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Over the past several months the world nuclear industry has launched yet another of its perpetual propaganda campaigns to diminish public concerns about nuclear power in general - and Fukushima's Daiichi disaster in particular. Ostensibly for the purpose of convincing the public to invest trillions of dollars in about 4,000 new nuclear power plants to replace dirty coal as the world's #1 energy source. Which, we are told, is the only way to mitigate human contributions to global warming.

In order to accomplish this dubious goal, public attention and concerns about the ever-ongoing - and now worsening - disaster at Fukushima Daiichi must be diverted and/or dismissed. Deal is, the public isn't very trustful of nukes these days, so they have enlisted scientists and academics for the task.

For the current PR campaign the nukes and their several influential lobbying groups have enlisted some notables in fields related to global warming. Because global warming is the new nuclear selling point (they think). They apparently believe the public will suddenly demand more nukes if a James Hansen or a Ken Buesseler can be convinced to weigh in with flippant dismissals of public concerns. As if climate scientists and oceanographers are nuclear 'experts' or something (they are not). Just as bad, for every scientific bigwig recruited for the PR campaign, colleagues in their fields can be expected to join the effort.

A consistent theme in this project coming from academia has been a mischaracterization of actual versus perceived risks from radioactive contamination escaping in increasing amounts from the Fukushima Daiichi reservation into the Pacific Ocean and concentrating in its food chain. And while it is true that the public isn't very adept at putting nuclear concerns into proper perspective, they have earned their distrust (and sometimes fear) of the nuclear enterprise the hard way. Nukes have no one to blame but themselves for that.

You can't spend decades deliberately terrifying whole populations with threats of Total Nuclear Annihilation at any moment, then expect the same populations to gladly accept potential nuclear annihilation just up the road when/if the nuclear plant they never wanted melts down and explodes. Worse, since the end of the good old Cold War we now have whole huge departments of government fear-mongering the horrific threat of "terrorists" (a fluid designation) exploding your basic pressure cooker IED downtown into which they've inserted a stolen (or just purchased) radiation source. Your so-called "Dirty Bomb."

So it seems pretty ridiculous to now complain that people's concerns about radiation in their air, food and water from gigantic melting, exploding reactors are "overblown." As if gigantic melting, exploding reactors are somehow harmless (they are not). And yes, "harmless" is a word Buesseler actually used in his pro-nuclear fluff piece. And they wonder why people are skeptical. Oy.

If average members of the public are unable to "properly" weigh the risks of things nuclear, it is because they have been carefully taught NOT to "properly" weigh the risks of things nuclear by a culture of coordinated lies that has dominated this technology from its beginnings. The risks don't become greater or lesser just depending on whether they're wanting to terrify you today or sell you new nukes instead.

The health risks have always been relative to the dose and rate of exposure, the type and energy levels of the emissions, and the type of exposure (internal or external). People paying attention tend to understand this. Risks of turning whole swaths of countryside and important water sources (and now even oceans ) into Dead Zones also need assessment. Which is difficult if a nuclear government, following the directives of a desperate industry, refuses to acknowledge that there even IS a Dead Zone (and thus cheating the displaced out of proper compensation). These are the types of important information people need to properly assess the risk, so these are the types of information most subject to deceptions.

Another useful tactic is distraction. We see this on a daily basis as we follow the political circus, so we Kossacks are more cognizant than most people of how this works. The PR sleight of mind surrounding Fukushima Daiichi is an excellent example of real world, deadly serious propaganda. What we are getting is a patronizing lecture on what poor risk-assessors we are, using data from the original 2011 Fukushima disaster - and tuna estimated to have spent exactly 1 month of their lives feeding off Japan before migrating to California - to diminish concerns about the current 2013 Fukushima disaster.

The failure of water containment is indeed a new disaster, by the way. IAEA informs us that it's been a Level 3 on the INES scale for the past few months, but the contamination levels are going up almost daily. It will go higher.

Japanese nuclear officials admit that the 'river' of groundwater flowing beneath the facility and into the ocean is picking up contamination from the three ~150+ ton coriums that used to be reactor cores in plants 1, 2 and 3 at Daiichi. Neither the contaminated groundwater nor the contaminated coolant water in the now-leaking tanks ever came in contact with spent fuel assemblies in the elevated SFPs [Spent Fuel Pools]. It's purely corium contact contamination. Which is worse than what's loose in the SFPs (that we know of), and presenting a different level of threat than the airborne releases of 2011. The risks to be assessed are different.

Nobody's going to drop dead of radiation poisoning by tuna sandwich. So weigh your risks and decide for yourself - extra becquerels of cumulative internal dose in an already radioactive world (plus mercury), against that tasty tuna. It's perfectly alright to simply say no and eat the salad instead (which has its own risks these days, a whole other subject). Pay only as much attention to authoritarian paternalists as they deserve, and no more.

All anybody really needs to know in the context of the current PR campaign is that the levels of cesium - and now strontium and a host of other nasties - in seafood that has been contaminated by living or feeding off Fukushima is going up and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future. It is not going down. Despite the deceptions in this PR campaign, the contamination levels in the ocean off Daiichi are NOT the same now as they were in 2011. The risk profile has changed significantly.

Proper assessment of relative risk MUST be based upon information as accurate and up to date as possible. Unfortunately in this particular situation, we are being fed disinformation designed to manipulate our choices. Radioactive elements will continue to accumulate in the ocean off Daiichi for the foreseeable future, as there are no efforts in place to stop the outflow of corium-contaminated water. Decide for yourself how much risk you want to take.

Bottom line: We're on our own. We must seek out accurate information if it's out there to be found, or assess our risk in the dark. So while it's good to keep in mind that your tuna sandwich presents far less of an immediate risk of sickness/death from radiation than it presents for choking or bad mayonnaise, that does not mean low-level exposures to radioactive contamination are "harmless."

Originally posted to Joieau on Sat Nov 09, 2013 at 05:27 PM PST.

Also republished by Nuclear Free DK.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Have you heard the song (4+ / 0-)

    Tuna fish blues ?

    "please love deeply...openly and genuinely." A. M. H.

    by indycam on Sat Nov 09, 2013 at 05:54:34 PM PST

  •  So, you're complaining (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    duhban, palantir, Mike Kahlow, mamooth

    that the public's ability to understand relative risk is poor, for various reasons. And to alleviate this problem, you write a diary that decreases, rather than increases, the public's ability to understand risk?

    Not cool.

    We are all in the same boat on a stormy sea, and we owe each other a terrible loyalty. -- G.K. Chesterton

    by Keith Pickering on Sat Nov 09, 2013 at 05:57:16 PM PST

    •  No, I think you've missed the point. (22+ / 0-)

      I am most certainly not complaining that the public has a poor ability to properly assess risks, I am complaining that the public is getting false and deceptive information on which to base their risk assessments. While at the same time being told they aren't smart enough to even bother.

      How have I decreased the public's ability to understand risk?

      •  Well, for one thing (6+ / 0-)

        you're helping to spread some of that false and deceptive information. Like the statement "there are no efforts in place to stop the outflow of corium-contaminated water." Utterly untrue, as you should know. It is also untrue that groundwater underneath the plant is picking up contamination. There are groundwater leaks into the plant, and that is the groundwater that is being contaminated. Currently, that contaminated groundwater is being pumped out and stored. Late last summer it was discovered that water had also leaked out of the plant into the ground, but that leak has been stopped for now (although monitoring continues).

        The Japanese government has also requested international assistance in evaluating and dealing with the various water contamination issues. But "no efforts in place"? Nonsense. You should know better.

