Accident confirmed at Ukraine’s Zaporizhye Nuclear Power Plant. (Link to Latvia Radiation Spike?)

Colorado Rocky Mountains, USA – Wednesday Dec. 3, 2014

>>> DISCLAIMER <<<

!–> Dec. 17, 2014 – UPDATE:  New info: articles in Romanian literally stated they were tracking ‘a radioactive cloud’ from this accident (!) –> That and more @ (Dec 15, 2014), Was there a causal link between the Nov 28 2014 Accident at the Zaporizhye Nuclear Power Plant in Ukraine and recent Radiation Spikes in Latvia and Romania?  (Signs point to ‘yes’: a cover-up occurred.)

Dec 3, 2014 – Afternoon/ Evening UPDATE.   I’m wondering if the significant spike in radioactivity on the ‘unvalidated’ couple EURDEP monitors in Latvia this past weekend COULD be related to some kind of accident that has just been reported at a nuclear facility in the Ukraine.    

In this blogpost 

  • Google map screenshots of the Zaporozhye Nuclear Power Plant in the Ukraine,
  • Screenshots of some of the first reporting in the press,
  • Some more online radiation monitoring info with screenshots and data of public data sites (Dec. 3, 2014), and
  • For a rough idea, a couple screenshots of current weather maps for Europe,

All part of some “armchair detective work” to figure out if the Latvian radiological spikes can be linked to the Ukrainian nuclear power plant incident, or not.    (To give away my conclusion:  Massive uncertainties, but I can’t actually rule out that possibility.)

Intro

I continued my search to find out more about the rather significant mystery spike in gamma radiation on the coast of Latvia late last week (at the very end of November 2014), which I wrote about earlier today in the previous blogpost,

JELGAVA_Latvia_Dec3_2014screenshotEURDEP

!–> What’s up with (Nov 28, 2014) RADIATION SPIKE IN LATVIA? ‘EURDEP’ shows peak of 600nSv/hr (0.6µSv/hr). Highly unusual for Sea Level.  Does Additional Data Suggest Possible Cover-Up of Radiological Incident?

Something seems a little fishy…

Hopefully this quote is not relevant in THIS case, but, keep it in mind for future reference anyhow:

“When you hear ‘no immediate danger’ then you should run away as far and as fast as you can.”. – Alexey Yablokov, member of the Russian academy of sciences, and adviser to President Gorbachev at the time of Chernobyl [The Guardian, 2011]

NEWS REPORTING on Zaporizhya (Dec. 3, 2014)

CNN: Urgent – Emergency repairs reported at largest nuclear power plant in Europe — Prime Minister: I know that a nuclear accident has occurred (VIDEO)

  • CNN (Dec 3, 2014) reports:  

“[…] Zaporizhya is Europe’s largest nuclear power plant, according to EnergoAtom. It has been operating since 1984, with the third unit brought online in 1986. It has six power units altogether, with a total capacity of 6,000 megawatts.

Zaporizhya is in territory controlled by the Ukrainian government in Kiev. It is about 200 kilometers (125 miles) west of the city of Donetsk, which is a stronghold of pro-Russian rebels that have been battling Ukrainian forces for months in southeastern Ukraine. […]”

“KIEV — Ukraine’s Energy Minister Volodymyr Demchyshyn said Wednesday an accident at the Zaporizhzhya nuclear power plant in southeast Ukraine posed no danger and that the plant would return to running as normal on Dec. 5. “There is no threat … there are no problems with the reactors,” Demchyshyn said at a briefing, saying the accident affected the power output system and “in no way” was linked to power production itself. […]”

“[…] Country forced to introduce power cuts amid short circuit at Zaporizhya facility and falling coal supplies […]  “The accident happened in the third block of the Zaporizhya nuclear power plant in the power output section.   This is in no way associated with the reactor,” energy minister Volodymyr Demchyshyn said on Wednesday. […]   The plant was forced to shut down the affected generator, causing electricity shortages in the surrounding region.  Demchyshyn said tests would be run at the block over the next two days and “by Friday it will be working at full strength”.   Dec. 3, 2014 screenshot of part of page:

  • It’s night time in Europe.  There might be more reporting tomorrow (on Dec. 4, 2014) and beyond.  We’ll see…

NOTICE:  If I don’t return to this topic in the next few days, I recommend you check my Nuclear News sources for the latest.

