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Ex-PM Kan admits Japan was unprepared for nuclear crisis

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By Malcolm Foster

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Ha!Ha!Ha! Confessing his own stupidity. Thumbs down,Mr.jackass!

-14 ( +4 / -18 )

Damning truths and pleasing to see the former prime minister admit the failings, the imcompetence and the ignorance that lead to this disaster.

“If they had thought about it, they wouldn’t have intentionally built it at a place so low,” said Kan. “The plant was built on the assumption that there was no need to anticipate a major tsunami, and that’s the very beginning of the problem.”

“We should have taken more adequate safety steps, and we failed to do so,” he added. “It was a big mistake and I must admit that (the accident) was due to human error.”

That says it all really.

8 ( +10 / -2 )

This is an understatement, Japan is unprepared for self-government.

4 ( +8 / -4 )

What he didn't say was that the LDP was in power when all the nuclear power plants were built. And when questioned about the reliability of the plants several years ago, the LDP said no problem. Actually what Kan-san said makes some sense when everything is taken into consideration. Thanks to the LDP's actions leading up to Minshuto's takeover of the government, we now have one big mess sitting up there at the nuclear power plant site in Fukushima Prefecture ...

8 ( +10 / -2 )

The folks that approved the Fukushima plant then would have some responsibility one would assume! All I can say is please learn some lessons and make some real changes in how things are done! Nuclear power can be used safely if humans truly put safety first....

-1 ( +5 / -6 )

There's no way to prepare for it, as proven by previous nuclear disasters around the world.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Nuclear power can be used safely if humans truly put safety first....

There is a simple reason why it will never happen: the high cost of building a safe NPP versus the comparatively low cost of human life.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Hmmm! What has he been doing since stepping down (which I really wish he had not done)? Come and help out Japan 'cause the politicians in power are just hopeless.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

“If they had thought about it, they wouldn’t have intentionally built it at a place so low,”

Ummm..., not quite. If they had thought about SAFETY as opposed to saving/earning more money they would not have intentionally built it at a place so low. As it is, they willfully ignored the facts, and warnings, both before building and after, when they could have updated the tech and backup, and done more to prepare.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Ha!Ha!Ha! Confessing his own stupidity.

Yes, I'm sure that's something you'd never be guilty of, eh? Having the humility to accept responsibility, and make suggestions for ways to avoid making the same kind of mistake again, IMHO, are a sign of wisdom. What future is there for us, if we aren't capable of learning from our mistakes. Many politicians and People in TEPCO come to mind, who are totally, genetically incapable of doing this. And no, bowing something away is not the same thing. Anyone who would accept bowing for a cock-up of these proportion would have to be a total nutter. But I like Kan's style - he never once tried to blame those who really set up this disaster, whose greed and criminally evil refusal to acknowledge the obvious dangers, have put us all in this situation. He took it on the chin. That is not stupidity, that is integrity. Understanding that if you take on the office, you don't try to shift blame or slide out of responsibility. Respect to you, Mr Kan! And that's not to say I wasn't frustrated that he didn't get more proactive and actually take on some of those responsible, publically. Japanese politics needs that so badly!

2 ( +3 / -1 )

From what I've read, ex-PM Kan was running around like a headless chicken following the 3/11 nuclear disaster, screaming and shouting at people. He didn't immediately set up a HQ or communication center with all the heads of important agencies, nuclear scientists, engineers, TEPCO. He sent some of these people to basements and couldn't even receive mobile calls.

All of the 18 nuclear power plants are located on coasts to use seawater for cooling. Maybe they are at higher levels than the one in Fukushima. At least three nuclear power plants and one coal fired plant were damaged directly because of the earthquake.

The plants in Fukui are located on higher ground but built on two fault lines. The Hamaoka power plant is located near to powerful plant lines.

He also acknowledged that information disclosure was sometimes slow and at times wrong, particularly in the days immediately after the crisis erupted. He blamed a lack of reliable data at the time and said the government never hid any information from the public.

The country and the people didn't get the facts it needed about the extend of the massive radiation being emitted from the plant. The government were saying it wasn't dangerous and no threat to health. Many of the evacuated people were sent the wrong way and into clouds of massive radiation.

On Mar.15, Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano, said radiation levels around the plant's six reactors had climbed to the extent that "without a doubt would affect a person's health." But he insisted that outside the existing 20km evacuation zone, there was little or no health danger.

