Alternative Media

Drop in the Ocean?


In less than 50 years, ocean life as we know it could be completely done for. This not only means dead oceans, but a dead ecosystem, and mass deaths of all who depend on it. That means us. Does this sound far flung? So does the idea that vertebrate life in the oceans has decreased more than half in the past 40 years, but those are the statistics released by the World Wildlife Foundation’s 2014 Living Planet Index. In 1990, governments began to meet and discuss what we can do to reduce carbon emissions and avoid global warming.

According to information provided in a Drop in The Ocean, there are now 61% more carbon emission in the air than there were back then. What does it all mean, and what can we do now to improve things for ourselves and generations to come? These are the questions examined in this film.

As the film points out, many modern luxuries like global travel and the production of technology contribute to global warming. Should we give these up, or are there smarter approaches to take towards reducing carbon emissions? What might those approaches be, and how can governments get on board, inevitably leading countries full of citizens who have already expressed interests in these sorts of activities on the same path? The answers exist, at least partially, in the form of major institutions such as hospitals that use immense amounts of energy, and small towns where community run wind industries can offer real solutions to those who would opt for natural energy alternatives but simply can’t afford them at the going rate.

There is as much scientific evidence behind the dangers of climate change as there is behind the link between smoking cigarettes and cancer. While authority figures can deny climate change all together, or at least put off any direct action to improve things until it serves them some sort of direct benefit, the reason most everyday people donќt carry climate change issues at the forefront of their minds is quite different. Think about it, how often are we affected by what happens in the natural world, and to what extent?

Ireland being close to, and in some places, (including its ports) at sea level means that it is at a particular risk, but it is not the only place. Factual information being relayed to everyday people and direct action from our governments can change things. Those who stand to benefit from a system that means financial gain for the few at the cost of dangerous climate change and rising oceans for all of us have different priorities than the great many of us. Whatever end of the spectrum you fall on, this is a film worth watching, and a conversation worth engaging in.

Watch the full documentary now



Bilderberg’$ Club

Bilderberg'$ Club

They began meeting in secret in 1954. Their membership was comprised of the upper echelon of society; the most powerful and wealthy figures from the fields of academia, politics and business. The groupќs founders included tycoon David Rockefeller and Prince Bernhard of the Netherlands, both elite leaders within the oil industry. What may have started as a simple meeting of the minds, where current issues could be discussed, analyzed and debated, would soon morph into something far more sinister in its influence.

Cloaked in the shadows from the light of public scrutiny, these emperors of industrybegan to form their own self-serving agendas, and wielded their immense power and resources to redesign the world in their vision. They called themselves the Bilderberg group, and their organization still exists and operates to this day.

Today, this old institution must function in a climate which has become more aware of their particular brand of back-door dealings, thanks to a new wave of savvy investigative journalists and a searing and insightful new documentary titled Bilderberg’$ Club. The film takes on the monumental task of peeling away the secret history and ongoing influence of the organization.

The group’s current membership, as stated in the film by interview subject and editor of the American Free Press Jim Tucker, are “a bunch of unscrupulous, lousy, rotten international criminals.” More specifically, there are only a handful of core members who remain consistent, while many others are invited to join in on an as-needed basis. During their annual meetings, which take place over the course of a weekend, everyone from Bill Gates to heads of state may be included in the group’s private circle, depending upon the potential value and influence of each invited member on the topic of choice. As reported in the film, the decisions they agree upon behind closed doors profoundly impact the shaping of policy and public consciousness on issues as pressing as the price of oil to support for the war in Iraq.

In shining a much-needed light upon its unprecedented levels of secrecy and powerful world players, Bilderberg’$ Club bravely contends that the group’s lobbying powers represent nothing less than a threat to the democratic process.

Watch the full documentary now


Obama Reevaluating US Position on Israel? Don’t Bet on it!


A so-called special relationship began in March 1948 when Harry Truman met secretly with Israel’s future first president Chaim Weizmann.

He pledged support for the future Jewish state. Minutes after midnight on May 15, 1948, America was the first country extending recognition.

A special relationship remains strong for strategic reasons. It developed politically, economically and militarily.

