1. They are stacking accumulating waste containers in the parking area, I understand. As there is a time limit that this is allowed, (30 days, I believe?), there is undoubtedly pressure to get the site reopened. Being distrustful, I lament the influence that pressure has on process. It is far easier to trust a process that is not suffering time constraints.

    1. I don’t know. Is it better off sitting in the parking lot at WIPP? Why not just stop shipping the stuff to WIPP until the site becomes operational?

      1. @POA

        Think hard about the logistics for a while. What happens to the people who are involved in the steady process of packaging and shipping the material? How far behind schedule will the process get if it is halted at various stages? Wouldn’t it be the least amount of disruption to get the material almost all the way into the facility? Judging from the photos I have seen, WIPP has a lot of space available for temporary storage. Any time limit placed on storage in the parking lot is purely arbitrary.

        1. Well….I guess if Murphy’s Law wasn’t so damned tenacious in rearing its ugly head…..

  2. “it is far easier to trust a process that is not suffering time constraints.”

    Ummm, you mean like the storage process wherever those drums are coming from? AFAIK this stuff is decades old leftovers from the cold war. It’s hard for me to believe the “problems” at WIPP are worse than leaving the stuff in Hanford, and Aiken, and wherever else it is now.

  3. Yes, that stands to reason also much of it will not need decontamination especially if the filtration system has been kept running.

    The New Mexico Legislature extended outside storage to 105 days and I agree the loading/”parking”/whatever area of WIPP is FAR better than spread all over the country in drums stored on lots near waterways and whathaveyou in various stages of begun, half completed and delayed cleanups waiting to be transported.

    Indeed some spillage/accidents is a reality when dealing with any waste and from the numbers released so far it seems to be going very well.

  4. minor typo:
    “Huizenga told the press conference that the headquarters representatives were impressed by the moral and the dedication of the workforce…”

    morale, perhaps?

  5. Seems absurd to store possible high level wastes up to 7 Curie per liter in a parking lot. The risk of a terrorist attack could severely damage the USA. One liter at that level is enough to make 1 Billion Fish “too hot to eat”

    1. @NP

      First of all, there are not too many fish near Carlsbad, NM.

      Secondly, I am not one who trembles in fear at the word “terrorist.” What make you think there is any kind of a legitimate threat to a facility in the NM desert of being attacked? Why would the waste be any more vulnerable there than where it already is?

      Remember, WIPP has nothing to do with creating material. It is simply the final resting place for material that exists and has existed for many decades.

      1. “Secondly, I am not one who trembles in fear at the word “terrorist.””

        Damn, Rod, get with the program. If theres not a mean nasty Al Kattie under all our beds, how the heck do ya expect our fearless leaders to find an excuse for turning our Republic towards fascism?

      2. @ Rod, I wanted to make a point on just how dangerous and how hot some of this material is. (1) One liter being able to contaminate 1 Billion fish is a good bring it home graphic.

        I think it is very logical to consider that nuclear waste building up in an open parking lot would be a heck of a softer target than other storage sites. Am I wrong? Well I guess I could ask an 82 YO Nun, LOL.

        1. LOL fish of the desert be warned.

          Why would they even bother on something that probably would not even be dispersed to populated areas? What is there? And then even if they could even get enough explosives for even a tiny bit of dispersal and wind was right and buy luck a bit did drift over populated areas, AND they did nothing you’d still have to wait years to see casualties if there were any.

          Its just so lame and ridiculous.

          1. Last time I checked Texas is populated and aerosolizing, say 1000 curies over Texas might get some attention, even affect energy production in the USA

            Funny that you take the obvious pot shot at the “fish” example. OK substitute chickens if that lets your brain wrap around it.

            John, your arguments would carry a lot more weight if you weren’t so insulting and condescending.

  6. Seems to me the only “nuclear terrorists,” I’ve ever heard of in my lifetime have been the folks like GreenPeace. I’ve worked at several commercial nuke plants and the big alarms on the old e-field were animals.

    1. “Seems to me the only “nuclear terrorists,” I’ve ever heard of in my lifetime have been the folks like GreenPeace”

      Yeah, well, give the nuns some credit, will ya? Poor gals went to all that effort terrorizing you glow in the dark folks, and you ain’t even giving them thier due. Hate to see thier efforts go unrewarded. You could at least cast a little animous thier way, cancha? I mean, they ain’t toting Uzis, but hey, there’s nuthin more terrifying than a bad habit.

