Expert: ‘The worst’ from Fukushima has left Japan and is headed to US, Canada — “Most of the radioactivity” moving with currents toward west coast — Report: Front edge of plume arrives in Gulf of Alaska — State: “There’s been a detection of cesium from Fukushima”

Published: March 9th, 2014 at 6:24 pm ET


Interview with Ken Buessler, scientist at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution and director of the Center for Marine and Environmental Radioactivity, Mar. 7, 2014:

  • Buesseler: The concern is not as much from our direct exposure in the ocean, but internalizing it and getting those, say, through seafood and other sources.
  • Jay Johnson, host: How much time will it take to recover from this contamination, if it is possible to recover at all?
  • Buesseler: Ocean currents mix the isotopes that are in the water across the Pacific. It is about 5,000 miles to the west coast of North America. And we just saw it in the sea, the front edge of that plume on the west coast, again, the concentrations are much lower than at the source. These things will be diluted along the way moving at the speed of ocean currents — that is where most of the radioactivity ends up. […] A much smaller amount […] is going to remain for decades near Japan.
  • Johnson: If I understood you correctly, you are suggesting that the worst has passed in Japan, but now the radioactive plume is actually slowly migrating towards the West Coast
  • Buesseler: Correct! […] currents themselves […] follow the pathways that we know something about, but it is very hard to predict exactly what the concentrations will be on the west coast. By all predictions they will not be of human health concern on our coast.
  • Johnson: I have to say you are the most positive reporter that I’ve had.

Alaska Journal of Commerce, February 2014: Citing information from the Environmental Protection Agency, the Food and Drug Administration and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, the Pacific states including Hawaii, California, Oregon and Washington, as well as Health Canada, “all have demonstrated there are no levels of radiation that are of a public health concern,” said Marty Brewer, director of DEC’s Environmental Health Division. She added that only small amounts of radiation have been detected from the reactor source. “There has been detection of cesium that is reportedly from Fukushima but at miniscule levels,” Brewer said.

USA Today, Mar. 9, 2014: A report presented last week at a conference of the American Geophysical Union’s Ocean Sciences Section showed that some Cesium 134 has already has arrived in Canada, in the Gulf of Alaska area.

See also: [intlink id=”nbc-nightly-news-has-radiation-entered-our-food-supply-chain-usa-today-news-getting-worse-at-fukushima-widespread-suspicion-leaks-are-being-underreported-expert-im-not” type=”post”]{{empty}}[/intlink]

Published: March 9th, 2014 at 6:24 pm ET


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143 comments to Expert: ‘The worst’ from Fukushima has left Japan and is headed to US, Canada — “Most of the radioactivity” moving with currents toward west coast — Report: Front edge of plume arrives in Gulf of Alaska — State: “There’s been a detection of cesium from Fukushima”

  • Nick

    "American and Canadian authorities have virtually stopped monitoring airborne radiation, and are not testing fish for radiation. (Indeed, the EPA reacted to Fukushima by raising “acceptable” radiation levels.)"

    The ONLY thing our government has done is to NOT TEST.

    Test not what your government won't test for you!

  • Nick
    by WashingtonsBlog
    “Acceptable” Radiation Standards Don’t Take Into Account the Vulnerability of Children … Or Some Adults


  • rogerthat

    More Wikipedia: ''… The World Health Organization stated that a 2013 thyroid ultrasound screening programme was, due to the screening effect, likely to lead to an increase in recorded thyroid cases .''
    ''This screening program found that more than a third (36%) of children in the Prefecture have abnormal growths in their thyroid glands, however whether these growths can be attributed to exposure to nuclear radiation has not yet been proven.''

  • Nick

    When the Pacific Ocean starts to warm-up due to a lowered phytoplankton load, no one will connect Fukushima's toxins to that fact.

    No, we will hear global climate change crap.

    I really don't give a rat's ass about climate change, it's genetic damage of the biosphere that is a problem

    We fool ourselves into thinking/believing/hoping that Fukushima won't CHANGE our world.

    It has. It will. Forever.

    That is a new reality that we all must discover.

  • Chief

    I am so glad that Buesseler feels the worst is over for Japan. Imagine the relief the Japanese people must feel now to know that there is light at the end of the tunnel.

    Now for reality. As long as you have an open pit nuclear BBQ and you are flushing it with water that makes its' way to the sea, you will continue to have the worst. I think that the beginning of the best will come in 12,000 to 25,000 years.

