written by me:
What about populations in the U.S. exposed to Fukushima fallout? President Obama went on record on March 17 declaring to U.S. citizens that they faced no risk of significant radiation fallout in the U.S. (Landau, http://articles.cnn.com/2011-03-17/us/nuclear.concerns_1_potassium-iodide-radiation-levels-radioactive-material?_s=PM:US).
Despite assurances, radioactive fallout occurred in the US beginning in mid-March. On March 29,“Traces of radiation from the crippled nuclear plant in japan” were reported as being detected in states from California to Massachusetts but “state officials say there is no public-health risk” (3/29 Hotz & Levitz, 2011, p. A12).
Japanese simulations estimated that radioactive dust was lifted high in the atmosphere over Japan on March 14 and 15 by updrafts and reached the U.S. via the jet stream by March 17th or 18th (“Radioactive dust”, 2011).
The assertion of no public health risk echoed in media accounts across the U.S. (Landau, 2011). However, air filter analyses conducted by independent scientists were made public in June by nuclear engineer Arnie Gunderson by independent scientists found high amounts of “hot” particles of cesium, strontium, plutonium, uranium, cobalt-60, revealed that U.S. citizens in breathed in on average 5 hot particles a day in Seattle (citizens in Tokyo inhaled approximately 10 a day and those in Fukushima prefecture over 30 times that amount) (Gunderson CNN and Fairewinds ).
Hot particles lodge in bodily tissues and emit radiation as they decay. In the right circumstances, one hot particle can cause cancer.
Furthermore, the EPA’s own data documented high levels of radioactive fallout in the U.S. The EPA’s data were published online but were not publicized at the time of detection. Consequently, public activist groups criticized the EPA for failing to notify the public of its findings.
For instance, the Seattle nuclear watchdog group complained in July of 2011 that the EPA had failed to warn the public of high levels of Iodine-131 detected in rainwater. The level on March 24, according to EPA data exceeded federal drinking water standards by 130 times (Chittim http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/43720548/ns/us_news-environment/).
“The mantra of no health effects from Fukushima fallout was in fact orchestrated carefully. No health effects are expected among the Japanese people as a result of the events at Fukushima,” read a statement issued by the Nuclear Energy Institute, the nuclear industry trade group, at a June Washington Press conference (cited in Grossman, 2011 June 16).
The mantra was in fact a propaganda campaign, as documents released by The Guardian document. Two days after the earthquake British government authorities contacted nuclear companies including Westinghouse, Areva, EDF Energy, and the Nuclear Industry Association to coordinate a public relations campaign aimed at assuring the public nuclear is safe in order to avoid resistance to a new generation of nuclear plants planned for the UK (Edwards, 2011 ).
In April the UK office for nuclear development met with nuclear companies in London to "to discuss a joint communications and engagement strategy aimed at ensuring we maintain confidence among the British public on the safety of nuclear power stations and nuclear new-build policy in light of recent events at the Fukushima nuclear power plant" (cited in Edwards http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2011/jun/30/british-government-plan-play-down-fukushima).
The collusion between government and industry coupled with the apparent willingness to deceive the public about the scope of the disaster produced public outrage in the U.K. but was little remarked upon in the U.S. press, despite the fact that Americans received far more fallout than persons in the U.K.
Public assurances by the nuclear industry and western governments that fallout from the disaster poses no public health risk were from March onward contested by international scientific and medical authorities. On March 30, Dr. Chris Busby published a report on the internet warning of Fukushima’s health dangers (busbyThe health outcome).
The Australian anti-nuclear activist Dr. Helen Caldicott also warned early on of the dangers of fallout in Japan and across the northern hemisphere in a video that was published on youtube. These warnings were largely ignored by the mainstream press, despite the official documents by the international IEA, the U.S. NRC, and the US EPA stating that there exists no “safe” level of exposure to radionuclides.
to be continued