CDC Official: “Public health emergency in the US” from Fukushima radioactive material — Gov’t wanted to quarantine people contaminated with radiation, but had no authority — Emergency Operations Center activated for first time ever due to nuclear incident

Published: November 26th, 2014 at 10:14 pm ET


The Fukushima radiological emergency and challenges identified for future public health responses, Charles W. Miller, Chief of CDC’s Radiation Studies Branch, 2012: On 11 March 2011… a cascade of events was initiated that led to radionuclide releases causing widespread radioactive contamination… Radioactive material from Japan was subsequently transmitted to locations around the globe, including the U.S. The levels of radioactive material that arrived in the U.S. were never large enough to be a concern for health effects, but the presence of this material in the environment was enough to create a public health emergency in the U.S. The radiation safety and public health communities in the U.S. are identifying challenges they faced in responding to this incident…

Report on the 48th Annual Meeting of the National Council on Radiation Protection and Measurements (NCRP) – Presentation by Charles W. Miller, Chief of CDC’s Radiation Studies Branch: The CDC activated its Emergency Operations Center (EOC) for the first time ever for a real world radiation incident. EOC activities were even more intense than for the swine flu pandemic in 2009. Cargo and passengers from Japan headed to the U.S. were screened, and there were contaminated passengers (and cargo). However CDC (nor anyone else) has authority to quarantine passengers contaminated with radiation… Communication was a problem. At first [the “A-Team”, an advisory team for environment, food, and health comprised of personnel from EPA, CDC, USDA, and FDA] had to speak “off the record”. Also noted was that… Early PAGs were guidelines, not rules… The final point was that Fukushima was a great tragedy for Japan; it also became a public health emergency for the U.S.

See also: [intlink id=”cdc-launches-zombie-apocalypse-preparedness-campaign-based-fukushima” type=”post”]{{empty}}[/intlink]

Published: November 26th, 2014 at 10:14 pm ET


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195 comments to CDC Official: “Public health emergency in the US” from Fukushima radioactive material — Gov’t wanted to quarantine people contaminated with radiation, but had no authority — Emergency Operations Center activated for first time ever due to nuclear incident

  • rogerthat

    The Dounreay Dilemma – Disposing of Scotland’s Toxic Leftovers

    In the 1950s Dounreay was at the centre of Britain’s nuclear energy ambitions. Then, during the 1990s it served as a reprocessing hub for nuclear material sent from power plants and research centres in Australia, Germany, Belgium and beyond.

    Today, Scotland faces the feat of demolishing the iconic nuclear power station, a complex task which is set to cost around £1.6 billion.

    What happens to Dounreay’s noxious leftovers?

    One of the major issues faced by planners is the fact that Dounreay is still home to tonnes upon tonnes of radioactive waste, nuclear fuel and contaminated material. It may seem bizarre, but the current solution involves the toxic material being ferried back to its country of origin…

    • rogerthat

      … As well as shipping out toxic material, the Dounreay plant is also undergoing some significant changes in the lead up to its decommission date.

      The Dounreay Fast Reactor (DFR) and the Prototype Fast Reactor (PFR) are both being prepared for dismantling while some new additions are also being rolled out in order to safely store low-level radioactive material.

      This includes the construction of two colossal vaults at a cost of £20 million. Each will require hundreds of tonnes of steel and be capable of holding up to 450 double decker buses.

      After the low-level radioactive material has been placed in the vaults they will remain off limits for 300 years.

      It’s all got to go!

      While Dounreay will house low-level radioactive material, authorities have decided that the cost of handling higher risk waste is simply too expensive.

      Breeder is one such material which will be transported off site. Dounreay’s stockpile comes in the form of uranium metal cylinders measuring 35mm in diameter and 150mm in length.

      As part of the decommissioning plan 44 tonnes of breeder will be transported to Cumbria on a train accompanied by an armed guard escort.

      While the project cost a huge £60 million the NDA maintained that it was still a cheaper option than processing the material at Dounreay.

      With a decommissioning date of 2022-25 the world can only wait and see what other quandaries could be in store for Dounreay over the next decade.