Public Radiation Monitoring in Europe

Is there a connection between the recent radioactivity spike measured in Latvia and the Zaporizhya nuclear power plant incident in the Ukraine?

My first impression was that they are separate events, but one never knows, so I continue my researching.  I’ll be sharing (in this blogpost) near-simultaneously as I’m researching this question and will offer my tentative conclusion at the end of this blogpost.

What comes to mind immediately is that the radiation spike caused by the Chernobyl, Ukraine accident in 1986 was first observed by Sweden, which sounded the alarm.  The Latvian spikes occurred Nov 28-29, 2014 (with data blackouts after that), and the latest Ukrainian accident is said to have started on Nov. 28, 2014, to quote from the Ukrainian EnergoAtom NNEGC, [my emphasis]

In relation to misinformation distributed by media as to disconnection of Zaporizhzhya Unit 3 the following information is provided: Unit №3 of Zaporizhzhya NPP was disconnected from the grid by means of protections against inner generator damages. The incident occurred at 19:24 on November 28, 2014 and was caused by damage of the house load voltage transformer coil that led to disconnection of the house load transformer and unit transformer breakers.  No radioactive consequences were recorded.  Screenshot of this follows:

I’m just bringing it up, ’cause regardless of what is happening, one thing can be counted on: officials will lie about the true nature of any nuclear accident.  (See Plume Gate’s FOIA-released NRC documents for an introduction to how the severity of the Fukushima accident was covered-up!).   The timing correlation is striking…

I’ll be looking at this weeks weather patterns to see if a causation underlying the correlation can be ruled out.  First: where is this?

  • Where is the Zaporozhye Nuclear Power Plant in the Ukraine?

Zoom-outs:

Zaporizhye_20km_map Zaporozhye_500km_map

A Sampling of Radiation Monitoring Data:

– Ukraine’s map with monitors is, like many countries, quite pathetic.  Nevertheless, you can click on the map and get “the latest public data” from just 4 monitoring points http://www.energoatom.kiev.ua/en/map_aes/ , from where you can get additional local data points:

!–> Screenshot of data (0.10 µSv/hr – a normal level for natural background radiation levels) for the nearest location:

The site in the south (with maximum measurement 0.10 µSv/hr), zoomed in, with the latest (5pm Mountain Time) measured gamma radiation shows a rather broad spectrum of values over a short distance at the same elevation, all the way from just 0.05 µSv/hr in the east, to double that in the northern part of this small area:

Annotated by me with approximate wind direction for measuring time.   Radiation Data:  http://www.energoatom.kiev.ua/en/ascro_zaes/

Annotated by me with approximate wind direction for measuring time. Radiation Data: http://www.energoatom.kiev.ua/en/ascro_zaes/

  •  The weather and weather forecast for Zaporizhzhia, Ukraine [Intellicast] shows these recent (about the same time as these radiation measurements) past observed wind directions, which show predominant ENE winds (towards Romania, if you will).  The only thing that can be remarked about that is that the very lowest value, 0.05 µSv.hr, is the most “upwind” from any of these radiation monitoring posts.   Doesn’t prove or disprove anything, just noting it.

Further observations:

– EURDEP’s monitors show data blackouts and (relatively small) bumps/spikes, about which I’m wondering if they’re all related to the same yet-to-be-reported on incident (in Latvia?  in the Ukraine?).  See previous blogpost for more on the Latvian spikes.  Whether there’s a connection or not, I have no clue about that.  Really impossible to tell for sure from my vantage point here in the Colorado Rockies… ;-).  Check the monitors and Nuclear News sites yourself for the latest.