Leaders come and go. Names and faces change. Bumps in the road occasionally occur.

Obama put up with Netanyahu for over six years. Both leaders clearly dislike each other.

Geopolitics alone matters. Expect no substantive change in US/Israeli relations ahead.

Ignore rhetoric. It’s meaningless. It’s unrelated to policies. Politicians say one thing and do another with disturbing regularity.

On the stump campaigning, Netanyahu categorically rejected Palestinian self-determination.

“Whoever moves to establish a Palestinian state or intends to withdraw from territory is simply yielding territory for radical Islamic terrorist attacks against Israel,” he said.

Asked if he meant no Palestinian state on his watch, he responded: “Indeed.”

Reelected Netanyahu’s rhetoric changed. “I don’t want a one-state solution,” he said.

“I want a sustainable, peaceful two-state solution. But for that, circumstances have to change.”

He means unconditional Palestinian surrender to Israeli demands. His position is no different from all Israeli leaders preceding him.

Fact: In 1948, Israel stole 78% of historic Palestine.

Fact: In 1967, it stole the rest.

Fact: No government in Israeli history supported Palestinian self-determination.

Fact: None supported a so-called peace process.

Fact: No significant Israeli political party today supports granting Palestinians rights mattering most.

Fact: None favor treating Arabs and Jews equally.

Fact: None support Palestinian statehood.

Fact: None back ending militarized occupation harshness.

Fact: None endorse changing longstanding racist policies in place since 1948.

Fact: US/Israeli relations remain rock solid.

Fact: Personal relationships between leaders don’t matter.

Fact: Longterm strategic relations determine policies of mutual interest.

Washington is Israeli-occupied territory. AIPAC-led Israeli Lobby power owns Congress. No US president ever dared defy it.

Nothing politicians or their spokespersons say holds water. Netanyahu’s demagogic bluster matches Obama’s.

They say one thing. They do another. On Wednesday, State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said:

“Based on (Netanyahu’s) comments, the United States is in a position going forward where we will be evaluating our approach with regard to how best to achieve a two-state solution.”

“But that doesn’t mean that we’ve made a decision about changing our position with respect to the UN.”

Fact: Rhetoric aside, Washington never supported Palestinian statehood.

Fact: It never backed sustainable, durable, equitable Israeli/Palestinian peace.

Fact: It consistently vetoes Security Council resolutions inimical to Israeli interests.

Fact: Expect no change in longstanding US policy toward Israel ahead.

Foreign Policy magazine commented on what it called Netanyahu’s “flip flop flip.”

It said “US officials signaled a willingness to consider a UN resolution in the event that Netanyahu was reelected and formed a coalition government opposed to peace talks.”

An unnamed Western diplomat was quoted saying “(t)he more the new government veers to the right, the more you will see something in New York.”

Longterm Israeli governance is right of center. Most often it’s been hard-right – notably under Begin, Shamir, Sharon and Netanyahu.

Israel’s first prime minister, David Ben-Gurion, was notoriously racist. So were all Israeli leaders following him.

Netanyahu is the latest in a long line of rogue prime ministers. US/Israeli relations remain fundamentally unchanged.

Washington will continue generously funding its war machine. Both countries partner in each other’s high crimes against peace.

Palestinian rights don’t matter. The so-called peace process is pure fantasy. It’s been stillborn throughout decades of talks.

World public opinion and BDS-type initiatives are Palestinians’ best hope for change.

All Israeli leaders reflect its dark side. Netanyahu’s demagogic thuggishness does best.

His rhetoric, style, demeanor and policies reveal Israel’s true face better than any of his predecessors.

Palestinian BDS National Committee’s Mahmoud Nawajaa called his reelection “a victory for apartheid and colonialism.”

He urged “supporters of freedom and justice across the world to join us in intensifying our efforts to boycott Israel and to push governments to impose sanctions against Israeli apartheid, just as South African apartheid was isolated.”

BDS co-founder Omar Barghouti added:

“Israel, a belligerent nuclear power that completely disregards international law and basic human rights, will soon have its most fanatical government ever, with grave consequences for Palestinians as well as for world peace. Israel has dropped the mask.”

