What’s REALLY Going On At the Nuclear Storage Site In New Mexico?

Nuclear expert Arnie Gundersen explains:

Background here, here, and here.

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  • NoWorldOrder.com

    Albuquerque, NM, with a population of over 550,000 is about 175-200 miles NW of Carlsbad. Folks in West Texas should be paying close attention to this situation!

  • Joffan

    Gundersen continuing to spew toxic nonsense. He fritters away what minuscule credibility he retains on trivial events, inflating a barely-detectable release to something scary and dramatic enough for his thrill-seeking fans.

    • jadan

      Are you insane?

      • Joffan

        No. Are you extremely gullible and easily panicked?

        Just for fun, I suggest you look up the half-life of plutonium-239.

        • jadan

          Just for fun, why don’t you imagine what it might be like to care about your environment and the other creatures, like yourself, that are part of it? Apologists for nuclear power, as Gundersen was most of his life, have begun to realize they have been supporting genocidal technology. Your science world fantasy of omnipotence lacks the credibility it once had. You no longer rule, science drone. Gullible & panicked people will begin to hunt down the nuclear sociopaths among them, like they do abortion doctors….imagine that!

          • Joffan

            Unfortunately you may be correct. “Science drones” may indeed be targets of those who prefer chaos and superstition, who prefer to disregard evidence and follow rabble-rousers.

            I would proudly stand beside an “abortion doctor”. Also known as someone who enables women to make their own choice about their bodies and reproduction.

          • Scottie Girl

            Jadan, Joffan is incapable of seeing the truth about nuclear anything. My advice: Don’t argue with fools.

    • Henry James Garner

      he’s just joking………..

    • AudioTactics

      Plutonium-239 has a half-life of 24,100 years and if it is ingested or breathed in as dust it is very dangerous and carcinogenic. It has been estimated that a pound (454 grams) of plutonium inhaled as plutonium oxide dust could give cancer to two million people. Therefore, as little as a milligram would be quite likely to cause cancer in a person. Given that officials have reported that the contamination has drifted 26 miles all the way to the city of Carlsbad and that the radioactivity is in a particulate form that can deposit in your lung where it can bombard internal organs with subatomic particles for the rest of your lifetime, I think some level of caution is warranted. Gundersen is not spewing toxic nonsense but rather raising valid questions that have not yet been answered by authorities. Maybe you should spend some time learning about how dangerous nuclear waste contamination really is because you seem to lack perspective on this issue. No person in they’re right mind would think a release of weapons grade plutonium, which is one of the most dangerous substances on the planet, is trivial.

      • Joffan

        A milligram of plutonium-239 would have an activity of 2300000 Bq. The actual detection results from the filters, which concentrated traces of radioactivity from vast volumes of air, was 0.092 Bq of plutonium. That equates to an almost unimaginably small amount – 8.7 picograms. That’s 115 million times smaller than a milligram.

        There is no danger to the public. This is indeed a trivial event as far as health impact is concerned. The reason it is being taken seriously at the site is to find the root causes and improve safety by avoiding this type of initiating event altogether, not because there is a huge risk.

      • Joffan

        A milligram of plutonium-239 would have an activity of 2300000 Bq. The actual detection results from the filters, which concentrated traces of radioactivity from vast volumes of air, was 0.092 Bq of plutonium. That equates to an almost unimaginably small amount – 8.7 picograms. That’s 115 million times smaller than a milligram.

        There is no danger to the public. This is indeed a trivial event as far as health impact is concerned. The reason it is being taken seriously at the site is to find the root causes and improve safety by avoiding this type of initiating event altogether, not because there is a huge risk.

        • AudioTactics

          OK, nice try but the problem is that the information that has been released by the DOE has not been truthful and the narrative has changed dramatically over time. The authorities have not been honest about what happened from the beginning of this radiation release and furthermore, they are attempting to hide the truth by releasing data that purposefully makes it difficult to follow the details of the accident. And even if you take the data released by the CEMRC and the DOE at its word, it does not fit the narrative that the release was trivial or that there is no health risk to the community. Furthermore, the measuring equipment that you mentioned does not account for the total radiation release but rather just a small amount of what was released. In fact, much of the radiation was released early after the incident on 2/14 and before the HEPA filters were switched on. Also, the air samplers used by the the DOE intake only approximately 70 cubic meters of air per day while the WIPP exhaust system has the capability to exhaust 28,800,000 cubic meters of air per day which means that the radiation measurement capability is barely picking up what the exhaust system is putting out. In order to measure it properly, the sampling system must have a draw velocity that is matched to that of the exhaust system and that is hardly the case! Furthermore, this is an ongoing situation and radiation is still being leaked by the WIPP on a daily basis.

