Title: Two years have passed since Japan nuked the rest of the world
Date: March 11, 2013
This year, on the second anniversary of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster, the author would like to pose the following questions, and invite the reader to do the same.
Fukushima is no Chernobyl…right?
To date, all attempts to model or accurately measure the core damage and radiation releases from the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant in the wake of the March 11th earthquake and tsunami have proved incomplete, unreliable, and admittedly unable to accurately replicate the sequence of events, largely due to the lack of information available [...]
Still, much has been said about the radioactive releases from Fukushima Daiichi, but one thing remains certain; anyone who attempts to make definitive statements as to minimize the size or scale of the release can do no better than to offer some rudimentary stab at the issue, as the data released to date is woefully insufficient. What little recorded data has been published and peer reviewed has yielded some startling results, which may infer some insight into why so many pro-nuclear voices have been so quick and adamant in their downplaying of the disaster. [...]
More recent studies have estimated that some 27.1 PBq of Cs-137 was released at Fukushima Daiichi into the ocean just during the first four months of the disaster. Additionally, studies have placed the aerial release between 36.6 PBq and 66 PBq for the first week of the disaster. Conservatively adding the 27.1 PBq aqueous release with the 36.6 PBq aerial release yields a 63.7 PBq combined Cs 137 release. [...]
It has also been popular for pro-nuclear lobbyists to promote the idea that the release at Fukushima Daiichi was not equal to or greater than Chernobyl, and even more, that the potential source release was never on a scale comparable to the 1986 Soviet nuclear disaster. [...]
Chernobyl Cesium 137 Inventory and Release [...] 85 PBq [...]
Note: Using Fukushima’s high end estimate for aerial releases of 66* PBq cesium-137 (only includes the first week), plus the 27.1 PBq of aqueous release, totals 93.1 PBq of cesium-137 released from Fukushima Daiichi — Chernobyl is 85 PBq.
*The estimate used for aerial releases of 66 PBq cesium-137 from Fukushima Daiichi only includes the releases “for the first week of the disaster”.
See also: Gundersen: "I think Fukushima Daiichi released somewhat more radiation than Chernobyl" (VIDEO)
Published: March 11th, 2013 at 10:08 pm ET