For decades the fear of drought has provoked San Diegans to look longingly at the sea. We’ve got a lot of ocean — could we drink it? It has been a good question to ask because the Western drought is getting worse, and California still bears the brunt.
The largest water desalination plant in the Western Hemisphere has been built in San Diego. The $1 billion plant will suck in 100 million gallons of water per day from the Pacific Ocean, strip out the salt using an elaborate filtration system and turn it into 50 million gallons of drinking water, enough for 300,000 San Diego County residents.
The 6-acre plant is nearly 35 percent complete. 10 miles of thick pipe will connect it to the San Diego County Water Authority’s aqueduct in San Marcos. The plant, on the coast next to the Encina Power Station, will eventually reach nine stories below ground — the largest and most technologically advanced desalination plant in the Western Hemisphere, said Poseidon Water chief executive Carlos Riva.
At least two more desalination plants are in the planning stage along the California coast. However is anyone going to pay attention to the fact that the Pacific Ocean will each and every year become more contaminated with radiation from Fukushima?
People need water to live. We drink it, we clean with it and we remove our wastes from our houses with it. In California a complex network of pumps, canals, and pipelines hundreds of miles long keep the vital western civilization by the sea alive but it’s not enough as catastrophic drought grips the region.
Contamination of Northern Pacific
Fukushima’s radioactive water release has taken its time journeying across the Pacific. By comparison, atmospheric radiation from the Fukushima plant began reaching the U.S. West Coast within just days of the disaster back in 2011 but we are not supposed to think about that even though it has been reported that the young have already paid a price in terms of premature death.
Every assertion to the dangers of radiation in general and specifically as it relates to Fukushima and its effect on the rest of the northern hemisphere has been denied but what can we expect from officials who think that it is safe to inject mercury (thimerosal) into babies.
Whether dangerous or not, since the disaster occurred in April 2011, a radioactive plume of contaminated seawater has been carried towards the west coast of North America by ocean currents. As of April 30, 2014, some Fukushima-derived cesium has been detected in seawater off the coasts of California, Oregon, or Washington according to the California Coastal Commission.
The leading edge of the radioactive plume appears to have recently reached Vancouver Island off of Canada, and will reach California in 2014, although coastal upwelling could hold the plume at bay for several years. The peak concentration of Fukushima-derived radionuclides is anticipated to reach California between 2016 and 2019 based on the most optimistic assumptions.
Each day, 300 tons of radioactive water is spilling into the Pacific Ocean. The amount in the ocean is growing every day, and ultimately impacting wildlife and our food supply.
The Natural Society writes, “The mysterious die-off of young salmon heading out to sea in the Pacific Northwest, along with far lower plankton levels than normal, have many scientists shaking their heads in disbelief and concern since not one mainstream ‘expert’ has mentioned radiation as a possibility. But sometimes silence speaks the loudest.”
The Natural Society as reported, “A local California fisherwoman just caught one of the biggest hauls of fish in her life – just not the type she was expecting. In her nets, she brought up hundreds of thousands of dead anchovies near Santa Cruz, CA. This is now the third major fish die-off along California coastlines in two weeks. On July 18, thousands of white croakers washed up on Manresa State Beach. On July 25, scores of dead anchovies washed onto the beach at Capitola near Esplanade Park.”
For several years already low levels of cesium radioisotopes from Fukushima have been found in Pacific bluefin and albacore tunas. Even earlier in 2011, Madigan showed low levels of Fukushima-derived cesium in highly migratory Pacific Bluefin tuna, which the researchers determined had accumulated in the tissue of the fish during the juvenile phase of their life cycles in the western Pacific. Tuna, already contaminated with high levels of mercury are now becoming less edible because of increasing concentrations of radiation.
The most recent study from researchers with Oregon State University has affirmed the spills have affected sea life and Albacore tuna in particular. Published in the Environmental Science and Technology the research, led by Delvan Neville of the Department of Nuclear Engineering and Radiation Health Physics of the University, says there are notable effects of the Fukushima disaster being felt by tuna caught off the coast of Oregon.
Radiation from Fukushima is reaching the west coast. However Federal agencies are not sampling at the beach. Washington also doesn’t test ocean water for radiation, said Washington Department of Health spokesman Donn Moyer.
“We know there’s contaminated water coming out of there, even today. In fact, it is the biggest pulse of radioactive liquid dropped in the ocean ever,” said Ken Buesseler, a senior scientist at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution in Massachusetts. “What we don’t really know is how fast and how much is being transported across the Pacific,” he added. Radiation off West coast is expected to double in coming years. Projections from German oceanographers estimated two years ago that radiation levels from Fukushima will cause continued increases in West coast contamination.
