Today, the scientific journal Science of the Total Environment (STOTEN) published a peer-reviewed article entitled: Radioactively-hot particles detected in dusts and soils from Northern Japan by combination of gamma spectrometry, autoradiography, and SEM/EDS analysis and implications in radiation risk assessment. Co-authored by Dr. Marco Kaltofen, Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI), and Arnie Gundersen, Fairewinds Energy Education, the article details the analysis of radioactively hot particles collected in Japan following the Fukushima Dai-ichi meltdowns.
In spite of a disappointing ruling by a US Judge on Thursday afternoon, February 2, public opposition remains to an unprecedented plan to ship 23,000 litres (6000 gallons) of intensely radioactive liquid from Chalk River, Ontario, to the Savannah River Site in South Carolina – a distance of over 2000 kilometres.
Nuclear engineer Arnie Gundersen of Fairewinds Associates, Inc., submitted testimony on behalf of Mothers for Peace in the California Public Utilities Commission Diablo Canyon Closure case. Fairewinds argues for closure of Diablo Canyon in 2019 rather than 2024.
Fairewinds submitted its comment to the United States Department of Energy regarding its "Consent based siting" process. “Consent based siting” is the process proposed by the Department of Energy (DOE) to locate radioactive waste dump sites around the US. Fairewinds Energy Education believes that such a process is biased against communities struggling financially due to factory closings and the global economy.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has proposed new radiation limits for the public that are at least twenty-five times higher than current exposure limits. These new guidelines would substantially increase the amount of radiation people can ingest the days and years following an atomic disaster. The EPA’s announcement was open for public comment until July 25. This is Fairewinds' brief report on the issue submitted to the EPA.
The Mystery of the Missing Bolts: New York City's Stricken Indian Nuclear Plant, May 24, 2016, Friends of the Earth and Fairewinds Associates
Southern Alliance for Clean Energy's Motion For Leave to Amend Hearing Request with Second Supplemental Declaration of Arnold Gundersen In Matter of: Florida Power & Light Co. St Lucie Plant, Unit 2, November 6, 2014, Arnold Gundersen
St. Lucie Unit 2 SG Tube Inspection Report, April 15, 2016, Florida Power & Light Company
Fairewinds Energy Education has submitted a new decommissioning report entitled: The Nationwide Failures of Decommissioning Regulation: Decommissioning Trust Funds or Slush Funds? to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC).
2.206 "Put Up or Shut Down" Petition filed by seven engineers working for the Nuclear Regulatory Commission who site severe design flaws that require fixing or immediate shutdown.
In this presentation, Part Two: Economics of Nuclear Power, Mycle Schneider, an independent international energy and nuclear policy consultant and lead author of the annual World Nuclear Industry Status Report, provides an economic analysis of the cost of nuclear power including data using charts and graphs.
People today who are familiar with social media think that TMI means “Too Much Information”. But to me, and anyone listening to the news in 1979, TMI will always represent the disaster at Three Mile Island, when the public received too little information, not too much.
Fairewinds’ Chief Engineer Arnie Gundersen used the five minutes allotted to him by the NRC to distill 42-years of nuclear power expertise down to one main conclusion: the decommissioning and dismantlement of Vermont Yankee cannot wait.
Strontium-90 was detected in a well on Vermont Yankee's site today. The spread of strontium-90 into the groundwater was foreseen by Fairewinds in its report to the Vermont Legislature in July 2010. Fairewinds noted potential impacts on decommissioning, and made recommendations.
More than 50 years ago the Advisory Committee ignored its minority members and pushed ahead without rigorous failure-proof containment structures and systems. The Nuclear Regulatory Committee made the decision not to require stronger containments. Japan followed the American lead.
Did you know that embrittled nuclear reactors could shatter like glass? Watch Fairewinds Energy Education’s Nuclear Science Guy Arnie Gundersen demonstrate reactor embrittlement and imagine the shattering glass as a shattering nuclear reactor vessel.
When we think of earthquake damage we think of buildings shaking and crumbling, pipes bursting and breaking. Diablo Canyon would suffer not only these traditional earthquake disasters, but also severe, dangerous mechanical threats. Arnie explains something engineers call "relay chatter". In three short video segments, he shows us what relays are and how a seismic event would wreak havoc at Diablo Canyon causing "relay chatter".
