Washington Post: Nuclear plant produces snow in Pennsylvania — “I’ve never seen this particular phenomenon observed before” (PHOTO)

Published: January 23rd, 2013 at 2:01 pm ET


Source: US National Weather Service Pittsburgh PA
Date: Jan. 22, 2012 at ~9:00p ET

Check out the band of snow being generated by the Beaver Valley Nuclear Power Plant near Shippingport. Up to an inch of snow has fallen as a result of the steam billowing from the stacks.

Title: Nuclear power plant produces snow in southwest Pennsylvania
Source: The Washington Post
Author: Jason Samenow
Date: 01/23/2013

Nuclear power plant produces snow in southwest Pennsylvania

[…] I’ve never seen this particular phenomenon observed before but it makes physical sense. […]

US National Weather Service Pittsburgh, PA

More information here

Published: January 23rd, 2013 at 2:01 pm ET


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57 comments to Washington Post: Nuclear plant produces snow in Pennsylvania — “I’ve never seen this particular phenomenon observed before” (PHOTO)

  • krugthecaveman krugthecaveman

    "Hey kids look! A freak snow fall! Lets all run out and build a snowman! " Clean fuel my ass. They should be forced to make snow angels and I mean all nuke advocates and executives.

  • Anthony Anthony

    IT IS FALLOUT PEOPLE. Its a bit of a stretch for the writer to tie Nuke plants to being a beacon of awareness that human driven climate change is legitimate. I'm not doubting the change but it offends my better senses to allow a new, and deadly nuclear propaganda.

    • lam335 lam335

      re: FALLOUT

      Yes–this makes me wonder … if the nuke plant's steam can create snow, can it also create rain?

      In which case, tritium washout (among other things possibly washing out) likely occurs in rain in the vicinity of nuke plants all the time.

      Just another reason why we should be concerned that these things are so often built out in rural areas where they are surrounded by farmland (like TMI, which is surrounded by dairy farms that supply milk to Hershey, for example).

      • Anthony Anthony

        Exactly. I posted an article titled Why Chinese women don't get breast cancer (?), which interestingly pointed to a glaring difference between Chinese and Western diets and the target ended up being DAIRY. Chinese people, generally speaking shun dairy in all forms. Think about it, I think it makes sense that the secretions from another mammal meant to GROW that species BABY mammals might cause abnormal GROWTHS in the human MAMMARY glands. I can see an obvious potential for this theory. Till now, I was thinking the rise in the cancer rates over time may be influenced in the additives hormones etc that goes into dairy production – as we increased reliance on those, the rates has climbed in response. Lets say this theory is correct and that dairy has a negative affect on humans, specifically the MILK GLANDS in women. Your suggestion that dairys are in the path of even the emissions, for me thinking about breast CANCER, you really drive this hypotheses home for me. I'm thinking the dairy is a delivery to the glands and perhaps, radiation innocuously has probably been also delivered with the products.

        • or-well

          Anthony, that is changing. China is promoting increased consumption of milk and milk products.
          Has been for awhile.
          I don't know why.
          It's not something I've researched, I just know people who go there.

          • Anthony Anthony

            Well if the link is true, of course that's sad they are making the change. BUT, in a macabre Fukushima-esque perspective, it WILL give us a chance to watch the numbers for change. If we live that long I guess!

          • HoTaters HoTaters

            Surprising. A lot of Asians are lactose intolerant. Not a part of the traditional diet.

          • NoNukes NoNukes

            Wonder if China is promoting milk consumption now because calcium is radioprotective against Strontium 90.

            The Southern Hemisphere only got 1/4 of the radiation that the Northern Hemisphere got during the major nuclear testing era, but ended up with 1/2 of the Strontium 90 in their bones because of the lower amount of milk/calcium in the diet.

