Saturday, March 19, 2011

Another Nuclear Reactor Facility at Onagawa has radiation levels 700 times over normal

This video describes clearly the issue that I touched on earlier in that the reactors are clustered in close proximity and can make it impossible to handle containing damage in related but independent reactors. The reality is that a perfectly operating/capable reactor may not be so perfectly operable or capable after people and maintenance resources are not able to reach the site. If there are other explosions or events that could further damage the capability to control the other reactors or handle related facility emergencies.

Again, reports like this are NOT on the US or Japan's media.

Here is another article worth reading quoting Masashi Goto: Nuclear Scientist Recycled Fuel Containing Plutonium at Fukushima Plant Increases Meltdown Stakes
Nuclear Plant Designer Masashi Goto Says Japanese Government Suppressing Scale Of Crisis

A former nuclear power plant designer has said Japan is facing an extremely grave crisis and called on the government to release more information, which he said was being suppressed. Masashi Goto told a news conference in Tokyo that one of the reactors at the Fukushima-Daiichi plant was “highly unstable”, and that if there was a meltdown the “consequences would be tremendous”. He said such an event might be very likely indeed. So far, the government has said a meltdown would not lead to a sizeable leak of radioactive materials.

Mr Goto said the reactors at the Fukushima-Daiichi nuclear plant were suffering pressure build-ups way beyond that for which they were designed. There was a severe risk of an explosion, with radioactive material being strewn over a very wide area – beyond the 20km evacuation zone set up by the authorities – he added. Mr Goto calculated that because Reactor No 3 at Fukushima-Daiichi – where pressure is rising and there is a risk of an explosion – used a type of fuel known as Mox, a mixture of plutonium oxide and uranium oxide, the radioactive fallout from any meltdown might be twice as bad.

He described the worst-case scenario: “It is difficult to say, but that would be a core meltdown. If the rods fall and mix with water, the result would be an explosion of solid material like a volcano spreading radioactive material. Steam or a hydrogen explosion caused by the mix would spread radioactive waste more than 50km. Also, this would be multiplied. There are many reactors in the area so there would be many Chernobyls.”

He accused the government of deliberately withholding vital information that would allow outside experts help solve the problems. “For example, there has not been enough information about the hydrogen being vented. We don’t know how much was vented and how radioactive it was.” He also described the use of sea water to cool the cores of the reactors at Fukushima-Daiichi as highly unusual and dangerous

Streaming Live Radiation Monitoring from West LA

Click play on this video object below to view live radiation readings in California. Normal background radiation can range from 5 CPM to 60 CPM – anything above 100 should raise an alarm

from Reuters:

History tells us that government have habitually lied about radiation, air quality and the true scope of health threats to the American people. Only through the use of private monitoring stations will we be able to confidently gauge the true levels of radiation hitting the west coast, and we won’t know the full extent of the danger Americans face until Monday at the earliest.

Suggesting that levels of radiation leaks from the stricken Fukushima plant are being grossly underreported by Japanese authorities, a Swedish government agency told Reuters yesterday that not only will the radiation reach North America, but it will subsequently cover the entire northern hemisphere.

De Geer said he was “convinced it would eventually be detected over the whole northern hemisphere,” according to the report, adding that radioactive particles would “eventually also come here,” referring to Europe.

The Swedes can be trusted to know a thing or two about detecting radiation. While the Soviets were furiously engaged in a cover-up of the Chernobyl disaster which occurred on April 26 1986, Swedish workers at the Forsmark Nuclear Power Plant were the first ones to detect the fallout from the accident two days later on April 28

And now Syria...

My Saudi Chart that I have previously posted is starting to look rather realistic.

and some very violent activity in Bahrain...This will not help the Government in their campaign to qwash protests. It will inflame them. Bahrain will be next to fall.

For some perspective on Fukushima...

For some perspective, it would be nice for the many people who keep reiterating "Fukushima is no Chernobyl" to be affirmed. Indeed Fukushima is no Chernobyl in many respects. Lets examine fuel, based on a report from last year by Science Insider, Fukushima has nearly 10 times more nuclear fuel than Chernobyl:
The Daiichi complex in Fukushima, Japan ... had a total of 1760 metric tons of fresh and used nuclear fuel on site last year, according to a presentation by its owners, the Tokyo Electric Power Company (Tepco). The most damaged Daiichi reactor, number 3, contains about 90 tons of fuel, and the storage pool above reactor 4, which the Nuclear Regulatory Commission's (NRC's) Gregory Jaczko reported yesterday had lost its cooling water, contains 135 tons of spent fuel. The amount of fuel lost in the core melt at Three Mile Island in 1979 was about 30 tons; the Chernobyl reactors had about 180 tons when the accident occurred in 1986. - from Science Insider
According to more recent reports, the spent fuel pool - at reactor 4 alone, which has lost all of its water and thus is risking complete release of its radioactive material - has 75% as much nuclear fuel as at all of Chernobyl. However, as if those numbers are not enough, others numbers are even worse because Tepco recently transferred many more radioactive spent fuel rods into the storage pools. According to Associated Press 3,400 tons of fuel were last recorded being stored in seven spent fuel pools and 877 tons of active fuel were recorded in the cores of the reactors.

