Yet more lying toads about nuclear

5 Years Living with Fukushima is a report outlining the devastating health effects of the still ongoing disaster of the meltdown of three reactors at Fukushima Daiichi. We estimate 10,000-66,000 excess cases of cancer, half resulting in death from this event, even using the underestimated radiation emission data from the WHO and the Japanese government.

That’s in the coming decades. Call it three decades then?

Number of cancer cases a year in Japan is 800,000 or so. Over three decades call it 24 million cases. A 0.04% increase in incidence then. Not something we’ll ever be able to measure and perhaps not something that we’d be greatly concerned about.

But here’s how we know they’re being the most ghastly lying little cunts:

And the tragedy continues to
the present day. Approximately 300 tons of radioactive wastewater
flows unchecked into the ocean every day. The Fukushima disaster
already created the most severe radioactive contamination of the
oceans in human history.

I can’t be bothered to go back and look up the figures again but let’s get this right. The 300 tonnes a day is groundwater which is flowing under (possibly even through) the site and then out to sea. The only radioactivity it picks up is tritium as that’s the only bit that isn’t filtered out through the process of the ground water moving through the, erm, ground. The effect of that tritium upon the levels in the ocean is, to any level of reasonable accuracy, nothing. Because the oceans already contain quite a lot of it.

Thus, obviously, something contaminated those oceans more severely than this event did.

They’re cunts and they’re lying.

40 thoughts on “Yet more lying toads about nuclear”

  1. This is the green lobby beginning to realise that they have painted themselves into a corner. Carbon taxes/subsidies to wind and solar are closing coal plants and base load is getting dangerously low. They now realise the politicians aren’t going to let the lights go out, and nuclear is the only current alternative for base load, absent fracking. Hence the attempts to demonise the safest fuel we have ever developed. Sooner or later mothers and fathers whose children are getting cold during power outages are going to start hunting environmentalists down.

  2. @RobW, you don’t need to wait for children getting cold. The first environmentalist who loses internet access will have an overnight Damascus road experience…

  3. Sorry, slight tangent.
    I am old enough to remember the start of nuclear power in the UK, the promises of electricity so cheap it would be virtually free. Power unlimited, cheap and forever. Surprise surprise none of the promises materialised. Now the government have signed contracts for the next generation nuclear power, guaranteeing purchase of the power at double the current going rate. Will that mean cheaper power or massive rises to the average utility bill? plus of course, the ongoing Levi on our bills to subsidise “green” power generation. By God I hate politicians and their cozy, cronies deals.

  4. Given the number of lives which they claim are lost to pollution from coal and oil, I’d have thought nuclear has saved more lives than that. We really can’t provide energy by knitting our own muesli.

  5. To paraphrase the CEO of Friends of the Earth: “We love Greenpeace, because whenever they’ve been talking to government, we can go in afterwards and the government thinks we’re sane and rational and the sort of people they can do a deal with”.

  6. Be care @Bemused, with your ‘ongoing Levi’ on electricity bills you’ll have Dave berating you for being one of those closet Joo haters

  7. Bloke in Germany in Japan

    There is now one officially Fukushima-related cancer (can’t remember if it was a death, was in the Japan Times a few days ago). There definitely will be many to come (in the hundreds at least), among the cleanup workers. All of whom are volunteers and, one assumes, aware of the risks.

    The biggest cost seems to be the laying waste of large parts of the country for, now, 5 years, slightly smaller parts for another 20-30 years, and the likelihood that the immediate area of Fukushima will be a difficult-to-contain dump of high to low radioactive waste for, oh, a few millennia. Exposed to who knows how many quakes and tsunamis over that period, not to mention the groundwater problem, which still has no solution in sight. Subterranean walls and frozen earth will cost a fortune to maintain for the next hundred years, let alone the next thousand.

    Even a nuclear fan (which I was) has to ask if it is worth us finding out what the cost of the next unexpected triple-meltdown under unplanned-for and unprecedented circumstances will be. Because there will be another one – and the nuclear industry’s “mean time between failures” isn’t currently very encouraging.