      1. I’ll give them some credit. They were going after nuclear weapons.

        I mixed nuke plants and the weapons industry by mentioning commercial plants. This topic is for DOE stuff. I apologize. I did the same thing the green folks do and not differentiate between the good which can be done with the same technology as the bad.

        A hammer can be used to pound nails or pound heads. The hammer is not to be blamed only used correctly.

        1. The hammer is not to be blamed only used correctly.


          It’s probably not directly relevant, but in Lovins-Weinberg debate (that I reference here), Lovins provides the following in his final reply:

          While I should rather recycle a nuclear utopian into a realist than into any other kind of utopian, I should like to remind my friend Dr Weinberg – in the spirit of Abraham Maslow, who said that if the only tool you have is a hammer, it’s remarkable how everything starts to look like a nail – that a hand is a very versatile instrument, and can hold a great many things besides hammers.

          1. I only picked the hammer analogy because PissedOffAmerican is a carpenter. There are some carpenters whom I respect a great deal.

    2. Yes E like with the Superphénix. More recently in Italy a anti nuke Antichrist group, kneecapped a executive with a firm involved in nuclear engineering in 2012.

      The nuns were protesting nuclear weapons and trespassed on military facilities.

      People confuse that. Its like in this case and the last thing I would ever advocate for is putting recyclable spent fuel in salt caverns with bomb waste. But many anti nukes seem to think this is more about nuclear power. It just reveals their total incompetence and nightmarish stupidity.

  7. The anti nukes are overplaying their hand getting all WIPPed up. This whole event is demonstrating that accidents at these types of facilities are manageable and responses can even be improved to minimize potential impact.

    Even if this was much worse the argument for waste sorting, recycling and storing in central repositories is becoming stronger by drawing attention to what is possible and how it can be handled. Its being proven as we watch and considering what could have happened that its been irresponsible not to have been more aggressive dealing with this waste.

    1. None of the readings ive read in it (and they were paying very close attention) indicate significant exposure for health concerns was even possible much less plausible.

      1. Uh, except the 5 that took lethal doses? Lets not forget those pesky things called FOIA facts.

          1. “What lethal doses are you talking about?”

            Good question, I was wondering the same thing.

          2. Not sure, but I would guess it’s related to a post similar to this :


            which is based on articles like this:


            that are loosely connected to this paper by a sociology professor who was describing just how much an alarmist international press could be used to advantage by anti-nuke activists :


          3. Lol wayne. “A sociology professor.” I love that part. You can find even more ridiculous claims and “sources” if you look around the anti nuke sites. For instance:

            Radio: US Navy sailors had radioactive snow ball fights off Fukushima — Crew “pretty well toast” after weeks on Pacific… significant cancers, incessant bleeding from anus or vagina, blindness — Debris from USS Reagan sent to Hanford nuclear waste site – Voice of Russia – US Edition, Jan. 15, 2014.

            I wont name the site but you all know it.

            Contrast that with the actual readings and projections from the rather detailed study and report:

            Based on the ship you selected,
            , your radiation dose estimates
            (in rem, a unit of effective radiation
            dose ) for the 60 – day period are:

            Whole – Body Radiation Dose Estimate:
            0.008 rem
            Thyroid Radiation Dose Estimate:
            0.11 rem

            These estimates were calculated based on you spending 24 hours
            outdoors/on-deck, having a constantly high physical activity level
            (and associated breathing rates) ,and being exposed
            to the radiation over the entire 60
            – day period.

            The occupational dose limit for adults is 5 rem Whole body, and 50 rem Thyroid. ( 56 FR 23396, May 21, 1991 ) for comparison. And people are actually throwing out symptoms associated with acute radiation poisoning !!!

            Of course as seen in the WIPP stuff the whole body detector there can still detect harmless levels of radiation from nuclear tests, from over half a century ago in over 20 percent of Carlsbad, NM residents. Yet the people claiming cataclysmic exposure in Japan have yet to provide any kind of results of a single excessive dose.

            1. @John Tucker

              Nuclear proponents should pay attention to Kyle Cleveland’s paper, Mobilizing Nuclear Bias: The Fukushima Nuclear Crisis and the Politics of Uncertainty. Unlike certain other sociologists that stray outside of their field into the economics of nuclear energy, Cleveland remains within his field to discuss Fukushima’s sociological implications and how certain groups have effectively used it’s occurrence as a tool to further their group goals.

              Nuclear energy is not a purely technical issue; if we want to share our optimism about the technology more effectively, we need to understand more of the many layers associated with how others understand and respond to it.

          4. Its a good piece worth reading but I dont think I like the way that argument is made Rod. Read it a few times and still making my mind up on it.

