Japan Times: “Plague of radioactive water” from Fukushima; Will need monitoring for next 100 years, maybe even longer — WSJ: Alarm over recent Tepco alert, could be quite bad; Yttrium at 200,000 Bq/liter in groundwater

Published: October 21st, 2013 at 10:43 am ET


WSJ, Oct. 21, 2013: In an alarming Friday-morning alert, the operator of the stricken Fukushima Daiichi nuclear-power plant said that radiation levels on Oct. 17 had spiked some 6,500 times higher overnight, at a well […] It’s a lot harder to figure out just how bad that creeping contamination is, however. JRT’s preliminary answer: It could be quite bad […] Tepco tests water […] using a quick method that measures something it calls “zen-beta’’ in Japanese – or “all-beta’’ in English. […] Friday’s alert said that the zen-beta in the contaminated well was 400,000 Bq per liter – a record-high measurement. […] it turns out that none of it is tritium, since the type of quick measurement used for the beta-radiation check isn’t sensitive enough to pick up tritium, says a Tepco spokesman. What’s more, Tepco has found that the zen-beta from the kind of water that was stored in the leaky tank is generally half from strontium-90 and half from a radioactive form of an element called yttrium, which is formed from strontium-90 in the process of nuclear decay. That would suggest there could be 200,000 Bq per liter of strontium-90 in the well – more than 6,600 times the allowed emission limit.

The Japan Times, Oct. 20, 2013: The plague of radioactive water at the wrecked Fukushima No. 1 power plant has renewed fears both in Japan and abroad over the contamination of seafood and the habitat it comes from. The government is trying to reassure consumers that all fish that find their way to market are safe […] [Hideo Yamazaki of Kinki University] warned that Japan will need to keep monitoring various radioactive materials from Fukushima No. 1 for 100 years — and possibly even longer — as work to scrap the four damaged reactors stretches on for decades.

See also: [intlink id=”japan-professor-1000-years-from-now-contaminated-water-from-fukushima-may-still-be-entering-pacific-its-necessary-to-keep-monitoring-for-that-time” type=”post”]{{empty}}[/intlink]

Published: October 21st, 2013 at 10:43 am ET


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  3. Asahi: Radioactive contamination ‘soaring’ in Fukushima groundwater — Strontium and other beta emitters up 4,500% in recent days; Cesium rises nearly 1,500% — Tepco says it doesn’t know why levels spiked (VIDEO) August 6, 2013
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46 comments to Japan Times: “Plague of radioactive water” from Fukushima; Will need monitoring for next 100 years, maybe even longer — WSJ: Alarm over recent Tepco alert, could be quite bad; Yttrium at 200,000 Bq/liter in groundwater

  • domjox domjox

    Monitoring? Stopping the flow might be more productive..

  • Just curious, with all of this 'soaring' radiation levels, how come the workers are not turning into birds yet?

    At what point is it too dangerous to work there?

    You can be around BILLIONS of bq/l radiation sources for long and live to tell about it.

    Maybe this is why they are ignoring the water in the ditches leading to the ocean; too dangerous to work on them?

  • This stuff is just mind boggling, going from bad to worse, and then worse all over again, with no end…

    But in the last couple of months, no more news on radiation levels in monitoring wells… what is the radiation level doing now?

    What is coming out now seems to be a rehash of several months ago…

  • Anthony Anthony

    Two of my animals seemed really off yesterday. My spazzy terrier profoundly so. They seemed exhausted and kinda depressed and distracted. I kept wondering all day if they were sick somehow or upset about something. I checked them over and they did have periods of being normal through the day but it was because I caught myself having the same concern looking at them last night as in the am when we got up. I really think fog is the ideal radioactive delivery system in terms of internal ingestion.

    We have had way heavier than normal all day and night fog like I never remember seeing here in my life. For now the third day. If my theory on the delivery of poisons is right then a dog with all their sniffing might just show the effects of it quicker and more severe… like my terrier.

