Noda says Fukushima reactors have reached state of cold shutdown

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  • 5

    SquidBert

    In other words,

    We are running out of time, so lets just declare what we have now as a 'cold shutdown'. Then we all can celebrate new years with no worries.

  • 10

    zichi

    I could write a long list why there can't be a "cold shutdown" and an even longer list why the atomic plant can't be considered stable for decades to come.

    It remains the most serious nuclear disaster since Chernobyl. It remains a Level 7, the highest number, nuclear disaster. I haven't read anything about the IAEA reducing that level.

    Radiation is leaking into the atmosphere and more seriously into the ocean.

    The government is thinking of lifting the exclusion zone 6 km around the Fukushima II power plant, probably so they can restart it.

  • 10

    tokyokawasaki

    Until it is independently verified by non-Japanese nuclear agencies, I for one will not be a gullible sheep and believe the BS coming out of TEPCO or the government.

  • 2

    goinggoinggone

    It will all be diplomatic bollocks and happy-speak, so why bother?

  • 2

    Elvensilvan

    Friday at 6 PM huh? Sounds like a perfect time for a nomikai right after!

    It's already a big mess and costing a lot of money. Rushing the declaration won't change anything. Unless, of course, TEPCO and the Japanese government wants the international community to look at their jobs too closely.

    But that's just what will happen if there are still doubts. It won't matter who makes the declaration ... TEPCO or Noda, or even the emperor.

  • 3

    gogogo

    Cold shutdown doesn't mean anything when 3 of your plants have already exploded.

  • 0

    gogogo

  • 5

    smithinjapan

    This is one of the worst examples of simply declaring something is done and trying to score political points when it's not even close to reaching the declared goals. Just the other day they were ready to declare the plant 'stable' while pointing out it's not under control, could suffer major damage from another quake and/or tsunami, is still leaking radiation, will take some 30 years to clean up, etc.

    Anyone who actually believes they've achieved shut down and the plant is stable is, literally, a complete moron. Fortunately this will likely come back to bite Noda in the behind (when it's revealed there is another major leak or what have you next year).

    "Mission Accomplished" indeed.

  • 2

    Disillusioned

    the nuclear emergency has recorded no direct casualties,

    Yet! We'll have to wait ten to twenty years before the people of Fukushima start dropping like flies.

  • 1

    Laguna

    Wow! This, and the end of the Iraq war on consecutive days! I guess that means everything is back to the way it was before...doesn't it?

  • 2

    thepro

    Ridiculous

  • 1

    Charles M Burns

    Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda will hold a news conference from 6 p.m. Friday, with local media saying he will proclaim the cold shutdown of the crippled Fukushima nuclear plant.

    Okay, I declare Tim Tebow as the second coming... Doesn't mean a thing... Gotta tie up all loose ends by 31 Dec. Might as well announce that the economy has recovered too.

  • -5

    Rick Kisa

    Have the temperatures been controlled downwards for the last 4 months? YES! Has the likeage of radio active material been controlled downwards for the last 3 months? YES! Is the public anxious to know the progress at the Daiichi plant? OF COURSE YES! Then the government has a duty to inform the populace about this important development, albeit, with caution. The press statemnent should be carefully worded to avoid unneccessarily raising expectations they cannot meet as of now. Definitely the Fukushima incident is a very huge challenge and it is quite scaring to say they do not know for sure the exact condition in the reactor n melting rods. Dont forget to include in the press statement issues related to the likeage of radioactive material in the terrestrial and aquatic food chain, which is now the major concern worldwide. And please, please, please halt your proposals to tell people to go back near Fukushima to start farming. That would be careless! WHO SHOULD DELIVER THE SPEECH? I have noted TEPCO officials shouting loudest on the achivement, but the situation is such that they should be observers at the press conference and only to respond/react if asked. For authenticity and trust, it is better the messages are delivered by an independent regulatory body as TEPCO is yet to get confidence from the people. i think Sawada from the at0mic energy seems to talking much scientific sense, with his precautionary principled statements. yes, Noda may chair the session but people are tired of government statements. some independent body should do the real announcement

  • 2

    smithinjapan

    ”the nuclear emergency has recorded no direct casualties,”

    Not true. One man died on the job. I believe it was a heart attack, no? True, he didn't die of radiation sickness or the reactors exploding, but he DID die working there -- AS A RESULT OF THE NUCLEAR EMERGENCY.

