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Latest Featured Reports | Wednesday, July 30, 2014
'Green News Report' 7/29/14
  w/ Brad & Desi
Obama Admin approves sonic cannons for offshore oil exploration; Bizarre weather across U.S.; CO judge nixes fracking ban; PLUS: Neil Young wants your help in the rainforest...
Previous GNRs: 7/24/14 - 7/22/14 - Archives...
'A Kind of Propaganda War'
After U.N. denial, NBC's David Gregory apologized for use of unverified Israeli video claiming to show rockets fired from U.N. refugee shelter in Gaza where at least 15 were killed by Israel last week...
Bi-Partisan House to Obama: Get Out of Iraq
Overwhelming, if largely symbolic vote in the U.S. House, directs the President to pull U.S. troops back out of Iraq. Directive seen as stinging rebuke to GOP war haws in Senate..
'Green News Report' 7/24/14
  w/ Brad & Desi
Breaking: Storm ravages VA campground; New rules for explosive oil trains; Big win against Big Oil in small Maine town; PLUS: U.S. and Rush Limbaugh lead world in denial...
Previous GNRs: 7/22/14 - 7/17/14 - Archives...
Israeli Attack on UN Shelter Kills At Least 15 in Gaza
The strategy of bombing children, but warning them first, will almost certainly result in years of peace and prosperity for the region...
The Good Fight Continues: KPFK 'BradCast'
Brad speaks with John Wellington Ennis, documentarian and activist, on his newest film and his decade-long fight for election integrity...
What We Do Now
"It took one hour and 57 minutes for the execution to be completed, and Wood was gasping for more than an hour and a half of that time"..."Wood, 55, gasped more than 600 times before he died"...
'Green News Report' 7/22/14
Record wildfires in Pacific NW; June 2014 was hottest globally on record; EPA blocks Pebble Mine; CA blocks water pollution; PLUS: To cut emmissions, cut the beef...
Aborted Statewide 'Recount' Reveals It's a Great Time to Steal an Election in California
In the closest election in state history, even a well-funded candidate couldn't afford to find out if he actually lost...
'I Never Realized Voter ID Fraud Had Not Been Proven'
A RW caller's admission to Brad on NC radio underscores unparalleled propaganda power of Fox 'News'...
John Oliver On America's Prison Problems...With Singing Muppets!
HBO's Last Week Tonight offered smarter (and certainly funnier) coverage than you're likely to see anywhere else...
No, JFK Didn't Steal 1960 From Nixon
Another Zombie Myth that just won't die gets knocked down again...for now...even as its persistence continues to fuel false Republican claims of 'voter fraud' even today...
CA Ballot Prop to Overturn 'Citizens United'
Measure calls for Amendment 'to make clear that rights protected by the U.S. Constitution are the rights of natural persons only'...
UK Deputy PM Condemns Israel's 'Deliberate Use of Disproportionate Response'
Nick Clegg calls attacks on Gaza 'collective punishment' that 'incubates next generation of extremists' and 'needs to come to an end'...
'Green News Report' 7/17/14
Australia's RW govt repeals landmark carbon tax; Obama action on global warming impacts; Record wildfire season in West; PLUS: CA gets tough on water wasters...
Kochs Radical 'Libertarianism' Broke KA
More than 100 top GOPers endorse Republican Gov. Brownback's Dem opponent after tax cuts for wealthy have busted the extremist Koch Brothers' home state...
NATIONWIDE STUDY FINDS ALMOST NO VOTER FRAUD
Just 10 cases of in-person impersonation in all 50 states since 2000...
VIDEO: 'Rise of the Tea Bags'
Brad interviews American patriots...
'Democracy's Gold Standard'
Hand-marked, hand-counted ballots...
Brad's Upcoming Appearances
(All times listed as PACIFIC TIME unless noted)
Media Appearance Archives...
'Special Coverage' Archives
GOP Voter Registration Fraud Scandal 2012...
VA GOP VOTER REG FRAUDSTER OFF HOOK
Felony charges dropped against VA Republican caught trashing voter registrations before last year's election. Did GOP AG, Prosecutor conflicts of interest play role?...

Criminal GOP Voter Registration Fraud Probe Expanding in VA
State investigators widening criminal probe of man arrested destroying registration forms, said now looking at violations of law by Nathan Sproul's RNC-hired firm...