The grand totals are grim: well over 4,200 tons of spent and live nuclear fuel at Fukushima - in round numbers that's 25 times more fuel than at Chernobyl.

There is another issue as well, all the plants are relatively close together and if reactor 4 goes critical, risk for the other reactors and storage pools also increases dramatically. Moreover, if reactor 4 melts down completely and/or has a catastrophic explosion worse than it already has had, then it will be impossible to get human attention to the other reactors in a timely manner or to keep the "mosquito attacking a dragon" type activities currently being employed as defensive tactics by Japanese overseers going.

There are indeed a lot of fabrications going on regarding the risks at Fukushima. This is a simple presentation of facts of the amount of fuel at the facility to help put them into perspective... 

(BTW  Denninger's is most likely going to be taken off my blog list for his absolutely irresponsible and arrogant and ridiculous reporting regarding Fukushima and blatant use of controversy and theatrics to generate traffic and attention. Perhaps theatrics have been the main objective underscoring the activity on that blog all along...)

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Blogs, Positions and Opinions...

I have to tell you that while I have a lot of respect for many bloggers that have done the service of providing real and valuable reporting and analysis to the world. I am seeing people doing something that they should not right now - taking a stand simply for the record. The biggest offender that I see is Karl Denninger. I have a link to his blog on my blog list as he usually provides lively debate on many subjects and has consistently done a good job of getting to the meat of the matter. However, Denninger, whom I thought was an expert in internet and web related technologies is now an apparent expert in nuclear physics if I read between the lines in his posts. I think that his posts talking down the niclear risks in Japan represent an ill-advised approach and irresponsible jounalisim, if you want to call it that. While I think it is good to be pragmatic and attempt to be objective about large scale problems, I would certainly prefer to encourage people to be more prepared rather than less and I said as much in post The World Never Changes...

The reality as I see it is rather simple. There are over 90 tons of live fuel in the active reactors and many more tons of spent fuel which is supposedly more dangerous than the live fuel. Each reactor and spent fuel facility is within relatively close proximity of each other. The methods being used to attempt to contain the situation appear to become more and more desperate each day and seem unlikely of doing much to resolve the continuing issues. Moreover, they will have to figure out how to deal with the damage to the vessels, leaks and structures all the while manually keeping the all the fuel rods submerged with water for the next number of years (perhaps hundreds)...this seems like a situation frought with danger and one in which a single mistake may cause a catastophic situation which makes it impossible to get human resources to the site...Denninger and others keep saying this is no Chernobyl. I think they are not experts and even experts are not saying that unilaterally. The reality is the situation is out of control and the amount of nuclear fuel is so much more than Chernobyl and that it is entirely reasonable to prepare for the fact that the results can be of significant impact or worse than officials are suggesting. I certainly hope not, but from where I stand I prefer to acknowledge I am not an expert and that the experts clearly seem to be resorting to non-expert methods so the odds of something surprising negatively are very very high. I HOPE TO GOD that we get some positive surprises and that Denninger is right...but nonetheless, if one has an opinon about something, I think a blog is a fine place for it...however, I think credibility is important too and we should, as a blogging community, not exceed our personal knowledge and skills to drive traffic or get attention. There are still standards and I am seeing alot of them broken down during this tragedy. has been a terrific resource on the Japan situation and encourage anyone to use them as a resource.

I think I will believe every word that the officials say...

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

An update on Oil

Oil continues in its bear market. Here is an inverted chart of Oil that looks rather similar to the Saudi chart and points to any further spike in oil prices as an extremely good selling opportunity.

Society and itself...

This has been an interesting cycle to watch. Certainly, the lives lost and tragic situation playing out in Japan is due our most solemn thought and prayers. One of the things that I have learned is that we are only truly at war with ourselves and when we can make peace with ourselves as individuals unto ourselves many impossible things are possible. In that the markets are a reflection of that singular relationship. Our biggest enemy is indeed ourselves. But if we extrapolate that further we find that this condition occurs for many, many, many market participants, and they in turn reflect and impart collective values, collective wisdom, collective beliefs into the visible manifestation of prices. I believe that prices represent much more than just a simple price. They represent the values of an entire society or the entire globe as the case may be. I stated in the video interview that I did with Douglass Lodmell that "money is a symbol and a representation of the society it serves". If that society is dysfunctional, its money is likely to be as well. If that society is basing actions on core values and productive pursuits, its money will be required to represent them. As a society we participate in group think and its almost impossible to extract ourselves from it. That is why trading is such a battle with oneself to avoid group think. Its also why it represents the state of the collective consciousness.

