July 2012

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source : hsinping pan


Sunday, July 1, 2012

Ohi nuclear plant to go back line on Sunday
One of the reactors at the Ohi nuclear power plant in central Japan on Sunday will go back online.

This subject will continue for a while :
. - Restarting Reactors - INFO - .

Utilities required to buy renewable energy
Power companies in Japan will have to purchase electricity generated by renewable energy sources.

Ohi N0.3 reactor reaches criticality
A re-activated Japanese nuclear reactor reached criticality on Sunday for the first time in 15 months.
The reactor at the Ohi nuclear plant in Fukui Prefecture in central Japan will start generating electricity on Wednesday and will operate at full capacity four days later. ...

Ozawa and 50 others to leave DPJ
The former leader of the ruling Democratic Party and about 50 other lawmakers are expected to announce their intention to leave the party on Monday.


Monay, July 2, 2012

Cesium found in urine of Fukushima children

Feed-in tariff era gets under way
The feed-in tariff system for renewable energies takes effect to help promote their use and reduce Japan's dependency on nuclear power.

Cooling system fixed at Fukushima plant's No. 4 fuel pool

SoftBank-Kyocera solar plant gets off to soggy start amid downpour in Kyoto
The largest mega-solar project in Kyoto Prefecture is inaugurated by Softbank chief Masayoshi Son on the same day the Oi nuclear power station is scheduled for reactivation.

Companies' power-saving campaigns go into overdrive

Steam leak stops thermal station
Kansai Electric Power Company in western Japan has suspended the operation of a generator at a thermal power plant due to steam leaking from a boiler pipe.
Officials from the Himeji Daini thermal power plant in Hyogo Prefecture say an alarm went off at around 3:20 AM on Monday, warning the pipe in boilers at the No. 4 unit had become too hot.
They stopped the generator at 7:47 AM after finding steam leaking from the pipe.
The utility is investigating the cause of the leak. It says it will probably take around 10 days for recovery but will not greatly affect the power supply.
The incident happened on the first day of the summer power saving period. Starting Monday, Kansai Electric Power calling on businesses and households to save energy by more than 15 percent compared to 2010 usage.

High cesium levels in Fukushima freshwater fish

Japan's Environment Ministry says it detected higher levels of radioactive cesium in freshwater fish than marine fish in disaster-hit Fukushima Prefecture.
The ministry on Monday released the results of its study conducted from December last year to February this year. It took freshwater samples in rivers and lakes, as well as at 8 locations in the open sea.
The highest amount of cesium, 2,600 Becquerels per kilogram, was found in a goby freshwater fish taken from a river that flows from Iitate Village to Minamisoma City, north of the crippled plant.
Some water bugs, which freshwater fish eat, also showed high levels of 330 to 670 Becquerels per kilogram.
A type of flounder and bass caught off Iwaki City, south of the plant, registered 260 Becquerels per kilogram-- the highest level for marine fish.
A ministry official spoke about the differences in cesium levels in freshwater and marine fish. The official said marine fish are likely to get rid of cesium from their bodies more quickly as they have the ability to excrete salt.
The ministry will closely monitor freshwater fish as radioactive cesium may remain in their bodies for a longer period.

Conditions for nuclear regulatory body official
The Japanese government has decided that anyone with close ties to the nuclear industry will be excluded from a new regulatory body to be set up in September.
The new commission will consist of a chairperson and 4 experts. The experts will specialize in nuclear reactors or earthquakes.
The government's guidelines forbid anyone taking a commission post if they have worked for utilities, reactor makers or other nuclear-related businesses in the past 3 years. ...


Tuesday, July 3, 2012

- - - - - at 11:40
Earthquake M 5.4 in the Tokyo Bay
felt as 4 from Chiba to Shizuoka

Oi's reactor 3 first to go critical after Fukushima

'Temporary towns' in works for Fukushima's displaced

Evacuees give up on no-go zone

Iitate village decides on reconstruction plan
A village assembly in Japan's Fukushima Prefecture has adopted a roadmap for rebuilding the village before its residents can return home.


Wendesday, July 4, 2012

Rate hike too high, panel tells Tepco

Nuclear watchdog to bar industry insiders

Tokyo, Osaka 'could share urban functions'

Monju costs far surpass usual nukes

Tests to reprocess radioactive waste begin
A nuclear fuel reprocessing plant in Japan has restarted tests to prepare radioactive waste.
On Wednesday, test operations mixing radioactive wastewater with glass to make nuclear waste resumed at a plant in Rokkasho Village, Aomori Prefecture.
The plant is a reprocessing facility that takes spent nuclear fuel and extracts plutonium for use in the nuclear process again.
A test run by the plant was suspended 3 and half years ago after repeated failures. ...


