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Anti-Nuclear groups POUNCE on the tragedy in Japan as an opportunity to shut down any future Nuclear Power development, but is this attack really FAIR?

Posted by mrfixit on March 13, 2011

First of all, the “experts” making the rounds on the news channels seem to all be from far left, anti-Nuclear power think tanks, so that alone ought to make their statements questionable, but even Fox News has failed to point out the clear agenda of the organizations these “experts” are connected with.

I think it is first important to note the unprecedented magnitude of the Japan Earthquake and Tsunami.  Japan may be the most prepared nation on the planet for such events, but clearly they could not prepare or expect a catastrophe of this magnitude.  Our prayers should be with those affected by this, for a quick recovery.  This was devastating!

So what kind of nuclear plant is involved?  Well, these are NOT new plants; in fact those involved are based on designs that date back about 40 years!  I think we ought to consider that much of the safeguards did work, but the effects of the Tsunami appear to be what wiped out the back up emergency diesels, and that prevented the needed power to keep core cooling in place to handle the decay heat.  Each and every plant did scram when the earthquake hit, as designed.

Perhaps the most in depth report I’ve seen so far that discusses the actual plant designs involved in this is this one:


I’ve been to one of these plants: VT Yankee.  It is far from state of the art technology, so when the attempt is made to compare the aftermath of what happened to the future development of much more advanced and much improved, modern designs, well it misses the mark.  To put this in perspective, compare the injuries from a crash in a 1972 car to the injuries from modern car.  Are you seeing the BIG difference?   Improvements in handling, safety, airbags, etc. all make the modern car far superior to any car built in 1972.

While it is true that some improvements and upgrades no doubt have been made since the construction of these older plants, you can do little to alter or improve the basic structure and nature of the reactor core and its primary systems, they are essentially permanent for the life of the plant, and the enormous cost pretty much requires a full life cycle of use to pay back that massive investment.  

So how does this compare with the proposed modern designs?  Well it is remarkable how much designs have improved.  Here is an example of a modern design:


Here is the Wikipedia article on the older BWR which shows the similar layout for the Japanese plants:

(This also shows the major improvements that are part of modern design, specifically as it pertains to core protection from exactly the kind of issue involved with a loss of cooling casualty)


 What is most important to keep in perspective in a time of crisis is to not allow emotions to solely guide future policy.  We have seen the results of this already.   The Three Mile Island disaster, even though not anywhere near as bad as what happened in many other accidents, was the event that stopped all other new construction nuclear plants in the US, and as a result we are no longer the world leader with the technology that the US pioneered.  We now rely on foreign experts, even the French, who have continued more advanced and safer nuclear power projects while those with an anti-development, anti-nuclear agenda in the US have been able to drive our policy direction based upon irrational emotions.  Even more inexplicable is that some of the same advocates against the US Nuclear industry are quite comfortable or even oblivious to the development of Nuclear Power in places like North Korea and Iran!  Places more interested in the production of plutonium than actual electrical power generation!   

Nuclear power can be, and has proven to be very safe, despite the recent events in Japan.  It is important to keep it in perspective, even with the problems at these plants, the earth quake and Tsunami did far more damage, and when put in perspective we might be better able to make RATIONAL decisions and learn from this tragedy and make sure any future designs take the lessons learned here to make sure we don’t repeat this history. 

To the anti-Nuclear left, this event is just another Rahm Emmanuel “good crisis not to waste”.  Truth and actual perspective do not matter to those who will do anything in pursuit of power and control over others.



Lots of Detail and context in this piece from the UK:



Something not previously considered, but now perhaps the biggest issue:  Spent fuel at the SHUTDOWN plant number 4!


This changes the equation a bit.  It is still not possible to have a Chernobyl, but this is really bad.  The spent fuel contains very high amounts of radioactive and even toxic materials.

If there is compromise of spent fuel cells, the local radiation levels will be quite high, but if the spent fuel is damaged and involved in a fire or explosion where it might become particulate dust and go airborne, well that would get it much closer to the Chernobyl, but that remains a long shot, and even then the size and scope of Chernobyl still eclipses what is possible even in the worst case in Japan.  So it is important to keep it all in context, especially when the left wing  groups are out to hype this to the extreme, and at the same time those groups are silent when it come to taking effective steps to stop Nuclear expansion in Iran and North Korea.  It is bad, maybe very bad, but it won’t be as bad a Chernobyl.