What oversight exists at the nuclear plant nearest you? On today's podcast Arnie, Lucas and Nat discuss the NRC's Fitness for Duty program for nuclear reactor operators, in which workers are periodically tested for mental health issues and on-the-job usage of drugs and alcohol. Fairewinds recently authored a report on the many industry-wide instances of nuclear plant operators coming to work under the influence of drugs and alcohol. Listen to our podcast and read our report to find out what areas of the country are experiencing the most violations, what is the nuclear plant operator’s drug of choice, and whether rates of drug and alcohol abuse have gone up or down in the past five years (hint: they’ve gone up).
Beginning in 1989, United States Nuclear Power Plants (NPP) licensees have been required to implement a Fitness For Duty program that satisfies safety requirements created in the Federal Code of Regulations 10 CFR Part 26.
Watch Arnie Gundersen's presentation at the symposium entitled "Fukushima Daiichi Accident: Lessons for California" on June 4, 2013, and view his slides below. The other keynote speakers of the event are; Naoto Kan, former Prime Minister of Japan, Dr. Gregory Jaczko, former Chairman of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, and Peter Bradford, former commissioner of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission during the Three Mile Island nuclear accident in 1979
On behalf of Beyond Nuclear and other intervenors, Arnie Gundersen provides expert testimony that the Quality Assurance activities of Detroit Electic Co. do not satisfy the requirement of the Atomic Energy Act and its regulations.
Expert witness report examining the licensing basis for First Energy's proposed Replacement Once Through Steam Generator modification to its Davis-Besse nuclear reactor. Fairewinds concludes that First Energy is attempting to avoid the more rigorous, full license amendment process, as Edison did at San Onofre with disastrous results.
Detroit Edison implemented an approach to quality assurance which deviated from the template, and ignored its obligation to notify the NRC that portions of the Quality Assurance portion of the Fermi 3 COLA had to be modified.
This Fairewinds Associates Report on the root cause of Quality Assurance problems identified on the Fermi 3 COL application includes an explanation of why there are two Reports: one based on publicly available information and the other on “propietary” material.
A Safety Review Of The Continued Operation of the Pickering Nuclear Generating Station (NGS) and Proposed Measures to Mitigate or Reduce These Risks.
Fairewinds Associates, in this presentation on behalf of Friends of the Earth, shows that San Onofre was operating outside of its design basis and the NRC had done nothing to address this major violation. The tube failures at San Onofre are the worst nuclear equipment failures since the near miss at Davis Bessie in 2002.
Fairewinds analysis of the triple meltdowns at Fukushima Daiichi determined that other Japanese reactor sites were also in jeopardy because their cooling water systems were destroyed by the same tsunami. In this film, Fairewinds provides evidence that cooling systems for 24 out of 37 diesel generators were shut down by the tsunami and that 14 additional nuclear reactors were impacted. Finally, Fairewinds also recommends that the criteria of the international nuclear accident scale have a Level 8 added. The addition of a Level 8 would reflect the nuclear accident scenario at a multi-reactor site that significantly changes the risk factors to the general public and emergency evacuation procedures.
Using NRC and Edison data, Fairewinds analysis determines that San Onofre had 3.7 times the number of plugged tubes than all the replacement steam generators in the US combined, and that 4,000 tubes show significant wear.
Why did replacement steam generators fail after two years, when the original generators worked for 28 years? This Fairewinds Associates Report for Friends of the Earth determines that a strategic decision by Edison to avoid a more thorough NRC licensing review process contributed to the resulting crisis.
Imprudent Design and Fabrication Decisions Caused Leaks in 2012. Cramming 377 more tubes into each replacement generator than were in the original generators held affected reliability and safety.
The Need for a Thorough Root Cause Analysis Requires No Early Restart. Fairewinds recommends that Units 2 and 3 remain shut down until a thorough Root Cause Analysis determines the cause of rapid tube failures are understood and repaired, reliability is assured, and radioactive releases are prevented.