            “Cities in the Southern Hemisphere showed levels in bone about half
            those for cities of Western culture in the Northern Hemisphere in 1960, yet the
            fallout in the Southern Hemisphere is only one-fourth that in the Northern
            Hemisphere. This is attributed to differences in diet, with a higher milk
            component in the Northern Hemisphere”. [3]

            The human bones from the Southern Hemisphere held far more radio
            strontium than expected on the basis of fallout accumulation alone. Diet was
            known to be the cause of this increased uptake of radio strontium. The AEC
            identified the lack of concentrated calcium in the diet to be the cause of the
            higher southern hemispheric radio strontium uptake.

            A comparison of the radio strontium uptakes found in the diets of vegetarians
            and non vegetarians provides a measure of the relative protections offered by
            the dietary variants…" http://nuclearhistory.wordpress.com/2011/02/27/jaitapur-nuclear-protests-chavans-claims/

        • richard richard

          per chance Anthony, you may have something there with cows' milk.

          I do wonder though, 'western' people have been drinking milk for centuries.

          But one thing the prior centuries and china have (had) in common is no nuke power plants.

          I still considuer uranium and tritium to be contributors to cancers. Not that I'm in anyway qualfied to say… other than applying some deductive logic to the issue.

          But now that dairies near nukes has been mentioned, it starts to become a bit of a double whammy.

      • HoTaters HoTaters

        Yes, Krypton 85 effects in the atmosphere. Please see my post below.

      • ion jean ion jean

        Nothing says love like Hershey's *Strontium* Kisses…this brings me thoughts of Ernest Sternglass' Secret Fallout…he's the only radiological scientist who ever told the truth about Tritium levels routinely released from All nuke plants being a couple of orders of magnitude higher than published official fuzzy math versions

        Courtesy of the same agencies who routinely hire bad math and science students under the assumptions that exposure levels can be jacked up on zero threshold models

        Clean Energy my ass! It fills the environment with energy daggers of infintessimal size in infinite numbers…it's our Atomic American Legacy of Doom

        As I see my fair share of snowflakes, I often wonder what havoc a radionuclide atom might wreak upon the crystalline structure

        Wish someone down in PA with a microscope might check that out…

      • keshbach

        Speaking from personal experience when driving home on 422 East sometmes the steam from Limerick flows toward the highway and I can see it condense onto my windshield.

      • snowwy snowwy

        I used to live very close to a nuclear plant and I have seen snow being produced by the cooling towers. Everybody around it has seen it, also intense fog which was so dense that you could not see 20 yards ahead. However, I have not seen it produce proper rain drops but more like the wetness that you get from fog. There was also talk of unusually large earthworms and the occasional fish with signs of mutations. Everybody also knew that it was a leukemia hot spot.

    • Anthony Anthony

      Its always nice when a random stranger validates your line of thinking …… 🙂

      **"Need proof that human activities can influence the environment?"

      What, that the manifestation of cold air over warm initiates precipitation on a micro scale? Neat; very tidy dynamic here with entire set of cause and effect drivers allowing for certitude in attribution.

      It a categorical case of false equivalency to suggest this lesson can be applied to global climate dynamics and attribution for events on that scale. Though I am admittedly assuming that was your intent.**

      a: More eloquently indeed!

      • HoTaters HoTaters

        The explanation of "cause and effect" and the patronizing statement about "basic science" detract and distract. There is likely a link between the release of Krypton 85 and precipitation downwind of the plant (or some other radiation related issue).

  • Is it just steam?

    Does it contain ANY radioactive or toxic contamination?

    Possible answers:
    1. Never
    2. Maybe
    3. Unknown
    4. Sometimes
    5. Always

    Would people be informed if it did?

    Yes, they may be told… "There is no immediate concern."
    (my opinion)

    Here's a point:
    Causing a heavy snow line like this would cause 'other' airborne 'pollutants' in the air to come down to the ground that would have formally blown over. Making that strip and others nearby more environmentally impacted than had there not been a Nuclear Power plant.

    Of course if children and farms are under those mini-plumes, then…?

    On a much larger scale. (understatement) The plumes from Fukushima continue to circle the globe and 'some' will come down as fallout with the snow and rain.

    • lam335 lam335

      What are the odds that it contains TRITIUM!!!