    • markww markww

      Anthony what Part of the World / Country or State are you in so know where this is happening

      Thanks Mark

      • Anthony Anthony

        Hey markww I am on Vancouver Island Can. Course the fog is SUPER HEAVY today as if to emphasize my thoughts! Its like its San Francisco here in the old days when they used to get fogged in all the time. I think that has decreased over time there compared say to the 80's and 90's. Ongoing all day and night fog here is for me the first time here now. They closed our airport here for 24 hours (I think) the other day across the whole island I heard. Some poor guy flew from Calgary to here (and back!) twice in one day trying to land!

    • saltyfishlvr

      The fog is not safe. I usually get an average 21-25cpm at the Sandy River Delta on the Columbia River, and the fog last week was 141cpm. Later in the afternoon, when the fog burned off, rads were running 38-45cpm. We don't stay long when rads run in the 40's, it's an off leash park, too much heavy breathing from running and too many smells keeping his nose to the ground, for it to be safe for my pal.

      • Anthony Anthony

        It makes me feel better reading this. I know my dogs pretty well and especially the one is still off kilter for her. I usually don't give fog much attention however I cant understand how it hasn't burned off through the full day and only increases overnight. Maybe its nothing but my spider-sense is ringing. Thanks for your post, it helps.

        • irhologram

          Anthony, maybe you're not thinking in the right direction. This is the short list. There are dozens more events RE: Vancouver Island. You should get your animals up off ground level, if possible.
          Vancouver Island
          2013-09-25 – Car bursts into flame while parked on street in Sooke (Canada), on Vancouver Island: The car wasn’t running at the time, leading police to believe the fire could have been deliberately set, Rowatt said.

          Sep 01, 2013
          The 272-foot vessel, Falkor, carries an unmanned submarine that will travel deep into the ocean off Vancouver Island to study an area where sea life dies each year from a periodic lack of oxygen, called hypoxia.
          2013-08-14 – Fish reported dying off Vancouver Island (Canada): http://vancouver.24hrs.ca/2013/08/11/bleeding-herring-discovery-alarms-bc-marine-biologist

          2013-07-31 – Six businesses destroyed by fire at 5:30 AM at mall in Sooke (Canada), on Vancouver Island

          2013-06-18 – Vacant home burns at 2:30 AM in Langford (Canada), on Vancouver Island: http://www.vicnews.com/news/212016021.html
          Police say there was no one in the residence at the time of the fire as the residence has been vacant for more than two years.
          “Investigators are hoping to hear from anyone with information on how this fire may have started,” said media spokesperson Cp. Kathy Rochlitz.

          • irhologram

            Short list cont.
            2013-06-08 – Boat bursts into flame in the Strait of Georgia near Vancouver Island (Canada)

            http://www.vancouversun.com/Vancouver+Island+shipping+container+explosion+injures+damages+nearby+building/8301311/story.html · http://www.timescolonist.com/business/man-near-blast-escapes-with-minor-injuries-
            Two large shipping containers were destroyed in the explosion, said the Saanich Fire Department.
            Debris was blown throughout the site and block, windows of nearby buildings exploded and one witness reported seeing the front window of a truck driving by completely smashed in the blast.
            Saanich Fire said the cause of the explosion appeared to be a leaking 20-lb propane bottle, stored in one of the shipping containers. (Humm. ONE 20 lb. propane canister destroyed TWO large shipping containers and sent debris a block away. Wow.)

            2013-02-16 – Deadly fire engulfs house in coastal Victoria, British Columbia (Canada), on Vancouver Island, 3 killed
            The three victims, two females and one male, were in their early 20s. The male victim was found on the porch outside while the two females were found upstairs on the third floor.
            Victoria Fire Chief Paul Kowalyk told Global BC it appears the fire started on a couch outside on the porch and spread up the siding of the house.

            • irhologram

              Short list cont.
              2012-12-19 – Van bursts into flame at gas station in coastal Nainamo (Canada), on Vancouver Island


              2012-06-15 – Huge Red Tide problem hits east coast of Vancouver Island in Canada: http://hisz.rsoe.hu/alertmap/site/?pageid=event_desc&edis_id=BH-20120615-35451-CAN 2012-06-15 – Crewman has chest pains, …

              Anthony, I would seriously consider moving.