          And here is a list of what we don’t know (among many other things):

          1. What caused the release.

          2. What was the nature of the release that allowed some contaminants to travel more

          than a mile and a half.

          3. What radionuclides in what amounts and what toxic chemicals in what amounts have

          been released.

          4. What contaminants were released into the environment before the HEPA filtration

          system was triggered.

          5. What contaminants in what amounts have been captured by the HEPA filters.

          6. What contaminants in what amounts have not been captured by the HEPA filters.

          7. Where all the contaminants that were not captured are, whether inside the WIPP

          boundary or outside the site area.

          8. Whether the amount of the release and the location of all of the contaminants can be

          determined.

          9. When radiation levels in the WIPP underground air will return to pre-release levels.

          10.The amounts of contamination in the WIPP underground.

          11.What underground decontamination will be done.

          12.What amount of exposure to radiation and toxic chemicals the first workers going

          underground will receive.

          13.What amount of exposure to radiation and toxic chemicals workers going

          underground will receive in the future.

          14.What amount of exposure that workers on the surface have received.

          15.What amount of exposure that workers on the surface will receive in the future.

          16.What surface decontamination will be done.

          17.What changes in the WIPP operation, monitoring, and safety culture will be

          implemented.

          Now unless you have specific answers to these questions, then you have no basis declaring that there is no danger to the public. Again nice try though…

          • Vm

            \Furthermore, the measuring equipment that you mentioned does not account
            for the total radiation release but rather just a small amount of what
            was released. In fact, much of the radiation was released early after
            the incident on 2/14 and before the HEPA filters were switched on.
            Also, the air samplers used by the the DOE intake only approximately 70
            cubic meters of air per day while the WIPP exhaust system has the
            capability to exhaust 28,800,000 cubic meters of air per day which means
            that the radiation measurement capability is barely picking up what the
            exhaust system is putting out. In order to measure it properly, the
            sampling system must have a draw velocity that is matched to that of the
            exhaust system and that is hardly the case!\

            question. okay for example i get a large amount of plutonium dust (maybe particles a few atoms large) and i’m inside an enouromously large building, say a big big big hangar for a dirigible. Imagine its big enough (many many MANY cubic km of air) and its airtight and there are no radioactive particles in the building before we start. I then scatter the plutonium dust into the air distributing it equally. I then get an air filtration system which sucks a minute fraction of the air inside the building onto a filter and i test the filter. Assume that the filter captures 99.9999% of all plutonium.

            If the filter says that the local concentration of plutonium is very very very low, then it really doesnt matter how much the initial concentration of plutonium is. What matters is how much is in the small amount of air my lungs breathe. am i right?

            its analogous to drinking seawater. Normal sea water in this 1973 study has up to 1.6 picocuries of plutonium per 1000 liters
            http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/BF02109507

          • AudioTactics

            What is important is the cumulative dose of radiation and that is based on the amount of radiation released and the amount of time to which a person is exposed. The small amount (in your words, not mine) measured by the air sampler actually implies a much larger release given that the radiation was released in a short window of time between the initial radiological “incident” and the time that the HEPA filters were activated. What is important when studying the epidemiological impact of a radiation release is exposure, which is a function of the amount of contamination and the period of time to which you are exposed. In the case of the community of Carlsbad, which has been impacted by the radiation, what matters is the amount of radiation released as this contamination could remain in the area and the local inhabitants will then breathe in or be exposed to the radiation in other ways on an ongoing basis. Note that radiation levels have risen 450% according to the DOE in just the past few weeks from post-accident levels and possibly even much more from the pre-accident baseline! So to answer your question, of course it matters what the initial concentration is because once that radioactive fallout is introduced to the area, it is now part of the environment and unless local inhabitants leave the area, they will continue to be exposed to radioactive contaminants. In other words, you can’t just suspend time and pretend the radiation has just disappeared. For example, in the Fukushima Prefecture of Japan, following the nuclear accident at the power plants, there are now limits for residents who are only allowed to spend limited amount of time in the danger zones and this is done to limit their exposure.

