UN Reports Thousands of Thyroid Cancers 25 Years After Chernobyl Nuclear Disaster

From VOANews:

Twenty five years after the explosion and fire at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant, a United Nations report estimates the disaster caused thyroid cancer in more than 6,000 children in the affected area.  

The world's worst nuclear accident caused thousands of cases of thyroid cancer among children, largely from drinking contaminated milk, according to a report by the U.N. Scientific Committee on the Effects of Atomic Radiation.

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Request for Input to SRBC's 2011 Water Resources Program

Annually, the Susquehanna River Basin Commission (SRBC) is required to adopt a Water Resources Program that identifies water projects and programs planned by SRBC, federal, state and local agencies and non-profit and for-profit interests to meet various water resource needs in the Susquehanna River Basin.
 
I am contacting your agency, organization or business to request input to SRBC’s 2011 Water Resources Program.  Specifically, SRBC is seeking to catalog projects (facilities, plans and programs) expected in the 2011 – 2012 period.  You can view and download the 2011 Water Resources Program response form at  http://www.srbc.net/planning/water-resources2011.htm .  This form contains instructions for completing and submitting responses by April 1, 2011.
 
As you may know, SRBC relies on the Water Resources Program to implement the 74 actions listed in the agency’s Comprehensive Plan.  While the 2011 Water Resources Program response form includes many actions, you are asked to consider only those that apply to your agency, organization or business for the 2011 – 2012 period.
 
Thank you for your consideration of this request.  I encourage your participation. If you have any questions or need additional information on this matter, please contact Mr. David Heicher of my staff.  He can be reached at  dheicher@srbc.net or (717) 238-0423 ext. 110. 
 
Many government and non-governmental entities participate in SRBC’s Water Resources Program each year.  Should you wish to review the final 2010 document, it is available  at  http://www.srbc.net/planning/2010WaterResourcesProgram.pdf  or by contacting Mr. Heicher for hard copies.

Shooting the messenger

From the Brattleboro Reformer:

If you can't refute the message then try to discredit the messenger.

That's the tactic several Vermont Yankee advocates have taken to impugn the character and devalue the experience of Arnie Gundersen, a nuclear safety advocate who has been highly critical of the operation of the nuclear power plant in Vernon.

The writer of Atomic Insights (atomicinsights.blogspot.com) accused Gundersen of inflating his resume, which states he is an engineer with more than four decades of experience in the nuclear power industry.

Gundersen was a licensed nuclear engineer but has not been recertified in many years, though he claims he has spent 20 years working directly in the nuclear industry and led teams of engineers dealing with nuclear reactors at 70 nuclear power plants around the country.

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TMI: NRC Triennial Fire Protection Inspection Report

THREE MILE ISLAND NUCLEAR STATION, UNIT 1:  NRC TRIENNIAL FIRE PROTECTION INSPECTION REPORT 05000289/2011007

ADAMS Accession No. ML110600907 (PDF)

Vermont delegation to NRC: Don’t delay Vermont Yankee cleanup

From vtdigger.org:

The Vermont congressional delegation today urged the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission to ensure a swift cleanup at Vermont Yankee after the license to run the nuclear power plant runs out.

Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Rep. Peter Welch (D-Vt.) signed a letter that was drafted by Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.). Sanders sits on the Senate panel that oversees the NRC, which regulates commercial nuclear plants in the United States.

The lawmakers called it “unacceptable” that Entergy, which owns the Vermont plant, could engage in “decades of delay” before cleaning up the site along the Connecticut River at Vernon, Vt. “Immediate decommissioning will assure Vermonters that the plant is being disassembled safely,” the delegation wrote. An immediate cleanup and shutdown of the site also would allow the plant operator to take advantage of the skills of many long-term Yankee employees who otherwise would lose their jobs.

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Peach Bottom: Relief Request Concerning Weld

PEACH BOTTOM ATOMIC POWER STATION, UNIT NOS. 2 AND 3: RELIEF REQUEST 14R-52 CONCERNING NOZZLE-TO-VESSEL WELD AND INNER RADII EXAMINATIONS (TAC NOS. ME5394 AND ME5395)

Download ML110590472 (PDF)

TMI: Request for Information on Weld Overlay

Three Mile Island Nuclear Station, Unit 1 - Request for Additional Information Regarding Relief Request RR-10-02, Weld Overlay of the Pressurizer Spray Nozzle to Safe-End and Safe-End to Elbow Dissimilar Metal Welds (TAC No. ME4795)

ADAMS Accession No.: ML110340246 (PDF)

Unit 1 HPCI Inoperable Due to Steam Leak

Event Number: 46644
Facility: SUSQUEHANNA
Event Date: 02/25/2011

"At 2027 EST, Unit 1 HPCI system was declared inoperable due to a steam leak on HV155F002, HPCI Steam Supply Inboard Isolation Valve. Engineering evaluation determined that the valve actuator will not close the valve fully under design basis conditions, due to the impingement of steam from the valve packing region on the valve stem. The penetration flow path has been isolated and the outboard isolation valve has been deactivated.

"HPCI is a single train ECCS safety system, This event results in the loss of an entire safety function which requires an 8 hour ENS notification in accordance with 10CFR50.72(b)(3)(v) and the guidance provided under NUREG-1022, rev. 2.

"There are no other ECCS systems presently out of service.

Unit 1 is in a 14 day LCO 3.5.1. EDG's are operable, and offsite power is normal. There is no increase in plant risk, and the licensee will notify the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency (PEMA).

The NRC Resident Inspector has been notified.

Manual Scram Due to Recirculation Pump Trip

Event Number: 46641
Facility: LIMERICK
Notification Date: 02/25/2011

"Limerick Unit 2 was manually scrammed from 100% power on 2/25/11 at 0910 EST in accordance with plant procedure OT-112 'Recirculation Pump Trip', when both the '2A' and '2B' recirculation pumps tripped. Preliminary indication of why the recirculation pumps tripped is due to main generator stator water coolant runback. The cause of the stator water coolant runback is currently under investigation at this time.

"All control rods inserted as required. No ECCS or RCIC initiations occurred. No primary or secondary containment isolations occurred. The plant is currently in HOT SHUTDOWN maintaining normal Reactor Water Level with Feedwater in service."

Primary plant pressure and temperature is 600 psia and approximately 485 degrees F. All unit safety related equipment is operable and available, if needed. The decay heat path is via turbine bypass valves. There is no affect on Unit 1. The licensee informed Montgomery, Chester, Burks Counties and the Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency (PEMA). The licensee intends to issue a press release.

The NRC Resident Inspector has been notified.

Chernobyl, 25 Years Later

From CounterPunch:

April 26, 2011 will mark the 25th Annivesary of the Chernobyl catastrophe, and for more than 50 years, the World Health Organization (WHO) and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) have abided by an agreement that in essence, covers each other’s back  – sometimes at the expense of public health. It’s a delicate balance between cooperation and collusion. Signed on May 28, 1959 at the 12th World Health Assembly, the agreement states:

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