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Japan Science

Fukushima's Fallout Worse Than Thought 308

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the usda-recommended-daily-dose-of-cs-137 dept.
gbrumfiel writes "A new study posted for open peer-review suggests that the nuclear reactors at Fukushima Daiichi released far more radiation than the Japanese government initially estimated. The study [PDF] uses global radioisotope and meteorological data to calculate the size of the release from the plant. Nature News reports that, contrary to official claims, the model shows that fuel being stored in a pool at unit 4 released a significant amount of cesium-137, a long-lived contaminant that has spread across the countryside. It also says that some Xenon-133 may have been released early on in the accident, suggesting that the plant was already damaged before it was hit by a tsunami. Overall, it estimates that Fukushima released about twice as much cesium-137 as the government claims and half as much as Chernobyl."
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Fukushima's Fallout Worse Than Thought

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  • by tmosley (996283) on Wednesday October 26, 2011 @09:04AM (#37842938)
    *Implying that regulations prevented the disaster.

    We have to keep doing what we are doing, or EVERYONE WILL DIE!!!!@!@!11

    Truth is, if regulations had not been so severe, they would have been able to move that spent fuel to a safer location, or, God forbid, reuse it in a breeder reactor to generate energy while disposing of the long term radioactive waste. Instead, extremely heavy regulations made the situation WORSE because they forced the plant to store spent fuel in an insanely dangerous manner--they simply couldn't afford the cost of complying with disposal regulations.
  • by ArsonSmith (13997) on Wednesday October 26, 2011 @09:05AM (#37842962) Journal

    Exactly. Better to have a company lie to us than the government since nobody trusts companies, but too many people trust the government way to fully.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday October 26, 2011 @10:12AM (#37843644)
    As a Professional in Risk Analysis and Management of various tangible and intangible assets, the person or people controlling the purse strings never see the risk right in front of them. I fight on a daily basis to try to keep my clients informed of the clusterfuck hovering above them and it's hard work, if it wasn't for regulation I'd be out of a job because most companies wouldn't give a shit and not just because of trying to keep expenses low but because they're idiots. I spend so much time covering my ass and ensuring that everything I do or say is properly noted and recorded to ensure they don't blame me when the shit hits the fan that it makes up most of my overhead. The market will solve the problem by killing itself and anything around it in the process and it's not just because of greed, it's because people are idiots. The people in charge of these things in the corporate structure are usually just idiots and the people writing the regulation are usually just lazy or living in academic fantasy land or are in no way, shape or form divorced from conflicts of interest.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday October 26, 2011 @10:13AM (#37843656)

    Which government regulation did this company violate to cause this accident? None.

    If the government would have approved new plants this one could have been safely decommissioned and replaced by something much safer. So in this case it was actually government regulations which kept a horribly out of date reactor online well after its original EOL.

  • by tmosley (996283) on Wednesday October 26, 2011 @11:02AM (#37844342)
    Which is why the corporate form should be abolished, as it would be under a free market (the corporate veil and the inability to sue shareholders is a protection afforded to corporations by the government).
  • by rubycodez (864176) on Wednesday October 26, 2011 @11:08AM (#37844436)
    So what? They stay in the fuel.

    Very stupid to put a gold mine of energy into Yucca mountain, we've only extracted less than 15% of the energy from that wrongly called "spent fuel". We can get the rest of the energy and as a side effect transform the stuff into short lived isotopes.

    Yucca mountain is junk engineering, a bad application of science

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