Since I do have some background in Nuclear Power, actually qualified as a Nuclear Plant Engineer, I did some math on this and pulled my memory to better understand what this article calls a massive radiation level.  It says 400 micro sv, the US Navy uses millirem (mrem), and REM is short for roentgen equivalent man.  This is measure of activity level and how it affects the human body.  I don’t have much experience with the SI units, so I converted.  

1 msv is 100 Mrem.  The legal allowed annual exposure in US Civilian Nuclear power is 5 REM per year, to 400 msv is equal to 40 Rem per hour, and that is significantly high, it indicates core materials or spent fuel cell damage and displacement from the containment and this is not good. It would be 8 times the maximum annual exposure in only one hour, but it takes about 100 REM per hour to see immediate health effects and radiation sickness, so as bad as it is, it is not yet an instant killer or cause of instant danger to even the workers on site, if this is the highest level on site.   This high level could in theory be sustained by a person for a short period of time and have no measurable long term health consequences.  With radiation the key to limiting exposure is limiting Time exposed, maximizing distance, and use of shielding.  The most dangerous exposure is actually low levels that are maintained for really long durations, and in particular Alpha radiation.  This is what makes naturally occurring radon gas a big concern, because during decay one of the particulate daughters emits an alpha particle which can do great biological damage in the lungs, and keep in mind radon is a gas that occurs in nature, not from man’s activity or nuclear power.  The good news about alpha is it is easy to block and as long as it stays out of the body, does little harm, your skin can block alpha radiation and it does not emit over large distances.  Also remember levels will be exponentially lower with greater distances away from the site and with atmospheric dispersion.

From the US NRC site, for perspective on what it takes to get 1 mrem:

For practical purposes, 1 R (exposure) = 1 rad (absorbed dose) = 1 rem or 1000 mrem (dose equivalent).

Note that a measure given in Ci tells the radioactivity of a substance, while a measure in rem (or mrem) tells the amount of energy that a radioactive source deposits in living tissue. For example, a person would receive a dose equivalent of 1 mrem from any one of the following activities:

  • 3 days of living in Atlanta
  • 2 days of living in Denver
  • 1 year of watching television (on average)
  • 1 year of wearing a watch with a luminous dial
  • 1 coast-to-coast airline flight
  • 1 year living next door to a normally operating nuclear power plant


For more on High Radiation doses check out the NRC site:


This one is far from over, and there are many issues that need analysis, it is clear that while the plants did withstand even a seismic event beyond their design, they did not hold up well with an extended loss of power, this is something that is now part of new plant designs, and we can now see why this safety improvement is so vital.


Updated, and succinct:




Don’t discount the selfless sacrifices of the rescue workers and those willing to even risk it all to save others.  Here we see in the efforts of those working to control this nuclear disaster, but we see this also with the sacrifices of Fire Fighters, Police, Military and countless others.  That we have such people amongst us and the nearly impossible odds they face and often overcome, well this is a miracle that takes place and it is one we often fail to recognize.


One of the problems now developing that I think many did not consider early on when struggling to keep cool the recently shutdown reactors, was what about the spent fuel storage pools in these facilities?

Well, not that there was much that might have been done without any power, but I think we now know this is perhaps now the biggest problem, and what is actually causing the elevated radiation levels, the spent fuel storage, and some US experts now say there is a loss of water for some spent fuel in one of the reactors that was actually already shutdown when the earthquake and tsunami hit.  This is a nuclear catastrophe, but to keep it in context, as bad as it is, it CAN’T become Chernobyl, which was an AT POWER explosion and fire, in a graphite (combustible) moderated core, which also had ZERO containment.  It is not conceivable for this to become that devastating, and let’s recall that the cloud from Chernobyl did spread radiation and real concerns throughout Europe, but it was NOT the end of the world. Keep it in context, it is very bad, but we survived worse, don’t panic or freak out.


Detailed pictures in this one: (As far as the hyper-active not helpful French comment, I think the Japanese just do not know all the information, and it is not easy to ascertain all the conditions on the ground.  From what I’ve seen the Japanese seem to be releasing as much as they know, matter of fact and remaining as calm and professional as possible, in fact more so than the French guy, that is for sure.

Yes it is not good, but what are the other options?  Tell the people it is the end of the world (when it is not) then have them all outside trying to get out, and then fully exposed and contaminated by the fall-out, when to stay calm, indoors and away from the fallout gives them a better chance of minimizing the effects?


