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8.9 Earthqauke in Japan: Huge Tsunami hits land

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Old
03-14-2011, 10:40 AM
  #101
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It would be a serious environmental issue, but not really a catastrophe. There wouldn't be severe risk for major health concerns, perhaps some cancer cases with those directly involved depending on their methods and safety precautions, but overall nothing devastating, that and meltdown is still highly unlikely. Japan, unlike the U.S., has modern reactors, which are pretty safe, it isn't an ideal place to put a reactor, but it is not like they can move Japan, and reactors require water...



Overall, they are well maintained, and very modern, they will have systems/generators back online in time to avoid meltdown, and leaks will not jeopardize the plant's future.



That's normal, though awesome. If it weren't for such activity, we would not exist The axis is constantly shifting due to it's natural precession anyways.





Probably the worst side effect, not counting any cancer related incidents moving forward in the future, would be the second guessing this will give nuclear and anti-nuclear supporters moving forward here in the future within the U.S. Our reactors are ancient compared to just about any other nation and date back to the 70's. We desperately need to modernize our nuclear energy to catch up to the world, and more importantly, to keep us safe. Our reactors aren't in much danger, but it would be a lot more safer if we modernized and were more responsible to ensure that such an accident cannot occur again. In fearfully trying to keep us safe, legislation is making us more vulnerable. This will only further delay the inevitable need to modernize.
Telos, not sure what your background is and it's very likely you know a lot more about this than me, but.....from what I am seeing they are in a last-ditch effort to save these reactors from melting down by pumping in seawater. The seriousness of the issue in underlined by the fact that they've made that decision knowing full well that once they do that, the reactor is *********d and will have to be abandoned.

Also, weren't these reactors also built in the 70's? Like, 1970?

It seems to me the issue here is not one of modernity, but of the design of the back up generation and cooling systems. Those diesel generators should have been installed in such a way to prevent them being taken out by a Tsunami. If the reactors survived the Tsunami, then their support systems should have, too.

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03-14-2011, 10:55 AM
  #102
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Those diesel generators should have been installed in such a way to prevent them being taken out by a Tsunami. If the reactors survived the Tsunami, then their support systems should have, too.
True. They should have put those generators 60-70 feet above sea level, at least.

Perhaps an extreme idea, but I believe nuclear plants should actually be built on platform rigs in the ocean. That way, when all else fails, just activate a special lever and the entire facility falls to the ocean floor. IMHO, this would eliminate the possibility of airborn fallout.

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03-14-2011, 11:02 AM
  #103
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SLang View Post
Telos, not sure what your background is and it's very likely you know a lot more about this than me, but.....from what I am seeing they are in a last-ditch effort to save these reactors from melting down by pumping in seawater. The seriousness of the issue in underlined by the fact that they've made that decision knowing full well that once they do that, the reactor is *********d and will have to be abandoned.

Also, weren't these reactors also built in the 70's? Like, 1970?

It seems to me the issue here is not one of modernity, but of the design of the back up generation and cooling systems. Those diesel generators should have been installed in such a way to prevent them being taken out by a Tsunami. If the reactors survived the Tsunami, then their support systems should have, too.
The media loves to overhype the event, which naturally American anti-nuclear supporters are going to latch on to. I would read this article to put things into better perspective:

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000...googlenews_wsj

There is virtually no chance for an extreme disaster and radiation spilling flush across the area around the facility. The Japanese reactors are Generation II, which is the same as the U.S., but they are better maintained and were developed much later than the U.S.'s reactors. They are much better versions of Gen2 nuclear reactors than ours. But, when you consider that Gen4 nuclear reactors are already available, which are infinitely safer, provides a staggering amount of energy that could serve all our needs indefinitely, and is far cheaper than any option available, the technology we use now is child's play. Our government really needs to take the Department of Energy more seriously, especially given that this is the second greatest problem that faces us for the next century (first greatest problem is water - we are running out of it).

http://www.ne.doe.gov/geniv/neGenIV1.html

But rest assured, there is no huge nuclear disaster on the horizon for Japan. There was one article I saw written that suggested the radiation could make it from Japan to the States... Ridiculous.