            Of course I also dont think the highest unofficial radiation readings at the worst are how the operation should be characterized and they certainly would not lead to any of the conditions attributed to them.

            In a way, with the RT piece he was his own self fulfilling prophecy. Was he not.

            But anyway to be honest I was getting him mixed up more with other’s stuff I had see out and about.

            Like this and this . No to mention many more.

            1. @NP

              That site has posted an image of an email dated March 16, 2011. It is a daily status update from one member of the US Nuclear Regulatory staff to another.

              I contacted the Office of Public Affairs at the NRC and requested a comment.

              Here is the response I received:

              Time has shown the first couple of weeks after the accident were marked by a pronounced lack of verifiable information. An e-mail from that time, attempting to relay news with a clear statement of its unconfirmed status, cannot be treated as the last word on the matter. The definitive, independent Japanese review of the accident concluded there were zero radiation fatalities from the accident.

              Scott Burnell, Office of Public Affairs, US NRC.

          5. @Rod
            With the incredible amount of lies coming out of Japan and TEPCO, and understanding their motives for covering up acute deaths, I am pretty convinced that in that email there could be no misunderstanding a statement from the Japanese at that time that there were 5 deaths.

            I think it highly unlikely that someone could communicate such a statement incorrectly, either giving or receiving. The timing of the email meshes with the explosion of Reactor 3, which some had professed to be a Neutron rich, moderated prompt criticality.

            I would put a 95% probability that there were actually 5 acute deaths.

            1. @NP

              You are free to believe whatever you wish. However, please note that the email is a quick summary of a daily call from a staff member to his boss. The statement does not mention who made the statements and does not use quotes. It does not mention death, it says “lethal doses.” Believe it or not, there are many people at the NRC that are not actually trained in radiation safety and even nuclear professionals get mixed up in unit conversions on a regular basis.

              I suspect that someone reported doses that sounded high to the staffer but he could not remember the exact numbers. When he got back to his desk and wrote the summary, he translated that part of the report and called them “lethal” because that is what he thought they were.

              By the way, that same email claims that there is a Z-H (zirconium-hydrogen) fire in U4 spent fuel pool and multiple Z-H fires in other spent fuel pools. Both of those reports have been proven to have been incorrect.

              I could be wrong, but I have been involved in damage control and disaster response frequently enough to understand how communications get snarled up.

  8. “Nuclear energy is not a purely technical issue; if we want to share our optimism about the technology more effectively, we need to understand more of the many layers associated with how others understand and respond to it”

    If you really want to advance the technology, this part of the equation, in my opinion, is actually more important than the actual science. You aren’t selling this technology to the scientific community, as they have already reached thier conclusions pro or con. It is the general public’s attitude towards the technology that will make or break the future of nuclear energy. And, as a few here have demonstrated, having scientific knowledge about the technology certainly doesn’t qualify you as a convincing or charismatic spokesman for the technology. Sociology and pyschology are definitely sciences that must be included in any successful bid by the nuclear energy advocates to convince J.Q.Public that nuclear energy is a safe and viable option.

    1. POA,

      I totally agree. A part of that is yawning when an event like this happens. Yawn, stretch and say pass the pizza please.

      Hyperventilation when a non-event happens makes people think it is really important.

      1. Really isn’t Saturn-V science. All that nuclear energy has to do is strut out and run on its historically verified and reality confirmed record of nil mortality/property damage/environmental impact record including worst accidents, minus all nightmare “what if” scenarios and heebie-jeebies, especially directly compared all other industries over 50 years, period. Any Ad man can say nuclear power should walk away whistling as the superior product — and I bet most of them are scratching their heads at just why the nuclear community hasn’t knocked their doors to help dispel largely philosophical and Hollywood inspired nuclear hang-ups and slanderous hit-and-run FUD. I blame the nuclear community’s senseless plight on its suicidal cluelessness at marketing itself more than what Greenpeace and Harry Reid are doing. Any ex-Amiga owner would fully understand this situation!

        James Greenidge
        Queens NY

        1. ” Any ex-Amiga owner would fully understand this situation!”

          I had that computer. I didn’t buy it to teach me about marketing, but I guess it did.

          I think the best way to sell nuclear power would be to have the people working in the plants sell it. Have the pipefitters, operators, HP techs, etc, each give a short talk. People respond well to no BS advertising.

