February 7, 2012

First US Nuclear Repository a Distant Dream even as Several Needed

USA has the largest amount of spent nuclear waste in the world and it does not have a single permanent nuclear waste storage site. It is quite shocking that thousands of tons of dangerous nuclear waste is put in temporary locations waiting to start a new disaster in the Fukushima pattern. Note the greatest danger and fallout from the recent nuclear disaster was due to spent nuclear rods . The first site that was being prepared in Yucata mountains is mired in controversy despite millions of dollars being spent.
July 7, 2011

Benefits of Nuclear Energy for World Environment – For and Against

Nuclear Energy has become a hugely contorversial topic after the Fukushima incident in Japan where a nuclear disaster took place because of the earthquake and tsunami.Both the pro and anti nuclear groups have come out with strident arguments for and against nuclear energy.However in some countries like Germany,Switzerland the anti nuclear sentiment has gained so much support that they have decided to permanently end nuclear electricity generation despite the high costs.Before this nuclear based power was gaining ascendancy leading many to call it a nuclear renaissance as countries like China and India made plans to increase their nuclear power plant capacities massively.But the nuclear accident has thrown a spanner in the works with huge protests being seen in India and China despite its authoritarianism also slowing down its nuclear expansion plans.
May 11, 2011

Japan to Kill New Nuclear Energy (Toshiba),Support Renewable Energy – Will India Learn (Jaitapur)

Nuclear Energy has been dealt a very heavy blow with Japan deciding to stop building any new nuclear plants from now onwards.PM Kan in a dramatic move announced that Japan's plan to build 14 new nuclear reactors which would increase the share of nuclear power to 50% from 30% has been canceled.The new energy plan of Japan will have more focus on renewable energy and energy efficiency.Note Germany had already shut down 7 of its old nuclear plants with immediate effect following the Fukushima disaster.These nuclear reactors have almost no chance of being started back as hundreds of thousands of German protested against nuclear energy and the Green Party won its first government in Germany.Italy and Switzerland too have put their nuclear power plants under review while other countries too are slowing down the approval process for new nuclear reactors.Nuclear Power in its current form seems to be dying in the developed world with other developed countries too facing opposition to nuclear plants.Note the effects of Nuclear Radiation are quite deadly and widespread even in lower doses or sieverts as was brought to the fore during the Fukushima disaster.It can lead to billions of dollars in lost economic activity.Already 3 major disasters have unfolded in the last 40 years in USA,Russia and Japan despite the safety touted by the Nuclear Industry.
April 13, 2011

Nuclear Waste Recycling – Why the USA does not do it and France,Japan do,Utility and Problems with Nuclear Reprocessing

Nuclear Recycling is the processing of the nuclear waste generated from the nuclear fuel cycle to extract useful elements like uranium and plutonium which can reused again in the Nuclear Fuel Cycle to generate electricity.About 97% of the used fuel can be recycled leaving only 3% as high-level waste. The recyclable portion is mostly uranium depleted to less than 1% U-235, with some plutonium, which is most valuable. Arising from a year's operation of a typical l000 MWe nuclear reactor, about 230 kilograms of plutonium (1% of the spent fuel) is separated in reprocessing. This can be used in fresh mixed oxide (MOX) fuel (but not weapons, due its composition). MOX fuel fabrication occurs in Europe, with some 25 years of operating experience. The main plant is in France, and started up in 1995.Major commercial reprocessing plants are operating in France and UK, with capacity of almost 5000 tonnes of used fuel per year, - equivalent to at least one third of the world's annual output. A total of some 90,000 tonnes of spent fuel has been reprocessed at these over 40 years.
April 13, 2011

Nuclear Waste Accidents – Happens with Alarming Regularity (USA,France,India,Brazil)

Nuclear Waste is one of the biggest disadvantages of Nuclear Energy generation apart from the dangers of nuclear reactor accidents,weapons proliferation etc.Governments around the world have mismanaged Nuclear Waste Management leaving the solution to another day.This procrastination has led to thousands of tons of nuclear waste being stored in temporary dry cask and wet pools.This High Level Nuclear Waste poses a big danger to human health from nuclear waste effects.Nuclear Energy proponents say that Nuclear Energy is quite safe with numerous safeguards but Nuclear Waste Accidents happen with alarming regularity around the world leading to a number of Radiation Deaths.Nuclear Waste Accidents and Deaths are even reported in countries which don't have Nuclear Power as Nuclear Waste is dumped in developing countries which have little environmental safeguards.Here is a list of some of the major nuclear waste accidents that have happened.
April 13, 2011

