Nuclear Insider: Surprise at how much cesium is moving through environment — Crops with no direct contact to Fukushima fallout still highly contaminated (VIDEO)

Published: March 14th, 2012 at 6:29 pm ET


Title: Fukushima’s Food Fallout: Testing Groceries for Radiation in Japan
Source: PBS
Date: March 13, 2012

MILES O’BRIEN: […] So how long will people in Japan be dealing with this problem? Many farmers here were dismayed to learn crops that did not have any direct contact to the Fukushima fallout were still too tainted to be brought to market.

KATHRYN HIGLEY, Oregon State University: They were a little bit surprised at how much of the cesium translocated from the old leaves into the new growth, particularly in the tea leaves.

MILES O’BRIEN: Radio ecologist Kathy Higley is reading Fukushima tea leaves at Oregon State University. She studies how radionuclides move through the environment.

KATHRYN HIGLEY: When the initial releases occurred, the radionuclide contamination fell to the ground and it contaminated the old, mature plants, the old, mature leaves, if you will. And later on, as the weather warmed up and you started getting new growth, what they found in the tea leaves was that the new growth was also contaminated.

MILES O’BRIEN: Whatever the mechanisms, Toshiyuki Nishiyama is not waiting for the soil to be safe enough for rice. He and some of the others who used to farm here are thinking of building greenhouses to grow vegetables hydroponically.

Wall Street Journal
: “From a radiological perspective, we expect the impact to be really, really minor,” said Kathryn Higley, a professor of nuclear engineering at Oregon State University. She was part of the group that spoke Thursday in Washington D.C.

Bio: Higley […] has held both Reactor Operator and Senior Reactor Operator’s licenses, and is a former Reactor Supervisor for the Reed College TRIGA reactor. She has held research positions at three research reactors including Reed College, Washington State University (Pullman), and Oregon State University. She has fourteen years with Battelle, Pacific Northwest Laboratories as an environmental health physicist at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation and three years experience in environmental radiation monitoring at the Trojan Nuclear Power Plant in Oregon. She is a consultant to the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Air, Water and Radiation Protection.

Published: March 14th, 2012 at 6:29 pm ET


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46 comments to Nuclear Insider: Surprise at how much cesium is moving through environment — Crops with no direct contact to Fukushima fallout still highly contaminated (VIDEO)

  • kintaman kintaman

    I have been saying from the beginning that there are too many unknowns to be able to really trust what any "experts" are saying even if they are being truthful. Since 3.11 the world has entered a real world science experiment where the outcome is unknowable.

    My rationale is simply the further away you can get from the source the better. Avoid seafood period. Avoid anything "Made in Japan"…sorry Japan but fuck your economy, you swallowed the nuclear pill now deal with it (I say this as a Japanese blooded person who used to have great pride in Japan but now only great sorrow and shame).

    Other countries better take heed of this and make the correct moves if they do no want to end up in the same boat. The aging nuclear plants can only last so long….metal and concrete fatigue.

    • Anthony Anthony

      I understand your sorrow kintaman but I wish I could take your shame away.

      Japan should not be crippled with the heaviness of shame at this time. Or ever really, accidents happen.

      I'm not being a hypocrite and I really mean that Japan needs to be strong now, make a plan and execute it.

      You need to distance yourself from the toxins at least until there is a measurable decrease in volume.

      All these things will call on the many strengths the Japanese people possess as a collective. Shame is not a part of the recipe I recommend.

      Redemption exists in holding those AMONG YOU WHO SHOULD FEEL SHAME FOR THEIR LIES TO YOU AND YOUR FELLOW CITIZENS and I promise you kintaman, we will stand by you.

      You never saw 311 coming as a customer of the utility who now poisons you. TEPCO and the Japan Government had a duty to protect you from the dangers their machinery and policies enabled.

      They also double crossed you when they fucken lied about the heath of the plants and extended the contracts and licenses minutes before the piece of shit fell into a thousand pieces.

      I hope I have replaced your sense of shame with the power of well deserved and directed anger.

      Fuck TEPCO.


      Its not you.

      A friend from across the way.

      • Anger is not a virtue. Neither is shame. Responsibility is a virtue. Truthfulness is a virtue. Helpfulness is a virtue. The Japanese people need to accept responsibility for what has happened. They loved money more than morality. They need to tell the truth … ALL THE TIME! They need to accept responsibility for putting those who lied about radiation releases into prison. It's a crime against all humanity.

        Helpfulness is a virtue and Japan can be helpful by dedicating itself to lead humanity into a NUCLEAR FREE WORLD. They are the #1 industrial power in the world. They can create the alternative technology we need. They can make it possible to end the nuclear nightmare. It is their duty to do so.

