NYTimes: Bags of radioactive waste sitting along Fukushima coastline — “There isn’t going to be another tsunami” says worker

Published: December 9th, 2012 at 6:19 pm ET


Title: Japan Quake in Nuclear Plant Area Stirs Brief Alarm
Source: New York Times
Date: December 7, 2012

It was perhaps the surest sign that Japan remains unnerved by last year’s devastating earthquake and tsunami. After a large quake on Friday hit near the same area stricken last year, broadcasters on the public television network NHK threw aside their usual reserve to repeatedly issue worried warnings about tsunamis, with one host frantically urging people to “flee now to save your life!”

[…] The 7.3-magnitude quake that struck at 5:29 p.m. under the seabed off the northeast shore of Honshu, the country’s largest island, was the largest aftershock since immediately after last year’s quake, according to the National Earthquake Information Center in Colorado.

[…] On Thursday, a radiological cleanup worker helping to remove contaminated soil from Naraha, a town in Fukushima Prefecture that remains partially evacuated because of radiation fears, appeared not to be worried about storing bags of that dirt along the coastline.

The worker, who declined to give his name, brushed off questions over whether those bags might be torn in another tsunami. “There isn’t going to be another tsunami,” he said.

See also: [intlink id=”especially-alarming-giant-quake-of-magnitude-8-or-greater-could-soon-strike-japan-govt-calls-for-continued-vigilance” type=”post”]{{empty}}[/intlink]

Published: December 9th, 2012 at 6:19 pm ET


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41 comments to NYTimes: Bags of radioactive waste sitting along Fukushima coastline — “There isn’t going to be another tsunami” says worker

  • pcjensen

    "isn't going to be anther tsunami"… what do they know & aren't telling us? crystal ball? wink wink

  • eatliesndie eatliesndie

    The worker being questioned has had a partial lobotomy, the same procedure performed on nearly all TEPCO employees and executives.

  • many moons

    Sounds apathetic. He doesn't care if there is another tsunami or where the bags of contaminated soil might end up one day….maybe that's the point you get to when you toil day in day out with material that is probably killing you….nothing really matters…

  • AGreenRoad AGreenRoad

    yea, and radiation is good for you, the more the better.

    Nuclear Accidents, Recycling Nuclear Weapons/Fuel

  • AGreenRoad AGreenRoad

    Just wear a tin foil hat, Tyvek suit and a paper mask while you are pouring the radiation into the ocean, the rivers, the ground, the air and all living creatures on Earth..

    This will protect you…


    Superstition is as superstition does

  • kez

    I doubt that this cleanup worker was actually a Tepco employee.

    He is more likely to be contracted to work by a sub or sub sub contractor.

    Much of the dirtiest work (the "grunt" work) pre 311 and post 311 is done by the lowest tier of the labor force.

    With the lowest compensation, protection, and perhaps job training. I would think this would also include lack of information about safety precautions.

    I think it is also a matter of record that many of these workers (especially early on) were recruited by the Japanese mobsters … "either do this work and die a slow death or don't and we will kill you now."

    And although I am not going to link a bunch of provative references I will speculate that this worker might have been a teenager …

    Or a 65 year old farmer displaced by the disaster trying to hang on.

    And … there wasn't a destructive tsunami this time. He was right.

    JMHO. Here's one link:

    Take care.

  • davidh7426 davidh7426

    "…The worker, who declined to give his name, brushed off questions over whether those bags might be torn in another tsunami. “There isn’t going to be another tsunami,” he said."

    Does anybody have this guys phone number, I'd really like to know next weeks winning lottery numbers!!!

  • Sol Man

    Thinking in the middle of the night about all of the water vapor constantly issuing from the wrecked buildings. There may be a way to capture it with chilled metal baffles and then remove it as ice to another locate for processing. Liquid nitrogen to chill. let the ice build and then water to warm the plates to get the ice to slide off, then, back to the chilling. I am haunted by the sight of the radioactive vapor escaping everywhere. So, I think: can't it be solidified for greater safety? Please excuse my short rant.

    • Shammalammadingdong

      It's best not to think of things like that in the middle of the night.

      TEPCO has no intention of putting any more money into this than they have to. Your idea, even if feasible….will never be considered. It would cost too much.

      Can't see vapor. They'll continue to let it go unnoticed and unreported.

