Monday, April 2, 2018

Tidal Life and Traces of Radionuclides in Ocean Water




 
The Japanese media recently reported on a study that confirms that radionuclides from the wrecked Fukushima daiichi plant continue to flow into the sea, although "no adverse effects" are posited for the fishing industry or environment more generally:
Study says Fukushima radioactive water continues to flow into sea (Mar. 29 2018). Japan Today https://japantoday.com/category/national/study-says-fukushima-radioactive-water-continues-to-flow-into-sea
Radioactive water continues to flow into the ocean from the Fukushima plant at around 2 billion becquerels a day, more than seven years after the nuclear crisis, a study by a Japanese professor said Wednesday.

The amount of leakage of radioactive cesium 137 has decreased from some 30 billion becquerels in 2013, Michio Aoyama, a professor at the Institute of Environmental Radioactivity at Fukushima University, said in his study presented to an academic meeting in Osaka Prefecture.

The study said the concentration of radiation, 0.02 becquerel in a liter of seawater taken at a coastal town in Fukushima Prefecture some 8 kilometers south of the crippled Fukushima Daiichi complex, is a level that does not affect the fisheries industry.
Another news article provides the same basic information:
Seven years on, radioactive water at Fukushima plant still flowing into ocean, study finds (2018, May 29). Japan Times. Available, https://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2018/03/29/national/seven-years-radioactive-water-fukushima-plant-still-flowing-ocean-study-finds/#.WsFQbn8h1Zo
The amount of leaking cesium 137 has decreased from some 30 billion becquerels in 2013, Michio Aoyama, a professor at the Institute of Environmental Radioactivity at Fukushima University, said in his study, which was presented Wednesday at an academic conference in Osaka.... “It can be assumed that there is a path from the complex to the ocean” through which contaminated water flows, Aoyama said.... The study said the concentration of radiation — 0.02 becquerel per liter of seawater found in samples collected near a coastal town 8 km south of the No. 1 plant — is at a level that does not affect the local fishing industry.
These trace amounts cesium-137 seem insignificant until you examine how they and other radionuclides bio-accumulate and bio-magnify in food chains.

For example, a study described below finds that plutonium from atmospheric testing concentrates in lagoon water:

Radioactivity lingers from 1946-1958 nuclear bomb tests (October 31, 2017 ), https://phys.org/news/2017-10-radioactivity-lingers-nuclear.html

… The levels of plutonium are 100 or more times higher in lagoon waters compared to the surrounding Pacific Ocean and about two times higher for a radioactive form of cesium. Despite these enrichments, they do not exceed U.S. and international water quality standards set to protect human health, the scientists reported Oct. 30, 2017, in the journal Science of the Total Environment.

….Using isotopes of plutonium that act like a fingerprint to pinpoint sources, the WHOI scientists found that the seafloor sediments around Runit Island seem to be contributing about half of the plutonium to the lagoon

… The WHOI research team also compared the radioactive contamination at the Marshall Islands to the contamination found today near Fukushima in Japan in the aftermath of the Dai-ichi Nuclear Power Plant disaster. "In contrast to Fukushima, where cesium is the most abundant radionuclide of concern, in these atolls, the focus should be on plutonium, given its significantly high levels," said WHOI radiochemist Ken Buesseler.
Whereas plutonium is the greatest stated concern in the Marshall Islands, radiocesium is the greatest stated concern in Fukushima beach sands, which were reported as especially contaminated since radioactive elements are concentrated in coastal shores:
Scientists find new source of radioactivity from Fukushima disaster (October 2, 2017 ). PhysOrg, https://phys.org/news/2017-10-scientists-source-radioactivity-fukushima-disaster.html#nRlv

Scientists have found a previously unsuspected place where radioactive material from the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant disaster has accumulated—in sands and brackish groundwater beneath beaches up to 60 miles away. The sands took up and retained radioactive cesium originating from the disaster in 2011 and have been slowly releasing it back to the ocean.

"No one is either exposed to, or drinks, these waters, and thus public health is not of primary concern here," the scientists said in a study published October 2 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. But "this new and unanticipated pathway for the storage and release of radionuclides to the ocean should be taken into account in the management of coastal areas where nuclear power plants are situated."

How much bio-magnification occurs as radioactive elements are concentrated in tidal life, beginning with phytoplankton and other microscopic life before being concentrated in crabs, fish, and sea mammals?

Unfortunately, most accounts of trace contaminants in ocean waters fail to acknowledge that the genotoxins we release, produce, and circulate are distributed unequally as they are concentrated in the folds of life, with long term and intergenerational risks.

See my related posts beginning with my recent discussion of detection of trace levels of radioisotopes of cesium-134 and 137 in Canada here: http://majiasblog.blogspot.com/2018/03/no-adverse-effects.html

For background on effects I also recommend Paul Langley's post here:
Nuclear Dilution vs the Movement of Radionuclides through the Biosphere and Humans. https://nuclearhistory.wordpress.com/2013/10/18/nuclear-dilution-vs-the-movement-of-radionuclides-through-the-biosphere-and-humans/


RELATED POSTS
 

Majia's Blog: Unprecedented Contamination of the Ocean
majiasblog.blogspot.com/2013/05/unprecedented-contamination-of-ocean.html
May 9, 2013 - 2013, Tepco has admitted 3 of 7 reservoirs are leaking the highly contaminated water into the environment at least. From Tepco's report of 4/26/2013, .... Apr 12, 2013 – Majia here: Radioactive water from Fukushima has contaminated the ocean in an ongoing fashion for the last two years. In an interview in .
 

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last updated 4/5/2018

3 comments:

  1. The fact that they are finding mostly cesium on beaches . The fact that that there are readings of 1000s of bq of rcesium, in auto air filters and other air filters in many parts of japan, very much proves that there was a fuel pool calamity at fukup. Dun thinks so. Arnie thinks so. The other suckasses will not say

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  2. I mean others that are suckasses arnie and dun are not the cowards

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  3. This comment has been removed by the author.

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