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Given the prevailing wind and weather patterns for Japan this graph would likely be shifted significantly north and east in its cumulative contamination weighting, with much of the contamination falling on the ocean.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Fri Apr 1st, 2011 at 11:10:58 AM EST
[ Parent ]
But that will change if the plant is still radioactive by the summer.

Other difference between Ukraine/Belarus and the Honshu island is the relief. Radiation will be focused in valleys around Fukushima, and the Japan Sea side would be less contaminated. You would also want to buy fish only on that side.

by das monde on Fri Apr 1st, 2011 at 11:16:51 AM EST
[ Parent ]
More precisely, it will depend on whether the plant is still emitting radioactive particles by summer. It will certainly be radioactive for years.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Fri Apr 1st, 2011 at 12:48:31 PM EST
[ Parent ]
A few hundred tons of boron-impregnated concrete will solve the problem, maybe...
by asdf on Sat Apr 2nd, 2011 at 12:05:55 AM EST
[ Parent ]
When the Fukushima Meltdown Hits Groundwater | Hawai`i News Daily

In fact, they have no idea WHAT they are doing. The idea seems to be to keep the problem from getting worse - but what they are actually doing is holding it in the worst situation possible - right between a full meltdown and a temporarily stopped meltdown. They will have to pour fresh, deionized water into all of those containments, essentially forever, just to hold what they have now - and that radioactive water has to go someplace. Trust me, they cannot convert destroyed reactors from light to heavy water reactors. After all the ships have been irradiated by hauling it into the middle of the Pacific and dumping it, there won't be any more ships - and there won't be any more fish. But the reactor will still be there dumping radiation into the water.

Since it is remotely possible to go around collecting fuel rods that haven't melted together yet, they will probably try to do that robotically at some point. They might get a hundred or so, but most of them are melted together, at least partially, because their pools of cooling water evaporated.

But the reactor cores are not going anywhere. They have melted down, also at least partially, and they are sitting in huge, cracked, concrete containment bunkers which didn't contain them.

existential enough yet?

'The history of public debt is full of irony. It rarely follows our ideas of order and justice.' Thomas Piketty

by melo (melometa4(at)gmail.com) on Sun Apr 3rd, 2011 at 07:55:30 AM EST
[ Parent ]
When he says
Anyway, here is the information that the US doesn't seem to want released. And here is a chart that might help with perspective.
he's linking to this simulation, forgetting to mention that the units of Becquerel/m3 are thousands of times smaller than background radiation.

Economics is politics by other means
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Sun Apr 3rd, 2011 at 08:01:33 AM EST
[ Parent ]
And dumping the contaminated water far out in the Pacific is FAR from the best solution. It is possible to extract most of the contamination from the water. A reverse osmosis plant designed for desalinization would probably do an excellent job, but this likely will end its usefulness as a source of fresh water. And there are likely other solutions cheaper than buying a desalinization plant. I recall that there were plants on site at Fukushima that served to decontaminate water, but have no idea of the throughput.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Sun Apr 3rd, 2011 at 11:46:08 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Given the cognitive Happy-Happy La-La-Land when they built the place I doubt the on-site throughput is much larger than normal operating needs.  

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre
by ATinNM on Sun Apr 3rd, 2011 at 01:12:02 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Even that would help.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Sun Apr 3rd, 2011 at 01:25:40 PM EST
[ Parent ]
It would help - for a while - no question.

I note, eventually, the RO membrane gets clogged and has to be cleaned or replaced.  Since these systems are not generally designed to filter sea water I'd bet the operational time and volumes wouldn't be all that great, each time the membrane is pulled it has to be checked to ensure it's working properly, if not replacement membranes have to be stalled (and where are they going to get 'em?,)  & etc. & blah-blah.

Plus if you've got people doing that they aren't doing something else that may be more important?

And it is questionable the system is still functional.

If it is functional the Incident Commander may be keeping in reserve for some very good reason(s).  One reason to withhold an asset is to give yourself the ability to react/respond to the unexpected.  

And it's possible they still haven't faced-up to the situation and are more interested in playing Save-Your-Face fiddlefuck games than dealing with the situation.

She believed in nothing; only her skepticism kept her from being an atheist. -- Jean-Paul Sartre

by ATinNM on Sun Apr 3rd, 2011 at 02:19:29 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Since these systems are not generally designed to filter sea water

Desalinization plants? If it will get rid of sodium and potassium chloride it will certainly block uranium and cesium particles or compounds. And clogging the filters with such contaminants would be the point, along with generating a much larger volume of relatively clean water which could be discharged into the ocean, or reinjected into the reactor cores for cooling. But the most immediately practical plan would be to make arrangements to use an existing RO facility and to pay for replacement fresh water via tankers for that portion of the plant devoted to decontamination along with paying for replacement or refurbishment of the contaminated RO equipment.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."
by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Sun Apr 3rd, 2011 at 03:23:01 PM EST
[ Parent ]

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