  • 3

    JapanGal

    “Decommissioning for them is to wrap up the accident. This will take 40 years or so. They may not even be able to take out the fuel and could have to cement the whole thing down.”

    This is believable as this is the country that has mastered cementing over everything. That is why there is no grass, or naturally flowing rivers.

    They should change the flag to a have a big giant Cement Truck on it.

  • 3

    badmigraine

    I have the impression that the amount of radioactive material swept into the ocean from rain runoff dwarfs the radioactivity leaking into the ocean from the water-cooling efforts at the plants.

  • 1

    SushiSake3

    According to a report I read only yesterday, the temperature inside the reactors is not now consistantly above boiling point.

  • 3

    genji17

    If this was a poker game, I would CALL

  • 3

    Utrack

    Is JGovt and TEPCO walking around in a Fantasy Coma or what. Don't they know Daiichi is like a continuous powder keg? Heck I'm just checking in everyday to see when act 2 is going to begin because act 1 is being handled very badly by those in power. This is like with the contaminated foodstuff, first it was safe and then not safe and then it was safe again by simply raising the acceptable levels of contamination deemed to be no immediate threat to human health. It's all just talk talk talk.

  • 2

    Disillusioned

    Glad they changed the headline to state it is only the reactors that are stable cos the plant is far from being under control.

  • 3

    zichi

    Sounds something like Bush when he declared the war had been won!

  • 1

    Charles M Burns

    Gosh, I feel such relief. I'm going to go out and buy all Fukushima products, especially rice as everything is now safe. I wouldn't have known everything was safe unless a Prime Minister, who undoubtedly will only be in office one year, told me so. Alice in Wonderland comes to mind...

  • 3

    JapanGal

    1 trillion for decontamination was quoted just now on NHK.

    The translations are a mess though, but they try hard.

  • 2

    655321

    Total BS. And even the J-population should be able to call this a mile away. Seriously. Who do they think they're fooling?

  • 1

    delrennich

    more lies from Big Brother.

  • 3

    onodera takayuki

    Liars

  • 3

    billyshears

    <http://www.nytimes.com/2011/12/15/world/asia/japan-set-to-declare-control-over-damaged-nuclear-reactors.html?src=recg > Kyushu University’s Mr. Kudo said that the restart of fission, a phenomenon known as recriticality, could not be ruled out until the reactors could be opened, allowing for an examination of the melted fuel. But he and other experts said their biggest fear was that another earthquake or tsunami could knock out Tepco’s makeshift cooling system. They noted that it was not built to earthquake safety standards, and relied on water purifiers and other vulnerable equipment connected to the reactors by more than a mile and a half of rubber hoses.

    “All it would take is one more earthquake or tsunami to set Fukushima Daiichi back to square one,” Mr. Kudo said. “Can we really call this precarious situation a cold shutdown?”

  • 0

    gyouza

    Agree that an explanation from an expert would help, but would people really believe anybody?

  • 2

    Justina_Japan

    Sounds like wishful thinking to me.

  • 1

    Charles M Burns

    I guess you can fool some of the people some of the time....

  • 3

    gogogo

    Cold shutdown is only relivent if your plants are not blown up.

  • 1

    moomoochoo

    and pigs might fly!!!!!!

  • 1

    Ven Carolyn Ilagan

    I think this is political speech saying "The govt has achieved a technically stable condition and as such is no longer responsible for what happens next, ie, the polluted oceans, the contaminated dairy, the radiactive beef, the poisonous vegetables and the unedible fisheries are now somebody else's problems"..... just like when Tepco said that Cesium in private backyards are no longer their concern!!!

  • 0

    Cricky

    Stupidity on soooo many levels....what moron thought this one up But locals seem happy??????