  8. Slight tangent here too:

    The BBC’s description of the The Svalbard Global Seed Vault’s location:

    “There’s a reason scientists chose Spitsbergen: the island isn’t rocked by tectonic activity, has preservation-boosting permafrost and is 130m above sea level, ensuring the site will remain dry – and the seeds safe – even if global warming causes ice caps to melt. So secure is Spitsbergen, in fact, that studies project seeds could survive there for hundreds, if not thousands, of years.”

    But…. I thought that was impossible!??!?!

  9. @BIG

    I think ultimately it’s the economics of safety that might see off nuclear power in its current incarnation. If people want it to be much more safe, it will presumably have to be much much more expensive.

  10. The French just seem to get on with building theirs. How do French electricity charges to end-users compare?

  11. RobW
    Sooner or later mothers and fathers whose children are getting cold during power outages are going to start hunting environmentalists down.

    I thought you had to dry out the greens before you could burn them.

  12. Bloke in Germany in Japan


    I agree.

    Because either it’s a lot more safe, in which case it’s a lot more expensive than we want, or it’s as safe as it is now, in which case it’s a lot more expensive than we thought 30 years ago.

  13. Bloke in Germany in Japan


    How much of the cost of current French nuclear power will be borne by French taxpayers in 1000 years as opposed to being borne by consumers today?

  14. For the moment, I’m only interested in values now, not next millennium.

    Earlier I asked about electricity pricing, but I’m also interested in how much the plants cost to build in France, and how the cost breaks down.

  15. Germany has gone back to coal. The U.K. Is doing neither coal, gas or nuclear to any meaningful extent, and relying on diesel to fill the gap. A more stupid outcome is difficult to imagine for policies whose intent is to protect the environment. The largest economies in Europe forced into the dirtiest sources of fuel by environmentalists.

  16. So Much For Subtlety

    MyBurningEars – “I think ultimately it’s the economics of safety that might see off nuclear power in its current incarnation. If people want it to be much more safe, it will presumably have to be much much more expensive.”

    I don’t see why. The present set of designs is pretty damn safe. But they could be made much safer with minimal effort. You can design a seriously safe reactor – TRIGA is a good example. It is not expensive. The Swedes came up with PIUS that was not particularly expensive.

    What is holding nuclear power back is the Green lobby. They force everything to court and then delay, delay, delay. They demand every new reactor is re-licenced even if that design had won a dozen previous licences. Anything to drive up the price. France builds cheaply. South Korea has consistently driven down prices with every new reactor being cheaper.

    We could do it too if we had the balls and the brains. But then look at getting a rifle for the Army. We lack both.

  17. BiG: Absolute crap.

    How did the Japan Times say that this cancer was determined to be Fukushima caused?

    And are we to believe that hundreds of clean-up workers where allowed to receive doses of radiation like to cause cancer? Is Unit 731 still in existence and running the Japanese nuclear industry?

    Bull-fucking shit.

    You have spent too long in the truly poisonous orbit of German eco-freak scum.

    As for the waste-land malarkey–most of the radiation will be gone far sooner than the eco-liars crack on. Freezing is a fuckwit gimmick dreamed up by Japanese political scum.

  18. Re the above links –I had to go about ten pages deep on the search engine–DuckDuck Go of course–to find any links that were not a pile of eco-shite from either the media, professional eco-liars or nutjob eco-blogs–all promoting end-of-the-world crapola.

    Even the blog that debunks the seawater nonsense still makes a few dumb comments about how bad things were supposed to be at Fuku itself.

    Access To Energy newsletter is something I thought long-vanished.

    I was a subscriber for several years to this back in the early 80s –when it arrived once a month in the post. Petr Beckmann ran it then–an escapee from Eastern Europe who hated both the left and esp leftist eco-liars. It is a shame that he is no longer living as he would have had the knowledge and expertise together with a fantastic range of facts at his command such as to finish the Fuku eco-bullshiters with one article.

    I am glad to find that AtE still exists and I shall try a years subscription. If it is half the newsletter it was when Beckmann was alive it will be money well spent.

  19. Bloke in Germany in Japan


    To the limited extent your foul-mouthed ignorance of your own limited intellect and education deserves acknowledgement, here it is:

    Workers claims for Fukushima-related injuries are evaluated by some kind of commission (sorry, can’t give you much detail). They’ve received a number of cancer claims (all leukaemias), and have rejected all and accepted one.