DOJ PROBE SOUGHT AFTER VA ARREST
Arrest of RNC/Sproul man caught destroying registration forms brings official calls for wider criminal probe from compromised VA AG Cuccinelli and U.S. AG Holder...

Arrest in VA: GOP Voter Reg Scandal Widens
'RNC official' charged on 13 counts, for allegely trashing voter registration forms in a dumpster, worked for Romney consultant, 'fired' GOP operative Nathan Sproul...

ALL TOGETHER: ROVE, SPROUL, KOCHS, RNC
His Super-PAC, his voter registration (fraud) firm & their 'Americans for Prosperity' are all based out of same top RNC legal office in Virginia...

LATimes: RNC's 'Fired' Sproul Working for Repubs in 'as Many as 30 States'
So much for the RNC's 'zero tolerance' policy, as discredited Republican registration fraud operative still hiring for dozens of GOP 'Get Out The Vote' campaigns...

'Fired' Sproul Group 'Cloned', Still Working for Republicans in At Least 10 States
The other companies of Romney's GOP operative Nathan Sproul, at center of Voter Registration Fraud Scandal, still at it; Congressional Dems seek answers...

FINALLY: FOX ON GOP REG FRAUD SCANDAL
The belated and begrudging coverage by Fox' Eric Shawn includes two different video reports featuring an interview with The BRAD BLOG's Brad Friedman...

COLORADO FOLLOWS FLORIDA WITH GOP CRIMINAL INVESTIGATION
Repub Sec. of State Gessler ignores expanding GOP Voter Registration Fraud Scandal, rants about evidence-free 'Dem Voter Fraud' at Tea Party event...

CRIMINAL PROBE LAUNCHED INTO GOP VOTER REGISTRATION FRAUD SCANDAL IN FL
FL Dept. of Law Enforcement confirms 'enough evidence to warrant full-blown investigation'; Election officials told fraudulent forms 'may become evidence in court'...

Brad Breaks PA Photo ID & GOP Registration Fraud Scandal News on Hartmann TV
Another visit on Thom Hartmann's Big Picture with new news on several developing Election Integrity stories...

CAUGHT ON TAPE: COORDINATED NATIONWIDE GOP VOTER REG SCAM
The GOP Voter Registration Fraud Scandal reveals insidious nationwide registration scheme to keep Obama supporters from even registering to vote...

CRIMINAL ELECTION FRAUD COMPLAINT FILED AGAINST GOP 'FRAUD' FIRM
Scandal spreads to 11 FL counties, other states; RNC, Romney try to contain damage, split from GOP operative...

RICK SCOTT GETS ROLLED IN GOP REGISTRATION FRAUD SCANDAL
Rep. Ted Deutch (D-FL) sends blistering letter to Gov. Rick Scott (R) demanding bi-partisan reg fraud probe in FL; Slams 'shocking and hypocritical' silence, lack of action...

VIDEO: Brad Breaks GOP Reg Fraud Scandal on Hartmann TV
Breaking coverage as the RNC fires their Romney-tied voter registration firm, Strategic Allied Consulting...

RNC FIRES NATIONAL VOTER REGISTRATION FIRM FOR FRAUD
After FL & NC GOP fire Romney-tied group, RNC does same; Dead people found reg'd as new voters; RNC paid firm over $3m over 2 months in 5 battleground states...

EXCLUSIVE: Intvw w/ FL Official Who First Discovered GOP Reg Fraud
After fraudulent registration forms from Romney-tied GOP firm found in Palm Beach, Election Supe says state's 'fraud'-obsessed top election official failed to return call...

GOP REGISTRATION FRAUD FOUND IN FL
State GOP fires Romney-tied registration firm after fraudulent forms found in Palm Beach; Firm hired 'at request of RNC' in FL, NC, VA, NV & CO...
The Secret Koch Brothers Tapes...


TONIGHT: Dave Weigel on the DC Budget Battle; Breaking (& Stunning!) WI Election News; Fukushima Update & MORE!
LIVE! 9p-Mid ET (6p-9p PT), Call-in#: 877-520-1150
By Brad Friedman on 4/7/2011 4:45pm PT  

[Now UPDATED with audio archives below.]