Effects of Nuclear Waste – Mostly Negative for Life

Nuclear Waste is generally a variety of solids,liquids and gases which are produced during the generation of nuclear energy during fission,mining of uranium,nuclear research and weapons production. They are normally classified as low-level, medium-level or high-level wastes, according to the amount and types of radioactivity in them.Nuclear Waste is radioactive and that is the primary cause of the negative effects on human health and bodies.Note Radiation iin small amounts do not cause any lasting damage as humans are exposed to natural radiation from radioactive deposits occurring naturally beneath the earth.However large doses or prolonged exposure to moderate radiation can lead to permanent problems and even lead to death.Note Nuclear Storage Policies are a complete mess around the world with no permanent geological sites being approved.
April 13, 2011

Nuclear Waste Storage – A Complete Mess with Lack of Policy ,Temporary Nuclear Sites in USA,Japan and France waiting for a permanent Nuclear Facility

Nuclear Waste is one of the most difficult waste products to transport and store because of its dangerous radioactive effects.Given the long life of some of the transuranic elements Nuclear Waste has to be stored in a safe manner for thousands of years which is a tough given that the chances of leakage become enormous in such a long time scale.Storing of Nuclear Waste has to be performed in a extremely complicated manner which is also enormously costly.Also there are problems of NIMBY with Nuclear Waste Storage as nearby residents don't want such toxic waste stored anywhere close especially as it does not bring any economic or social benefits.Not there is no permanent storage site despite many decades of planning and billions of dollars being spent.While Japan and Europe reprocess the fuel in the hope that they will be used again that remains a dream with thousands of tons of HLW piling up.USA does not reprocess and also has more than 60,000 tons of nuclear waste waiting for a final home.Till then most of the spent nuclear fuel is being stored in spent fuel pools and dry casks making them vulnerable just like another Fukushima
April 13, 2011

What is Nuclear Waste – Types of Nuclear Waste (High,Low,Uranium Tailings,NORM,Spent Fuel Rods) and Generation

Nuclear Waste has come under sharp focus after the Fukushima Nuclear Disaster in which Spend Fuel Rods were one of the biggest causes of the radioactive emission which has led to the Japanese Accident being labelled as INES Level 7 which is equal to the Chernobyl Accident.One of the biggest disadvantages associated with Nuclear Energy is the problem of Nuclear Waste which is generated after the Nuclear Fuel (Uranium) is processed.The transuranic elements which are produced have half lives of hundreds of years making it a difficult proposition to transport,handle and dispose them.A Number of Nuclear Plants have not factored in the high costs of Nuclear Waste Disposal making it another big issue in the problem of Nuclear Waste Nuclear Waste is the biggest con of Nuclear Electricity after the potential risks of a plant meltdown.Note Nuclear Waste is an ongoing problem and it has not been resolved in the USA where a permanent facility at Yucca mountains has run into a massive controversy.The long life of High Level Nuclear Waste,its pernicious effects on human health and difficulty in handling and storing make it difficult problem.However Nuclear Electricity forms almost 15% of the global electricity production and the tons of Nuclear Waste have to be dealt with however problematic and dangerous it might be
April 12, 2011

High Levels of Cesium Radiation 2.19 million becquerels (Chernobyl -550,000) 30 kms outside Fukushima Evacuation Zone forces INES to raise Danger Level to 7 from 5 – Why did Japanese Government ignore earlier Greenpeace,IAEA Warning

A study of soil samples conducted by a team of experts from Kyoto University and Hiroshima University has revealed that as much as 400 times the normal levels of radiation could remain in communities beyond a 30-kilometer radius from the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant.The study found cesium-137 at levels between about 590,000 and 2.19 million becquerels per cubic meter.After the Chernobyl nuclear accident in the former Soviet Union in 1986, residents who lived in areas where cesium-137 levels exceeded 555,000 becquerels were forced to move elsewhere.
April 8, 2011

Onagawa Nuclear Power Plant Spills Radioactive Water after 7.4 March 11 Aftershock Sendai Earthquake- 4 Killed,Massive Brownouts

TEPCO the owner and operator of the Damaged Fukushima Nuclear Plant reproted that its Onagawa Nuclear Power Plant in the Miyage Prefeture also leaked very small amounts of radioactive water.About 3.8 kgs of radiated water from one of the spent fuel rod pools spilled as three out of four external power supply units in Onagawa shut down leaving only one power source to cool the spent fuel. at the Nuclear Plant failed after the 7.4 Richter Scale Earthquake off the seas near Fukushima.The cooling systems have been restored and there is no more damage at the Nuclear Plant like Fukushima.Note the workers at the Damaged Dai-ichi were evacuated due to the Tsunami Warning issued in the aftermath of the Earthquake.These workers have again returned in their radiation fighting work at the Plant.USA said that it seems that the worst scenario of serious contamination from the Fukushima Nuclear Accident has probably passed.
April 7, 2011

