1. The IPPNWs findings on Chernobyls health affects seem to be based entirely on LNT. This seems to have lead to many different health disorders in the region been attributed to radiation and to a group of doctors trying to undermine UNSCEAR. Rod, what is your view on IPPNW and their findings? Whether or not LNT is flawed, it appears to me to be open to abuse, and i think opponents of nuclear tend to abuse it.

    1. what is your view on IPPNW and their findings?

      They won the Nobel Peace Prize — but then again, so did Yasser Arafat. One is about as honest as the other. Terrorists will be terrorists — they get their way through inspiring fear because it is effective.

      1. There is a sense of irony in what the IPPNW say about nuclear energy, as if the medical profession didnt have a legacy of its own. None of its members seem to have a clue about how energy works, or indeed what actually works. If they did they would be forced to review their stance.

        1. Well, I remember my experience with the “pre-med majors” (they actually had to major in something else to graduate) in college. What struck me most about this crowd is that so many of them were not actually interested in learning anything — that is, they had no genuine intellectual curiosity. To them, college was just one big prep course for a test (the MCAT) that they needed to pass so that they could get into medical school.

          Some people are trained to work on cars, others are trained to work on human bodies. Being a physician is just another profession, and like any profession there’s a broad spectrum of practitioners. A small few are brilliant, most are just mediocre, and there are some who are just plain stupid. I’ll leave it as an exercise for the reader to determine who makes up the membership of the IPPNW.

  2. If the ultra-conservative dose response predictions of LNT models were applied to the airline industry or even the coal industry (see radioactive fly ash), people would not be able to fly and all coal plants would have to be shut down effective immediately. Please sign if you want to put a stop to crippling, unscientific, overregulation.

      1. Awesome, Brian. And points out the fundamental discrimination and selective application of LNT to nuclear energy’s “dangerous radiation” vs just about every other freaking industry on the planet. I’ll have to remember to use it.

        And I think I know which signature # is yours. 😉 Thank you.

        1. Try the calculation for bananas sometime.

          The USA consumes about 6.4 billion pounds of bananas per year. That’s about 20 billion bananas per year (probably between 15 and 32 billion depending on banana size). At .1 uSv per banana, that’s 2 billion uSv per year of exposure. Divided by 100 mSv (lowest dose linked to cancer risk) ==> 20,000 cancers per year caused by bananas.

          We better right on making bananas a heavily regulated and controlled substance. Where, of where is the EPA and the NRC when you need them?

          1. Hey, I hate lima beans and lima beans are worse than bananas. Ban the Bean!
            Oops, better keep my mouth shut. Brazil nuts are worst than both by far, but I like brazil nuts. Oh its all so confusing! 😉

          2. @Jeff
            “…Divided by 100 mSv (lowest dose linked to cancer risk) ==> 20,000 cancers per year caused by bananas….

            100mSv delivers ~1% chance on premature death (incl. cancer).
            => 200 premature death / year.
            And that may be right.

            1. @Bas

              It continues to boggle my mind how a mountain climber wants people to tremble in fear about a computed increase in the risk of eventually getting cancer of ~1%. Even that risk is based on no measured data, only statistically stretched interpolation of long term studies of a population that was exposed to instantaneous doses without any time for natural healing and recovery processes.

              As you know, taking a step in which half of your body weight from a height of perhaps 0.2 meters is concentrated on your foot is not especially dangerous, even if you do it thousands of times per day. Integrating the total force from a moderate day worth of hiking and applying it all at once would cause measurable harm and perhaps even death.

          3. @Rod
            … boggle my mind how a mountain climber wants people to tremble in fear about … increase in the risk of … cancer of ~1%. …
            The risks regarding my future grand-children bothers me most. Especially since many Chernobyl studies have shown that even a slight increase in radiation (`0,3mSv/a) has already significant effects regarding the health of the offspring.
            I do not consider raised levels of still birth, Down, etc in the range of ~30% per mSv/year, as negligible.

            Sweden (~1000mile away) showed that Chernobyl created a significant dip in the intelligence of the schoolchildren that were in the womb at the time of the accident (closely related to the level of local fall out).

            I don’t want people to tremble, and people do not either.
            Just as when a cigarette is smoked in the room (~same risk increase?). Just as they decide to live in busy city centers with many micro-particles, etc (may shorten your live ~2 years).
            Just as US people do not move to Japan because people in Japan live 5 years longer (check UN HDR reports).