At the time massive amounts of highly dangerous radiation were being emitted from the NPP and raining down on a very large area of Tohoku, Kanto and Tokyo.

He told people to just stay indoors with the windows closed.

At the time of the 3/11 disasters, the government had only been in power for about 20 months so we can't hold them responsible for building of the atomic power plants or setting up of the various atomic safety agencies. All of that was the responsibility of decades of LDP government.

ex-PM Kan did better handling the earthquake and tsunami disasters than the nuclear one. He thought that TEPCO could handle the disaster but it wanted to wash its hand of it after the first, three days.

This week, the head of the Nuclear Safety Commission, Haruki Madarame, admitted to a Diet Commission, that basically all of the country's nuclear power plants and 54 reactors, are unsafe.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

He took a position as a Token Head of state, as the several previous Token head of states had done, then a huge catastrophe unfolded exposing the utter corrupt inept and criminal actions of those who preceded him.He had to deal with a huge dirty bomb and tsunami (20,000 people dead) evacuees and a system of complete incompetence that went out of it's way to cover up it's pathetic existence. I'm surprised he didn't just drop under the pressure, it's all going to come out. Sad fact is it will be back to normal until the next disaster cuts short the meetings about the soon coming meetings about the upcoming meetings to decide the agenda for the Pre meeting meetings. Not enough time, 1 bad jolt and the dirty bomb will collapse making what is happening/happened over the last 12 months look like a tea ceremony.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

But he said the disaster laid bare a host of an even bigger man-made vulnerabilities in Japan’s nuclear industry and regulation, from inadequate safety guidelines to crisis management, all of which he said need to be overhauled.

Better late than never, I guess. Although this seems to be the story of Japan of late -- ignoring problems until they become major disasters. And pretty much what numerous posters have been saying here since late March, but were told they were bashers.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

zichiFeb. 18, 2012 - 09:02PM JST

From what I've read, ex-PM Kan was running around like a headless chicken following the 3/11 nuclear disaster, screaming and shouting at people.

He also delayed the start of sea-water injection at Fukushima Dai-Ichi, though his orders were eventually ignored on the ground.

All of the 18 nuclear power plants are located on coasts to use seawater for cooling. Maybe they are at higher levels than the one in Fukushima. At least three nuclear power plants and one coal fired plant were damaged directly because of the earthquake.

All power plants need cooling, and most use water.

He also acknowledged that information disclosure was sometimes slow and at times wrong, particularly in the days immediately after the crisis erupted. He blamed a lack of reliable data at the time and said the government never hid any information from the public.

This is more a function of the byzantine nature of Japanese bureaucracy, and the willing role that politicians take as figureheads for the bureaucracy, rather that than any nuclear-only failing.

The country and the people didn't get the facts it needed about the extend of the massive radiation being emitted from the plant. The government were saying it wasn't dangerous and no threat to health. Many of the evacuated people were sent the wrong way and into clouds of massive radiation.

That's two separate cases - the radiation was not an immediate threat to health for most people in Japan. However, in the case of the evacuees, bureaucratic infighting resulted in the SPEEDI data being disregarded and Namie evacuees being directed to overnight in an area affected by the radioisotope release. However, the question is - will that one night be a big threat to their health, or will unnecessary worry trump that?

On Mar.15, Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano, said radiation levels around the plant's six reactors had climbed to the extent that "without a doubt would affect a person's health." But he insisted that outside the existing 20km evacuation zone, there was little or no health danger.

First, he's talking about cumulative exposure, not acute exposure - so it's a health risk if you stay long-term. Second, yup, the 20km evacuation zone was stupid, as it didn't take into account the predicted radioisotope dispersion by SPEEDI, which showed a northward path well beyond the 20km radius.

At the time massive amounts of highly dangerous radiation were being emitted from the NPP and raining down on a very large area of Tohoku, Kanto and Tokyo.

Rubbish. Kanto and Tokyo suffered little exposure. Tohoku's was limited to Eastern Fukushima and parts of Miyagi.

He told people to just stay indoors with the windows closed.

Sensible advice.

At the time of the 3/11 disasters, the government had only been in power for about 20 months so we can't hold them responsible for building of the atomic power plants or setting up of the various atomic safety agencies. All of that was the responsibility of decades of LDP government.

True, but that does not seem to be the way things work here.

