Radio: Cesium all the way down US West Coast; Pine needles from So. California; Ground samples from Vancouver and Oregon — Not a lot, my biggest concern is bioaccumulation as it works up food chain (AUDIO)

Published: May 4th, 2012 at 2:52 pm ET


Arnie Gundersen Interview
KGO Radio’s Pat Thurston
April 15, 2012

At ~35:00 in

Gundersen: We’re getting studies out of the Cascades, all the way down into Southern California, where we’re seeing cesium in pine needles, cesium in the ground up in Oregon and up in Vancouver. Not a lot. I guess my biggest concern is bioaccumulation, it works it’s way up the food chain.

Published: May 4th, 2012 at 2:52 pm ET


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59 comments to Radio: Cesium all the way down US West Coast; Pine needles from So. California; Ground samples from Vancouver and Oregon — Not a lot, my biggest concern is bioaccumulation as it works up food chain (AUDIO)

  • "Bioaccumulation occurs when an organism absorbs a toxic substance at a rate greater than that at which the substance is lost. Thus, the longer the biological half-life of the substance the greater the risk of chronic poisoning, even if environmental levels of the toxin are not very high." – wiki

  • Gotham

    This is just a foreshock.

    The real climax begins when the next nuclear shoe drops.

    Speculations anyone?

  • el

    Dont tell this to Tillamook Cheese and Organic Valley Milk……

  • bigfatscaryman bigfatscaryman

    All I can say is THANK GOD FOR ARNIE GUNDERSEN, Please keep talking, one day we'll reach that hundredth monkey.

    • dharmasyd dharmasyd

      @bigfat…No cat who speaks of 100th monkey can scare anyone who is aware. Ah yes. I'll say it again:
      >>>The splitting of the atom mandated that humanity must evolve to a consciousness equivalent to, or at least approximating, the ethical consciousness of the gods.<<<

      What is that consciousness? It is required that WE figure that out. No hints given.

      • Howdy, Dharmsyd! At your service with clues ahead …. spontaneous evolution is indeed possible, and necessary in this fuku meets life on a grand scale … time to start communicating with our cells and selves…the effect accumulates… I think

        A rad (as in radical) new sun day to all

        • eatliesndie eatliesndie

          Enlightenment anyone? This is the only way to survive this next evolutionary step. Energeticaly. You have got to vibrate reeeally harmoniously. There's been quite a few survive serious exposure, and one vague thread I see from a the few stories I've encountered is this. LIVE. Live now. Live each moment. Today is your only and last day. Love your loved ones, and love everyone because we are all kin. Now!….not much to ask is it?
          Still, that said, I don't know where the kids fit into this little fantasy. oh well, back to the drawing board……

          • Joe Ebslap Joe Ebslap

            You may be on to something. If we could learn to eat lies there would be plenty of big, plump, fat, juicy, morsels upon which to dine. Joseph Goebbels is the new Euelll Gibbons.

      • StillJill StillJill

        I loved that book,…Ken Keyes wasn't it? The Hundreth Monkey!:-)

      • AGreenRoad AGreenRoad

        American Indian Prophecy, Living As Soul on Earth; via A Green Road Blog

  • sendaimom

    I'm sorry this is the reality. It is not an imminent health problem, but it is a public health issue.

    As I said before, food testing is important. After the Chernobyl nuclear disaster, concerned citizens of Tokyo's Koganei City filed a petition to the City Assembly, which then voted for the city to buy a testing device that detects radioactive cesium (Cs-134 and Cs-137), and the citizens' group has been in charge of food testing since 1990. They have a website, too, although it's in Japanese.

    Are there any US cities that are planning to set up a testing hub like this?

  • StillJill StillJill

    "NOT an imminent health problem"?

    I'm gonna leave THIS ONE to you guys! 🙂

    • Time Is Short Time Is Short

      OK, SJ, let's have at it. "Imminent health problem"?

      Arnie says that the collapse of SFP #4 would release 800 nuclear bombs worth of cesium into the atmosphere.

      Well, that means that the SFP's of 1, 2 & 3 have released the equivalent of 2,400 nuclear bombs worth of cesium into the atmosphere. We've got 3 melted cores, so another 2,400 bombs worth of cesium. We can only speculate on SFP 5, 6 & 7, so cut that in half, and we have 1,200 bombs worth of cesium in the atmosphere.

      For this calculation's sake, I will not include the other 14 NPPs and 14+ SFPs that the Japanese have admitted are in various states of destruction.

