In the British Parliament it is not allowed to call someone a “liar.” It is for this reason that Members of that august body have come up with such grand circumlocutions as “My esteemed Colleague is being parsimonious with the truth!” Now just so we get our language right when dealing with nitty-gritty problems of truth telling in foreign cultures let me start with Merriam-Webster’s on Parsimonious:
Definition of PARSIMONIOUS
1: exhibiting or marked by parsimony; especially: frugal to the point of stinginess
2: sparing, restrained
Now in the last few days the Nuclear Safety Commission has outed itself on how much it has been lying, err, rather been parsimonious with the truth. The Asahi Shimbun has an article today headlined Meltdowns also likely occurred at No. 2, No. 3 reactors of Fukushima plant in which we see:
“We have to assume that meltdowns have taken place,” Hosono said at a news conference May 16.
Haruki Madarame, chairman of the Nuclear Safety Commission, said in a separate news conference the same day that the meltdowns should not come as a surprise.
“When highly contaminated water was found at the No. 2 reactor building in late March, we recognized that a meltdown had taken place. So I informed the government,” he said. “As for No. 1 and No. 3 reactors, we recognized that, given the processes that led to the accidents there, the same thing had occurred.”
Note that the Chairman, Mr Madarame says that the announcements today should not be a surprise. This shouldn’t be a surprise to us now precisely why? Today the NSC finally publicly admits that meltdowns, pressure vessel and containment breaches have very probably occurred in 3 reactors. Just let me whisper that to you: THREE REACTORS HAVE MELTED AND BURNED THROUGH THE STEEL SURROUNDING THEM. However, Madarame wasn’t surprised, how could he be, he has facts which he has been parsimonious in dealing out. The NSC knew this was the case back in March, and told the government. But it didn’t publicly say so then.
TEPCO has blithely run to a rosy program of denial of the state of the reactors. The same report continues:
TEPCO’s measures to contain the crisis have been based on the assumption of lighter damage to the reactor cores.TEPCO had said it believed that only a portion of the nuclear fuel rods had melted. Now, it appears that all parts of the fuel rods have melted.
TEPCO recently said a meltdown likely occurred at the No. 1 reactor. But a TEPCO official on May 16 declined to comment on the possibility of meltdowns at the No. 2 and No. 3 reactors.
“We have yet to be able to grasp the entire situation at the plant,” the official said.
On March 27th I blogged about this scenario here. Now we know the truth.
There are several things that I predict follow from this.
- The exclusion zone will get bigger, more villages will be evacuated, never to return. I predict the exclusion zone will surpass Chernobyl in area.
- The ground water will be poisoned for months or years, no agriculture and drinking water from this area will be usable, for the foreseeable future
- The seas will continually be poisoned for months or years. This was not a factor in Chernobyl. Fishing along the East Coast of Japan will be profoundly affected for years.
- Cancer rates will rise in Japan. Cancer therapy stocks will rise.
- TEPCO will go bankrupt. They will shortly grasp the situation that they are effectively nationalized. Short their stock if you can.
- The Government and people of Japan, and neighboring countries on the Pacific Ocean, will bear the costs of the unintended consequences of the nuclear risk taking that TEPCO and Japan pursued.
Thanks, Safety Commission, that’s really looking out for the safety of citizens.