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Issues pertaining to radiation and radioactivity are not static. Regulations change, an item of concern at one facility raises issues of concern at others, public perceptions influence decision-making, and new discoveries are made all the time. Once each day, Plexus-NSD reviews its various sources of information so that we can keep ourselves and our clients constantly and continuously informed.

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September 15, 2016 – Press Pieces

On September 15th, 2016, posted in: Latest News, Press Pieces

September 15, 2016 – Platts – Progress on waste issue key to support for nuclear: US senator – US Senator Dianne Feinstein of California said at an appropriations subcommittee hearing Wednesday that she cannot continue to support nuclear power if there is “no strategy for the long-term storage of the waste.” Feinstein, the senior Democrat on the Appropriations Subcommittee on Energy and Water Development, criticized the nuclear power industry in her opening statement on what she called its failure to speak with “one voice” on the need for interim storage of utility spent fuel. The country, she said, “should be working to establish interim [spent fuel] storage far away from reactors and population centers.” The hearing was scheduled to look at the future of nuclear power.

September 15, 2016 – Sputnik International – Seoul Finds No Traces of Radionuclides After Pyongyang’s Nuke Test – South Korea’s Nuclear Safety and Security Commission has not found radioactive contamination in environment following North Korea’s recent nuclear test, the commission said in a statement on Thursday.MOSCOW (Sputnik) — On September 9, Pyongyang confirmed that it had carried out a nuclear test at its northeastern nuclear test site. The nuclear experiment is believed to be the fifth and largest since North Korea started pursuing nuclear and ballistic missile programs, drawing condemnation from the international community. “The Nuclear Safety and Security Commission has not found any traces of radionuclides, such as xenon, in its tests of soil, water and air samples following North Korea’s fifth nuclear test,” the statement said, as quoted by the Yonhap news agency.

September 15, 2016 – Lab Manager – FSU Chemistry Professor Explores Outer Regions of Periodic Table – A little known—and difficult to obtain—element on the fringes of the periodic table is broadening our fundamental understanding of chemistry. In the latest edition of the journal Science, Florida State University Professor Thomas Albrecht-Schmitt captures the fundamental chemistry of the element berkelium, or Bk on the periodic table. “What this really gives us is an understanding of how chemistry is changing late in the table,” Albrecht-Schmitt said. “The purpose is to understand the underlying chemistry of the element. Even after having it for almost 70 years, many of the basic chemical properties are still unknown.” Berkelium, discovered in 1949, resides at the very end of the periodic table among a group of elements called the actinide series. These elements are some of the heaviest, yet least understood chemical elements on Earth.

September 15, 2016 – Med Device Online – FDA Approves Zeiss’ Less Invasive Laser System For Nearsightedness – The FDA has approved the VisuMax Femtosecond Laser for small incision lenticule extraction (SMILE) procedures, which are indicated for the correction of nearsightedness in patients age 22 and older. Carl Zeiss Meditec (Zeiss) developed the SMILE procedure as a less-invasive alternative to LASIK and PRK surgery. LASIK, one of the first laser eye corrections developed, uses one laser to create a flap in the cornea and a separate laser to reshape the cornea and correct vision. In comparison, the SMILE procedure, which is the third generation of laser eye surgery, uses an all-in-one laser system to cut a slim disc of tissue (lenticule) which is then removed through a tiny incision. The removal of tissue causes the shape of the cornea to permanently change, which corrects nearsightedness. Authors of a 2012 comparison study argued that the simpler, less invasive procedure could reduce risk of side effects and procedure costs.

September 15, 2016 – News Medical – The SkyScan 1276 High-Resolution, Fast In-Vivo Desktop Micro-CT from Bruker Biospin – The SkyScan 1276 is a high performance, stand-alone, fast, desk-top in vivo micro-CT with continuously variable magnification for scanning small laboratory animals (mice, rats, …) and biological samples. It has an unrivalled combination of high resolution, big image size, possibility for round and spiral (helical) scanning and reconstruction, and low dose imaging. The image field of view (up to 80 mm wide and more than 300 mm long) allows full body mouse and rat scanning. The variable magnification allows scanning bone and tissue samples with high spatial resolution down to 2.8 µm pixel size. Variable X-Ray energy combined with a range of filters ensures optimal image quality for diverse research applications from lung tissue to bone with metal implants. Further, the SkyScan 1276 in vivo micro-CT administers low radiation dose to the animals allowing multiple scans in longitudinal preclinical studies without the risk of unwanted radiation – induced side effects. The system can perform scanning with continuous gantry rotation and in step-and-shoot mode with fastest scanning cycle 3.9 sec.

September 15, 2016 – Japan News – Even if Monju axed, N-fuel cycle plan to stay – The government has begun making final arrangements with a view to possibly decommissioning the Monju fast-breeder nuclear reactor, a move that would have massive ramifications given that the facility has been the pillar of a government policy to recycle nuclear fuel. The government intends to firmly maintain the fuel cycle, even if the curtain comes down on the Japan Atomic Energy Agency’s Monju reactor in Tsuruga, Fukui Prefecture. The fuel cycle is a system in which uranium and plutonium from spent nuclear fuel at nuclear power plants is reprocessed and extracted, and then processed into mixed oxide (MOX) fuel, which can be reused.

September 15, 2016 – Gainesville Sun – ‘These Shining Lives’ illuminates workers’ plights in the ’20s – There are few things more empowering than a group of women who are willing to fight the power. On Friday, the Acrosstown Repertory Theatre open its latest production, “These Shining Lives,” a play written by Melanie Marnich. “We have been rehearsing for about a month and a half with a cast of four women and two men,” said Laura Jackson, director of “These Shining Lives.” “There were quite a number of technical challenges with this play.” The play is based on the true story of four hard-working women who worked at the Radium Dial Company in Illinois, set in the 1920s. The job for these women is to paint the numbers on watch dials using a glow-in-the-dark radium-based paint.