        We are all in the same boat on a stormy sea, and we owe each other a terrible loyalty. -- G.K. Chesterton

        by Keith Pickering on Sat Nov 09, 2013 at 06:30:11 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Why aren't they building a barrier to keep the (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Joieau, Sandino, Creosote

          fresh groundwater from running into the plants?

        •  And they were putting up (11+ / 0-)

          a metal wall against the cliff for awhile there too, but stopped before it was finished after IAEA 'consultants' pointed out it wouldn't work. They are not installing some kind of fancy ice wall. They aren't putting a cofferdam uphill to divert the groundwater. They're doing just what they've been doing for two years and eight months. It is failing and/or has failed. There are no plans or projects in progress to deal with the situation as it exists right now. Instead, the Japanese government is asking for international intervention... er, help.

          TEPCO claims not to know where the coriums are. I have always found that claim to be... disingenuous. We can measure the gamma from fucking space (and so can everybody else). Might still be in the basements. Might not. That's not information we're privvy to either.

          And groundwater getting into the basements (they are completely flooded, the water level is now ground level) is getting out of the basements. TEPCO says "cracks" due to the 1-3 earthquakes a day they now record, I think they were already cracked from the big one. Or one or more coriums could have melted through. Who knows? If anyone does, we are not being told about it.

        •  Should have said 'no meaningful efforts to stop (6+ / 0-)

          the outflow of ...'. So you're right on that point.

          The disinformation is where you go to the TEPCO releases of the false SPEEDI information, which lead a top thyroid specialist to tell the public, and then picked up by the Japanese gov & media, that there was more danger in taking iodine pills than from the radiation.

          Recently the scientist found that that 'information' released was entirely cooked and populations were exposed to massive threats. Numbering in the hundreds of thousands of people, maybe millions, especially children, who should have taken the iodine. He was unhappy about that.

          You see, there might be misinformation which leads people to panic overmuch, but the Industry's misinformation is a direct threat to humans. That's been a consistent pattern since the early days of 'safe exposure' levels which, iirc, have since been reduced by orders of magnitude over the decades.

          That 'safe level' being of course a statistical guess based on a limited number of mass-irradiation events in history. And not all of them comprehensive or with true assumptions.

          A 'safe enough to make money on' guess. Since nobody has actually, in the world of real information, established that a safe level even exists...

          Then of course the ludicrous 'equals a banana; not a lot over background (which is a 'norm' rising over the decades); an x-ray" type of 'arguments' which anyone who can do addition and understands the concept of 'cumulative effects' should be embarrassed to spew.

          Or the 'dilution of the W H O L E Pacific Ocean' rank stupidity, which, of course, is not the real way currents and oceans work. An equal distribution we might see in some decades or centuries, but not in our lifetimes.

          So there's misinformation which might cause someone to worry needlessly, and then there's misinformation which boils down to risking the life and health of all which is born in large areas of the world and put forth for the motive of making money and securing careers. Which do you imagine is the graver danger?

          Actual Democrats: the surest, quickest, route to More Democrats. And actually addressing our various emergencies.

          by Jim P on Sat Nov 09, 2013 at 11:45:48 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Wow, great comment Jim! (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:

            You'd think actual oceanographers would know that whole ridiculous 'total dilution' thing is designed to make them look like bozos, wouldn't you? I've seen a few not bother to stop with the "Entirety Of The Pacific" thing, but throw in the total amount of water in all oceans and seas everywhere on earth. That's just so dishonest. And cheapens planetary sciences we need to be able to trust somewhat in an era of global warming.

  •  well I was looking forward to this (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    palantir, Mike Kahlow, mamooth

    but now I am not.

    If you are going to accuse another kossack of 'shilling' even if you don't call it that out loud then you had better have overwhelming evidence.

    You do not, or at least you do not present it. As such your claim reads more as smear then accusation.

    I assume you are referencing Cesium (Cs) in your accumulation claims. As has already been discussed the natural levels of radiation in tuna from Potassium-40 (K40) are much higher then anything found from Cs 137.  Which would mean that there is no greater risk to eating migratory tuna now after Fukushima then before.

    Perhaps you would like to address this hole in your theory? And while you are at it perhaps you could explain how something can accumulate despite actually being excreted from the body? The last thing you might want to address is the level exposure here vs the level of exposure everyone gets naturally from all those weapon tests in the 50s.

    There's a lot of things that are and went wrong with Fukushima. It was an old plant that should have been shut down a long long time ago. But there's no need to throw around unsubstantiated accusations.

    Der Weg ist das Ziel

    by duhban on Sat Nov 09, 2013 at 05:59:56 PM PST

  •  PR or not, nukes are economically dead (17+ / 0-)

    Economics is what killed them in the 70's, and economics still kills them today.  That's why Duke Energy, the largest electric company in the US, just cancelled its order for two new nukes in Florida, and closed down a third that was being repaired. The cost of the two new nukes had more than doubled already--and they haven't even got their permit to build them yet.

    Nukes are dead as a mackerel because they cannot compete economically, and no amount of PR will change that.  (shrug)

    In the end, reality always wins.

    by Lenny Flank on Sat Nov 09, 2013 at 06:03:02 PM PST

    •  I believe you're right about that. (7+ / 0-)

      I think their grand 'renaissance' is DOA too. Unfortunately, reality has never dented the flow of good money after bad in the nuclear subculture. They keep trying to sell, even when nobody's buying.

      Hansen in particular has for awhile now been one of the industry's loudest evangelicals to the environmental community. For all the good that does, which is nil in the energy and financial worlds. It would not surprise me that other scientists touting deceptive data about the current risks from Fukushima have bought into the same pipe dream. I can't think of many other reasons they'd be part of a deliberate snow job. They aren't nukes or nuclear scientists, but have put forth data (that they were no doubt fed by nukes) that is flat-out erroneous. And it's not like the deteriorating conditions at Fukushima haven't been in the news on a regular basis since the 'new' leaks began this summer, with ever-worsening admissions embedded. An interested and intelligent person could figure out easily enough that contamination data from 2011 no longer applies. This is a different "Nuclear Incident," ultimately caused by the first one, but not a continuously ongoing aspect of the first one.

      I am concerned about that deceptive data per the current risks presented by Daiichi's deteriorating conditions, and insulted by the suggestion that the public should ignore and/or dismiss those risks based on irrelevant/deceptive data.

      •  Deceptive data? Where? (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Mike Kahlow, duhban, kalmoth, mamooth

        When you charge scientists, apparently including Hansen, with spreading deceptive data, you're beginning to sound a lot like Cuccinelli going after Mann.

        So let's be specific. What "deceptive data about the current risks from Fukushima" have been spread? By whom? In what forum?

        If you can't answer that, please have the integrity to withdraw your claim.

        We are all in the same boat on a stormy sea, and we owe each other a terrible loyalty. -- G.K. Chesterton

        by Keith Pickering on Sat Nov 09, 2013 at 06:59:03 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  There are 7 links in my diary. (5+ / 0-)

          The deceptive data has been talked about and argued over for weeks in other diaries. You could start there. Quantifying the data was not my purpose with this diary.

          Maybe next time I'll offer something you can pick apart.

          •  Your links give no evidence of deceptive data (4+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            duhban, Keith Pickering, kalmoth, mamooth

            or scientific malfeasance.

            The work you cite (in one of your links) was funded by NOAA. You have essentially accused him of a felony. Where is your evidence?

          •  In other words, you've got bupkus. (4+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            duhban, Mike Kahlow, kalmoth, mamooth

            Seven links? So what? Each of those links contains hundreds, if not thousands, of statements. I asked you to be specific, and you answer with enormous generalities. What specifically is deceptive?