      So, using Arnie's educated rough numbers, we already have enough cesium in the atmosphere comparable to the explosion of 6,000+- nuclear bombs. Now remember, a nuclear bomb's radiation is emitted within a few seconds of detonation. The NPPs and SFPs in Japan are still emitting G-d knows what.


      A lot of bullshit about SFP #4. There is not one reason to pay any attention to anyone that says the key to preventing the end of all living things on this planet is the prevention of a collapse at SPF #4. We are WAAAAAY past that. 6,000 times past that, according to Arnie.

      C'mon, Arnie, what's up? Where are the real numbers? Where is the info on uranium and plutonium? How much uranium is released when 6,000 nuclear bombs go off? How far does it spread? How much is still coming from Japan?

      Want more, SJ? Just ask!

      • demo demo

        TIS, while it IS an imminent health prob, likely resulting in 1 to 8 million cancers even if unit 4 doesn't go, it's not as bad as your extrapolation from Arne's #'s. It's because of unit 4's fuel rods that a unit 4 collapse would release so much more cesium than the 1,2,3 melt-downs.

      • NoNukes NoNukes

        Impressive, Time Is Short! 6,000 bombs, and we know that it is more, plus that their own children are breathing it in.

  • I believe it is indeed an imminent health problem.

    Please read this

    Paul Langley examines a US military study on the human absorption of radionuclides

    Relevant quote from the study:
    "The fission products can produce injury either as an external source of radiation or, if they gain entry into the body, by acting as an internal radioactive poison, quite analogous to radium poisoning. This latter consideration is a major concern, since the amounts required within the body to produce injurious effects are minute compared to the quantities necessary to induce damage by external beta and gamma irradiation."

    Plants uptake cesium as if it were potassium. So do human bodies.
    Zhu, Y-G, & Smolders, E. (200). Plant Uptake of Radiocaesium: A Review of Mechanisms, Regulation and Application. Journal of Experimental Botany, 51(351), 1635-1645

    In Nuclear Controversies by Vladimir Tchertkoff (2003), Professor Yury Bandazhevsky (former director of the Medical Institute in Gomel), states that "Over 50 Bq/kg of body weight lead to irreversible lesions in vital organs"

    • Time Is Short Time Is Short

      Great research, Majia.

      Favor. Can you find out what happens when people do come down with radiation poisoning? What are the treatment options? What are the survival rates? What organs need to come out first? Do we die of radiation cell destruction before our brains are turned to mush?

      The newbies need to know what's going on. The rest of us want to know what's coming. Arnie won't tell us. Well, no one will, that knows. The entire worldwide military planning machine knows exactly what's coming, where, how many, and both the proper response, and the response we're going to get. Two entirely different things.

      Much obliged.

      • enoughalready45 enoughalready45

        "Eat like you already have cancer." "Lots of fruits and vegetables." "Try to get nutrition from your food [not only supplements]." "Strengthen your immune system [now, don't wait]."

        This I think was great advice offered on Nuked Radio by the host and guest, who is battling Leukemia.
        (This part of discussion is at the end of the show.)

  • I will try.

    Finding out the effects is going to be challenging because people typically do not know that they are experiencing the effects of radiation when the exposure is sub-acute. So the literature on sub-acute effects for humans is not very good (many reasons why).

    Here is the deal in a nutshell.

    1. If you are exposed to levels high enough to cause your symptoms to be immediate and overt (e.g.,extreme nausea), then chances are you will be diagnosed by a doctor and then die unless you get some special treatment.

    2. Then there is exposure that causes symptoms within a short period but they are more subtle.

    To figure out what these symptoms might be I googled the "side effects" of radiation treatment for cancer.

    Stomach problems, hair loss, and problems with the mouth are common symptoms. Worsen

    If the exposure is not too great and the person is otherwise healthy, they are probably going to recover but may or may not suffer problems including cancer some years later.


    • cont


      Unlike cancer patients, we will be, or are now currently, consuming radiation in our food, our water, and in our air.

      The exposure is not controlled, as is the case of cancer patients.

      Also, the level of exposure is very much increasing in a manner not consistent with any other known radiological event on planet earth (best analog might be atmospheric testing but major differences in that situation compared to our current one)

      What does that mean?

      I don't know but our bodies are going to be taxed ceaselessly attempting to repair all the DNA and cellular damage.

      Existing medical conditions are going to be exacerbated.

      Immune systems are going to go haywire.

      I'll look but I don't know if I can find data 1) on how much exposure of 2) what radionuclides cause this progression.

      • Time Is Short Time Is Short

        Thanks, Majia. Very good info right there.