    Are they working on the basis of absolute certainty that this worker’s cancer was due to radiation exposure (and conversely, that the others were not)? No. This is medicine – we don’t deal in certainty very much, but have to make decisions based on available (often very limited) evidence. While death is certain, most other endpoints (including causes of death) are probability-based. In this way medicine as an intellectual endeavour is more like law than physics.

  20. Bloke in Germany in Japan

    To answer your other question, yes, a significant proportion of the workers have received excessive exposure. Most of them between 1-2 times the legal limits for radiation workers (which you might not worry about until you realise that over 30,000 people are involved), fewer have had significantly more.

    You have no idea what they are doing here. They are scraping soil and rocks off the surface of thousands of square kilometres of Japan, and bagging it up, and working out what to do with the large amount of it that turns out to be, legally, low-level radioactive waste. The cost of this incident, over centuries, is going to be insane.

    Incidentally I was a registered radiation worker for about 10 years and never got anywhere close to the lower legal limit (for people not working in power or reprocessing plants).

  21. How many deaths are caused by coal mining per year?

    Off the top of my head I can point to 4 in the UK alone in the last few years(
    Estimates are that 12,000 men die in mining accidents every year globally (
    Then there’s all the premature deaths of miners from black lung disease, which must run into tens of thousands more per year.

    But one person dying from a nuclear related cancer trumps all that I suppose.

  22. Bloke in Germany in Japan


    I don’t see anyone claiming trumps here, but starting a debate with some facts, rather than ignorant BS from those who think radiation is clearly good for you (yeah, you obviously never heard of hormesis! The centre of the Sun is the healthiest place in the solar system!) is more likely to add light than heat, isn’t it.

  23. What they are doing is a grotesque over-reaction occasioned by eco-fuckwit crawlers in the Japanese state. If the Japanese govt bankrupts itself–which it in reality already has bar all but the ultimate collapse and effects–the it will serve the polits right.

    Twice the limit is not that much–as the limit is set low.

    Are you suggesting that the onsite workforce in Japan are being treated– in this day and age–as a pack of expendable coolies that are being allowed to receive any dose of radiation that comes their way? Is Japan denuded of–and/or too poor to produce– anti-contamination suits and radiation dose badges and replace workers who get anywhere near the legal limit never mind twice that? Where are you getting this bullshit from? Are you on site?

    Low level radiation is just that –low. The expensive idiocy of bagging vast quantities of soil that is not that dangerous anyway and will cease to be radioactive in a short period of time is a mind-boggling example of how vile, wasteful and brain-dead the scum of the state are. Eco-liars have conned the average mug such that they believe you only have to say the word “radioactive” and you need to look around for a bucket to collapse into

    A “registered radiation worker”? Are you– like Peanut Carter — claiming to be a newclear engineer?

    Or is more like a Dentist or Vet who gives X-Rays?

  24. Above addressed to BiG.

    Also Jim is entirely correct. And not just about miners. Back in the early 80s approx. 37000 people each year lost their lives from coal waste being disposed in the atmosphere and causing lung etc problems. Vastly more deaths each year than have ever died or ever will from the use of nuclear power. The figs will have changed by now but I hope Access To Energy will update the figs.

    If any one wants a really good summation of the case for nukes buy a second hand copy of Dr Petr Beckmann “The Health Hazards of NOT going Nuclear” . Even tho it is 30 years old and nukes have got even safer since then it is still a one shot destruction of the anti-nuke anti-science eco-liars.

  25. @Jim – how many deaths from uranium mining each year?Genuine question don’t know the answer.

    To the people talking about the French building cheap reactors, that might once have been the case, but sadly they too are now building them expensive. Flammanville, and the one they’re building in Finland, are both years behind schedule, and massively over budget. A quick google shows up this:-

    And remember EdF are going to be building Hinkley C. Incidentally apparently they’ve already spent 10% of the budget just levelling a valley where it’s to b built. Assuming it ever gets the go ahead the best case is that these last two reactors will have been the guinea pigs for Hinkley C. What it seems to me is going on is that safety regulations are making it impossible to build cheap nukes. I reckon there must be a good chance Iran will build a nuclear power plant before we do. I can’t see us ever convincing the public that nukes are very safe, even the usually rational BIGIJ is running around like Caroline Lucas on acid, when talking about Fukushima. I just can’t see that with modern technology that the new generation of nukes are any less safe than the dozens that have been running for decades without serious incident in Western countries.