Late breaking news out of Wisconsin, and the continuing fight over a federal government shutdown in DC means we're going to have an even busier night than usual as my week guest hosting on the nationally syndicated Mike Malloy Show continues.

As usual, we're BradCasting LIVE 9pm-Mid ET (6p-9p PT), coast-to-coast and around the globe from the studios of L.A.'s KTLK am1150 in beautiful downtown Burbank. Join us by tuning in, chatting in, Tweeting in and calling in! Our LIVE and lively chat room will be up and rolling right here at The BRAD BLOG, as usual, while we are on the air. Please stop by and join the fun while you're listening! (The Chat Room will open at the bottom of this item a few minutes before airtime, see down below, just above "Comments" section.)

Scheduled tonight (so far):

  • DAVE WEIGEL Slate.com journalist/blogger and MSNBC contributor with the latest on the DC budget standoff.
  • JOHN WASHBURN Award-winning Wisconsin election integrity citizen advocate (and self-professed 'Ron Paul Republican' and Justice David Prosser voter!) of Fair Elections of WI with the latest news out of WI today and on GOP-floated rumors about "fraud" in the Supreme Court election. .
  • TYSON SLOCUM Director of Public Citizen's energy program on the latest out of Fukushima and the dangers and pitfalls of nuclear power and other fossil fuels. Award-winning Wisconsin election integrity citizen advocate (and self-professed 'Ron Paul Republican') with the latest news out of WI today and on GOP-floated rumors about "fraud" in the Supreme Court election. .
  • PLUS: Isn't that enough? Yes, there will be more! Plus your calls at 877-520-1150 and tweets to @TheBradBlog!...

The Mike Malloy Show is nationally syndicated on air affiliates across the country and also on Sirius Ch. 146 & XM Ch. 167. You may also listen online to the free LIVE audio stream at affiliate GREEN 960 in San Francisco or via MikeMalloy.com.

* * *

POST-SHOW UPDATE: Wow. What a show. Especially on Wisconsin revelations tonight. The audio (and chat) archives all follow below...

--- Click here for REST OF STORY!... ---

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With Brad Friedman & Desi Doyen
'Too Much Crazy!' Edition...
By Desi Doyen on 4/7/2011 1:34pm PT  


TWITTER: @GreenNewsReport
VIA SMART PHONE: Stitcher Radio!

IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: More U.S. Chamber of Commerce propaganda to support the GOP v. EPA in the House and Senate; Clean energy v. Oil in the budget shutdown showdown... PLUS: Signs of stabilizing at the Fukushima nuclear plant, as yet another earthquake rocks Japan's devastated coastline ... All that and more in today's Green News Report!

Listen online here, or Download MP3 (6 mins)...

Link:
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Got comments, tips, love letters, hate mail? Drop us a line at GreenNews@BradBlog.com or right here at the comments link below. All GNRs are always archived at GreenNews.BradBlog.com.

IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): Climate change breaks NASA temperature chart; Dangerous new antibiotic-resistant water bug found in India; OK return to Dust Bowl days?; TX worsening drought devastating wheat crops; GOP allows agribusiness to dump pesticides in water; Solar Costs May Already Rival Coal; Canceled Coal Plant's Aging Parts; Right-wing Group Writes Anti-EPA Bills For State Legislatures; What corporations really mean by profit and loss; Should 'smart grid' let smart meters make decisions for consumers?; Clean-Energy Investment Is Placed at Risk as UN Climate Negotiations Stall; Governments urged to move forward at UN climate meeting; Two Major Enviro Groups Join Forces ... PLUS: Boom-and-bust fossil fuels and the promise of cheap electricity ....

--- Click here for REST OF STORY!... ---

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With Brad Friedman & Desi Doyen...
'Cruellest Month' Edition...
By Desi Doyen on 4/5/2011 1:27pm PT  


TWITTER: @GreenNewsReport
VIA SMART PHONE: Stitcher Radio!

IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: Breaking: 'Catastrophic' sewage spill in TN; Running out of ideas: Japan dumps tons of radioactive water into the ocean as their nuclear nightmare continues to continue; The one year anniversary of the Upper Big Branch Mine Disaster in WV; Guess what's the fastest growing sector of the economy? (hint: that big glowing ball in the sky) ... PLUS: Transocean execs recieve safety bonuses --- less than a year after 11 men died on their rig in the Gulf ... All that and more in today's Green News Report!

