U.S. scientists find lessons from Fukushima nuclear crisis

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  • 2

    Onniyama

    They can start by getting their facts straight. They were not partial meltdowns.

  • 5

    cabadaje

    It's unfortunate that our traditional method of learning (i.e. making mistakes and learning from them) doesn't lend itself too well to the new fields of technology we are dealing with.

  • -3

    Star-viking

    Good to see this.

    As for the meltdowns Onniyama - please, tell us the facts. With references too if you please.

  • -1

    BertieWooster

    cabadaje-san,

    It's unfortunate that our traditional method of learning (i.e. making mistakes and learning from them) doesn't lend itself too well to the new fields of technology we are dealing with.

    So true.

    It's pretty important to be alive at the end of the mistake in order to learn from the mistakes.

  • 4

    zichi

    Reactors 1-3 had more than 80% meltdowns and melt throughs, that according to TEPCO. We have already been down that road so many times on this forum.

  • 2

    Zen student

    Can somebody explain to me what they mean by 'safety CULTURE'????? Zichi maybe?

  • -2

    Newsman

    Well, it's nice to see that somebody is trying to learn ...

  • 6

    zichi

    Can somebody explain to me what they mean by 'safety CULTURE'?????

    I guess he would mean safety before profits coupled with a consciousness and awareness about safety at all the atomic power plants from the highest levels of the power companies, the Chairman and CEO and all the way down to even a cleaner working at one of the plants.

    That level of consciousness will only be possible if firstly, the power companies want it and start some program of training and education, and secondly, the companies create a working environment where its possible for people to come forward or whistle blow those situations which as engineers, technicians or operators feel safe in their jobs in revealing something which isn't up to required safety standards, or could even be improved.

    “We have to study safety culture, but frankly speaking at the moment we do not have enough resources, enough time, or enough personnel,”

    I think its of major concern, that he states the new safety agency does not have enough resources or personnel since it was suppose to absorb the workers from NISA. I can accept that the agency is under a great deal of pressure to come up with new safety standards and inspect all the atomic plants by next summer, because it has also stated that no further reactors will be restarted until that program is complete. Will these shortages lead to any corner cutting?

  • 3

    kurisupisu

    Firstly, the events at Fukushima were not a crisis but a disaster. The ongoing radiation leakage is moving ever onward and poisoning more and more of the earth. The escape of radiation on this scale is not able to be remedied. The solution lies outside our ability to construct. Instead of looking at the facts and coming to the conclusion that nuclear power is unmanageable the scientists have already concluded that it can be made safer.

    Initially, if something is inherently dangerous it can hardly be made safer can it?

  • 0

    nandakandamanda

    The 22 members of the National Academy of Sciences will be aware of how Sandy tested their own plants in the eastern US just recently.

    If any of them are bored and looking for more understanding they could spend many happy and useful hours reading the articles and comments here on JT !

  • -2

    Star-viking

    zichiNov. 28, 2012 - 05:06PM JST

    Reactors 1-3 had more than 80% meltdowns and melt throughs, that according to TEPCO. We have already been down that road so many times on this forum.

    And what constitutes a partial or total meltdown? Views will vary.

    And also, we have seen contradictory data on this forum, so such things are still open to discussion.

  • 0

    Ranger_Miffy2

    “We have to study safety culture, but frankly speaking at the moment we do not have enough resources, enough time, or enough personnel,”...oh, wow reassuring.

  • 2

    Star-viking

    Can somebody explain to me what they mean by 'safety CULTURE'?????

    Basically safety being the primary concern for an organisation. That means finding and tracking risks and hazards, calculating probabilities of occurrence and their severity, i.e. what can go wrong, how, how likely and how bad? It usually requires a dedicated independent safety department whose sole role is the promulgation, tracking and enforcement of safety in the company.

  • 2

    BertieWooster

    Nuclear power in a country with as many severe earthquakes as Japan is simply not a good idea.

    Read on:

    http://www.japanfocus.org/-David-McNeill/3849

  • 4

    zichi

    Star-viking

    According to most nuclear scientists, engineers etc more than 70% makes it a total meltdown.

    The nuclear power companies have safety depts which is a must but that in itself is not enough to ensure safety. You make a sign telling workers that its dangerous to climb up on cardboard boxes to change a light and need to use a ladder but unless they understand the real need for safety, and feel part of it, they'll still climb up on the cardboard boxes. I have worked in safety in the heavy chemical industry and also when I was in the navy and other times too.