            Now to the interesting part… Joffan conveniently excluded the Americium data of 0.64 Bq/M^3, which translates to approximately 7 times the amount of radiation generated by the plutonium release. But most importantly, the radiation release occurred in a short period of time between the initial radiation event and the time at which the HEPA filter was switched on (since the filter “supposedly” is able to filter out most of the radiation from the WIPP exhaust). This implies that a huge amount of radiation was released in a somewhat explosive manner and contrary to the assertion that the release was under the EPA and New Mexico Environment Dept. action limit 37 Bq/M^3 threshold. In other words, by averaging out the data Joffan quoted over 5 days, the DOE is able to pretend that the release was under that threshold. For example, if you assume that it took 30 seconds for the HEPA filter to turn on, an air filter plutonium 239 reading of 0.92 Bq/M^3 would imply an actual release of 1,325 Bq/M^3 while an air filter reading of americium 241 of 0.64 Bq/M^3 would imply an actual release of 9,216 Bq/M^3 after you account for the fact that that release occurred in 30 seconds and scale the release up using a factor of 14,400 = 7,200 minutes in the 5 day sampling period x 2 half a minute periods in a minute. This implies that the combined radiation release from both plutonium and americium after the WIPP event was 10,541 Bq/M^3 and this level is way above the reportable action limit threshold of 37 Bq/M^3 (and in fact the updated release numbers are even higher at 0.115 Bq/M^3 of Pu 239 and 1.13 Bq/M^3 of americium 241 but I was just working with the much lower numbers that Joffan supplied for continuity). In addition to the sampling velocity issue which limits the CEMRC air samplers from properly measuring a release from the much higher velocity WIPP exhaust, it is also important to understand that the air samplers that measured this radiation are located 0.6 miles away from the site and are dependent on meteorological factors and may not even pick up much of the radiation depending on how the wind is blowing etc. This means, as I mentioned above, that we really have no idea how much radiation was actually released.

            To conclude, the DOE data is constructed to obfuscate the amount of radiation introduced into the area surrounding the WIPP and there is a systematic deception on the part of the nuclear industry and its proponents to hide the truth. From my standpoint, I am not against harnessing nuclear science or power if it can be done safely, however, I am interested in the truth so that we can make the right decisions. If we want to live in a nuclear world, then we at the very least need to understand and be honest about nuclear accidents because the dangers of nuclear contamination are very real and documented. Finally, it is way to easy for nuclear proponents to hide the truth and this needs to change… we need a move towards higher levels of accountability.

          • Vm

            i assume an air filter (unless really small) is, over a specified period of time, going to suck in much more air than a person can breathe hence it can trap more airborne dust than a person plus a filter isnt going to expectorate any dust as sputum, everything is kept until someone cleans it

            if thats so then placing a dosimeter on the filter and waiting a long period of time would give a much higher cumulative dose than a dosimeter worn on a person

          • AudioTactics

            I think you’re missing the point… the DOE claimed that the radioactive release only occurred during a very brief moment before the HEPA filter was switched on which means that the air sampler, which only can only sample a tiny percentage or approximately 0.00024% of the airflow capacity of the WIPP exhaust, registered a significant amount of radiation during a very brief window of time and while it was only testing 0.00024% of the radiation cloud released.

            And once someone has been exposed to plutonium dust, it doesn’t really matter if you measure it or not as the damage has already been done and they have already been placed at risk to a possible lifetime dose depending on how their body ingests it.

            What we really need is accountability and full disclosure, neither of which appear to be taking place.

  • Emma G.

    there is NO EXCUSE for continuing with nuclear power, nuclear weapons etc after Fukushima, and now WIPP threatens our air and our health here in New Mexico. FOSSIL FUELS and dangerous nuclear technology are hurting far more than they are helping. it is time to stop producing nuclear weapons and move fully to RENEWABLES as Europe is doing. Why do we always have to be held hostage to the plutocrats’ economic interests, determining everything from who we war upon to how we choose our dangerous sources of energy? TIME for America to take Her power back from these bastards.

    • http://comparegoldandsilverprices.com/ Bilderberg CEO

      Europe is shutting down plants and buying electricity from Russia. Hence, the net reduction of fossil fuel consumption for the planet is zero.

  • Vm

    Well, irregardless of how much radiation was released, how much radiation
    actually reached the towns and cities near WIPP? a single person waving
    a gieger counter on his back yard can tell us. Are there any reports of
    people doing so and encountering dangerous levels?

 

 

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