Radioactive Iodine-131 in Pennsylvania rainwater sample over 3,000% of federal drinking water standard

Published: March 29th, 2011 at 10:11 pm ET
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Governor Corbett Says Public Water Supply Testing Finds No Risk to Public From Radioactivity Found in Rainwater, Pennsylvania Office of the Governor, March 28, 2011:

[Emphasis Added]

… The [Iodine-131] numbers reported in the rainwater samples in Pennsylvania range from 40-100 picocuries per liter (pCi/L). Although these are levels above the background levels historically reported in these areas, they are still about 25 times below the level that would be of concern. The federal drinking water standard for Iodine-131 is three pCi/L. …

On Friday, rainwater samples were taken in Harrisburg, where levels were 41 pCi/L and at nuclear power plants at TMI and Limerick, where levels were 90 to 100 pCi/L.

Corbett emphasized that the drinking water is safe and there is no cause for health concerns. …

“Rainwater is not typically directly consumed,” Corbett said. “However, people might get alarmed by making what would be an inappropriate connection from rainwater to drinking water. By testing the drinking water, we can assure people that the water is safe.” …

Read the release here.

See also: EPA: Radioactive Iodine-131 levels in PA & MA rainwater “exceed maximum contaminant level permitted in drinking water”

Published: March 29th, 2011 at 10:11 pm ET
By
Email Article Email Article
105 comments

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  2. EPA: Radioactive Iodine-131 levels in PA & MA rainwater “exceed maximum contaminant level permitted in drinking water” March 29, 2011
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  5. Vancouver, Canada radiation tests show iodine-131 in rainwater at almost 100 times above US drinking water limit April 8, 2011

105 comments to Radioactive Iodine-131 in Pennsylvania rainwater sample over 3,000% of federal drinking water standard

  • Scott

    The people telling you that this whole event presents no hazard to those of us living in the us are right.

    Most of the heavier particles from this disaster simply fall into the ocean. Some will fall in rain but nearly all are gamma emitters and are easily detected and counted. This is why the only real numbers you see reported are for I 131, they aren’t seeing much else.

    As far as plutonium is concerned, there may be some mixed oxide fuel fuel in those reactors but the actual fuel is in the pools and doesn’t present any hazard for now. Airborne Pu would be easily detected and to my knowledge nobody is reporting any.

    In Alaska, I would see if I could get numbers from the EPA office that does your monitorng there. Ask for the concentration in local milk.

    Yes, some rain water will make it into the ground, some will certainly be ingested by cows, some will certainly make it into your milk. I am having some in my coffee right now.

    Honestly, most of what we are receiving in the US is I 131 and the 8 day half life means that anything grown in the ground should have about zero 131 by the time you eat it.

    There is no reason to fear radioactive materials, in fact some places in south america have extremely high natural deposits, and the locals couldn’t care less, and are in fact quite healthy.
    My only real concern would be if I lived in Alaska.
    I would probably stop using the local milk until this event ends, get canned or dry stuff.


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  • Scott

    To Paul Panza, try using any search engine, I find several photos of the facility at Fukushima, and of course they have cooling towers.
    They would not routinely use sea water, as you hint, because there is too much salt in it.

    You have no idea what you are talking about so please just scare your family and friends, we don’t need you scaring the hell out of people just because you read one book.

    And Pu is definitely NOT made for the military in commercial reactors, in spite of what you may have read. It is a waste product of the fuel cycle and is NEVER removed from the fuel at commercial facilities.


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