TV: Emergency survey underway along West Coast, marine life being affected “in ways never seen before” — CBS: “Unusual increase in dolphin, sea lion, and seabird deaths” — Thought to be largest toxic bloom “anywhere, ever” — Worry that impacts on fish to last several years (VIDEO)

Published: June 22nd, 2015 at 3:51 pm ET


CBS, Jun 17, 2015 (emphasis added): A toxic algae bloom spreading off the Pacific coast could be the largest one scientists have ever seen. “It’s definitely the largest bloom of this particular algae seen on the West Coast, possibly anywhere, ever” Raphael Kudela, a professor of ocean sciences at the University of California Santa Cruz, told CBS News… “Currently what we’re seeing is this large bloom taking place from about Santa Barbara all the way up to Alaska,” said Kudela… “We’ve been keeping track since the beginning of May.”… But the size of this bloom surprised even him. “It’s over such a large area. You typically don’t see these blooms up in Alaska. They’re having to deal with something they’re not used to dealing with.”… Already, animal rescue centers along the coast are seeing an unusual increase in sea lion, dolphin and pelican deaths

Vancouver Sun, Jun 22, 2015: Toxic algae bloom west of Vancouver Island threatens salmon… The bloom stretches along the Pacific coast from California to B.C… the cause is unknown… An additional concern relates to salmon stock. The bloom has almost no crustaceanswhich is worrisome, [Ian Perry, a research scientist with Fisheries and Oceans Canada] said… “with the lack of crill [sic] and other crustaceans, there is a concern they won’t find as much food”… consequences could be seen in lower salmon stocks returning to rivers in two to four years, he said.

L.A. Times, Jun 19, 2015: Toxic algae bloom shuts down West Coast fisheries…  A recent, huge bloom of algae off the West Coast has killed sea birds and sickened marine mammals from Central to Northern California, experts found…

Daily Breeze, Jun 20, 2015: The West Coast is in the midst of the most prolific toxic algal outbreak ever recorded, said Vera Trainer, manager of the Marine Biotoxin Program at NOAA… What makes it even more unusual is that other debilitating toxins have been found alongside it — in some cases infecting the same animals…

Spokesman Review, Jun 17, 2015: A toxic algae bloom that’s unprecedented is range is affecting marine life from Central California toward Alaska… Now, its effects are spreading to mammals. In recent video… a sea lion is shown having seizures. NOAA researchers say they have never seen this before on… Washington’s coast.

KING 5 Seattle transcript, June 17, 2015: Washington scientists are conducting an emergency survey of an unprecedented toxic algae bloom in the Pacific, the bloom is so big it extends from Southern California to Alaska… It’s affecting marine life in ways never seen before(Dr. Vera Trainer, manager of NOAA’s Marine Biotoxin Program): “A sea lion with his head arched back and bobbing, he’s basically having seizures… We’re seeing effects on the marine ecosystem that we haven’t seen before.”… Now it’s effects are spreading to mammals. (Trainer): “I think it’s scary, when we start seeing marine mammals suffering from these toxins, they’re not that far in the food chain from us.”…  It’s the first recorded in Washington to react like this. And researchers know it won’t the last. (Trainer): “This is just one animal that was found on the beach. You wonder what other animals that are not on the beaches — what’s happening to them?”

Dr. Vera Trainer, NOAA: “All the signs are pointing to this being a really unusual event that is very widespread… It really seems like this algal bloom is lurking offshore, not getting dissipated by storms and weather… So it looks like it will stay like this. But it’s still too early to say that it’s linked to warm water… I wouldn’t be surprised if this has influence over our entire coastline, with varying intensity at different parts.”