This week, the head of the Nuclear Safety Commission, Haruki Madarame, admitted to a Diet Commission, that basically all of the country's nuclear power plants and 54 reactors, are unsafe.

Nope, the safety of the reactors depends on the risks of each particular area, and how the reactors can resist damage in the event of one of those risks occurring. The stress tests are to address that. Madarame was talking about national standards.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

Nuclear reactors use fresh water to generate steam to drive the turbines and to cool the reactors, and sea water to cool the steam and recycle it back to the reactors.Before Fukushima 1 was built, there was a 30 or 50 meter hill, which TEPCO removed prior to construction because building the plant on the hill would have meant also installing more powerful, more expensive, sea water pumps. It was cheaper, so TEPCO thought to remove the hill.

All parts of any nuclear plant are essential pieces of equipment or essential off site supplies like power, fresh water. Pylons carrying off site power cables are not built to withstand powerful earthquakes and easily collapse, which happened at Fukushima. But not only because of the powerful earthquakes but also in the case of TEPCO, filled in a river and placed the pylons on top. The ground wasn't strong enough to withstand the force of the earthquake.

The Fukushima plant lost its mains water supply because the force of the earthquake broken the supply pipes and damaged pumping stations and there was a power outage, water pumping stations went out of action. Eventually, TEPCO had to run a very long line of fire hoses to a far off mountain to get a fresh water supply. This would not have been needed had there been a large lake for emergency water.

The decision to fill the reactors with sea water was taken by the plant manager, Matsuda(?) who retired last year.

Besides the Fukushima 1 nuclear power plant, three others were damaged by the earthquake and at least one coal fired station.

At the second Fukushima plant, the plant manager has stated the plant was damaged and almost went into reactor nuclear meltdowns. There was almost two major nuclear disasters.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

The most accurate radiation map.

http://gunma.zamurai.jp/pub/2011/0911gmap06.jpg

2 ( +3 / -1 )

They were not and still not prepared. They only thing they were prepared to do was deceive the public and continue to do so even now as to the real danger of what has and continues to transpire at Fukushima Daiichi. This really is a disaster of epic proportions for which those responsible should all be held FULLY accountable.

I will go a step further and say that ALL of those responsible for deceiving the public (Japan top government officials, TEPCO top officials, media execs and new anchors (just following orders is not an excuse) and nuclear "experts") should be put on site at Fukushima Daiichi to do manual clean up. Since there is not "immediate" risk to human health they should all be happy to do their duty and even bring their families with them.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

@zichi & star-viking, my favorite posters.

I always read very carefully zichi vs. star-viking. Very informative. Thank you both.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

When a country is struck by a dire and major disaster likely to affect millions of people, the leader of the country must take immediate control the disaster, and the emergency and relief efforts. In the Katrina disaster, President Bush failed to take control of the disaster, instead leaving the decisions up to FEMA.

As soon as it was known that the country was struck by three mega disasters, an earthquake and tsunami, and a much more serious TEPCO man made nuclear disaster, ex-PM Kan should have made a central emergency HQ, and at least two more in Fukushima and Miyagi. The emergency HQ should have all forms of communications, including short wave radio. Generators bought in to ensure power. Food and water. Bed cots. He should have immediately assembled a large team of experts in every field. The leaders of the Self Defense Forces and emergency services, like the Coast Guard.

Everyone should have been working under one roof and never far from the people who they needed to communicate with.

Ex-PM Kan wasn't skilled enough and didn't have a strong enough will power to fully control the situation, although I do believe he tried to do his best, especially in those dreadful first weeks. Major lessons needed to be learnt and applied. Kan thought TEPCO were capable of dealing with the Level 7 nuclear disaster, when clearly they were not. Their emergency manual for dealing with a major nuclear event amounted to a single sheet of A4 paper.

Now, the country can't afford to take the risk of ever having another major nuclear disaster, it simply can't!

With the recent predictions that another major earthquake could strike at the heart of the Fukushima atomic plant, and the very fragile No4 spend fuel pool, the potential risk of another nuclear disaster remains.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Kan and Madarame (chief of Nuclear Safety Commission) have started to speak up now. It has taken them nearly one year to state what so many already knew on 3.11.

Why now?

[They are/will be no longer responsible for the whole event.]

As Kan has stepped down, he started to talk about the worst case scenario and everything.