Thursday, July 5, 2012

Ohi reactor back online
Ohi nuclear plant starts generating power

A nuclear reactor in central Japan has begun generating electricity after being reactivated on Sunday. - - - - -

NISA calls for more studies on faults under three Fukui nuclear plants

New Tepco chief inspects No. 2 plant

Diet report faults PM on Fukushima response

Japan's Diet panel investigating the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear accident has completed its report. It blames the Prime Minister's office for interfering with the accident response.
The Diet-appointed panel of experts approved the 600-page report in a meeting on Thursday. The report will be released later in the day after it is submitted to the Upper and Lower House of Parliament.
The report says the Prime Minister's office repeatedly interfered in emergency work to tackle the crisis and disrupted the chain of command. It also blames the government for failing to provide sufficient information to residents near the plant and causing confusion in their evacuation.
The Diet launched the panel in December 2011 to clarify the cause of the nuclear accident separately from the government's investigation panel. During its 6-month long inquiry, it summoned key witnesses and interviewed many others.
Those who testified at the panel include Naoto Kan, prime minister at the time of the accident and Masataka Shimizu, then president of the plant operator Tokyo Electric Power Company.

Report calls Fukushima disaster "man-made"

A Diet-appointed expert panel has released a report on the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear accident, calling it "an obviously man-made disaster."
The panel, set up by the Diet last December, submitted the more than 600-page report to both chambers of the Diet on Thursday.
The report says that for years there had been a number of missed opportunities to take steps to prevent the disaster. ...

SPEEDI would not have helped evacuation
A Diet-appointed panel investigating the Fukushima nuclear disaster says the government's system for predicting the spread of radiation is not accurate enough to be a basis for issuing evacuation orders.
The SPEEDI system uses weather information to predict the direction a nuclear plume will spread from a damaged plant. ...

TEPCO, government, react to panel report
The operator of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant has come out against a Diet-appoited panel's view that last year's earthquake, and not just the tsunami, may have damaged the plant.
Tokyo Electric Power Company spokesman Junichi Matsumoto told reporters on Thursday that operation records and other data do not suggest any damage came from the jolt. ...


Friday, July 6, 2012

Nuclear crisis man-made: Diet panel
The crisis at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant was man-made and not a natural disaster, fundamentally the result of a long-corrupt regulatory system that allowed Tokyo Electric Power Co. to put off critical safety measures, an independent Diet commission investigating the catastrophe concludes.

Inmates reap fallout redress from utility
At least 36 inmates at Fukushima Prison receive compensation from Tokyo Electric Power Co. over the nuclear disaster.

Giant panda Shin Shin gives birth at Ueno Zoo;
first cub born in 24 years

Arbitrator blasts TEPCO for delays
Arbitration officials have criticized Tokyo Electric Power Company for unfairly delaying legal settlements with victims of the Fukushima nuclear disaster.
At a news conference on Friday, members of an arbitration body set up by the government cited the case of an individual who ran a business near the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant.
They said the arbitrator proposed a plan to settle the person's compensation claims in March of this year. TEPCO didn't respond in a timely manner. And, it offered no reason for the delay. ...

Report: PM Office disrupted Fukushima response
A Diet-appointed panel has criticized the Prime Minister's Office for disrupting the emergency response to the accident at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant. ...

Hosono: Govt. did not disrupt Fukushima work
Japan's minister in charge of the nuclear crisis, Goshi Hosono, says the government did not interfere with the emergency response work at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant.
Hosono's remark on Friday came one day after an expert panel released its report on the Fukushima accident. The report criticized the Prime Minister's office for interfering with the emergency work, saying it caused confusion in the chain of command.
Hosono admitted that he and other government officials contacted Tokyo Electric Power's engineers at the plant a number of times to try and get information. He was an advisor to the prime minister at the time of the accident.
Hosono said the government had no choice as the Prime Minister's office was not receiving the information it needed to back up the emergency work by the power company.
Hosono also said he believes the lack of a clear division between the roles of the government and TEPCO added to the confusion in the wake of the accident.

Weekly Tokyo rally to protest restarted reactor
A rally was held on Friday evening in front of the prime minister's official residence in Tokyo. Demonstrators demanded a recently restarted nuclear reactor be shut down. .....

Rain can't dampen Friday-night antinuclear protest rally


Saturday, July 7, 2012

Reactor 1 quake-damaged?
The 9.0-magnitude quake that rocked the Fukushima No. 1 plant in March 2011 may have knocked out one of the emergency generators at reactor 1 before the site was engulfed by tsunami, according to a Diet panel's final report on the nuclear crisis. ... The panel suggested that some of the emergency generators at reactors 2 and 3 also might have been knocked out by the quake.
Tepco has consistently claimed that the initial tsunami that smashed into the power station at 3:35 p.m. on March 11 knocked out all the emergency generators, resulting in a total power outage. ...

Fundraising starts for 'miracle' pine

In wake of 3/11 disasters, successful Italian helps those who helped him
Restaurateur Elio Orsara mobilized friends, staff to help those hit by quake, tsunami

Noda vows to help Fukushima evacuees
Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda has visited a village in Fukushima Prefecture and promised to help villagers who evacuated after last year's nuclear disaster to return home.
The government lifted the no-entry designation for Kawauchi Village this past April. But only 20 percent of the residents have returned.
Noda met children at Kawauchi Village Elementary School to celebrate the Tanabata festival. ...