Watch KING5’s broadcast here

Published: June 22nd, 2015 at 3:51 pm ET


Related Posts

  1. Toxic bloom “basically eating the West Coast alive” — “Unusual deaths up and down the Pacific coast” — “All populations of marine mammals are way down” in areas — Experts: “Largest ever recorded… This is really unprecedented territory… Never seen an event like this” (VIDEO) August 9, 2015
  2. Gov’t: “This is unprecedented in extent and magnitude”… toxic bloom may stretch from Calif. to Alaska — Largest event ever recorded? — Official: “It’s new territory… we’ve never had to close essentially half our coast” — Fish washing up “extremely poisonous” — “Serious concern for coastal communities” June 16, 2015
  3. TV: Scientists warning of mass die-off along California coast — Official: Seafloor littered with dead fish, washing up “as far as I could see” — Toxin has spread all up and down West Coast — Experts: “Very, very unusual… Really extraordinary” (VIDEO) June 2, 2015
  4. Professor: Fukushima material to be washing up for years on West Coast — “The fish are going to have some in them” — “People have the right to know what’s there” — “Probably not” enough to worry about January 15, 2014
  5. AP: Unprecedented deaths along U.S. Pacific coast — Scientists: Mass die-offs of mammals, birds, fish… “No one’s sure what happened” — Gov’t wants Unusual Mortality Event declared — Samples “being tested for radionuclides from Fukushima” (PHOTOS & AUDIO) July 28, 2015

264 comments to TV: Emergency survey underway along West Coast, marine life being affected “in ways never seen before” — CBS: “Unusual increase in dolphin, sea lion, and seabird deaths” — Thought to be largest toxic bloom “anywhere, ever” — Worry that impacts on fish to last several years (VIDEO)

  • No sense in freaking out about CME's.. If it is big enough to fry consumer electronics, it will be big enough to bring down the grid.

    Then it is lights out for 400 plus nuke pukes and their spent fuel pools. They will all puke their guts out within a couple of weeks.. No one can survive that.. It will make Fuku look like a breath mint.

    Super Solar Storm To Hit Earth – 'Carrington Effect'; 400 Nuke Plants Will Melt Down/Explode, Lawsuits Needed; via @AGreenRoad

    • Of course, if the CME is just tiny or big enough to fry just one country or region, and hit an area that has no nuclear plants, we may luck out.

      But if we get a planet wide HUGE solar storm that knocks out the grid over the entire globe, there is no sense preparing anything, or bugging out.

      Long term, even those with underground shelters will have no place to go back to.

    • patpatters0n

      You sound like a snake oil Doomsayer straight out of the Bible. I know you have a breadth of knowledge that is probably good at heart, but really your doom and gloom is among that of Alex Jones and Gerald Celente…

      Not sure what you hope to achieve other than getting more clicks to your site?

      • Some folks got children, pat. What to do about that? Troll.

        Get the Rad Word Out Folks!
        Even if you're single and don't give a sh*t.
        Don't swallow the flaming patpat religious bs.
        Do not go quietly into the abyss. ALL CAN DO THIS!!!

        Day 1565 of Fukushima already…

        Fukushima Business Cards 4 U! And everyone else, too!
        (45,015 downloads since last June. patpat me lol)

        Distribute liberally.
        Leave randomly.
        Post to all social media.
        GET THE RAD WORD OUT, PEOPLE! It IS the Pacific Ocean, after all.

        Update from Dana Durford
        Fukushima 10 Dead Fin Whales As Pacific Ocean Die Off Accelerates

        P.S. For those just landing and not in a patpat mood,
        remedies and remediation for you and yours.
        There's jet streams out there ya:

        P.P.S. For those asking how can this be?! See new leading "story"

        Major Newspapers: The big question is, where did Fukushima’s melted fuel go?… Just where is that fuel?… No one even knows where it is — Experts: The world’s never seen anything like this… We have 3 nuclear cores that hit groundwater (VIDEO)

        P.P.P.S Welcome, All!…

      • MelodizeYourLife

        Pat your ruining the Patterson name, dont make us look bad. All it takes is for you to do 5 mins of reading at a time. Dismiss all your emotional bullshit that is stopping you from reading whats in front of your face. Digest some facts, take a nap. When your ready to be an adult and handle adult matters in an adult way, please provide us with anything at all that takes us past trash talking those that more than know whats going on and are making an effort to stop planned destruction. Intellectual Nazis are no longer needed and have been outdated pat, its an inferior way of being when you have limitless options…your life, why be an emotional regurgitation puppet because your fear makes you so?

      • MelodizeYourLife

        Lastly just cause a kid with a patterson name sent those guys an album called On with music about fuki and other hard song, you can take your chindit ass elsewhere. Trolls reveal to actually be worthwhile, this kind of behavior deserves a different association, perhaps, mutated sea bass. Quick being a mutated sea bass, not all of us like extra radiation spice. The taste of metal is not appealing, do you not eat food either?

  • Hey, anyone know a good psychic that can find lost house keys?

  • Do some of you watch Space Weather?

    There is a major solar storm going on now, the sun giveth but the sun can also take away.