            And "argued about for weeks in other diaries"? What a cop-out.

            The only person spreading misinformation here is you.

            We are all in the same boat on a stormy sea, and we owe each other a terrible loyalty. -- G.K. Chesterton

            by Keith Pickering on Sat Nov 09, 2013 at 07:38:00 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  It is deceptive (5+ / 0-)

              to present data from 2011 to claim there is no issue with radionuclides in the ocean and ocean life in late 2013. It's also distractive.

              It is deceptive to claim that excess radiation dose from bioaccumulated Fukushima radionuclides is harmless because 0.0117% of natural potassium is radioactive.

              It is deceptive to pretend that cesium is the only Fukushima radioisotope in the ocean off Japan, and that excess radiation dose from Fukushima isotopes is limited to one isotope.

              It is flat-out erroneous - false - to assert that "the most common" natural radionuclide in the oceans is polonium-210. When I saw that (first in Buesseler's piece), I pretty much knew he'd been fed a line of bull by a laughing nuke minion, and believed it because he doesn't know any better. Not being a nuke, and all.

              Stuff like that.

              •  Again lacking specifics, and sense (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Mike Kahlow, kalmoth, mamooth

                You do realize that radiation declines over time, don't you? Because radioactive things decay?

                Since the major radiation release from Fukushima was in 2011, the radioactivity from that release would have declined by 2013. So in what sense is it deceptive to point out that risks have declined?

                And again you lack specifics when you say "It is deceptive to claim that excess radiation dose from bioaccumulated Fukushima radionuclides is harmless because 0.0117% of natural potassium is radioactive." Who made such a claim? Where?

                And I will agree that it is a mistake for Buesseler to have said Po-210 is the most common radionuclide in the seawater, but it is the greatest source (by far) of naturally occurring committed radiation dose in tuna. So even though the fact was in error, where's the deception? If this was deliberate deception, whom was he trying to fool, into believing what? This whole point makes no sense at all.

                We are all in the same boat on a stormy sea, and we owe each other a terrible loyalty. -- G.K. Chesterton

                by Keith Pickering on Sat Nov 09, 2013 at 09:39:40 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  Deception. (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Jim P

                  The propagandists are not talking about 2011 risks of contaminated seafood, they are talking about 2013 risks using 2011 data. Which amounts to precisely five [5] young tuna fish caught off California in the fall of 2011 after having spent a single month of their lives feeding off northeastern Japan. The risks have not declined, they have steadily increased over two years and eight months, dramatically over the past 4 months. The only isotopes that have significantly declined were the short-lived ones. Like iodine-131 which are no longer being produced by fission. Don't worry, we'll still have our friend cesium with us a hundred years from now. There's others that will basically never go away, as humans reckon time. It's all relative [h/t al einstein].

                  There are more radioactive isotopes (the whole corium stew) present in the ocean off Fukushima now than there were in 2011. That's just a fact, I can't imagine why you'd want to deny it. They've been dumping directly for awhile now by the hundreds of tons a day. It's not just fallout anymore.

                  By the way, the dose from K40 in the tuna was a good deal higher than either the cesium dose or the polonium dose. He only asserted the polonium because it was fed to him as a 'hot' (as in sensational) comparison because that element has been in the news and starring on daytime teevee recently. People would notice it because it's become all the latest fad with spook-assassins the world over. Certainly hooked him, didn't it?

                  •  Hi Joieau and others (0+ / 0-)

                    Here is the most recent data on Cs-134 and Cs-137 activities in the north Pacific. These are actual measurements. No radio Cs from Fukushima in Hawaii as of September 2012.  Cs activities 3 fold above pre-Fukushima background up to about 0.004 Bq/L. 4 milliBq/L in the "plume".



                    by MarineChemist on Sun Nov 10, 2013 at 04:06:19 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Is that based on TEPCO (0+ / 0-)

                      or Japanese government figures? I ask, because they've been caught lying regularly since March of 2011. Are they based on oceanographers taking samples and handing them off to an 'imbedded' nuke to process? If the oceanographers are doing the processing themselves, where are their CVs for proper education and training to do that kind of work?

                      Oh, and is cesium the only radionuclide they're testing for? There's a lot worse things than that in the water...

                      •  Hi Joieau, (0+ / 0-)

                        If you read the paper you will find that the oceanographers work at the University of Hawai'i, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution and the Czech Technical University.  They are trained to detect radionuclides in the environment. Their research goal in this case is to use the Cs-137 as a tracer to help validate ocean circulation models.

                        Similarly highly trained scientists have also reported on Sr-90 in seawater here.

                        They find Sr-90 levels of 0.0008 to 0.085 Bq/L relative to the pre-Fukushima background of 0.001 Bq/L for Sr-90.  This compares to the roughly 14 Bq/L of naturally occurring radionuclides in seawater.

                        A great majority of funding for the initial characterization of radionuclides in the north Pacific after the disaster came from the George and Betty Moore Foundation and the US National Science Foundation. This is reported in the Acknowledgements at the end of the paper.

                        Again these are the data on Cs-137 and Sr-90 and how they are distributed in the north Pacific as of September 2012.


                        by MarineChemist on Mon Nov 11, 2013 at 10:02:10 AM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  Will certainly check your link (0+ / 0-)

                          and try to sort out the details.

                          Do you have a rough figure then for overall levels of Fuku-produced fission products/fuel isotopes in the samples? Or are we to consider 'natural' isotopes in combination but not 'unnatural' isotopes?

                          •  Hi Joieau, (0+ / 0-)

                            Will do this later today. Just heading out the door for a Rememberance Day ceremony.


                            by MarineChemist on Mon Nov 11, 2013 at 10:30:16 AM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  Hi Joieau, (0+ / 0-)

                            new diary with the info you requested.  

                            I think people have this impression of a plume of radioactivity that is off the charts moving across the Pacific to the coast of North America.  While the isotopes are there they represent a very minor fraction of radioactivity in seawater.  They will be very useful as tracers of ocean circulation but will not represent a significant public or environmental health risk.


                            by MarineChemist on Mon Nov 11, 2013 at 06:02:33 PM PST

                            [ Parent ]

                  •  Hi Joieau, (0+ / 0-)

                    You should take the time to read the studies you link to in your diaries.  The dose from K-40 is not a good deal higher than Po-210.  Table 1 of the Fisher et al. study reports the following:

                    Po-210 annual dose is 558 microSv for a North American
                    K-40 annual dose is only 12.7 microSv

                    So Po-210 is roughly 44 fold more significant

                    You are the first to attack me and call me a shill for reporting data to readers.  I'll just continue to post facts.  Readers can decide.


                    by MarineChemist on Sun Nov 10, 2013 at 04:55:12 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  As I have advised you repeatedly, (0+ / 0-)

                      just look up the list - in order of appearance - of radionuclides most prevalent in seawater/seafood. Po-210 is number 10 on a list of 10. Really.

                      It has always been thus, Fukushima hasn't changed it. If polonium bioaccumulates MORE than potassium, rubidium or uranium (numbers 1-4 on the list), we all ought to re-think our fondness for seafood. From any ocean.

                      By the way, rubidium-87 is also a potassium mimic in bioprocesses.

                      •  Hi Joieau, (0+ / 0-)

                        The fact of the matter is that when you eat tuna from the Pacific a majority of the exposure is from Po-210 not from K-40 as you stated.  I highly recommend you read the primary literature to get information for your factual statements.