September 15, 2016 – CCT News – Ted Talks: How Fear Of Nuclear Power Is Hurting The Environment – Michael Shellenberger began his speech by introducing to the audience that he comes from California, and at first, he believed that we are in a clean revolution – at least until they went and researched the statistics. Michael goes on to inform the audience that despite these enterprises and governments working on developing clean power; the numbers are showing that clean power is being used at a diminished rate despite the hopes of development. Michael further explains how one of the best and safest clean energy sources – Nuclear power has declined the most out of the various sources. Michael explains this is due to people’s unfound fear at the waste, the radiation and of course of the possibility of the development of weapons.

September 15, 2016 – Digital Journal – Virginia Residents Vehemently Oppose Elementary School Cell Tower 50′ from Playing Children – Parents and neighbors in the affluent Fairfax County, Virginia community are fighting to move the proposed cell tower away from their children at the local Crossfield Elementary School. Anticipating the revenue from the tower, instead of prudence and compassion for the children, School Board officials haven’t engaged to stop the tower approved by their Assistant Superintendent, Jeffrey Platenberg. Mr. Platenberg manages Fairfax County Public Schools facilities, buses and a growing profitable cell tower business on school property – over thirty towers and more planned. The proposed Crossfield tower is the second for an elementary school (50′ from the playground and less than 200′ from the building) and not placed in a stadium away from the school.

September 15, 2016 – Domain-B – Study reveals how ionising radiation damages DNA and causes cancer – For the first time, a team including University College London (UCL) researchers has identified in human cancers two characteristic patterns of DNA damage caused by ionising radiation. These fingerprint patterns may now enable doctors to identify which tumours have been caused by radiation, and investigate if they should be treated differently. Published in Nature Communications on Monday the results will also help to explain how radiation can cause cancer.

September 15, 2016 – Ship-Technology.com – Arktis Radiation Detectors to provide nuclear detection solution to Port of Antwerp – Switzerland-based Arktis Radiation Detectors, along with its distributor partner for the Benelux region Bavak Security Group, has been chosen to provide nuclear detection systems to the Belgian Government for use at the Port of Antwerp. As part of the deal, Arktis and Bavak will supply radiation detection equipment, which will be installed at the container terminal located at the Left Bank in the Port of Antwerp. The equipment includes Arktis’ Flash radiation portal monitors and two Modes_Snm mobile radiation detection systems. “We look forward to supplying our customer with systems that will play a key role helping to secure the port.” Bavak will integrate as well as provide technical support and maintenance during the contract.

September 15, 2016 – BDLive – Nuclear sector aims to boost reactor capacity – The world nuclear industry aims to build about 1,000 gigawatts of new nuclear reactor capacity by 2050, World Nuclear Association director-general Agneta Rising said on Thursday. Past installations have often been less than 5 GW a year, but in 2014 the industry built 5 GW, which doubled to 10 GW in 2015. One gigawatt is the equivalent of about a medium-size nuclear reactor. “We should be able to deliver 1,000 GW of new nuclear by 2050,” Rising said at the opening of the annual WNA conference in London.

September 15, 2016 – WGNS Radio – U.S. Senator Alexander of Tennessee Says Nuclear Power is Best – At the first of two planned oversight hearings on the future of nuclear power U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander, (R-Tenn.), who leads the Senate appropriations subcommittee overseeing federal energy and water funding, said today that nuclear power is the “nation’s best source of low-cost, reliable, safe, and pollution-free electricity” and that Congress should take four specific steps to ensure its future development: replacing or safely extending the use of some current reactors, solving the nuclear waste stalemate, doubling funding for basic energy research, and ending wasteful subsidies for mature technologies. “The United States uses about 25 percent of all electricity in the world to power our industries, our computers, our homes and most everything else we depend upon. Our 100 nuclear reactors provide about 20 percent of that electricity – which doesn’t turn on or off when the wind blows or the sun shines and is available 90 percent of the time. It is cheap, reliable and safe. At a time when the science academies of 20 developed countries and many Americans say climate change is a threat – and that humans are a significant cause of that threat – nuclear power provides about 60 percent of our country’s carbon-free electricity. It is our nation’s best source of low-cost, reliable, safe and pollution-free electricity, and it must be part of our energy future.”

September 15, 2016 – All Africa – South Africa: Why Government’s Nuclear Deal Will Destroy SA – The nuclear build programme will end up costing the South African economy over R3trn in debt, according to civil society group Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse (Outa). The organisation released a video this week unpacking the economic impact of the deal. South Africa’s current debt level is at R1.89trn and a nuclear deal can escalate this to above R3trn. It is estimated South Africa will have to borrow R1.2trn for the deal. “R1trn will be enough to build 100 million RDP houses. Two houses for every man, woman and child in the country,” stated the organisation. The repayments on a R1.2trn loan come to R100bn a year. This will put a dent in government’s budget to supply basic needs such as education, healthcare, social welfare and public transport.

September 15, 2016 – Fiscal Times – Toshiba, Engie UK nuclear group says wants clarity on government special stake proposal – “NuGen will continue to work with the government to understand more about the proposal to ‘take a special share in all future nuclear new build projects’ and how this might affect NuGen’s Moorside project,” the company said in a statement. NuGen plans to build a 3.8 gigawatt nuclear power station in northwest England. The station is expected to start operating in around 2024.

September 15, 2016 – Environmental Leader – Nuclear Energy May Rise Again – A different kind of nuclear reactor may be in the offing now that Terrestrial Energy has cleared a hurdle to get financing. The US Department of Energy has just asked it to submit the second part of an application to get a loan guarantee. In 2014, the Energy Department said it could potentially make $12.5 billion available to build advanced reactors. As for Terrestrial, it is asking for as much as $1.2 billion to build a 195 megawatt molten salt reactors. They can burn “thorium” that may not only be safer but also create less radioactive waste than uranium.

September 15, 2016 – Isle of Man Today – Manx government reierates call for closure of Sellafield nuclear plant – The Manx government has restated its commitment to press for the complete closure of Sellafield. It follows further claims about the safety of the plant highlighted in a TV documentary last week.The BBC Panorama expose alleged ‘years of neglect’ had left parts of facility – which is just 34 miles from the Manx coast – ‘rundown and vulnerable’. There were not always enough workers to maintain safety levels, it claimed, and liquid containing plutonium and uranium is being stored in degrading plastic bottles. The claims have been dismissed by both the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority and Sellafield Ltd who said in a joint statement: ‘Sellafield is safe, there is no question about that.’