    I still think the most likely scenario is that we’ll have a crash course of building CGCT plants when reality finally sinks in.

    In the medium term the Chinese will make huge strides on other types of fission reactors, and in the very long term fusion is still a possibility.

  26. The biggest cost seems to be the laying waste of large parts of the country

    That would be those parts of Japan which are now slightly less radioactive than that notorious radioactive wasteland Cornwall (or Aberdeenshire for Scottish readers).

  27. The Japanese government should declare the whole area an honorary hospital: then radioactive dose rates that would be forbidden to a power station would be deemed harmless. That would solve much of the problem with one stroke of a pen.

  28. Jim>

    “Be care @Bemused, with your ‘ongoing Levi’ on electricity bills you’ll have Dave berating you for being one of those closet Joo haters”

    Hah 🙂

    Meanwhile, over at Ritchie’s place:

    Sadly I’m actually right about Ritchie and neoantisemitism.

    Ian Reid>

    “how many deaths from uranium mining each year?”

    Off the top of my head – it’s a while since I checked the numbers – it’s a negligible number. On the other hand, though, a higher proportion of uranium mining is done in the richer parts of the world, with higher safety standards, more capital investment and less use of labour, and so-on, than coal mining, and that skews the figures somewhat.

  29. Bloke in Germany in Japan


    You are using dubiously-sourced numbers as well. Show me the death certificates!

    The overexposure of cleanup workers is modest in most cases but the numbers affected are high, which is why it is of primarily economic concern to the Japanese government. Five figures. Badges don’t go “beep – evacuate now!” once you hit the limit. With uneven contamination you can’t predict easily who is likely to get more or less.

    Am I on site? Sorry, that is classified information.

    There is an unbelievable amount of denialism going on here, as if nuclear accidents are good for people. A little bit of radiation does no harm, y’know, so what can a bit more do? I remember a few years ago on this blog, reports of weird isotopes found in Canada, I think, (the kind of weird stuff you can only find after a nuke has leaked or a bomb gone off), and people denying Fukushima had anything to do with it.

    This accident is going to eat a few years of Japanese GDP, over the next hundred(s) of years. That might be a price worth paying for nukes, I tend to think that I don’t need to even do a back-of-envelope calculation to conclude it’s not. We have one catastrophic blow every 30 years, roughly, and as wonderfully safe as the reactor designs are there is always something unexpected to happen. The next one will be a black swan as well, and I’m glad it won’t be Biblis that melts down.

  30. There’s no doubt that the Japanese government’s response to the incident – deny, deny, deny, deny, full eco freak out – killed many more people than the incident itself. All those people forced from their homes and made into refugees over a health risk that was rather trivial in and of itself. The topsoil removal business is just insane, a grotesquely expensive PR stunt. Their handling of the nuke issue has been a complete fiasco from soup to nuts. Very sad.

  31. BIGIJ>

    Comments? If the numbers given in that piece are correct, then the ‘excess’ incidence of thyroid growths is bollocks – which leaves the rest of your theory on rather shaky ground.

    Personally, I think you’ve missed something: the null hypothesis here is that people looking as hard for some effect as these campaigners are will be almost bound to find _something_. If the best they can come up with is a rather dubious claim of a couple of hundred excess cancers, that’s a very clear indicator that there is no great risk, because otherwise they’d be telling us how the sky is falling.

  32. BiG–It is not a case of “denialism” –you are plain full of eco-shit.

    If I can find my copy of Beckmann’s book in the attic I will quote the source for the 37000 deaths from coal-burning by-products “disposed” of in the air at that time ( early 80s). Beckmann always fully annotated meticulously –unlike the Green bullshit corps you get your tripe from.

    Don’t worry about Japanese GDP that is going down the pan without nuclear assistance. Altho’ JeryyC is entirely right about their demented antics.

    “The overexposure of cleanup workers is modest in most cases”

    And what their being exposed to is also modest. ModestXmodest=fuckall of substance.

    ” but the numbers affected are high,”

    Lots of people exposed to very little radiation means that a tiny number more might –might, I say –die of cancer than would have died of cancer anyway. In about 40 to 50 years because it takes that long for the tiny effects to show up in the population.