                        By the way, the dose from K40 in the tuna was a good deal higher than either the cesium dose or the polonium dose. He only asserted the polonium because it was fed to him as a 'hot' (as in sensational) comparison because that element has been in the news and starring on daytime teevee recently. People would notice it because it's become all the latest fad with spook-assassins the world over. Certainly hooked him, didn't it?
                        I am happy to provide you with information on the monitoring of radionuclide distribution from the peer-reviewed scientific literature as you continue to explore this topic.  Cheers.


                        by MarineChemist on Mon Nov 11, 2013 at 10:05:41 AM PST

                        [ Parent ]

        •  Dude, the Japanese pretty well shut their fucking (5+ / 0-)

          nuke industry down over this. If you want to argue that point, why don't you take it to them instead of to a diarist at Dkos. The verdict is in. If you disagree, take it to the next level up, Stop acting like all of these things are still open questions in the real world.

          There can be no protection locally if we're content to ignore the fact that there are no controls globally.

          by oldpotsmuggler on Sat Nov 09, 2013 at 08:19:09 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  If you have evidence of scientific malfeasance (4+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        duhban, Keith Pickering, kalmoth, mamooth

        please bring it forwards. If these researchers are funded through federal grants, falsification of data is a felony.

        Otherwise please withdraw your allegation.

        It would not surprise me that other scientists touting deceptive data about the current risks from Fukushima have bought into the same pipe dream. I can't think of many other reasons they'd be part of a deliberate snow job. They aren't nukes or nuclear scientists, but have put forth data (that they were no doubt fed by nukes) that is flat-out erroneous
  •  I live in the West Coast and I am concerned (12+ / 0-)

    US: West Coast Fried by Nuclear Radiation from Fukushima

    28 Signs That the West Coast Is Being Absolutely Fried with Nuclear Radiation from Fukushima
    18. According to a professor at Tokyo University, 3 gigabecquerels of cesium-137 are flowing into the port at Fukushima Daiichi every single day.

    19. It has been estimated that up to 100 times as much nuclear radiation has been released into the ocean from Fukushima than was released during the entire Chernobyl disaster.

    20. One recent study concluded that a very large plume of cesium-137 from the Fukushima disaster will start flowing into U.S. coastal waters early next year…

    Ocean simulations showed that the plume of radioactive cesium-137 released by the Fukushima disaster in 2011 could begin flowing into U.S. coastal waters starting in early 2014 and peak in 2016.

    Daily Kos an oasis of truth. Truth that leads to action.

    by Shockwave on Sat Nov 09, 2013 at 06:17:53 PM PST

    •  And that's part of the misinformation (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Mike Kahlow, duhban, kalmoth, mamooth

      you should be concerned about. For example, from your link we read this:

      "7. Experts have found very high levels of cesium-137 in plankton living in the waters of the Pacific Ocean between Hawaii and the west coast."

      The link provided there cites a study which found cesium-137 in plankton, and the highest levels they found were "8.2 to 10.5 becquerels per kilogram". Considering that the human body's natural radiation is 268 becquerels per kilogram, in what universe is this "very high"? Or even anything to be concerned about?

      And knowing this, can we have any confidence at all that your linked source is anything other than a propaganda mill?

      We are all in the same boat on a stormy sea, and we owe each other a terrible loyalty. -- G.K. Chesterton

      by Keith Pickering on Sat Nov 09, 2013 at 06:52:12 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Radiation exposure is cumulative (7+ / 0-)

        and many people are aware that there is no 'safe' level. Extra exposures, especially of the internal kind, should be avoided whenever possible. Some will discount the risks, but some will not. There's no reason for anyone to care one way or the other what other people's risk-assessment conclusions about this are.

        I am merely pointing out that nukes are as dishonest as they've always been, and this PR campaign is no different. Because things are deteriorating rapidly at Fukushima Daiichi right now.

        •  no it is not (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Mike Kahlow, Keith Pickering, mamooth

          Radiation is just that energy radiating out till it interacts with something and then it's done and over with. In a way it's like a lottery only you don't really want to 'win' at this one.

          The only possible way to argue accumulation is if the radioactive material itself stays in the body and that's simply not true. Not for tuna and not for people.

          You seem to want to transform an accident with your agenda against nukes. Now mind you I don't completely disagree with you about nukes but it's at best completely tangential here.

          You've yet to demonstrate any risk let alone any exposure above what is considered normal.

          Der Weg ist das Ziel

          by duhban on Sat Nov 09, 2013 at 07:37:11 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  If you really believe that (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Mike Kahlow, duhban, kalmoth, mamooth

          then why is there no correlation between background radiation dose and cancer incidence? Because it certainly seems to me that background radiation is cumulative.

          The plain fact is that there has never been any study, anywhere, at any time, that has shown any human health effect from any radiation dose below 100 mSv. The most-affected area around Fukushima got a dose of less than 10 mSv.

          We are all in the same boat on a stormy sea, and we owe each other a terrible loyalty. -- G.K. Chesterton

          by Keith Pickering on Sat Nov 09, 2013 at 08:43:25 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  What on earth would convince you (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Shockwave, Sandino, Jim P

            that there's no correlation between background radiation dose and cancer incidence? Do you think they invented cancer in the 1940s?

            •  Cancer has multiple causes. (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              duhban, mamooth

              Only some are due to radiation.

              •  Well, duh! (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Shockwave, Sandino, Jim P

                How does this demonstrate that there's no correlation between background radiation dose and cancer incidence?

                •  Lowest dose shown to cause cancer = 100 mSv (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:

                  Background radiation = 10 microSv.

                  That's a factor of 10^4.

                  •  nope (3+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    duhban, Mike Kahlow, mamooth

                    World average background radiation is about 2.5 mSv per year. The US average is about 3.5 mSv per year. Some places in Iran get 100 mSv per year or more, and there is no significant difference in cancer rates there.

                    We are all in the same boat on a stormy sea, and we owe each other a terrible loyalty. -- G.K. Chesterton

                    by Keith Pickering on Sat Nov 09, 2013 at 10:13:39 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Cancer is not the only thing to study. Assuming (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:

                      the doctors in any given local have the training/equipment to accurately ascertain what part of the population has cancer.

                      Not to mention typical lifespans have to be considered as many cancers can take decades to develop after insult.

                      There's immune system damage which would make children and elderly more vulnerable to viruses and bacteria; there's muscle damage, including heart muscles, and that particularly in children and infants; ...

                      Once again, the tactic of defenders is to take A thing in isolation and pretend that it is unconnected to any other thing. Nor can any one thing have more than one effect. All while wearing the pretense of 'being scientific' while eschewing objectivity and how intricate nature and reality are.

                      Actual Democrats: the surest, quickest, route to More Democrats. And actually addressing our various emergencies.

                      by Jim P on Sat Nov 09, 2013 at 11:58:12 PM PST

                      [ Parent ]

            •  The data does (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              kalmoth, duhban, mamooth

              Data convinces me. I'm sorry that data doesn't convince you. So I guess you and climate deniers have something in common.

              Cancer rates by state:


              Background radiation by state:


              No correlation. Read 'em and weep.

              We are all in the same boat on a stormy sea, and we owe each other a terrible loyalty. -- G.K. Chesterton

              by Keith Pickering on Sat Nov 09, 2013 at 09:43:39 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  and you control for mobile populations HOW? (0+ / 0-)

                Quoting data is not the same as 'doing science';  that's how meaningless factoids get produced.  And, the quality of scientific data depends on the questions asked and (yes, it happens) the desired answer, in addition to the quality of the scientists.