Context is important, and when yelling “fire” in a crowded room to create panic, one has to consider whether the panic is justified, or if it might because more harm that calmly dealing with the situation.  The Japanese have to live this one, they have to consider the entire context, they can’t create panic if it will do more damage and is not warranted.

I don’t think they are hiding the danger, it is out there, they just aren’t calling it a catastrophe, because it is not, it is just really bad.


Here is the report which discusses missing radiation data:


Keep in mind there may be a not so nefarious reason for this, but still in an age where lying and deception have become all too common, clearly we have good reason to be concerned, but again perspective, this is not, and cannot be a Chernobyl which I described earlier.  So while it may be bad, it is not as bad as the Tsunami damage and death toll, and it is not cause to mass panic.

Those fighting to control the damage at the plant are at risk, but those miles away will likely have very little measureable effects from this, that is the reality. 

This is not the time to collapse the international economy over unwarranted fear.  Germany wants to shut down 7 of its 17 reactors.  What is that going to do to a fragile EU?  Economic disasters that will make this nuclear accident seem small….  PERSPECTIVE IS NEEDED HERE!   

Here is my post on that topic:


Recall the fact that these plants initially were intact from an earth quake beyond their design, and then a tsunami killed the diesels, which is why this is happening.  These are nearly 40 year old designs as well. 

If we reacted this way when the first gruesome car accidents began to occur, we would have gone back to the horse and buggy, how would your standard of living be now if we always overreacted this way?

Do you know that China has a hydro-electric dam so massive that if it ever failed it could wipe out about 200 Million people?  Should we dismantle that dam just to be extra safe as well?  NO obviously.  Life is not and will not ever be devoid of any risk.  Let’s be rational about this.

Here is more fear mongering: Plume to hit US!  OH NO! 


Typical example of NY Times garbage.  The Surgeon General wants you to have iodine for I 131 exposure, Well, I’d bet much, if not most of the radiation is now from the spent fuel, which contains very little I131, this is because it has an 8.3 day half life, and decays quickly in a shut down reactor.  5 half-lives it is essentially gone, that would be about 40 days, so spent fuel has a very low amount of I 131, and some small amounts of I 129, and the 129 version has a long half-life, but also in very small concentrations.

Here is what the US EPA has on radioactive iodine (also has access to others, and it is well done!):


I 131 is considered dangerous because it is readily absorbed in the thyroid and retained, unless the thyroid already has plenty of regular stable iodine, then it is passed out of the body and not retained, this is what the potassium iodine is all about.  However, NOTE Doctors can actually intentionally USE radioactive iodine for medical reasons to treat thyroid problems! Also the EPA warns: “Large doses of stable iodine can be a health hazard and should not be taken except in an emergency. However iodized table salt is an important means of acquiring essential non-radioactive iodine to maintain health.”

So if you are worried, pour on some iodized table salt and calm down!

I lived in the UK in 1986, the Chernobyl radiation was FAR worse that what we will see here, and it passed over where I was, it did create problems, but not widespread death or illness, and we did NOT get iodine as a precaution, and the UK is MUCH closer to the Chernobyl site than Japan is to the US west coast.

More perspective, my infant son had a kidney scan once and having interest I asked the medical staff how much and what type of radionuclide was used.   It was 1 milli curie of Technetium -99!  Normal limits for surface contamination for US facilities are about 450 pico curies per 100 square cm!  So the medical use dose was about 1 million times MORE radioactivity than maximum control levels used to limit occupational exposure in the nuclear industry, and it was OK, my son is still alive and well!

Here is what the EPA has on Technetium – 99:


Ever wonder what Chemo Therapy to cure cancer is all about?  Massive doses of radiation.

I’m quite sure I received much more radiation dose holding my son after that test than over 10 years of occupational dose in Navy Nuclear power!

There is NO rational reason for panic here.  PERSPECTIVE…

In other news, US Military develops miracle drug to cure radiation illness and prevent cancer effects from radiation!



Just in (17 March) electrical power is about to be restored, this will stabilize this crisis. Also this BBC piece has the best layman’s explanation in 12 slides that show the sequence of events at the plant:



Perspective, Wind power has killed more Americans than Nuclear power!


When are we going to order a review and halt to DANGEROUS wind power… Never, why not?


Perspective from a Nuclear BOMB survivor!  (66 years later and still alive!):



As with almost all disasters, somewhere in it we can find that lack of integrity, cover-ups, deception and unscrupulous selfish and greedy players were involved somewhere.   It seems clear there should have been a back up source of power able to withstand the Tsunami, but this report helps explain why that was not the case.