    Its kind of important, the sun could wipe out the electric grid and that would have major ramifications.

    Could you even run your well pump so long if the grid was down? Do you even have a well? Solar PV with battery backup is the answer.

    Here are some resources in one place. Easy to find, type Space Weather in my blog search box.

  • Nuetron lives matter

    Circled above are some of the bubbles that formed as neutrons passed through the chamber. By counting the bubbles, it is possible to estimate the total dose of neutron radiation absorbed during the 3 hour flight. The answer is 600 microRads (energy range 200 keV – 15 MeV). Interestingly, this is almost the same dose detected by onboard X-ray and gamma-ray sensors: 620 microRads (energy range 10 keV to 20 MeV). Lesson: if you only count X-rays and gamma-rays, then you are missing at least half of the radiation in the atmosphere. Neutrons matter, too.

    Indeed, neutrons are a very important form of cosmic radiation, providing much of the biologically effective radiation dose at altitudes of interest to aviation and space tourism. Low-energy neutrons also cause single-event upsets in aircraft avionics, especially devices that contain Boron 10. Adding a neutron sensor to the Space Weather Payload allows the students to monitor this type of radiation at altitudes ranging from ground level to 120,000 feet.

  • I found this very interesting. Would love to know what other people think. It would seem from your comments that some people also have the same idea.

  • "Toxic Bloom"
    "Toxic Algae Bloom:"
    "Biggest TOXIC BLOOM ever!"

    Okay. We got it (though we also know the toxic algae has not yet been found, just like the virus(es))..
    Question, then; WHAT started all of this toxic-soup in the Pacific? Or, does, "Science", simply not know?'

    Color me,

  • ftlt

    The biggest limiting factor in the commercial production of algae (the highest know source of oil from plants = up to 30% by volume and the rest is good for feed) is CO2 levels and temperatures.

    It needs high CO2 = BINGO!

    And warm waters = BINGO

    Sorry guys and gals this is all about man-made extracted carbon driven Climate Change.

    FUFU is playing a small or no part at all in this one.

    • CodeShutdown CodeShutdown

      pretty simplistic ftlt. 10,000 hiroshima bombs is going to have something to do with everything…that statement is more certain than your supposition it will have little to no effect. The toxic algae story is complex. Although algae blooms were documented as far back as 731 AD in Japan, something is different beyond just the profusion of algae in general. Less than 20% of red tides have harmful effects.

      In Japan from 1900 to 1950 the number of
      reports on red tides was about 10-25 per decade,
      and after 1950 it gradually increased. In 1970s,
      the number jumped drastically to more than 200
      cases per year. "There are more toxic algal species, more algal toxins, more fisheries resources affected, more food-web disruption, and more economic losses from harmful algal blooms than ever before"

      Often red tides occur when diatoms are scarce in surface water.
      However, diatoms form resting spores under conditions of
      nutrient limitation, especially of nitrogen, and
      they rapidly sink to the sea bottom.

      Another deterrent of red tides is by algicidal bacteria
      γ-proteobacteria and Pseudoalteromonas

      huge numbers of algicidal microorganisms
      associate on the surface of macroalgae such as
      Ulva and Gelidium.

      Algicidal microorganisms are also abundant in
      seawater at seaweed beds. There are also algicidal viruses.

      The ocean is a complex web of competing life. When you disrupt it with huge quantity of poison as per Fukushima, or nutrient increase, or…

      • CodeShutdown CodeShutdown

        heck, who wants to read the whole thing anyway…the effect of mans many disruptions of the natures established balance can be summed up in one word; Doh!

        "Most harmful algal blooms result from the transport of offshore
        populations to inshore regions, i.e., physical relocation independent of continental runnoff. The largest blooms observed, those of Trichodesmium in the open ocean, occur far from any coastal inputs. Blooms of Gymnodinium breve, responsible for neurotoxic shellfish poisoning, occur when cells from
        small, offshore populations in the open Gulf of Mexico are advected onto the west Florida shelf and into the coastal waters of other states bordering the Gulf of Mexico"

        Some of the causes of the increase in toxic algae blooms are;

        the introduction of exotic species via
        ballast water exchange or aquaculture practices

        Failure of algae grazers to control the population growth of toxic algae apecies

        climate changes, but we already know climate change is behind every bad thing..

        increased pollution and nutrient inputs, habitat degradation including dredging, resource harvesting, changes in river runnoff, eutrification and nuclear power plants

        • ftlt

          Code: You want to believe, so you believe.