              • Anthony Anthony

                OH Dammit I see your point totally! I live near a military area and last two weeks I did hear two loud booms from their direction. You know, like explosion booms. But no sirens or anything afterwards. To be honest I think its too late for me to start scrambling myself to safety and to be honest, where would one point to? My mortal fear remains a tie between death by tsunami OR shark attack. It just makes me wonder if related to that massive China smog problem posted publicly online. It looks really really really bad for them this and closed down an area or something major like that. Maybe this *fog* of mine is only partially fog but actually a smog from overseas? Van Island is first stop after all from Asia. Same for rad droppage.

                • irhologram

                  MIRROR, Alta. – Fear grips an Alberta village where the likely poisoning deaths of at least nine dogs is being called a massacre by one heartbroken owner.

                  Roel Vandenberg let Rocco out Saturday in his fenced yard, and a short time later, his girlfriend found the young shepherd/collie dead on the ground.

                  RCMP said Vandenberg was not alone. On Saturday, authorities were investigating the suspicious deaths of nine dogs in the village of Mirror, about 70 kilometres east of Red Deer.

                  Residents claim as many as 14 have died, all within a 24-hour period.

                  "It is a total, brutal massacre," Vandenberg said. "It's a nightmare."

                  The body count rose throughout the day as people found dogs dead or dying in their yards.

                  Hours after Rocco died, Vandenberg went to warn a neighbour only to find a dog dead in the yard before learning the woman next door lost dogs, too.

                  RCMP Sgt. Geoff Buxcey said the cause of deaths are unknown, but they urged residents to protect pets and report suspicious activity while they try to find the culprit.

                  It's not the first time there has been a rash of suspected dog poisonings in Mirror. Last year, several domestic dogs and a skunk died of suspected strychnine poisoning.

                  "This time it seems to be the same thing," Buxcey said. "Our officers are working very hard at finding a suspect. This is horrible and certainly cowardly. These animals are innocent."

                • irhologram

                  Anthony! The research ship into ocean release of toxic GAS is off YOUR shore, not China. See above link.

                • irhologram

                  And because there were sirens, you assumed these loud booms were military munitions…but what if they were exploding gas plumes, as I believe they may have been? Mehtane/H2S/et al are cumulative, explosive, and cause "popping" sounds when in small quantities and atmospheric and underground explosions when large volumes of gas ignite

                • irhologram

                  Almost anywhere is safer, Anthony, than where you now are…except for England. They're getting hammered. But that's also an island. Or Thailand…where people are dropping like the dogs in Alberta, and they've named the new peril "sudden Death Syndrome (cause unknown). If i were projecting safe places, I would not live on an island. I would not live in a fracking state…or near the ocean, a lake, river, stream, or canal. I would not live in a volcanic area, extinct or otherwise, but I wouldn't live in a low living valley, either.. I would not live next to a forest, which will likely burn. I would not live underground where gas will seep. I think those in DUMBs may well be surprised. I would not live in a city, where others would steal my food if I didnt shoot them. Ideally? Maybe the desert in a biosphere bubble? But do-ably? I'd probably choose inland Uraguay or Paraguay because that's where TPTB chose. It would probably be a home dug in the mid slope on the generally downwind side of a far inland hill. Fireproof and less exposed to pluming. Without electricity, using waterless, dry-toilet, composting sanitation.

    • Dr. Anne Lee Tomlinson Maziar anne

      One of my dogs was the same way. I thought she dying. She is a bit better today.

    • Pacific Ocean Catastrophe Confirmed, Fukushima Mega Nuclear Disaster Causing Massive Die Offs

  • Just remember they have money for the Olympics but no money to divert the groundwater above the melted ruined reactors. And they are working on Tepco turning a profit in fiscal fourteen. And most people have no clue whatsoever. A boycott the 2020 Irradiated Olympics campaign would be a good publicity stunt. The Japanese people need to know they are acting like complete assholes.