Lets look at this a little bit further. Many things that occur in nature (of which we are a part) are painful but rejuvenating. A wildfire may create challenges or great struggle, but it will inevitably leave a foundation for more than it destroyed - further evolution. However, the human animal is a different thing altogether, our fears and greed, our predisposition for fight or flight and our need for dominance - though attributes in many species - are tools we use for self-deception, self-destrcution and self-aggrandizement. Call them behavioral and motivational weaknesses. These are not things that occur in nature on their own in other species.

When we focus on limited pursuits and essential values, we generally produce overwhelmingly healthy potential and opportunity. When we focus on superficial, trivial and deceptive pursuits we use our predispositions and behavioral and motivational weaknesses to qualify why what we are doing is of  higher order, better than the simple and limited pursuits. We qualify why we think we have more sophisticated values than the simpleton people and societies whose focus was more basic, limited and essential. I have to stress that one of the things that I have learned is that I always produce more with less and almost always produce less with more. The more opportunity I have the less I do with it, however, the less I have the better I develop what little I do have. As a society we have created abstract realities and consciousness's whereby people feel entitled, they feel like struggle is a thing from the past that we should not need to do - yet they wonder why they feel like they are struggling. As a society, we need money that can also act in this way - eliminating the need to struggle for it - so we create debt. This is a reflection of the social consciousness and leads to bad psychology and unhealthy and unproductive decision making. Debt is inherently narcissistic and usually part of a short cut we think can reduce our need for struggle - the result is that our money systems reflect these traits. What is ironic, is that when ever one amuses themselves with new paradigms qualified by our behavioral and motivational weaknesses the shortcut becomes the long cut and the basic becomes the complex.

Moreover, what we can see that when a group of people start embodying these characteristics, group think takes over and spreads to others who then become similarly challenged. For these reasons there are times that a tragedy is a catastrophe and other times when it is an opportunity and a rebirth for us. When we value idle gods and celebrate our shortcuts and especially when we exemplify that behavior through our mediums of exchange - money. We get Bernanke. We get Barrack Obama's change we can't believe in that is something worse than and less than change. We get Tim Geithner and Lloyd Blankfein doing "God's work". We get bad decision making at nuclear power plants in Japan. We literally get bankrupt values and souls that are no longer able to facilitate the creation of opportunity out of adversity as we are seeing in the middle east and in Japan. The reserve of inner metal, quiet confidence and determination have been beaten into submission by our fears and greed, our predisposition for fight or flight and our need for dominance or to be dominated...there is nothing left to struggle with. There is no fuel. As a society unless we recognise that our core values and our lives have a real value we will continue to allow those values to be corrupted and distorted into sick, unhealthy and contagious mange that spreads without resistance. If we were to look at a strong Japan with healthy values and healthy methods for representing those values, a tsunami would certainly be a terrible terrible thing, but it would be a limitation and challenge provided by nature that would steel the drive to overcome and become. Japan would grow. But that is not the case, as a foundation, Japan does not have money that represents value, it has money that represents destruction of value. It is very difficult indeed to compete with destruction when it comes from within and more importantly when we allow and abet it. The result is that this effects the strength and capability of everyone in a society from the president to the constituents he serves, to the guy monitoring and designing the Nuclear power plant. This is the struggle of the ages - coming to grips with true values and then finding a way to transmit value in a productive and powerful way...

I can assure you that the Fed, Central Banking debt money system has contributed to the chaos in the US and Japan much more that the earthquake or the tsunami. It has changed motivations and our inner happiness. It has changed our connection to and understanding of the truth. A society that transmits its value and productivity with debt and deception is a sick one without a relationship to truth and one that will ultimately resort to debasement of its values and its capability.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Another look at the Saudi markets...

If the Nikkei may have issues for trading on Monday, they are slated to open but still may not. If that were to be the case, I would expect investors trapped in the Nikkei to protect themselves by selling US and European markets...this would also effect the Saudi Markets in addition to risk related to protests.

Is it impulsive? and does it blend?

Volatility Channel Setup

In these cases the middle of the channel is resistance...

The VIX - standing at attention...

Perhaps the Banks will be a motivator for fear and help pop the VIX...looks kinda like it...

The world never changes...