            The difference is that smoking, climbing, etc. deliver something in return for the increased risk that is highly valued by the risk taker.
            I can choose my optimal behavior taking all that into account.

            But nuclear radiation risks are imposed by the government and it does not deliver anything in return. Worse!
            It costs money as NPP’s have shown to be more expensive than almost all other forms of electricity generation (if all subsidies are taken away).

            … that risk is based on no measured data, only statistically stretched interpolation of long term studies of a population that was exposed to instantaneous doses without any time for natural healing and recovery processes. …
            That risk is based on accurate population administrations in countries such as Finland, Sweden, Germany. Those show the consequences of the NPP accident at Chernobyl.
            That has nothing to do with “statistically stretched interpolation of long term studies”.

            Thank you for the two links you showed. I studied those in part and hope to finish next week, so I then can give a reaction.
            Both concern mainly the threshold discussion regarding cancer risks only.
            What I miss is study results regarding the conversion of one-time radiation towards protracted radiation?

            Thanks already,

            1. @Bas

              The risks regarding my future grand-children bothers me most. Especially since many Chernobyl studies have shown that even a slight increase in radiation (`0,3mSv/a) has already significant effects regarding the health of the offspring.

              The risk that worries me far more about the health of my already extant granddaughter, her soon to be sibling and her also soon to be cousin is that they will live in a world that still depends on a rapidly disappearing endowment of hydrocarbons with no viable alternative. Without nuclear fission, they will be facing a world of shrinking prospects where fighting over dwindling resources takes a larger and larger human toll each year. They will be facing a world in which ever dirtier and hard to reach fuels become economically competitive because people like you are forcing the very best option off of the table in fear of what poorly-designed, cherry-picked studies indicate is still a very tiny risk. (They MIGHT indicate a rise in certain effects, but the effect you are talking about still only happens to a tiny portion of the population so a small rise in numbers looks like a large rise in the probability of occurrence.)

              I am not going to tell you to take your ideologically drive arguments elsewhere. However, I will admit that none of your arguments have a prayer of convincing me to alter my interpretations of both reality and well designed studies that attempt to understand reality.

          4. Sweden (~1000mile away) showed that Chernobyl created a significant dip in the intelligence of the schoolchildren that were in the womb at the time of the accident (closely related to the level of local fall out).

            Just imagine — after only a few thousand Chernobyl accidents, Swedish children might eventually be as mentally challenged as your typical anti-nuke like Bas here.

            Perhaps they too will possess intellects so blunted as to believe that one or two methodologically weak ecological studies somehow constitute “proof” that negligibly small amounts of radiation cause all manners of health problems, while scores and scores of similar ecological studies investigating naturally occurring variations in radiation of an order of magnitude or more (which have failed to find any significant effect) can be dismissed expeditiously, as if they were never published.

            I agree wholeheartedly that the Chernobyl accident created a significant dip in the intelligence of the population. Interestingly, this dip appears to be almost completely confined to the anti-nuclear population of Europe.

          5. @Bas : It’s becoming obvious you’re using the very *dirty* trick of constantly mixing completely different things in your claims, in order to confuse those who reply to you. That’s a dishonest and manipulative attitude, and I don’t believe someone can really act like that without knowing what he’s doing.

            When you’re challenged that the effect you claim should be visible, you revert to the conventional LNT values claiming effects that are too small to measure. Which in other word mean they are too small to be falsified, so such a claim of hazard is not scientific in Karl Popper’s meaning.

            But when you make your own claims, you just *don’t* apply the LNT but make *other* complete non-sense claims, like 0.3mSv/year having a visible effect, ~30% per mSv/year of still birth, Down syndrom. All of this has been proven false by many serious studies, and when I look at the OMS or UNSCEAR report they unambiguously report no link has ever been found between this and radiation.
            I explained earlier the study you referenced about that didn’t make sense. I forgot to specify pubmed doesn’t include it, but it’s however one of the source used by Yablokov/Nesterenko in their Tchernobyl report, which NYAS sponsored review by M. Balonov from St. Petersburg’s Institute of Radiation Hygiene, was absolutely damning as explained here earlier : https://atomicinsights.com/2011/10/devastating-review-of-yablokovs-chernobyl-consequences-of-the-catastrophe-for-people-and-the-environment.html

          6. @Brian,
            Sheet ~20 of the presentation gives insight in the different effects of radiation: http://www.suda.su.se/simsam/SIMSAM%20workshop%202012/Palme_2012.pdf

            My post concerned only the heredity effects of radiation.
            You refer to raised cancer risks. I’ll address that below.