                If that's your data, YOU read 'em - then USE IT TO BUILD A SOLID CASE, "you who are so wise in the ways of science".

                Otherwise, you got nothin'....

                trying to stay alive 'til I reach 65!

                by chmood on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 05:23:56 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

    •  zerohedge has an article up saying (7+ / 0-)

      something like "Texas sized Fukushima Debris Field Off U.S. West Coast"

      ....  Sounds worrisome to me. Some commenters above may not find that concerning.  (not you, SW)  Strange the things people defend sometimes.

      "The law is meant to be my servant and not my master, still less my torturer and my murderer." -- James Baldwin. July 11, 1966.

      by YucatanMan on Sat Nov 09, 2013 at 06:54:59 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Michael Snyder? Really? (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Shockwave, duhban, Sandino

      Just google that guy, I think your link is exactly the kind of misleading information the diarist warns against.

      "When strong winds blow, don't build walls, but rather windmills: there is a way to turn every bit of adversity into fuel for improvement." -Nassim Nicholas Taleb

      by Urban Owl on Sat Nov 09, 2013 at 07:51:03 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Gives Whole New Meaning to the Term (6+ / 0-)

    Hot Tuna.

    This aggression will not stand, man.

    by kaleidescope on Sat Nov 09, 2013 at 06:38:48 PM PST

    •  except the tuna is anything but hot (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Keith Pickering, Mike Kahlow, mamooth

      you will receive more background radiation from naturally occurring sources of radiation like potassium 40 then you will from anything the Tuna picked up from the plant. Further more given the biological half lives involved there's practically nothing left at this point.

      Der Weg ist das Ziel

      by duhban on Sat Nov 09, 2013 at 06:53:09 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Biological half life of what? (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        I assume you mean radioactive iodine and possibly cesium. But, as Joieau mentioned, Fukushima's nuclear accident released more than radioactive iodine and cesium. It also released 238 Pu and 239 Pu--the later has a half-life of 24,000 years--which bioaccumulate in aquatic life, especially in bottom dwelling organisms (WHO 1983).

        •  um there's no iodine present (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Mike Kahlow, mamooth

          the diarist is flailing about trying to 'prove' their point by dragging apparently every radioactive isotope into the discussion.

          This should be solely about Cs, specifically Cs 137 as that's the by product being talked about in these studies. If you would like to submit evidence of any other istope then by all means please do.

          Der Weg ist das Ziel

          by duhban on Sat Nov 09, 2013 at 11:08:09 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  you're the worst possible advertisement for your (0+ / 0-)

            "point of view"

            Please proceed:  your infantile neenering not only makes you look bad, it makes those who agree with you look bad, too.

            trying to stay alive 'til I reach 65!

            by chmood on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 05:40:30 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

      •  Is the level in the Tuna lower or higher than (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        before? Duh!

        Flying at 10,000 ft. might be equal to an x-ray, but getting an x-ray while flying doesn't equal just having an x-ray.

        These are two insults. You add them when they happen to a living system.

        You don't say 'oh the American Revolution and the Iraq/Afghanistan Wars had about the same number of fatalities to Americans, so therefore the American Revolution IS the same as Iraq/Afghanistan.'

        Well, at least people who aren't being asinine don't.

        Actual Democrats: the surest, quickest, route to More Democrats. And actually addressing our various emergencies.

        by Jim P on Sun Nov 10, 2013 at 12:06:06 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  what in the hell? (0+ / 0-)

          I'm sure you have a point but I can't find it in that rambling mess.

          Der Weg ist das Ziel

          by duhban on Sun Nov 10, 2013 at 12:18:11 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Ah, but you'd have to look! (0+ / 0-)

            The tuna are worse off than they were. Obviously. As would be any other ocean life which has incorporated into their bodies more radiation than they would be without the accident.

            This affects ocean life. It certainly affects the tuna. Especially since those found were in the waters off Fukushima during the beginning of the perpetual disaster. Fukushima, which has since been pouring about 300 tons/day (110,000 tons a year) into the Pacific and will continue to do so for the rest of your life.

            The other bit was a demonstration of the stupidity repeated over and over-- seriously massive 'can't tell their ass from their elbow' stupidity, or else just plain lying -- of the 'this isn't as strong as x, y, or z' when the insults to the system have cumulative effects. Which even imbeciles should be able to realize, let alone people pretending to defend science.

            Sorry if you found the obvious to be tricky.

            Actual Democrats: the surest, quickest, route to More Democrats. And actually addressing our various emergencies.

            by Jim P on Sun Nov 10, 2013 at 02:37:44 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  sorry but that's not how it works (0+ / 0-)

              and your 'obvious' isn't science.

              You have a good day

              Der Weg ist das Ziel

              by duhban on Sun Nov 10, 2013 at 03:02:13 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

            •  Just a player, playing. (0+ / 0-)

              Several of the clueless wannabe authoritarians you see tossing bullshit here are most likely bored 20-somethings in Mom's basement playing dueling persona games on the intertoobs. You can't shame them, they don't give a shit if 'everybody knows' they're just players, playing. It's just a game.

              Prediction: soon, in this diary as one of the usual M.O. dead-threading comments or earlier in the next Fukuppy diary, the "duhban" pseud will assert that cesium is the only radioisotope that's been released from Daiichi since March 11, 2011.

              When linked to TEPCO, SPEEDI, old and new regulator acronym, NRC, DoE, French, Russian, South African and IAEA data reporting releases of everything from tritium to americium to plutonium, the pseud will ignore and re-assert.

              When told it's a physical impossibility by all the rules of space-time and atomic physics for a host of other nasty isotopes to NOT be present in the releases, he will immediately revert to ad hominem, whine about stupid plebes and demand curriculum vitae to 'prove' credentials for pronouncing such words out loud in public. And offer a "lecture on science."

              Then he'll go right back to bananas. It's a familiar pattern.

  •  Yes, let's discuss risk assessment. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    duhban, kalmoth, mamooth

    By all means.

    You cite a recent paper in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences and call it

    a mischaracterization of actual versus perceived risks
    That paper attempted to characterize the risk to individuals from eating tuna that may have been contaminated by the Fukushima disaster. The result? The radiation risk is to an individual, here in this country, is less than that from eating a banana.

    I personally am at higher risk from getting 15 feet up on a ladder and changing my storm windows every fall.

    The Fukishima disaster was horrible. The impact on the citizens of Japan near the site should not be understated, much of the land will be uninhabitable for years. The mis-engineering of the plant that allowed the disaster is unforgivable. All of this is enough to make the case against nuclear power.

    But if we're going to work against nuclear power, we're going to have to use rational arguments that hold up to scrutiny.

    •  So it is better to eat a Cesium laden tuna (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Joieau, CA wildwoman, Sandino

      sandwich than a naturally radioactive banana?

      The answer is the tuna sandwich will increase your radiation load and the banana will not.  And strontium will stay in your body for a long time, and where there is cesium we can expect that one also.

      •  The tuna sandwich has less radiation from Cs (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        duhban, kalmoth, mamooth

        than it has from naturally occurring 40-K.

        The chemistry of cesium and strontium are completely different. Strontium will bioaccumulate through incorporation into your bones. Cesium does not.

        •  Doesn't matter. (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          CA wildwoman, Sandino, Jim P

          The radiation from cesium is excess dose from man-made cesium. It is not 'natural' background dose from K40.

          That is not at all difficult, is it?

          Nor is the fact that strontium is a calcium-mimic relevant in any way to the fact that cesium is a potassium-mimic. Duck's point was where there's cesium, there's strontium. That's a fact. Why are you trying to distract and deceive?

