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Entries in Water Pumps (2)

Tuesday
Feb072012

Mermaids Blamed for Stalled Water Projects in Zimbabwe

ChinaFotoPress/Getty Image(MUTARE, Zimbabwe) -- A Zimbabwean Water Resources Minister stunned fellow legislators when he blamed mermaids for two incomplete water dam projects.

Samuel Sipepa Nkomo said the mythical sea creatures were to blame for the delay in dam projects in Gokwe and Manicaland at a Senate Committee meeting, the Daily Mail reports. Nkomo said mermaids were scaring the workers away from work sites and the only way to appease them was to brew "tradtional beer."

In a country with both Christian and animistic beliefs, the myth of mermaids, or water spirits, is a common cultural belief. The Minister for Local Government, Rural and Urban Development, Ignatius Chombo, also believes in mermaids because he agreed with Nkomo at the meeting.

The reservoirs, when completed, will aid in water supply and irrigation projects for the landlocked nation.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Mar172011

Japan Nuclear Crisis: Workers Fail to Stabilize Plant

Sankei via Getty Images(TOKYO) --The Japanese are looking to the U.S. for help after frantic efforts to cool the overheating Fukushima Daiichi nuclear reactors and fuel ponds have failed to bring the plant under control.

There is hope that water pumps the U.S. is sending could help to avert disaster.

The entire crisis began when the plant lost power after last week's 9.0 earthquake and tsunami. Plant operators have now connected a new power line that could restore electricity. However, if the Japanese flip the switch and the critical water pumps that cool the reactors do not work, the American pumps may come to the rescue.

The Pentagon has shipped in the pumps, but no U.S. personnel. Japanese workers will risk their lives to operate them. The pumps were not shipped in earlier because the Japanese had not requested them.

The power line, if it works, might help in the effort to cool the reactors, but not the fuel ponds.

"From what I see they are working to get electricity back to the site so that they can restart the backup cooling pumps. If this happens then that would be good news for the reactors themselves," Kirby Kemper, a nuclear physicist and professor at Florida State University, said. "As far as the holding ponds are concerned, you probably also need to get some boron-loaded fluid in there [if] you think that any of the rods have melted through and released material, so that there is no danger of having fissions from the clump of material falling to the bottom of the tank."

On Thursday, in new video, close-ups of reactors three and four were visible for the first time. Reactor three was charred and billowing steam and the walls of reactor four were blown out.

One U.S. official told ABC News the most serious problem was the spent fuel rods at reactor four, which are extremely hot and "probably close to a crisis situation."

The water in the pool is desperately low, and without water, the rods could ignite and fill the sky with radioactive smoke.

The International Atomic Energy Agency said at a press conference Thursday that the situation at the plant remains "serious" but has not worsened since yesterday.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio







ABC News Radio