            Just imagine — after only a few thousand Chernobyl accidents, Swedish children might eventually be as mentally challenged …
            The figures indicate that a few hundred Chernobyl’s are enough to end up with a retarded Swedish society (despite the great distance to Chernobyl).

            .. Two … weak ecological studies somehow constitute “proof” that negligibly … radiation cause … health problems, while …similar ecological studies investigating naturally occurring variations in radiation … dismissed …

            Except ‘Chernobyl’ studies, I have not seen epidemiological studies regarding the heredity effects of low level radiation.
            There are many ‘Chernobyl’ studies from Norway, Sweden, Finland, Germany, etc.

            The state of Bayern in Germany delivered an unique research opportunity as:
            – the fall-out changed greatly between nearby districts with similar demographic, etc characteristics (was depended on rainfall).
            – Bayern is the only country that had an administration regarding congenital malformations before and after Chernobyl.

            So the research group could contain millions of subjects, that could be easily compared regarding congenital malformation with similar groups that got ~10 times less Chernobyl radiation; and with the same situation before Chernobyl in the same district. That delivered the highly significant (p<0,001) results regarding still birth, Down, etc.

            Your background radiation remark
            High background radiation implies ~10mSv/a.
            LNT predicts raised cancer chance of ~0,1% for 10mSv.

            You need a study group of millions of subjects and a control group with similar characteristics regarding chance on cancer (smoking, asbestos, micro particles, drinking), to find that difference. Check the figures in this report to find the minimum group sizes you need:

            I think that the huge group sizes needed and the lacking administration of congenital malformation, are reasons that I didn’t see a serious study regarding the heredity effects (other than DNA aberrations) of low level radiation.

            The fact that there is no tool accurate enough to measure, does not imply that there is a threshold regarding the chance for cancer.
            Indications from LSS and the fact that asbestos and nicotine showed thresholds do not exist, make it far more plausible that LNT continues downward with a decreasing or increasing slope.

            We should be happy that Chernobyl created the circumstances that allowed us to enhance our knowledge of low level radiation effects on humans and heredity.

            Especially since recent research makes it clear that we still know very, very little about the cancer mechanism at DNA/RNA/Cell levels. Even major things as the by-stander effect, the repair mechanism (how many times well?), the defense mechanism of the cancer cell, etc. do not have good explanations.

            The research group of a friend builds models about cancer mechanisms at DNA/RNA/Cell levels. Their main problem is the lack for storage capacity (millions of Terra bytes needed) and CPU power. Here you find a readable short summary of their present knowledge: http://delta.tudelft.nl/artikel/anticipating-strategic-moves-of-tumours/26468

          7. @Bas : You obviously have no idea that very near Stockholm it’s possible to find hotspots at 60 mSv/year of radiation, cf http://nuclearpoweryesplease.org/blog/2012/07/17/radioactive-tourism-a-trip-to-the-ytterby-mine/

            Knowing that shows claims that a minuscule amount of radiation from Tchernobyl had a large effect are obvious nonsense.

            The presentation you link too claim the small radiation amount had an effect on the percentage of child qualified to high school, but that this disappeared 2 years later with to the child from the same areas having better results than the average. So this means it would have been I131 with no effect at all from the Cesium, since it’s still there after two years ? (they still try to correlate with Cesium not admitting this) But what could possibly explain they have almost 1 percent point better results than the average 2 years later, except the fact that it’s nothing more than the usual random “noise” in the measurements for a small group ? And why would the only relevant measure be the qualification to high school, and nothing else ? When you know that qualification to high school depends a lot on the sociocultural level of child and little on an actual measure of their intelligence.

            Sounds like numerology where the people who want to get some result will keep amongst hundred of possible tests the one that can be massaged to appear to sustain the result they want, using here a variation from 88.5% down to 87% that is negated the next year by going up to 90% and then one year later 92% as supposed to prove their theory. But if this didn’t give the expected result they would use instead the qualification to university, literacy level, average height, average weight, time spent per day in front of television, etc. the usual trick of numerology.

