Fukushima cover-ups continue: TEPCO subcontractor told rescuers to shield dosimeters with lead

Official of TEPCO subcontractor: Dosimeter ruse was one-time act


After 500 days, Fukushima No. 1 plant still not out of the woods

TEPCO workers are still unable to accurately grasp what the situation is within the pressure vessels.
…Half of the 36 thermometers on the pressure vessel of the No. 2 reactor are not displaying accurate temperatures.
…Cooling water continues to leak from parts damaged by the accident in the pressure vessels and containment vessels of the No. 1 to No. 3 reactors. Water that has been contaminated with radiation from the melted fuel continues to accumulate in the basements of the reactor buildings and neighboring turbine buildings. The total volume of that contaminated water, including that which has accumulated in nearby buildings, has reached 100,000 tons. Initial plans called for processing all contaminated water by the end of last year. However, several hundreds of tons of groundwater a day is flowing into the buildings and even though about 160,000 tons have been processed, or more than double the initial plan, the processing work is still not complete.
…The first nuclear fuel will be removed from the No. 4 reactor pool. Not only does that pool have the most fuel, equivalent to what would be used in three to four reactors, but because part of the wall and column of the reactor building was destroyed by a hydrogen explosion, there are concerns about its anti-quake strength.
…The biggest issue will be removing the fuel that has melted. Plans call for beginning that work from 2021 after all fuel has been removed from the storage pools at the No. 1 to No. 4 reactors.

GOVERNMENT PROBE: Nuclear accident panel urges shift in disaster preparedness

…The report criticized Tokyo Electric Power Co. and the government for their handling of the accident at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant, but it did not pinpoint the actual cause of the disaster that followed the Great East Japan Earthquake and tsunami on March 11 last year…
– TEPCO knew that a tsunami beyond assumptions was possible but failed to take countermeasures. TEPCO and government never thought about a complex disaster.
– Fukushima No. 1 plant had problems in cooling reactors, compared with Fukushima No. 2 plant, such as failure to take alternative steps.
– It is unlikely that important equipment was damaged by the earthquake, leading to loss of cooling functions.
– Evacuees’ exposure to radiation could have been minimized if SPEEDI data had been released.
– It cannot be concluded that TEPCO planned total withdrawal.
– Prime Minister Naoto Kan and other ministers did not utilize underground crisis management center, had problems in sharing information.
– Kan’s intervention caused confusion at plant.
– TEPCO failed to conduct thorough investigations into causes of accident and is not willing to use lessons to prevent recurrence.

TEPCO will relax conditions on release of nuke crisis videos

…While many hope the disclosure will be helpful into the investigation of the Fukushima disaster, TEPCO has long refused to release the footage, citing concerns over the privacy of its employees. Even though TEPCO has agreed to the release, only images and voices from an “abridged version,” edited by TEPCO, will be made available for broadcast to the public.

Anti-nuclear protesters surround the Diet in candle-lit protest

Taxpayers, electricity users finance TEPCO bailout

By piotrbein