by the Left Coast Rebel
Video of an explosion at the Fukushima Nuclear plant:
STRATFOR.com (trending at Memeorandum) is claiming that the nuclear plant is in "nuclear meltdown" which isn't accurate. The New York Times has details:
An explosion at a nuclear power plant in northern Japan on Saturday blew the roof off one building, brought down walls and caused a radiation leak of unspecified proportions, Japanese officials said, after Friday’s huge earthquake caused critical failures in the plant’s cooling system.
Television images showed a huge cloud of white-gray smoke from the explosion. Soon afterward, government officials said an evacuation zone around the plant had been doubled, to 12 miles. [. . .]
Images on Japanese television showed that the walls of one building had crumbled, leaving only a skeletal metal frame standing with smoke billowing from the plant. The Associated Press reported that the damaged building housed a nuclear reactor, though that report was not immediately verified by nuclear officials. The cause of the explosion was unclear, with some experts speculating that it may have resulted from a hydrogen build-up.
There was no immediate confirmation of news reports that the container of the nuclear reactor itself had escaped damage.
Updated 3/13/2011: Japanese officials admit 'partial' meltdown? The Other McCain links the Washington Post (via Memeorandum):
Japan’s top government spokesman says a partial meltdown is likely under way at second reactor affected by Friday’s massive earthquake.There's a lot more at The Other McCain.
Chief Cabinet Secretary Yukio Edano said Sunday that radiation at the nuclear power plant in Fukushima briefly rose above legal limits, but it has since declined significantly.
Three reactors at the plant lost their cooling functions in the aftermath of quake and tsunami because of a power outage.
Edano said operators released slightly radioactive air from Unit 3 Sunday, while injecting water into it as an effort to reduce pressure and temperature to save the reactor from a possible meltdown.
Still, a partial meltdown in the unit is “highly possible,” he told reporters.
“Because it’s inside the reactor, we cannot directly check it but we are taking measures on the assumption of the possible partial meltdown,” he said.