        I think we all know we're in uncharted territory here, with exposure levels that dwarf anything Chernobyl could teach us. The military planners know what's coming, but they'll never tell us. All those Japanese and German experiments during the war, Plum Island, the South Africans, the Russians, lots of info that'll never see the light of day.

        Anything you can find is appreciated, with people you'll never meet, but whose prayers will bring you Light.

  • I'm sure the military planners know a lot they will never say. Pure conjecture on my part but I am sure given what we know of these peoples past actions that controlled clandestine human guinea pig radiation experimentation has been performed in third world countries on behalf of rich democratic and communist powers. The way China operates they probably have in country experiments taking place today with the endless supply of dissidents that seem to disappear. Again just conjecture on my part. Radiation sickness per say, usually refers to a serious dose a NPP worker or A-bomb victim gets with immediate consequences from exposure. What we are talking about here is tiny amounts that won't affect for some time. Like cigarrette smoking. One smoke won't kill you or make you sick but over time some people will die. Accumulative doses such that both people get exposed to the minute quantity of cesium Arnie is talking about but one person has had a number of cat scans or lives in a basement with radon pollution or lives close to a NPP. Like smoking some will die but you do see elderly people smoking.
    But my question is OK you tested for cesium but does that result infer a quantity of other isotopes present? My understanding is that you must test for one substance at a time. So to say we found cesium doesn't at all mean thats all we found but thats what we looked for.

  • Accumulative doses such that both people get exposed to the minute quantity of cesium Arnie is talking about but one person has had a number of cat scans or lives in a basement with radon pollution or lives close to a NPP. Meaning the person with extra x rays or etc. may develop cancer as the cesium dose wasn't fatal but the combination was.

    Even though detected levels are low so too are actual samples relative to the large expanse of land we are talking about. I mean the whole west coast wasn'tmapped out for cesium just samples here and there. Very little of radiation dispersal patterns is known or shared. I understand dispersal doesn't follow an even pattern like some materials but is patchy. Like you find a hotspot in my backyard but not yours. Therefore there is, possibly,some pine needle or patch of ground somewhere between here (Vancouver) and the Baja peninsula that might very well have higher levels then what was found.

    Finally my question is upon finding Cesium, can we assume that that isotope is the predominent one therefore the values shown are somewhat similar to total radiation accumulation or should we assume the radio-active plume contained a variety of isotopes and we should multiply the value by a small or large factor?

    • Jebus Jebus

      I could be wrong, but I think that, WE GOT NUKED!…. 🙁

      Plutonium will last for a long, long, long time…

      There are four kinds of isotopes that are likeliest to be emitted by the crippled Fukushima Daiichi plant, as well as the other three that have been taken offline: iodine-131, cesium-137, strontium-90 and plutonium-239. Iodine-131 is, in many ways, the most dangerous of the four, because it can lead to cancer — specifically thyroid cancer — in people exposed to it in the shortest time. Epidemiologists estimate that there were 6,000 to 7,000 cases of thyroid cancer that never would have occurred as a result of the 1986 Chernobyl explosion in Russia. Most of the victims were people who were children at the time of their exposure and developed the disease later….

      ….More troubling, cesium and strontium linger not just in the body, but in the environment. Strontium has a half-life of 29 years; cesium’s is 30. A radioactive isotope is generally considered dangerous for 10 to 20 times its half life, which in these cases tops out at about 600 years.

      • Jebus Jebus

        Most worrisome of all is plutonium-239 — for a number of reasons. First of all, the vast majority of a fuel rod is made of plutonium, which means there’s just more of it in play. What’s more, says Helfand, “It’s extraordinarily toxic.” Plutonium exposure usually comes from inhalation rather than ingestion, so it’s mostly associated with lung cancer. What’s more, plutonium’s half life is 24,000 years, which means anything released in Fukushima today could be around at dangerous levels for up to half a millon years.

        • Jebus Jebus

          When spent fuel rods come out of a reactor, after a full cycle, after starting at 6 percent, (regular fuel) to 16 percent, (MOX fuel), what percentage of fission created plutonium, do you suppose they are enriched to?

          All the same amount?

  • sendaimom

    I see some reactions to my remark "it is not an imminent health problem." Sorry it was not my point. I wanted to say It is not an immediate health problem but it is an imminent public health issue.

    I would greatly appreciate responses to my question I made in the last sentence of my earlier comment. I would be encouraged if any of you have the same idea.

  • Sendaimom

    I know of no US cities planning on setting up testing hubs.

    In the US radiation testing is usually done by the federal government, the EPA(or outsourced by them).

    Some states have their own testing.

