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Breaking News: Fukushima raised to Crisis Level 7…Other News Updates/Open Thread

There was just another aftershock in Japan, and from what Kyodo News is reporting, there is a fire now at Fukushima. Also, Japan has raised the crisis level to the highest it can go, a 7.

Japan to raise Fukushima crisis level to worst The Japanese government’s nuclear safety agency has decided to raise the crisis level of the Fukushima Daiichi power plant accident from 5 to 7, the worst on the international scale. The Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency made the decision on Monday. It says the damaged facilities have been releasing a massive amount of radioactive substances, which are posing a threat to human health and the environment over a wide area. The agency used the International Nuclear and Radiological Event Scale, or INES, to gauge the level. The scale was designed by an international group of experts to indicate the significance of nuclear events with ratings of 0 to 7. On March 18th, one week after the massive quake, the agency declared the Fukushima trouble a level 5 incident, the same as the accident at Three Mile Island in the United States in 1979. Level 7 has formerly only been applied to the Chernobyl accident in the former Soviet Union in 1986 when hundreds of thousands of terabecquerels of radioactive iodine-131 were released into the air. One terabecquerel is one trillion becquerels. The agency believes the cumulative amount from the Fukushima plant is less than that from Chernobyl. Officials from the agency and the Nuclear Safety Commission will hold a news conference on Tuesday morning to explain the change of evaluation. Tuesday, April 12, 2011 05:47 +0900 (JST)

There are also reports of a fire, I will update you on that as soon as I can.  In the Fukushima Provence there are some dairy farms that are exporting milk again.  That seems a bit odd to me.

Some dairy farms in Fukushima resume milk shipment Some dairy farms in Fukushima Prefecture have resumed shipping milk after radiation levels in the milk cleared the government’s safety standards. The shipments are the first since the Japanese government lifted a ban last Friday on milk from 7 cities and towns in the prefecture. The restriction was imposed by the health ministry last month after unsafe levels of radioactive substances were detected in milk from areas around the quake-damaged Fukushima nuclear plant. A farmer who owns about 100 cows shipped 1.5 tons of milk on Monday. The farmer says he is glad because the milk he produces doesn’t have to go to waste anymore.

CNN has this video of the town where the plant is located. Take a look at it if you have not already seen it. It is very sad to see those empty streets and the animals left behind. I would embed it but I am unable to…. In other news: BBC News – Belarus: Lukashenko says Minsk metro blast was plot

The explosion happened at the height of rush hour. Belarus’ President Alexander Lukashenko has said a deadly blast in the metro system in the capital Minsk was an attempt to destabilise the country. Eleven people were killed and scores injured in an explosion during the evening rush hour on Monday. “I do not rule out that this [blast] was a gift from abroad,” said Mr Lukashenko, linking it to an explosion in 2008 in which 50 people were hurt. A police spokesman said Minsk had been placed on high alert.  

*Update on the bomb in Minsk:Belarus Subway Explosion Kills 11, Injures 120 Near Lukashenko Residence – Bloomberg They have also found more bones from victims of what the authorities believe is a serial killer on Long Island.  Fox is reporting that one of the victims may have been a child. Long Island Bodies May Be From More Than One Killer – ABC News

More bones were found today along the Long Island beaches and have been sent to the medical examiner’s office to determine whether they are from one or two people. One of the remains is just a skull. Authorities involved in the painstaking probe along the popular stretch of public beach now involves more than 125 state, federal investigators and local investigators from two neighboring counties. Investigators have said they believe that a serial killer was responsible for the murders, and Nassau County Executive Edward Mangano said today that police are looking for “the animal that has obviously taken the lives of a number of people.” But probers now says that they cannot rule out the likelihood that more than one killer will be linked to the bodies which total seven sets of adult human remains, a toddler’s remains and the bones found today that may be from one or two people.

It also seems that the killer has called one of the victims families. Police say they believe that the person they are looking for may have been in law enforcement. It is sad that yet again, prostitutes are being targeted. I realize they are easy targets, but there always seems to be some misogynistic thread running through these crimes. This is an open thread.  I will post some updates below in the comments section when they become available. What are you doing tonight? I am watching the Civil War special on National Geographic.

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