          •  I'm stating facts. (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            duhban, kalmoth, mamooth

            Cesium does not bioaccumulate. Strontium does.

            If you're talking about strontium that's another issue entirely. But the linked article discusses cesium.

            And it's not true that where there's cesium there's strontium. The 90-Sr may precipitate out in seawater and may not enter the foodchain in the same way as 137-Cs.

            •  Cesium very much does (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Sandino, Jim P

              bioaccumulate, just as potassium does. Because your body thinks it's potassium. It has a 70-day biological half-life, which is nearly 10 times longer than the true half-life of iodine-131. Which also bioaccumulates, and causes thyroid cancer.

              A 70-day biological half-life means that after 70 days you still retain half of the original amount. The rest is changed out and excreted, where it goes back into the environment for the rest of its 30-year true half-life. There to be picked up and bioaccumulated again by some other critter.

              Cesium uptaken and incorporated in tissues as potassium is overwhelmingly likely to be substituting for a stable potassium atom. Because ~99.98+% of natural potassium atoms are stable. Thus cesium plus potassium is more radioactive than just potassium.

              See how that works?

              •  No. (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                duhban, kalmoth, mamooth
                A 70-day biological half-life means that after 70 days you still retain half of the original amount.
                Which means that your body - or any other organism - does not accumulate.
                See how that works?
                yeah... Check my profile. I teach physical/biophysical chemistry. I am desperately trying to refrain from snark. You might try to do the same.

                And as for 131-I... nice try, but the paper you cite doesn't measure 131-I. And for good reason, since 131-I has a half-life of 8 days, it will not be present in any tuna harvested months after Fukushima.

                •  So. You deny that your body (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Sandino, Jim P

                  accumulates potassium from the environment?

                  And further deny that iodine bioaccumulates? How about calcium? Phosphorus? Carbon, sodium, iron, hydrogen, oxygen... hell, start at the top of the list of elements in the human body and explain to me how they got there if they do not bioaccumulate.

                  •  Yes I do. (3+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    duhban, kalmoth, mamooth

                    And any other statement would contradict known science.

                    If you want a lecture on equilibrium, and how it is a matter of rates of accumulation vs. rates of excretion, I'm more than happy to provide.

                    •  WTF are you talking about? (2+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      worldlotus, Joieau
                      I'm stating facts. (2+ / 0-)

                      Cesium does not bioaccumulate.


                      I just looked you up. You do teach at a university. I've been staring at this blinking cursor now for 3 minutes not sure what to say.

                      Perhaps you misspoke. But to be clear, C137 does accumulate. It's not debatable. So maybe you meant something else. By how much, and to what effect, in what species is very complex with many variables. And frankly, who gives a fuck? Also not debatable is that Fukushima is an unspeakable nightmare. And you're nitpicking over accumulation rates of cesium.

                      I hope that this site's archives will be available in 50 years.

                      As for the diarist's actual main point, here's some fucking evidence. This little scandal had just fired its rockets when Murch-Gate broke, bumping it off the news-cycle:

                      Revealed: British government's plan to play down Fukushima

                      Internal emails seen by Guardian show PR campaign was launched to protect UK nuclear plans after tsunami in Japan

                      British government officials approached nuclear companies to draw up a co-ordinated public relations strategy to play down the Fukushima nuclear accident just two days after the earthquake and tsunami in Japan and before the extent of the radiation leak was known.

                      Internal emails seen by the Guardian show how the business and energy departments worked closely behind the scenes with the multinational companies EDF Energy, Areva and Westinghouse to try to ensure the accident did not derail their plans for a new generation of nuclear stations in the UK.

                      "This has the potential to set the nuclear industry back globally," wrote one official at the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS), whose name has been redacted. "We need to ensure the anti-nuclear chaps and chapesses do not gain ground on this. We need to occupy the territory and hold it. We really need to show the safety of nuclear."

                      Officials stressed the importance of preventing the incident from undermining public support for nuclear power.

                      •  I was going to leave this thread alone (1+ / 0-)
                        Recommended by:

                        but since you're dropping the f-bomb:

                        137Cs does not bioaccumulate in the sense that, say, phosphorous, calcium, or strontium do. Since the half-life for elimination from the body is 90 days, any Cs you - or a tuna - ingest will be removed with time.

                        As for Fukushima, we agree - it is an unspeakable nightmare. But this diary purports to talk about risk assessment. And if you're going to assess risk you've got to get your numbers right.

                        •  What's with (0+ / 0-)

                          the strange authoritarian-style 'edict from on high' posing on this subject by people who are no more 'expert' on the subject than your average bus driver? Reminds me a lot of the "I slept in a Holiday Inn Express" advertising campaign, or "I'm not a doctor, I just play one on TV."

                          Worse, you haven't bothered to open a book or do a single simple internet search for information that would have informed you conclusively that you don't know what the hell you're talking about. This behavior from people who absolutely should know better than to confuse their ego with scientific facts. Kinda creepy, makes me fear for science itself just when we're going to need it most.

                          Why? What's your agenda?

                          A simple search on "radiocesium bioaccumulation" on Bing returns 5,380 hits. On Google the same search returns 199,000 hits. Lots and lots of scientific papers with titles like "Bioaccumulation of Radiocesium by Fish"

                          and "Modeling Radiocesium Bioaccumulation in a Marine Food Chain"

                          and "Bioaccumulation of Radiocesium in Arctic Seals."

                          On and on and on.

                          These represent a very significant amount of scientific grant and departmental funding money over the years. That's fraud if the bioaccumulation of radiocesium doesn't occur.

                          Fact is, radiocesium does bioaccumulate. This is not a matter of opinion, there's nothing to 'disagree' about. There is only correct and not correct, true versus false. Nothing in between.

                          Anyway, here's a good diary from fellow Kossack akmk back on March 30, 2011 that actually does reflect thoughtful self-education on the subject. So as to promote knowledge, not prevent people from getting accurate information...

                          Caesium-137 and the Marine Food Chain. Read it. Click on some of the links. You too can learn something if you'd step out from behind the brick wall in your mind.

                          Yes. Cesium does indeed bioaccumulate.

                  •  Condescension and Patronizing is the usual last (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:

                    defense for the 'scientists' who can't master evidence, logic, reason, experience, or common sense. Oh, and gainsaying is important, too.

                    Actual Democrats: the surest, quickest, route to More Democrats. And actually addressing our various emergencies.

                    by Jim P on Sun Nov 10, 2013 at 12:10:41 AM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  what evidence? (2+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      Mike Kahlow, mamooth

                      Jim there's been absolutely nothing offered and the diarist can't even get simple scientific points like which radiation has more energy or the nature of the electron.

                      You point out some actual evidence and then we'll talk till then this just feels like axe grinding.

                      Der Weg ist das Ziel

                      by duhban on Sun Nov 10, 2013 at 12:31:30 AM PST

                      [ Parent ]

              •  I 131 is also (3+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Mike Kahlow, kalmoth, mamooth

                also about 1600 times more radioactive then Cs 137 with a half life of about 8 days compared to the 37 years of Cs 137. I 313 also has a gamma decay chain in addition to beta which as you should very well know gamma radiation is much more energetic then beta.

                The more you talk the harder I find it to believe you know anything about this topic.

                Der Weg ist das Ziel

                by duhban on Sat Nov 09, 2013 at 09:14:35 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  I have made a practice of ignoring (2+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Sandino, Jim P

                  this commenter, for obvious reasons. But I chime in here to point out several errors here being asserted, which typify the essential ignorance of the public when it comes to radiation, even when they try to pretend they know more than they actually do.