          The denial of what we human are doing beyond nuclear on this website has become epically foolish.

          Never have I said FUFU was not a massive disaster. You can be certain, I'm not in denial of that.

          But all you need to do is go down from your door to see the damage we do everywhere every day. And, most of it is not nuclear.

          Your climate change denial is well noted. And, very suspect too.

          You dismiss all – even infrared thermal photos from space here?

          Climate Change is clearly driving this ocean temperature rise off the coast.

          While some on here have attributed higher ocean temps to FUFU itself – my goodness! WOW!

          It is well documented that acidification of the oceans driven by our higher man made CO2 levels can be linked algae blooms – This added to the higher CO2 levels from the same cause in today's oceans.

          **(I'm not leaving out most of the human impact driven nutrient waste/pollution we supply our coastal waters with – mostly non nuclear waste by the way)

          Yet, you reject the most obvious cause of this algae bloom out of hand, because it does not fit your sources that happen to be politically driven (bought and paid for) views on climate change.

          This site has gone mad searching for the Bigger Secret. There is no secret. It is right all there in front of you to see if you would just let yourself see it and stop denying it when you do see it.

          I am not denying FUFU. I don't think…

          • ftlt

            I am not denying FUFU. I don't think that the researchers are either.

            • Jebus Jebus

              I've stated as such and I agree past that summation ftlt.

              I think that most here know the state of the planets ecosystem prior to 3/11.

              Everyone knows it's not just Fukushima.

              Think milemarker.

              And as I said before, in addition, there comes a moment in time whereby a tipping point is achieved, and that point that is achieved, having such a long duration event attached to it, with the lackadaisical attitude towards the 3/11 prior ecological state, has set into motion secondary events that are accellerating the overall process of climate change.

              When one say's climate change, one must include everything. And that includes human attitude.

              Something has been set in motion and I don't see it slowing given the nature and timeframe of radionuclide contamination.

              The last dance is not happening today.

              Fukushima is. And will continue to be.

              The elephant is not named Fukushima.

              But I'm not sure if it would even remotely be an elephant, without Fukushima and the Tsunami Chemicals, taking such a toll.

              And I'm not hearing any good answers about tomorrow…

            • Jebus Jebus

              On a half full note. It's a precipice.

              Humans do their best when challenged…

              • obewanspeaks obewanspeaks

                Certainly we have a clusterf$ck on our hands..someone has to turn the money burners down!

              • ftlt

                Jeb: I'm not sure most do understand pre 3/11 on here. Too many deniers and ??? source links that prove my take.

                This is a web page filled with "Diobolicalists".

                As far as our world goes, we are clearly over the brink in free fall.

                It is now a just question of whether we will have a "bottleneck" event or a mass extinction. The planetary tipping points will determine which of these bad outcomes we suffer.

                Meanwhile, even our atmospheric oxygen is in free fall too – directly related to our hyper carbon releases.

                There is a screaming need for global rationing of all extracted products used. It is my feeling most on here would find objections to that on a political basis.

                Hell, there are commonly posted objections to a national healthcare system on here. OK, it's a lame corpo friendly and lousy one. But the objections are founded in the being opposed to the concept of providing general public healthcare being provided at all. Not the details of the current plan.

                Also, I have had a chance to talk to a number of researchers on the toxic West Coast ocean event. All say that radiation and nuclear pollution are being measured and considered – "not ignored". Radiation and nuclear pollution are not coming up as the prime culprit here. All say, it is the ocean temps that is the driver here. I believe them – these folks have nothing to lie about and are certainly not in denial of FUFU and the rest of Japan's EQ driven event impacts either.

            • CodeShutdown CodeShutdown

              ftlt, your post leads me to believe you didnt read mine. Thats OK, probably it was too long. I detailed many causes of toxic algae blooms, and other interesting factoids that round out the story.

              You said Fukushima has LITTLE TO NO effect. No effect = zero effect, and thats just…whats the word…stupid.

              You only believe I dont believe in climate change, just like you assume my belief in fukushima effects is driven by emotion or finance rather than observation and logical extrapolation. The fact is, I believe everything has an influence, and an overpopulated world is having a global impact. Desertification, fires, coal burning, methane…its all having an effect on climate.

              Carbon has been hijacked for financial motives; thats ugly.