Radiation arrives in the USA, and it is one BILLION times below a level where health concerns are considered, as predicted:


Another update about high radiation levels which are making efforts difficult in Japan, with a very good comment from someone who seems well informed:


“ Nick_A at 5:30 PM March 17, 2011

    -“Still think nuclear power is safe and cheap?”

 Yes, absolutely. Especially compared to coal, or hydroelectric for that matter. Can you imagine what would happen if China’s three gorges dam let loose? Not to mention the widespread environmental impacts of these.

For those without education in radiation physics I understand the fear, but don’t make judgements about things which you know nothing about.

And no, you will not gain a reasonable comprehension of types, amounts, and effects of radiation by surfing the web.

Part of the problem is that theoretical long-term effects of  sublethal levels of radiation are typically too small to be definately tracked. All of our data is extrapolated from populations recieving very high doses of radiation, but often there may be a threshold dose below which there doesn’t seem to be negative long term effects.

Even assuming bad scenarios the theoretical long term loss of life would pale in comparison to the tsunami. It bothers me a bit to see everyone focusing on something that *might* (bad scenario) cause a hundred premature deaths 20 years from now, when over 10,000 people just got swept away. What I don’t think is safe is mother earth.

For an idea of what the future of nuclear power may hold check this out.

http://coe.berkeley.edu/labnotes/1002/reactor.html  “

Like so much else these days, those that know often have a very different perspective from the masses of the blissfully ignorant.  To thrive as a nation of “we the people” we MUST demand our citizens get more informed and have a realistic practical view of things so they are not so easily swept up in flashy slogans like “hope and change” then support something they don’t even know what it means, or go against something else they don’t even understand.

Check out the link provided by the comment above and you’ll see the new concepts in design greatly mitigate and eliminate even the limited risks that led to the problems in Japan.

When we first started having car accidents, should we have scraped the car?  Then go back to horse and buggy?   No, we made newer and better cars and are still doing so today.

In contrast after Three Mile Island, irrational fear and politics in the US put the US nuclear industry on ice for about 4 decades where we have not made progress for newer and better designs, and now we see that a 40 year old design in Japan does in fact have some issues that perhaps any new design will be built to eliminate, but if we stop that WON’T happen, and out of necessity we’ll still have old designs in operation for years to come – it is just stupid, but it reflects the collective intelligence of society, and that is ultimately what we need to correct.

DO YOUR HOMEWORK! Get educated.  It does not mean everyone needs to become a Nuclear Physicist, just not a blissful ignorant person driven to easy irrational fear and panic.


It is the spent fuel that seems to be the biggest problem, I think this was not realized at first when desperately trying to cool the recently shut down hot reactors, and the later hydrogen explosions likely caused the damage that later made the spent fuel pools a major problem.


Of note, this article includes a picture of the current state of the spent fuel pool in No.4 reactor, and a before picture, but the before picture caption is WRONG.  The pool in the picture is covering the open reactor during a refueling operation, the spent fuel pool it in the distance below the green gantry crane.

The reason this is important, it serves as another reminder that the media often makes technical errors, but unless you know enough to detect this, you might never notice.  DO YOUR HOMEWORK, there is no substitute for this.  Also the levels in this are now about 4 times what normally caused instant debilitation at 4000 msv (400 Rem/hour).  That is a local hazard for sure, and will make control of this situation really challenging, but one of the reasons it is so high on site is unlike Chernobyl, the contents of the core did not explode and were not instantly dispersed into a radioactive cloud.  The radiation in Japan is still largely contained on site with some airborne levels from steam and smoke leaving the site.

Biggest problem now appears to now be the SPENT fuel:


I started to realize this first when the fire started in No.4 which was shut down, this is something that will need a serious look and changes to any future design, or retrofits on old designs, and this AGAIN begs for the Yucca Mountain facility to be finished, but Obama basically killed it early in his term.  The reason there is so much spent fuel stored on site in our plants is there is no place to take it for long term storage, and we made a rather stupid policy move to not reprocess fuel as a way to lead and prevent others from reprocessing fuel.  This is because that is the same technology that makes weapons grade fissile Plutonium for bombs, and it did not work anyway; France, Japan and others reprocess fuel, and now we have Iran, North Korea, Pakistan and others doing it as well, so all we did was make our waste problem bigger and then failed to take action to even deal with that.

We pioneered the technology, then by stupid political decisions choked ourselves and let the French take the lead on advanced nuclear power generation and fuel processing! 