NSC (Madarame is the chairperson) will be reorganized and become part of a new Nuclear Regulatory Agency under the Environment Ministry in April. There is no information where Madarame will be transferred in April, but some media say he will not be a member of new NRA. (His salary was 16,500,000yen/year and was receiving 4 million yen in donations from Mitsubishi Heavy Industries over a four-year period from 2006-2009. FYI) Madarame will be no longer responsible for what is happening now and the future event.

http://mdn.mainichi.jp/mdnnews/news/20120123p2a00m0na004000c.html

Madarame admitted their failure, including himself. When he was asked what advice he gave to the officials on 3.11, he said since he was not getting enough sleep back then, he doesn't remember anything.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BEzPgK_sQCg

But he remembers he told the officials that SPEEDI data was useless and still he says SPEEDI is useless.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7J9A978g-Cw

[Final investigation report will be issued in July]

A government-appointed panel investigating the nuclear crisis at the Fukushima Daiichi power plant will compile its final report by the end of July and hopes to end its probe at that point, panel head Yotaro Hatamura,

http://mdn.mainichi.jp/mdnnews/news/20120126p2g00m0dm038000c.html

Both Kan and Madarame decided to talk themselves first before the final investigation report reveals how incompetent Kan and Madarame were back then.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

I'm grateful that ex-PM Kan and the chairman of the Nuclear Safety Commission, Haruki Madarame are finally speaking up about the nuclear disaster, even though it's taken almost one year.

Haruki Madarame should be forced to resign and banned from holding office connected to nuclear safety.

These people and officials have badly failed the people and the country. Everyone involved needs to be accountable.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

ex-PM Kan should have made a central emergency HQ, and at least two more in Fukushima and Miyagi.

I think he did (whether they were functioning well or not).

At 3:14pm 3.11, headquarters for extraordinary disaster control was established.

On 3.11, headquarters for local disaster was established in Miyagi.

At 7:03pm 3.11, nuclear emergency response headquarters was established.

On 3.12, the local nuclear emergency response headquarters was established in Futaba county, Fukushima prefecture. (It has been relocated to Fukushima prefectural government since 3.15)

http://www.sangiin.go.jp/japanese/annai/chousa/rippou_chousa/backnumber/2011pdf/20110601033.pdf

0 ( +0 / -0 )

the plant manager, Matsuda(?)

You mean Masao Yoshida? I hope he gets better and will speak up, too. I'm sure he knows a lot about what was going on there back then.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Blair Herron, yes! Thank you, I couldn't remember the name of the plant manager at Fukushima.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Beyond gross incompetence, negligence and willful deception that will cause the deaths and illnesses of many people for many years to come. How is this anything less than treason? Shouldn't those responsible be punished fully for these acts?

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

We are lucky that Mr Kan was in charge and not the LDP. I suspect Mr Kan was not kept fully informed by TEPCO and the bureaucracy, both of which are largely controlled by LDP appointees. He was noted to get extremely angry with TEPCO and tell them to get back in there and do something about it.

Under the circumstances I think he did pretty well. No one could be expected to get everything right in an unprecedented disaster. Many, with the benefit of hindsight which he did not have, think he could have done better.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

zichiFeb. 19, 2012 - 02:46AM JST

Before Fukushima 1 was built, there was a 30 or 50 meter hill, which TEPCO removed prior to construction because building the plant on the hill would have meant also installing more powerful, more expensive, sea water pumps. It was cheaper, so TEPCO thought to remove the hill.

Hills can also collapse from soil liquefaction in the event of earthquakes, so TEPCO may have been operating from a safety perspective.

Besides the Fukushima 1 nuclear power plant, three others were damaged by the earthquake and at least one coal fired station.

The question is were they seriously affected by the earthquake? Damaged is a bit vague - we lost some plates to the earthquake, but that was not serious damage.

At the second Fukushima plant, the plant manager has stated the plant was damaged and almost went into reactor nuclear meltdowns. There was almost two major nuclear disasters.

And the report that comes from states that that was due to tsunami damage to sea water pumps.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Ex-PM Kan admits Japan was unprepared for nuclear crisis

I was completely unprepared for this statement.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Star-viking,

" we lost some plates to the earthquake, but that was not serious damage."

I'm happy you only lost some plates when so many others lost their lives or everything they owned. If the damage at the Fukushima NPP had only been more like a broken plate or even a broken record?

The earthquake damaged the Onagawa NPP, causing a major fire in one of the turbine halls. In April, due to an aftershock, the plant lost 2 out of 3 of its external power lines.