Listen online here, or Download MP3 (6 mins)...

Link:
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Got comments, tips, love letters, hate mail? Drop us a line at GreenNews@BradBlog.com or right here at the comments link below. All GNRs are always archived at GreenNews.BradBlog.com.

IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): Climate deniers' review supports scientific consensus; Sustainability is winning over CEOs; Coal power industry’s deceptive attack on EPA; Coal plants don’t create the jobs they promise: study; Saving bats could prevent huge U.S. farming losses; Future of Pennsylvania is a dystopian wasteland; Water utilities failed to alert public to likely carcinogen; Study: many Quebec worksites contains high levels of asbestos; Right-wing Group Writes Anti-EPA Bills For State Legislatures; Almost Two Dozen Members Of Congress Get Farm Subsidies; Rep. Praises Excessive CEO Compensation; Skeptic Fest Kind of a Let Down for Deniers; The Truth, Still Inconvenient; Confronting climate collapse ... PLUS: Science bites climate skeptics in the ass on the House floor ....

--- Click here for REST OF STORY!... ---

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PLUS: Rep. Hank Johnson (D-GA) my guest on tonight's 'Malloy'...
By Brad Friedman on 4/4/2011 2:11pm PT  

While prepping for tonight's Mike Malloy Show (which I will be busy guest hosting all week), here are just a few of the items which caught my eye so far today...in no particular order...

  • Record amounts of cash being spent by labor unions and the (supposedly grass-roots) "Tea Party" on tomorrow's Supreme Court election in Wisconsin, as the race between the unabashedly pro-Walker Justice David Prosser and Asst. Attorney General JoAnne Kloppenburg has turned into a proxy battle between the two clashing ideologies right now in WI. A defeat of Prosser would tilt the court's 4-3 majority from Right-leaning to not Right-leaning. The race is also seen as a bellwether for upcoming recall elections of GOP state Senators likely to occur there in the near future, as Ernie Canning reported on earlier today at The BRAD BLOG.
  • Nuclear triage. Workers at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant in Japan are dumping 11.5 tons of "low-level" radioactive water into the ocean to make room in filled storage containers for the more radioactive water leaking from reactor Unit 2. They say they have "no choice," but to dump that water (with radiation levels 100 times over the legal limit) as they must continue injecting new water to cool the plant's four crippled reactors, even as the radiated water floods out. Over the weekend, workers were unsuccessful in their attempt to use polymer, sawdust and newspaper (BP "JunkShot" anyone?!) to plug an 8 inch crack in a flooded tunnel at Unit 2 said to be gushing highly radioactive water, at 100,000 times legal levels, into the ocean.
  • A sweeping new election law in Florida is working its way through the GOP-controlled state legislature along predictably partisan lines, just in time for the 2012 Presidential election there. Some of the proposed changes will make it much more difficult for non-partisan voter registration groups, such as the League of Women Voters, to do their work, and will likely lead to a huge increase in "provisional" (and, therefore, frequently uncounted) ballots. Leon County's highly-respected Supervisor of Elections Ion Sancho has called the bill "a travesty".
  • Former U.S. State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley --- recently forced to step down for referring to the treatment of alleged WikiLeaks leaker Bradley Manning as "stupid" --- compares WikiLeaks to the New York Times. The paper's Editor-in-Chief, who has been bashing Julian Assange and WikiLeaks themselves of late, even though the "paper of record" has written hundreds of stories based on WikiLeaks documents, will not be happy. Good. (Coverage at RAW STORY courtesy of BRAD BLOG alum David Edwards.)
  • Even Republican state Senators in Maine are beginning to become uncomfortable with the radical statements and extremist behavior of the state's new GOP Governor Paul LePage and are asking him to "tone it down". Beginning to see the writing on the wall, boys?

So what's on your radar?

In addition to some of the above possibly coming up for discussion tonight, we will definitely be discussing the U.S. Chamber Plot (which was to have targeted, among others, myself and my family) with my guest U.S. Rep. Hank Johnson (D-GA) who is trying to see some accountability in that horrific affair after House Republicans refused his request for investigative hearings into the matter.