    • nedlifromvermont

      Remember Mark, it is not the "Japanese people" who are acting thusly … it is a small, overly powerful, nuclear-business-money-infused elite who are directing the traffic and the cover up … and these particular Japanes marionettes are acting on direction from Big Daddy Nuclear Progenitor GE, and their lawyers … to stop the monitoring and the news flow, with Obamalama's blessing, … but the Truth Will Out like some radioactive noble gas which cannot be contained … and the "people" everywhere will soon realize they've been had and played for fools …

      … for nuclear power was never necessary …

      … for nuclear power was never safe …

      … for nuclear power was never a good bargain, and had to be granted total and totalitarian liability waivers to even switch on their first "commercial" reactor, in the U.S., at Shippingport, PA …

      … so they die are cast, and the uranium business was forced through by wicked, greedy capitalists who worked for places like J. P. Morgan Bank (always the largest shareholder in GE since company inception, in 1890) …

      Get this straight. The "people" have been had, and enough is enough. The planned-for, to-be-built-and-financed-by-the-Chinese, British reactors at Hinckley Point, should be enjoined, picketed, protested and legally sabotaged by the English "people" , if there are any "un-knackered" Limeys left on that sorry island!

      Peace! …

    • Anthony Anthony

      I try to restrain quoting the bible to make points but it took me aback yesterday reading an article which did correlate the passage stating how what is right is wrong, up is down, everything seems backwards (sic) etc…. and for me,the entire Fuku story-line really fits the bill. It is completely absurd on many levels and baffles the mind trying to decipher or make rational sense of the sequence of events.

      Who knew life would become as this?
      The main thing missing is someone apologizing for killing us slowly with this disaster.

      Pin drop.

      • Sol Man

        It hasn't taken that long at all, really. It was on Dec. 2, 1942 that the nuclear reaction at Chicago Pile-1 was achieved.

        • Anthony Anthony

          Indeed. But I loved being young in the 70`s through say 90`s. It was a great time to just take in the world. Hard to believe such a memory is not attainable today. Kids today have a different life ahead and the negative aspect is none of us truly can comfortably say things are going to be okay for them compared to our own upbringings. Thats just stupid and totally unnecessary. You are right, I see what you are saying and agree.

  • Ron

    I don't know if anything like his has been thought of, but I'm wondering about – what if the Japanese and other nations begin to dump load after load of something (dirt, concrete etc) offshore Fuku until they have built up a significant new piece of land. Just keep dumping and dumping until fuku is nowhere near the ocean. Make it as wide and dense as possible. Then start piling on top of the plant itself until they have a mountain where the reactors used to be. A man-made Yucca Mountain. Seems to be the only way to contain this stuff is t o bury it.

  • Wreedles Wreedles

    For those interested in the significance of the Yttrium findings. The last sentence is especially important…

    "The most important use of yttrium is in making phosphors, such as the red ones used in television set cathode ray tube (CRT) displays and in LEDs. It is also used in the production of electrodes, electrolytes, electronic filters, lasers and superconductors; various medical applications; and the tracing of various materials to enhance their properties. Yttrium has no known biological role, and exposure to yttrium compounds can cause lung disease in humans.

    Yttrium isotopes are among the most common products of the nuclear fission of uranium occurring in nuclear explosions and nuclear reactors. In terms of nuclear waste management, the most important isotopes of yttrium are 91Y and 90Y, with half-lives of 58.51 days and 64 hours, respectively.[25] Though 90Y has the short half-life, it exists in secular equilibrium with its long-lived parent isotope, strontium-90 (90Sr) with a half-life of 29 years."

  • Wyakin Wyakin

    Mark-yes stopping the flow is a priority, if it can actually be done.

    Remember that it is not the “Japanese people” but corporate and government interests from the day Atoms for Peace became a program that set up the conditions ripe for this type of disaster to occur literally everywhere in the world there is a NPP. These same interests are in control of the current response or lack thereof, while we have seen hundreds of thousands in Tokyo protest the restart of NPPs in Japan.