I agree with you though that Japan's could have been upgraded to Gen3 as well, which would have eliminated the need for generators and work merely on convection, but that is neither here nor there.

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03-14-2011, 11:10 AM
  #104
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(first greatest problem is water - we are running out of it).

Dude, this is propaganda. THE EARTH IS NOT RUNNING OUT OF WATER!!!! Roughly 70% of the planet's surface is covered in water. All that ocean water can be converted into drinking water with little effort. Every time we intake water, that same water eventually finds its way back into our ecosystem. THERE IS NO WATER SHORTAGE!!! Not in developed, non-desert countries, anyway.

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03-14-2011, 11:21 AM
  #105
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Capn Brown View Post
Dude, this is propaganda. THE EARTH IS NOT RUNNING OUT OF WATER!!!! Roughly 70% of the planet's surface is covered in water. All that ocean water can be converted into drinking water with little effort. Every time we intake water, that same water eventually finds its way back into our ecosystem. THERE IS NO WATER SHORTAGE!!! Not in developed, non-desert countries, anyway.
I must re-phrase. We are not in danger of running out of water, in general, as a resource - at least not at the moment... We are in danger of running out of drinking water though. I am not talking specifically about the United States, though we have our problems with it too, but more so the entire planet. The rate of natural increase in population is very high, compared to the supply of clean water available, millions have to die every year because of the simple fact that there is no water for them to drink. The costs are astronomical, and no one is going to foot the bill, better technology is needed in the field of water.

The death toll from water contamination is estimated to be 5.1 million people per year, or 14,000 people per day.

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03-14-2011, 12:10 PM
  #106
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I must re-phrase. We are not in danger of running out of water, in general, as a resource - at least not at the moment... We are in danger of running out of drinking water though. I am not talking specifically about the United States, though we have our problems with it too, but more so the entire planet. The rate of natural increase in population is very high, compared to the supply of clean water available, millions have to die every year because of the simple fact that there is no water for them to drink. The costs are astronomical, and no one is going to foot the bill, better technology is needed in the field of water.

The death toll from water contamination is estimated to be 5.1 million people per year, or 14,000 people per day.
For what it is worth, this is correct. There is approximately 1-3% freshwater that is currently available and we are quickly running out of it (with pollution being a major concern). And, further the idea of conversion of marine to fresh is not a overtly viable one, even if the technology exists, as it is rather inefficient and rather expensive. As such, Telos' assertion is correct.

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03-14-2011, 12:34 PM
  #107
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As such, Telos' assertion is correct.
New Jersey disagrees.....




If anything, the Earth has a problem with controlling the water that currently exists upon it. Yes, drinking water does fall within that category, but, worst case scenario, we'll develop water refineries. I'm not worried.

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03-14-2011, 12:44 PM
  #108
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New Jersey disagrees.....




If anything, the Earth has a problem with controlling the water that currently exists upon it. Yes, drinking water does fall within that category, but, worst case scenario, we'll develop water refineries. I'm not worried.
Yes, but this is an issue of flooding and mass wasting. It is not quite the same as what Telos and I were commenting on. I agree, though, that it was pretty surprising to see this happen to NJ, especially on the heels of what happened in Japan.

There was a curious note from Hokkaido regarding the seismological data before the earthquake. As it happens there was a group of seismologists on the island conducting research into the activity in the area (thus, perhaps indirectly along the Ring of Fire) and they were stating that they did not know the Japan issue was going to occur. I am a scientists, and even I would say that we as a species have so far to go in our understanding...

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03-14-2011, 01:07 PM
  #109
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Where I live most of the time I have a thing called a "System Catch Gather". Its a system that consists of a baker tank that is 10'tall and 8 around. Inside of it is a filtration system and storage area. On top of it is a 15 ft around 3ft deep snow catch. Picture a syphon. Snow gets caught in the catch syphon and when it hits a specific weight the generator kicks in melts the snow and you end up with around 40 gallons of fresh filtered clean safe water. It sounds like a bit problem but it snows so often that my tank is most always full of water.