  • 4

    zichi

    The safety standards at the atomic plants needs to be based on possibilities and not on probabilities.

  • 0

    globalwatcher

    U.S. scientists find lessons from Fukushima nuclear crisis

    And our city killed a new nuke plant project. We are already shifting to green energy.

  • 2

    Michael Mann

    From the US INPO definition of Safety Culture: An organization’s values and behaviors—modeled by its leaders and internalized by its members—that serve to make nuclear safety the overriding priority. http://www.nrc.gov/about-nrc/regulatory/enforcement/hro-sc-collins.pdf The Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) recognizes the importance of nuclear plant operators establishing and maintaining a strong safety culture -- a work environment where management and employees are dedicated to putting safety first. In a January 24, 1989 policy statement (Federal Register), the Commission described its expectations for such a safety culture and how it supports the agency’s mission to protect public health and safety. http://www.nrc.gov/about-nrc/regulatory/enforcement/safety-culture.html#background

  • 1

    Konsta

    He said the group is still in “an investigative stage” and the process will go on for a long time.

    They learn nothing. Trust me. These scientists are on sabbatical, spending governmental money, getting daily allowance, having sushi and good time in Japan. I wish I was there.

  • 0

    Kabukilover

    “We have to study safety culture, but frankly speaking at the moment we do not have enough resources, enough time, or enough personnel,” he said.

    Welcome to Japan's deki-nai culture. I've heard similar excuses before and what it really means is that deep down these people do not want to rock the boat. The nuclear industry is a tight group of business people and so-called experts who lied and lied about the true nature of the Fukushima disaster. Their circle includes construction companies who build nuclear reactors and academics who are basically ad men. A "safety culture" would put the incomes of the whole lot a risk.

    A true "safety culture" would honestly look at nuclear power as outdated and intrinsically dangerous.

  • 0

    globalwatcher

    Welcome to Japan's deki-nai culture.

    . This is the best described post about Japan today. America is a country of CAN DO attitude and culture. America does a big thing to move country forward to Green Energy while we have more oil reserve than Saudi. As we know it is the right thing to do for the next generations and we are willing to take risks.

    http://articles.latimes.com/2012/nov/13/business/la-fi-us-saudi-oil-20121113

    U.S. to become world's largest oil producer by 2020

  • 0

    nandakandamanda

    Kabukilover, I agreed with your whole post until the middle of the last line where your personal opinion kicked in.

    If you would allow me to rewrite it borrowing from Michael Mann two posts above yours:

    A true "safety culture" would honestly look at nuclear power ...and... make nuclear safety the overriding priority".

    Now the overriding priority might indeed end up meaning that these two - nuclear power and a seismically active archipelago - do not go together under any circumstances, but that is what the committee and the logic should decide.

  • 0

    Star-viking

    zichiNov. 28, 2012 - 09:46PM JST

    According to most nuclear scientists, engineers etc more than 70% makes it a total meltdown.

    Which at least suggests that it is not firmly defined. My 1995 dictionary of Science and Technology doesn't even have the terms "total meltdown" nor "partial meltdown", just "melt down".

    So I guess YMMV.

  • 0

    Star-viking

    zichiNov. 28, 2012 - 09:50PM JST

    The safety standards at the atomic plants needs to be based on possibilities and not on probabilities.

    And what does that mean? As an ex-Safety Engineer what I can say is you look at the possible ways a device or system can go wrong and how probable it is that the event is going to happen. You also factor in how severe the consequences are, so that improbable risks are covered.

  • 2

    zichi

    Star-viking,

    atomic power plants can't be consider like other plants and factories. The safety standards must be the highest level possible. Water tight reactor buildings, water tight electrical systems, emergency generators not located below sea level. A million other points which the new safety agency are probably now considering in the light of the Fukushima nuclear disaster which according to the Diet Commission and even TEPCO could have been avoided.

  • 0

    Star-viking

    I actually agree with you zichi, but as I pointed out - from a Safety Engineering perspective "based on possibilities and not on probabilities" seems meaningless.

  • 0

    zichi

    Star-viking,

    TEPCO has 50 trillion regrets it based its safety standards on probabilities instead of possibilities. Like I suggest to you, read the extensive investigation and report by Dr Kenichi Ohmae.

  • 0

    Star-viking

    I have looked at it, but as I was just trying to point out "probabilities instead of possibilities" is just a meaningless mantra unless accompanied by some explanations.

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