Nuclear Meltdown

Apparently, highly radioactive beef from cows that lived near the Fukushima accident site is unknowingly being served up as burgers at Tokyo eateries, AFP reports: Radiation fears mounted in Japan on Wednesday…

Fukushima, Japan – The Japanese government issued an evacuation order on March 12 for residents living within the 20 kilometer radius of the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant.

Since then, residents have left their homes, and the “no man land” has been out of touch with the rest of the world. A Japanese journalist, Tetsuo Jimbo, ventured through the evacuation zone last Sunday, and filed the following video report.

He says that inside the evacuation zone, homes, buildings, roads and bridges, which were torn down by the tsunami, are left completely untouched, and the herd of cattle and pet dogs, left behind by the owners, wanders around the town while the radiation level remains far beyond legal limits.

A gripping, short documentary video of the horrifying challenge confronting the Soviet Union’s “biorobots” — soldiers, scientists, and civilians who were tasked with the emergency cleanup following the explosions at Chernobyl. Radio-controlled robotic machines were used at first, but their circuitry broke down from the radiation, leaving humans with shovels as the only option.

3596889720_f52826d665_zIs this list a case of fear-mongering? Possibly, but I would want to be aware if I lived nearby one of these wildcards. The Daily Beast presents a ranking of our nation’s most ripe-for-disaster nuclear reactors, as determined by a panel of experts, with Indian Point (Buchanan, NY), San Onofre ( San Clemente, CA), and Limerick, PA rounding out the top three:

1. Indian Point

Location: Buchanan, NY (24 miles north of New York City)
Reactors: 2
Electrical Output (megawatts): Unit 2: 1020; Unit 3: 1025
Year Operating License Issued: Unit 2: 1973; Unit 3: 1975
Population within 50 Miles: 17,452,585
Relative Safety Rating: bottom third

Blake Ellis reports for CNN:

A devastating earthquake strikes Japan. A massive tsunami kills thousands. Fears of a nuclear meltdown run rampant. Bloodshed and violence escalate in Libya.

And U.S. companies selling doomsday bunkers are seeing sales skyrocket anywhere from 20% to 1,000%…

For those of you who haven’t already seen this video, currently making the rounds of weirdness aggregation sites everywhere, here’s the Japanese cartoon that explains the Fukushima nuclear reactor crisis to children. Apparently Kazuhiko Hachiya’s “Nuclear Boy” is actually playing on national TV in Japan.