I would have to check but I think that it holds 800 gallons of filtered water at a time. It isn't a perfect system or even near it but the water is great and if I were industrious I would have bought the second smaller tank that was optional with it and stores 1100 gallons at a time giving me close to 2000 gallons of ready to use water at a time. (the numbers are close but are approx).


The reason I bring this device up is that it is dated technology and reliant on specific factors to be effective but if this thing is out there then there must be better alternatives as well.

We are screwed where fresh water is concerned, there was a story in the papers awhile ago where a small town sold the rights to all of the water on a mountain that was considered to be a part of the town to one of the big water conglomerates.

The town got a ton of money for the water but in the end the town is struggling with several unforeseen issues as a result of the sale. For some reason I remember it happening in Truckee or somewhere around the Lake Tahoe area but at any rate it is an excellent indicator and cautionary tale.

A gallon of water is usually more than a gallon of gas in many area's and that is today. It gets more expensive all the time. Big companies are aware of this and are buying up water rights all over the U.S. and have started to do so in Canada.

IF it wasn't seen to be such a hot commodity then these businesses wouldn't be spending so much in an effort to corner the fresh water market.

Another story that comes to mind is about a small town in Ak who has sold all of its additional water rights (can't remember why that term sticks but it is a story you can look up) to a company in India. The company pays an exceptionally large amount of money for these rights and they as of the time that I heard about this story (somewhere within the past year) they hadn't any intention of sending a big tanker over to get the water that they had purchased. Leaving you to wonder why they spent so much money buying the rights to this water supply.

To me the answer is easy, they want the rights so that they can get the water once supply and demand provide a large enough profit margin to make it worth their while.

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03-14-2011, 02:19 PM
  #110
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IF it wasn't seen to be such a hot commodity then these businesses wouldn't be spending so much in an effort to corner the fresh water market.

Personally, I see this as nothing more than speculation. Large corporations and hedge funds are looking to make huge profits but cannot drink from the same well too often (no pun intended!). Around ten years ago, the market saw a massive "Tech Bubble" which eventually burst. More recently, we've had an "Oil Bubble" followed by a "Housing Bubble". Currently, it looks as if another oil bubble is forming, along with gold.

In the not too distant past, those fools at Enron successfully created a fictitious "Future Energy Demand Bubble". Well, this phony machination actually resulted in real power loss to several sections of the United States before the scandal was found out.

Quite literally, Enron was manufacturing a localized energy crisis, just because they could. There were several other crazy things that Enron attempted to develop markets (and ensuing crises) for, but they escape me just now.

When speculators run out of things to speculate upon, they tend to invent new things to speculate upon. For more information about this, I suggest Googling "George Soros" and "currency speculation".

IMHO, corporations buying up water rights is nothing more than the attempted creation of another bubble; The "Water Bubble". Does that mean we're going to have a real shortage of drinking water? Who knows. It is important, however, that you believe the crisis/demand is real. That's how these monsters make their bucks.

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03-14-2011, 02:24 PM
  #111
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The money and technology are just not there. Sure, it isn't an extinction event, and it likely won't have a major impact on us middle class Americans, but it is all too convenient and easy to cast such things to "oh, they'll figure out something" when you or your family isn't one of the 5.1 million dying from it every year.

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03-14-2011, 04:46 PM
  #112
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Personally, I see this as nothing more than speculation. Large corporations and hedge funds are looking to make huge profits but cannot drink from the same well too often (no pun intended!). Around ten years ago, the market saw a massive "Tech Bubble" which eventually burst. More recently, we've had an "Oil Bubble" followed by a "Housing Bubble". Currently, it looks as if another oil bubble is forming, along with gold.

In the not too distant past, those fools at Enron successfully created a fictitious "Future Energy Demand Bubble". Well, this phony machination actually resulted in real power loss to several sections of the United States before the scandal was found out.

Quite literally, Enron was manufacturing a localized energy crisis, just because they could. There were several other crazy things that Enron attempted to develop markets (and ensuing crises) for, but they escape me just now.