Sunday, July 8, 2012

Keeping an eye on TV news coverage of the nuke crisis

In the week immediately after March 11, 2011 — when a magnitude 9.0 earthquake and tsunami hit Tohoku and crippled the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant — most Japanese were closely watching TV news programs — amazed that a nuclear crisis was now threatening their lives.
..... Mamoru Ito, author of "Terebi wa Genpatsu Jiko wo Do Tsutaetanoka" ("How TV Reported the Nuclear Accident") and Professor of Media & Cultural Studies at Waseda University in Tokyo, suggests that though TV stations had sent hundreds of reporters to disaster-hit areas, including Fukushima, and had TV crews covering the government and Tepco 24-hours a day, their news almost always repeated the official line, of which the public were growing suspicious.


Ohi nuclear plant at 100% power output

Kansai Electric Power Company says the output of the electric generator at No. 3 reactor at its Ohi nuclear plant in Fukui Prefecture reached 1.18 million kilowatts at 11:20 PM on Saturday. ...

The sorry state of affairs in Japan


Monday, July 9, 2012

Atomic Energy Commission held undocumented, closed-door meetings for more than a decade
Former commissioners and government sources say important deliberations on nuclear energy policy transpired in this "study meetings."

Jellyfish problem at nuclear plants
Operators of Japanese nuclear power plants have experienced power reductions at times, caused by a swarm of jellyfish being sucked into water intakes.
Electricity at the plants is generated by steam-driven turbines. The steam is then sent to condensers to be cooled down with pipes in which seawater flows.
An influx of jellyfish to the intakes sometimes disrupts the supply of cooling water, forcing operators to reduce power output to curb heat generation.
Many plants now have filters or equipment to remove sea creatures at the intakes. But these measures do not work perfectly when a massive bloom occurs. ...

Govt. reports Ohi reactor is back to full capacity

The government and the operator of the Ohi nuclear power plant on the Sea of Japan coast say a reactivated reactor there is now operating at full capacity.
The No.3 reactor at the plant was restarted on July 1st after being offline for 15 months. It is the first reactor to be fired up after last year's meltdowns at the Fukushima Daiichi plant.

Noda Cabinet disapproval rate rises to record 56%

An NHK poll shows the approval rate for Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda's Cabinet remained at 27 percent, the same as the previous month. But the disapproval rate rose by 5 points to 56 percent, the highest level since his Cabinet was inaugurated last September.


Tuesday, July 10, 2012

- - - - - at 12:52 earthquake
magnitude 5.0, Northern Nagano

aftershocks of about M 3 at 12:56, 13:00, 13:08, 13:11 . . .

No cesium detected from Fukushima mothers' breast milk

Ishinomaki recovery impresses U.N. team

Just over 20 percent of 3/11 debris dealt with
Environment Minister Goshi Hosono says one-fifth of the debris generated by the March 11th earthquake and tsunami last year has been dealt with.
Hosono told reporters on Tuesday that, as of the end of June, 3.82 million tons, or 20.3 percent, of the rubble from the 3 most affected prefectures had been incinerated, buried or recycled.
The ministry estimates that the disaster left some 18.8 million tons of debris in the 3 prefectures. Of these, Iwate had 5.25 million tons, Miyagi, 11.54 million tons and Fukushima, 2.01 million tons.

Fuel rod container at Onagawa plant found damaged
The operator of the Onagawa nuclear plant in Miyagi Prefecture has discovered damage to fuel rod containers at the facility's No. 3 reactor.
Japan's nuclear safety agency has ordered Tohoku Electric Power Company to check and report on whether the damage was caused by the massive earthquake on March 11th last year.
The utility recently used an underwater camera to inspect the 4.5-meter-high metal containers in a fuel rod storage pool.
It found a 2-centimeter-long, several-millimeter-wide chip on one of the containers. It also found more than 12 places on other containers where pieces were missing.
Such damage has never been reported at a nuclear plant in Japan.
Tohoku Electric says the fuel rods are intact, and that there are no safety concerns because the reactor is out of operation.
But it says will investigate the damage in detail, and inspect the plant's No. 1 and 2 units.

NHK poll: majority wants less nuclear power
A new NHK poll shows a majority of respondents want to either reduce Japan's dependency on nuclear power to 15 percent or cut it entirely.
NHK's weekend poll drew responses from just over 1,000 people.
Nuclear power accounted for 26 percent of Japan's power supply as of 2010 before last year's nuclear accident.
In the NHK poll, 40 percent of respondents supported cutting the rate of nuclear power to 15 percent by 2030 -- one of 3 targets recently proposed by the government.
Thirty-four percent supported the 2nd proposed target of reducing nuclear power to zero. Twelve percent favored the 3rd option of capping the ratio at about 25 percent.
The government's latest decision to restart 2 reactors at the Ohi nuclear plant was viewed positively by 42 percent. Fifty-two percent were negative.
Asked if more reactors should go back online, 25 percent said yes and 27 percent said no, while 43 percent were undecided.


Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Quake left 20-meter crack in Fuji


Thursday, July 12, 2012

Torrential rain expected to hit swath of nation

Nuke watchdog to be launched in fall

A-bomb doctor warns of further Fukushima woes
Shuntaro Hida, 95 years

TEPCO to release footage of video conferences
The operator of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant is set to release footage of video conferences held as the nuclear disaster unfolded last year. The meetings took place between the utility's headquarters and workers trying to contain the accident.
..... The officials say they will select how much video to release, and how, citing concerns over privacy as some of the employees shown are not in management positions.