A Judge Just Ordered the US Government to Release Thousands of Detainee Abuse Photo

By Jason Leopold

Neck Torture

The trickle of scandalous Abu Ghraib photos that surfaced in 2004 during the United States occupation of Iraq could soon become a flood after a federal judge on Friday ordered the government to release thousands of photographs of American soldiers abusing detainees at facilities in Iraq and Afghanistan.

US District Court Judge Alvin Hellerstein’s three-page order said the government failed to meet a deadline to certify that each of the 2,100 photographs in question would incite violence and “endanger Americans” if publicly released. But he gave it 60 days to appeal his decision. The government can continue to withhold the photographs in the meanwhile.

A Justice Department spokesperson did not respond to requests for comment.

The decision on the American Civil Liberties Union’s decade-long Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit is a major victory that arrives, fittingly, at the end of Sunshine Week, an annual initiative that promotes transparency and open government.

“The photos are crucial to the public record,” Jameel Jaffer, the ACLU’s deputy legal director, told VICE News. “They’re the best evidence of what took place in the military’s detention centers, and their disclosure would help the public better understand the implications of some of the Bush administration’s policies.”

Jaffer characterized the Obama administration’s rationale for suppressing the photos as both illegitimate and dangerous.

“To allow the government to suppress any image that might provoke someone, somewhere, to violence would be to give the government sweeping power to suppress evidence of its own agents’ misconduct,” he noted. “Giving the government that kind of censorial power would have implications far beyond this specific context.”

President Barack Obama pledged in 2009 that he would not defy a ruling by the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals that upheld a lower court’s decision ordering the Bush administration to release the photographs to the ACLU. He said he made the decision because the White House did not believe that it could convince the Supreme Court to review the case. Republicans and right-wing pundits, including former Vice President Dick Cheney and his daughter Liz, pilloried the new president, accusing him of siding with terrorists and questioning whether he really cared about US soldiers.

The White House worked with Congress to secretly change the FOIA law to allow the Secretary of Defense to withhold the images on national security grounds via a certification waiver that has to be renewed every three years. But Hellerstein suggested last year that the passage of time since the photos were taken removed the national security argument.

In his ruling on Friday, Hellerstein said a certification waiver renewed in 2012 by then-Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta blocking all of the photographs from disclosure was “deficient” because “it was not sufficiently individualized and it did not establish the Secretary’s own basis for concluding that disclosure would endanger Americans,” as required by the changes to the FOIA passed by Congress in 2009.

“The Government’s refusal to issue individual certifications means that the 2012 Certification remains invalid and therefore cannot exempt the Government from responding to [the ACLU’s] FOIA requests,” Hellerstein wrote in his order.

VICE News reviewed Army criminal investigative reports that probed detainee abuse allegations and contained descriptions of some of the controversial images. The Army reports and descriptions of the photographs can be found here: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5.

In one photograph, three soldiers at the St. Mere Forward Operating Base in Iraq posed with three Iraqi detainees who were “zip-tied to bars in a stress position, fully clothed, with hoods over their heads.” Army investigators also found that a soldier “possessed a photograph of himself pointing what appears to be a pistol at an unidentified [prisoner], whose hands were tied and his head covered laying down.”

Another photograph shows a female soldier holding a broom, as she later testified to Army investigators in April 2004, “as if I was sticking the end of a broom stick into the rectum of a restrained detainee.” A month earlier, this soldier sent an email to an undisclosed number of troops in her unit saying that she had discovered that the photograph had been widely disseminated and that she was under investigation.

“You guys have a picture of me holding a broom near a detainee,” she wrote. “I don’t have a copy of this picture anywhere… but some Marine got a hold of it and now I’m being investigated for detainee abuse. I guess one of you share (sic) the photos with the Marines… but either way, they have a copy of that picture.”

“Anyway, this email serves two purposes,” she continued. “First, I know that at least one more of you guys is in the picture, but I cannot remember who. If I’m being investigated… I’m sure that the other individuals in this picture will be investigated as well, so heads up! Secondly, can I please have a copy of this picture ASAP!!! I can’t stress how badly I need this picture so I can show people that it was just a posed shot, and that I wasn’t physically beating anyone with a broom.”