      If anyone's interested in the organized, team snowball fighting (yukigassen), this snow might be especially good training for the world championships in Japan:


      • Time Is Short Time Is Short

        Well I turned around and I said oh, oh oh
        Well I turned around and I said oh, oh oh
        Well I turned around and I said ho, ho
        And the northern lights commenced to glow
        And she said, with a tear in her eye
        Watch out where the huskies go, and don't you eat that tritium snow
        Watch out where the huskies go, and don't you eat that tritium snow

        – Frank Zappa (paraphrased)

        • HoTaters HoTaters

          Good take on a classic. He came up with classic lines like, "I am the slime on your video, oozing along on your living room floor."

    • Anthony Anthony

      Of course, where else would our background radiation come from? Testing that well marked snowline would be intelligent. It should be concentrated in the snow.

  • lam335 lam335

    Maybe they should build some nuclear reactors up in the Poconos. They could simultaneously supply electricity and snow to the ski resorts up there.

    (said sarcastically, of course)

  • many moons

    Where are the scientist who have created this monster…why aren't they taking samples and reporting on their findings???
    Why do we let these fools run down our right to live without being contaminated in the name of greed?

    How long will we permit others and ourselves to be considered a hinderence to the progression of greed?

    Everybody…boycott, strike,…just say no to poison…

    • lam335 lam335

      re: "Why do we let these fools run down our right to live without being contaminated in the name of greed?"

      Because "we" (the people) can only act through our elected representatives/leaders, and they receive massive amounts of $$$ from the industry (and some even go on to do "consulting" work for it after they leave office … quid pro quo …).

      It's the same reason we're on track to get radioactive, recycled power plant metal in our silverware and pots and pans (not to mention our teenagers' braces and assorted medical implants).

      • HoTaters HoTaters

        Am not planning to buy much new metal in the near future, especially not to put next to my body. I wonder if it will be shipped to China for re-fabrication. Will Hilary broker that deal? Sheesh!

        • HoTaters HoTaters

          Most of the radioactive metal will likely go offshore before coming back into other countries and the U.S. And/or make stops at "value added" tariff free zones here and there around the globe.

          Likely less paper trail as a result, and less likely to be tracked back to its source. Avoid allwoing a chain of liability to be established at all costs, right?

          We need look no further than the burning of radioactive waste in Japan to see that principle reduced to practice.

    • richard richard

      zero tolerance only, globally. anything above that threshold has to stop. 😉

  • PhilipUpNorth PhilipUpNorth

    Beaver Valley Nuclear Power Plant is cooled with cooling towers.
    The water that you see evaporating as steam, and the source of the radar signatures, is from the cooling towers. It is not from the reactor. The cooling loop is separated from the water in the reactor. Here is a closeup of the cooling towers:
    Many thanks to the photographer!

  • snukey

    Someone in the area should go out and test it for hotness.

    • moonshellblue moonshellblue

      I live about 30 miles west of Harrisburg, PA. and the dusting of snow was below 100CPM using an Inspector geiger counter which made me feel better but NO NUKES.

  • This same radar signature was seen in Northern Illinois yesterday, except there were 3 areas, not one, that were doing this as well. I have to find the person who posted it, they had a screenshot.

    Sent to Mike Bettes also for his opinion.

    • HoTaters HoTaters

      Here's something from left field:


      (California Skywatch, founded by Rosalind Peterson, a former USDA employee)

      We know DARPA is doing studies, centered around "studying global warming." DARPA discusses putting metallic ions into the atmosphere in a white paper, on its website.

      California Skywatch and many other entities have documented Barium and Aluminum (metallic) ions in the water at unnatural concentrations, since the "chemtrails" appeared en masse, around 1997. (See DARPA website and military document, "Owning the Weather in 2025.")

      DARPA and the military are openly discussing weather modification, & HAARP is studying atmospheric manipulation. Stated openly, in plan view of public. Don't care to be called a "conspiracy theorist."