Friday, July 13, 2012

18 dead, 8 missing, heavy Kyushu rain
Torrential rains have lashed Kyushu island in western Japan, leaving 18 dead and 8 missing. The meteorological agency says the region has never experienced such severe rain and warns of further rainfall.
- - - and more heavy rain in the forecast for today ...

Tepco told to air footage of Kan's nuke crisis rage

Fatigue from living the life of evacuees proving fatal

Government to conduct radiation tests on rice at 40,000 locations in 2012
Govt. draws up rice inspection plan
Japan plans to strictly check rice from areas where more than 50 becquerels of radioactive cesium per kilogram of the crop was detected last year.

Robot probe detects high radiation at No.3 reactor
The operator of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant has detected high levels of radiation in the basement of the No. 3 reactor, with a maximum dose of 360 millisieverts per hour.
... Engineers lost control of the remote-controlled robot after around 3 hours of operation. They say there are problems with the connecting cable and they've been unable to regain control.

TEPCO to remove rods from No.4 fuel pool
The operator of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant will soon start test runs for removing fuel rods from a storage pool of the No. 4 reactor.
..... TEPCO will also check if there's any damage to the metal container used to store the fuel rods. This is a concern because seawater was used to cool the reactor after last year's accident.
TEPCO says it cannot reveal the date of the test for security reasons.

Radiation exposure in Fukushima restudied
Japanese researchers say the maximum radiation exposure of adult residents in Fukushima after the nuclear plant accident there was below the international safety standard.
The researchers at Hirosaki University in northern Japan examined the thyroid glands of 62 Fukushima residents in April last year, soon after the accident. In their initial report released in March, they said the maximum exposure level was 87 millisieverts.
The team reexamined the exposure levels by using detailed data, including that on the spread of nuclear substances called radioactive plumes after the accident.

In their latest report, the researchers said the maximum exposure was 33 millisieverts for adults and 23 millisieverts for those under the age of 20.
The levels were less than half of previously released figures, and lower than an internationally accepted limit of 50 millisieverts.
One of the researchers, Professor Shinji Tokonami, says the latest results are highly reliable because they were based on more accurate data than before.
Tokonami adds that the health conditions of children should be continuously monitored as they are at higher risk of thyroid radiation exposure.

Kyushu drenched by heavy rain
Unusually heavy rain continues to drench Japan's southwestern region of Kyushu.
At least 20 people are reported dead and 7 missing in Kumamoto and Oita Prefectures following what weather officials called unprecedented heavy rain.
About 15,000 people have been instructed to evacuate in Hita City in Oita Prefecture as the Kagetsu River is feared to flood.
Also in Oita, evacuation advisories have been issued for nearly 15,000 people in Taketa City as well as about 5,000 in Nakatsu City, where the Yamakuni River has overflowed.

Iitate villagers seek compensation from TEPCO
A group of nuclear accident evacuees in Fukushima has filed for compensation of more than 50 million dollars from Tokyo Electric Power Company for radiation exposure and other damages.
The 159 residents from the Nagadoro district in Iitate Village filed the claim on Friday with a state-backed legal arbitrator. ...
... As of early July, the arbitrator said it had received more than 3,000 complaints. About 10 percent have been settled.

Panel: Unable to get details on radiation release
NHK has learned that a government panel of experts will say it has been unable to specify exactly how the radioactive release occurred at a reactor of the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant.
On March 15th, 4 days after the breakdown of the Fukushima Daiichi plant, its No. 2 reactor appeared to release the largest amount of radioactive substances since the start of the disaster.
..... Noting that an investigation using robots has just begun in the No.2 reactor, Professor Koji Okamoto at the University of Tokyo Graduate School says available information is still insufficient.
He also says the investigation should be continued with help from experts from abroad.

Govt. panel calls for power market liberalization

A government panel has come up with a draft plan to reform Japan's power system.


Saturday, July 14, 2012

Japan's 'man-made' nuclear fiasco !!!

Test fishing under way off Fukushima

Fishermen in Fukushima, Japan, have begun a new round of test catches of marine products. The fishermen hope to be able to put them on the market if they prove safe in terms of radioactive materials following last year's nuclear accident.
Early on Saturday, fishermen from Soma City took to the sea on board 6 boats and sank baskets with attached bait in waters about 60 kilometers offshore.
They will catch 2 kinds of octopus and a type of shellfish. The hauls will be tested for radioactive contamination next week.


Sunday, July 15, 2012

240,000 evacuated amid Kyushu deluge
Some 240,000 people from about 85,000 households in Kyushu were told to evacuate as storms that have already killed 22 people continued to dump more rain on the region Saturday, local authorities said.

Five cities named alternative capitals in case Tokyo devastated by next Big One
A government panel will recommend that the central government transfer its functions to one of five major cities, including Osaka and Nagoya, if an earthquake devastates the capital, according to a draft interim report.

