Los Alamos & Fort Calhoun Update, July 5

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Los Alamos Nuclear Laboratory, new mexico

Las Conchas wildfire in New Mexico (NASA Earth Observatory)

Another NASA Earth Observatory image of the Las Conchas wildfire

The above two images show the Las Conchas wildfire on June 29. Active fire areas are outlined in red. The top image shows a natural color view of the fire. The lower image combines visible and infrared light to show the area burned throughout the week. In the infrared light, the smoke is a faint blue haze that allows a view of the ground below. The hot fire glows orange, and the newly burned land is dark red. [Source]

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Yesterday, I read that the Los Alamos Nuclear Lab will be reopened this Friday.

From the New Mexico Fire Information website, on the Las Conchas wildfire:

Current Situation

Total Personnel 2,196
Size 127,821 acres
Percent Contained 27%
Fuels Involved Mixed Conifer, Ponderosa Pine. Fuel moisture is extremely low.

Little change is expected in the weather from yesterday. Thunderstorms are possible with the chance of strong outflow winds. East and southeast winds will develop over the fire area today, pushing the fire generally to the northwest. Winds developing after 10 am will push the fire up slopes and drainages, especially in drainages with east/west orientation. We also expect another day of very active fire behavior where open lines exist on any western edges or fingers.

The fire above Los Alamos is active and visible. Containment lines are secure. There are many islands of unburned ground. In these areas, fire backs down slopes, and then makes visible short uphill runs. This pattern is likely to continue until the summer rains extinguish the fire. Meanwhile, with support of the Los Alamos Fire Department, the fire is being carefully monitored.

Fort Calhoun Nuclear Power Plant, Nebraska

From the Omaha World-Herald, June 5, 2011:

Flooded land: About 170,000 acres of Nebraska land is inundated by Missouri and Platte Rivers floodwater, according to the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency. That’s the equivalent of more than 265 square miles.

Dam releases:

  • Fort Randall Dam in South Dakota is releasing water at a rate of about 155,000 cubic feet per second. Releases from the Dam will be reduced Thursday for Army Corps of Engineers officials to inspect repair work that had been done on the structure before the spring runoff season. Engineers want to see how the structure is performing.
  • A similar inspection was conducted last week at Big Bend Dam in South Dakota, upstream from Fort Randall.
  • Gavins Point Dam on SD-NE border — the lowest dam on the Missouri River, immediately downstream on the Nebraska border from Fort Randall — continues to perform well and no similar closure is expected. (Please note that this is completely contrary to the alarming, malicious, and totally unconfirmed rumor about plans to “blow up” Gavins Point Dam, on this blog, June 28, 2011. I’m glad I sat on the story and did not post it on FOTM.)

Meanwhile, the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists chastises the media for their failure to investigate and report on the flooded Fort Calhoun and Cooper Nuclear Power Plants:

Failure of the fourth estate. Newspapers and websites all over the country have reported on the flooding and fire at Fort Calhoun, but most articles simply paraphrase and regurgitate information from the NRC and OPPD press releases, which aggregators and bloggers then, in turn, simply cut and paste. Even the Omaha World-Herald didn’t send local reporters to cover the story; instead, the newspaper published an article on the recent fire written by Associated Press reporters — based in Atlanta and Washington. Unsurprisingly, much of the information in recent press reports has lacked context….

Admittedly, it’s not easy finding information about Fort Calhoun, even if you’re a local reporter without a tight deadline. OPPD press releases and the company’s online newsroom do not provide details about the plant’s layout and components. Some of that information was available before 9/11 but was removed because of concerns about terrorism. In protecting ourselves from enemies, we have also hidden vital information from ourselves. So finding the relevant facts takes some digging and dialing, and most newsrooms today don’t have that kind of manpower. That’s especially true at newspapers scrambling to cover a multitude of flood impacts across the region.

A June 9 report delivered by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), “Information Needs of Communities,” states that the number of full-time journalists at daily newspapers has fallen from a peak of about 56,900 in 1989 to 41,600 in 2010 — fewer than before Watergate.

~Eowyn

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9 responses to “Los Alamos & Fort Calhoun Update, July 5

  1. wha is happening today July 5 2011 There is nothing I can do but at least I will know what is happening?

     
  2. Mad Angel is on FB

    GREAT ARTICLE! THANKS 🙂

     
  3. lowtechgrannie

    I asked someone I know about the Fort Calhoun situation. He’s a government contractor specializing in the logistics of safe disposal of nuclear material. Most of his work is in Europe. He recently attended an international conference with professionals in this field.

    He told me that Fort Calhoun will be okay as long as there is electrical power to the facility to provide adequate cooling. The worst case scenario would be a major power outage.

    I thought a nuclear power reactor was the source of electrical power. Where does Fort Calhoun get power? He didn’t go into details and changed the subject nicely.

     
  4. I am great at searching the Internet and cannot find a single news article updating the power plant conditions in real time and flood levels. It is as if they think no one cares and would rather watch things like Weinergate.

     
    • Same here, good. This is a terrible indictment of the so-called 4th Estate — the media — which is supposed to be such an integral part of a democracy’s check-and-balance system. What a shame….

       
  5. This seems to be common with MSM control-Same thing in Japan-3 months after the fact we will get detailed and streamlined info made for good reading-Like the CEO over in Japan saying”If we tell them there’s radiation on the tea leaves it will just confuse them” Its their checks and were left the balance.

     
  6. consorship – better than the communists did
    thats ure freedom!!
    shut up and believe us, there is no threat at all to the public.
    … we are f***ed up, 1 week after fu*k-u-shima the radiactive cloud brought more radiation to california than to tokio. after 2 weeks it arrived europe. after 3 weeks it came back to tokio. and it is still melting down, at least until the end of 2012 officals say.
    and now, no information for one week. no single update, no information from people living there, what the hell are they doing to block information? i followed the 3/11 event. my intention says me: cooper is melting, calhoun is melting, los alamos is spreeding nuclear dust.
    have a nice conciousness-shift!!

     
  7. sarcasm alert. isn’t it great how obama and the media have been right on top of breaking developments at these two nuclear facilities. and now for the worst environmental president in history an oil league in yellowstone natl park more wars more deaths more jobless more disasters more lies hope and change. ahhhhhhhh i’m mad as hell and i’m not going to take it anymore. as i throw my t.v. out the upstairs window into the alley below. the movie network 1976.

     
  8. oil leak… not league but maybe a league of leaks by the time obama can shift his attention to it. i thought liberals where supposed to be environmentally conscience. and the train wreck known as obama kills more wildlife

     

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