    • Dounreay Fast Neutron Breeder Reactor Issues, Problems And Costs Prove Fast Breeders Are Not Commercially Viable Or Cost Effective

  • rogerthat

    Nuclear power: Desperately seeking plutonium

    NASA has 35 kilograms of plutonium-238 to power its deep-space missions — but that will not get it very far.

    Alexandra Witze
    25 November 2014

    Ken Wilson peers through a yellow-tinted window at the clutter of bottles and chemical equipment on the other side. He is protected from the radiation their contents are giving off by five thick panes of glass interspersed with some 400 litres of oil.

    Working in such a ‘hot cell’ is routine for Wilson, who is one of the top nuclear technicians here at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) in Tennessee. …

  • rogerthat

    Fukushima Alert! Thousands of Tons of ‘Plutonium Tainted’ Liquid Leaking Into Ocean!

    Bella Knox

    November 26, 2014

    2min 24sec video

  • rogerthat

    State supports new Hanford facility, questions where money will be found

    Tri-City HeraldNovember 27, 2014

    The state of Washington supports the concept of a proposed new facility that would allow Hanford’s vitrification plant to start treating some waste sooner, but has concerns about how the Department of Energy will pay for the facility.

    The proposed Low-Activity Waste Pretreatment System, LAWPS, would prepare some low-activity waste now held in underground tanks to be treated at the vitrification plant. The waste could then bypass the plant’s Pretreatment Facility, where construction has stopped until technical issues are resolved…

  • rogerthat

    Published on Nov 28, 2014

    Even after 29 years of the world's worst industrial disaster, the toxic waste of Bhopal Gas tragedy is still lying at the Union Carbide plant waiting for disposal.

    – 55 sec

  • Please Get the Rad Word Out, People!

    Fukushima Business Cards 4 U! And everyone else, too!

    These nifty cards are easy to print and pass out.
    Leave randomly, where ever you please. Distribute liberally.
    Side 2 stands alone with links!

    31,037 downloads since June 2014.
    1358 days since Fukushima.

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    Thanks, Everyone!

  • rogerthat

    Atoms in Japan
    Japan's Leading Nuclear Information Source

    25 November 2014

    Thin Reasoning in NRA’s Argument for Active Fault under Tsuruga-2

    On November 19, a panel of experts of Japan’s Nuclear Regulation Authority (NRA) reaffirmed its judgment that Tsuruga-2 (PWR, 1160MWe) of The Japan Atomic Power Company (JAPC) lies directly above an active fault. It will be impossible to restart the reactor as long as that decision is not overturned.

    The latest meeting of the panel of experts, which was held without JAPC representatives being given permission to attend, rejected the massive amount of survey data presented by the JAPC to show no active fault exists.

    Meanwhile, there was scant demonstration of supporting data and interpretations at the meeting indicating the existence of an active fault, casting huge doubt on the “scientific fairness” and “open decision-making” espoused by the NRA…

  • rogerthat

    November 27, 2014

    Professor Julia West was invited to speak at a workshop at Fukushima, Japan by the Japan Atomic Energy Agency in October 2014. She spoke on the challenges faced by scientists in communicating their efforts to local people.

    The disastrous earthquake and tsunami of 11 March 2011 devastated the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station (“F1”) in Japan.

    This resulted in a discharge of radioactive material into the air which, despite much fallout occurring over sea, led to significant contamination of a large part of Fukushima and surrounding prefectures and required evacuation of residents.

    The Japan Atomic Energy Agency (JAEA) plays a key role in the research associated with remediation of the contaminated area around the F1 site, working together with a number of Japanese and international organisations and research institutes.

    JAEA hosts an annual international workshop, inviting overseas experts to bring their experience to Japan so that clean up efforts are subject to international review and validation.

    The second meeting took place in Fukushima over 6-8 October. 2015.

    Professor West was invited by JAEA to speak at both the 1st and 2nd meetings on technical and communication issues.