Tepco chief seeks swift rate hike deal

Aging Village shows the way with switch to solar

Eighty kilometers from Oi, Fukui Prefecture, is the village of Sanno, Hyogo Prefecture — 11 households, population 42, average age 60 plus.
..... On March 31, the village of Sanno went solar. ... and the 216 panels began generating electricity on March 31.
They are expected to generate 40,000 kwh annually. Given that the average household consumes 3,400 kwh in a year, that's enough for 12 households. Sanno has 11.


Monday, July 16, 2012

Public reactor hearing rocked by alleged government shill
A public hearing in Sendai on future nuclear policy is disrupted when a Tohoku Electric official inadvertently selected as one of nine citizen speakers is blasted as a government shill.

Dementia dire among elderly in quake zone



Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Massive Tokyo rally decries atomic power
Tens of thousands of people rally under a scorching sun in Tokyo to demand an end to nuclear power as demonstrations against reactor restarts grow.

Alarms go off during unit 4's restart in Oi
Alarms sound at the Oi power plant in Fukui Prefecture, raising doubts about efforts to restart the second reactor since the Fukushima nuclear crisis erupted in March 2011.

Fukushima reopens first beach to swimming since nuclear disaster

Radioactive village rezoned into 3 parts
A village in Fukushima Prefecture has been divided into 3 areas according to accessibility.
One area has been fenced off because of a high level of radioactive contamination.
In Iitate village, full-fledged decontamination work will start focusing on homes so residents can return. But there is no plan yet to decontaminate wooded land and paddy fields which cover 85 percent of the village.

Power usage surges in scorching heat
Power usage across Japan has surged amid scorching heat in much of the country.
Power usage on Tuesday reached 91 percent of capacity for Tokyo Electric Power Company, which provides power to the capital and nearby prefectures.
Usage in central Japan hit 93 percent for Chubu Electric Power Company, and 90 percent for Hokuriku Electric.
Figures in western Japan were close to 90 percent.

Hot weather continues across Japan
Much of Japan continues to swelter, with temperatures topping 39 degrees Celsius near Tokyo.
The Meteorological Agency announced on Tuesday that the rainy season has ended in much of western and eastern Japan. The announcement came 8 to 9 days later than last year, but 4 days earlier than normal.
Temperatures exceeded 35 degrees Celsius at some 70 locations across the country on Tuesday. 2 cities in Gunma Prefecture, north of Tokyo, were hottest at 39.2 and 39.1 degrees respectively.
Hot weather is expected to continue for at least a week.
The Meteorological Agency is urging precautions against heatstroke.

Experts: ground under nuke plants needs assessment
Experts have asked the government to assess cracks under the ground below and around nuclear power plants. They want to ascertain whether the gaps are active faults or not.
The Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency is listening to opinions from geologists and other experts about breaches around nuclear plants throughout Japan.
The move came after some scientists recently pointed out the possibility that the fissures near the No. 2 reactor of the Tsuruga nuclear plant in Fukui Prefecture, central Japan, could be active faults. ...


Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Shika nuclear plant may sit on active fault
Government research indicates the fault running beneath the Shika nuclear power station may be active, raising questions about the utility's claim in the late 1990s to the contrary.
Hokuriku Electric Power Co.'s Shika Nuclear Power Station

Consumer panel tells Tepco to cut pay 30%
Tokyo Electric Power should cut salaries by at least 30 percent instead of 20 percent for regular employees and 25 percent for management before trying to push an electricity rate hike on households, a Consumer Affairs Agency panel says.

TEPCO removes unused fuel rods from pool

The operator of the damaged Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant has begun removing two unused fuel rods from a storage pool in the No. 4 reactor.
Tokyo Electric Power Company, or TEPCO, began the work on Wednesday as a test for eventually removing all 1,535 fuel rods stored in the pool, including 204 unused ones. ...

Major retailer promotes disaster region products
Major Japanese retailer Seven & I Holdings has launched a campaign to help with reconstruction of the region affected by the 2011 quake and tsunami.
The retail group on Wednesday started selling at its 400 outlets in Japan items made using produce from the 3 disaster-hit prefectures and original goods produced in the region.
The products include food containing rice from Fukushima Prefecture, as well as ready-to-eat noodles made at a factory there.


Thursday, July 19, 2012

Fuel rod removed from Fukushima plant pool
Tokyo Electric Power Co. removes one of two unused nuclear fuel assemblies from the spent-fuel pool of reactor 4 at its Fukushima No. 1 power station.

Fukushima University to open radiation research center

2nd reactor reaches criticality
Kansai Electric Power Company says the Ohi plant's number-4 reactor began its self-sustaining chain reaction on Thursday morning. The number-3 reactor has been operating at maximum capacity for the past 10 days.


Friday, July 20, 2012

Tepco is ordered to cut rate hike
The government plans to order Tokyo Electric Power Co. to trim its rate hike for households to an average of 8.47 percent from its planned 10.28 percent after determining the utility can further reduce salaries to limit the additional cost burden on consumers.

Radioactive waste disposal outside Fukushima a vague vow


Saturday, July 21, 2012

Damages rules set for nuclear crisis evacuees
The government Friday unveiled guidelines on compensation for real estate in evacuation zones near the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant, calling for full payment of damages to people who won't be able to return home more than six years since the crisis started.

