Down, kicked and getting worse; even the offline reactors at Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station are in trouble thanks the inability to pump cooling water to the fuel-storage areas. #4 was the scene of incredible heroism yesterday; it has been reported that after oil spilled from a pump into the storage tank caught fire, crews stayed and fought it, put it out, at the personal cost of considerable radiation exposure.
But troubles persist; according to the report linked above, every reactor in the complex has problems. For a rational discussion of just what those problems might be, this is the best site I have found.
Meanwhile, oldstream media in the US continues to trot out anti-nuclear activists as "nuclear experts"* and you'll find a guide to the players at Pajamas Media along with further thoughts about the mess. Remember, these guys will show up on your screen at home with graphics that say only "nuclear scientist" or suchlike, nary a word of their opposition to atomic power. --Other than the way they eagerly seize the chance to play up fear.
...And all that remains a sideshow to people huddled together in refugee shelters while snow falls, short on food and water, because of an earthquake and tsunami. (Remember those?) The reactor problems and the efforts to contain them may yet take lives; around 50 brave men fought the fire at #4 while spent -- but still hot and "hot" -- fuel rods were exposed; but the 10,000+ lost to dear, loving Mother Gaia are getting short shrift while the media shrilly shills the possible effects of what they're still calling "radiation release" from Fukushima Daiichi. Yeah, that matters a lot to the guy safely indoors in a shelter, wondering if any other member of his family survived; and what are ten thousand real deaths compared to, say, the 4000 statistcally-predicted shortened lives due to Chernobyl?
Not much, to the boob tube and its ailing ink-and-pulp appendages.
* Many of them "expert" in power plant technology much the same way that Paul Helmke is an expert on firearms technology: not a bit.
CHICAGO RAILROAD FAIR, 1948
3 days ago