                  1. Yes, radioactive iodine (all pertinent isotopes) is more radioactive than cesium. This has nothing whatsoever to do with whether this isotope or that isotope bioaccumulates in organic life forms. Iodine (stable or radioactive) accumulates in thyroid glands for use in making metabolic hormones. Which is the thyroid gland's job. Potassium[cesium] accumulates all over the place, but primarily in muscle cells.

                  2. The half-life of cesium-137 is 30.17 years, not 37 years. Cesium-134 has a 2.0648 years. It's more radioactive than 137, but present in lesser volume in the fission products stew. It's a potassium-mimic just like all other cesium atoms.

                  3. Gamma radiation is not "more energetic" than beta just because it's gamma (there's a range on both). It's a different form of radiation. Gamma is electromagnetic energy, like light. Beta particles are electrons or positrons. Alpha particles are helium nuclei.

                  All of the atoms in our biological bodies get switched out (recycled) over time, just as all our cells do. But to claim that all the atoms in a cell in your body haven't 'accumulated' as atoms in a cell of your body is ridiculous. All nutrients - as molecules or as atoms - absorbed by our bodies for being use in our bodies have been bioaccumulated from our environment. All nutrients and dross not absorbed by our bodies go out with the trash quite quickly.

                  This is why you can prevent the bioaccumulation of iodine-131 by taking potassium iodide before you're exposed. It "packs" your thyroid with stable iodine so the radioactive iodine goes on through without being bioaccumulated.

                  Just because a cesium atom takes the place of a potassium atom for only 70 days (or 140 days, or 210 days, or...) doesn't mean it hasn't been bioaccumulated. Honest.

                  Bioaccumulated means absorbed and stored or put to use. For however much time they are in the body serving a function or stored so they can serve a function, before they are cycled out.

                  •  you ignore me mostly because you can't actually (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:

                    provide anything as your discussions here have shown. You've been offered your chances to substantiate your claims, you've refused or offered meaningless generalities. See among actual scientists accusations of falsifying your data are about as serious as you can get thus they are treated very seriously.

                    As to your 'points'

                    1. You are still misusing that word, good gods learn what accumulation means. Yes Cs being in the same family as potassium shares some of the same chemistry as potassium however there is no accumulation. The body excerts it out unlike say lead or strontium. Stop using that word it shows you really don't know what you are talking about.

                     "bio accumulation" doesn't mean what you think it means


                    I can keep going if you want.

                    2. My bad fingers got away from me on Cs 137 however we both know that the Cs 134 is a minor product (or at least we both should know that) more over the studies you yourself are quoting talking about Cs 137 not Cs 134. You do understand how that works right?

                    3. Really? Come on this is basic physics, energy is inversely proportional to wavelength. Thus the shorter the wavelength the higher the energy. Would you like to guess what has the far shorter wavelength? Free hint it's not beta. This is why things that will shield you from beta radiation might not shield you from gamma.

                    Additionally an electron is both a wavelength and a particle (which again come on this is basic physics).

                    I really seriously am questioning your creds on with you continually making basic entry level mistakes.

                    And since you're on an iodine kick, KI (potassium iodide) doesn't 'pack' anything. It works because it tilts the equilibrium of your thyroid to 'too much I' which in turn your body then pushes out.  It still doesn't matter because I-131 has all of nothing to do with Cs-137.

                    Der Weg ist das Ziel

                    by duhban on Sat Nov 09, 2013 at 11:31:17 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

          •  So how does your body know (4+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            kalmoth, duhban, Mike Kahlow, mamooth

            whether the beta particle is from cesium, and therefore fatal, or potassium, and therefore natural? Is this some new kind of science we haven't heard about yet?

            We are all in the same boat on a stormy sea, and we owe each other a terrible loyalty. -- G.K. Chesterton

            by Keith Pickering on Sat Nov 09, 2013 at 10:19:38 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Why would your body need to know? (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Joieau, Jim P

              You and your clicheed red herrings, just pop from diary to diary with the same lies and ignorance.

              The decays in your body are like lottery tickets (a la Shirley Jackson or The Hunger Games). If you double the number of tickets you double the chances of 'winning' I don't know how seemingly intelligent commenters can be so stubbornly unable to understand the simple math. It is almost like they are just saying anything to try to downplay the danger from radioactive contamination, which would just be silly, and won't do anything to help an argument in favor of nuclear energy except create uncertainty. You would think plutonium proponents would want to focus on improving safety rather than just denying obvious science, like AGW deniers and tobacco company scientists.

    •  Stop with the bananarama, (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      cotterperson, CA wildwoman, Sandino, Jim P

      I'm sick of it. 0.0117% of natural potassium is K40. Your potassium levels fluctuate some with diet, and needs constant replenishment. Bananas are a good source. 0.0117% of the potassium in that banana is K40, just like 0.0117% of the potassium in your body is K40. That never changes no matter how many bananas (or tuna fish) you eat.

      If some of the stable potassium in a source of dietary potassium is cesium instead of potassium, you are getting an excess dose of radiation from cesium, in addition to K40. Some people would like to know if there's cesium in their tuna so they can weigh their risks. This is just basically telling them they don't need to know, fuggetaboutit. That's insulting.

      Strontium-90 is an element that in nuclear WMDs and reactors is produced in great amounts along with cesium (and iodine, and xenon, and krypton, and... Nobody's telling us what the strontium levels are, in tuna or anything else, though it's there. They are finally reporting strontium in these latest leaks to the ocean. I am someone who would definitely avoid any fish known to be contaminated by Fukushima cesium. Because I know there's strontium in there too. Telling me K40 is radioactive is irrelevent entirely.

      •  (chuckle) (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        duhban, kalmoth, mamooth

        You linked to the "bananarama" paper. I didn't.

        The paper you linked to states that, in a serving of tuna, the excess radiation due to Fukushima-derived isotopes of Cs is 7.7 nS, 7% of the dose due to naturally occurring 40-K in that same serving. As you stated, people (including myself) would like to know this. It's not irrelevant because it constitutes a baseline for naturally occurring risk. I would never tell anyone they don't need to know the amount.

        90-Sr is not a subject of the paper you link to. And... 90-Sr is in nuclear WMD's? REALLY?

        Xenon is not an issue. Last I heard, xenon does not bioaccumulate. If you have some evidence to the contrary, I would recommend that you publish it.

        Again. The Fukushima disaster is horrible, and if you want to discuss the radiation dosage and contamination in Japan I'll probably agree with you. (I have a daughter living in Tokyo right now.) That alone is enough reason to cast nuclear power in doubt.

        But you wrote the diary headlined "Putting Current Risks in Perspective".

        •  You're framing it wrong. (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          Cs is not 7% of the dose of K40, it's an extra amount of radiation added to the dose of K40. Because - again - your body thinks cesium IS potassium, and only 0.0117% of the potassium atoms are radioactive. All of the cesium atoms are radioactive.

          I was addressing your assertions, not the paper's. It was just linked for an example of diary subject.

          Yes, strontium-90 in bombs. It was a regular big deal back in the day. You too can use the Google to discover this nifty fact for yourself!

          •  We agree on something. (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            duhban, mamooth

            The added radiation a serving of bluefin tuna, due to Fukushima, is an added 7%. For what it's worth. And it's 7.7 nS, which is about 10^-7 times less than the smallest amount that has been proven to show a risk.

            This is 1/10000000 of the lowest dose that's been proven to show risk.

            Again, for maybe the last time since it's getting late - What happened to Japan was horrible. Why mis-state the risk elsewhere, when these misstatements only distract from the real disaster?