Radioactive Rain in Seoul,Radiated Spinach in China,Japan may enlarge 20 Kms Exlusion Zone in Fukushima due to Long Term Exposure

Seoul witnessed Radioactive Rain as winds blew from neighboring Japan which has witnessed the second biggest nuclear energy accident after Chernobyl.Though the the Rain contains cesium and iodine particles they are well within the safety limits according to the South Korean Nuclear Safety Regulator.South Korea has already protested against the lack of information about the Nuclear Emissions and the Deliberate Dumping of Toxic Seawater by TEPCO.However many schoolchildren stayed at home as worried parents were concerned about the impact of the radiation.China the other major close nation in proximity to Japan has also detected low levels of iodine in spinach in 3 provinces.China had earlier reported trace levels of radiation in Guangdong and Shanghai.Note Iodine has a very low half-life so that problem should not persist for long.However cesium is another matter as it can lodge inside human body and keep emitting for a long time internally.
April 6, 2011

Indefinite Water Cooling may Backfire in Fukushima Nuclear Reactors,Nitrogen Injection to prevent Hydrogen Explosion,Countries ban Japanese Food,TEPCO Meager Compensation Refused

The ongoing problems at the stricken Japanese Nuclear Plant at Fukushima may see new problems given the prolonged cooling by water.Note it has already manifested itself as 11,500 tons of radiated water was dumped into the Pacific leading to protests from South Korea and dangerously contaminated fish.Further problems may arise as NY Times reports from a nuclear assessment report on each of the 6 reactors at the Dai-ichi plant.The tons of seawater being used to cool the temperature could result in a dangerous structural damage to the containment vessels of the reactors.Note this unconventional cooling of the Nuclear Plant may give rise to unthought of problems and complications.The spent fuel rods where hydrogen is being generated may react violently with oxygen in the air leading to violent explosion as was seen in Reactor 2 in the early part of the crisis.Salt has also been accumulating in the reactor from the seawater which may prevent circulation of newly added water.
April 5, 2011

Is it Illegal Deliberate Dumping of Radiated Wauster as Iodine,Cesium found in Japanese Fish ,South Korea concerned,Russian Nuclear Sub Dismantler Landysh Requested

The massive dumping of radiation seawater by TEPCO into the Pacific Ocean has triggered outrage amongst various stakeholder groups.Fishermen are angry at is will massively affect the marine life who are bound to get poisoned by the 11,500 tons of radioactive water which is 100 times over the legal limit.A fishing industry group in Fukushima prefecture has asked Tepco to stop releasing toxic water into the sea near the power plant as Radioactive iodine and cesium were found in fish caught off the coast of Ibaraki, north of Tokyo.The Fishermen are already facing a bad time are bound to get hit even worse from this.Green Groups are protesting this deliberate ejection and say that it might be unethical to dump the water if not illegal under international laws.Green Groups are protesting the fact that more efforts could not have been made to store the water in ship tankers or overland facilities instead of taking the easy way out and dumping it in the Pacific.Note the radioactivity spewed from the Japanese Nuclear Plants is affecting nations globally.South Korea which lies very close to Japan has expressed concerns over the toxic water being dumped into the ocean.
April 4, 2011

Fukushima Nuclear Plant to Eject 11500 Tons of 100 Times Radioactive Water into the Pacific as Storage Fills up – Marine Life Affected

Marine Life is expected to be badly affected from the radioactive water.Note IAEA has already found high levels of radiation well beyond the evacuation zone and Greenpeace too has warned about high levels of radioactivtiy.TEPCO has its reputation badly tarnished as it has failed to disclose the levels of radiation and different radioactive elements like Cesium.Note the Japanese Farmers are already facing years of losses and the Fishermen too seems destined to join them as the thousands of tons of water will probably lead to Fishes becoming toxic in that region.
April 3, 2011

Crack in Reactor 2 fails to get sealed by concrete leaks highly radioactive water,Fukushima Farmers get hit hard,TEPCO partial nationalization imminent

A crack in a concrete pit near the Reactor 2 of the Fukushima Plant has been found to be the source of leakage of highly radioactive seawater which was said to reach around 4585 times the legal limit.TEPCO had found the crack in a pit near the Reactor 2 which was leaking this dangerous seawater which was being used to cool the damaged nuclear reactors.An attempt to fill the crack in the pit by pouring concrete failed as the water made the sealing process through concrete impossible.Now a new polymer will be tried to seal the crack though it beats me why it did not occur to the engineers there that the water will make the process of pouring concrete fail.After almost 4 weeks since the nuclear crisis began in Japan operators of the plant are no closer to regaining control of damaged reactors, as fuel rods remain overheated and high levels of radiation are flowing into the sea.