Please tune in at 6p PT (9p ET) tonight --- and all week! We'll have live listening links and a lively chat room right here at The BRAD BLOG during those hours as usual!

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By Brad Friedman on 3/30/2011 6:44pm PT  

Today on my Wednesday show on KPFK (L.A.'s Pacifica Radio affiliate) we covered - guess what?! --- the latest news on the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster. Desi Doyen, my partner on the Green News Report, joins me for the latest.

Also, a very few minutes (never enough time on a 30 minute show --- have to figure out how to do these!) on Diebold's touch-screen machines now being sold for pennies on the dollar at eBay, just in time for 2012, and a bit on the latest Republican voter fraud criminal, potential 2012 Presidential contender Jon Huntsman, Jr. of Utah.

MP3 Download or listen online below [appx 28 mins]...

P.S. I should probably come up with a name for this show. Anybody have any good ideas?

P.P.S. It's no April Fools Joke! I'll be guest-hosting the nationally syndicated Mike Malloy Show again for a week starting this Friday, weeknights through next Friday (4/1 - 4/8). We'll be running our live chat rooms right here each night while the show is live from 6pm - 9pm PT (9pm - Mid ET), so please stop on by and say hey!. We'll also have links to live listening streams right here if you're not lucky enough to get Mike's show on the public airwaves where you live! Don't miss one thrilling episode!

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PLUS: A glimpse at living conditions for the heroic plant workers...
UPDATES: Sea water radiation spikes again; TEPCO to improve working conditions; Co. president now hospitalized...
By Brad Friedman on 3/29/2011 7:15pm PT  

As we noted in today's Green News Report for radio, Japan's Prime Minister Naoto Kan told Parliament on Tuesday that the country remains on "maximum alert" in regard to the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear crisis as Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO) workers and members of the country's Self-Defense Force continue to struggle heroically to prevent complete meltdowns at four of the plant's six reactors. They were each knocked out of commission by the March 11th magnitude 9.0 earthquake and subsequent tsunami.

Kan was, for the first time, publicly critical of TEPCO's inadequate safety measures for the plant where, as AP detailed in an investigative report on Sunday, the company had "dismissed important scientific evidence and all but disregarded 3,000 years of geological history," when planning safe-guards against tsunamis there.

"It's undeniable their assumptions about tsunamis were greatly mistaken," Kan explained on Tuesday. Engineers had designed the plant to withstand waves of up to 18 feet, while the wave that swamped the nuclear plant knocking out power and flooding back-up diesel generators in the basement was believed to be more than 40 feet high...

--- Click here for REST OF STORY!... ---

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Plant operator apologizes, again, as AP reports the company 'all but disregarded 3,000 years of geological history' in designing safe-guards at their Daiichi nuclear reactors...
By Brad Friedman on 3/27/2011 11:55pm PT  

"The number is not credible," Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) spokesman Takashi Kurita told reporters on Monday in Japan, apologizing for the error. "We are very sorry."

Kurita was referring to their alarming report on Sunday night (local time) that radiation from iodine-134 in water of the basement of the turbine building at Fukushima Daiichi's Unit 2 reactor was 10 million times higher than the normal level, leading workers to another hasty evacuation of the plant. That number, Kurita explained, turned out to have been an incorrect reading.

But just when you thought it was safe to go back into the water...Turns out the radiation levels in the flooded water at Unit 2 were actually "only" 100,000 times safe levels.

Mark McKinnon, the East Asia correspondent for Canada's The Globe and Mail may have said it best when he tweeted: "Congrats to TEPCO for finding a way to make radiation '100,000 times normal' sound almost like good news."

And with that, TEPCO confirmed the radioactive water has been detected in all four of the plant's six troubled reactors. It's "only" 10,000 times higher than normal at the those other reactor buildings...

--- Click here for REST OF STORY!... ---

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By Brad Friedman on 3/27/2011 3:09pm PT  

Just one sign of hope among many more of sheer despair from The Atlantic's amazing photo essay, two weeks after Japan's great earthquake...

At left, a road in Naka, running between Tokyo and the Ibaraki prefecture, as photographed on March 11. At right, the same 150-meter section of road fully restored just six days later on March 17.

