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by Chris Martenson

"I have said it's worse than Chernobyl and I’ll stand by that. There was an enormous amount of radiation given out in the first two to three weeks of the event. And add the wind blowing in-land. It could very well have brought the nation of Japan to its knees. I mean, there is so much contamination that luckily wound up in the Pacific Ocean as compared to across the nation of Japan – it could have cut Japan in half. But now the winds have turned, so they are heading to the south toward Tokyo and now my concern and my advice to friends that if there is a severe aftershock and the Unit 4 building collapses, leave. We are well beyond where any science has ever gone at that point and nuclear fuel lying on the ground and getting hot is not a condition that anyone has ever analyzed."

So cautions Arnie Gundersen, widely-regarded to be the best nuclear analyst covering Japan's Fukushima disaster. The situation on the ground at the crippled reactors remains precarious and at a minimum it will be years before it can be hoped to be truly contained. In the near term, the reactors remain particularly vulnerable to sizable aftershocks, which still have decent probability of occuring. On top of this is a growing threat of 'hot particle' contamination risk to more populated areas as weather patterns shift with the typhoon season and groundwater seepage.

In Part 1 of this interview, Chris and Arnie recap the damage wrought to Fukushima's reactors by the tsunami, the steps TEPCO is taking to address it, and the biggest operational risks that remain at this time. In Part 2, they dive into the health risks still posed by the situation there and what individuals should do (including those on the US west coast) if it worsens.

Click the play button below to listen to Part 1 of Chris' interview with Arnie Gundersen (runtime 36m:31s):

[swf file="http://media.PeakProsperity.com/audio/arnie-gundersen-2011-06-03-part1.mp3"]

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Or start reading the transcript below:

Exclusive Arnie Gundersen Interview: The Dangers of Fukushima Are Worse and Longer-Lived Than We Think
by Chris Martenson

"I have said it's worse than Chernobyl and I’ll stand by that. There was an enormous amount of radiation given out in the first two to three weeks of the event. And add the wind blowing in-land. It could very well have brought the nation of Japan to its knees. I mean, there is so much contamination that luckily wound up in the Pacific Ocean as compared to across the nation of Japan – it could have cut Japan in half. But now the winds have turned, so they are heading to the south toward Tokyo and now my concern and my advice to friends that if there is a severe aftershock and the Unit 4 building collapses, leave. We are well beyond where any science has ever gone at that point and nuclear fuel lying on the ground and getting hot is not a condition that anyone has ever analyzed."

So cautions Arnie Gundersen, widely-regarded to be the best nuclear analyst covering Japan's Fukushima disaster. The situation on the ground at the crippled reactors remains precarious and at a minimum it will be years before it can be hoped to be truly contained. In the near term, the reactors remain particularly vulnerable to sizable aftershocks, which still have decent probability of occuring. On top of this is a growing threat of 'hot particle' contamination risk to more populated areas as weather patterns shift with the typhoon season and groundwater seepage.

In Part 1 of this interview, Chris and Arnie recap the damage wrought to Fukushima's reactors by the tsunami, the steps TEPCO is taking to address it, and the biggest operational risks that remain at this time. In Part 2, they dive into the health risks still posed by the situation there and what individuals should do (including those on the US west coast) if it worsens.

Click the play button below to listen to Part 1 of Chris' interview with Arnie Gundersen (runtime 36m:31s):

[swf file="http://media.PeakProsperity.com/audio/arnie-gundersen-2011-06-03-part1.mp3"]

Download/Play the Podcast
Report a Problem Playing the Podcast

Or start reading the transcript below:

by Chris Martenson

Noting that the press has largely turned its resources off of the Fukushima complex, and needing up-to-date information on the status of the damage control efforts there, we secured the most up-to-date satellite photo from DigitalGlobe (dated March 31st), which we analyze below. This is the first photo of the damaged reactor site at Japan’s Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear facility made available to the public in over a week. That means you, our readers, are the first public eyes anywhere to see this photo.

Drawing upon the expertise of our resident nuclear engineer and Ann Stringer, imaging expert, we conclude that the situation at Fukushima is not stabilized: Things are not yet at a place of steady progress in the containment and clean-up efforts. It’s still a dance, forwards and backwards, with the workers making gains here and there but the situation forcing them to react defensively all too often.

In this report, we will tell you what we know for sure, what we are nearly certain of, and what we remain forced to speculate about.

Here is a portion of a much larger image (covering 25 square kilometers in total) showing the reactor complex as of March 31, at roughly mid-day:

EXCLUSIVE PHOTOS: Latest Satellite Imagery From Fukushima Tells Sobering Tale
by Chris Martenson

Noting that the press has largely turned its resources off of the Fukushima complex, and needing up-to-date information on the status of the damage control efforts there, we secured the most up-to-date satellite photo from DigitalGlobe (dated March 31st), which we analyze below. This is the first photo of the damaged reactor site at Japan’s Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear facility made available to the public in over a week. That means you, our readers, are the first public eyes anywhere to see this photo.

Drawing upon the expertise of our resident nuclear engineer and Ann Stringer, imaging expert, we conclude that the situation at Fukushima is not stabilized: Things are not yet at a place of steady progress in the containment and clean-up efforts. It’s still a dance, forwards and backwards, with the workers making gains here and there but the situation forcing them to react defensively all too often.