              We have yet to see and will never know the total effect that 10,000 Hiroshima bombs worth of radiation and more will have on the ecosystem. That means you assume far more than I do, and your assumptions are not well founded.

          • cannotdo1 cannotdo1

            why dont u go to bill mckibbons site and if u think fufu is not as big a dealbas people here think? i dont think u really care about anything. not here to contribute much. just say fufu is not as big a deal. why dont u go where u think u can do some good?

    • cannotdo1 cannotdo1

      I do not understand what your trip is ftlt. Humans have been flooding the oceans with radionucleides for 70 years.

    • Is it truly CO2 or is it HTO?
      I think it is the latter, dude…
      And, the warm water? What do you believe created this? Just appeared/warmed out of nowhere?

      You may think you're smart, but you did not answer my question, phFFtt.
      Try TRITIUM/ TRITIATED Water, okay? Btw; Science has not found the TOXIN in the so-called Toxic-Algal-Bloom. So, before you again attempt to come off as a smartazzz, gather up some facts.

    • Ftlt

      Are you implying that the recent Pacific coast adverse mortality event are not related to Fukushima?

  • antipodes

    Here's one for your Stock, Cylindrical well bucket… fits any given well, 5 foot length by 4in diameter ,fills to almost 2 gallons, totally portable, you just need the adequate length of rope. This and many more nonelectric tools etc. from Lehmans .com

  • antipodes

    ftlt … 3 reactors at 5,000 degrees each in ground waters going into the ocean at 300 tons a day doesn't count? Let alone all the radioactivity heating it up. Ya right.

  • or-well

    I just got back
    from a trip to the future.
    They're so mad they're mass-hanging nukers!

    They don't care where!
    From lamp-posts and trees!
    They've had enough
    of nuke-induced disease!
    Nukers running like rats
    down neighborhood streets
    chased by kids with bats
    from The Little League!
    Before heads go SPLAT
    look at them plead!
    No use!
    Everyone wants to get in on the deed!
    Well, I can't blame them
    after all I have seen.
    Those folks now understand
    what rads do to genes.
    Hey – one thing –
    at least it's fairly quick.
    Beats being cooked slow,
    like a pig on a stick.


      I just got back
      from a trip to the future.
      They're so mad they're mass-hanging nukers
      You're the best or-well !!!
      This movie will be made in Japan…with ENEglish subtitles.

  • lickerface lickerface

    Perhaps the contamination has mutated the algae:

  • demise demise

    I think some people are getting the message. Just heard that a lot of coastal properties in Southern Ca are being sold and vacated by families heading east bound.

    It shows that not everyone drinks the govt cool-aid and there are intelligent people who are silent but speak with their wallets.

    Now California, collapsing at breakneck speed to support socialism will has to respond sooner or later with a batch of new lies about radiation contamination, but we know better.

  • rogerthat

    off topic, sort of, but worth reading imho:

    among the comments:


    When plunder becomes a way of life for a group of men in a society, over the course of time they create for themselves a legal system that authorizes it and a moral code that glorifies it.

    -Frederic Bastiat, 1848

    Laws exist to protect the lawmakers from the law-abiding.

    -Me, after I woke up from the Matrix

  • rogerthat

    Austria to file EU complaint against UK nuclear plant via yahoo!news
    Vienna (AFP) – Austria will next week officially file a legal complaint in Brussels against state subsidies for Britain’s planned new Hinkley Point nuclear power plant, the government in Vienna said Tuesday.

    “We cannot accept that a technology such as this being portrayed through subsidies as being modern, sustainable and future-oriented,” Chancellor Werner Faymann said after a cabinet meeting.

    The complaint, which Vienna had already threatened in September and which will be filed next Monday, “is also of symbolic value against nuclear power,” the centre-left Faymann said. …

  • rogerthat

    Top nuclear expert says reactor training lacking
    Jun. 24, 2015

    The top official of a group of nuclear energy experts says the Fukushima Daiichi accident has made it difficult for Japan to properly train enough nuclear specialists.

    Hiroshi Uetsuka, the new president of the Atomic Energy Society of Japan, told reporters on Wednesday that every research reactor housed at universities and other institutes across Japan is idled.

    Uetsuka said the operators of those institutes are unable to meet regulations that were revised following the nuclear accident. He said the budgets and staff for the research reactors have been cut.

    The president called the situation very serious because of the challenges that both decommissioning and restarting reactors present.

    He said his society will put together proposals to address the problem.