      That being said, is it possible the ions, charged by something like HAARP, might be attenuated so that the plume can be directed in a particular directon? HAARP exists. We know the HAAEP project is studying effects of super heating the ionosphere. Might it be possible ionized particles in the atmosphere are reacting with Tritium, Kyrpton 85, or something else coming from the plant, and come to earth as snow, or some form of precipitation?

      What if this is being done intentionally to bring fallout from a plume down, as precipitation? Some form of testing, or something run amock at the PA plant? CPM counts @ Limerick and elsewhere in PA for at least a year, per Radiation…

      • HoTaters HoTaters

        I'm not a chemist, so I have no idea how a Barium compound or an Aluminum compound, or other "chemtrail" components might interact with radioactive isotopes coming out of the stack of a nuke plant.

        Just always get suspicious whenever something like this happens, and wonder if the mad tinkerers are at work, once again.

        They won't leave our atmosphere alone, why not do a study in the "living lab" of the earth? What the heck is stopping them, they've been at it for about 70 years now.

    • HoTaters HoTaters

      Someone here recently commented on how radiation (some isotope?) is responsible for producing gigantic snowflakes.

      If you're out there, would you please chime in?

      • moonshellblue moonshellblue

        Hmm I did see some of those giant snowflakes this morning and checked with my Inspector and it was around 80 CPM thus a tad higher than background but below 100 CPM's which is better than hearing the constant chirping and watching it go beyond 100 CPM NO NUKES

  • jec jec

    Those three streams of "steam" are they coming from nuclear plants? If so, what are the regs for venting? I thought it has to be announced or at least logged…silly question.huh?

  • HoTaters HoTaters

    Krypton 85?

    Someone posted here in Fall of 2011 link to scientific article showing Krypton 85 is responsible for causing storms with massive precipitation, and thunderstorms.

    As for snow, I don't know. Strange.


    The study shows Krypton 85 interferes with the water balance of earth's atmosphere. Here's a quote:

    "The study shows that krypton-85 from nuclear fission enhances air ionization and, thus, interferes with the atmospheric-electrical system and the water balance of the earth atmosphere. This is reason for concern: There are unforeseeable effects for weather and climate if the krypton-85 content of the earth atmosphere continues to rise. There may be a krypton-specific greenhouse effect and a collapse of the natural atmospheric-electrical field. In addition, human well-being may be expected to be impaired as a result of the diminished atmospheric-electrical field. There is also the risk of radiochemical actions and effects caused-by krypton-85-containing plumes in other air-borne pollutants like the latters' transformation to aggressive oxidants. This implies radiation smog and more acid rain in the countries exposed. This study summarizes findings gained in these issues by various sciences, analyses them and elaborates hypotheses on the actions and effects of krypton-85 on the air, the atmosphere and the climate."

    A real cause for global warming? And note the part about being transformed to an…

    • HoTaters HoTaters

      Excuse me, I didn't mean "real" cause for global warming. I meant another possible cause.

    • HoTaters HoTaters

      What's the link (or possible link) between Tritium and precipitation, other than Tritium can be used as a tracer for water vapor?

      Hmmn, is this looking us smack in the face — i.e. are we seeing the signature of high tritium emissions before our very eyes?

      See this:

      "Use as an oceanic transient tracer"


    • HoTaters HoTaters

      Note the part in quote above here:


      where it says Krypton 85 can be transformed to "aggressive oxidants."

      The Barium and Aluminum in the "chemtrails" are also supposed to be highly corrosive and to cause high rates of oxidation.

      • HoTaters HoTaters

        Bottom line: I do not TRUST the people who are running these plants, nor the ones who are looking at what's coming out of them. At least not when they're in the "pro nuke" camp.

        • HoTaters HoTaters

          RE: Krypton 85:

          "Krypton-85 is the isotope of concern at Department of Energy (DOE) environmental management sites such as Hanford. It is produced by the
          fissioning of uranium and plutonium and is present in spent nuclear fuel. The low specific activity of krypton-81 limits its radioactive hazards."

          I think this article said there are three (3) atoms of Krypton 85 produced per 1,000 nuclear fissions.

          Likely not sufficient to produce precipitation, then.

          Back to Tritium? Or?