In this report, we will tell you what we know for sure, what we are nearly certain of, and what we remain forced to speculate about.

Here is a portion of a much larger image (covering 25 square kilometers in total) showing the reactor complex as of March 31, at roughly mid-day:

by Chris Martenson
Special Report: Japanese Reactor Situation is Likely Far Worse Than Admitted
PREVIEW by Chris Martenson
by Chris Martenson

 height=In this detailed interview, Chris talks with longtime PeakProsperity.com member Dogs_In_A_Pile, an expert on nuclear energy who has been posting frequent updates to this site covering the developments at the Fukushima reactor in Japan as they have unfolded.

Based on his decades of experience, Dogs provides a detailed overview of how nuclear reactors work and then speculates as best he can (as the world is still dealing with imperfect information on the situation) how the technical situation at Fukushima likely degraded since the 9.0-magnitude earthquake hit on March 11.

This is an excellent discussion that addresses in depth many of the questions asked on this site over the past week: How does nuclear energy work? What caused the explosion of several of Fukushima's reactors? What is 'decay heat' and why is it so important here? What's the likelihood the situation will be brought under control soon? What dangers should – and shouldn't – we worry about?

Many thanks to Dogs for bringing a knowledgeable and rational voice that helps demystify the haze of incomplete (and often erroneous) information that has been circulating in the media around this tragedy.

Nuclear Expert’s Step-By-Step Assessment of the Fukushima Disaster & What You Need to Know
by Chris Martenson

 height=In this detailed interview, Chris talks with longtime PeakProsperity.com member Dogs_In_A_Pile, an expert on nuclear energy who has been posting frequent updates to this site covering the developments at the Fukushima reactor in Japan as they have unfolded.

Based on his decades of experience, Dogs provides a detailed overview of how nuclear reactors work and then speculates as best he can (as the world is still dealing with imperfect information on the situation) how the technical situation at Fukushima likely degraded since the 9.0-magnitude earthquake hit on March 11.

This is an excellent discussion that addresses in depth many of the questions asked on this site over the past week: How does nuclear energy work? What caused the explosion of several of Fukushima's reactors? What is 'decay heat' and why is it so important here? What's the likelihood the situation will be brought under control soon? What dangers should – and shouldn't – we worry about?

Many thanks to Dogs for bringing a knowledgeable and rational voice that helps demystify the haze of incomplete (and often erroneous) information that has been circulating in the media around this tragedy.

by Chris Martenson

Important note: 

It is with a heavy heart that I am now issuing the highest level alert to my readers than I have to date. The threshold for an alert is one or more world events that personally cause me to take action.

I’m making this alert publicly available less than 36 hours after releasing it to my enrolled subscribers given its importance and the speed at which events are accelerating.

The substance of this alert centers on the unknown aftershocks that may result from the world’s third largest economy, Japan, rapidly shifting from an exporter of funding to a consumer of it. In situations like these, we are by definition operating with incomplete and often confusing information, and events are developing more rapidly than they can be fully analyzed and internalized. We regret in advance any mistakes that we might make due to making calls and decisions in this highly fluid environment.


This alert warns you that major world-changing events are now underway and that your personal preparations for an uncertain future should either be completed or take on a new sense of urgency. On the basis of the information contained here and in the past two days of posts, I am personally ratcheting up my preparations, making purchases, and topping off what needs to be topped off.

Important caveat:  At this point in time, I cannot fully support 100% of my concerns with hard data and evidence. Some of what has tipped me into this state of urgency is data, evidence, and stories that I can point to. Some is due to the absence of data or information, the remainder results from watching market gyrations and correlations shift into new patterns, which tell me something is afoot.

I have not been this concerned since October of 2008.

Alert! – Nuclear (and Economic) Meltdown In Progres
by Chris Martenson

Important note: 

It is with a heavy heart that I am now issuing the highest level alert to my readers than I have to date. The threshold for an alert is one or more world events that personally cause me to take action.

I’m making this alert publicly available less than 36 hours after releasing it to my enrolled subscribers given its importance and the speed at which events are accelerating.

The substance of this alert centers on the unknown aftershocks that may result from the world’s third largest economy, Japan, rapidly shifting from an exporter of funding to a consumer of it. In situations like these, we are by definition operating with incomplete and often confusing information, and events are developing more rapidly than they can be fully analyzed and internalized. We regret in advance any mistakes that we might make due to making calls and decisions in this highly fluid environment.


This alert warns you that major world-changing events are now underway and that your personal preparations for an uncertain future should either be completed or take on a new sense of urgency. On the basis of the information contained here and in the past two days of posts, I am personally ratcheting up my preparations, making purchases, and topping off what needs to be topped off.

Important caveat:  At this point in time, I cannot fully support 100% of my concerns with hard data and evidence. Some of what has tipped me into this state of urgency is data, evidence, and stories that I can point to. Some is due to the absence of data or information, the remainder results from watching market gyrations and correlations shift into new patterns, which tell me something is afoot.

I have not been this concerned since October of 2008.

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