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Hyperventilating in the wake of Fukushima

“I’m hyperventilating,” I wrote. “Enjoy it while you can.  If that core burns, the air won’t be breathable,” Harvey wrote back. 

I asked Harvey Wasserman earlier this week about his recent article with information about the reactor core of Fukushima Unit 4 sitting 100 feet in the air.

As a rank-and-file clam the 1977 occupation at the site of the proposed nuclear plant at Seabrook I have a basic comprehension about the dangers of nuclear power and I didn’t understand how a reactor core could be on top of this damaged reactor.  I hadn’t read anything about it before. 

When the explosions happened in Japan on the heels of the earthquake and tsunami I emailed my peace group saying it looked like multiple meltdowns.  This assessment turned out to be correct.  I’ve been following the disaster very closely ever since. 

What we know two years later is:

  • THREE of four highly radioactive reactor cores are MISSING

  • Millions of tons of radioactive water are flowing through the nuclear site into the Pacific Ocean

  • Unit Four is badly damaged from the earthquake and tsunami, any earthquake of 6.0 or greater magnitude in the area can cause the building to collapse, there was a 5.3 magnitude earthquake on Thursday, September 19, 2013

  • THE REACTOR CORE FROM UNIT 4 IS ON THE ROOF!  The reactor core was moved up there for maintenance prior to the earthquake. 

If or better – when – this building collapses, if the reactor core burns, 20,000 times the radiation of the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima will be released. 

This is in addition to the highly radioactive spent fuel rods that dangerously sit on top of all these reactors without containment (and at all reactors of the same design, here in the U.S. and around the world). 

As comprehension sank in, I had trouble catching my breath. 

Neither governments nor corporations can get a handle on this catastrophe. 

Nuclear politics is the most deeply revealing of all contentious issues. 

Since the first use of atomic weapons by the U.S., a fog of denial has shrouded the lethal nature of nuclear technology. 

Nuclear weapons and nuclear power show us, like no other technology, how expendable people are in the eyes of those who presume to rule. 

Whether the people who populate these structures of power tell themselves they will somehow outrun radioactive consequences, or don’t care because ultimately these people hate life on earth, doesn’t matter.  What does matter is what people do in the face of this catastrophe.

You can read Harvey’s latest post on the crisis here

There is a petition in circulation that you can sign here.

Break through the fog of denial because the nightmare at Fukushima is an unparalleled emergency for humanity. 

This is the nightmare that I hoped to prevent when I joined the “grand occupation” at Seabrook all those years ago. 

 

 

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