    • arclight arclight

      Young Mothers' Reasons for Not Leaving Fukushima: "Scared of Leaving, Scared of Remaining"

      Uploaded by tokyobrowntabby on 14 Mar 2012

      Please click on "cc" button at the bottom right of the YouTube window if you don't see the English subtitles.

      This video clip is part of a TV program called "Seishun Riaru" by E-Tele, aired on an unidentified date in 2011 (probably in late autumn or early winter).

      The original video:

      Translation and captioning by tokyobrowntabby.

      • arclight arclight

        the child touching the ivy put a tear in my eye! he was really nervous about it!

        still emotional! what a tradegy on so many levels.. the true face of "nuclear fear" justified fear of radiation and so young!



      @kintaman: "…sorry Japan…you swallowed the nuclear pill now deal with it…" is bit off target. The pill was forced down their throats. Look into the "Atoms for Peace" program, that was imposed on post-war Japan…

      • kintaman kintaman

        Aftershock, you are correct but they still went ahead and followed what the US forced them to do. It is not the people of Japan but those who are in power at the top of Japan who must be held accountable for they have betrayed their nation.

  • So sorry Mr. Nishiyama, Yjeu ;ied and you and everyone else must pay the price for their greed and stupidity !

  • StillJill StillJill

    Yes Kintaman,…you alone can say many things here. Your words hold all the knowledge of Japan,….that makes them all the more startling!

    Add to the aging metal and concrete,…all the 'funk pipes'. What are they anyway, PVC for goodness sake?

    They will be shut down!

  • edit !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • StillJill StillJill


  • obewanspeaks obewanspeaks

    This radiation contamination is now everywhere inside our environment and it has been here for the past 60 years and the radiation levels are constantly increasing from Nuclear Plant operations and fallout from such disasters.

    No one speaks of the true consequences to our health, even in this article, that avoids the real results and pending costs and suffering for millions of people worldwide that are constantly exposed to such radiation contamination.

    Heart disease is one reflection and consequence of such past and current Nuclear Contamination folly.

  • StillJill StillJill

    Yes,…the early deaths I am seeing here are far more heart attacks than even cancer! I think you are onto something obewanspeaks!

    This is also what Dr. Busby is so pissed about! Holes in kid's hearts. I wonder what the 'brainiacs' are going to say caused THAT?

    • It's going to get worse. It's far from over. The Japanese people need to take responsibility for their government. If they don't then everyone in the world needs to boycott all Japanese corporations until they do.

      There are no "passes" on global ecocide. You have to "clean up your mess" and stop dumping you nuclear junk. It's one planet. We have one destiny. It's all US.

      If you buy Japanese products you are supporting them in ecocide. Stop supporting them!

      We all need to help them. But they must be willing to do the right things. The people in Government and TEPCO who lied need to be put into prison. END nuclear power. Go GREEN!

      • Anthony Anthony

        So much in agreement with your thinking. The people need to problem solve this as a people.

        Though the Government should be for its people, clearly the Government cannot be counted on so that means

        Your action needs to be and IS independent of Government involvement.

        If they are okay with killing you with their poisons then you know the deal.

        There are probably Government Officials who are also in the sweep.

        Take names. Verify involvement.

        Publish the names.

        It will be a start and a framework to organize much action.

      • kintaman kintaman

        I fully agree and I support a ban of ALL things made in Japan. Supporting the economy of Japan is supporting their government and TEPCO. Starve the economy and the people will be forced to take action although it is FAR too late for anything. I think we are all in big trouble (Japan and beyond).

  • Noah

    The permanent nature of Cesium-134 & C-137 contamination

    The enduring presence of C-134 & C-137 in soil and vegetation continues to astound me. (For-example: the Ukraine and Bikini Atoll) The re-contamination of new growth on tea bushes confirms the principle of internal bio-accumulation of Cesium within the living organism and enduring persistence within the soil.

    This is helpful in confirming my theory, that once contaminated the living Eco-system tenaciously holds on to the potassium mimic Cesium, because it bio chemically assumes it to be just that, potassium. Potassium which is essential to life.

    The Devilish creation of radioactive Cesium is a monstrous creation. It uses the love (affinity) that living things have for potassium and uses that love to kill it.

    It sets living things against itself. Life's biological imperative to stay alive, by acquiring life sustaining potassium, drives it to accumulate as much radioactive cesium as it can gather!

    Consider the sunflower plant, seaweeds and the mushrooms. These are potassium nutrient sponges, hence gather radioactive cesium in huge quantities.