      Cancer? Wow I'm sorry. Wasn't us.

      • Sol Man

        I don't want to think of these things, but the reality of the situation forces otherwise. Had been following the financial debacle since '08, often late night, found enenews. Must have the information, even though my current state does not allow me to change much out there.
        I garden and forage in nature adding to the daily dish.

  • Shammalammadingdong

    1. Invade Japan

    2. Conscript their population.

    3. Form legions of "biological robots" as the Soviets did.

    4. Fix it

    5. Give them their rotting country back, on the condition that no nuclear power is used ever.

    • richard richard

      Ah, someone's thinking straight. +1

    • WindorSolarPlease

      Shammalammadingdong, are those choices?

      I vote to fix it..that would be a miricle though.

      How about..Cover it underneath, top, sides, and vent it with filters.

      Hire robots

      My favorite..End Nuclear Power

    • BreadAndButter BreadAndButter

      Are you from the US?
      grim lol

    • BreadAndButter BreadAndButter

      Just a reminder: it's unfixable, whether you invade their country or not.

      • WindorSolarPlease

        I'm with you BreadAndButter, it's better to help each other, than invade each other.

        • richard richard

          The thing with things like help and peace is they only work when all parties play the game.

          But, for whatever reasons, sometimes, one side won't be cooperative.

          So, that's ok, until your existence is threatened. Which, apparently, is the case. From what is gathered here, we have an ELE going on.

          How long can you wait till desperate action need to be taken?

          And, as b&b and others agree, there is nothing to do, nothing can be fixed? There is no such thing as decontamination in the immediate term. There's not even a plug to stop any leakages.

          I dunno about you, but if that is the case, what's the point of maintaining the status quo? And why not seek to apply justice against those that have been in denial and taken no action.

          If we're all about to die, no matter what – then what's the benefit of expecting 'cooperation' before taking some determined actions?

          • BreadAndButter BreadAndButter

            Hi richard, if we are discussing invading other's countries to respond to an ongoing possible ELE, I'd vote for invading the US to force them to finally sign the Kyoto protocol (and ACT!) and stop pushing the world over the climate change cliff, and then go north and invade Canada who withdrew from the K.P. last year to poison the world with tar sands.

            OK? Fine

            • or-well

              We're already invaded!!! by profit-snatchers,
              media mind-parasites and conspiracy-hatchers,
              Tasmanian spin-flackers and lootbag-catchers,
              protest head-bashers and atom-smashers,
              enviromental debaclers and truth-redacters,
              genome-crackers and elected slackers,
              what we need's a persuasion invasion
              that reveals false economic equations
              and criminalises factual evasions
              and all of Nuclear's Life degradations.

              Just don't expect full co-operation
              from those running the operation.

              • aigeezer aigeezer

                Exactly, or-well. People keep using the fallacy of equating a country's government with its citizenry. The same trap is present in thinking of a government as a monolith. Within any government body, there are probably voices for and against positions on any particular issue.

                I live in Canada and I am appalled at the actions of "my" government over the last few years, including its position on Kyoto. Some one or some few within the government are making those decisions though, and the entire country is hostage to them. Same for any nation-state.

                Notice how (in this post at least) I've come around to your way of thinking – to caricature it "a few bad guys are to blame". Tomorrow I'll change my mind and decide again that we are all culpable – it's hard-wired human nature. 😉

                Anyway, I'm always convinced that blaming "nation-state-name" for anything is futile, and invading "nation-state-name" for any reason is a game that serves somebody's ends but never mine.

                • or-well

                  Hi aigeezer, I think we agree on more than either of us probably realise, due to the constraints of this format and how I present here. Disagreement stimulates thinking, if one is open to that.
                  (You may have noticed my rhymes present the occassional deviation from a consistent viewpoint. I blame or-well.)
                  I agree that Gov't is but individuals. To forget that and identify with mythological notions and emotive constructs of "The State" is problematic.
                  However, we can't discount the hold those notions may have on "a people", nor "cultural reactions" such notions and constructs prompt in times of crisis, be that genuine crisis or contrived.
                  You see, in a way, I am saying what you have said before, that it is all of us.
                  Having said that, it does seem folks in Japan-and elsewhere – are facing a construct, in the shape of the Nuke power industry/nuke village/nuclear squid that, for the most part, operates with a rather monolithic face, a consistency of word and deed. The individuals within that arena choose to enter it, and retain free will and choice, and make decisions. To what extent are those choices and decisions informed by full realisation of all pertinent factuality?
                  How much of what they say/do is simply the momentum of their life path and what they have or have not been exposed to, or chosen to access from among those choices?
                  IOW, how many are the blind trying to lead the blind, and how many are conniving?
                  Looks like I'm out of space.

