Showing posts tagged Japan


Ground Swaying in Japan - Liquification - April 12, 2011 


Post-quake Japan: 13 volcanoes increase activity

More than two weeks after the triple disasters flattened Japan, the devastated country, while trying every effort to rebuild itself, has to face another challenge—the increased activity of its 13 volcanoes. A Japanese language news article in MSN reported that tremors near Mount Fuji, Mount Hakone and Mount Yake had been felt even until 25 March.

An English translation of the above story said that there is renewed activity of at least 13 volcanoes according to the Meteorological Society of Japan. Shizuoka University’s volcanologist Makoto Oyama said, “As a result of the Great Earthquake, the strain in many regions of the Earth’s crust have been released. “On the other hand, strains have accumulated in other regions and unfortunately the Earth’s crust under the whole of eastern Japan is now in an unstable condition.”



Time for Plan B: Our Civilization Is on the Edge of a Systemic Breakdown

This article about Lester Brown’s book and documentary is well worth reading. It’s an interview with LB and covers climate change, food shortages, Japan’s nuclear problems, political instability, and more. Read the full version here

"How many failing states before we have a failing global civilization?" asks environmental pioneer Lester Brown in Plan B: Mobilizing to Save Civilization, premiering March 30 on PBS as part of its continuing Journey to Planet Earth series. It’s a Gordian knot of a question with no simple answer and nothing but complex, demanding solutions, fearsomely put forth as the fate of humanity totters in the balance.

Based on Brown’s book of the same name, Plan B is likely the scariest horror film that was ever disguised as a documentary, despite its calm narration from superstar Matt Damon. That’s because the acclaimed environmentalist has deeply studied the variety of environmental and geopolitical tipping points we are fast approaching, and found that we’re headed for a seriously dark dystopia if we don’t turn civilization as we know it around, and fast. A catastrophic confluence of food and water shortages, overpopulation and pollution, collapsed governments and communities and more natural disasters than Roland Emmerich can dream up await us on the other side of Plan A, which Brown calls “business of usual.”

full version here


Japanese & US TV news coverage of the disaster fails on several counts

French citizen living in Japan, 200 KM from Fukushima, posts a very passionate Youtube video about the lack of television news coverage in Japan on 03/14/2011. He says there is nothing on the TV except game shows and sit-coms.  He says there is no useful information coming to them about the nuclear meltdowns. 

This is a repost of the video. The original was supposedly taken down by YouTube but has been posted multiple times on the site since then.

This isn’t the only failure in news coverage. This commentary on cable news coverage of the disaster notes the media perpetuating the fear of radiation:

As the nuclear reactor story began gaining attention, all focus was lost and the words “meltdown,” “catastrophe” and “radiation” were tossed around in such a way that it seemed news agencies were willing it all to happen, a rapacious hunger to plant the seeds of Armageddon in viewers’ heads, which of course would translate to ratings.

Thus started the most ill-informed and speculative part of the Japan coverage (which hasn’t improved as each confusing claim comes forth about the radiation risk). In one notable stint, CNN was clearly not listening to Georgia Tech professor Glen Sjoden, who was essentially telling them early on to calm down, that the threat at that point being gravely overstated.

As soon as he was off, they ramped up the fear again – meltdown possible! CNN used Sjoden other times and ignored his explanations yet again. Apparently, the anchors don’t have ears. And, by the way, if the Japanese nuclear reactor situation does go colossally wrong, the end does not justify the means, hype-wise.

The criticism from Japanese residents about the lack of information coming from officials is upheld by this CNN report:

The Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency raised its rating for the most serious issues from 4 to 5 ….

The decision to upgrade the assessment came as Japanese authorities came under fire Friday from within and abroad over the lack of timely information on the unfolding nuclear situation they have battled since March 11.

People near the plant, which is 240 kilometers (150 miles) north of Tokyo, are increasingly frustrated, not just with the prolonged fight to curb radioactive emissions, but also the lack of immediate information from authorities, an official with a city government near the plant said.

"Evacuees, and that can be said of myself as well, are feeling anxious since we are not getting the needed information from the government in a timely manner," said Seiji Sato, a spokesman for the government of Tamura City, about 20 kilometers from the nuclear facility.


Posted at 2:49pm
Tagged news coverage mainstream media US news Japan


Food shelves bare following earthquake hoarding runs - Food Shortage in Japan (by Fallout3Japan)

Hoarders in China make a run on Salt based on perceived Japanese radiation threat

In much the same way that panic has gripped the US as fearful citizens try to buy potassium iodide tablets, CTV News in Canada reports that hoarders in China are stripping store shelves of salt based on rumors that it might prevent radiation exposure:

BEIJING — Worried shoppers stripped stores of salt in Beijing, Shanghai and other parts of China on Thursday in the false belief it can guard against radiation exposure, even though any fallout from a crippled Japanese nuclear power plant is unlikely to reach the country.