    Uetsuka said the cause of the Fukushima Daiichi accident is well understood, but investigations have yet to determine what exactly is going on inside the reactors.

    Uetsuka said the society will continue to study the accident. He said its members, along with officials of the Nuclear Regulation Authority and power companies, will discuss how to apply their findings to reactor regulations.

  • rogerthat

    Japan faces dilemma over plutonium stored in France

    Still dealing with the huge clean up after the Fukushima crisis and debating the future use of nuclear energy, the government now faces another conundrum — what to do with 16 tons of its plutonium sitting in France after being reprocessed there. …

    … Schneider, who is a contributor to a soon-to-be-released IPFM report on plutonium separation in nuclear power programs, said the alternative to taking back the plutonium would be to pay other countries to use it in their reactors.

    He said France would be one option, but that the cost would likely be high, especially as that country has its own stockpile to deplete. He did not give an exact cost.

    “Giving its plutonium away and paying for it would expose the Japanese to the reality of plutonium as a liability rather than an asset,” Schneider said. …

  • rogerthat

    Fukushima Daiichi Tank Dismantling Explained
    June 24th, 2015

  • rogerthat

    tepco success story lol:

    … The entities concluded that TEPCO, the operator of the crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant, has been successful in cutting costs. …

  • rogerthat

    U.S. appeals court backs claim under state law in Rocky Flats saga


    A U.S. appeals court ruled on Tuesday a decades-old pollution case over nuclear weapons production in Colorado should be sent back to the district court which in 2006 ordered companies that ran the facility to pay damages of $353 million.

    "This long lingering litigation deserves to find resolution soon," wrote one of the judges, Neil Gorsuch, about a case dating back to the 1980s, when Dow Chemical Co. and a unit of Rockwell Automation Inc were involved in operating the Rocky Flats plant.

    After a four-month trial nine years ago, a federal jury awarded the nine-figure damages to 12,000 property owners who said their land was contaminated by the facility, which made triggers for nuclear bombs 16 miles (25.7 km) northwest of downtown Denver.

    The companies appealed, arguing the district court had failed to instruct the jury properly. The 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals agreed and in 2010 it vacated the judgment and remanded the case for further proceedings.

    The companies had successfully argued that the plaintiffs failed to prove a "nuclear incident" took place under the terms of the federal Price-Anderson Act, which among other things can limit operators' liability.

    But the property owners countered that they had proved a nuisance claim case under…

    • rogerthat

      state tort law. The companies challenged those assertions, and the district court sided with them, returning the case to the appeals court.

      Writing for the majority in Tuesday's verdict of a three-judge panel, 10th Circuit Judge Gorsuch said that in two separate appeals spanning many years the defendants had found "no lawful impediment to the entry of a state law nuisance judgment on the existing verdict."

      He said the lawsuit took a "titanic" 15 years to reach the jury the first time round, and he said all parties had endured staggering delays and expenses.

      "We can imagine only injustice flowing from any effort to gin up the machinery of trial for a second pass over terrain it took fifteen years for the first trial to mow through."

      When the district court receives this case, Gorsuch wrote, "it should proceed to judgment on the existing nuisance verdict promptly… This long lingering litigation deserves to find resolution soon."

      Representatives of Rockwell and Dow did not immediately respond to messages seeking comment on the ruling.

      (Reporting by Daniel Wallis)

  • rogerthat

    Huge nuclear reactor set to close in Sweden
    Published: 24 Jun 2015

    One of Sweden’s biggest nuclear reactors, Oskarshamn 2 looks set to close in the next few years, the German energy group which runs it has announced.

    Sweden to speed up nuclear reactors closure (28 Apr 15)

  • rogerthat

    Army Corps finds more radioactive contamination along Coldwater Creek

    The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has found more radioactive contamination along Coldwater Creek.

    The Corps recently collected more than 4,000 samples along a 3.4-mile stretch of creek north of Lambert airport, between Frost Avenue and St. Denis Bridge.

    That includes a mostly residential area north of Interstate 270.

    Corps spokesperson Mike Petersen said some radioactive contamination was found in the creek's floodplain, but he would not confirm whether any homes were affected. …

    In September 2014, the Missouri Department of Natural Resources sent a letter to the Pentagon in Washington, asking the Army to prioritize funding for its cleanup of radioactive waste sites in St. Louis, citing residential areas along Coldwater Creek as of particular concern. "Utility and road crews frequently dig into these soils. Children play on them. We believe that rapid and complete remediation is needed to address this concern," the letter stated.