Tepco to review Fukushima report amid contradictions

Fukushima contractor covers up worker exposure
A subcontractor has been found to have instructed workers at the damaged Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant to underreport the amount of radiation exposure by placing a lead cover on their dosimeters.
On Saturday, health ministry officials inspected an office on the plant premises where worker exposure data are stored. The office belongs to the company that provided work to the subcontractor.
The subcontractor, "Buildup", was in charge of applying antifreeze to pipes in locations where high radiation levels had been detected.
..... The health ministry suspects that the company may have violated the law that requires dosimeters to be used properly to protect workers.

How worker exposure is controlled

Japanese health authorities set the permissible cumulative level for radiation exposure for workers at nuclear power plants at 50 millisieverts per year to protect their safety.
If their exposure exceeds the limit, they are not allowed to work inside radiation control areas.
Employers violating the rule can be punished with prison terms of up to 6 months or fines of up to 500,000 yen or about 6,370 dollars. ...
Build-up President Takashi Wada says he's aware of the gravity of the issue.

Tepco crisis workers faced exposure scam


Sunday, July 22, 2012

. . . . . at 13:46 Earthquake in Hokkaido, Tokachi
十勝地方南部 Magnitude 5.1

Industry team set up to deal with nuclear accident
Japan's electric power companies are planning to jointly organize emergency response teams to deal with accidents at their nuclear power plants.
The Federation of Electric Power Companies of Japan says the first team will be formed by next March. ... The federation chairman Makoto Yagi says forming emergency teams is part of efforts to increase the safety of Japan's nuclear power plants to the world's highest level.

Lawmakers in Japan outline denuclearization bill
Former Japanese prime minister Naoto Kan and other governing party lawmakers have announced an outline of a bill that would end Japan's reliance on nuclear energy by 2025.
The draft outline says nuclear power generation could lead to infinite damages in the event of an accident. It adds that lack of final disposal measures will end up leaving future generations piles of radioactive waste.
It calls for establishing alternative power sources and reducing the number of operating nuclear power plants to zero.
The draft also calls for promotion of solar, wind, and other sources of renewable energy to cut carbon dioxide emissions.
The outline also mandates the central government to create jobs in communities that host nuclear plants.
The secretary general of the governing Democratic Party, Azuma Koshiishi, has been asking Kan to compile a plan on future energy sources.
The former prime minister said he intends to seek support within his party and that he wants to submit the bill with support from the opposition.


Monday, July 23, 2012

'Miracle pine' preservation plan questioned over \150 million cost
Rikuzentakata's plan to preserve the "miracle pine" that survived last year's tsunami opens a debate over its \150 million price tag.

Government panel releases Fukushima report
A government panel investigating the nuclear accident at the Fukushima Daiichi plant says the operator of the plant lacked a sense of crisis and imagination for possible tsunami.
It says Tokyo Electric Power Company should realize that Japan is prone to natural disasters and change its attitude toward disaster-preparedness.
The panel of government-appointed experts submitted its final report on Monday.
The report criticized the way the utility handled the accident at the Daiichi plant.
The panel is urging the government to continue its probe. It says the cause of the accident has not been fully disclosed.

Panel blames local govt. for hospital deaths

The government panel on the Fukushima nuclear accident has called for better disaster response management, after 50, mostly bedridden, elderly people left behind near the Fukushima Daiichi plant died.
The panel's final report issued on Monday says about 230 people were stranded in Futaba Hospital and an adjacent nursing home in Okuma Town one day after the nuclear disaster unfolded on March 12th last year.
The facilities are located about 4 kilometers from the plant, and within the 10-kilometer evacuation zone. ...

Noda vows no more Fukushimas
Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda says he expects to see the government's new nuclear regulatory body play a central role in preventing reoccurrences of the Fukushima nuclear disaster.
Noda received the final report on the Fukushima disaster from a government panel on Monday.
He stressed that he would take the panel's findings extremely seriously, and leave no stone unturned in his response.

Referendum to be requested on reactor restart
Hamaoka, Shizuoka.


Tuesday, July 24, 2012

How I learned to stop worrying and embrace the atom
Fukushima 'crisis' changed my mind on nuclear power

. . . . .

Government, Tepco again hit for nuke crisis
The meltdowns in Fukushima were caused by a government and a utility that were ill-prepared for an emergency because they were devoted to the myth of nuclear safety, an independent panel concludes.

Shizuoka pressed on Hamaoka

Fukushima kids absent as schools to reopen
A town in Fukushima Prefecture is expecting only 18 percent of children to return to local schools when they reopen for the first time since last year's nuclear accident.
The town of Hirono is located 20 to 25 kilometers from the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant. Most residents evacuated after the March 11th disaster.
Town authorities began calling for their return after an evacuation advisory was lifted last September. . . . . .

Prosecutors to accept nuclear accident complaints

Prosecutors in Japan have reportedly decided to accept criminal complaints against the government and Tokyo Electric Power Company over the Fukushima nuclear accident. ...

New decontamination device for Fukushima plant
A new decontamination device that can remove a large variety of radioactive substances, including strontium, has been developed for the defunct Fukushima Daiichi plant. ...

