Nuclear

Published on February 25th, 2014 | by Sandy Dechert

17

Canada Water Tests Positive For Fukushima Cesium-134

February 25th, 2014 by




Post-disaster Fukushima power complex

Bad news from the annual American Geophysical Union’s Ocean Sciences Meeting in Honolulu. Researchers there announced today that radioactive isotopes from the Fukushima nuclear disaster, when three reactors melted down after the March 11, 2011, Tohoku earthquake and subsequent mega-tsunami, have finally reached the West Coast.

John Smith, a research scientist at Canada’s Bedford Institute of Oceanography in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, told the AGU meeting that since 2011 he and colleagues had measured a radioactive plume from nuclear complex at ocean monitoring stations west of Vancouver. Fukushima’s radiation reached Canada before the US on the powerful Kuroshio Current. It’s predicted to flow south and then circle back to Hawaii.

There is some good news, though. The two radioactive cesium isotopes found in Canada (cesium-134 and cesium-137) are far below the nation’s safety limit, at least for now. In Scientific American, Becky Oskin points out:

“The U.S. safety limit for cesium levels in drinking water is about 28 Becquerels, the number of radioactive decay events per second, per gallon (or 7,400 Becquerels per cubic meter). For comparison, uncontaminated seawater contains only a few Becquerels per cubic meter of cesium.”

The Fukushima cesium radiation is expected to peak in about two years. The nuclear accident also released other radioactive isotopes, such as iodine-131.

Bahar Gholipour of LiveScience elaborates on the significance of the discovery:

“Some of the radioactive elements released in the accident, such as cesium-134, have a short half-life; they decay to half their original amount within two years. However, cesium-137, which has a half-life of more than 30 years, continues to be a source of radiation.”

“The only cesium-134 in the North Pacific is there from Fukushima,” Smith said. Cesium-137, which remains in the environment for decades, is still present in the Pacific from nuclear weapons tests and nuclear power plant discharges.

Ken Buesseler, a senior scientist at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institute in Woods Hole, Mass., says that tests on eight U.S. beaches indicate that the Fukushima radiation has not yet reached Washington, California, or Hawaii, although leftover cesium-137 levels at U.S. beaches were 1.3 to 1.7 Becquerels per cubic meter. His team is now awaiting results from a February 2014 sampling trip.

Two competing models have predicted that Fukushima radiation will begin to arrive on the West Coast about now. Both expect it to peak in 2016. They differ by a factor of 10 in predicted peak concentration of cesium, but both estimates are well below the highest level in the Baltic Sea after Chernobyl.

Convinced that even low levels of contamination should be monitored, Buessler launched a website called “How Radioactive is Our Ocean?” in January. The site allows scientists and officials to propose and fund new sampling locations along the West Coast. The public is invited to donate for analysis of existing water samples.

In a similar effort we reported last month, Steven L. Manley of Cal State at Long Beach and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory’s Kai Vetter have set up monitoring off the state’s coast throughout 2013 to determine the extent of radioactive contamination in the state’s extensive nearshore kelp forest.

Meanwhile, back in Japan, radioactive water continues to escape from the Fukushima site. The Tokyo Electric Power Company had denied leakage until last August, when the evidence became undeniable. TEPCO reported a new leak just last week.

It’s also ironic that this news comes at a time when residents of the Fukushima area are being allowed to return to their homes, TEPCO has just stopped the fuel removal operation at Reactor Unit 4, and Japanese politics is heating up about whether or not to recommit to nuclear power.

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About the Author

covers environmental, health, renewable and conventional energy, and climate change news. She's worked for groundbreaking environmental consultants and a Fortune 100 health care firm, writes two top-level blogs on Examiner.com, ranked #2 on ONPP's 2011 Top 50 blogs on Women's Health, and attributes her modest success to an "indelible habit of poking around to satisfy my own curiosity."



  • pat patterson

    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-02-25/tepco-says-fukushima-radiation-significantly-undercounted.html

    In case you still have doubts about the severity. TEPCO is now verified as incorrectly calculating all samples for atleast 2 years. They have under-reported levels. The radioactive levels are even higher than reported.