  • 4

    warnerbro

    Rick Kisa, the temperatures are down because the melted fuel has all leaked out of the reactors. No fuel, no heat, no heat, cool. The barn is indeed quiet because the horse has already bolted, as it were. So declaring the barn quiet is hardly a reason to feel relieved. In fact, it evinces that the problem is far more difficult than TEPCO or the government have yet admitted. They recently declared that it won't take 30 years to get control of the melted fuel, but 40. If we look at the record thus far, we should be safe to double or triple that. I would bet that nobody alive today will see the end of this disaster. TEPCO says it might still be contained in concrete 30 some centimetres from the final steel barrier. Well, they think it is, or they hope it is, or they wish it would be, but they haven't any better idea than any of us really. Some scientists say it might well be in the ground by now. Radioactive water is leaking out continually. If they don't put enough in, the ground water leaks in, if they put too much, the radioactive water leaks out. Another earthquake or idiot could easily break their cooling and decontamination circuit. This announcement is complete, utter, unadulterated nonsense.

  • -2

    globalwatcher

    A cold shutdown normally means a nuclear reactor’s coolant system is at atmospheric pressure and its reactor core is at a temperature below 212 degrees Fahrenheit (100 degrees Celsius), making it impossible for a chain reaction to take place.

    According to TEPCO, temperature gauges inside the Fukushima reactors show the pressure vessel is at around 70 C (158 F). The government also says the amount of radiation now being released around the plant is at or below 1 millisievert per year

    Congratulatons! Significant accomplishment. Job well done, Japan.

  • -1

    herefornow

    Declaring Japan has turned a corner in the battle to stabilize its tsunami-damaged nuclear plant,

    Like others I have been highly critical of TEPCO's and the J-government's handling of this crisis for the past nine months. And that lack of faith in them, and Japan's ability to turn things around, ultimately made me conclude that leaving Japan was the best option for me. But, I do hope that the sentiment expressed in this quote is real, and sign off by wishing Japan a Happy New Year holiday and prosperous and safe 2012.

  • 2

    Fadamor

    As I mentioned in comments on the other article about this, until they get temperature monitors at the site of the corium (the melted slag of the fuel rods), they can't really declare a cold shutdown. They're just guessing based on temperatures elsewhere in the reactor. This was a political decision and nothing based on science.

  • 2

    YongYang

    It is not a cold shut down. That requires reactors to be in a state of 'construct', not a state of 'unknown', which the reactors are, they do NOT know where the corium masses are... NO cold shut down.

  • 1

    alladin

    More lies being told to the public hoping that everyone will bite what was said. Noda is just another politician trying to save his image. The reactors is still in a critical state if you ask me. Until the Japanese government can shut the whole thing down and get the temperature to drop to below 100 degrees Fahrenheit there is still a problem that exists.

  • 1

    smithinjapan

    But what’s most important right now is that there aren’t any massive radiation leaks any more,” he said.

    Ummm... excuse me? How much was it that leaked into the Pacific again earlier this week?

  • 1

    Fadamor

    Alladin, a cold shutdown requires water temperatures below 100 CELSIUS, not Fahrenheit, at normal atmospheric pressure . In other words, if all pressure containment is lost and cooling flow is lost, the existing water will not boil away and expose the rods to the air. Even SPENT fuel rods can get hotter than 100 degrees Fahrenheit depending on how old they are.

  • -2

    nigelboy

    Ummm... excuse me? How much was it that leaked into the Pacific again earlier this week?

    150 liters.

    "Massive" indeed.

  • 3

    LB315

    Japan has really gone off the deep end. Denial at its finest. Speechless...

  • 2

    Blair Herron

    Since May, Koide has been saying that melted fuel has gone through containers and is on concrete foundations sinking into ground below. Underground dam has to be built right away. Or it will go down to the underground water, and eventually it will go out to the ocean. (maybe already has) TEPCO is resisting because it costs 100 billion yen. (also it is extremely dangerous job)

  • 0

    waltery

    Its a step in the right direction in a long road. Fact is this mile stone is worthy of promotion.

  • 1

    whiskeysour

    I know in Japan, it is customary to sweep things under the rug before New Year and start fresh. But this is crazy. People can't return back unless the want cancer or die. This was worse than Chernobyl.

  • 0

    Charles M Burns

    Smoke and mirrors

  • 0

    buggerlugs

    Mr noda, I think you're lying.

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