One soldier replied to the email by attaching a copy of the photograph and wrote, “I can’t see how they think this is anything but fun.”

In interviews with Army criminal investigators, the soldiers said that they intended to keep the prisoner abuse photographs as “mementos” to recall their deployment in Afghanistan.

Army investigators concluded that eight soldiers, all of whose identities were redacted, “committed the offense of dereliction of duty, when as guards detailed to secure and protect detainees, they willfully failed to perform their duties with no reasonable or just excuse, by jokingly pointing weapons at the bound detainees, and exposed photographs of this unwarranted activity.”

In 2009, Obama remarked that the photographs at issue “are not particularly sensational.”

“It’s therefore my belief that the publication of these photos would not add any additional benefit to our understanding of what was carried out in the past by a small number of individuals,” the president said.

But VICE News obtained documents from the Department of Defense in response to a FOIA request that indicate the photographs may be far more troubling than the administration had let on.

The documents [PDF below] state that the photographs were from 203 closed criminal investigations into detainee abuse that occurred in Afghanistan and Iraq. The Defense Department set up a task force to evaluate the images in May 2009, and the photographs were broken into three different categories:

  • Category A: Will require explanation; Egregious, iconic, dramatic.
  • Category B: Likely to require explanation; injury or humiliation.
  • Category C: May require explanation; injury without context.

The documents go on to explain how the US government intended to “mitigate the threat to security and political stability” and the response to the release of the photographs in 2009, which included apologies to “regional partners” and “audiences who find images humiliating.”

The CIA Just Declassified the Document That Supposedly Justified the Iraq Invasion

By Jason Leopold

Thirteen years ago, the intelligence community concluded in a 93-page classified document used to justify the invasion of Iraq that it lacked “specific information” on “many key aspects” of Iraqi President Saddam Hussein’s weapons of mass destruction (WMD) programs.

But that’s not what top Bush administration officials said during their campaign to sell the war to the American public. Those officials, citing the same classified document, asserted with no uncertainty that Iraq was actively pursuing nuclear weapons, concealing a vast chemical and biological weapons arsenal, and posing an immediate and grave threat to US national security.

Congress eventually concluded that the Bush administration had “overstated” its dire warnings about the Iraqi threat, and that the administration’s claims about Iraq’s WMD program were “not supported by the underlying intelligence reporting.” But that underlying intelligence reporting — contained in the so-called National Intelligence Estimate (NIE) that was used to justify the invasion — has remained shrouded in mystery until now.

The CIA released a copy of the NIE in 2004 in response to a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request, but redacted virtually all of it, citing a threat to national security. Then last year, John Greenewald, who operates The Black Vault, a clearinghouse for declassified government documents, asked the CIA to take another look at the October 2002 NIE to determine whether any additional portions of it could be declassified.

The agency responded to Greenewald this past January and provided him with a new version of the NIE, which he shared exclusively with VICE News, that restores the majority of the prewar Iraq intelligence that has eluded historians, journalists, and war critics for more than a decade. (Some previously redacted portions of the NIE had previously been disclosed in congressional reports.)

‘The fact that the NIE concluded that there was no operational tie between Saddam and al Qaeda did not offset this alarming assessment.’

For the first time, the public can now read the hastily drafted CIA document [pdf below] that led Congress to pass a joint resolution authorizing the use of military force in Iraq, a costly war launched March 20, 2003 that was predicated on “disarming” Iraq of its (non-existent) WMD, overthrowing Saddam Hussein, and “freeing” the Iraqi people.

report issued by the government funded think-tank RAND Corporation last December titled “Blinders, Blunders and Wars” said the NIE “contained several qualifiers that were dropped…. As the draft NIE went up the intelligence chain of command, the conclusions were treated increasingly definitively.”

An example of that: According to the newly declassified NIE, the intelligence community concluded that Iraq “probably has renovated a [vaccine] production plant” to manufacture biological weapons “but we are unable to determine whether [biological weapons] agent research has resumed.” The NIE also said Hussein did not have “sufficient material” to manufacture any nuclear weapons and “the information we have on Iraqi nuclear personnel does not appear consistent with a coherent effort to reconstitute a nuclear weapons program.”