    As long as contaminated water spews into the Pacific, we will see the worst. When it mixes with the Atlantic and Indian oceans, we will see the dead. The Panama canal is a direct link over to the Atlantic. in our lifetimes, radiation is forever.

    • HoTaters HoTaters

      Some scientists believe water contaminated with radiation may already have made its way into the Atlantic Ocean via the Bering Strait. It would have traveled through the Beaufort Sea, and would have exited into the Atlantic Ocean between Baffin Island and the North American mainland. Exit points into the Atlantic lay near Labrador and Greenland. See this article for details:

      One can assume if this process has begun, it is still taking place.

      • HoTaters HoTaters

        IMO (and I don't know the actual amount of seawater that passes through the locks in the Panama Canal daily) it's likely more contaminated water is getting into the Atlantic through the Bering Strait than the Panama Canal. But w/o figures on water flows and seasonal water flow patterns, currents, etc., it's hard to say, for sure.

        I'm just basing that assumption on the fact the Bering Strait is much larger than the Panama Canal channel. Plus the flow of water through the Panama Canal is controlled by the lock system there.

        Chief, am curious to know why you think contaminated water is getting through the Panama Canal. Please explain; interesting hypothesis. Take my two cent's worth with a grain of salt if you want.

        Here's an interesting map of ocean and wind currents:

        The Kuroshio current carries a lot of contaminated water up into the region around Alaska.

        Am also assuming the Equatorial Current would buffer the entrance of the Panama Canal so that incoming radiation contaminated H2O from the Pacific is at least partially deflected away from the area.

        Currents north of Bering Strait in winter:

        Kuroshio current:

        A 1943 ocean currents map:

  • “There’s been a detection of cesium from Fukushima”


    • bo bo

      That is the day I stop being a vegan.

      • name999 name999

        bo, you mean you would eat his head? Now that is pretty gross!
        It would probably be pretty contaminated with waste also.

        • bo bo

          True Name999 I apologize.. that was a barbaric comment…
          I often do have dark thoughts regarding pro nukers though… if they were served as dinner I think it would be aporopriate to do a sushi boat… and call it Tepco-maki

          Burn this post

    • Johnny Blade Johnny Blade

      I posted the above at 2:13am CDT when it caught my eye after waking up just sickened every hour or 2 last night. When I read this it didn't help me sleep any better! It's pretty damned obvious that contaminants released @ Fukushima much more recently than 3/11/11 would be found & not a "surprise" at similar levels ANYWHERE between the Pacific & Atlantic coastlines as well as on into Europe & back around again & so on. My wife & I have both been getting sicker for some reason lately and why wouldn't we be with the layer of "hot" ice covering this joint since the snow started melting today & refroze in a layer of ice that even covered the doors & windows which effectively "locked us in" until I broke through the front doors 3 inch thick entombing cover and worked my way around the rest of the exterior including the back door before I had to run to the bathroom with the runs and within a half hour my nose started gushing blood for a long time(?)!! I NEVER get nosebleeds unless it's brutally cold & dry and never like this! My chest hurts now too but that might be from the heartache of the memories of the days that followed that fateful 311 as the smoldering,melting fuel rods led to explosions and releases that hammered us much worse than the "insignificant,trace amounts of radionuclides which posed no immediate threat to the public" began depositing globally in layers ever since & will continue for eternity! 🙁 Eternity may be able to be assigned an "end date" now!…

      • Johnny Blade Johnny Blade

        Maybe it's psychosomatic considering how we all felt during that horrible Spring 2011??!! But it's not being "overcautious" when we do everything we can to avoid being caught in the April Showers that have been bringing mutant May flowers anymore! 🙁 I have been ambitiously campaigning every year to friends,family & friends of friends & anyone who'll listen when I try to warn them about the rains that the sheep still allow themselves the illusion that I USED to have that it was "refreshing" & "invigorating" to be out in the "cleansing" & "nourishing" rain showers alongside the kiddies & the family pets!! 😐 It's so sickening & just plain WRONG that anyone should feel this way via sound logic & judgement calls that the "New World Odor" demands of us now! Today's melting snow,ice has my face burning like sunburn and my eyes are puffy red slits right now and I'd never expected to have to assume there's always gonna be more to worry about when the jetstream send wicked weather our way! 🙁 "Weather" we're ready for or not(?)!~STAY OUT OF THE RAIN~ 😐 G-Nite "NEWSER's!!! 😉 …