            •  I have nowhere misstated the risk. (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Sandino, Jim P

              I have pointed out that the risks are being misstated, and that the purpose of the misstatements is to deceive people about the risks.

              I've said precisely nothing about how much specific risk there is or is not in any given serving of Fukushima contaminated tuna fish. I have established that risk is present if cesium is present: it has not been removed by the concurrent presence of K40 or any other radioactive isotopes.

              People can quantify risks for themselves, even small - but cumulative - risks. No one can say for certain that a single decay of a single isotope (any isotope, primordial or man-made) in a single cellular structure that damages a single nuclide on a single DNA molecule, won't start a cascade that leads to cancer. A miniscule risk, but not a zero risk.

              It's up to individuals to weigh risks as to how much they wish to engage or avoid. I do not believe lying to them about the very existence of risks is helpful.

  •  Always error on the side of caution (9+ / 0-)

    when it comes to nuclear.  What's for sure is nuclear power is one hell of a risky way to light a bulb.  There is no turmoil or debate for me.  Nuclear (fission) power is too risky for further pursuit.  I wish it was different but it isn't.  We need to face that reality and shut them down.   Fukushima is the canary in the "coal mine".  

    This being the case we have some serious consumptive adjustments to do to correct course.  I fear we don't have the will.    

    If we really want to straighten out all this crap we really need to think about shit - Holy Shit.

    by John Crapper on Sat Nov 09, 2013 at 07:28:11 PM PST

    •  I'll agree with you. (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      duhban, John Crapper, Joieau, CA wildwoman

      Although I disagree with the diarist, on the whole I believe that nuclear power is a deal with the devil we don't need.

      •  Heh. If it's a "deal with the devil" (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        John Crapper, Sandino

        then why would you "disagree" that the devil's afoot, and some minions are doing the dirtywork?

        •  You've read enough of what I've had to say. (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          John Crapper, duhban, kalmoth, mamooth

          If you want to put forward a respectable argument, you should stick to the facts.

          I'm a county supervisor. My county has an emergency government center, in the basement of our jail. I hope to god that I'm never called there to be part of the emergency government. On the wall we have maps of the local nuclear power plant, complete with circles (miles distant), expected wind patterns, and evacuation routes.

          I don't need any lectures from you on the hazards of nuclear power.

          Your unsubstantiated claims make it more difficult for those of us who want to get rid of nuclear power. If I try to argue the point, others point out your inaccuracies and false claims and paint my argument with the same brush.

          Stick to the facts. You're hurting the team.

        •  People coming from different perspectives (4+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Mike Kahlow, Joieau, Sandino, worldlotus

          with different sources, with different interpretations and weight given to those sources, trying to offer meaningful guidance with regard to an issue that has been rife with misinformation, obfuscation, and downright distortion.  If those involved are basically against the expansion of nuclear power as it currently exists I say we are basically on the same team.  FWIW.  

          If we really want to straighten out all this crap we really need to think about shit - Holy Shit.

          by John Crapper on Sat Nov 09, 2013 at 08:59:25 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

    •  eh nuclear power is already on the decline (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Mike Kahlow, kalmoth

      because as someone pointed out above  of the economics. Plants are big expensive things that take many years to make and take forever to make that money back.

      The real problem isn't new nuclear (though those are safe) it's plants like Fukushima that are several decades old and really need to be closed.

      Der Weg ist das Ziel

      by duhban on Sat Nov 09, 2013 at 07:41:06 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I'm pretty knowledgeable in economics (9+ / 0-)

        and, I agree, nuclear is dead on that front.  I'm not a physicist or nuclear expert but have above average knowledge.  I've come to the conclusion that fissionable power generation no matter what (New) form it takes is not worth the risk.  I try to keep an open mind and continue to look for a time when I can change that opinion.  Fukushima certainly has not helped in that regard.  

        Spending most of my research time and blogging efforts in the area of climate change I really wish I didn't have to say what I just said.  I have respect for Hansen but a disagree with him on nuclear being a viable option to stave off climate disruption.

        We need to look at efficiency improvements and most importantly consumption reduction/redirection for solutions.  

        In terms of economics we need to fundamentally change the way we measure "wealth" and "economic health" away from consumptive measurements and to resource rejuvenation expansion and non-polluting energy production increases.  

        If we really want to straighten out all this crap we really need to think about shit - Holy Shit.

        by John Crapper on Sat Nov 09, 2013 at 08:01:50 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  which is completely fair and understandable (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Mike Kahlow, John Crapper

          I come down mostly in the cautious but you have to overbuild mindset which generally makes the economics of it unpalatable.

          Der Weg ist das Ziel

          by duhban on Sat Nov 09, 2013 at 08:19:34 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  Not worth what risk? (0+ / 0-)

          Nuclear power is the safest form of electricity generation ever invented. If you were really concerned about safety, you would rush to build more nuclear power plants.


          We are all in the same boat on a stormy sea, and we owe each other a terrible loyalty. -- G.K. Chesterton

          by Keith Pickering on Sat Nov 09, 2013 at 10:29:04 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  You guys need to bring out (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Joieau, Loonesta

            that black box graphic again.  Gee how I miss the old daze...

            Still using my fake name...

            by Rex Freedom on Sun Nov 10, 2013 at 04:48:31 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  Link #1: EXTERNALIZE EVERYTHING (0+ / 0-)

            If there are no bodies on the ground, there is no health impact, directly or indirectly, now or in the future.

            Of the two, hydro is destructive enough, thank you, but you don't mention that:  betting the planet on an imaginary future in which a worst-case manifestation of nuclear damage IS NOT POSSIBLE?  Not sane.  Not even REMOTELY sane.

            I would think the fix we're in re: fossil fuels we be the starkest possible warning AGAINST falling for the pie-in-sky promises of and industry that has NEVER DELIVERED.

            But we're supposed to close our eyes and jump, 'cause hey, they'll catch us...this time...for sure.  'Cause, SCIENCE!

            trying to stay alive 'til I reach 65!

            by chmood on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 07:12:23 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  Link #2: see previous comment (0+ / 0-)

            no bodies on the ground (plausible deniability) = no problem ever.  Everybody dies.  Who could have foreseen?  Nothing to do with us.

            trying to stay alive 'til I reach 65!

            by chmood on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 07:18:10 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  Link #3: It's the old Empire State bldg. joke (0+ / 0-)

            guy jumps off (?) the Empire State building, and as he's passing the 75th floor, another guy sticks his head out a window & asks, "How ya doin'?"

            The guy answers back, OKAY SO FAR

            Is this really the compelling crux of the pro-nuclear argument?

            trying to stay alive 'til I reach 65!

            by chmood on Tue Nov 19, 2013 at 07:26:25 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

  •  Glad someone covered this (7+ / 0-)

    That CNN broadcast, Pandora's Promise, was pure propaganda. As you said, the public's confusion was intentionally manufactured by both government and industry. What few people know is that the government officials consider it the responsibility of the nuclear power industry to educate the public about radiation knowing industry has plenty of motivation ($$$) to mislead.

    Nuclear power plants have been shutting down in the US, not because of politics, as the film claimed, but because other fuels (chiefly cheap gas) are making it even less profitable than it already was (as Ralph Nader pointed out). In that environment, breeder reactors don't look very good either--especially since they still haven't fulfilled the promises made for them. And, really…do we want to make it easier for other countries to produce plutonium?

  •  David Suzuki, scientist (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    To thine ownself be true

    by Agathena on Sun Nov 10, 2013 at 08:51:34 PM PST

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