          8. My post concerned only the heredity effects of radiation.

            Bas – Really? So you’re concerned that those stillborn children you keep harping about might pass on their stillbornness to their offspring?

            Geez … Your posts become more and more ridiculous the more you write. Please continue. The entertainment value is priceless.

            You need a study group of millions of subjects and a control group with similar characteristics regarding chance on cancer (smoking, asbestos, micro particles, drinking), the find that difference. Check the figures in this report to find the minimum group sizes you need: …

            Why are you babbling on about control groups? All of the “studies” that you have referenced are classic ecological studies. There is no “control group.” All of the results are compared between groups, none of which serve as a control. Don’t you know the difference between an ecological study, a case-control study, and a genuine cohort study? Obviously not.

            Yes, I already know how do to a statistical power calculation, by the way. You’re not telling me anything new. I also know that the heredity effects of radiation have been examined in the LSS research, which did have a genuine cohort to follow. The first results began to be published about a quarter of a century ago, roughly 45 years after the bombing — it takes that long for heredity effects to show up enough to be detected. The LSS researchers failed to find heredity effects in the children of A-bomb survivors then, and they still fail to find any effects today.

            Considering this history and considering that only 27 years have passed since the Chernobyl accident, I find any claims of evidence of heredity effects from Chernobyl to be highly suspect, to say the least.

            Since you don’t understand even the basics of the science, it is no wonder that you have chosen to cite a slide presentation by a husband-and-wife team of second-rate economists (economists? what?! why?) as your primary source. You’ll have to work hard to get more pathetic than that.

            Bas – How much more punishment are you going to take here before you bail like you have at some other blogs you have been polluting with similar nonsense recently?

          9. @Rod
            The risk … they will live in a world that still depends on … hydrocarbons with no viable alternative … where fighting over dwindling resources takes a … human toll each year …

            Agree, we should reduce carbon burning. For me the CO2/climate issue is also rather important. I propose to raise taxes to deter the burning of carbon and use that money to stimulate (research on) long lasting alternatives . If there is a surplus after that, general taxes can be lowered. So I propose:

            1. Transportation & heating take most carbon and produce most pollution shortening peoples live:
            – Tenfold the tax on gas for cars to ~€10/liter (now ~€1/liter in NL).
            US tax to be raised accordingly to ~$40/gallon.
            That stimulates economic (smaller) cars, electric cars, (e-)biking, etc.
            – Implement comparable tax on plane fuel (now no tax at all, while we inhale their micro particles, etc.), heating gas/coal/oil, etc.

            – Stimulate research regarding better batteries, hydrogen, etc. for cars (hydrogen can easily be produced via electricity)
            – delete all tax on insulation (may be subsidize it)
            – subsidies to develop cheap/better heat pumps serving buildings & private homes. In NL we have some that use the Sterling engine.

            2. Stimulate the move to renewable energy:
            – delete all (incl. import) taxes on wind mills and PV panels;
            – add huge taxes for old coal PP’s, and somewhat less for gas & fluidized bed PP’s.
            – stimulate research for big (~20MW) & more economic wind mills
            – stimulate research for cheap high yield (>50%) PV panel production.
            That 50% implies 3 times the present yield per area.

            And most important:
            – stimulate research regarding electricity to fuel conversion . These conversions should become efficient (>90%) and cheap (<1cent/kWh).
            As far as I know, only Scotland is implementing a pilot (for their surplus wind mill production). The Germans are more advanced regarding electricity to gas conversion.

            These conversions deliver the last piece towards a permanent healthy/rich society (electricity from PV panels will become cheap <2cent/kWh). Citizens in busy traffic areas (city centers) will also live a few years longer due to less pollution.

            3. Further:
            – Stimulate fusion research more, as we need that for the farther future (<0,1cent/kWh).
            – Remove other subsidies, such as liability subsidies that (unsafe) NPP's now get. That will either make them more safe, or close them.

            …Without nuclear fission … facing … shrinking prospects … forcing the very best option off of the table …
            The new more safe NPP’s in Europe have a cost price of ~10cent/kWh, despite the liability subsidies. PV-panels, incl. storage, will deliver a cheaper electricity solution at ~2022. After that the difference will become greater as NPP’s cost price do not fall, while PV panels will continue to fall in price.