    I’m sure I’m not the only one to notice that everything reported by Tepco is an apparent “overnight development.”

    Typical understatements on quantities and contamination duration, with references to “leaking” and “creeping” contamination.

    “This is not something that has a big impact on fish in the sea.” The IAEA and ICRP standards referenced should instill confidence in every consumer that fish is safe.

    “So you’d have to be a lot closer to a source of beta radiation to get a harmful dose than you would with gamma radiation.”

    Really, how close is in you?

  • TheBigPicture TheBigPicture

    R A D I A T I O N

    Ocean surrounds Japan, Daiichi is leaking like a sieve.

  • Daisy207

    Yttrium ???? What is this? Yttrium 90 – has a half life of about three days. Are they saying this is a fresh fission product? If so how about letting us know what is going on with Iodine and all its various isomers. All these reports about increases in radiation just don't make sense. How about a map of the Fukushima site, with locations of sampling points, monitoring wells, depth of construction, depth to water measurements and a list of compounds (components) analyzed, dates sampled with summaries of analyses going back a couple of years – provide a table showing sampling dates and all test results – preferably in Excel format so we can all download it and do our own graphing of trends. I have done numerous hydrogeologic studies in my life – that's my profession – and I would never report such chaotic data – with no reference points, maps or charts to explain the results. Furthermore, with the limited data that I have found – the water table under Fukushima cannot be more than 5 feet below grade if that – and it must be tidal – flowing out to sea half of the day – letting ground water remain in contact with source material for longer periods of time before discharging. They cannot stop discharges via the water table to the sea – and the upgradient geology is steep enough to provide a continuous feed of water through the system. There is just too much water to deal with and the source of contamination cannot be remediated with technology that exists today.

  • Sol Man

    They work and play and mess things up beyond all nightmares.
    The invisible people work, play, and pay, pay, pay;
    then get sick and die.

  • Wyakin Wyakin

    Mark-agreed with your economic and political summary.

    As far as "stopping the flow" I was agreeing with your prior assessment:

    "Just remember they have money for the Olympics but no money to divert the groundwater above the melted ruined reactors."

    Everything you are saying reaffirms that the ongoing and historical promotion of NP has at is origins international and local economic and government interests.

    This is in contrast to the Japanese people acting like the explicative you used above. Please exercise your choice of words more wisely so as not to be offensive and detract from the other insightful thoughts you have to offer.


  • Bah. No-one would believe me, so it's on my little bloglet, take it or leave it (click on nick).
    USA should have had dozens of mega quakes since Tohuku…the fact they haven't is where the fog is coming from – geothermal steam as they vibrate the plates safe with their con-trail magnified ionospheric heater beams.

  • Jebus Jebus

    Fukushima is here. It's our disaster now too…

    Radioactive Fukushima water hits California, greeted by protesters

    Radioactive ocean water from the 2011 Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant disaster was first detected along the coastline of California in March of 2012. Researchers already know that radioactive iodine from Fukushima has arrived in California, and expect peak levels af radiation to hit California in 2016. The problem appears to be worsening as typhoons have caused overflows of radioactive water into the Pacific Ocean.


  • Wyakin Wyakin


    thank you for sharing this greeting.

    I have't heard much from state or regional government officials from any North American governments raising awareness or alarms over this disaster.

    These governments have the ability to pressure central government authorities to meaningfully engage and apply diplomatic pressure on Japan in site remediation strategies.

    Since California is exempt from EPA regulations, I'm also a little surprised they have not taken more of a leadership role based on their environmental regulation authority independent from the EPA.

    It would be great if such an event could be launched on the same day in all the Pacific Rim countries. That would really raise some awareness and possibly create mitigation synergy public pressure.

    I hope people in these geographic areas take this to heart and do their part to raise awareness.


  • Wyakin Wyakin

    I misspoke. California can set its own auto emission standards but is not exempt form other EPA standards. I would still expect some leadership from this influential state…