Traces of iodine-131 detected in Europe, Trend, November 11, 2011:
“Low levels of a radioactive isotope have been detected in several European countries in the past days, but the source of the emission was unknown, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) said Friday, DPA reported.” [...]
‘”But it’s a concern because there is a source somewhere,” an offical close to the IAEA said, adding that atmospheric measurements were made in countries including Austria, the Czech Republic and Hungary.” [...]
From the International Atomic Energy Agency’s brief statement on the detection:
- “The IAEA has learned about similar measurements in other locations across Europe”
- “The IAEA believes the current trace levels of iodine-131 that have been measured do not pose a public health risk and are not caused by the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear accident in Japan”
- “The IAEA is working with its counterparts to determine the cause and origin of the iodine-131.”
The iodine-131 finding comes around 10 days after the announcement of xenon at Fukushima, which was suspected to be caused by a criticality.
How long did it take for radioactive particles from Japan to reach Europe back in March?
“The substances were blown eastward by a jet stream traveling at a speed of some 3,000 kilometres a day, arriving on the US West Coast on March 18, in Iceland on March 20, and many other European countries on March 22, the researchers said.” -DPA
Because radioactive releases after the March 11 quake occurred almost immediately, the radioactive isotopes from Japan took about 10-11 days to reach Europe.
UPDATE via BBC at 9:25am ET (h/t Bobby1):
“The Czech nuclear security authority said it had been detecting radioactive iodine-131 at a number of monitoring stations since late October and had informed the IAEA to see if it could identify the source, Reuters reports.”
“Czech nuclear safety chief Dana Drabova said the iodine could have leaked during production of radiopharmaceuticals.”
“It was certainly not from a nuclear power plant, she said, adding that they were almost certain that the source was abroad.”
Published: November 11th, 2011 at 8:50 am ET