The Tokai NPP was damaged by the earthquake. On Mar.14, the cooling system pump for the No2 reactor failed. 2 out of 3 emergency diesel generators failed. On 3/11, the plant lost external power and water supply. Another nuclear disaster was only prevented by extra and voluntarily measures taken by the Japan Atomic Power Co. The tsunami knocked out 1 out of 3 sea pumps. The Tokai NPP failed the recent stress tests. The electrical systems of the reactors do not meet the earthquake standards set by the government.

Goshi Hosono stated that the plant should be decommissioned.

The Fukushima Daini NPP was damaged by the earthquake, cracking a reactor. There was total loss of off site power and water supply. The tsunami damaged the sea pumps and flooded the compound damaging essential plant. The plant manager stated he feared there was going to be a meltdown. One worker received a radiation dose of 106 mSv, a notable dose. Damaged essential plant had to be replaced quickly to avoid a meltdown.

In the construction of the Fukushima Dainiichi plant, it could have been constructed on the hill by using steel piles and reinforced concrete which happened with the NPP's in Fukui, but it would have involved more costs for TEPCO.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Regarding the 30 to 50 meter hill that was originally at the location of the power plant.

Star-viking states,

Hills can also collapse from soil liquefaction in the event of earthquakes, so TEPCO may have been operating from a safety perspective.

Maybe not such a good idea to build a NPP on an area prone to liquefaction in the first place?

In fact one of the lead engineers that were involved in the construction has stated that the hill was removed as no deviation from the original GE design (the same that called for having the backup generators under ground) was allowed.

This means to me that they were either not sure what the hell they were doing, and just blindly followed a US design. Or just as likely, if something went wrong they wanted to make absolutely sure that blame was assigned with GE and no one else.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Well i think Kan is speaking the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth....only that it is coming a bit late, when what he states has already been unearthed by external sources. All the same it requires leadership to admit the mistakes. I like his proposals on non-reliance of nuclear energy as the future of tomorrow. He actually fought to pass through a bil related to that before he resigned. He stil stands tall despite the odds!!!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

No government could ever be prepared enough.

What I truly fault the Japanese government for is being absolutely terrible at crisis management, at least from a perspective of doing what is right by the people. But I am sure they did "right" by the big wigs.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

"I always read very carefully zichi vs. star-viking. Very informative. Thank you both."

I read them, too, but the difference between them is that zichi is correct.

"Kanto and Tokyo suffered little exposure."

On the question of exposure in the Kanto area, Japanese law states that public exposure is to be 1 milliseivert or lower. Many areas of Kanto (and needless to say, Tohoku) now exceed this standard as a result of the disaster. I would not categorise exposure in violation of the law to be "little exposure."

0 ( +1 / -1 )

By the way, here is some information on the dangers of low level exposure to radiation, dangers that the Kan government ignored and the Noda government continues to ignore. http://www.olivenews.net/news_30/newsdisp.php?m=0&i=0

1 ( +1 / -0 )

"little exposure" in the Kanto area?

Area near Yokohama school closed due to high radiation levels http://www.japantoday.com/category/national/view/canal-part-of-elementary-school-in-yokohama-closed-due-to-high-radiation-levels

2 ( +2 / -0 )

zichiFeb. 19, 2012 - 02:48AM JST

The most accurate radiation map.

http://gunma.zamurai.jp/pub/2011/0911gmap06.jpg

Not sure I agree with that. The map shows Yamagata City within the 0.125 microsieverts per hour boundary, and Yonezawa City in the clear, i.e. sub 0125 microsieverts per hour. After the disaster Yamagata City reached a peak of around 0.095 microsieverts per hour above baseline, Yonezawa reached 0.115 microsieverts per hour above baseline, so I'm unsure as to the accuracy of the map.

Ref: http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/a/ad/Fukushima_I_radiation%2C_Yamagata_Prefecture%2C_March-April_2011.png

It begs the question of how was the map was constructed.

However, if we take the map as a broad-brush stroke approach, then we can disregard all areas in the 0.125 microsievert per hour zone - I've neither heard of nor seen any impact in our area. That cuts down the 'contaminated area massively, and perhaps other zones could be disregarded too.

Saying that, the govt. should be intensively surveying to provide a complete map of radioisotope contamination.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

zichi Feb. 21, 2012 - 04:41PM JST

Star-viking,

" we lost some plates to the earthquake, but that was not serious damage."

