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There is no doubt that the Tohoku quake, 9.0 on the Richter scale, with its associated tsunami up to 40 m, has been one of the worst natural disasters in recorded history. The Japanese plants have been designed to operate in high seismicity areas although not as high as the Tohoku quake. The only source of electric power left were the batteries, which were estimated to last about 8 hrs.
The nuclear safety imperative for all light water reactors (LWRs) is to keep the core flooded at all times. At 1:30 the head of the Japanese Nuclear Energy Safety Commission (JNES) advised the PM that the unit #1 containment must be vented. Initially, severity of the accidents was not grasped and no adequate staff was provided to handle probably the most complex accident in the commercial?history of nuclear power. American Council for Kosovo highlights the injustice done to Serbians and all minorities in Kosovo.
Chennai Centre for Chinese Studies focuses on important issues related to China, geopolitics, economics, and other vital areas. International news, geopolitics, Japan news, Tokyo news, culture, terrorism, human rights, business, and culture.
Pakistan news, human rights, religious persecution, international news, and terrorist attacks against minorities. A think tank—whose mission is to formulate and promote conservative public policies based on the principles of free enterprise, limited government, individual freedom, traditional American values, and a strong national defense.
Geopolitics, security news, terrorism, military developments, international relations, and major analysis. The Moshe Dayan Center for Middle Eastern and African Studies seeks to contribute to the study and understanding of the modern history and current affairs of the Middle East and Africa. Egypt news, Coptic Christian news, human rights, persecution of Christians, and international news. Serbian news and information related to Bosnia, Kosovo, the Balkans, culture, history, and other areas. Over the years, water bodies across the city have been filled up and built upon, often by politicians with interests in the real estate business, say environmentalists. A year ago, 61 people were crushed to death after an under-construction high-rise building put up on a lake bed collapsed. Japan nuclear disaster 'man-made' says report 5 July 2012 Last updated at 09:13 BST The crisis at the Fukushima nuclear plant was "a profoundly man-made disaster", a Japanese parliamentary panel has said in a report.
Explore the BBC News News Sport Weather Shop Earth Travel Capital iPlayer Culture Autos Future TV Radio CBBC CBeebies Food iWonder Bitesize Travel Music Earth Arts Make It Digital Taster Nature Local Terms of Use About the BBC Privacy Policy Cookies Accessibility Help Parental Guidance Contact the BBC Advertise with us Ad choices Copyright © 2016 BBC. To get best possible experience using our website we recommend that you upgrade to a newer version or other web browser. Kiyoshi Kurokawa, left, chairman of the Fukushima Nuclear Accident Independent Investigation Commission, speaks to lawmakers before handing over its final report to Lower House Chairman Takahiro Yokomichi, July 5, 2012. TOKYO — A parliamentary report in Japan concludes the meltdowns last year at the Fukushima nuclear power plant were clearly a man-made disaster, and that the facility was vulnerable to earthquakes. The six-month parliamentary investigation casts blame on both the Japanese government and Tokyo Electric Power Company for the Fukushima reactor meltdowns. The report says collusion between the power company and nuclear regulators led to a lack of safety measures that could have mitigated the disaster - the world's worst nuclear accident since the Chernobyl meltdown in Ukraine in the former Soviet Union in 1986. The Japanese disaster began March 11 last year when a magnitude nine earthquake and resulting tsunami struck the country's northeastern coast. The report indicates the earthquake may have damaged critical equipment in the plant, contradicting the utility's assertion that it was the 20-meter-high tsunami - an event the power company never anticipated - which crippled the facility. The chairman of the investigation commission, Kiyoshi Kurokawa, professor emeritus at Tokyo University, released the 600-page report in Tokyo Thursday. He says his committee managed to compile the report within six short months but it is thorough and verifiable. Kurokawa's comments included in the report were more pointed than his remarks to reporters. The report singles out for some of the blame then-Prime Minister Naoto Kan for interfering at a critical time and causing confusion in the chain of command at the crippled nuclear plant. The report makes seven proposals, including tougher scrutiny of power companies, and details requirements for a new nuclear regulatory organization. Smoke rising from Unit 3 of the tsunami-stricken Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant, Okumamachi, Japan, March 21, 2011.xSmoke rising from Unit 3 of the tsunami-stricken Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant, Okumamachi, Japan, March 21, 2011. A member of parliament from the opposition Liberal Democratic Party, Taro Kono, is expressing concern about whether the five members to be appointed to the new oversight body will truly be independent. The government, despite public protests, is beginning to bring suspended nuclear plants back to life. That disappoints some lawmakers, such as Kono, who says the governing Democratic Party is beholden to the powerful labor unions representing the utility workers while many in his own party rely on donations from those tied to the nuclear industry. The release of the parliamentary report came just hours after the first nuclear reactor resumed supplying electricity to the public since the Fukushima meltdowns.