    However, I spoke to local water authorities and the EPA does all the testing for radiation in their water.

    My state is in direct cahoots with our nuclear power plant so they would never do independent testing of food that might implicate nuclear engery.

    The public universities could do it but they are dependent on state funding so chances are that they would not dare.

    Besides, most all the academics i've talked to (quite a few) are oblivious.

    I think the only option would be for citizens to do their own testing but where? One would need special equipment to test for radiation in water and food.

    Geiger counters will not work unless food/water is very, very contaminated.

    So, we in the US are held hostage by a broken and corrupt regulatory system and a beholden public university system.

    My opinion.

    • vital1 vital1


      There is info in the latest free Geiger Counter Use Guide on radiation food testing equipment (Link below). A DIY unit I am researching will cost around $1900. The the DIY lead testing chamber would be an extra cost. If it works as I hope it will, I will post the detailed info at enenews. The other more expensive units would need a group by.

      I would like to point out I have no financial interest in any of this equipment. I am simply doing the research because I think the community will need this equipment.

      If you are thinking of purchasing a Geiger counter, or

      have just purchased one, here is a free resource to help you.

      This Basic Guide will provide you with information on how to protect your Geiger Counter from contamination, plus how get the best out of it.

      The Free Geiger Counter Use Guide has just been given another update with lots more useful info. Download it from here. If you have any suggestions or additions to improve the guide, please let me know. It is provided free as a resource for this community.

  • sendaimom

    Thanks majia

    I believe citizens took initiative in setting up a testing place Tokyo's Koganei City's case in 1990.
    I wonder what I can do to make similar things happen here? Could anybody write a petition? Is anybody writing one?

    • What-About-The-Kids

      Sendaimom and all: I have an idea. Remember the PBS show that featured people testing food in Japan for radiation? The show featured David Sydney Moore, who set up a service at his home testing food for radiation.

      He and his wife are moving their family to the United States soon, I believe. You could email him to ask him questions about setting up a citizen-run radiation testing network here in the U.S. Who knows? He may even wish to be a part of it?

      His website is:

      His (Tokyo Kids Radiation) Facebook page:

      What do you think? 🙂

      Let us know if you do contact him and get a response! Good luck!

      • vital1 vital1


        The Unit he is using is the same as I have sourced. I am just waiting for the scintillator to turn up. Once it has I will set it up and test it. I will then post details on how to get it all working.

        • Spectrometising

          Awesome Vital1.

          Also do not forget to post your results here (link below.)….Most who are getting into using this equipment, myself included, can be found here including David Sydney Moore.

          A good place to ask questions and learn more.

          Also here (Further links below.) because it represents the USA version and is long established and not baked in the oven a few hours ago. This group is very reliable and has been around for a long time.

          No need to go around inventing new groups when there are already well established and very well moderated ones already present.

          • Spectrometising

            I say this with the view that any radiation monitoring network must have an area within the site which specifically deals with equipment methodology and some good technical backup to ensure best practice, accuracy and interpretation. Or at least links to these sites.

            I believe Vital1 has already linked on his own site which is great. From memory so i am definitely all for that. The more links the better.

  • Majia, anyone or group of people who have an extra 10 or more thousand dollars could buy the equipment and figure the procedure out. We in the US and Canada are not held hostage. They just want us to think that. We are still free and that might be what worries the privileged minority the most.

    I'd like to get back to what Jebus was talking about as he sort of answered my concern. My question to Jebus or anyone else is to what degree do the other isotopes come into play? If you measure say 50 becquerels per kilogram of cesium 137 does that mean you could surmise or at least guestimate 10 becquerels of strontium? More? Less? And if you detect 50 becquerels per kilo of cesium 137 how many other isotopes could you anticipate finding? 10? 20? And if you added up all the values of all the isotopes that could or should be there if you detected 50 becquerels of cesium 137 would it be reasonable to surmise that total radiation would be close to 50 becquerels or a bit higher or a lot higher?

    • Good point Mark. But one would have to have the training to know how to operate the specialized equipment.

      We really need to get more people with expertise in this area involved but I don't know how.

      As for the ratios, I'm not sure that can be deduced because I think it depends upon the source.

      Joy probably knows the answer to this question.

      • Majia, I honestly have no idea about operating a scintillator but I'm sure a couple of smart people such as you and me could figure it out. Heres a link for testing food with a Geiger counter although the level of radiation that will cause damage is undetectable with even expensive Geiger counters. Food for thought

        A scintillator crystal is more sensitive then a geiger mueller tube installed in most personal radiation detector. Seems like you need a lead shield and the food must be dried or chopped up or prepared some way but I don't think its rocket science just you need a $10,000 scintillator.