    • M_111

      They KNEW they were under reporting. They come up with one excuse after another. Between this site, enenews, fukushima-diary, fairwinds, the info is out there for people to find, Why they choose to read or watch only MSM is beyond me.

  • pat patterson

    http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-02-25/tepco-says-fukushima-radiation-significantly-undercounted.html

    In case you still have doubts about the severity. TEPCO is now verified as incorrectly calculating all samples for atleast 2 years. They have under-reported levels. The radioactive levels are even higher than reported.

    • M_111

      They KNEW they were under reporting. They come up with one excuse after another. Between this site, enenews, fukushima-diary, fairwinds, the info is out there for people to find, Why they choose to read or watch only MSM is beyond me.

  • pat patterson

    “There is some good news, though. The two radioactive cesium isotopes found in Canada (cesium-134 and cesium-137) are far below the nation’s safety limit, at least for now. In Scientific American, Becky Oskin points out”.

    You do realize that there were atleast 3 seperate meltdown events (Reactors 1-3), combined with atleast 3 seperate (and definitely more) hydrogen explosions, combined with the fact that Reactor 3 used MOX fuel (Plutonium). Also there was atleast 20 different isotopes created during the meltdowns – amercium, Silver-110, neptunium, plutonium, Strontium-90, Cobalt-60 and of course the commonly cited Cs-137/134 and I-131. We also know that SPF4 has boiled dry atleast once according to the NRC, and was a rumbling boil in the first week. The entire basement was blown out from hydrogen explosion as well and the basements of all the buildings are completely flooded with extremely contaminated water. They are also measuring radioactivity levels from 1 Sv/hr to in excess of 10 SIEVERTS per hour and that is what TEPCO has decided to tell us. It is obviously way, way higher.

    All of which is being dilluted and transfered to the groundwater, surrounding areas and eventually into the ocean with 400 tonnes of pumped SEAWATER that is actively exchanged with groundwater… This has been the case since Week 1. 1000 tonnes per day for 3 years of seawater, groundwater and melted corium exchange. This does not take into consideration aerosols, and other transport vectors for the radioactive isotopes and other meltdown events which HAVE occurred. (Reactors 1-3 are still steaming to this very day). Also the contaminated water problem is now in the TRILLION of Bq/L containing isotopes.

    Merely saying Cs-134/137 will be dillute and/or has low half-life is lying, as is comparing INGESTED RADIOACTIVE isoptes to ‘eating bananas’ (common argument). Also, Ken Buesseler is already a proven disinformation artist on this. You only have to look at his credentials, and sponsors to realize where his true agenda will end up. I have been following this since the first day after the hydrogen explosion on 3/14/2011.

    If you want real and updated (every single day) news since 3/11 check these sites:
    Enenews dot com
    Fukushima-diary dot com

    In order to understand the magnitude of this, you need to start from day 1 and read up to today. You will realize how ridiculous TEPCO and the Japanese government has been, how many times they have lied and are still lying, and how much of a global coverup this has become with governments all over the world still pretending this is not worldwide issue that will affect hundreds of millions of people within the next 20 years and more in the next 50.

    • Bob

      I’ve been following this since day 1 from lots of different sources to corroborate the evidence. Seems like the World is getting thicker with Disinfo & much more work is needed to get the real facts. This article is too similar to the MSM pacifying tone. It doesn’t jive with all the other news I’ve reviewed daily.

      I just wanted to say I liked your comments here as they are truer to the reality we are experiencing. Bioconcentration, etc is also something for all people to be aware of. Search Wiki. Got to run, sorry!

      Anyways, again, great stuff Pat!!! Take care!

      • M_111

        I know exactly what you mean. The day it happened, I watched as the cover ups began. Well, the cover ups began before March 11, but that’s another story. TEPCO, Japan, the US govt, etc. have been trying to hide what really happened and just how much is going into the environment for so long. It is now getting to the point where it can’t be hidden anymore. Sure, radiation may be “invisible” but its effects are not. I tell people that they can’t hide their head in the sand forever! I made the mistake of posting on CNN website for the first time the other day under the article about how Cancer was going to be the #1 killer in the next few years. The responses I received were unbelievable. I have never come across so many Sheeple in one place before. I normally would respond again but I just walked away. More trouble than it is worth.