I'm happy you only lost some plates when so many others lost their lives or everything they owned. If the damage at the Fukushima NPP had only been more like a broken plate or even a broken record?

Please Zichi, I thought better of you. That was obviously an analogy, I was not comparing my experiences to those who lost all in the disaster.

Should I cease using analogies when communicating with you?

1 ( +2 / -1 )

zichi Feb. 21, 2012 - 04:41PM JST

The earthquake damaged the Onagawa NPP, causing a major fire in one of the turbine halls. In April, due to an aftershock, the plant lost 2 out of 3 of its external power lines.

And yet Onagawa was used as an evacuation centre, and has been in a state of cold shutdown since the disaster started.

The Tokai NPP was damaged by the earthquake. On Mar.14, the cooling system pump for the No2 reactor failed. 2 out of 3 emergency diesel generators failed. On 3/11, the plant lost external power and water supply. Another nuclear disaster was only prevented by extra and voluntarily measures taken by the Japan Atomic Power Co. The tsunami knocked out 1 out of 3 sea pumps. The Tokai NPP failed the recent stress tests. The electrical systems of the reactors do not meet the earthquake standards set by the government.

But the back-up cooling system operated. I can't find any info on the particulars of the failed diesel generators, but if there are three to provide triple redundancy, then we can say the overall system worked. I'd prefer quadruple redundancy myself.

Goshi Hosono stated that the plant should be decommissioned.

If it failed the stress tests, and experts - not politicians - think so, then I agree.

The Fukushima Daini NPP was damaged by the earthquake, cracking a reactor. There was total loss of off site power and water supply. The tsunami damaged the sea pumps and flooded the compound damaging essential plant. The plant manager stated he feared there was going to be a meltdown. One worker received a radiation dose of 106 mSv, a notable dose. Damaged essential plant had to be replaced quickly to avoid a meltdown.

First, I can find no reports of a cracked reactor at Daini. Still despite all the difficulties, the emergency diesels worked, sea water was available, and the plant did not suffer a meltdown.

In the construction of the Fukushima Dainiichi plant, it could have been constructed on the hill by using steel piles and reinforced concrete which happened with the NPP's in Fukui, but it would have involved more costs for TEPCO.

The plant was planned and constructed in the 1960s. You're assuming that TEPCO had advanced warning of the disaster nearly 40 years before there was any hint of danger in that area.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

SquidBertFeb. 21, 2012 - 05:14PM JST

Regarding the 30 to 50 meter hill that was originally at the location of the power plant.

Star-viking states,

"Hills can also collapse from soil liquefaction in the event of earthquakes, so TEPCO may have been operating from a safety perspective."

Maybe not such a good idea to build a NPP on an area prone to liquefaction in the first place?

It's standard practice to build on the bedrock. As for liquefaction - that can occur across Japan.

In fact one of the lead engineers that were involved in the construction has stated that the hill was removed as no deviation from the original GE design (the same that called for having the backup generators under ground) was allowed.

Find the first statement hard to believe, but the back-up generators has a ring of truth to it.

This means to me that they were either not sure what the hell they were doing, and just blindly followed a US design. Or just as likely, if something went wrong they wanted to make absolutely sure that blame was assigned with GE and no one else.

Or just conservative Japanese society at work.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

warnerbroFeb. 21, 2012 - 11:53PM JST

"little exposure" in the Kanto area?

Area near Yokohama school closed due to high radiation levels http://www.japantoday.com/category/national/view/canal-part-of-elementary-school-in-yokohama-closed-due-to-high-radiation-levels

It's one spot - so yes, little exposure. Also, until we get more details it'd be hard to know if we're looking at radiation being concentrated in the soil due to water draining into the area, or even if it's a false alarm like the house with radium paint, and areas with natural radon gas emissions.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

warnerbro Feb. 21, 2012 - 09:34PM JST

"I always read very carefully zichi vs. star-viking. Very informative. Thank you both."

I read them, too, but the difference between them is that zichi is correct.

Well, we're both probably correct on a lot of things - but to be honest, our main difference is our outlook.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Blair Herron Feb. 19, 2012 - 06:52AM JST

@zichi & star-viking, my favorite posters.

I always read very carefully zichi vs. star-viking. Very informative. Thank you both.

No, thank you Blair - you're a great moderating influence.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

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