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LA Times: “Plutonium having melted and dropping somewhere” is suspected to be causing contamination of underground water at Fukushima -Japan nuclear professor

Published: October 21st, 2013 at 11:31 am ET
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Los Angeles Times, October 20, 2013: [...] 300 tons of radioactive wastewater was pouring into the ocean each day from the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant [Tepco now says 400 tons of radioactive groundwater is flowing into the Pacific every day -Japan Times]. It’s unclear how long the massive volume has been leaking from underneath the damaged reactors [...] “It is unclear how the underground water is being contaminated,” [Kenji Araki, a nuclear engineering guest professor at the Fukushima National College of Technology] said, speculating that it’s the result of plutonium near the reactor core having melted and dropping somewhere inside the reactor. Pinpointing leaks is very difficult, Araki said. [...]

Arab News, Oct. 16, 2013: Nadeem Qureshi, M.I.T.-trained engineer: “Three hundred tons [400 tons, see above] of toxic highly radioactive water from the site continues to leak into the Pacific Ocean every day. The plant operator — Tokyo Electric Power Company — admitted recently that it has “lost control of Fukushima”. [...] The Fukushima incident is emblematic of the problem with nuclear power. A serious accident results in the release of radiation into the environment. And this is the good news. The real problem is that nuclear fuel and waste products generated in nuclear reactors remain radioactive from 10,000 to tens of millions of years. For example the half life — a measure of the rate of natural decay of radioactive materials — of the waste product Plutonium 239 is 24,000 years, and that of Neptunium 237 is two million years. When these waste products are released into the environment in an accident they are there to stay.”

See also: Nuclear Expert: Plutonium from Fukushima in Pacific fish presents health risk -- Study: "Long-distance transport" of Fukushima-sourced plutonium should be addressed

Published: October 21st, 2013 at 11:31 am ET
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26 comments

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