September 15, 2016 – The Guardian – It’s absurd that Hinkley is going ahead while cheaper, cleaner options are blocked – It’s finally happened. After weeks of speculation, and despite a hastily called review by Theresa May, the government has given a green light to the most expensive white elephant of a project in British history. The nuclear power station proposed at Hinkley Point is no ordinary piece of infrastructure. Indeed, according to Greenpeace it will be the most costly object ever built on Earth. A large chunk of the funds for the construction will come from China as part of a deal that will see it lead on the development of another reactor in Bradwell, Essex. EDF, an energy company owned by the French state, will stump up the rest of the construction costs. Just months after people in this country voted to “take back control”, ministers want to place a big chunk of our energy system in the hands of foreign governments.

September 15, 2016 – World Nuclear News – Report warns of medical isotopes shortage in USA – The current supply of molybdenum-99 (Mo-99) and technetium-99m (Tc-99m) is sufficient to meet domestic and global demand, but changes to the supply chain before year-end could lead to severe shortages and impact the delivery of medical care, according to a new report by the USA’s National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. The Washington DC-based Academies, which are private, non-profit institutions, said the “congressionally mandated” report examines the production and use of Mo-99, Tc-99m, and associated medical isotopes iodine-131 and xenon-133, and also assesses the progress made in eliminating highly enriched uranium (HEU) from Mo-99 production. Canada’s National Research Universal reactor, built at Chalk River in 1957, produces 40% of the world’s supply of Mo-99.

September 15, 2016 – Utility Dive – Nevada energy company submits $38M bid for TVA’s unfinished Bellefonte nuke – Phoenix Energy of Nevada (PENV) has submitted a $38 million bid for the Tennessee Valley Authority’s (TVA) partially-constructed Bellefonte nuclear plant near Hollywood, Alabama. The price is just under the $36.4 million minimum bid, and far below the $5 billion that TVA spent over the past 40 years – construction on the site was halted in 1988 – at what was supposed to be a 1,200-MW nuclear plant. PENV hopes to use the 1,600 acre site and retrofit it with its magnetic induction generation technology that the company claims has zero emissions and can cost as little as $0.03/kWh.

September 15, 2016 – Sandusky Register – Davis-Besse shut down – The Davis-Besse Nuclear Power Station shut down Saturday after its turbine generator was forced offline. The plant was still offline Tuesday afternoon, spokeswoman Jennifer Young said. The station will likely remain out of service for several days. “Operators identified water from heavy rains moving through the area had entered the turbine building through a roof vent that wasn’t fully closed,” Young said. “Some of the water ran to an expansion joint on the turbine deck floor.” The water leaked into an electrical box for the turbine controls. The incident shut down the turbine at about 3:45 a.m. Saturday.

September 15, 2016 – Pueblo Chieftain – Cotter Corp. to pay EPA nearly $1 million for oversight costs – Cotter Corp. has agreed to pay the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency nearly $1 million to cover past costs the government agency incurred while working at the Superfund site during a two-year period. The Cotter Corp. oversees a now-defunct uranium mill just south of Canon City which has been on the EPA’s Superfund cleanup list since 1984. Officials are in the process of decommissioning the mill. The agreement requires Cotter to pay EPA $957,604 for past oversight costs, incurred between 2012 and 2014. Funds are required to be paid to the EPA by Sept. 23 and will be placed in a special account and used to pay for any future costs at the site, according to Richard Mylott, EPA spokesman.

September 15, 2016 – Navaho-Hopi Observer – EPA announces plans to begin next phase of Navajo uranium cleanup – Federal officials took the first step Sept. 2 toward a planned $1 billion cleanup of abandoned uranium mines in and around the Navajo Nation, seeking bids to assess the problem and begin planning the project. The Environmental Protection Agency expects to use about $85 million for the planning, part of a nearly $1 billion settlement with Kerr-McGee Corp., later Tronox Inc., which operated mines in Arizona and New Mexico. “This is only one element of a much larger project since 2008,” said Clancy Tenley, the EPA official who is directing the cleanup program in the Navajo Nation. “EPA and five other agencies have invested more than $100 million in cleaning up and assessing abandoned mines on the Navajo Nation.”

September 15, 2016 – NRDC.org – Important Deadline for California Nuclear Plant Retirement – There is an important state regulatory deadline this week for the historic and widely supported Joint Proposal to retire and replace California’s last remaining nuclear plant, Diablo Canyon, with lower-cost zero-carbon resources within nine years. The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) will accept comments through tomorrow (Sept. 15) on the plan to replace the two reactors at the Pacific Gas & Electric facility 250 miles south of San Francisco in August 2025 upon expiration of its U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission licenses. The Joint Proposal –which was negotiated by PG&E, the plant’s principal union, NRDC, and Friends of the Earth, among others –would replace Diablo Canyon’s electricity with energy efficiency, renewable resources like wind and solar, demand response (compensating customers for altering their energy use at specific times) and using energy storage. PG&E, one of the nation’s largest combination natural gas and electric utilities, serves 16 million people in northern and central California.

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September 14, 2016 – Press Pieces

On September 14th, 2016, posted in: Latest News, Press Pieces

September 14, 2016 – Nature – Modernize radiation measurements to save lives – There are two types of nation: those that use the metric system and those that have put a man on the Moon. The reliance of the United States on feet and pounds, along with its refusal to embrace metres and kilograms, baffles outsiders as much as it warms the hearts of some American patriots. But it is time for the country to give up on the curie, the roentgen, the rad and the rem. Instead, US regulators and scientists should adopt the appropriate SI units for the measurement of radioactivity. They should do so not only for the sake of international harmony, but also to protect the health and safety of US citizens. After years of wrangling, on 29 September the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine will hold a workshop to discuss whether the United States should adopt the international system of units for radiological measurements. The negotiations will affect every­one from NASA astronauts and air crews to emergency responders.