            That is also the reason that operators now insist on price guarantees during ~30years from governments for the electricity the NPP will produce. In NL the preparations for a new NPP were stopped when our government refused to give those price guarantees (they got already the big liability subsidies).

          10. @Brian
            … heredity effects of radiation…
            I meant including the unborn & babies at the time of the exposure.
            I now understand the word ‘heredity’ does not include that. Sorry.

            … heredity effects … examined in the LSS …
            Interesting. Please can you indicate which report?

            … chosen to cite a slide presentation … as your primary source. ..
            I did not. I only referred to the sheets nr. ~20 to demonstrate the different effects of radiation. Please read my post.

            If you want you can criticize that sheet as it did not include:
            – repair mechanisms
            – the RNA and Cell level (DNA multiplication supporting nucleus ‘s, etc)
            Just to name a few.
            But that would deliver a fairly complicated diagram.

            … before you bail like you have at some other blogs ..
            Did that only with the blog of Joris van Dorp, as he deleted posts of me that contained information he could not refute, with the argument that those were repeats, without showing it. I do not intent to repeat.

            I also spent time at few other blogs, highly value the nuclear cafe blog.
            But my time is limited, so I had to choose.
            I find the blog’s with people that contradict with sound arguments when I am wrong, the most interesting (e.g. reactions of Jmdesp & Rod). Those allow me to learn.
            (sorry Jmdesp. I ran out of time, intent to respond to morrow)

          11. Interesting. Please can you indicate which report?

            Bas – It’s not my job to do your research for you, but if you want a comprehensive summary as a starting point, then perhaps you should consult BEIR VII, which describes the results from the LSS studies. Here is an excerpt:

            Naturally occurring genetic (i.e., hereditary) diseases contribute substantially to illness and death in human populations. These diseases arise as a result of alterations (mutations) occurring in the genetic material (DNA) contained in the germ cells (sperm and ova) and are heritable (i.e., can be transmitted to offspring and subsequent generations). …

            This concern moved to center stage in the aftermath of the detonation of atomic weapons over Hiroshima and Nagasaki in World War II. Extensive research programs to examine the adverse genetic effects of radiation in the children of A-bomb survivors were soon launched. …

            The aim of the early human genetic studies carried out in Japan was to obtain a direct measure of adverse effects in the children of A-bomb survivors. The indicators that were used included adverse pregnancy outcomes (i.e., stillbirths, early neonatal deaths, congenital abnormalities); deaths among live-born infants over a follow-up period of about 26 years; growth and development of the children; chromosomal abnormalities; and specific types of mutations. …

            More than four decades have elapsed since the genetic studies in Japan were initiated. In 1990, the final results of those studies were published. They show (as earlier reports published from time to time over the intervening years showed) that there are no statistically significant adverse effects detectable in the children of exposed survivors, indicating that at the relatively low doses sustained by survivors (of the order of about 400 mSv or less), the genetic risks, as measured by the indicators mentioned earlier, are very low. Other, mostly small-scale studies of the children of those exposed to high doses of radiation for radiotherapy of cancers have also shown no detectable increases in the frequencies of genetic diseases.

            This is what the US National Academy of Sciences has to say on the topic.

          12. @jmdesp
            … Mixing … different things in your claims, in order to confuse those who reply to you. …
            My post was my honest answer to Rod’s question about my primary motives (“…boggle my mind how …

            Assume you do not intent to restrict the discussion to only cancer generating capabilities of radiation in adults only, while it is >70years clear that radiation has many more effects that are also serious.

            … challenged … effect you claim should be visible, you revert to … LNT values claiming effects … too small to measure. …
            I explained they are not to small to measure, only difficult & expensive to measure in epidemic studies as you need such big cohorts.

            So LSS measurements are not capable to detect significant results at the ~50mSv level due to the small cohort, as the publication of the US National Academy of Science shows (see my earlier posts for the link).

            Chernobyl offered an unique chance to do such measurements against relative low costs. So researchers in W-Europe grabbed that chance. That delivered results showing different effects of very low levels of extra radiation (~0,3mSv) on fetus’s in the womb.
            Those are not strange.
            Based on medical research, if possible physicians do not X-ray a (pregnant) womb while the amount of radiation is smaller.