But in an October 7, 2002 speech in Cincinnati, Ohio, then-President George W. Bush simply said Iraq, “possesses and produces chemical and biological weapons” and “the evidence indicates that Iraq is reconstituting its nuclear weapons program.”

One of the most significant parts of the NIE revealed for the first time is the section pertaining to Iraq’s alleged links to al Qaeda. In September 2002, then-Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld claimed the US had “bulletproof” evidence linking Hussein’s regime to the terrorist group.

“We do have solid evidence of the presence in Iraq of al Qaeda members, including some that have been in Baghdad,” Rumsfeld said. “We have what we consider to be very reliable reporting of senior-level contacts going back a decade, and of possible chemical- and biological-agent training.”

But the NIE said its information about a working relationship between al Qaeda and Iraq was based on “sources of varying reliability” — like Iraqi defectors — and it was not at all clear that Hussein had even been aware of a relationship, if in fact there were one.

“As with much of the information on the overall relationship, details on training and support are second-hand,” the NIE said. “The presence of al-Qa’ida militants in Iraq poses many questions. We do not know to what extent Baghdad may be actively complicit in this use of its territory for safehaven and transit.”

The declassified NIE provides details about the sources of some of the suspect intelligence concerning allegations Iraq trained al Qaeda operatives on chemical and biological weapons deployment — sources like War on Terror detainees who were rendered to secret CIA black site prisons, and others who were turned over to foreign intelligence services and tortured. Congress’s later investigation into prewar Iraq intelligence concluded that the intelligence community based its claims about Iraq’s chemical and biological training provided to al Qaeda on a single source.

“Detainee Ibn al-Shaykh al-Libi — who had significant responsibility for training — has told us that Iraq provided unspecified chemical or biological weapons training for two al-Qai’ida members beginning in December 2000,” the NIE says. “He has claimed, however, that Iraq never sent any chemical, biological, or nuclear substances — or any trainers — to al-Qa’ida in Afghanistan.”

Al-Libi was the emir of the Khaldan training camp in Afghanistan, which the Taliban closed prior to 9/11 because al-Libi refused to turn over control to Osama bin Laden.

Last December, the Senate Intelligence Committee released a declassified summary of its so-called Torture Report on the CIA’s “enhanced interrogation” program. A footnote stated that al-Libi, a Libyan national, “reported while in [redacted] custody that Iraq was supporting al-Qa’ida and providing assistance with chemical and biological weapons.”

“Some of this information was cited by Secretary [of State Colin] Powell in his speech to the United Nations, and was used as a justification for the 2003 invasion of Iraq,” the Senate torture report said. “Ibn Shaykh al-Libi recanted the claim after he was rendered to CIA custody on February [redacted] 2003, claiming that he had been tortured by the [redacted], and only told them what he assessed they wanted to hear.”

Al-Libi reportedly committed suicide in a Libyan prison in 2009, about a month after human rights investigators met with him.

The NIE goes on to say that “none of the [redacted] al-Qa’ida members captured during [the Afghanistan war] report having been trained in Iraq or by Iraqi trainers elsewhere, but given al-Qa’ida’s interest over the years in training and expertise from outside sources, we cannot discount reports of such training entirely.”

All told, this is the most damning language in the NIE about Hussein’s links to al Qaeda: While the Iraqi president “has not endorsed al-Qa’ida’s overall agenda and has been suspicious of Islamist movements in general, apparently he has not been averse to some contacts with the organization.”

The NIE suggests that the CIA had sources within the media to substantiate details about meetings between al Qaeda and top Iraqi government officials held during the 1990s and 2002 — but some were not very reliable. “Several dozen additional direct or indirect meetings are attested to by less reliable clandestine and press sources over the same period,” the NIE says.

The RAND report noted, “The fact that the NIE concluded that there was no operational tie between Saddam and al Qaeda did not offset this alarming assessment.”

The NIE also restores another previously unknown piece of “intelligence”: a suggestion that Iraq was possibly behind the letters laced with anthrax sent to news organizations and senators Tom Daschle and Patrick Leahy a week after the 9/11 attacks. The attacks killed five people and sickened 17 others.