September 14, 2016 – Atlas Obscura – Watch Five Alarmingly Calm Men Stand Under an Exploding Atomic Bomb – In 1945, the first atomic bomb was set off during the Trinity Test in the New Mexican desert. This marked the birth of the Atomic Age, a period of nuclear experimentation that would alter the world on a sociocultural level, not to mention an elemental one. Today we know the danger of exposure to atomic bombs. First there is the initial fiery explosion, caused by the splitting of an atom. However, the arguably more dangerous effect of the atom bomb is its radiation, both from the original blast and the residual radioactivity left in its wake. This can spread over a miles-long diameter, but is most concentrated at ground zero, the point directly underneath the detonation. Hence why this video of five men standing directly beneath an atomic bomb test is a bit disturbing.

September 14, 2016 – Science World Report – The Effects of Ionizing Radiation on the Human DNA: can it Cause Cancer? – Even today cancer is the most dreaded disease that is affecting thousands of lives all over the world. Recently a team of researchers at the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute have identified that a significant amount of DNA damage can be caused by an ionizing radiation and lead to cancer. Ncbi.nlm.nih.gov reported that the effects of radiation found in this research can bring a huge change in the way certain types of cancer are treated by the specialists. It will help the doctors to treat the tumors that have been caused due to radiation differently. The results of this cancer research will not only make the treatments much more effective but will also help the oncologists to understand how radiation affect the cells and causes cancer. The findings of the research suggest that any kind of ionizing radiation like X-rays, gamma rays as well as radioactive particles are capable of damaging the human DNA. But the process of damage and the number of tumors that can be caused due to radiation and ionization still unknown to the world.

September 14, 2016 – Japan Times – Court recognizes two A-bomb survivors as hibakusha, rejects claims of two others – The Nagoya District Court on Wednesday recognized two men who were exposed to the August 1945 atomic bombing of Hiroshima as hibakusha, overturning the government’s rejection of their certification bid despite standards eased in recent years. The court, however, dismissed similar claims made by two women in the same case who were present during the nuclear attack on Nagasaki three days later, while acknowledging a causal relationship between the diseases suffered by all four plaintiffs and their exposure to radiation. Presiding Judge Yoshitaka Ichihara said in the ruling that while the men needed surgery or repeated hospital visits for medical treatment when they applied for certification, the women faced a lower probability of needing such help as their conditions had not deteriorated in the extended time since last undergoing surgical procedures.

September 14, 2016 – Healio – Brentuximab vedotin with chemotherapy, radiation effective for unfavorable risk Hodgkin lymphoma – Chemotherapy plus radiation therapy is the standard of care for patients with early-stage, unfavorable risk classical Hodgkin lymphoma. Although studies have shown that a chemotherapy-alone approach can improve outcomes in some patients, many of these studies excluded patients with bulky disease. Due to a concern for toxicity from radiation when used in a combined-modality approach, many patients now receive reduced doses with involved-nodal radiation. Brentuximab vedotin (Adcetris, Seattle Genetics) appears highly active in the treatment of patients with relapsed and refractory Hodgkin lymphoma. However, limited data exist on the agent’s safety and efficacy when used with combined-modality treatment for front-line therapy.

September 14, 2016 – The Royal Gazette – Radiation facility gets $500,000 donation – Bermuda Cancer and Health Centre will benefit from a half-a-million-dollar donation from two local companies as it prepares for the installation of new radiation therapy equipment. BF&M Limited and the Argus Group are each giving $250,000 to support the new BCHC building, which will house Bermuda’s first radiation facility. Patients who require radiation can presently only get the treatment overseas. John Wight, president and CEO of BF&M Limited, said: “As leading healthcare providers on the island, we have a responsibility to make a difference in the quality of treatment offered locally to our community.

September 14, 2016 – Burlington Hawk Eye – Former IAAAP nuclear workers learn about medical screening, compensation program – Former nuclear weapons workers and their families were given the opportunity to learn about free health screenings and potential compensation opportunities during a town hall meeting Tuesday in Burlington. Hosted by the U.S. Department of Labor, representatives from labor department, the Department of Energy, the Office of the Ombudsman and University of Iowa College of Public Health were on hand to discuss the Energy Employees Occupational Illness Compensation Program and answer questions from the audience. In the morning session, about 100 people gathered to learn about the program and share their experiences. About 20 people were present at the Comfort Suites for the evening session. “Congress recognized that there were individuals who worked as contractors and sub-contractors for the Department of Energy in the production of nuclear weapons that were put in harms-way without their knowledge, often times,” said Rachel Leiton, director of compensation at the Department of Labor.

September 14, 2016 – Sputnik International – Multipurpose Fifth-Gen Nuclear Submarine Design to Be Developed by 2020 – The development of multipurpose fifth-generation multi-purpose nuclear-powered submarine design will continue until 2020, according to alakhit’s General Director Vladimir Dorofeev.ST. PETERSBURG (Sputnik) – Russia’s Malakhit design bureau plans to develop a multipurpose fifth-generation multi-purpose nuclear-powered submarine design by 2020, its director said Wednesday. © Photo: Ministry of defence of the Russian FederationRussian Missile System, Submarine Engage Simulated Targets at Kavkaz-2016 DrillsMalakhit’s General Director Vladimir Dorofeev said early last month the bureau had signed a contract with the Russian Defense Ministry to design the advanced nuclear submarine with construction to start sometime after 2020.

September 14, 2016 – World Nuclear News – UK civil nuclear job count rises by 2000 – More high quality, high skilled jobs are being created by the UK’s civil nuclear industry, new statistics from the Nuclear Industry Association (NIA) show. Some 65,791 people are now working in the sector, an increase of more than 2000 on last year. The NIA’s Civil Nuclear Jobs Map also highlights the number of women, apprentices and graduates employed in the industry. More than one-fifth of all employees are female, almost 2000 are on an apprenticeship program and over 1000 are part of a graduate scheme.

September 14, 2016 – Evening Standard – Theresa May set to allow Chinese-backed nuclear plant at Hinkley Point – Theresa May is poised to give the go-ahead to the controversial Hinkley Point nuclear power plant within days, sources indicated today. Downing Street insisted no decision has been reached but sources in Whitehall told the Standard the “mood” at No 10 is for a swift approval. Mrs May is said to have planned to make the announcement last Monday and lined up a telephone call to French President François Hollande – only for it to be cancelled at the 11th hour when fresh questions were raised. The £18 billion reactor in Somerset, to be built by French company EDF with Chinese investment, is planned to power 5.8 million homes when it comes on stream from 2025, easing the UK’s looming energy crisis.

