There is no ‘safe’ exposure to radiation, Salt Lake City Tribune, April 9, 2011:
Radiation from Japan is now detectable in the atmosphere, rain water and food chain in North America. Fukushima reactors are still out of control and hold 10 times more nuclear fuel than there was at Chernobyl, thousands of times more than the bomb dropped on Hiroshima. …
Bioaccumulation increases the concentration of many contaminants as one moves up the food chain. Beef is much higher in dioxins than cattle feed and tuna fish have much higher mercury than their marine environment. Radioactive iodine, cesium, and strontium, all beta emitters, become concentrated in the food chain because of bioaccumulation. At the top of the food chain, of course, are humans, including fetuses, and human breast milk.
In 1963, one week after an atmospheric nuclear bomb test in Russia, our scientists observed the magnifying power of bioaccumulation when they detected radioactive iodine in the thyroids of mammals in North America even though they could not detect smaller amounts in the air or on vegetation.
Bioaccumulation is one reason why it is dishonest to equate the danger to humans living 5,000 miles away from Japan with the minute concentrations measured in our air. If we tried, we would now likely be able to measure radioactive iodine, cesium, and strontium bioaccumulating in human embryos in this country. Pregnant women, are you OK with that?
Hermann Mueller, another Nobel Prize winner, is one of many scientists who would not have been OK with that. In a 1964 study, “Radiation and Heredity”, Mueller spelled out the genetic damage of ionizing radiation on humans. He predicted the gradual reduction of the survival of the human species as exposure to radioactivity steadily increased. Indeed, sperm counts, sperm viability and fertility rates worldwide have been dropping for decades. …
Read the report here.
Brian Moench is a physician at LDS Hospital and former instructor of anesthesia at Harvard Medical School.
Published: April 10th, 2011 at 6:58 am ET