A report from the UNs atomic energy agency criticised Japanese regulators Sunday for failing to assess and review steps taken at Fukushima after 2002 to protect against tsunamis. The report indicates several shortcomings before the March 11 tsunami.
France 24 19th June 2011 more >>
The operator of the stricken Fukushima nuclear plant halted operations to clean highly contaminated waste water Saturday, only hours after it began, because of higher-than-expected levels of radiation. It is unclear when work will begin again.
France 24 18th June 2011 more >>
FT 18th June 2011 more >>
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Reuters 18th June 2011 more >>
Guardian (Observer) 18th June 2011 more >>
Tokyo Electric Power Co. executives expressed confidence over containing the crisis at its Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant as the utility released a revised timetable for stabilizing damaged reactors, but emphasized the situation at the crippled plant remained serious. One month remains until TEPCO’s self-imposed deadline for completing “Step 1,” which entails getting the reactors in a state of stable cooling according to the timetable announced Friday. Progress has been made in key areas, such as cooling pools storing spent nuclear fuel rods, including better-than-expected gains in setting up a device to circulate water in a spent fuel pool in the No. 2 reactor building. Executive Vice President Sakae Muto said, “We’ll be able to finish the job on schedule.”
Yomiuri 19th June 2011 more >>
A “star wars” inspired defence shield that will alert the US to the launch of ballistic missiles is expected to be operational from a North Yorkshire airbase before the end of the year. The Space Based Infrared System is seen as the successor to Ronald Reagan’s unrealised “star wars” programme, which would have detected Soviet missiles and shot them down using lasers. The new system, which has cost more than $10bn, has taken almost two decades to build and has been subject to numerous delays and cost overruns. The imminent completion of the project at the RAF Menwith Hill base near Harrogate has revived fears that space is in danger of becoming militarised, with Britain in the vanguard.
Guardian 18th June 2011 more >>
Ireland’s unspoiled, windswept west coast could become the focus of a new wave of wind farm construction in the wake of a high-level diplomatic meeting to be held tomorrow in London. UK deputy prime minister Nick Clegg, Taoiseach Enda Kenny and other senior members of the British-Irish Council will gather to discuss a plan to expand electricity grid connections throughout the British Isles. In particular, they want to build new inter-connectors to link the electricity grids of Ireland and Britain in order to transmit power from new windfarms in Ireland to England. The All Islands electricity plan is not confined to Ireland and Britain. The British-Irish Council meeting which will also be attended by Alex Salmond, Scotland’s first minister, and leaders of local governments in Wales, Northern Ireland, Jersey, Guernsey and the Isle of Man will consider a number of proposals to modernise the British Isles’ electricity grid network. Some of these focus on existing sources, in particular onshore and offshore wind turbines, while others anticipate the construction of new forms of energy generation such as wave and tidal power. The islands of Islay and Orkney have already been targeted as promising sites for tidal plants. However, all sites suffer from the problem of remoteness, an issue targeted by the plan to be discussed tomorrow.”Some of the best resources for generating tidal power lie in waters off the Channel Islands,” said Hendry. “But as things stand at present, there is no way to get that power to mainland Britain. We need to look at building a new inter-connector with France, taking it from the new nuclear power station currently being built at Flamanville, via the Channel Islands, to the UK. When the tides are right at Jersey and Guernsey, we could take electricity from their wave generators, and when they are not providing power, take it from Flamanville.”
Guadian (Observer) 18th June 2011 more >>