September 14, 2016 – Pirate FM – Plymouth Tests Response To Nuclear Reactor Emergencies – How would Plymouth cope with a nuclear reactor emergency? A siren will sound across the city on Wednesday as part of a test. Devonport dockyard and the MoD are among those running operation Short Sermon. Personnel will have to take shelter or evacuate but locals will not be affected. A Royal Navy spokesperson said: “As a routine part of the Ministry of Defence, Babcock and Plymouth City Council’s contingency planning, a one-day nuclear emergency response exercise will take place on Wednesday 14th September. “Code-named Exercise Short Sermon 16, the day is designed to test the procedures in place for dealing with a nuclear reactor emergency involving a nuclear-powered submarine at Devonport. During the day personnel from approximately 27 agencies will be responding at the tactical, operational and strategic levels in Plymouth, Exeter, and Truro.

September 14, 2016 – Forbes – Terrestrial Energy’s Advanced Nuclear Technology – The IMSR – Takes Several Steps Forward – Terrestrial Energy USA recently announced that it had achieved a significant progress step in its push to move from a reactor design to a completed and operating reactor. The US Department of Energy was sufficiently satisfied with the information the company provided in Part 1 of its application for a loan guarantee under Title XVII of the Energy Policy Act of 2005, as amended, that it issued an invitation to the company to submit Part II. Terrestrial Energy is asking the US government to provide a co-signature for a loan of between $800 million and $1.2 billion. The money will finance a project to license, construct and commission its first 195 MWe IMSRTM. Though the company is evaluating several potential locations, it is currently in discussions with the Idaho National Laboratory (INL) to create a site somewhere on the nearly 900 square mile federally owned facility.

September 14, 2016 – New York Times – ‘Command and Control’ Warns of Decline of Nation’s Nuclear Complex – An understated warning comes toward the end of a new documentary on a Titan 2 missile accident that shook the small town of Damascus, Ark., in mid-September 1980. The missile exploded in its underground silo, throwing aloft a thermonuclear warhead with a destructive potential greater than all the bombs dropped in World War II. Its detonation would have leveled much of Arkansas and sent clouds of deadly radioactivity raining down on the East Coast. Harold Brown was the defense secretary who breathed a sigh of relief once miliary officials had managed to locate the missing warhead and render it safe. As a young physicist, he had designed nuclear arms and risen to serve as Secretary of the Air Force and director of Defense Research and Engineering in the Kennedy and Johnson administrations. For President Carter, he ran the American military. Dr. Brown gives his take on the modern implications of the Titan 2 accident as part of the new documentary, “Command and Control,” released this month. He casts it as a cautionary tale, warning that the nation’s atomic complex has fallen into decline.

September 14, 2016 – Pricenomics – The Towns That Say “Yes in my Backyard!” to Nuclear Waste⁠⁠⁠ – On November 10, 2011, a hundred or so residents of Andrews, Texas, gathered at a large hole in the ground to celebrate the grand opening of America’s newest nuclear waste dump. Assembled amongst the locals were political and business luminaries from Dallas, Austin, and Washington D.C.. For the ribbon cutting, hedge trimmer-sized scissors were passed out to the various men in suits responsible for making Andrews County a repository for the nation’s radioactive trash. Among them were the senior managers of Waste Control Specialists (WCS), the company that owns the site, Harold Simmons, the conservative Dallas billionaire who owned that company; and Bob Zap, the mayor of Andrews at the time. The inauguration of the low-level radioactive waste facility, Texas’ first, ended with a barbecue. Most communities would not find the prospect of housing nuclear refuse cause for celebration. And yet, two years earlier, the town had narrowly voted to fund the construction of the disposal site with a $75-million bond.

September 14, 2016 – Albany Times Union – State wants radiation detectors in landfills – The sites hardly glow in the dark, but all of the state’s active landfills would have to be equipped with radiation detectors according to new regulations proposed by the state Department of Environmental Conservation. It’s an idea that environmentalists support but that counties oppose as an unneeded cost. The proposed requirement is part of a vast overhaul of landfill regulations, which haven’t been updated in about a decade.

September 14, 2016 – Global Research – Fukushima Backlash Hits Japan Prime Minister. Fukushima is NOT under Control – Nuclear power may never recover its cachet as a clean energy source, irrespective of safety concerns, because of the ongoing saga of meltdown 3/11/11 at Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant. Over time, the story only grows more horrific, painful, deceitful. It’s a story that will continue for generations to come. Here’s why it holds pertinence: As a result of total 100% meltdown, TEPCO (Tokyo Electric Power Company) cannot locate or remove the radioactive molten core or corium from the reactors. Nobody knows where it is. It is missing. If it is missing from within the reactor structures, has it burrowed into the ground? There are no ready answers. And, the destroyed nuclear plants are way too radioactive for humans to get close enough for inspection. And, robotic cameras get zapped! Corium is highly radioactive material, begging the question: If it has burrowed thru the containment vessel, does it spread underground, contaminating farmland and water resources and if so, how far away? Nobody knows?

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September 13, 2016 – 81 FR 62935-62937 – NUCLEAR REGULATORY COMMISSION – Service Level I, II, III, and In-Scope License Renewal Protective Coatings Applied to Nuclear Power Plants – The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) is issuing for public comment draft regulatory guide (DG)-1331, “Service Level I, II, III, and In-Scope License Renewal Protective Coatings Applied to Nuclear Power Plants.” This DG is proposed Revision 3 of Regulatory Guide (RG) 1.54, “Service Level I, II, and III Protective Coatings Applied to Nuclear Power Plants.” The NRC proposes to revise the guide to update the latest American Society for Standards and Testing (ASTM) International standards approved for use in the prior revision of this guide. In addition, the NRC proposes to expand the scope of the regulatory guide to address aging management of internal coatings and linings on components within the scope of the NRC’s license renewal regulations.