    • Mike Robins

      ENENEWS is a fear mongering website with no credible scientific info and everything on there is BS – My uncle is a nuclear physicist and said that site should not be referenced for credible info

  • pat patterson

    “There is some good news, though. The two radioactive cesium isotopes found in Canada (cesium-134 and cesium-137) are far below the nation’s safety limit, at least for now. In Scientific American, Becky Oskin points out”.

    You do realize that there were atleast 3 seperate meltdown events (Reactors 1-3), combined with atleast 3 seperate (and definitely more) hydrogen explosions, combined with the fact that Reactor 3 used MOX fuel (Plutonium). Also there was atleast 20 different isotopes created during the meltdowns – amercium, Silver-110, neptunium, plutonium, Strontium-90, Cobalt-60 and of course the commonly cited Cs-137/134 and I-131.

    All of which is being dilluted and transfered to the groundwater, surrounding areas and eventually into the ocean with 400 tonnes of pumped SEAWATER that is actively exchanged with groundwater… This has been the case since Week 1. 1000 tonnes per day for 3 years of seawater, groundwater and melted corium exchange. This does not take into consideration aerosols, and other transport vectors for the radioactive isotopes and other meltdown events which HAVE occurred. (Reactors 1-3 are still steaming to this very day). Also the contaminated water problem is now in the TRILLION of Bq/L containing isotopes.

    Merely saying Cs-134/137 will be dillute and/or has low half-life is lying, as is comparing INGESTED RADIOACTIVE isoptes to ‘eating bananas’ (common argument). Also, Ken Buesseler is already a proven disinformation artist on this. You only have to look at his credentials, and sponsors to realize where his true agenda will end up. I have been following this since the first day after the hydrogen explosion on 3/14/2011.

    If you want real and updated (every single day) news since 3/11 check these sites:
    Enenews dot com
    Fukushima-diary dot com

    • Bob

      I’ve been following this since day 1 from lots of different sources to corroborate the evidence. Seems like the World is getting thicker with Disinfo & much more work is needed to get the real facts. This article is too similar to the MSM pacifying tone. It doesn’t jive with all the other news I’ve reviewed daily.

      I just wanted to say I liked your comments here as they are truer to the reality we are experiencing. Bioconcentration, etc is also something for all people to be aware of. Search Wiki. Got to run, sorry!

      Anyways, again, great stuff Pat!!! Take care!

      • M_111

        I know exactly what you mean. The day it happened, I watched as the cover ups began. Well, the cover ups began before March 11, but that’s another story. TEPCO, Japan, the US govt, etc. have been trying to hide what really happened and just how much is going into the environment for so long. It is now getting to the point where it can’t be hidden anymore. Sure, radiation may be “invisible” but its effects are not. I tell people that they can’t hide their head in the sand forever! I made the mistake of posting on CNN website for the first time the other day under the article about how Cancer was going to be the #1 killer in the next few years. The responses I received were unbelievable. I have never come across so many Sheeple in one place before. I normally would respond again but I just walked away. More trouble than it is worth.

  • Sheana Neitz

    Frac water, tailing ponds, and radiation…. canadas response… cut back and gag science. We have no ethics 🙁

    • Phil

      Our leaders have no ethics Sheana. We as the average citizens, most of us do. It’s the backbone to take a stand against this kind of degradation that we lack. Soon perhaps we may find it.

      • M_111

        Wow. I didn’t expect to hear Canadians say what we Americans are saying and thinking about our own “leaders”. We were all kinda hoping those of us with morals and self sufficiency skills could migrate there once the SHTF. Now you tell me you’re in the same boat? 😉

  • Sheana Neitz

    Frac water, tailing ponds, and radiation…. canadas response… cut back and gag science. We have no ethics 🙁

    • Phil

      Our leaders have no ethics Sheana. We as the average citizens, most of us do. It’s the backbone to take a stand against this kind of degradation that we lack. Soon perhaps we may find it.

      • M_111

        Wow. I didn’t expect to hear Canadians say what we Americans are saying and thinking about our own “leaders”. We were all kinda hoping those of us with morals and self sufficiency skills could migrate there once the SHTF. Now you tell me you’re in the same boat? 😉

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