    The Army finally responded seven months later. In that response letter, Assistant Secretary of the Army Jo-Ellen Darcy did not commit to any additional funding. Instead she urged Missouri's DNR to share its concerns with the Army Corps' St. Louis District team, which is responsible for the Coldwater Creek clean-up. …

    • rogerthat

      Meanwhile, the St. Louis County Department of Public Health has started preliminary work on a study of cancer cases among current and former residents of the neighborhoods along the creek. According to Faisal Khan, the department's director, his staff will start recruiting study participants by early December. …

  • rogerthat

    AG says DOE should not get more time to empty Hanford tanks
    Associated Press June 23, 2015

    RICHLAND, Wash. – State Attorney General Bob Ferguson says the U.S. Department of Energy should not get more time to empty the next group of Hanford nuclear waste tanks.

    Earlier this month, the Energy Department proposed extending deadlines for retrieving radioactive waste from nine leak-prone tanks for one year, giving it until fall 2023 to complete the work.

    The agency says the delay is needed because requiring air respirators for most workers as protection against chemical vapors reduces efficiency by 30 to 70 percent.

    The Tri-City Herald reports that Ferguson said Monday the Energy Department must meet agreed-upon timelines for Hanford cleanup.

    Hanford for decades made plutonium for nuclear weapons and is now is engaged in cleaning up the nation's largest collection of nuclear waste.

  • rogerthat

    Nagasaki team finds film of U.S. troops surveying city shortly after A-bomb attack
    June 24, 2015

    WASHINGTON–A Japanese delegation has discovered film footage of U.S. occupation forces surveying damage from the Aug. 9, 1945, atomic bombing of Nagasaki, less than two months after the attack on the city.

    The team from Nagasaki city confirmed the existence of the color film at the U.S. National Archives and Records Administration in Washington.

    The date of Sept. 23, 1945, is displayed at the beginning of the film, followed by footage of a U.S. soldier apparently near ground zero pointing at the devastated and debris-covered landscape and a point in the sky where the plutonium bomb apparently exploded.

    The soldier also talks about the collapsed wall of the former Urakami Branch Ward of Nagasaki Prison, which remains standing at the Nagasaki Peace Park.

    “The film is a precious document that casts light on the activities of the occupation forces on the day they landed in Nagasaki,” said Yoshitoshi Fukahori, an 86-year-old hibakusha atomic bombing survivor who was a member of the team.

    The same soldier in the film appeared in still photos that were featured in the U.S. military’s report on damage to buildings caused by the atomic bombing of Nagasaki. A Nagasaki city research team discovered the photos in the United States last year. …

  • rogerthat

    June 23, 2015

    Conflict of Interest by Maryland Regulator Should Prompt Reconsideration of Commission’s Approval of Exelon-Pepco Merger, Public Citizen Tells Court

    Days After Casting Deciding Vote to Approve Exelon’s Acquisition of Pepco, Maryland Public Service Commissioner Took Job With Exelon-Funded Group

    WASHINGTON, D.C. – Citing an apparent conflict of interest of a commissioner who voted for Exelon’s takeover of Pepco, Public Citizen is calling for a court to review the Maryland Public Service Commission’s (PSC) vote to approve the merger.

    Public Citizen late Monday sent a petition (PDF) for judicial review to the Circuit Court for Queen Anne’s County. The organization wants the court to review the PSC’s May 15 decision to approve Exelon Corp.’s acquisition of Pepco. The PSC voted 3-2, with then-Commissioner Kelly Speakes-Backman casting a deciding vote in favor of Exelon’s purchase.

    Just days later, on May 28, the Alliance to Save Energy (ASE) announced it had hired Speakes-Backman as the company’s senior vice president of policy and research.

    ASE has direct and significant financial ties to Exelon Corp. Exelon’s senior executive vice president and chief strategy officer, William Von Hoene, serves as the first vice chair of ASE’s board of directors.

    In addition, Exelon’s Von Hoene serves as one of only five members of “The Honorable Charles H. Percy Society,” the highest level of…

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      of ASE’s leadership giving program, in recognition of Exelon’s financial support of ASE.

      Public Citizen learned that Speakes-Backman began the process of interviewing with ASE for employment as early as February 2015.