Causes of largest radioactive leaks may be found

Experts say work to lower the core pressure at one of reactors may have led to the largest radioactive leaks from the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant in March last year.
Among the 4 reactors at the Fukushima plant, the No. 2 reactor leaked the largest amount of radioactivity according to nuclear disaster monitoring.
Researchers from the University of Tokyo, the Japan Atomic Energy Agency and other experts have examined the crisis response log at the reactor facility. They also checked radiation levels in surrounding areas.
They found radiation levels rose sharply 3 times at monitoring posts 10 kilometers south of the plant over a period of 5 hours during the night of March 14th.
These rises came 1 hour after each time workers at the No. 2 reactor released steam from the core to lower its pressure. The plant employees did so to protect the reactor. . . . . .


Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Probe targets ploy to shield dosimeters
The government is investigating whether dosimeters worn by workers containing the crisis at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant were manipulated to underreport their radiation exposure.

Tsunami-hit structures eyed as memorials

Japan's accountability crisis
- - - and
The eerie silence of Japan's dying democracy

Fukui Governor approves Ohi monitoring
The governor of Fukui prefecture has praised monitoring systems put in place when the prefecture's Ohi nuclear power plant was restarted this month.


Thursday, July 26, 2012

Tepco sets date to start accepting victims' claims

Tepco gets OK to raise electricity rates 8.46%

Mihama reactor 2 turns 40 years; future uncertain

Seams not checked for 25 years at Shika
Seams beneath the Shika nuclear plant were judged safe 25 years ago, and have not been reassessed since.
Hokuriku Electric, the operator of the Shika plant, applied for government permission to build the plant's No.1 reactor in January 1987. ...
- - -
Ishikawa governor demands explanation
The governor of Ishikawa Prefecture says he wants to know why the government ordered the probe of a seam it deemed safe 25 years ago.
Masanori Tanimoto on Wednesday called for the Shika plant's operator to carry out the probe ordered by the nuclear safety agency. ... Tanimoto said the agency should clarify its position rather than believe whatever scientists say.
- - -
Hokuriku Electric promises in-depth check-up
The president of Hokuriku Electric Power Company Susumu Kyuwa has said the utility takes very seriously the government directive to conduct in-depth safeguarding analysis.
He added he believes the safety of his company's nuclear power plant has been established by the government's own testing.
Kyuwa noted the utility will activate thermal power plants in response to consumers' concerns over possible power shortages.

IAEA to assess quake resistance at Onagawa plant
The International Atomic Energy Agency will examine a nuclear plant in northeastern Japan next week to see how it was affected by last year's March 11th earthquake.
Data at some nuclear plants in northern and eastern Japan show that the intensity of the quake exceeded the maximum level assumed by the plants' designers.
..... The IAEA has surveyed damage at the defunct Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant, and monitored decontamination activities in Fukushima Prefecture.
But this is the first time since last year's disaster that it will assess quake resistance at a nuclear plant in Japan.


Friday, July 27, 2012

Tunnel eyed to probe fault at nuke plant
Hokuriku Electric is planning to tunnel under the reactor 1 building at its Shika nuclear power plant to investigate a suspected active fault.

No. 1 workers' radiation doses soared 16-fold

Fukushima probes leave questions

Cows pose road hazard, Tepco told

Much of Japan has scorching weather

Sweltering heat continued to cover many parts of the country on Thursday, with the mercury hitting 38 degrees Celsius in central Japan.
The meteorological agency says a prevailing high pressure system helped push up temperatures to 35 degrees or higher at 110 locations in eastern and western Japan.
Daytime highs reached 38 degrees in Tajimi, Gifu Prefecture, 37.8 degrees in Kuwana, Mie Prefecture, and 35.4 degrees in central Tokyo. ...

Ministry admits faults in its Fukushima responses
Japan's education ministry has admitted that its response to the Fukushima nuclear accident was inappropriate in terms of informing residents and addressing parents' concerns about radiation exposure.
A report issued on Friday refers to the government decision not to release radiation maps provided by the United States immediately after the accident began in March 2011.
The report says the government did not have a manual on disclosing results of surveys by foreign organizations. ...
... Vice education minister Takashi Kii
Kii said ministry officials must use their imagination and act without waiting for orders.

Decontamination begins in Fukushima
Japan's government has begun removing soil and other items contaminated by radioactive substances released during last year's nuclear accident at the Fukushima Daiichi power plant.
The work began on Friday in a part of Tamura City that was reclassified in April from a no-go zone to one where residents could return to live in the near future. ...


Saturday, July 28, 2012

Ministry tries to justify withholding SPEEDI fallout forecast data from public
The science ministry claims it was appropriate to withhold radiation fallout forecast data from the public immediately after the meltdown disaster started at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant in March 2011 because the data were "based on assumptions."

Anti-nuclear meeting held again in Fukushima
A major Japanese anti-nuclear group has called for support for people affected by the accident at the Fukushima Daiichi plant and decommissioning of all nuclear plants in Japan.
... The organizer says about 1,000 people from around the country took part in this year's event....

Extreme heat continues in Japan
Most parts of Japan are experiencing record heat. On Saturday alone, four people died of heatstroke. . . . . .