            Of course no studies regarding cancers in adults as:
            – it is known that at low levels those show only after >20years
            – with ~0,1mSv extreme big cohorts are needed (using LNT).

            … make your own claims, you just *don’t* apply the LNT …nonsense … 0.3mSv/year having a visible effect …
            Researches from the official German institute (as well as others) found these effects. No extrapolation needed, so why apply LNT?

            … ~30% per mSv/year of still birth, Down syndrom. All of this has been proven false by many serious studies … OMS or UNSCEAR … report no link has ever been found between this and radiation…
            Amazing, as I remember vaguely medical studies that showed differently (due to X-ray). So please can you show studies?

            … Yablokov/Nesterenko in their Tchernobyl report … review by M. Balonov from St. Petersburg’s Institute …was absolutely damning …
            Thanks for the link.
            If the report was damming wrong, I assume it to be removed from the NYAS site by now, >2year later. But it is still there, even with a recommendation: “…Written by leading authorities from Eastern Europe…”.
            May be the down playing of Chernobyl’s harms by the Russian authorities played a role (assuming Balonov wants to hold his nice position).

            “… near Stockholm … hotspots at 60 mSv/year of radiation …”
            Interesting, but as nobody or only few live there, it’s not relevant.

            … why would the only relevant measure be the qualification to high school …
            There are only few options to measure. E.g. IQ measurement is not possible as that was not done before Chernobyl.
            Agree that the short living Iodine fall-out probably played an important role, so the effect vanished in the years later on.

            Also agree that the methodology is not optimal. However:

            – I do not know a better study design (against reasonable costs) as it’s not possible to change the limited measurements regarding the situation before Chernobyl.

            – other studies e.g. from Finland and Norway found similar results

  3. Ok, I have signed this and added a link to my Facebook page. 1/20 of the background radiation could be compared to taking my grandchild outside and standing by the traffic on a busy street then telling the grandkid that her breathing needs to be quieter because I can still detecte the sound of her breathing using a stethoscope held to her back.

  4. Occupy Fukushima, aka Re-Occupy Fukushima. (Or, evacuate Denver.) Is there no one who can take a photo of a person holding a Geiger Counter (or some other instrument) at Grand Central Station, Denver, Ramsar Iran, Guarapari Brazil, and so forth, and compare that to the evacuated areas of Japan? Is this so freaking difficult? If a musician can organize street singers to be recorded doing a version of Stand By Me (in the same key) in about 10 cities across the world, it seems to me possible to do a minimal video/photograph series as I suggest. It would seem to be a public service to the ridiculously panicked people of Japan. I signed the petition, but nothing will come of it. Something may come of a video as I suggest.

      1. Thanks GRLCowan for the Guarapari video link. Short and funny. Now, if we could get someone to sponsor a project to send in similar very short videos showing geiger counter readings with the same standard (It was uSv/hour — microSieverts an hour) from all over the world, including various Fukushima areas, and get someone to edit it, then we may have something. I.e. something that people can post to their Facebook pages; i.e. something that can go viral. It must be short and humor is very helpful. I’ll volunteer to travel to Ramsar, Iran. (Just kidding. They frown on atheists there.) I think Yokahoma Michael might volunteer to jump the fences at Fukushima to video in the forbidden areas. Especially if he gets his ball irradiated at Guarapari first.

        1. @Paul
          … I’ll volunteer to travel to Ramsar, Iran. (Just kidding. They frown on atheists there…
          Paul they do not.
          Any tourist is quite welcome in Iran.
          I spent a nice long vacation skiing and climbing mountains there. Being Dutch I joined with an English group..
          No problems at all.
          You feel more free there than in Saoudi Arabia.

    1. Well, one thing about the evacuated areas in Japan is that they are evacuated. Nobody is supposed to go in and out, and roads are barricaded. You could take readings outside in recently reopened areas, though it probably would not have the same impact. Otherwise this is a good idea.

      1. Michael;

        I assume you’re in Japan? If so, would you know the penalties there for anyone entering the evacuated areas? Is there any talk of Fukushima citizens groups who plan to mob and crash the barricades and resettle their homes? Surely SOMEONE or group over there has questioned the need to maintain this evacuated area! They ought check the politicians in control of the gate for fossil funds!