“We have no intelligence information linking Iraq to the fall 2001 attacks in the United States, but Iraq has the capability to produce spores of Bacillus anthracis — the causative agent of anthrax — similar to the dry spores used in the letters,” the NIE said. “The spores found in the Daschle and Leahy letters are highly purified, probably requiring a high level of skill and expertise in working with bacterial spores. Iraqi scientists could have such expertise,” although samples of a biological agent Iraq was known to have used as an anthrax simulant “were not as pure as the anthrax spores in the letters.”

Paul Pillar, a former veteran CIA analyst for the Middle East who was in charge of coordinating the intelligence community’s assessments on Iraq, told VICE news that “the NIE’s bio weapons claims” was based on unreliable sources such as Ahmad Chalabi, the former head of the Iraqi National Congress, an opposition group supported by the US.

“There was an insufficient critical skepticism about some of the source material,” he now says about the unredacted NIE. “I think there should have been agnosticism expressed in the main judgments. It would have been a better paper if it were more carefully drafted in that sort of direction.”

But Pillar, now a visiting professor at Georgetown University, added that the Bush administration had already made the decision to go to war in Iraq, so the NIE “didn’t influence [their] decision.” Pillar added that he was told by congressional aides that only a half-dozen senators and a few House members read past the NIE’s five-page summary.

David Kay, a former Iraq weapons inspector who also headed the Iraq Survey Group, told Frontline that the intelligence community did a “poor job” on the NIE, “probably the worst of the modern NIE’s, partly explained by the pressure, but more importantly explained by the lack of information they had. And it was trying to drive towards a policy conclusion where the information just simply didn’t support it.”

The most controversial part of the NIE, which has been picked apart hundreds of times over the past decade and has been thoroughly debunked, pertained to a section about Iraq’s attempts to acquire aluminum tubes. The Bush administration claimed that this was evidence that Iraq was pursuing a nuclear weapon.

National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice stated at the time on CNN that the tubes “are only really suited for nuclear weapons programs, centrifuge programs,” and that “we don’t want the smoking gun to be a mushroom cloud.”

The version of the NIE released in 2004 redacted the aluminum tubes section in its entirety. But the newly declassified assessment unredacts a majority of it and shows that the intelligence community was unsure why “Saddam is personally interested in the procurement of aluminum tubes.” The US Department of Energy concluded that the dimensions of the aluminum tubes were “consistent with applications to rocket motors” and “this is the more likely end use.” The State Department’s Bureau of Intelligence and Research also disagreed with the intelligence community’s assertions that Iraq had reconstituted its nuclear weapons program.

The CIA’s 25-page unclassified summary of the NIE released in 2002 did not contain the State or Energy Departments’ dissent.

“Apart from being influenced by policymakers’ desires, there were several other reasons that the NIE was flawed,” the RAND study concluded. “Evidence on mobile biological labs, uranium ore purchases from Niger, and unmanned-aerial-vehicle delivery systems for WMDs all proved to be false. It was produced in a hurry. Human intelligence was scarce and unreliable. While many pieces of evidence were questionable, the magnitude of the questionable evidence had the effect of making the NIE more convincing and ominous. The basic case that Saddam had WMDs seemed more plausible to analysts than the alternative case that he had destroyed them. And analysts knew that Saddam had a history of deception, so evidence against Saddam’s possession of WMDs was often seen as deception.”

According to the latest figures compiled by Iraq Body Count, to date more than 200,000 Iraqi civilians have been killed, although other sources say the casualties are twice as high. More than 4,000 US soldiers have been killed in Iraq, and tens of thousands more have been injured and maimed. The war has cost US taxpayers more than $800 billion.

In an interview with VICE founder Shane Smith, Obama said the rise of the Islamic State was a direct result of the disastrous invasion.

“ISIL is a direct outgrowth of al Qaeda in Iraq that grew out of our invasion,” Obama said. “Which is an example of unintended consequences. Which is why we should generally aim before we shoot.”