PERSPECTIVE – Ask any Anti-Nuclear type to explain the efforts they are taking to stop Iran and North Korea from nuclear expansion when they try to shut ours down.  You’ll see they have little concern about nuclear plants under the control of madmen and repressive regimes, but still aim to shut us down.  Chernobyl shoes us just how dangerous repressive regimes are with nuclear power, that plant was always an accident waiting to happen, and it was by OPERATOR action and very poor consideration for safety built in to a design that included no real containment at all.  Do you really think Iran and North Korea are going to have much concern about safety with their plants?  No way, but they have them, and we think we should shut ours down and cripple our economy and drastically lower our living standards?  Foolish!

Example of a Panic Story:

For those that want to panic and want to believe in conspiracy I’ll provide an opportunity for that as well. Having no agenda, I will also link here a panic example, this site clearly aims to scare you and get you to believe in a widespread cover-up.   Sadly when we do verify some government lies, it makes it easy to claim that even when we are not being lied to, and this is why it remains important to be on the side of TRUTH, even if it does not advance an agenda, because once the path of lies begins, it becomes more difficult to later be trusted on any topic.


DON’T PANIC, I lived through the Chernobyl cloud when it went through the UK, about 25 years ago, I’m still alive.  This is panic stuff to push an agenda, and sadly since there have been lies, and cover-ups it is all too easy to believe this stuff.  There are also naturally occurring radiation sources like Radon, and there are toxic chemicals that occur in nature, if one wants to do a study to prove health effects in any number of industrial areas and has a pre-conceived outcome, the can likely find a set of data to fit.

The TMI study focuses on Strontium-90, but it is not so clear about how this might compare to a similar study conducted elsewhere, since this isotope has been dispersed globally, and has about a 29 year half-life. (It is interesting that it is a low energy-beta emitter, this does make it difficult to detect since it is easily shielded even in air, but also low energy is low biological damage as well).

Here is what the EPA has on Strontium-90:


More (19Mar11):

As mentioned way back in the beginning of this post, the efforts to use this crisis to create panic, hysteria and to push an agenda is very clear, here is and excellent example:  (NY Daily News does a hit piece on a US Nuclear plant, using some very agenda oriented “experts” to back this effort)


And another brilliant post on the same blog:


More (21Mar11):

Many problems remain, but there is some progress.  This article indicates the Tsunami may have been 14 meters, and the plant was designed to withstand only 5.7 meters.  The magnitude of this disaster is profound.  Continue to pray for the people of Japan as they work to recover from the devastation.


This report indicates power is now back to all 6 reactors, but they are still working to get pumps on, but it is a positive sign in any case.


Some are no longer willing to trust government, but here I think NRC is being honest.  Knowing a bit about the nuclear power industry and the types of people that work in it, I think the NRC is being honest in saying that the US nuclear plants are safe. 


More (22Mar11):

 Perspective on Nuclear power, and though I’d tend to question the source, he does what appears to be a fair analysis here:


He concludes with this point and it is a good one:

“The American public will need to decide whether the risks of nuclear power — compared with those of other energy sources — are too high.”

That is EXACTLY why it is IMPORTANT to be informed and be able to understand the issues, it does come back to the public, if we are collectively stupid, bad things will happen, if we are collectively smart, good things will happen.  It starts at each and every one of us.

More (23 March 2011):

Germany overreacts and vows to get out of Nuclear, watch for a collapse of economic prosperity in Germany to follow (it already happened in Spain!):

Here is the quote that sums it up: “which experts say will likely lead to higher electricity prices.” And that means a LOWER standard of living!


(What is really sad is that eventually look for the French to be selling electric power to the Germans!  Yes, France has lots of nuclear power; it is perhaps the only thing I can think of where the French actually show some initiative!)


Nuclear work in Japan continues (many difficult tasks remain, it is not over):


More (27Mar11):

Struggles continue, but information is flowing, and they are working hard to control this, 3 workers had radiation burns to their feet, the efforts to control and clean up continue.


Now there is indication that a containment is breached, this puts this worse that Three Mile Island, but not as bad a Chernobyl.  It will take weeks, maybe months or years to get this into a stable condition.




More (28March2011):

No question this is worse than Three Mile Island, I’d call it 6 out of 7 on the international scale, but it remains less severe than Chernobyl.

The information is coming out, it appears there is transparency.  This is a big problem, but not reason to panic, and still not as bad as the Tsunami devastation. 