September 13, 2016 – 81 FR 62972-62973 – DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION – Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration – Hazardous Materials: International Regulations for the Safe Transport of Radioactive Material (SSR-6); Draft Revision Available for Comment – PHMSA seeks public comment on a draft revision of the International Atomic Energy Agency’s (IAEA) “Regulations for the Safe Transport of Radioactive Material” (SSR-6), which is scheduled for publication in 2018. PHMSA and the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) will submit comments jointly to the IAEA regarding the draft document. PHMSA thereby requests public input to assist in U.S. comment development.

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September 13, 2016 – Press Pieces

On September 13th, 2016, posted in: Latest News, Press Pieces

September 13, 2016 – Boston Globe – It’s too risky to wait for Pilgrim plant’s shutdown – The Pilgrim nuclear power plant in Plymouth isn’t aging gracefully, and that’s reason to worry. Twice in less than three weeks the reactor had to be shut down as a safety precaution. Last Tuesday, operators pulled the switch after detecting an unexpected fluctuation in water levels. The prior stoppage, which lasted four days, was prompted by a malfunctioning valve that’s supposed to keep radioactive steam from leaking. While the Nuclear Regulatory Commission says neither incident put employees or the public in danger, they lend more credence to critics’ calls for an expedited decommissioning of the 44-year-old plant, which is now scheduled to go offline in the spring of 2019. In announcing the impending closure last October, the plant’s owner, Louisiana-based Entergy Corp., said cheap natural gas and the many millions of dollars needed for safety upgrades made it too expensive to keep generating electricity from the shore of Cape Cod Bay. The decision was made public shortly after regulators classified Pilgrim as one of the three worst-run nuclear stations in the country.

September 13, 2016 – Register-Herald – Deputies investigating theft of gauge containing radioactive materials – Police are working to recover a piece of construction equipment that contains a small, sealed amount of radioactive material. A press release issued by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission Monday said that a portable moisture-density gauge was stolen Sept. 10 from a Thrasher Engineering truck parked in Beaver. Raleigh County Sheriff Steve Tanner said police believe the incident is a simple burglary and the public is not at risk. “We expect this was stolen to be sold as a unit — that the point of the theft was to sell it as a piece of equipment — not for the nuclear material to be removed,” he said.

September 13, 2016 – Trend News Agency – S.Korea says Armenia poses nuke threat to entire region – The Armenian Metsamor Nuclear Power Plant (NPP) poses a nuclear threat and the international community must assess that fact, Choe Chong-dae, president of Dae-kwang International Co., said in an article in The Korea Times. Choe Chong-dae, who is also director of the Korean-Swedish Association, said that Hrant Bagratyan, former prime minister of Armenia, stressed that Armenia has created nuclear weaponry. The author said that Bagratyan’s comments raise profound concern. “Armenian former prime minister’s comments should not be taken lightly, the author said. “Armenian citizens have played an instrumental role in smuggling nuclear and radioactive nuclear waste materials, as reflected in media reports exposing them.”

September 13, 2016 – Expatica – More cases of leukaemia around Mol-Dessel nuclear site – Children living within a 15 kilometre radius of the Mol-Dessel nuclear facility have between twice and three times more chance of contracting leukaemia than children living in other parts of the country. The figures come from study and appear in an article published in Monday’s edition of the daily ‘De Morgen’. However, despite the study showing that children in the area are statistically more likely to contract leukaemia, in absolute figures still only “a handful of children are affected”. The Mol-Dessel facility has produced, processed and stored nuclear material for many years. After a German study revealed that children living in the vicinity of nuclear facilities run a greater risk of cancer, it was decided to carry out a study in the area around Mol-Dessel. Moreover, the study, the results of which are published in the European Journal of Cancer Prevention says that a correlation has been found between the instances of leukaemia and distance from the site and the wind direction “into which radioactive gas would be emitted”.

September 13, 2016 – Wall Street Journal – EPA Proposes New Water Rules for Nuclear Emergencies – In the wake of a nuclear emergency, the Environmental Protection Agency thinks it would be acceptable for the public to temporarily drink water containing radioactive contamination at up to thousands of times normal federal safety limits. The agency is proposing this in new drinking-water guidelines for use in the weeks or months after a radiological event, such as a nuclear-power-plant accident or terrorist “dirty” bomb. The EPA has been looking for years at issuing drinking-water guidelines as part of a broader set of recommendations about what to do if radioactive material is released into the environment. Agency officials have said the 2011 accident at the Fukushima nuclear complex in Japan, where radiation was released, influenced their thinking on the matter.

September 13, 2016 – GovConWire – VPI Wins $165M Contract to Develop Radiological Detection Tech for Army – The U.S. Army has awarded VPI Technology Group a potential $165.2 million cost-plus-fixed-fee contract to help the military branch develop a radiological detection system. Nine bids were submitted to the Army Contracting Command for the contract through an online solicitation, the Defense Department said Monday. VPI will perform work through March 11, 2027 and the service branch will determine work locations and funds upon issuance of each order. Draper, Utah-based VPI designs, engineers and manufactures hardware and software platforms as well as offers professional services to support customers throughout the product life cycle.

September 13, 2016 – OpenPR – Non Destructive Testing Market to Cross US$ 22.0 Billion by 2022 – The Global Non Destructive testing market is projected to reach USD 22.20 Billion by 2022, at a CAGR of 7.80% from 2015 to 2022. Non Destructive Testing (NDT) is viewed as an essential need in commercial ventures, for example, in aviation industry, oil and gas industry, petroleum industry, and in construction sector. Developments in the NDT equipment market have expanded economically after the presentation of cutting edge X-ray equipment, for example, micro focus X-ray apparatuses, integrated X-ray tubes, glass X-ray tubes with window, radiation protected X-ray tools, etc. Over the past few years, demand for Non Destructive Testing (NDT) services has expanded rapidly.