        James Greenidge
        Queens NY

        1. James:

          I’m not Michael, but do live in Japan. I don’t know the exact penalties for entering the evacuated areas without permission, but you can get permission for limited visits, depending upon location. And at least a couple of people were arrested for presenting forged passes.

          There is a fairly “famous” man who refused to evacuate from Tomioka, named Naoto Matsumura, and who now cares for many of the domesticated and farm animals left behind. Just google his name for more information, from the appreciative to the sensational (“most radioactive man on earth!”)

          Here is the current state of the evacuation zone, some of which has been reclassified, in Japanese:

          In English, Namie-cho, the town with the “2013/4/1” designation from the map, was rezoned to allow residents to at least visit without staying overnight. It’s all in the article, but much of the evacuation area is expected to be opened for more permanent return within a couple of years.

          The three zones described in the article are the pink, orange-ish, and green areas on the map, from most contaminated to least.

          Like anywhere in the world, fear and bad news sells easier to the general population than good. See below for an article in Japanese about three women who spoke about the need to “understand nuclear power” (actually an important issue!) at a university in Nagoya. The gist of their talk was emotional and about fear, however. One of the women actually “evacuated” from the exact town where I live, located in Chiba Prefecture and touted as a known “hot spot”.


          Although we did experience a higher level of fallout compared to other areas after the plant explosions, due to specific rainfall patterns, current airborne readings in the center of town and around where I live vary from 0.05 uSv/hr to around 0.3 uSv/hr. Just over a year after the earthquake it was 0.15 uSv/hr outside our front door, and only 0.29 uSv/hr at 5 cm above the dirt or grass in our garden.

          You also find people doing what those in the article below did:

          The lawsuit was rejected (at appeal), incidentally, and people were reminded that they may leave voluntarily if they choose.

          Daily life in and around Tokyo shows little change from before the earthquake, except for the need for earthquake preparedness, and electricity conservation when possible. Most people are excited that the economy appears to be back on track. But you also will find a small number of people who go to extremes to avoid anything that may be “contaminated”.

          My daughter’s field trip to Mt. Tsukuba was cancelled because a couple of parents were against it. And we decided to not invite her friends over to dig up sweet potatoes from our garden last autumn just to avoid possible problems. Think “radioactive soil!” Or the need to dispose of any yams that their kids may bring home. They were delicious, by the way! But for most of the population not living very close to the evacuation zones (or former residents therein), life is good.

          I haven’t heard of any clamor among former residents to return en masse, but I’ll let you know if I do.

          1. Thanks for those invaluable man-on-the-spot tips! Wish I could give any pro-nuclear blogs over there some moral air support! Too bad it’s too pricey to ship your yams over here to make a pie! 😀

            James Greenidge
            Queens NY

    2. Here a picture of the dosimeter showing 7 μSv/hour (60 mSv/year) at Ytterby, just a few kilometers away from Stockholm.
      Stockholm itself is 2 mSv/year which is quite high already in fact. So where are the results showing more Down Syndrome, more still births, worse school results in Stockholm ?

  5. Interestingly, a few years ago there was a scam by coriean and other synthetic counter top dealers in Texas going around to people with granite table tops and claiming they were exposing their family to “radiation” and the should use the non-radiactive syn stuff. Seriously. I would of expected this in Florida but Texas? (sorry Rod, but the state DOES have a reputation you know).

    The dealers of course were counting on the higher particle count coming off the minute amounts of uranium in the granite.

  6. This petition popping up on a chronically Green supportive administration hell-bent to run all on “alternative sources” to appeal to “progressives” and greens and Europe smells to high heaven to me. I mean, honestly, posting such an publicly arcane science research issue as a “petition”? Have they ever done same for any others outside whales and polar bears? Why do I think that after a while they’ll pop up another “petition” for windmills and solar farms which every school kid in America will be coaxed to sign and at the end of the summer Carny will hold up a very short sheet in one hand and a ream of paper in the other and say of the short one “this petition is how many want to change radiation standards to have more nuclear” and he turns to the ream “and this is how many Americans are for safe clean natural renewable sources, so I guess the people have spoken about the course of our energy and environmental aims.” Sure, that’s a simplistic assumption, but I bet that’s the current thinking in that mansion. We better need a friend in the major media who’ll showcase nuclear views and advocates, not any phoney “petition.”.