Fukushima: New images show all melted fuel is “gone” from Fukushima reactor


NHK, Mar 19, 2015 (emphasis added): Images show no fuel inside No.1 reactor core — Researchers say X-ray-like photos of a crippled reactor at the Fukushima Daiichi plant have confirmed that no nuclear fuel remains in the reactor core… extremely high radiation levels have prevented experts from locating and determining the state of the molten fuel. Experts… have succeeded in taking X-ray-like photos of the plant’s No.1 reactor… But they did not find fuel inside the core… Experts say the finding that most of the fuel had leaked out of the reactor core underlines the difficulties faced in scrapping the reactor.

Kyodo News, Mar 20, 2015: Tepco confirms nearly all fuel melted, sank into vessel, in Fukushima No. 1 unit — [TEPCO] said Thursday it has confirmed that nearly all fuel in reactor 1 at its Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant has melted and fallen into the containment vessel… The result marks thefirst confirmation of a meltdown

Mainichi, Mar 20, 2015: (TEPCO) released a “see-through” image of the No. 1 reactor… on March 19, suggesting that most of the nuclear fuel was no longer in the reactor… The inside of the reactor’s pressure vessel, which holds the nuclear fuel, showed as white, meaning that most of the fuel was gone. The muons should have shown the presence of fuel rods around one meter or longer… It marks the first time the interiors of the Fukushima plant’s reactors have been directly photographed… TEPCO plans to insert a camera-equipped robot into the lower part of the containment vessel to look for the melted fuel.

TEPCO spokesman, Mar 19, 2015: “The latest study provided further data that we like to regard as a progress in our effort to determine the exact locations of the debris.”

AFP, Mar 20, 2015: Nuclear experts said Friday that the test showed the nuclear fuel rods had melted beyond recognition… “But there has been no evidence that the fuel has melted through the nuclear containment buildings and reached the outer environment,” [Hiroshi Miyano, a visiting professor at Hosei University] told AFP. However, the test… did not look at the bottompart of the reactor, with some experts suggesting it was not possible to tell if the fuel was still contained… “Eventually, TEPCO is aiming to scoop out the melted fuel little by little, rather than burying it in concrete“… Miyano said… [The process] reveals exactly where the fuel is — or isn’tlying…  “We presume that despite the meltdown, the fuel is still in thecontainment vessel,” said Tomohisa Ito, a spokesman for the International Research Institute for Nuclear Decommissioning [which includes both TEPCO and Hitachi-GE as members]… “Butwe still need to directly check the situation one day using remote-controlled robots,” he said.

Watch NHK’s broadcast here

Related Posts

  1. NHK News Flash: Meltdown at Fukushima worse than thought — Most of nuclear fuel ‘melted through’ Reactor 3 and “continued down to bottom of outer containment vessel” — “Has changed their understanding of what’s happening inside” (VIDEO) August 6, 2014
  2. Molten fuel bore a hole at bottom of Containment Vessel at Reactor No. 1– Pressure Vessel is “completely broken” says Kyoto U. nuclear professor May 17, 2011
  3. Japan Official: Fuel from Fukushima reactors is “melting down daily” — AP: No way of confirming melted fuel is at bottom of containment vessels — Tepco Adviser: “Schedule for decommissioning the plant is pure supposition” — The Economist: This is ‘Mission Impossible’ (VIDEO) February 8, 2015
  4. Bloomberg: ‘Highly radioactive’ leak at Fukushima Unit 3 — NHK: Melted fuel coolant thought to be flowing from containment vessel for ‘unknown reason’ — 24 Million Bq/liter of strontium, other beta emitters (VIDEO) January 20, 2014
  5. Video: Fukushima had “meltdown, melt-through, & melt-out within days of quake” — US Gov’t: Analysis says containment vessel fails after fuel melts through barrier — Experts: Corium may have melted out to reactor building, prepare for radiation doses over 200,000,000 microsieverts/hour March 10, 2015

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Encyclopedia Miscellaneous - 'quality' blogging since August 2011

Get It Write

Derek Dubolski: A Writer's Blog:

Uncle Spike's Adventures

Opinion, photography & travel blogging from a small rural farm in Türkiye

Kyopos - 교포

A place for all kyopos


“During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act” – George Orwell


Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a persistent one. So get a few laughs and do the best you can. Don't have an ideal to work for. That's like riding towards the mirage of a lake.

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