  • eatliesndie eatliesndie

    Wow. Have some Tritium.

  • ConnectingDots

    "…releases of tritiated water vapor from the stacks of nuclear power plants can result in radioactive rainfall, which can contaminate surface water bodies as well as groundwater"

    "As radioactive water, tritium can cross the placenta, posing some risk of birth defects and early pregnancy failures. Ingestion of tritiated water also increases cancer risk."


  • ConnectingDots

    All nuclear power plants release radiation during their daily operations.

    It's called "effluent."

    Here is Beaver Valley's 2011 Radioactive Effluent Release Report

    + Go to Page 41 for the list of radioactive effluent released

    + Page 42 shows the calculated dose for organs such as the liver, lungs, kidneys, etc.

  • enoughalready45 enoughalready45

    I just uploaded 2 videos on youtube, one more to come tomorrow. A couple days ago a radar map showing lake effect snow in Illinois from the nuclear cooling ponds was posted above in comments. It was not too far from me so I went out measured the radiation levels with my geiger counter. There are 3 bands of snow. I attempted to go out and test in the center of where each band was. I put the CPM reading in the description under the video if you just want to quickly see the numbers.
    (1 of 3)https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JGsz8gVxCOQ
    (2 of 3)https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-oLmsmUdORI
    (3 of 3) to come tomorrow

  • ugya ugya

    I found ML092100271.
    This is tritiated water(TOH) lake-effect snow patterns.

    1) Tritium exposure: US Pressurized Water Reactor (PWR) release between 400-800 Curies/year of tritium. At Nine Mile Point this tritium would be released into Lake Ontario or from the cooling tower in the form of tritiated water (TOH). In the winter months this water, because of its higher relative temperature, would evaporate, cool, crystalize and fall back to earth as snow. The colder the outside air, the shorter distance this water would travel before being deposited as snow. Thus it would seem that during the winter the deposition pattern of tritium would mirror the prevailing lake-effect snow patterns. But the colder the winter the more concentrated the tritium levels. Can you please construct a conservative model to estimate the maximum tritium annual deposition and compare this level to the allowed US dose limit for tritium.

  • pazsion

    Please correct me if i'm wrong… but there isn't sopposed to be water vapor present outside these towers, available for eaporation…unless it is venting….and that is usually a small ammount….

    This image would suggest that atleast 200 pounds or more of water that has passed the core…was being vented to the atmosphere. and that it is infact highly radioactive…

    nuke plants are used for weather modification. and have been known to help create high pressure systems. And also Heat an area.

  • pazsion

    I believe tritum is one like plutonium and uranium, that have no safe limits. less then .001 PPB i think it was. but has notes and evidence that support that no ammount can be considered safe. therefore a dose limit is not given. simply n/a or no safe limits. is often listed next to it.

    • guezilla

      Easy to Google. See http://pbadupws.nrc.gov/docs/ML1212/ML12124A108.pdf for example, "Beaver Valley Power Station – Units 1 & 2 Radioactive Effluent Release Report Calendar Year 2011". From "Liquid Release Activity (Tritium)" with note "The recent increases where due to efforts to reduce overall offsite does. Speficically, discharging liquid radioactive inventory provide the benefit of reduced total offsite dose, due to reduction in evaporative losses from the fuel pools." (Huh?)

      Shows fairly constant ~1000 Curies for this millennia. On a guess per unit; the graph is quite unclear on that. On the other "Gaseous Release Activity" does show a drop from ~200 Curies to below 10 Curies.

      Tritium is one of the unavoidable leaks that always come from nuclear power plants even in normal operation. During the Cold War, 225KG (500lb) were produced at Savannah River specifically for nuclear weapons. Watts Bar & Savannah have produced it for nuclear weapons in modern times, an they have to be careful not to exceed the allowed releases. "In 1976, EPA established a dose-based drinking water standard of 4 mrem per year to avoid the undesirable future contamination of public water supplies as a result of controllable human activities. In so doing, EPA set a maximum contaminant level of 20,000 picocuries per liter (pCi/L) for tritium."