                  • aigeezer aigeezer

                    Thoughtful post, or-well. I love free-will vs. determinism discussions, but the ones I've been in always seem to end in a draw.

                    As a little thought experiment, I've tried various substitutions for X in a phrase like "the nuke power mess is all X's fault".

                    For example, and borrowing some commonly cited names here: Bush, Cheney, Obama, Hillary, GE, Einstein, Japan, TEPCO, "the greedy", humanity, Truman, shareholders, America, the NWO, the military, the Mossad, politicians, Zionists, HAARP, aliens… you get the idea….

                    Anyway, try as I might, using any of those candidates as "the answer" seems a bit foolish, and many seem to be neither right nor wrong. Since the answer is almost certainly some combinatorial variation of those kinds of entities, it is all the more tantalizing that the answer is never at all clear (to me).

                    A friend used to do research in how people perceived counterfactuals, as in "if only I hadn't left the house five minutes late, I wouldn't have been involved in that fatal car crash" vs. "if only I had never been born etc."

                    Fascinating counterfactual: "If only blah blah, then we wouldn't have the nuke mess we face today."

                    … and of course the much better question: "Given the nuke mess we face today, how (exactly) will we get out of it?"

                    Mu. 😉

                    • or-well

                      aigeezer, right, where to now, which is why I didn't bother continuing my thought train, as it led there.
                      I suggest we lack adequate mechanisms for restraining pro-nuclearists and pro-nuclearism.
                      How to globally leash the beast, if not put it down, keep it down AND deal with its' mess?
                      Globally, because, as we've seen, one disaster anywhere has far-reaching consequences in space and time.
                      I think it will take much more than is presently happening, more than economics, more than renewable development.
                      I suspect it will take a kind of societal change that I just don't see happening on a large enough scale.
                      I'm not at all sure we'll have time to find all the answers, before some exogenous shock(s) makes it all more difficult.

                      BTW, I accept your caricaturisation of my position because it's that – a caricature. I hope you suspect my position is a little more comprehensive and nuanced than my fictional creations of or-well, Fingers and others represent, but if not, that's OK. I'm just pixels.

                    • aigeezer aigeezer

                      Terminally-indented pixels for us both now. Yours have nuance written all over them. I know you know I know that. 😉

                      Anyway, I see no particular progress on the "what to do" issue at any group level, so I make my own plans and live my own life factoring in nuke-world as best I can. Maybe once large numbers of people do something similar (i.e. notice the phenomenon and make some adjustment or other to lifestyle), then – maybe – that becomes group action, even if the "group" members are not really aware of each others' existence.

                      I'm thinking of something like the sometimes-alleged increasing emigration from Japan. It just happens, as though organically, without leaders, organizations, budgets, propaganda, and so forth.

                      Of course, the next exogenous shock could happen at any moment. Gulp.

    • kez

      Invade and conscript?? Really.

      But allow only a few countries the privilege of being in the Nuke Know Power Club?

      That's what got us here. The country with the biggest guns wins.

      And you sound racist.

      • kez

        Mankind … the big whiney egotistical needy brats that we are … does not know how to exist without war …

        But if we have to fight …

        And we do … because we do … we have not actually learned much in our short time here …

        Let us at least fight with sticks …

        And leave something to generations to come.

        This is the sentiment lost to my generation … most of you here are my generation …

        It wasn't that way with my parents or my grandparents.

        WE perpetuate the endless stall to damnation. Do nothing … never yeild … line in the sand … never ever ever ever ever ever …


        OK … serious rant mood …

        Gotta get off here … deep breathe.

        Take care.

        • aigeezer aigeezer

          Nice rant, kez. We will be fighting with sticks soon enough, if Einstein was right:


          Re fighting with sticks… good idea, but I'd suggest an extension – take a lesson from the "lower" animals. In the animal kingdom, among species that have evolved strong attack mechanisms, combat has often evolved into some form of ritual so the animals don't actually need to kill each other to prove a point.

