Quantcast

PBS Takes Us on a Terrifying 'Post-Apocalyptic' Tour Inside Fukushima

Energy

Nuclear opponents are often criticized for using the term "apocalypse" to describe the triple meltdown/quadruple-explosion/endless-radiation gusher reality at Fukushima.

But PBS has now penetrated where ordinary journalists may not tread—the interior of the most radioactive place on Earth. PBS reporter Miles O'Brien shows us for the first time some of the visual reality of what has actually happened to a six-reactor facility that has turned into a trillion-dollar catastrophe.

Or, as PBS puts it, the nuclear "apocalypse" along the coast of Japan, daily pouring 300 tons of lethal isotopes into our ocean eco-system. This brave and fascinating excursion into Fukushima's innards features footage of the infamous Unit Four spent fuel pool, where Tokyo Electric is trying to bring down extremely radioactive fuel rods whose potential killing power is essentially unfathomable.  

Given the "State Secrets Act" banning Japan's citizens from criticizing the government, O'Brien's footage may be the last we see inside Fukushima for quite some time. Despite 150,000 signatures delivered to the United Nations asking for a global takeover, Fukushima's builders and mis-managers remain firmly in charge. In fact, the clean-up has become a major profit center for Tepco, which showed a multi-billion-dollar windfall in 2013 while putting the entire planet in peril.

One odd note: O'Brien shows footage of Lake Barrett, a former Nuclear Regulatory Commission functionary who was integral to the cover-up at Three Mile Island, where owners falsely denied for years that any fuel had melted. Barrett advocates dumping Fukushima's tritium-laden water directly into the Pacific Ocean. Will he also pop up at nuclear power's next "post-apocalyptic" nightmare?

Visit EcoWatch’s FUKUSHIMA page for more related news on this topic.

--------

Harvey Wasserman edits NukeFree.org  and wrote Solartopia! Our Green-Powered Earth.

 

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

A verdant and productive urban garden in Havana. Susanne Bollinger / Wikimedia Commons

By Paul Brown

When countries run short of food, they need to find solutions fast, and one answer can be urban farming.

Read More Show Less
Trevor Noah appears on set during a taping of "The Daily Show with Trevor Noah" in New York on Nov. 26, 2018. The Daily Show With Trevor Noah / YouTube screenshot

By Lakshmi Magon

This year, three studies showed that humor is useful for engaging the public about climate change. The studies, published in The Journal of Science Communication, Comedy Studies and Science Communication, added to the growing wave of scientists, entertainers and politicians who agree.

Read More Show Less
Sponsored
rhodesj / Flickr / CC BY 2.0

Cities around the country are considering following the lead of Berkeley, California, which became the first city to ban the installation of natural gas lines in new homes this summer.

Read More Show Less
Rebecca Burgess came up with the idea of a fibersheds project to develop an eco-friendly, locally sourced wardrobe. Nicolás Boullosa / CC BY 2.0

By Tara Lohan

If I were to open my refrigerator, the origins of most of the food wouldn't be too much of a mystery — the milk, cheese and produce all come from relatively nearby farms. I can tell from the labels on other packaged goods if they're fair trade, non-GMO or organic.

Read More Show Less
A television crew reports on Hurricane Dorian while waves crash against the Banana River sea wall. Paul Hennessy / SOPA Images / LightRocket / Getty Images

By Mark Hertsgaard and Kyle Pope

Some good news, for a change, about climate change: When hundreds of newsrooms focus their attention on the climate crisis, all at the same time, the public conversation about the problem gets better: more prominent, more informative, more urgent.

Read More Show Less
Sponsored
U.S. Senators Chris Coons (D-Del.) and Mike Braun (R-Ind.) met with Bill Gates on Nov. 7 to discuss climate change and ways to address the challenge. Senator Chris Coons

The U.S. Senate's bipartisan climate caucus started with just two members, a Republican from Indiana and a Democrat from Delaware. Now it's up to eight members after two Democrats, one Independent and three more Republicans joined the caucus last week, as The Hill reported.

Read More Show Less
EPA scientists survey aquatic life in Newport, Oregon. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is proposing to significantly limit the use of science in agency rulemaking around public health, the The New York Times reports.

Read More Show Less
A timelapse video shows synthetic material and baby fish collected from a plankton sample from a surface slick taken off Hawaii's coast. Honolulu Star-Advertiser / YouTube screenshot

A team of researchers led by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration didn't intend to study plastic pollution when they towed a tiny mesh net through the waters off Hawaii's West Coast. Instead, they wanted to learn more about the habits of larval fish.

Read More Show Less