This morning the roof blew off and cooling system exploded for the reactor number 1 in Japan and CNN and New York Times published headlines saying "radioactivity levels have declined". The New York Times posted it in the biggest front page headlines I have have seen for the newspaper. (I was on the road otherwise I would have taken a screenshot of it) Clearly, if you explode concentrated material it becomes less concentrated and topical measurements would show lower measurements...but I guess this stuff is like the NFP, Initial Claims, CPI and many other government reports...spin, spin, spin...the sad part is that they have delayed people from preparing...This is a classic case where "over preparing" is way to your advantage over trusting the idiot who tells you "This is no chernobyl".., what's more its possible that it could be worse than chernobyl when all the nuclear damage is reviewed? Nobody should say otherwise because they do not have the basis to absolutely do so. There is simply no definitive way or reason to rule anything out, being prepared is much better than being unprepared. The reality is, when I saw the explosion, it demonstrated that most of the news that was coming out was likely suspect and things would likey be much worse than represented.
Japan’s Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency (NISA) said March 12 that the explosion at the Fukushima Daiichi No. 1 nuclear plant could only have been caused by a meltdown of the reactor core, Japanese daily Nikkei reported. This statement seemed somewhat at odds with Japanese Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano’s comments earlier March 12, in which he said “the walls of the building containing the reactor were destroyed, meaning that the metal container encasing the reactor did not explode.” full article
Well, now that we are officially having a series of Meltdown's that may endup being significantly worse than Chernobyl according to the info below, I guess its time to prepare. Not that ANYONE has boached the subject on mainstream TV. I hope that it is not likely and that the construction and damage control for the Japanese reactors is indeed not capable of a similar problem as chernobyl. It certainly is strange when you have to go to or aljazeera to get some sort of a credible update. In any case, "if" and I hope it is an "if" (though I fear the worst and that the Meltdowns and radiation releases have already occured though they have not been reported. In fact German newspapers are already reporting this to be true at the time of this post) this thing results in some sort of catastrophic radiation release, the material WILL make to the United States. First landing on the west coast. Keep in mind that I would imagine that the actual exposure would not be extreme for us in the US but exposure is exposure and the question is still there: "how much?" and "how long?". Unknowns are unknowns and as with trading its a really big deal to prepare, despite the probabilities of things not being as extreme as the most pessimistic outcome.

As I have personal connection with the results minor amounts of radiation exposure from chernobyl via family exposed in Germany and the resulting thyroid issues an ounce of prevention or preparedness seems very well worth it to me.

Here is some information regarding that...

If they can’t restore power to the plant (and cool the reactor), then there’s the possibility of some sort of core meltdown”. An alarming statement made by James Acton, a physicist who examined Japan’s Kashiwazaki nuclear plant after a 2007 earthquake, who told CNN that Japanese authorities are in race to cool down the Fukushima reactor.
Following the fifth largest earthquake in recorded world history, a magnitude 8.9 earthquake, has resulted in the closure of all Japan’s nuclear power reactors, one of which, the Fukushima reactor, is overheating and in danger of a meltdown if coolant is not restored soon. It’s like a pressure cooker… when you have something generating heat and you don’t cool it off or release the steam…
Reported from abc NEWS, Scientists said that even though the reactor had stopped producing energy, its fuel continues to generate heat and needs steady levels of coolant to prevent it from overheating and triggering a dangerous cascade of events.
They go on to say, “Up to 100 percent of the volatile radioactive Cesium-137 content of the pools could go up in flames and smoke, to blow downwind over large distances,”
“Given the large quantity of irradiated nuclear fuel in the pool, the radioactivity release could be worse than the Chernobyl nuclear reactor catastrophe of 25 years ago.” said Kevin Kamps, a nuclear waste specialist.
Fukushima I (there are two plant locations) is one of the 25 largest nuclear power stations in the world.

How would a nuclear plant meltdown unfold?
  • Control rods are driven back down into the core upon emergency (if rods don’t make it all the way… trouble)
  • The coolant (water) could cease if backup systems fail (electricity, pumps, generators, batteries)
  • Reactor continues to produce heat
  • Numerous venting valve systems would release pressure above ~1,000 psi into containment vessel
  • Eventually the uranium fuel encasement metal will melt (2,200 deg F)
  • Radioactive contamination then released into the reactor vessel
  • Radiation escapes into an outer, concrete containment building
  • Radiation escapes into the environment.
Why would the west coast USA be in danger?
Not only would such a disaster be horrible for the local region and Japan, but other countries, namely the U.S. would be effected next by airborne radiation particles, the magnitude of which is yet to be determined.
The prevailing jet stream winds are blowing from Japan directly across the Pacific ocean to the west coast of the United States. Any airborne radiation would make its way across with the jet stream, reaching the U.S. in approximately 36 hours, depending on the actual speed of the jet
Image of the Jet Stream from Japan to the U.S.

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