    • rogerthat

      March 2014 – Present (9 months)Nottingham, United Kingdom
      Julia West is Principal at West-Consult. She has a PhD in Geomicrobiology with over 30 years’ experience working on diverse projects relating to how humans use the geological environment, particularly for waste disposal. Julia is internationally recognised not only for her broad experience in radioactive waste management and carbon capture and storage (CCS), but also for her ground-breaking geomicrobiological, ecological and natural analogue studies. She has recently pioneered cross comparisons between radioactive waste and CCS technologies. Julia has provided advice and expertise to national and international organisations and has long experience in advisory groups and programme committees. She also has a great interest in geoscience communication, lecturing and writing on this topic, particularly in the context of radioactive waste disposal and was a British Association for the Advancement of Science Media Fellow with the BBC Radio Science Unit.
      Julia is the author/co-author of over 200 technical papers, reports, articles, scientific papers and book chapters. She is an Honorary Research Associate at the British Geological Survey and Honorary Visiting Professor of Geomicrobiology at the University of Manchester.

  • rogerthat

    26 Nov (NucNet): The European Union today announced a €315 billion investment plan which will help “remove the fear factor” from high-risk and high-capital investments including those in energy and energy networks, the European Commission’s vice-president for jobs, growth, investment and competitiveness Jyrki Katainen said…

    In July 2014, the EC adopted guidelines for the approval of energy and environmental projects benefitting from such instruments, which are considered state aid. Nuclear energy was excluded from the guidelines.

    However, the EFSI will effectively act as a guarantee fund that could be used by developers of major infrastructure projects – theoretically including nuclear power stations – as a way of guaranteeing their investment…

    In October 2014, the EC opened the way for state aid in nuclear energy by approving state aid measures for the construction of a new nuclear power station at Hinkley Point in the UK. The measures included an investment contract in the form of a “contract for difference” (CfD), also known as a “strike price”, and a guarantee from the UK Treasury.

    Westinghouse Electric Company said the Hinkley Point case was a model for all other EU nuclear projects which require state aid. The company said the model would allow nuclear energy to compete “on a level playing field” with other low-carbon energy technologies with…

  • rogerthat

    Media ignores Fukushima as probable cause of declining West Coast marine populations

    Robert McFadden
    November 28, 2014

  • rogerthat

    Local Historian and former White Center Blog Writer (now Author) Sarah Fox is asking for the public’s help for her recently ­published book “Downwind: A People’s History of the Nuclear West.”

    This book is the culmination of a 10-year research project, yet some of the most important work­ spreading the word about the book­ still remains.

    As a first­time Author published through a university press, she received no advance and no institutional support for a book tour.

    Royalties are 1% (15% for ebooks), paid out once a year. All book events and travel expenses come out of Sarah’s personal funds, and she must often take time off work to commit to these events.

    Downwind explores the human and environmental cost of nuclear testing and uranium extraction in the American West through the stories of “downwinders,” the residents of the Great Basin region affected by radiological pollution.

    These citizens tell of insidious food and water contamination, communities ravaged by cancer epidemics, farmers and ranchers economically ruined by crop failures and massive livestock die­offs, and miners working in dangerous conditions without proper safety equipment while the government surreptitiously studied the effects of radiation on humans.

    In chilling detail Downwind brings to light the experiences and concerns of groups whose voices have been silenced and…

    • rogerthat

      marginalized for decades in the name of patriotism and national security, tracing the evolution of a citizen activist movement that eventually challenged the federal government and powerful military and energy industries.

      With the renewed boom in mining in the American West, Fox’s look at this hidden history, unearthed from years of field interviews, archival research, and epidemiological studies, is a must­read for every American concerned about the fate of our western lands and communities.

      Fox is inviting all to join her on Monday, Dec. 15 at 7 p.m. at the Skylark in West Seattle for a reading and Q&A with her, appetizers, and a silent auction and dessert grab featuring special flavors by Full Tilt Ice Cream. Tickets are $20 each and are available through Eventbrite. Signed copies of the book are available for an additional cost. The Skylark is located at 3803 Delridge Way SW.

      For the most part, downwinder stories have been ignored and left out of our collective history. Sarah’s book tour will focus on bringing the voices of downwinders to the fore.

      With your help, we can raise enough funds at this event to send Sarah into areas heavily impacted by nuclear activities and continue to create awareness for these issues which range from policy to public health and the environment.

      Your support is irreplaceable, and appreciated beyond measure, not only by Sarah, but by affected communities. We hope you can show your support by …

  • raddog

    Another great example of ENEnews making up headlines by misquoting a story.

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