Sunday, July 29, 2012

Horse chase festival reinstated in Fukushima after decontamination

Effect of spiritual force on the post-3/11 crisis

Large anti-nuclear rally held in Tokyo
A large rally has been held in Tokyo to protest the restart of a nuclear plant in Fukui Prefecture.
The demonstrators gathered in Hibiya Park in central Tokyo on Sunday. They were protesting the recent resumption of the No.3 and No.4 reactors at the Ohi nuclear plant on the Sea of Japan coast.
The organizer said 200,000 people took part. Police said the figure was 14,000.
Thousands of people have joined the group's weekly Friday protests in front of the Prime Minister's office.
The largest anti-nuclear rally since the Fukushima Daiichi accident was held in Tokyo on July 16th.

Fukushima festival fully resumes after two years
Armored horse riders fought to capture sacred flags hurled into the air at a summer festival in the disaster-hit Soma region of Fukushima Prefecture on Sunday.
The annual festival was first held more than 1,000 years ago to train warriors and is designated as an important intangible ethnic heritage of Japan. ...


Monday, July 30, 2012

Antinuke demonstrators form human chain around Diet building
Demonstrators form a human chain around the Diet building to protest atomic power and pressure Prime Minister Noda to halt the restart of nuclear reactors.

Evacuation drills held for huge tsunami
Evacuation drills for possible huge tsunami have been held across Japan since last year's deadly East Japan earthquake and tsunami. On Sunday, 2,000 people took part in a drill in western Japan.
The drill in Tanabe City, Wakayama, assumed that a massive quake off the Pacific coast caused tsunami up to 12 meters.

IAEA experts start probe at Onagawa plant
A delegation from the International Atomic Energy Agency has begun inspecting a nuclear power plant in northeastern Japan.
The Onagawa plant in Miyagi Prefecture was one of several that were hit by the March 11th earthquake last year.
The team's goal is to collect data on the quake's impact on the plant's structure and electric systems. ...

TEPCO stages drill against major Tokyo quake

Tokyo Electric Power Company has held a large-scale drill on the assumption that a major earthquake occurred under central Tokyo.
About 300 people, including TEPCO's new management, took part in the drill on Monday.
The exercise was based on a scenario that a magnitude 7.3 quake had struck beneath Koto Ward near Tokyo Bay. That equals 6 plus on the Japanese seismic scale from 0 to 7. Under the scenario, power transmission lines and substations in the Tokyo metropolitan area were damaged.

Railways asked to cut electricity 20% by 2030
The Japanese government has asked the country's railway companies to cut electricity consumption by about 20 percent by 2030 in an attempt to save energy.
The transport ministry made the request at a meeting with railway operators on Monday.
Railway services are big users of power in Japan. They consume more than 17 billion kilowatt-hours annually, which is equivalent to 3.4 million households' power use.
The ministry's plan asks railway operators to store electricity generated by trains' braking systems.
The trains have braking systems that cut power to the motors. During braking, the wheels keep turning and their rotation generates surplus electricity. It is this power the government hopes to harness. ...

Anti-tsunami work at Hamaoka plant extended


Tuesday, July 31, 2012

IAEA inspects Onagawa nuke plant
The International Atomic Energy Agency begins inspecting the Onagawa nuclear plant to check for damage and take notes on what went well and what didn't when the facility safely shut down after the March 11 quake rocked Miyagi Prefecture last year.

Radiation in debris hampers disposal in Fukushima
The Japanese government is reviewing a plan to dispose of disaster debris around the defunct Fukushima nuclear plant after facing strong local opposition.

TEPCO receives public funds injection
Tokyo Electric Power Company has received one trillion yen or around 13 billion dollars in government funds, putting the operator of the Fukushima nuclear power plant under effective state control.
The power company asked for taxpayer money to bolster its finances under a rehabilitation program created with a state-backed bailout fund in May.
The injection on Tuesday came in the form of Tokyo Electric's issuance of preferred stocks to the government.
This gave the government up to 75 percent of the utility's voting rights.



Iwate - International Daruma

source : kon-kon_may

. - Restarting Reactors - INFO - .

. . Bulletins from NHK WORLD . .
. . Japan Times - JT . .

June 2012



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  1. Even Noda startled by size of anti-nuclear protest outside his office

    Thousands rallied outside the prime minister’s office in Tokyo’s Nagatacho district to protest the government's decision to restart two reactors at the Oi nuclear power plant in Fukui Prefecture.

    The No. 3 and No. 4 reactors, operated by Kansai Electric Power Co., had been shut down for regular maintenance inspections. The No. 3 reactor is due to go back online on July 1.


  2. Radioactive river mud threatens lakes, Tokyo Bay
    July 05, 2012

    Lakes across eastern Japan are being contaminated with radioactive cesium from the crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant, and scientists are warning of a growing problem in Tokyo Bay.

    Radioactive mud carried down rivers is slowly accumulating in the lakes, in some cases making fish and shellfish dangerous to eat.

    In March, a maximum cesium concentration of 9,550 becquerels per kilogram was detected in mud on the bottom of the Bizengawa river, 1.65 kilometers from where it flows into Japan’s second-largest lake, Lake Kasumigaura in Ibaraki Prefecture.

    A month later, the highest reading was 800 meters closer to the lake and had increased to 9,980 becquerels per kilogram.