Take a look as this video to get perspective on how MASSIVE this Tsunami was:


More (29 March 2011):

Reactor vessel damage is in Japan is apparent now, this is without doubt worse than Three Mile Island, as mentioned before.

To make matters worse, now the UK signals the likely stall to new Nuclear Power plants, further crippling the economic recovery of the EU, meanwhile Iran, North Korea, China and Russia continue with Nuclear… This won’t end well for Western Civilization; the stupid WILL be punished…


Far reaching decisions are never well advised in the midst of a crisis, and without the proper perspective, but it seems we have far too many now predisposed to irrational, emotional decisions.

More (01 Apr 2011, not fooling either):

 “Jobs that Americans won’t do” is a total LIE!  Americans will even take great risk and go to Japan to help in a very dangerous mission: stabilize the damaged reactors. Note, these people are highly trained and amongst the highest paid for non-college graduates, and still they GO!


50 to 100 years to deal with this issue…


More (02Apr 11):

Cracked concrete… radiation leaks to sea… with the massive quake and hundreds of aftershocks, and the explosions, it would be amazing if this were the only cracked concrete.


Here is an excellent piece from Reason magazine, this one talks about risks in a rational way, and suggests that future designs may well not pose anywhere near the risk of the 40 year old designs.


MORE: (11 Apr 11):

Now raised to a seven, but I’d still call it a 6, however we still need perspective.  This article points out that a Coal fired plant releases about 100 times the radiation of a nuclear plant!


7 Responses to “Anti-Nuclear groups POUNCE on the tragedy in Japan as an opportunity to shut down any future Nuclear Power development, but is this attack really FAIR?”

  1. Dave Dahlke said

    The media has caused a fear of nuclear power. We don’t even have the option of buying nuked food because the general populace believes they’ll be inhaling radiation. Where is the demand to curtail natural gas since explosions from natural gas have killed more people and destroyed more structures then nuclear accidents have? This society lives in fear which is promoted by the media and the greenies.

    • mrfixit said

      Exactly, as soon as it was realized that the creation of fear could be used to control people and to push agendas, it became standard. How often do we hear about what foods are good, then later they are bad, then good again. This is about the control of human behavior, often manufactured fear, and it works well when many remain ignorant and too lazy to seek truth and full context on issues. The solution has to be to enlightened and educate more people to minimize the effectiveness of manufactured fear.

  2. Dave Dahlke said

    I agree with you Mike, but when we try and enlighten the people they look at us as if WE are the loonies. I know, we still have to try.

  3. Matthew said

    While I don’t necessarily dispute any of your comments (and my nuclear reactor work was last in 1981), unfortunately forget seeing any real numbers on exposure. The US likely to try same as Japan is doing (USA Today): “The Japanese government’s radiation report for the country’s 47 prefectures Wednesday had a notable omission — Fukushima, ground zero in Japan’s nuclear crisis. Measurements from Ibaraki, just south of Fukushima, were also blanked out.”

    • mrfixit said

      Yes, I saw this too, and it is of concern. But consider what if the levels are high and it created panic – then now calm people that are indoors and mostly protected then headed outdoors to get out of the area and get more exposure and even spread it. They’d clog the devastated roads, block relief efforts, and be exposed for possibly long periods in the traffic jams trying to get away, and all the while more at risk than they are indoors right now. That may help inform us why this could be the case. If they have snow and rain right now, and I think that is in the forecast, it could start to lower levels outdoors by dispersion, and stopping a panic now might be a better option. This is just a guess on my part, but I try to consider the really tough choices those on the ground must be faced with, and while no options are going to be perfect they have to pick those that will be least harmful. I don’t think they are intentionally keeping people in harm’s way, I think they are doing the best they can, I’m pretty sure the decision makers in this are really smart people, we’re not talking about some of our elected and appointed incompetent politicians, if we were I’d be inclined to have some serious doubt, like when HRC spouted about “really important coolant” in an early press release. I put up a prior post on that flap…

    • mrfixit said

      I added the link to the USA Today story you cited, and some context. The last link on my update includes and interview with a woman who survived the nuclear blast in WW2, it is very interesting to hear her perspective.

  4. Dave Dahlke said

    I believe the Japanese are handling the situation the right way. Don’t speak to our press. Our press has already bastarized (is this even a word) the story so why should they provide any additional information which they will twist and turn into even more sensationalized news. I believe the mainstream media speaks to the uneducated because we see and hear about them running for their iodine pills. Maybe they count their viewers by the number of iodine pills that are sold? Or the amount of vaccines sold for swine flu?

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