      “Speakes-Backman’s failure to recuse herself from voting on the Exelon-Pepco merger while negotiating employment with an organization tied to and financed by Exelon Corp. constitutes a clear conflict of interest,” said Tyson Slocum, director of Public Citizen’s Energy Program. “As a result, the court must invalidate the PSC’s approval of the Exelon-Pepco transaction, and remand it back to the commission for reconsideration.”

      Slocum noted that Susan Tierney, Ph.D., one of the witnesses for Exelon whose testimony focused on economic and policy benefits of the transaction, is listed on the website of the Alliance to Save Energy as a board member.

      Public Citizen was an intervenor in the initial case to determine whether the acquisition of Pepco by Exelon was consistent with the public interest. Along with the Maryland Attorney General, the Maryland People’s Counsel, nine Montgomery County Councilmembers and a number of public interest groups, Public Citizen called on the commission to reject the merger after determining that it would lead to higher electric bills and would hamper efforts to boost the use of renewable energy. …

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        “The evidence of this case alone is grounds for blocking the merger, but the alleged impropriety by which it was approved demands that this case be returned to the Maryland Public Service Commission,” Slocum said.

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    Iraq's unending woes

    MENAFN – Daily News Egypt – 23/06/2015

    Iraq's dismal health situation is testimony to the invasion of the country by foreign forces, including now the takeover of important parts of its territory by "Islamic State" (IS). The Iraqi people have been the subject of mass executions, rape, torture and, in addition, the destruction of the country's infrastructure. The international community has been mostly deaf to the needs of Iraqis, who have undergone difficulties much greater those they faced during the regime of Saddam Hussein.

    Margaret Chan, the World Health Organization Director-General, recently said: "The situation is bad, really bad, and rapidly getting worse," as she launched a new humanitarian plan for Iraq. If they don't receive appropriate support, 84% of all health projects and centres run the risk of closure before the end of June.

    It is estimated that since January 2014, 2.9 million people have fled their homes, 6.9 million Iraqis need immediate access to essential health services, and 7.1 million need easier access to water, sanitation and hygiene assistance. Presently, 8.2 million people in Iraq need immediate humanitarian support.

    Women and children have not been spared the brutal consequences of the war. …

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      Survivors of gender-based violence and rape experience trauma and depression, and suicides among women and girls have risen markedly in recent years. Children's health status has deteriorated markedly in the last 12 years. In addition, they have been used as suicide bombers and human shields and have been killed by crucifixion or buried alive.

      Iraqis' health status is a reflection of the deterioration of the country's health system. Medical facilities, which in the 1980s were among the best in the Middle East, have deteriorated significantly after the 2003 invasion. It is estimated that during the war 12% of hospitals and the country's two main public health laboratories were destroyed.

      Sanitary conditions in hospitals remain unsatisfactory, and medications and trained personnel are in short supply. Even basic healthcare is unavailable in regions of the country under armed conflict. As a result of the collapsed sanitation infrastructure, the incidence of cholera, dysentery and typhoid fever has increased. Malnutrition among children and other childhood diseases have also increased.

      Doctors in the thousands have been leaving the country, and those that remain are under constant threat to their personal safety. As Mdecins sans Frontires (MSF) stated: "Until now, it is extremely difficult to find Iraqi doctors willing to work in certain areas because they fear for their security."

      Despite some government aid and reconstruction plans, several remote areas …

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        are excluded from state reconstruction and development efforts, leaving thousands of Iraqis without access to essential healthcare up to this day. As a result, thousands of Iraqis are obliged to sell their homes and possessions to seek healthcare abroad.

        The widespread environmental damage caused by the war, including the degradation of forests and wetlands, destruction of wildlife, and increased air pollution, will have long-term impacts on people's health. In addition, medical researchers have expressed their concern about people's health being seriously affected by the use of white phosphorus and depleted uranium by American and British forces.

        The continuing conflict has exacted a heavy toll on all Iraqis' mental health and quality of life. "Many Iraqis have been pushed to their absolute limit as decades of conflict and instability has wreaked devastation. Mentally exhausted by their experiences, many struggle to understand what is happening to them. The feelings of isolation and hopelessness are compounded by the taboo associated with mental health issues and the lack of mental healthcare services that people can turn to for help," said Helen O'Neill, MSF's head of mission in Iraq.

        We are facing nothing less than the almost total destruction of a country by an ill-advised invasion whose consequences are still being felt. Someday, somebody will have to respond for it.

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