    In the human body, every living cell contains potassium receptor sites to carry on life processes, making us very vulnerable to Cesium bio-accumulation, especially in the heart tissues of the very young.

    The creators of C-134 & C-137 have unleashed a horrible monster, that cannot be recalled. The monster rampages through the countryside, careening, injuring and killing those it encounters.

  • obewanspeaks obewanspeaks

    This will blow your mind as we all our here wonder where this stuff called C-137 came from.

    and inside the link..
    "All caesium-137 existing today is unique in that it is totally anthropogenic (man-made). Unlike most other radioisotopes, caesium-137 is not produced from its non-radioactive isotope but as a byproduct of nuclear fission,[7] meaning that until now, it has not occurred on Earth for billions of years. By observing the characteristic gamma rays emitted by this isotope, it is possible to determine whether the contents of a given sealed container were made before or after the advent of atomic bomb explosions. This procedure has been used by researchers to check the authenticity of certain rare wines, most notably the purported "Jefferson bottles". [8]"

    Gee I wonder what the earth was like a billion years ago?

    Our scientific community must surely be brain dead.

    • hbjon hbjon

      Thanks Obe, I put that in my pipe and smoked it. It has some sweet overtones of citrus at first, followed by a bold earthy chocolatey aftertaste. I tell ya, ya really gotta clear your palate after that one. I got the munchies already. Going out for some flowers of wine and butters of Arsenic.

      • AGreenRoad AGreenRoad


        • dharmasyd dharmasyd

          AGreenRoad…Sorry I didn't get back to you with more thoughts on the 3/22 event. I still haven't had a chance to really study it; as I said though, a couple of the main indicators I use are in play the main. I refer here to Mars at station (from R/ turning direct, although still a tad wide. The Lunar position, and some other items I still would need to study more closely.

          My excuse for not doing more on this. The management of my HUD based senior housing with 150 units is trying to pull another illegal trick on us. We've had to go to attorneys and work on it before all these seniors are dislocated.

          Also, I don't really want to get too involved with all the EQ hysteria around this date on this site by folks who don't know much more than to print out USGS EQ charts. That conversation would be way too taxing for me now.

  • obewanspeaks obewanspeaks

    oops..This will blow your mind as we all "out" here…

    Are we terraforming our own planet by design?

  • Anthony Anthony

    Oh my God…. *surprised*?


    Does he know anything about radiation?

    If they are putting on airs or not this *my goodness* bullshit is insult to injury.

    Id like to think Nuclear Professional put the safety and health of the people and environments first-most in everything they do.

    Not knowing basic radiation issues, that even Common Joes here know, is unacceptable.

    To me its like allowing someone to fly a 747 with a learners permit.

    • many moons

      Anthony I thought the same thing then I said wait a minute…maybe they are surprised and by many things!…after all these are the same brilliant minds that placed a bunch of nuclear reactors in a place that for centuries have reported a hell of a lot of earth quakes and that giant wave symbol everywhere to remind you what happens after the earth quake..

      • Anthony Anthony

        There's gonna always be an element of Dumb and Dumber with the tale of Fukushima.

        Somebody needs to demand some original documents to see who signed what and when.

        Who received the many advisement of fault lines, tsunami risks etc etc etc etc etc

        Bring ALL THAT dark to the light.

        I'm honing in on the company now.

        • HoTaters HoTaters

          Well, Bill Magwood from the NRC (Chairman Jackzo's chief opponent there) was one of the designers of the Fukushima, so he's a good one for the dumb and dumber saga.

          • HoTaters HoTaters

            … the Fukushima plant.

          • Anthony Anthony

            Now that might be a productive and proactive endeavor for antinuclear groups…. a wall of shame if you will where we specifically identify key players in a nuclear disaster. The people who signed the contracts or demonstrably are shown to be absolutely complicit in the series of deliberate missteps which lead only to the likely outcome.

            The Japanese can be a role model for how to hold industry criminals accountable for their crimes.

            • HoTaters HoTaters

              Hmmn …. I hadn't reconsidered Bill Magwood's role in the recent revelations from NRC reports recently released under FOIA requests. Two published here in the past week. Recalling Magwood's role, NO WONDER they didn't want the press to get ahold of the results of radiation testing, and to consider the "possible consequences" as the NRC so nicely put it.

  • HoTaters HoTaters

    Recent recently. Dept. of Redundancy Dept. (sorry).

  • StillJill StillJill

    @HoTaters–"Recent recently. Dept. of Redundancy Dept. (sorry)."

    LMAO—-LIke 'killed him dead', huh? 🙂

  • PhilipUpNorth philipupnorth

    Perhaps Kathryn Higley would like to "Support by eating" the produce of Fuku? No? Why ever not?