The panic shopping was triggered by rumours that iodized salt can help ward off radiation poisoning — part of the swirl of misinformation crisscrossing the region in the wake of Japan’s nuclear emergency.

The rumours have flown widely. Text messages on mobile phones have circulated about nuclear plumes spreading from Japan throughout Asia. Rumours also spread that salt was adequate protection for radiation sickness.

Supermarkets in the capital of Beijing and many cities across the country have run out of salt in the last several days as a wave of panic buying spread across provinces from eastern Zhejiang to southern Guangdong to western Sichuan.

Prices of salt jumped five or 10-fold in southern Guangdong, the Internet portal reported.

I feel like I should remind folks in the US, once again, that there is very little radiation threat posed by this disaster, and the time to be afraid of nuclear fallout in the US is already decades behind us

Consider the history of nuclear testing on US soil. Much worse has already been done in our backyards.

Between 16 July 1945 and 23 September 1992 the United States of America conducted (by official count)1054 nuclear tests, and two nuclear attacks. The number of actual nuclear devices (aka “bombs”) tested, and nuclear explosions is larger than this, but harder to establish precisely.

2 notes

Posted at 10:19pm
Tagged China Japan radiation fear panic fallout SHTF


Pattern Recognition: Dramatic Earth Change - Trying to make sense of odd seismic activity

Large cracks, holes, mudslides, and rifts in the ground have been appearing in several countries around the world since the middle of last 2010. Natural events such as this have happened before, but it seems like it’s picking up recently. We know that earthquakes happen every day.  That is normal. But do phenomena like I have documented below happen regularly?  I just don’t know. 

Scientists will say that these are areas already prone to seismic activity and that reporting is better than in the past. Armchair skeptics will say that these things have been happening all along and that the prevalence of media coverage just makes them more visible to the average person. Doomers will say it’s due to Poleshift and the coming 2012 event.

I don’t know who is correct.  I hesitate to speculate, although I am very dubious about end of the world prophesies based on ancient calendars. . What I do know is that most of these stories were difficult to find and received little to no coverage in western or mainstream media. 

A good place to start would be to research whether the statistics about seismic activity that might cause things like this show it to be average or increased. I looked at the averages for worldwide earthquakes over the past decade.  

From Mar 16, 2011

The US Geological Survey data for worldwide earthquakes from 2000-2011 clearly shows increases, with a few dips and some major bumps, in the past decade. 2007-2008 were especially bad years. There were increases in earthquakes above the 4.0 level likely due to the fact that they stopped tracking them in 2009.

New Scientist, a respected science & technology magazine, reported this in their March 16, 2011 issue

Yet three of these [mega-quakes] - the December 2004 Sumatra quake, the February 2010 Chile quake, and now Sendai - have struck in just over six years. This presents a horrifying possibility: that there is a link between these megaquakes and that, as a result, more could strike.

Most geologists say that the number of megaquakes is too small to be able to make a statistically convincing case for a link. “You will get a lot of different answers from different people, but inevitably the ability of any one of those to convince everyone else that they’re right is going to depend on the statistics of small numbers,” says Ross Stein of the US Geological Survey (USGS) in Menlo Park, California, “and we’re never going to get anywhere.”

A handful, however, feel there must be a link between recent events. “What is clear is that for the 6.2 years since 2004, there have been more great earthquakes around the world than in any 6.2-year period throughout the 110-year history of seismic recordings,” says Thorne Lay at the University of California, Santa Cruz. His colleague Emily Brodsky goes further: “The recent spurt of magnitude-8-plus earthquakes may be an extended aftershock sequence of the 2004 Sumatra earthquake.”

The article goes on to discuss some scientific theories on possible linkages between quakes. Statistically a review of large quakes over 30 years doesn’t show a linkage, but it the argument mentioned above, that reporting has been less in the past and has improved recently, could be potentially used against that study.

One quote struck me from that article:

For an example, Lay cites the 7.9-magnitude event that hit Sichuan in Chinain May 2008. “The 2004 Sumatra earthquake increased seismicity in that area as the [shock] waves passed by,” he says. “Was the 2008 earthquake a delayed, large aftershock, or a totally independent event?”