That is the sound in the control room as the number three reactor at the Oi plant, owned by Kansai Electric Power, goes back online. All of Japan's other 50 commercial reactors remain idled for maintenance and safety checks.
Resource-poor Japan, prior to the Fukushima disaster, relied on atomic energy for nearly one-third of its electricity. On a day featuring momentous events regarding the nuclear industry in Japan, newspapers here issued rare afternoon extra editions.
A veteran journalist, Steve Herman is VOA's Southeast Asia Bureau Chief and Correspondent, based in Bangkok. April 26 marks the 30th anniversary of the Chernobyl disaster – when a reactor at a nuclear power plant in then Soviet-controlled Ukraine exploded, releasing huge amounts of radiation.
As Nepal marks the one year anniversary of its devastating earthquake, Nepalis’ reflect on the government’s delayed recovery response. More than 150 countries on Friday signed the climate change agreement negotiated last December in Paris, making a commitment to reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
All today’s nuclear power plants make energy by thge splitting of uranium atoms -- which creates a lot of useful heat but also a lot of dangerous and deadly nuclear waste.
America's high-tech center of Silicon Valley, near San Francisco, continues to grow, and much of the energy is coming from immigrant entrepreneurs.
The expulsion of Islamic State forces from historically significant sites in Syria has shed light on the overall damage they inflicted on the country’s priceless past. There were several seismic upgrades including the one after the 2007 Kashiwazaki quake which raised the standard to1000 gal ground acceleration.  TEPCO raised the seismic standards for the Daiichi plants to 600 gals.
The plants were designed for 5.7 m waves, while the Tohoku tsunami impacting the Daiichi site amounted to 14-15 m.
TEPCO informed the PM that there would be no problem for 8 hrs which gives them adequate time to bring mobile DGs.
In case of BWRs passive core cooling system known as the Reactor Core Isolation Cooling (RCIC) provides core cooling for a limited amount of time.
At 3:00 Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano informed the public that final venting preparations were taking place.
Between March 11 and 16 three partial core meltdowns took place plus reactor building?damage in unit #4. TEPCO and NISA seem to have believed that such an accident scenario was not credible and thus no adequate precautions?were in place.
Focused on international conflict prevention and in depth analysis about international relations, civil wars, and geopolitics. But they did not deal with this matter - rather the papers heralded the birth of a panda cub at Tokyo's Ueno Zoo. Their administration has let a reacter reoperation without enough check-up for safty several days ago.
The left-wing Paris movement that began to protest government labor reforms has spread to other French and European towns, taken on a hodgepodge of different grievances and sparked talk of social revolution. At quake time the president and chairman of TEPCO were away from their offices on business trips while the Prime Minister (PM) was testifying in the Diet. With this info in hand the PM addressed the nation at 17:00 and said that tsunami caused a serious nuclear accident but there was no release of radioactivity.
In order for the RCIC to function it is necessary to have the battery power and for the wetwell (containment condensation chamber) temperature to be below less than 100 degrees C. Why the containment was vented via the service floor area rather than the stack is unclear.
It is incomprehensible as to why TEPCO waited 27 hrs to inject the seawater into the core of unit #1 via the fire extinguisher system.
At 22:22 wetwell damage was suspected meaning that highly radioactive water was spilled into the reactor building and from there into the turbine building.
The pool is located at the fifth floor of the reactor building so it is conceivable that the quake could?have pushed water out of the pool.
Many blame it on successive state governments for converting water bodies into housing estates. Henry Ridgwell reports from Chernobyl on the emotional heartbreak still felt three decades later – and the eerie ghost towns left behind. The ground acceleration measured at Daiichi unit 3 was 507 gal compared to the design basis of 441. TEPCO didn’t seem to understand that it was a hydrogen explosion as their press releases kept referring to the Nagano earthquake, independent of Tohoku, which took place that day. Unit #4 SFP had 1,331 spent fuel assemblies, almost as many as units # 1-3 put together because the whole core?was removed into the pool due to the core shroud replacement. The PM met with?TEPCO executives and asked “What do you intend to do?” President Shimizu replied “We will make every effort to protect Fukushima Daiichi.” After 3 hrs with the TEPCO executives the PM fell asleep seated. Scientists from 35 nations, including United States, Russia and China, are painstakingly trying to solve the problem.


