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Saturday, April 2, 2011

Which Does Humanity need worse: A Bucket List or Mop and Bucket?

The Light of Hope

   Yes, we are contemplating human folly yet again, as we read more about the ongoing disaster at Fukushima, Japan. Why?   Because as global citizens we are obliged to make ourselves aware what is happening, and not allow ourselves  to be misled or distracted by less than honest propaganda,  red herrings, elections and politics, or manufactured war.


    We have been reading  that scientifically, carefully-measured  radiation levels around the damaged  nuclear reactors continue  to rise  in spite of best efforts  of our  "world-class nuclear community" and others  to contain the problem.  Radiation levels from the four  seriously damaged nuclear reactors, it turns out, are already  more than a bit disconcerting. 
    At over 4300 times the maximum allowable  limit, local sea water is  unimaginably contaminated,  but will optimistically be "diluted",  --or so advises the informed nuclear establishment.  Yet another "out of sight, out of mind" solution is the temptation; dilution, the engineer's dream.  Is everyone  deluded enough to imagine sea life wouldn't  mind a little radiation after all, --is that the message we shall pass to our grandchildren ? 
    Well, all right. Let's  stop it quickly and clean it up instead....  A traditional mop and pail isn't exactly going to do the trick.  How about some wishful thinking, a bucket list ?  All human beings need a bucket list of wonderful plans and objectives to be completed and achieved prior to heading into the Great Beyond.  
    Now "jumpers", brave souls -- volunteers from around the globe, Europe and North America, dedicated, serious men seemingly with a death wish to save humanity itself -- are volunteering to work on  the reactors  to attempt to stem the flow of radiation and clean up.  Reportedly,  water in the tunnels under the reactor is far too dangerous to step  into.  Brave men struggled in Chernobyl, valiantly trying to do the same thing.  They died trying, too.      
In this tragedy, which does humanity need worse, a bucket list or a very large high-tech  mop and pail?  It seems both, but  perhaps a miracle would be more appropriate.  I wonder;  since scientists and technology created the problem,  are creationists obligated to solve it ?  There will be plenty of opportunity to hope and much reason to pray.
  Over in Europe,  wild boars  harvested in the forests of Germany--  over 1500 kilometers (950 miles) from Chernobyl  are now found to be contaminated with Cesium-137,  a radioactive isotope originating from the disaster at  Chernobyl  that  still remains a serious problem after a "mere"  25 years . The mushrooms and plant life eaten by the wild boars are highly contaminated. Radiation levels in the meat of the animals and the plants are reportedly thousands of times higher than normal.  What does that tell us?  Should we  close our eyes to that statistic?  Play ostrich?   Radiation from Fukushima  has already been detected in Canada and the United States. Should we believe our "officials" that say, "nothing to worry about".   Should we allow "officials", unknown to us,  to silently raise "allowed radiation levels" in consumable products, protecting the nuclear industry using a blank cheque written on the health of all of humanity?  At Incoming Bytes we think not. The time for truth has come.

The sad fact of the matter is,  if Chernobyl is any example, neither "bucket list" or high-tech mop & pail  treatment, no matter how well applied, will offer a quick fix for the growing problem in Japan. 
     Let us jest  and contemplate briefly the commandeering of a fix,  a solution, smiling, brave jumpers,  a couple of garden hoses, sprinklers,  a few  helicopter water drops  --and a few more brilliant-devised systems to pump ever more water into the reactors  to keep things cool.   Water IS required for cooling so the damaged reactor cores  won't  overheat, melt down further, releasing ever more radiation in the process of melting and burning.   Burning  releases radiation into the atmosphere rapidly as the nuclear fuel  burns merrily away, hot enough to melt holes in zirconium fuel tubes, casings and steel containment. 
    Pumping more water obviously introduces  more water into the reactor, which  ultimately  becomes contaminated.  More contaminated cooling water.   We don't have to ask where the water will go, do we ?   If it does not evaporate into atmosphere as contaminated steam boiled off from the extreme  heat, it  will  leak out into the sea, and contaminate an even larger volume of  seawater, spreading ever further. 
 An engineered disaster with catastrophic results.  Nature may not forgive.  Salmon  and killer-whales, mollusks and seals, sea-cucumber and starfish alike may be easy to see, glowing in the dark as they mutate to the last individual, for many years. 
 "The deadliest catch" is already being harvested.  The "knowledgeable, educated, wise and informed global nuclear community is harvesting precisely the crop they cultivated.  Out-of-control radiation.  Water or not, at best, it is  a catch-22, and a deadly one.


     What ultimately may be a far darker harbinger of things to come than mere sea-water, radioactive numbers and glowing sea-cucumbers  --is the stark, cold,  right-now, in-your face reality rescuers are dealing with  in the contaminated zone ;  radiation levels in the  exclusion zone are so high that rescuers, in protective gear and equipped with radiation alarms,  cannot remain in the area for long enough to be efficient,  even to do the necessary and grisly job of recovering  now-contaminated bodies of the victims from the endless rubble of that horrific earthquake and tsunami. Cremation of such bodies releases further radiation into the atmosphere.  
    The area may ultimately be so contaminated with radiation that it could be a "no man's land"  for a very long time to come.  The beautiful lands will longer produce milk, agricultural products or  any food fit for human consumption as they have done for centuries.  Fish and seafood from the area will no longer be fit for human consumption.  
 Tokyo is only a couple of hundred kilometers from Fukushima.  Let us not even contemplate that potential future health risk and disaster. Ultimately, humanity must pay the piper for arrogance.

     There is ONE genuine solution for the problem of damaged nuclear reactors and the inevitable nuclear crises that develop from them, but globally, humanity must have the resolve and ingenuity to change  direction, and become hopeful and clever enough to adapt change  universally --and immediately.   
The correct solution is to actually learn from the disasters at Three-Mile Island, Chernobyl and Fukushima--and  NEVER build another one. 
--Not in Japan, not in Darlington, Ontario, and nowhere else on the globe either. The price is too high in terms of potential danger, terms of health, and in terms of cost to humanity.  

The truth always comes out.   Nuclear reactors are NO LONGER an option under ANY TERMS OF REFERENCE. That's my opinion, and I'm sticking to it.

2 comments:

  1. The only questions you need ask your governments to end the nightmare for good are here:
    http://crisismaven.wordpress.com/2011/03/23/how-i-brought-down-the-nuclear-industry-in-my-country-and-how-you-can-do-it-in-yours/

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  2. radiation is an everyday problem for thinking humans; first we worry about too much sun on skin--then about iridiating of food stuffs, now years after we have placed Chernobyl on the forget-it list--we come across the shaky crust syndrome.
    the very layer we stand on has period adjustment fits, and man realizes that no level of preparedness will protect those precious convenient inventions from the unpredictable moods of earth.

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