        • What-About-The-Kids

          Mark, see my comment above to SendaiMom's question regarding creating a citizen's radiation testing network. May be helpful to you and help you get some questions answered. 🙂 Cheers!

          • Thanks, that was a cool site pictures and description of the equipment he bought. Seems like although expensive not unreachable like a spaceship or submarine. Looks very doable for middle class type or group of low income types.

            We are still free and its time we all acted free. The trance of booze fast food illegal but still available drugs and junk media has most people in a stupor. Democracy requires eternal vigilance. This wonderful internet connects like minded people as never before. Enenews is a prime example. Hats off to the web master and all participants

    • AGreenRoad AGreenRoad

      Better to not eat any food testing more than about 10 to 20 Bq per KG, especially kids or infants.. The less/lower, the better.

      50 Bq per kg or higher radiation level in food means that is what will end up in body, and that is a lethal level in kids, where permanent lesions appear in heart, organs, etc.

      A pregnant woman should not be getting ANY radiation, as the fetus is MOST sensitive, even to one alcohol drink, small amount of radiation, etc.

      However, even a microgram of plutonium can kill you, or cause a birth defect. This is below measurement levels of machines.

      Picture a dust mote floating in the room. Inhale a plutonium dust mote, and if it sticks you are dead, or have cancer.. This is the hot particle theory.

      There is NO SAFE DOSE of radiation, bottom line.

      That is why we have to work to evolve beyond nuclear power, radiation sources, bombs, etc.

  • I haven't been able to listen to the radio show yet as I'm in a coffee shop and forgot the headphones so I appologise if this concern was addressed in show

  • ML

    At the end of this radio podcast is a call out to go to and sign the petition to have the US form an international coalition to deal with Fukushima. It needs a lot more signatures before it will get any attention. I have signed it and emailed my contacts to sign it.
    Also, I have written letters to our major grocery stores asking them to test the fish and seaweed, etc that they are selling to be sure it is safe for children and pregnant women to consume.
    Please sign the petition at

  • 6feetunder 6feetunder

    Hello I am new to this Blog and this is my first post. Thanks to you all for the willingness to look at this most disconcerting info. I am looking at some of the data about FUKU and also at Santa Susana in Simi Valley. As you may know, there was a major nuke meltdown incident in 1959 in Simi Valley CA. The Gov covered it up. The Population of Santa Susana CA has been a consistent 1k+ for the time period since this incident.
    That makes me suspicious of the claims that FUKU is an ELE. I am hoping to find the truth about what to expect from FUKU without a bunch of fear mongering. Could some of the elevated readings on the west coast of US be from sources other than FUKU?

  • demo demo

    Welcome, 6'u. Some of the readings on the US west coast are indeed from other sources. They aren't so elevated that giving up is warranted. There are dietary/other ways to lessen risk. There'll be more cancers etc, but not 25% of the population, unless unit 4 goes. That's what we have to prioritize solving. Pls help increase public pressure to get unit 4 stabilized by sending something like this to everyone you know:

    Here's a draft outreach message re what could be the most urgent issue we're facing. It's a start. We need to figure out how to pierce people's psychic numbing and motivate/organize people to take to the streets en masse asap. If the situation is desperate, the peeps don't want to know, so the question is how to educate as to the urgency and yet maintain enough hope that people will act?

    Friends and colleagues, The situation at Fukushima, and at other nuclear plants, is increasingly dire and risks harming us all:

    Please sign/fwd this petition by Tues:
    Even tho you have to remember or create a password 1st, it's one of the petitions that could have the most impact if we can get 1000's of signatures by Tues. If not, I hope the authors'll try again w/ a similar new petition now that public awareness is growing.
    tel. 202-456-1111 fax: 202-456-2461

    • jump-ball jump-ball

      TY Demo. Our corrupt leaders continuing to ignore public pleas about Fuku (as well as economic reality) advances the time when the public has no other remedy than torches and pitchforks.

      The GE nuclear designer's apocalyptic nightmare must be a tornado ripping up an elevated SFP and spreading the contamination countrywide: tonight's Japanese tornado 40 miles NE of Tokyo is 1/3 of the way to Fuku, with a bad moon on the rise:

  • There is something big that you can do about this! The best thing that I have found, and am using, for personal protection from radioactive particle contamination is Biosuperfood bio-algae concentrates, which saved people at Chernobyl from sickness and death. Please see for information and links. Spread the word to help everyone stay well!