          Preening displays might replace pecking out an opponent's eyes, for example.

          Nixon (of all people) allowed a ritual combat display in which China trounced the American table tennis team. He got what he wanted and the Chinese got what they wanted. Nobody died.

          So, with that model in mind, wouldn't it be great to see heads of state engage in things like arm-wrestling, or spelling bees, or projectile vomiting contests instead of routinely sending their youth to fight and kill and maim and bleed and die?…

          We sort of had this figured out in the middle ages, with ritual jousting tournaments to settle disputes. Now we have the nukes, leaving most ritual combat to the "lesser" creatures that will replace us:


          • kez

            @ Aigeezer,

            Hi and thanks for those most excellent thoughts.

            I learned, I felt and I welcomed your input. I will remember those things.


  • TheBigPicture TheBigPicture

    Not really important what the man said about a tsunami. Radiation is on the soil, crops, and in our lungs, from several meltdowns: U.S, Russia, Japan, etc.

  • yogda yogda

    “There isn’t going to be another tsunami”

    You need punched in the stomach? Say again?

    • WindorSolarPlease

      yogda, remind me never to get you mad, I would not like a punch.

      How can he say, "There isn't going to be another tsunami?"

      Does he know something we don't?

      Someone should check his water bottle.

      Does radiation hurt the brain cells?

  • or-well

    The reporter should have looked into who made the decision to store dirt on the coastline.
    Tepco? A J-Gov Ministry?
    A Town official? Prefectural official?

    But Mr. "No tsunami" becomes the touchpoint for the mention
    "Elsewhere, there were signs that complacency might be creeping back."

    The guy might just have meant "Get out of my face" with his brushoff, perhaps fearing for his job, for reasons suggested above.

  • Oh, I think there will more tsunamis… we just won't be around to see them.

  • or-well

    This article skirts the whole nuclear issue quite well.
    From the headline "…BRIEF Alarm" (empahsis mine)to the third-hand UN says Japan says Nuke plants OK to this –
    "…Naraha, a town in Fukushima prefecture that remains partially evacuated because of radiation FEARS…" (emphasis mine)

  • m a x l i

    Storing the radioactive waste in bags along the shoreline is the ideal solution from the standpoint of the Nuclear Village. Off course, they could put everything in a ship and directly dump it into the ocean. But this would make a bad press, if anyone finds out. But there is a clever trick, to let nature do the dirty deed and achieve the same result. They fill everything in bags and lay them out in neat, orderly rows along the coastline. Sooner or later a tsunami will come and wash everything away. The nuclear misfits will, off course, make a very innocent and surprised face and say: "Who could have known, there would be a tsunami coming?"

    One more "advantage" is that more radioactivity will be dispersed around the world. This way, in years to come, when health data in Japan are shifting, the difference between the japanese population and any control group will be watered down, literally. Waste gone. Liability gone. "Nobody died from Fukushima." A win-win-win situation for the nuclear mafia. A loose-loose-loose situation for everyone else.
    “There isn’t going to be another tsunami.” I imagine, that worker was told this by his supervisor, which again was told by his boss… When authority tells you something, it must be true.

  • Sickputer

    I am surprised they don't pile the bags up as a temporary levee at Daiichi. How's that temporary levee coming anyway? Typical Tepco lies… Nothing has improved in theb10 months since this article below would venture:

    "Operators of nuclear power plants across Japan are dawdling in efforts to make their facilities safer, despite government calls nearly a year ago to immediately start work on emergency protective measures.

    Most plant operators are nowhere near close to installing coastal levees to protect their nuclear facilities from massive tsunami, nor do they have strategies in place to prevent hydrogen explosions at the plants, an Asahi Shimbun survey shows.

    In the aftermath of reactor meltdowns at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant last March, the government called on all plant operators to swiftly take safety measures against earthquakes and tsunami.

    Nearly 12 months on, it is envisaged that only three nuclear facilities will have coastal levees completed by the end of the year.

    Not one operator has managed to put measures in place to prevent hydrogen explosions. In fact, many have not even started the work to implement the measures."


    • m a x l i

      Why are they not working on improved safety measures? Well, a simple calculation tells them, it would be money thrown away, an investment without return. It would not increase their profits.

      Maybe they even know, they will never switch on the idle reactors, but cannot admit this yet, due to pressure from the global nuclear village?