Global unrest going exponential

25 08 2013

I recently came across an article titled “We Are Now One Year Away From Global Riots, Complex Systems Theorists Say”.

What’s the number one reason we riot? The plausible, justifiable motivations of trampled-upon humanfolk to fight back are many—poverty, oppression, disenfranchisement, etc—but the big one is more primal than any of the above. It’s hunger, plain and simple. If there’s a single factor that reliably sparks social unrest, it’s food becoming too scarce or too expensive. So argues a group of complex systems theorists in Cambridge, and it makes sense.

How close to collapse are we getting now…?  The idiots who run TEPCO in Japan are apparently about to attempt shifting unspent fuel rods at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant, wait for it, by hand…….  Now what could go wrong?  They apparently have no choice, the cranes that normally do this work are destroyed, the pool they currently sit in is above ground (now that was clever design..) and may collapse some time soon.

No one knows how bad it can get, but independent consultants Mycle Schneider and Antony Froggatt said recently in their World Nuclear Industry Status Report 2013: “Full release from the Unit-4 spent fuel pool, without any containment or control, could cause by far the most serious radiological disaster to date.”

And Arnie Gunderson talked about a few ways that sort of release could happen.An aerial view shows Tokyo Electric Power Co.'s (TEPCO) tsunami-crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant in Fukushima Prefecture (Reuters / Kyodo)

“There is a risk of an inadvertent criticality if the bundles are distorted and get too close to each other,” Gundersen said.

He was referring to an atomic chain reaction that left unchecked could result in a large release of radiation and heat that the fuel pool cooling system isn’t designed to absorb.

“The problem with a fuel pool criticality is that you can’t stop it. There are no control rods to control it,” Gundersen said. “The spent fuel pool cooling system is designed only to remove decay heat, not heat from an ongoing nuclear reaction.”

The rods are also vulnerable to fire should they be exposed to air, Gundersen said.

Based on U.S. Energy Department data, a total of 11,138 spent fuel assemblies are being stored at the Dai-Ichi site, nearly all of which are in pools. They contain roughly 336 million curies (~1.2 E+19 Bq) of long-lived radioactivity.  About 134 million curies is Cesium-137 – roughly 85 times the amount of Cs-137 released at the Chernobyl accident as estimated by the U.S. National Council on Radiation Protection (NCRP)

And this from RT…..

Even the tiniest mistake during an operation to extract over 1,300 fuel rods at the crippled Fukushima nuclear power plant in Japan could lead to a series of cascading failures with an apocalyptic outcome, fallout researcher Christina Consolo told RT.

Fukushima operator TEPCO wants to extract 400 tons worth of spent fuel rods stored in a pool at the plant’s damaged Reactor No. 4. The removal would have to be done manually from the top store of the damaged building in the radiation-contaminated environment.

In the worst-case scenario, a mishandled rod may go critical, resulting in an above-ground meltdown releasing radioactive fallout with no way to stop it, said Consolo, who is the founder and host of Nuked Radio. But leaving the things as they are is not an option, because statistical risk of a similarly bad outcome increases every day, she said.

And now look at this…….

These are screenshots from

http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2013/08/22/mapped_what_every_protest_in_the_last_34_years_looks_like

This first one shows ‘protest density’ in 1980

protestfirst

This second one shows unrest as of last year

protestlast

But to get the full effect, go to the animation at the link above……  it’s quite extraordinary.  We can now add one more exponential phenomenon to the list….

 

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