    James Greenidge
    Queens NY

  7. Mr Greendridge,

    It’s not phony! The nuclear industry needs to get in the habit of being political. Why? Because it is only politics that is preventing more nuclear energy!

    I agree that we also need better marketing, advertising and education. But until TPTB get their heads out of their asses and let professional handle that, we individuals in the industry need to do whatever it takes to change the status quo.

    I agree that the petition won’t “change” anything. But symbolism is important. There are a lot of Californians on the list. California=Democrat. That sends a message.

    So go sign it, if you haven’t already done so. Please. And let me know your siggie #. ^_^

    1. Andrea, as a “pol baby” myself here in Queens, I understand your views, but if there were any overt and unabashed non-nuclear plant district politicians out there who generally support nuclear power they would’ve poked their heads up and waved their hands to support nuclear long ago. They’re afraid of getting whacked and deposed by greens in the media and infecting schools from junior high to college. I severely doubt any arcane technical issue “petition” that won’t directly benefit them is going ram any iron rods up their spines to act different, especially under a hard-core “alternative energy” spend-free administration. The MOX and possible TVA nuke suspensions things is just the sad tip of what’s going to happen to nuclear here. I mean if Rod emailed every member of Congress to take just five minutes from the golf course and kissing babies to get on the Atomic Show I wonder how many yes responses he’d get. Like gold certificates, symbolism works only if you have real stuff backing it up and nuclear energy will take a lot of “stuff” to prove it’s not the bogeyman the public perceives it for them to even consider it as a friendly energy option, and that “stuff” is hard de-FUDing public education via Ads, PSAs, and school literature outreach. This can be done RIGHT NOW if the public affairs offices of nuclear unions and individual plants and nuclear professional organizations got off their duffs and did their jobs. No, I’m not being harsh; if one were that “effective” promoting their company’s product in other companies they’d quickly be on food stamps. Greenpeace and Co. royally get over the public by mass (warped) education to fright them to sign anti-nuke petitions and protest en mass. How’s a non-sexy obscure LNT debate going to tingle the public’s concern, much less a pol’s? We have to focus somewhere else that’s far more in our control and access and that’s direct mass education, and once the public is adequately nuke educated, so will the spines of politicians be shored up enough to dare raise their hands and voices for it.

      James Greenidge
      Queens NY

  8. May be the down playing of Chernobyl’s harms by the Russian authorities played a role (assuming Balonov wants to hold his nice position).

    Bas – You’re getting desperate in your defense of junk science. Balonov’s was not the only critical review of this deeply flawed work.

    The only favorable review I have seen was written by one of the authors of the also deeply flawed TORCH report, which was commissioned by the highly anti-nuclear European Green Party. The review reads like one famous science fiction writer complimenting another science fiction writer’s work for his ingenuity at creating an alternate reality.

    A second review, this time written by someone who does not harbor a serious anti-nuclear bias, also was published in the same issue of Radiation Protection Dosimetry. This review, by Monty Charles of the UK, was largely critical of the book.

    Mona Dreicer reviewed the book for Environmental Health Perspectives, a journal that is highly respected in the field of epidemiology. Her review also was highly critical of the book, noting the following flaws (emphasis mine):

    The inconsistent use of scientific units, the grouping of data collected with variable time and geographic scales, the lack of essential background information, and the consistent exclusion of scientific research that reported lesser or no negative impacts leave objective readers with very limited means for forming their own judgments without doing their own additional extensive research. In fact, many major technical studies and reports on the impacts of the Chernobyl accident have been excluded.

    by discounting the widely accepted scientific method for associating cause and effect (while taking into account the uncertainties of dose assessment and measurement of impacts), the authors leave us with only with their assertion that the data in this volume “document the true scale of the consequences of the Chernobyl catastrophe.”

    Yet another review of the book was written by Sergei Jargin for Radiation and Environmental Biophysics. The title of his review, “Overestimation of Chernobyl consequences: poorly substantiated information published,” pretty much summarizes his opinion of the work.

    Bas – You’re not doing yourself any favors by relying on junk science such as this. The more you stubbornly defend this junk, the more irrational you make yourself appear.

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