The trouble is that large earthquakes generate tectonic waves that ripple around the world’s surface and routinely trigger smaller quakes on distant faults, so increased activity in China is hardly a surprise. “If you have a quake of, let’s say, 6.2 or larger, every sand grain on the planet is moving to the music of that event,” Stein says.

I don’t think science always has the “right” answer, or even the best answer for everything. We just don’t know all of the contributing factors. I do think that we should question everything and not simply accept the first answer we are given, no matter how authoritative the source is supposed to be. What I do believe is that our planet is a giant system, interrelated, with may subsystems having effects on the others - Chaos theory

On March 10, 2011 National Geographic reported that scientists have recently found that “sleeping, dormant” volcanoes can wake up in a matter of months when they had previously thought it would take 500 years. Obviously we don’t have all the answers yet.

In the case of Pinatubo, the team discovered that the magma chamber took only 20 to 80 days to reactivate, versus the 500 years predicted by conventional theory. 

At the risk of sounding like the the Doomers I often poke fun at, I should draw your attention to what the University of Ulster’s professor of geophysics Prof John McCloskey said this week  after the recent Sendai quake, as reported by the IrishTimes

“For some time people have been afraid that Tokyo was due, or at least was a high risk area, for another earthquake.

“Preliminary work has shown that possibility has become more likely as a result of the [Sendai] earthquake.”

He has a record of success in being able to do this following the terrible St Stephen’s Day quake in 2004 off the coast of Sumatra. He analysed the fault lines afterwards and, in a report in the journal Nature, said that the stresses had been moved further along the Sumatran fault line.

He predicted that another large quake, probably up to a magnitude 8.5, would occur at a given point along the fault, with the report going out in the journal on 17th March, 2005. Just 11 days later an 8.7 magnitude quake occurred where he had predicted.

Look at the following stories and video. I have only scratched the surface of the coastal issues in Java and Indonesia. There are areas flooding there along the coasts with very little rain. The ocean’s salt water has been dangerously pushing far up into the Dong Nai river in Viet Nam all throughout February and March.

If nothing else it is amazing and pretty scary that this happens - whatever the cause. 

In chronological Order from 2010 - All links are from verified news sources

Massive sinkhole in Guatemala in June 2010

Massive Sinkhole in China in June 2010

Large Crack appears in Michigan on 10/04/2010

A 30 meter deep crack appeared in the road to the border of Indonesia-Timor Leste, in Atambua, East Nusa Tenggara, Java on Wednesday - 2/2/2011

"Mega-mudslide" covering a 250 acres fault area buries 400 homes in La Paz Bolivia on 02/28/2011 [pictures at the link are worth seeing]


Mudslides continue in 7 other districts in Bolivia - 02/28/2011

100 meter wide, 3 Kilometers long crack appears in Puno Peru, not far from La Paz Bolivia, on 02/24 or 25/2011

Several Days later a crack 2 meters deep appears in Ica Peru - 03/02/2011

Hundreds of homes cracked in East Java as earth moves - 03/03/2011 - [video after the link jump]

New fissure opens between Pu‘u ‘O‘o and Napau Crater in Hawaii after earthquake swarm- 03/05/2011

Philippines - Land Cracks and alarms people of Sierra-Bullones,Bohol - 03/07/2011

Two towns on the coast in Demak, Cebntral Java are erased as the ocean claims them - 03/09/2011

A small Bolivian town sees large cracks with underground fires coming out for weeksCochabamba Bolivia - reported on 03/11/2011

Large Crack 20 meter long in Nantou Tiawan on 03.15.2011

Cracks appear in Japan post earthquake 03/11/2011

Sendai Airport - crack follows middle of the road - 3/11/2011

Massive whirlpool off the coast of Japan following the Sendai quake - 03/11/2011

Venezuela highway moves an inch a day after months of land mass moving along a faultline - 03/14/2011

Massive crack opens in Pakistan - March 2011 [look, I know Dutchsinse is a pretty paranoid guy, but he does some interesting earthquake data scanning. I don’t agree with a lot of his conclusions, but the data he compiles is very interesting]


It is wholly wrong to compare the situation to Chernobyl, which emitted a radioactive cloud 30,000 feet into the air for a long period of time. In the reasonable worst case scenario at Fukushima, a plume would only be emitted to a maximum height of 500m so any radioactive cloud would land very close to the reactor. A 20km exclusion zone and a further 10km zone where residents are advised to stay indoors would be entirely appropriate for minimising health effects from direct radiation exposure

Fukushima may be worse than 3 Mile Island, but not as bad as Chernobyl

Japanese earthquake update - Government response

Posted at 9:25am
Tagged Fukushima nuclear Japan meltdown hysteria