September 13, 2016 – (e) Science News – New laser provides ultra-precise tool for scientists probing the secrets of the universe – Researchers have developed a new laser that makes it possible to measure electron transition energies in small atoms and molecules with unprecedented precision. The instrument will help scientists test one of the bedrock theories of modern physics to new limits, and may help resolve an unexplained discrepancy in measurements of the size of the proton. The team will present their work during the Frontiers in Optics (FiO) / Laser Science (LS) conference in Rochester, New York, USA on 17-21 October 2016. “Our target is the best tested theory there is: quantum electrodynamics,” said Kjeld Eikema, a physicist at Vrije University, The Netherlands, who led the team that built the laser. Quantum electrodynamics, or QED, was developed in the 1940s to make sense of small unexplained deviations in the measured structure of atomic hydrogen. The theory describes how light and matter interact, including the effect of ghostly ‘virtual particles.’ Its predictions have been rigorously tested and are remarkably accurate, but like extremely dedicated quality control officers, physicists keep ordering new tests, hoping to find new insights lurking in the experimentally hard-to-reach regions where the theory may yet break down.

September 13, 2016 – NBC Montana – Developers plan subdivision near Bozeman’s old landfill – The north side of Bozeman is a less developed area with more open fields and unpaved roads. It’s also where the old Bozeman landfill used to be and where one developer hopes to build more than a dozen homes. Residents like David Cook appreciate areas like Bozeman’s north side. He walks his dog at the East Gallatin Recreation Area and doesn’t like the idea of seeing construction there. “It is nice, quiet and peaceful. A lot of people are out here walking their dogs and enjoying the day. All that would change. Then you would have traffic, commotion, and people will be unhappy,” he said. A new subdivision with up to 20 lots is in the works. It would sit next to the East Gallatin Recreation Area. The park was site of the city’s landfill in the 1960s. Some studies show it’s emitting small amounts of radon, a naturally occurring contaminant. The city spent millions in a settlement earlier this year after residents near the Story Mill Landfill filed a lawsuit. Commissioners want to avoid that in the future and expressed concern at their Monday night meeting.

September 13, 2016 – News-Medical – Adolescent females have low rates of pregnancy screening prior to cancer treatment – A new study indicates that adolescent females with acute leukemia have low rates of pregnancy screening prior to receiving chemotherapy that can cause birth defects. The findings are published early online in CANCER, a peer-reviewed journal of the American Cancer Society. Although many chemotherapy drugs can cause birth defects, there are no standardized guidelines for pregnancy screening in adolescent female cancer patients and little is known about how often they are screened prior to treatment. To investigate, a team of researchers at the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine and The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia examined pregnancy screening patterns among adolescents with acute leukemia compared with adolescents with an emergency room (ER) visit who received computed tomography scans of the abdomen or pelvis. (In emergency medicine, pregnancy screening protocols exist for adolescents prior to receiving radiation due to known teratogenic risks of radiation.)

September 13, 2016 – American Free Press – Fukushima: The Nightmare Continues – Some global problems fade from our consciousness all too early. One example is the continuing environmental disaster resulting from the 2011 meltdown of nuclear power reactors in Fukushima, Japan. While some clean-up progress has been made, the overall status of one of the world’s most horrific atomic disasters continues to deteriorate, with no solution in sight. We are speaking here of radioactive poisoning of unimaginable proportions, and not just in Japan, as the Pacific Ocean continues to carry significant radiation levels wherever its currents reach. On land and sea, God’s creatures continue to show high exposure levels and ensuing harm. Yet Pacific Ocean fish is still sold in America and elsewhere without a warning label. Moreover, the Japanese tourism industry is pushing the “safety” of the surrounding, still highly radioactive region, and Fukushima itself is so “hot” that robots sent into the plant fail almost immediately. The Japanese government promotes the lie, too, as it wants to stop paying relocation monies to displaced citizens.

September 13, 2016 – The Guardian – Nigeria: How Ionising Radiation Damages Genetic Material, Causes Cancer – For the first time, researchers from the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute and their collaborators have been able to identify in human cancers two characteristic patterns of Deoxyribonucleic Acid (DNA)/genetic material damage caused by ionizing radiation. These fingerprint patterns may now enable doctors to identify, which tumors have been caused by radiation, and investigate if they should be treated differently. The results will also help to explain how radiation can cause cancer. Published in Nature Communications Monday, the results will also help to explain how radiation can cause cancer. Ionising radiation, such as gamma rays, X-rays and radioactive particles can cause cancer by damaging DNA. However, how this happens, or how many tumours are caused by radiation damage has not been known.

September 13, 2016 – The Republic – Radiation Detection, Monitoring and Safety Equipment Market Size, Share, Growth, Trends and Analysis To 2022 – Research Corridor has published a new research study titled “Radiation Detection, Monitoring and Safety Equipment Market – Growth, Share, Opportunities, Competitive Analysis and Forecast, 2015 – 2022”. The Radiation Detection, Monitoring and Safety Equipment market report studies current as well as future aspects of the Radiation Detection, Monitoring and Safety Equipment Market based upon factors such as market dynamics, key ongoing trends and segmentation analysis. Apart from the above elements, the Radiation Detection, Monitoring and Safety Equipment Market research report provides a 360-degree view of the Radiation Detection, Monitoring and Safety Equipment industry with geographic segmentation, statistical forecast and the competitive landscape. Browse the complete report at http://www.researchcorridor.com/radiation-detection-monitoring-safety-equipment-market/

September 13, 2016 – Birmingham Business Journal – Phoenix Energy submits $38M bid for Bellefonte Nuclear Plant – The Nevada-based Phoenix Energy submitted a $38 million bid for the Bellefonte Nuclear Plant near Hollywood – a fraction of the facility’s $5 billion overall investment. The company originally offered to buy the plant outright for the same amount as its bid for the site, but the Tennessee Valley Authority, which manages the facility, insisted the plant sell at auction instead. The company intends to use the facility for a new type of magnetic inductive power generation known as induction energy fuel conversion after investing a few hundred million dollars.

September 13, 2016 – CTV News – Amherstburg looks to update nuclear protocols – The Town of Amherstburg is looking to update its nuclear protocols in order to better align with industry standards. Officials say there are some gaps in the official emergency management program, one of which is the size of the primary zone. The current zone is 23 kilometres from Fermi, but stateside where the reactor is located, the zone is 16 kilometres. Amherstburg is looking for clarification on the standard. The Town is also looking to get more financial compensation from Detroit Edison, the owners of Fermi. It currently collects $25,000 each year to pay for training, staff, and facilities.