  9. @ Rod Adams

    Ultimately it is an issue of trust. Upon entering this debate (only recently) I instantly recognized that the masses of statistical data along with the reliability of the technical details – were far far away from my intellectual ability to understand – let alone judge. I don’t know Milly Sieverts from Mini-Skirts. So I search for someone who CAN interpret the data, someone who’s opinion I can trust.

    Normally you trust the people you’re closest to – family, friends, co-workers, etc. .. If they lack an educated opinion, then you move on to academics, preachers, or government agents. If they still seem to be lacking, you’ll trust the opinion of sports stars, celebrities, journalists – even politicians….. It’s a big bad beautiful circus – and the Truth doesn’t always win every battle.

    But the good teacher cannot get angry about losing to a lie, because nobody trusts an angry person for very long. So you’re kind of stuck with a calm and sensible and hopeful approach; becoming an actor who knows his lines well, and is confident with his character. See, it’s like this — if YOU are smart enough to understand the real risks of nuclear energy, then you will also be smart enough to learn the techniques of effective public relations.

    I know you understand this, Mr. Adams, even if it’s only instinctual, because I’m beginning to trust you more every day. But truth be told – I still trust Neil DeGrasse Tyson and Michio Kaku (both not really pro-nuclear) and I’m going to take a closer look at Amory Lovins, while I still have the luxury of remaining agnostic.

    As far as sociologist Kyle Cleveland goes, I don’t trust him. He implied that the activists who predicted a meltdown at Fukushima were eventually “vindicated” by the after-facts. Yet he had earlier seemed to imply that the activists made their predictions via social media BEFORE Tepco (or anyone) actually knew what was going on. I don’t think lucky guesses should count in atomic accidents and horseshoes. I’m trying to contact him for some clarification.

      1. Wow. I never would have expected that from him, if I hadn’t read it in his own words. . . .

        That little bit of plutonium helped us put a lander on a distant MOON for crying out loud! The transit of Venus, the lakes of Titan — a picture of Earth taken through the rings of Saturn. . . . . All that knowledge would have been lost to mankind, because of a zero-risk policy. I cannot imagine a more self-righteous and self-centered ideology than to hold back scientific exploration in favor of perfect security. It’s like a Goldilocks dictatorship and it contradicts the very essence of adventure and discovery. Thanks for sharing that (i guess)

  10. compensation wise :

    “So far, each evacuated man, woman and child have received about $141,000 in evacuation compensation, totaling $12.6 billion. Therefore, a typical family of four has received ~$640,000 in evacuation compensation.” – Hiroshima Syndrome.

    So reading about the “first feature film” on Fuku I had to do a double take:

    “Where is the rice from?” asks her daughter-in-law, who has turned to prostitution to make ends meet after the meltdown at the atomic power plant three years ago drove them from their farm and wrecked the local economy.

    From Japanese film director turns his camera on Fukushima fallout

    Its totally fabricated, but so is a lot of this stuff and the kind of, lets face it, stupid people, who’d accept this as realistic narrative are legion.

    1. @John T Tucker

      There are tsunami and earthquake victims who receive little or no compensation. If they were not forced out by the Fukushima related evacuation, they do not qualify for the funds provided through loans to Tepco that Les has described on Hiroshima Syndrome.

      PS – you really would be more effective if you avoided calling your opponents “stupid.”

      1. Did I ever say or imply there were not. I seem to remember posting the average refugee received in the neighborhood of 30,000/yr compensation at best. If there are people evacuated for fuku that have to turn to prostitution to make ends meet as the article seemed to indicate id like to know.

      2. stupid

        : not intelligent : having or showing a lack of ability to learn and understand things
        : not sensible or logical
        : not able to think normally because you are drunk, tired, etc

        I dont use the word lightly and I basically don’t care what you think about me. If it shocks some to being more reasonable purely as a vindictive reaction to it thats ok too. I know I am stupid and its a word I really dont use for any other issue or issue or circumstance.

        You know, you dont need a stupid person to tell you hiding in the Internet backwaters and shadows, gigglingly correcting a ever growing and accumulating colossal heap of fabricated narratives and outrageous ideas isn’t working. No matter the occasional, rare and sensible perspective that pops up.

        They can turn out garbage far faster than you have time to correct it. Thats another issue with the K. Cleveland piece, the lack of accounting for the anti movement. Most of their claims have yet to be responded to, and when it comes to the record, being right and self correction, TEPCO and the Japanese government at their absolute worst and most stressed times have been far more reliable and honest than the anti nuclear cadre.

        All the while “stupid” including my personal favorite for use in this case, “nightmarishly stupid” could have laid in wait for them to open their mouths again.

        Correct? Perhaps there is a better word??

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