– Public Radiation Monitors in south-western Russia, due north of the Zaporozhye Nuclear Power Plant in the Ukraine, show no signs of recent radiation abnormalities, as far as I can tell from the monitors I checked (example screenshot):

I’ll leave it this for now.

WEATHER MAPS (Screenshots)

  • Current (Dec 3, 2014) Weather Maps for Europe:   From my METEO page.  {I’m finding that my meteo page is lacking important links… ;-/ When I feel so inspired, I will make some improvements…}

Wind directions and speed (Source: Wunderground, http://www.wunderground.com/global/Region/EU/2xWindSpeed.html), shows not much wind over the Eastern Ukraine, blowing gently from the East-North-East (ENE) direction:

The forecast is for this general direction to hold on for the next several days:

It is currenlty lightly clouded there (SOURCE: KMI (Belgium) http://www.kmi.be/meteo/view/nl/6714746-Wolkenbeelden.html) :

KMI_clouds_dec3_2014image-1

In Jelgava, Latvia, the wind has been coming from the SSE for the past 48 hours, but the ‘past observations’ data doesn’t reach back to Nov 28.. ;-/

Now, let’s see what the radiation monitors are showing roughly downwind from the Ukraine… (I’m using the (undoubtedly censored, but still) EURDEP public maps, which provide, unvalidated radiological monitoring data from most European countries available in nearly real-time” [So please don’t take my out-loud wondering for “factual news”; I’m just exploring possibilities and sharing as I go.]) :

I will check monitors along the indicated areas, and show notable findings, below:

EURDEP_EasternEurope_Dec3_2014_6pm_MT_screenshot_Annot_3

The closest monitors to the Ukraine, in Eastern Romania or South-Western Russia show either ‘all normal’, are ‘turned off’ entirely, or show gaps that may be hiding something.  But there is basically nothing to see.

A bit further west, however, while not as pronounced as the spikes seen over Latvia, there’s “bumps” in radioactivity.  Some of that could be ‘natural’, but that’s not per se the case.  A Selection of screenshots follows [not all from in the “bumps” square on the map above, just random samplings…:

JELGAVA_Latvia_Dec3_2014screenshotEURDEP

Just the graphs, plucked off EURDEP, turned into GIFs:

ChartImg-5.axd ChartImg-4.axd ChartImg-3.axd ChartImg-6.axd ChartImg-2.axd

ChartImg-7.axd ChartImg-9.axd ChartImg-1.axd ChartImg-8.axd

(I’ll leave it that for now).

Tentative Conclusion

There are an awful lot of monitors turned off, showing large data gaps, or brief spikes that cannot be explained by rain-out events (of natural radioisotopes like Berrylium-7 and -10). or sunspot activity (incl. gamma rays). So…  I’m not so sure the Ukrainian government, or the remarkebly silent nuclear establishment (IAEA and negligent cohorts) are telling the whole story.   I suspect there very well might have been a significant release of manmade radioactivity and it is blowing all over Europe this week.  How significant is impossible to tell from these public data.  I suspect the spikes observed in Latvia very well might have their origin in the Ukraine…

But, bottom line:  I don’t know.

Hope this independent armchair investigation was somehow helpful, though.  Peace out.

—- —- —- —– —–

[Last updated:   I made some small edits on Sat.  Dec 13, 2014 during the week this blog was temporarily disappeared (in early-mid Dec 2014) for a more thorough fact-checking.]

!!!–>  More info (link also added at beginning:  Dec 15, 2014:   Was there a causal link between the Nov 28 2014 Accident at the Zaporizhye Nuclear Power Plant in Ukraine and recent Radiation Spikes in Latvia and Romania?

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11 Responses to Accident confirmed at Ukraine’s Zaporizhye Nuclear Power Plant. (Link to Latvia Radiation Spike?)

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