September 13, 2016 – BDlive – Nuclear industry welcomes request for proposals – THE Nuclear Industry Association of SA (Niasa) has welcomed the request for proposals for the nuclear procurement programme. In a statement issued on Friday, the nuclear trade association said it supported the calls for transparency in the nuclear programme but wanted local content and the development of skills to be considered as founding principles when venders were selected. “The nuclear project will not only support industry and create much-needed employment, it will also create a platform upon which our economy can grow and develop,” said Niasa director Knox Msebenzi.

September 13, 2016 – Gulf News – South Korea earthquake triggers nuclear safety concerns – Two earthquakes that jolted South Korea on Monday night, including the largest ever recorded in the country, prompted concerns about the safety of nuclear plants clustered in the quake-prone southeast. Korea’s Meteorological Agency said the two earthquakes, of magnitude of 5.1 and 5.8, occurred near the city of Gyeongju. They could be felt in the capital Seoul, over 300km to the northwest. Fourteen people were injured but there were no reports of serious damage, a Ministry of Public Safety and Security official said. Nonetheless, Korea Hydro & Nuclear Power Co shut down four nuclear reactors at the Wolsong complex in Gyeongju as a precaution.

September 13, 2016 – NRDC.org – Expansion of the National Source Tracking System – In the wake of September 11th attacks, lawmakers and nuclear policy experts raised concerns over the possibility of terrorists using radioactive materials to construct radioactive dispersal devices – to try to harm people, damage cities and cause chaos and panic by blowing up stolen radioactive materials. These concerns strengthened the need for secure management and tracking of sealed radioactive sources which are abundantly used in various industries. A sealed radioactive source is radioactive material that is used as an ionizing radiation source (a radiation source with enough energy to overcome the binding energy of electrons in atoms or molecules) for a specific product or device – and that source is permanently sealed in a capsule or bonded in a solid form. The capsule of a sealed radioactive source is designed to prevent the radioactive material from escaping or being released from encapsulation under normal usage and probable accident conditions. In most cases, a sealed radioactive source is installed in a device that is designed either to allow the source to move safely out of the shielded device to where the radiation beam is used and to be returned to the shielded device after the operation is complete, or to allow a beam of radiation to be released from the device while maintaining shielding around the source.

September 13, 2016 – Katrina Pitas on the NNSA, producing Mo-99 and the future of SHINE Medical Technologies – SHINE Medical Technologies, a Monona, Wisconsin-based medical isotope manufacturer founded in 2010, announced back in October 2015 that the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) had recommended approval of its construction permit for a new production facility in Janesville, Wisconsin. The facility is being built for the production of molybdenum-99 (Mo-99) without highly enriched uranium. Katrina Pitas, vice president of business development for SHINE, is in St. Louis this week to speak at the 2016 Mo-99 Topical Meeting. While preparing for her presentation, Pitas took time to speak with Health Imaging about what SHINE has been up to this year and what she will be discussing at the meeting.

September 13, 2016 – Cleveland.com – Davis-Besse reactor shut itself down over the weekend, no injuries or radioactivity reported – Davis-Besse engineers and electricians are wrapping up repairs to the electrical controls of the nuclear power plant’s generator today following an automatic shutdown over the weekend. In a routine filing with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, FirstEnergy reported that the reactor automatically and instantly shut itself down early Saturday morning after the plant’s main generator shut itself off.

September 13, 2016 – UKProgressive.co.uk – Fukushima Backlash Hits PM Abe – Nuclear power may never recover its cachet as a clean energy source, irrespective of safety concerns, because of the ongoing saga of the meltdown in March 2011 at Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant. Over time, the story only grows more horrific, painful, deceitful. It’s a story that will continue for generations to come. Here’s why it holds pertinence: As a result of total 100% meltdown, TEPCO (Tokyo Electric Power Company) cannot locate or remove the radioactive molten core or corium from the reactors. Nobody knows where it is. It is missing. If it is missing from within the reactor structures, has it burrowed into the ground? There are no ready answers.

September 13, 2016 – Scoop – Will Christie Whitman Apologise for Her Nuke Shill Game? – Soon after the 9/11 terror attacks 15 years ago today, then-US EPA administrator Christine Todd Whitman assured New Yorkers the air was safe to breathe. Today she has issued a “heartfelt” apology, admitting that her misleading advice caused people to die. But will she also apologize for pushing lethal atomic reactor technologies that could kill far more people than 9/11?

September 13, 2016 – Aiken Standard – Elite professionals handle nuclear cleanup – The men and women working to clean up the inactive PuFF facility are an elite team of experienced professionals. Called “the Dream Team” by facility management, the crew was handpicked to take on one of the site’s riskier environmental management cleanup activities. As the field activities associated with the cleanup of the inactive Plutonium Fuel Form (PuFF) facility in Building 235-F enters its second year, the risk reduction approach is paying off. To reduce the risk of a facility fire, the team has been able to safely and efficiently remove and control fixed combustibles, upgrade the fire detection system, and de-energize unneeded electrical circuits. To aid removal of materials from the cells and support material characterization, the team is draining and cleaning shield cell windows after their partial disassembly, installing lighting and mechanically isolating the cells. The 18-member crew was chosen primarily for their experience in handling radioactive materials, which – for most of the crew – came during the SRS transuranic waste, or TRU, campaign. TRU wastes typically consist of protective clothing, tools, rags, equipment and miscellaneous items contaminated with small amounts of plutonium.

September 13, 2016 – New York Ties – Unfinished Nuclear Plant, 4 Decades and $5 Billion Later, Will Be Sold – After spending more than 40 years and $5 billion on an unfinished nuclear power plant in northeastern Alabama, the nation’s largest federal utility is preparing to sell the property at a fraction of its cost. The utility, the Tennessee Valley Authority, has set a minimum bid of $36.4 million for its Bellefonte Nuclear Plant and 1,600 surrounding acres of waterfront property on the Tennessee River. The deal includes two unfinished nuclear reactors, transmission lines, office and warehouse buildings, eight miles of roads and a 1,000-space parking lot. Initial bids are due Monday, and at least one company has expressed interest in the site, with plans to use it for alternative energy production. But the utility is not particular about what the buyer does — using the site for power production, industrial manufacturing, recreation or even residences would all be fine, said Scott Fiedler, an agency spokesman.

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