Eating and Drinking from the Pacific-Good Idea or Not?
The question is whether it is going to be dangerous or not to eat fish from the northern Pacific and or drink water from desalination plants. Will reverse osmosis in the plant completely purify the water and if so what will happen to the radioactive particles trapped by the massive amount of filters being put into place at the plant?
Concern about radiation contaminating desalination plants is not new. In New York the Indian Point Energy Center on the river in the town of Buchanan, is just 3.5 miles from a desalination plant site, too close for comfort say many residents. Rockland residents’ concerns about Indian Point are justified, said Paul Gallay, president of Riverkeeper, an organization that advocates for the health of the Hudson River and its tributaries.
The aging nuclear plant sits on two active earthquake faults. In the event of an accident that releases radiation, the desalination plant could be removing salt from contaminated water, although United Water New York says it would be shut down if such an accident occurs. Even without an accident, Indian Point is permitted by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission to release into the river small amounts of radioactive chemicals, including tritium and strontium-90.
Within a day of Fukushima One’s March 11, 2011, melt-down, American “first responders” were drenched in radioactive fallout. Sailors on the Aircraft carrier the Reagan were all drinking and bathing in desalinated water that had been severely contaminated by radioactive fallout and runoff and are now paying a severe price.
When it did leave the Fukushima area, the Reagan was so radioactive it was refused port entry in Japan, South Korea and Guam. It’s currently docked in San Diego. The Navy is not systematically monitoring the crew members’ health problems. But sailor Lindsay Cooper now reports a damaged thyroid, disrupted menstrual cycle, wildly fluctuating body weight and more. “It’s ruined me,” she says. Similar complaints have surfaced among so many sailors from the Reagan and other U.S. ships that one lawyer says he’s being contacted by new litigants “on a daily basis,” with the number exceeding 70.
Polar bears along the coast of Alaska are suffering from fur loss and open sores. Starfish on the West Coast are disintegrating into piles of white goo and Pacific Herring are bleeding from their gills and eyes. At island rookeries off the Southern California coast, 45 percent of the sealion pups born in June have died, said Sharon Melin, a wildlife biologist for the National Marine Fisheries Service based in Seattle. Normally, less than one-third of the pups would die. It’s gotten so bad in the past two weeks that the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration declared an “unusual mortality event.”
Despite this knowledge, the government refuses to announce how much radiation is infecting our atmosphere or coastal waters. Whatever is happening now is destined to get worse and worse as each year passes for there is no stopping the radiation leaks at Fukushima.
Can we be relieved when the government declares officially that water exposed to radiation from Japan’s wrecked Fukushima atomic plant will reach the U.S. at safe levels, the chairwoman of U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission, said a year ago as the first isotopes linked to the plant neared the West Coast.
Early this year Canadian researchers reported that none of the fish samples analyzed contained any detectable levels of 134Cs and 137Cs. Thus they concluded that from the Canadian west coast there are no health concerns for both radiation contaminants and naturally occurring radionuclides.
Furthermore they concluded, “As simulations predicted, in the near future, the radioactive water plume could reach the areas where these fish are rearing. Even in this case, it is expected that levels of radioactive contaminants in fish will remain well below Health Canada guidelines for food and likely still below the detection limit of a few Bq kg−1.”
We all consciously or unconsciously choose what we want to believe. The minds of the masses are held in the vicious grip of the mainstream media that declares anything that the corporate world wants us to believe. Radiation must be safe even though every little bit of it increases the chance of us and our loved ones developing cancer because they use radiation (the kind that causes cancer) to treat cancer. We live in a sick world populated with sick people in great part because of the sick ideas of the pharmaceutical industry, which asserts its products are safe even though they kill a hundred thousand people each year even when used and prescribed correctly.
Special Note: Though it might be a terrible idea to invest billions in water desalination on the west coast of the Americas using seawater to power cars and trucks is an idea that is already here.
In a breakthrough that is bound to matter for the future of civilization a company has just gained approval for its ‘salt water’ powered car in Europe. The e-Sportlimousine, built by the German company Quant, runs on an electrolyte flow cell power system made by NanoFlowcell that generates a staggering 920 horsepower, goes 0-62 mph in 2.8 seconds, and propels the car to a top speed of 217.5 mph! This this beauty in action on video. Tesla is investing megabucks in electric cars that depend on fossil fuels and nuclear plants to furnish. Perhaps they are making a colossal mistake.