* * *

A few new developments over the weekend at Fukushima. Thankfully, none of them explosive. Will try to do a quickie update with those new items later tonight if possible. For now, our last update on the Fukushima nuclear crisis is still largely up-to-date and remains operative, in general. Have been covering new developments all weekend, as they happen, via Twitter, however, if you'd like to check that in the short term.

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Rupture feared; Workers contaminated; Evacuations 'recommended'
PLUS: German study uses French data to corroborate findings from Austrian, U.S. scientists, suggesting Fukushima disaster should be reclassified as 'level 7' accident, on par with Chernobyl...
By Brad Friedman on 3/25/2011 6:20pm PT  

As we noted was likely to happen just after posting last night's update on the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster, the "calm" over the last day or two that we reported was somewhat broken shortly thereafter. Japan's Prime Minister Naoto Kan took to the air for a rare press conference to discuss the situation at the crippled nuclear plant, and to mark the two weeks which have passed since an unprecedented, three-prong earthquake/tsunami/nuclear disaster rocked the country.

Kan described the situation at Fukushima as "very grave and serious", adding, "we are not in a position where we can be optimistic. We must treat every development with the utmost care."

He did not, however, offer much in the way of new information. In the meantime, other government officials have now recommended (but not ordered) that those living between 20 and 30 kilometers from the plant voluntarily leave the area. They stress that the new recommendations are due to the difficulty in supplying food and other resources to the area, not because of an increase in radiation levels.

Last week, those living within 20 kilometers of the plant were forced to evacuate from that "exclusion zone", and those within 20 to 30km of the plant were instructed to stay indoors to avoid radioactive fallout. The U.S. government has recommended a larger exclusion zone of 80 kilometers (50 miles) around the plant, though Japan has not felt it necessary to widen their own mandatory exclusion zone.

The most noteworthy hard news development since our report yesterday is the speculation --- and yes, we'll still call it speculation until there is hard confirmation --- that the containment vessel at Unit 3 has ruptured in some fashion, and that a meltdown may be occurring in the core of the reactor. Those details seem to be largely speculative still at this hour, based on the investigation into what caused the water at the reactor building to be as radioactive as it was to lead to "beta burns" on the feet and ankles of three workers yesterday who stepped in water while trying to restore electricity to the unit. Two of them were hospitalized. (See dispiriting photo at top of this article.)

Whether the extraordinarily high levels of radiation in the water is coming from a crack in the steel containment vessel housing the reactor core there, or from water leaking out of the spent fuel pool at Unit 3 --- or even from something else --- doesn't seem to be conclusively known at this point. But the radiation in the water was reportedly 10,000 times the "normal" limit, with some reports pegging the radiation at 100,000 times higher.

That's not the only disturbing news, however, as we now have more scientists ringing in on the data we discussed in detail yesterday from Austrian researchers suggesting that some 50% of the radioactive cesium-137 that spewed from Chernobyl in 1986 has already been emitted to surrounding areas in Japan from one or more of the crippled reactors at Fukushima...

--- Click here for REST OF STORY!... ---

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By Brad Friedman on 3/25/2011 2:24pm PT  

I just got off the air after doing two segments on the nationally syndicated Randi Rhodes Show, guest-hosted today by my pal Nicole Sandler of RadioOrNot.com. We discussed, as you may have guessed, the latest news (and politics) out of the continuing Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster in Japan, and the effect it may (or may not) have on the supposed "nuclear renaissance" previously scheduled here in the U.S.

In addition to summarizing some of the information from our latest detailed report on Fukushima last night, including the news we detailed about several independent scientists asserting that some 50% of the dangerous, radioactive cesium-137 emitted at Chernobyl twenty-five years ago has already leaked out of Fukushima, there are several new details breaking today. Some of them I mentioned quickly on the show. I will try to round up those, and several other new details, of course, in a new article here in a bit.

Until then, here's the audio of me and Nicole on Randi's show just now...

MP3 Download, or listen online below [appx 18 mins]...

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Progress, stabilization continues, as new data suggest 50% of the radioactive cesium released by Chernobyl may have already been released by Daiichi's crippled reactors...
By Brad Friedman on 3/24/2011 8:02pm PT  

We're just a day or so from the two week mark since disaster struck Japan on March 11th. Estimates now are that the death toll is likely to top more than 27,000 people killed in the great Tohoku Earthquake and its subsequent tsunami (with a peak wave now estimated to have 77 feet at its highest.)

