors
Tokyo Electric starts circulating decontaminated water to cool the three damaged reactors at the Fukushima No. 1 power complex.
(aaa, but that was yesterday ... )

Fukushima starts health checks
The Fukushima Prefectural Government begins health checkups in a long-term plan to gauge the impact of radiation exposure on its roughly 2 million residents.

Kan revamps Cabinet posts
Prime Minister Kan scrambles to make adjustments before launching the reconstruction agency and recruits a member of the Liberal Democratic Party to play a key role in it.

Tsunami-hit hospital reopens at clinic site

LDP in Fukushima goes antinuke
(LDP was the party that pushed TEPCO all these years ... )

YEN 350 billion crisis loan eyed for Chubu Electric

The courage to rebuild
Ikeda Daisuke
... More than three months have now passed since the March 11 earthquake and tsunami struck the Tohoku-Kanto region, leaving a trail of devastation of an unprecedented magnitude. The number of confirmed fatalities exceeds 15,000, with around 7,500 more still missing.
Each victim was someone's father, mother, child, relative or friend — each was an irreplaceable individual.
As a Buddhist, I have been offering my earnest prayers for their peaceful repose, as well as for the health, safety and well-being of all those affected by the earthquake, and for the success of relief and reconstruction efforts.

. . . . .

and take a look at America
Wildfire threatens Los Alamos nuclear laboratory
Wildfire ravaging the western US state of New Mexico now threatens the Los Alamos National Laboratory, the country's leading nuclear weapons research center.


poppy dolls ...
entangled in the seaweed
of Japan

tsunami –
the swirls of poppy dolls
and children

the families of Japan
dragged to sea

Don Baird



[ . BACK to TOP of this BLOG. ]

1 comment:

  1. Very sad.

    Very sad indeed.

    Beautiful and heart-tugging

    What a very sad haiku, Gabi!

    ... friends from Facebook, THANK YOU !