    ” which is why it is of primarily economic concern to the Japanese government. Five figures.”

    The eco–nomic and logical–lunacy of the Japanese state is their problem.

    ” Badges don’t go “beep – evacuate now!” once you hit the limit. With uneven contamination you can’t predict easily who is likely to get more or less.”

    If wearing a badge is a radiation lottery there would be little point in wearing them The Japanese have access to more than enough monitoring gear to track the levels of radio-activity and there is no excuse for anyone to get twice the legal dose. And if it such a lethal problem WTF are they doing wasting colossal time, energy and cash pissing about with topsoil anyway.

    I wish I could say I was sorry to piss on your eco-freak radio-active chips BiG but I’m not.

    This kind of bullshit propaganda has gone on for far too long as it is.

  33. Bloke in Costa Rica

    BIGIJ, you’re being very disingenuous with your remarks on hormesis. No-one is saying that if a little radiation is harmless then a lot must be be as well. They’re saying that if a lot is harmful, then a little is not necessarily as dangerous pro rata i.e. the Linear Dose No Threshold model is wrong. Is that true? Dunno. Would be surprised if it were not, otherwise we’d have keeled over from background radiation a few billion years earlier in our evolutionary history.

    This is of a piece with Chernobyl. The accident was thirty years ago. In that time about a third to two-fifths of the population of Europe has died. That’s hundreds of millions of people, and a hefty fraction of them will have died of cancer. To disentangle a few ten of thousands from that (let alone the hundreds that are more plausible) is simply impossible. Therefore, even if we know that there will be a certain degree of excess mortality from a nuclear accident, unless those deaths are frank and unmistakeable, then drawing policy prescriptions from this fact is going to be in error.

  34. What i’d like to know , is why nuclear plants have a ‘shelf life’ ? Why cant these things run for 50 years or more ? Yes hardware and facilities would have to be upgraded from time to time , but thats a fact of life for most energy projects , but surely cheaper than building a new one for circa £24 billion every 15-20 years or so.

  35. So Much For Subtlety

    Chuds – “What i’d like to know , is why nuclear plants have a ‘shelf life’ ? Why cant these things run for 50 years or more ?”

    Alvin Weinberg has a very good, very small bit, about this in his auto-biography-sort-of-thing The First Nuclear Era.

    There are some minor issues. One is most power reactors were designed for submarines. The Light Water Reactor got massive funding from the Navy before it became the most common type of power reactor. Those submarines were not big so the reactor had to be compact. Compact is not good in a reactor – it is more dangerous for one thing. It also means that the pressure vessel is exposed to neutrons and over time becomes embrittled.

    Weinberg says reactors ought to be like hydro-electric dams. Expensive to build, but they should last for decade if not centuries. So bigger pressure vessels for one thing. The point about hydro-electric dams is something like the Hoover dam, built in the Depression, has long since paid for itself. It cost a lot but those loans have been paid off or inflated away. Which means it provides cheap power each and every year.

  36. I spent far too long reading this particular paper. When I got to the part where they recommended 0 radioactive iodine in any food I knew I should have stopped but for some reason I continued with the punishment.

    Since we know that an iodine sample with have some of the radioactive isotope my take is that we need to remove this from any soil we grow crops in. I’ve never separated isotopes but I believe it involves lots of centrifuges. Does anyone here know how hard it would be to deradiate my garden? Would this step make food 1.000, 10,000, 100,000, or more times more expensive that current farming?

  37. Bloke in Costa Rica

    Iodine itself is monoisotopic (I127). Iodine 129 has a 15.7 million year halflife. The next longest is iodine 125, at 60 days. You get a lot of I125 in a reactor, but five years on it’s 10 parts in a trillion of the original quantity. All the other radioisotopes of iodine are long gone.

  38. Shouldn’t some I125 be created from atmospheric xenon?

    I’m not claiming that there is going to be a significant amount naturally but surely there should be some trace.

  39. Bloke in Germany in Hong Kong


    The data Tim has linked are detected and treated cancers, not those found by screening, or false positives from that process. The “excess of a hundred” cancers would be statistical noise were we talking about lung, bowel, or breast. We are talking about thyroid cancer in kids, against an expected baseline of about 5 cases, so it is huge.

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