Some quick math comparing the relative populations of Japan to the U.S. suggest that, had such a disaster struck this country, some 68,000 lives would have been lost in a single day. To further appreciate the size of Japan's disaster, the cost of damage is estimated to be around $300 billion. In the U.S., the cost of the damage wrought by Hurricane Katrina, one of our greatest disasters, is estimated to be "only" around $81 billion, according to Reuters.

Friday is already well under way at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, and reports last night and today suggest a calm, of sorts, at least in regard to the chain of continuing disasters we've seen there over much of the last two weeks. Though, like the photo that opens this article above, that calm may mask other problems, or be shattered in an instant, as has frequently been the case just after we post one of these "things seem to be stabilizing" articles.

Nonetheless, there does seem to be some stabilization at Fukushima's Daiichi power plant and its six troubled reactors at this moment, even as three plant workers were contaminated after stepping into 30 centimeters of radioactive water yesterday (two were sent to the hospital with burns on their skin as the radiation they came into contact with is said by TEPCO to have been 10,000 times normal levels); irradiated tap water worries ease somewhat in Tokyo, but spread to neighboring prefectures; and as scientists grapple with attempting to determine the full extent of the damage at the nuclear plant and the radiation dangers to the rest of the country, and across the globe, as data now suggests releases of dangerous radioactive cesium-137 have so far reached approximately 50% of that released at Chernobyl twenty-five years ago next month.

But first, before some of that gloomier news below, a (happily) very quick update on the latest status of each of the six crippled nuclear reactors...

--- Click here for REST OF STORY!... ---

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With Brad Friedman & Desi Doyen...
Continuing Coverage: Disaster in Japan...
By Desi Doyen on 3/24/2011 1:35pm PT  


TWITTER: @GreenNewsReport
VIA SMART PHONE: Stitcher Radio!

IN TODAY'S RADIO REPORT: Update on Japan's nuke crisis: Tap water warning lifted for Tokyo infants, but spreading elsewhere; Workers at stricken plant hospitalized for radiation exposure; Nukes now less popular in the US (for some reason); King crab invasion at the South Pole; PLUS: Japanese villages struggle to maintain tradition amidst disaster... All that and more in today's Green News Report!...

Listen online here, or Download MP3 (6 mins)...

Link:
Embed:

Got comments, tips, love letters, hate mail? Drop us a line at GreenNews@BradBlog.com or right here at the comments link below. All GNRs are always archived at GreenNews.BradBlog.com.

IN 'GREEN NEWS EXTRA' (see links below): Head exploder: GOPer wants creationism taught in school; WorldWaterDay: Which nations are most at risk?; BP Oil Disaster: Pipe piece caused blowout preventer failure; Google Maps now displaying EV charging stations; GA tree farm re-establishing American Chestnut; USDA gives GM crops boost over organics; Road salt killing Twin Cities' lakes; EU Chief: French GM maize ban illegal; HUGE lease sale for WY coal; Lead, chemicals taint some urban gardens; EPA, DOJ sue MI's largest coal plant; Canada is getting warmer: study ... PLUS: MacGyver It: $3 Emergency Solar-Powered Radio Made With an Altoids Tin! ....

--- Click here for REST OF STORY!... ---

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'Neutron beams,' water 'panic,' black smoke and the responses from TEPCO, the government and the people of Japan, LIVE from Tokyo...
By Brad Friedman on 3/23/2011 6:16pm PT  

Today on my show on KPFK (L.A.'s Pacifica Radio affiliate), we covered the latest news out of Japan's Fukushima Daiichi nuclear crisis, recent setbacks, and the reports of radioactive iodine at dangerous levels to infants now discovered in Tokyo.

We followed on The BRAD BLOG's earlier report today, updated with new details from Desi Doyen in studio, and then live from Tokyo in an interview with Voice of America's VOA News' Northeast Asia Bureau Chief, Steve Herman.