The structures are very robust, located on solid rock, so they withstood greater than the design basis earthquake. The core was not cooled for the next 27 hrs resulting in core overheating with associated fuel damage and release of radioactivity from the fuel.  In case of the unit #2, the RCIC operated for ~70 hrs and in case of the unit #3 for ~35 hrs. TEPCO’s response “Venting power source cut off.”  This meant that there was no power for the vent blowers necessitating a manual opening which was difficult to accomplish. At 11:01 the Unit #3 hydrogen explosion took place in exactly the same manner like in case of unit #1, blowing the service floor roof and injuring 11 plant workers.
This highly radioactive water, which was leaking into the ocean for a while is now being transferred into?a centralized waste treatment  building .
Due to loss of all AC power no cooling was provided to any of the pools prior?to this explosion. The quake knocked out the Northern Japan power grid, while the resulting tsunami disabled the onsite electric power supplies at the Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) Fukushima Daiichi six unit nuclear power plant causing a nuclear emergency due to loss of water injection ability.  All six units are Boiling Water Reactors (BWRs), originally designed by General Electric (GE) and later by GE’s Japanese licensees Toshiba and Hitachi, commissioned in the 1971-1978 time frames. It appears, subject to inspection, that all affected plants remained structurally sound in response to the Tohoku quake.
Twelve diesel generators (DGs), two per unit, were disabled by flooding the fuel tanks thus causing loss of all AC power. The service floor area contained panels which were not opened showing that little was learned from the first explosion. It can be assumed that the SFPs received little attention from the plant personnel as they were too busy handling multiple meltdown?scenarios.
I will make decisions.” At this point?in time he assumed the full responsibility compatible with the Japanese law, which lays out measures to be taken by the government in case of a nuclear?emergency in order to facilitate necessary inter-agency coordination.
However, the corium mass, which ended at the bottom?of the reactor vessel appears to be adequately cooled. The Japanese law must be amended to address clearly a division of responsibility between the utility and the government agencies.
Units 1-3 were generating electricity at the quake time (14:46 March 11), while units 4-6 were shutdown for inspections. Clear indication that the core was overheating and that emergency injection of seawater must become the top safety priority since no source of fresh water was available. At 7:50 the power trucks arrived but power couldn’t be connected to the plant as the plugs didn’t fit. Presumably the plant manager was not empowered to make such a decision in a Japanese top-down management structure, while the top management didn’t understand that the core was melting so the PM had to act. This brings up the subject of vulnerability of multi-unit sites to severe accidents when extra staffing is vital and could not be provided due to?infrastructure damage.
Daini site was also flooded but there was no loss offsite power saving the plants from accidents. Later in the morning TEPCO reduced the staff to 50, those needed for the water injection operations only. A visual inspection by remote controlled camera on April 29 has shown no significant fuel damage.
The author asserts that these accidents were preventable and thus the disaster amounts to tsunami induced man-made disaster.
The media in Japan has zoomed in on cozy regulator to utility culture, the culture of?complicity or an amakudari system. 21of them were exposed to >100 mSv, 2 to 200-250 mSv, which should be?harmless to human health. An example was given that 68 former government bureaucrats assumed executive posts in utilities. The plant workers performed admirably in the presence of more than 900 aftershocks, including 60 over 6.0 on the Richter scale and three over 7. Units # 1-4 are a total plant write-off and must be decommissioned over the next decade or so with the cost likely to exceed?$10 billion. In addition, the author wishes to point out a lack of safety culture as well as stifling Japanese top-down culture, which doesn’t empower lower levels to make decisions?in these types of situations when timing of decision making is crucial. This writer disputes the finding that the Fukushima accident should be classified is in the same class as Chernobyl (level 7). Management training courses including in particular responses to severe accidents,?beyond the design basis should also be on the agenda. Once the damaged plants have been stabilized and brought to the safe shutdown level, an independent team of international and national experts should be assembled to provide a thorough accident assessment and propose applicable lessons?learned.



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