When speculators run out of things to speculate upon, they tend to invent new things to speculate upon. For more information about this, I suggest Googling "George Soros" and "currency speculation".

IMHO, corporations buying up water rights is nothing more than the attempted creation of another bubble; The "Water Bubble". Does that mean we're going to have a real shortage of drinking water? Who knows. It is important, however, that you believe the crisis/demand is real. That's how these monsters make their bucks.

Fair points but again it doesn't mean that there isn't already a fresh water shortage around the world and in that we know that to be true it seems to be that we are looking at this at times as if it is and will always only be someone else's problem when it is already starting to show its potential as being at least possible in North America.

So I am not disagreeing with you, I am saying that before I went out and brought in my water system and spent a few months arguing a 35% increase in the water rates over a one year period where I live and the response was that since that time the cost of fresh water has gone up another 30%. Inflation? A 65% rate increase over an 8 year period is more than just a little steep.

I have to fresh water streams that run through my backyard that I can always go and gather up, boil clean and drink if I needed to for at least 7 months out of the year without any hassle but, last November there has been talk about damming up the river that feeds these streams in order to make another power plant.

Down in L.A. things like that might make some sense to some people but where I live we have never been short of two things, snow and power. My neighbor (about a mile away from me so one of my neighbors) just got geothermal power for his property and when I get back home I am going to look into doing the same.

My point is that while some of my actions may seem a bit over reactionary I would tell you that after years of watching and having faith that the powers that be had my best interest at heart I have realized that this just ins't close to being the case. In that I live my life completely self reliant as much as possible. I have found that the less I rely on others for specific needs the better/happier I am.

I would say to anyone reading my garbage that they only need to take a day and do their own research on any subject that they question and at the end of it ask themselves what is or isn't the best answer for them and go in that direction.

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03-15-2011, 08:54 AM
  #113
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...... after years of watching and having faith that the powers that be had my best interest at heart I have realized that this just ins't close to being the case. In that I live my life completely self reliant as much as possible. I have found that the less I rely on others for specific needs the better/happier I am.

Yep. It turns out, your "guardian angel" is you. It's almost certainly for the best.

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03-15-2011, 03:33 PM
  #114
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I sure wish we had this in California... remarkable really. They actually had a 30-60 second warning that a strong earthquake was imminent - saving thousands of lives. They had a 5 minute warning of the tsunami... saving thousands more lives. The entire sequence was captured live - this is the emergency broadcast system warning as it appeared on all Japanese television stations. Earthquake warning first, followed by the actual earthquake 30 seconds later, followed by the tsunami warning:


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03-15-2011, 04:11 PM
  #115
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Yep. It turns out, your "guardian angel" is you. It's almost certainly for the best.
That is one way of looking at it. Another would be to say that my guardian angel guides me to make decisions that allow me to best provide for myself and my family.

Yet another would be that the holy spirit is my guardian angel and I am guided by this spirit on how to live the best life possible.

Its all open to personal interpretation and to me that is the point.

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03-15-2011, 05:15 PM
  #116
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IMHO, corporations buying up water rights is nothing more than the attempted creation of another bubble; The "Water Bubble". Does that mean we're going to have a real shortage of drinking water? Who knows. It is important, however, that you believe the crisis/demand is real. That's how these monsters make their bucks.
Kind of like how the crisis in Libya has caused gas prices to skyrocket.....despite the fact that only 1.7% of the oil imported into the US comes from Libya. Perceived crisis=profit....regardless of how real the threat is.

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03-16-2011, 12:02 AM
  #117
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http://news.yahoo.com/s/time/2011031...fullworldyahoo

Talk about a miracle. Really exciting and uplifting news. A 4 month old baby was found Alive in the rubble, and reunited with her family. truly a miracle

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03-16-2011, 12:04 AM
  #118
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The death toll is now estimated at 3,676... Mind boggling.

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03-16-2011, 12:44 AM
  #119
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I was in Hawaii Thursday night (Oahu North Shore) -- not the ending I expected on vacation -- thankfully we were spared a catastrophe. It was somewhat surreal seeing miles of abandoned cars on 99 the next morning.