Herman, who has been reporting from the Fukushima prefecture and in Tokyo since the March 11 quake and tsunami, brings us up to date with the latest on Friday morning in Japan: including news on "panic" buying of water in Tokyo; reports of "neutron beams" --- yes, "neutron beams" --- seen near the crippled power plant, as indications that nuclear fission may be occurring within the damaged fuel rods at one or more of the reactors; the often slow, sometimes contradictory information being given by the Japanese government and Tokyo Electric Power Co. (TEPCO), and whether it is to be trusted; and the way Japanese citizens from Fukushima to Tokyo are handling all of the "fallout" in the wake of this extraordinary, and ongoing disaster.

MP3 Download, or listen online below... [appx 27 mins]...

* * *

NOTE: If you missed my KPFK interview last week with BBC journalist Greg Palast on TEPCO's plan to build two new nuclear reactors on the Gulf Coast of Texas, it's right here...

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By Brad Friedman on 3/23/2011 2:44pm PT  

The first photos of the so-called "Fukushima Fift,y, the "anonymous band of lower and mid-level managers" (as described by the Daily Mail today in their photo essay) who stayed at the crippled Fukushima Daiichi plant last week, as the rest of the workers were evacuated when radiation had reached record levels there, have now been published by AP.

"Despite sweltering heat from the damaged reactors, they must work in protective bodysuits to protect their skin from the poisonous radioactive particles that fill the air around them," the Daily Mail writes, in its heartbreaking piece, "But as more radiation seeps into the atmosphere minute by minute, they know this job will be their last."

Workers were again evacuated from the Fukushima reactors 3 and 4 late on Thursday (late Wednesday US time), after black smoke once again began to emanate from Unit 3, where a dangerous mix of both uranium and plutonium fuel the reactor, as well as sit in largely unprotected spent fuel ponds in the same damaged building. The roof and walls were blown off of Unit 3 last week after venting of radioactive steam in the reactor led to a hydrogen explosion.

News reports today say that the black smoke, the cause of which is still unknown, has dissipated a bit at Unit 3, and this quick summary of the reactors' status at Fukushima (March 23, 20:00 UTC) from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) --- which has not always been as up to date as some of the actual news sources on the ground --- suggests workers have now returned to the plant.

"Crews continued today to use a concrete pump truck to deliver high volumes of water into the Unit 4 spent fuel pool, where there are concerns of inadequate water coverage over the fuel assemblies," according to the IAEA.

The biggest news last night was the announcement by the Tokyo Metropolitan Government that radioactive iodine levels in the city's municipal tap water has now increased to levels that are no longer safe for infants. That, according to VOA News' Steve Herman latest report (as well as other sources in Tokyo), has led to a "panic" and a run on bottled water at stores, many of which have now run out entirely.

As Herman reports:

City officials say the affected downtown facility supplies much of the tap water for Japan's capital and five suburban districts. They say the level recorded in the water, drawn from local rivers, is nearly double that considered safe for infants to drink, but still within limits acceptable for adults to ingest.
...
The announcement immediately prompted panic. Citizens began buying huge amounts of bottled water in Tokyo, with some purchasing it by the boxes.

Japan's government quickly asked the public to refrain from excessive purchases of water and said it is looking at ways to provide pure water to families with infants in the Tokyo Metropolitan area.

Beyond that, despite those setbacks at this hour, the status at the Fukushima Daiichi plant seems to be largely in the same place as it was during our previous update yesterday, as lights are slowly coming back on at the various units now that power has been restored to all of them from the grid. But pumping and cooling equipment continues to be malfunctioning in all but the 5 and 6 units at the plant, so work continues to pump water in hopes of keeping down temperatures and radiation at Units 1 to 4.

* * *

NOTE: We will be interviewing, Voice of America's Northeast Asia Bureau Chief Steve Herman --- who has been in both the Fukushima prefecture and Tokyo over the past 13 days since Japan's 9.0 earthquake and ensuing tsunami --- on the latest news out of Fukushima and Tokyo, later today during our show on Los Angeles' Pacifica Radio affiliate, KPFK 90.7FM at 3:30pm PT (6:30pm ET). You can listen live online at KPFK.org, and we'll try to post the full show later on this evening at The BRAD BLOG.

UPDATE 6:39pm PT: My KPFK interview with Herman, live from Tokyo, including the latest news on: 'Neutron beams', water 'panic', black smoke and the responses from TEPCO, the government and the people of Japan, is now posted here...

ReddIt this story!



By Brad Friedman on 3/23/2011 8:05am PT  

--- Click here for REST OF STORY!... ---

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