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03-16-2011, 11:11 AM
  #120
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Kind of like how the crisis in Libya has caused gas prices to skyrocket.....despite the fact that only 1.7% of the oil imported into the US comes from Libya. Perceived crisis=profit....regardless of how real the threat is.
Agreed. I love how the day after the tsunami gas prices started to rise as though barrels of oil were just washed into the ocean as well. The oil industry is probably one of the most disgusting industries on the planet. They rip people off every time some sort of news happens and the public just takes it with no complaints.

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03-16-2011, 11:42 AM
  #121
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I agree that the Oil industry and our government both are exceptionally suspect with the way they manage to link any potential or real catastrophic event with the need to raise prices but, this is a different industry (water) and with so much money going into speculating and locking up water rights what difference does it make if there is or isn't a shortage of fresh drinking water?

If the same thing that has happened with oil prices is allowed to happen to H20 then real or not the prices will rocket up regardless of what anyone perceives to be real or imagined.

If anything using the oil industry only further strengthens the idea that something needs to be done today to ensure that each of us has the ability to procure clean drinking water without it costing us a fortune.

Take a look at South America, its already happened down there where a company came in and bought the water rights to a town ( I believe it was in Argentina) and then raised the prices leaving most of the local's unable to afford the price for a gallon of water.

There were protests, riots and the last that I had heard the problem was still ongoing.

The point is that if it can happen once somewhere it is possible for it to happen again most anywhere.

Real or not, if someone wants to take control of the water supply then we are all going to have to pay more for it. It isn't like there is a water alternative out there that is free or cheap enough to take water's place.


Meh, my family neighbors and I are set either way but the idea that anyone goes without water is something that I don't take too lightly, regardless of the cause.

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03-16-2011, 12:06 PM
  #122
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Agreed. I love how the day after the tsunami gas prices started to rise as though barrels of oil were just washed into the ocean as well. The oil industry is probably one of the most disgusting industries on the planet. They rip people off every time some sort of news happens and the public just takes it with no complaints.
Actually, Nymex crude prices fell the day after the tsunami because in the global supply-demand balance, Japan was expected to contract its oil usage, thus dropping demand.

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03-16-2011, 12:10 PM
  #123
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Actually, Nymex crude prices fell the day after the tsunami because in the global supply-demand balance, Japan was expected to contract its oil usage, thus dropping demand.
Why is gas $4 a gallon?

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03-16-2011, 12:15 PM
  #124
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Originally Posted by Tonellisghost View Post
I agree that the Oil industry and our government both are exceptionally suspect with the way they manage to link any potential or real catastrophic event with the need to raise prices but, this is a different industry (water) and with so much money going into speculating and locking up water rights what difference does it make if there is or isn't a shortage of fresh drinking water?
I suppose its convenient to blame anyone (oil companies / government) for "managing" prices, but truth of the matter is the US has no one to blame but itself. The US consumes about 20 million barrels of crude per day, yet only produces ~5 million barrels / day. This makes the US vulnerable to price fluctuations. The world consumes ~80 million barrels / day and has capacity to pump ~84 million barrels. Saudi holds virtually all of the world's spare capacity. If Americans drove fewer SUVs or used natural gas to fuel vehicles (thus driving demand down for crude oil), crude prices wouldn't be so high. Its that simple.

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03-16-2011, 12:21 PM
  #125
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Why is gas $4 a gallon?
The simple answer is supply and demand. Notice I said crude prices fell after the tsunami, not gasoline prices.

Couple of factors at play here. Japan only has 5 refineries to turn crude into gasoline. 3 were knocked off line. Despite the fact that Japan will need less gasoline in the near future compared to the time frame prior to the earthquake, they'll still need more than they can refine. They'll need to get the gasoline from somewhere. Guess what, the western United States has gasoline. The Japanese are willing to pay top dollar for gasoline. Until supply and demand balances, the correct economic decision is to send all gasoline to Japan. (This is over simplified, as we can't teleport gasoline overseas- it takes time- but you get the point.) Thus gasoline prices rise while crude prices remain constant (or decline).

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