Study: Much of Japan’s east, northeast likely contaminated — Yet included NO radiation data before March 19, when explosions spread massive amount of fallout

Published: November 17th, 2011 at 12:43 pm ET
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Cesium fallout widespread, The Japan Times Online, Nov. 17, 2011:

Simulation determines much of east, northeast likely contaminated

[...] Large areas of eastern and northeastern Japan were likely contaminated by the plant, with concentrations of cesium-137 exceeding 1,000 becquerels per kilogram of soil in some places, says the study, which was posted Monday on the website of the National Academy of Sciences. [...] 

But they also played down the incident’s impact on the three distant regions. [...]

“The study doesn’t include fallout data on cesium-137 from before March 19.”Because the science ministry didn’t have daily deposition data between March 12 and 19 (a period in which the nuclear plant was racked by hydrogen explosions), the actual figure could be higher than our estimation,” [Tetsuzo Yasunari, a Nagoya University professor and climate system specialist] said. [...]

There is no data for Fukushima up until March 26, and no data is available for Miyagi as of Thurday.

“But as for the western part of Japan and Hokkaido, I don’t think the given figure would increase” even if data from the March 12-19 period — when the hydrogen explosions likely spread a great deal of fallout — were to be added, Yasunari said.”

Published: November 17th, 2011 at 12:43 pm ET
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18 comments

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18 comments to Study: Much of Japan’s east, northeast likely contaminated — Yet included NO radiation data before March 19, when explosions spread massive amount of fallout

  • arclight arclight

    Germany’s radioactive boars a legacy of Chernobyl
    For a look at just how long radioactivity can hang around, consider Germany’s wild boars.

    “The German boars roam in forests nearly 950 miles (1,500 kilometers ) from Chernobyl. Yet, the amount of radioactive cesium-137 within their tissue often registers dozens of times beyond the recommended limit for consumption and thousands of times above normal.
    “We still feel the consequences of Chernobyl’s fallout here,” said Christian Kueppers, a radiation expert at Germany’s Institute for Applied Ecology in Freiburg……”

    “The contamination won’t go away any time soon – with cesium’s half-life being roughly 30 years, the radioactivity will only slightly decrease in the coming years.”

    “We assume that wild game will still be similarly affected until 2025 and then very slowly recede,” said Reddemann, of Bavaria’s hunting association. “The problem will certainly still be around for the next 100 years, and Chernobyl will still be an issue for our children and grandchildren.”

    http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/nationworld/2014654517_apeugermanyradioactiveboars.html


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    • arclight arclight

      to add that the “normal range” is normally up to 100 bq/kg because of the previous contamination, was a surprising comment i thought! and they found 25 bq/kg while giving the impression that 100 bq/kg was the nornal??

      kinda contradictory/confusing without explaining the details.. hey ho! i suppose it might “reasure” everyone?? touch of the “playing it down a bit”

      do they have wildlife in japan?

      will there be further emmisions from these plants to “add ” to the new “normal” background level??

      still no talk of sea to land contamination?? happy thoughts only? :)

      oh i saw a video of a guy going for a recent surf on some beach south of daichi… he looked pretty gutted as he finished the interview and walked away (anyone got the link…?)..really left me consider the seemingly small things that the disaster has affected that in reality are the essence of who we have become!! thats the real psychological problem to this disaster in my opinion…low dose in soil does not mean low dose further up the food chain and we are the top predator!!…its not rocket science huh?.

      this sea to land transfer that we have discussed is not a topic that will ever be “on-topic” here at enenews unless CHRIS BUSBY of someone does a video or article on the technicalities of the issue!! we know that the local shoreline sediment stretching out many kilometers is a type that will retain the isotopes.. what isotopes? we need info on sea silt flow.. and we need an understanding of the leeching process and possible contamination build up in future hot spot areas like estuaries, tributaries resovoirs etc….

      good to see japan times attempting the impossible and trying to enlighten people in these dark times… but we need an action plan for the next 5 years at least for the effected coastal mountain areas..

      wondered a bit of topic but 100 bq/kg?? and the contamination is still on the move for a few decades?? with no mention of the coast?

      food for…


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      • Clocka

        Wildlife in Japan is virtually unknown, except in the farthest reaches of Hokkaido which is not under the nuclear yoke.


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        • arclight arclight

          “Read articles on Japan’s natural history including profiles of some of the animals, fish, insects and birds living on the Japanese archipelago: the Japanese Serow, the Japanese Macaque or Snow Monkey, Red Foxes, Giant Salamanders and the Red-crowned Crane.

          Japan has a rich and diverse natural wildlife including a variety of endemic animal and plant species which are, in some cases, extremely rare. A number of Japan’s other creatures such as the Blakiston’s Fish Owl and the Japanese Crested Ibis are also highly endangered and in need of strict conservation and protection.

          The fauna and flora of Japan is divided into three distinct climatic zones: the Siberian sub-arctic zone of Hokkaido, the temperate zone of Honshu, Shikoku and Kyushu and the sub-tropical zone encompassing the islands of Okinawa. Within these zones are many different habitats that can support Japan’s diverse fauna and flora including coastal wetlands, mixed forests and alpine meadows.

          With a nature-centered religion in the form of Shinto and an long artistic tradition in painting and design based on the depiction of the natural world and its changing seasons, Japan can be a nature-lover’s paradise that increasingly attracts a growing number of hikers, climbers, birders and whale-watchers to appreciate its considerable natural charms among its many National Parks, remote unspoilt islands, rugged mountains and hot springs (onsen).”

          Read more: http://www.japanvisitor.com/index.php?cID=449&pID=2235#ixzz1e034q1mq

          http://www.japanvisitor.com/index.php?cID=449&pID=2235


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          • jonjon

            This sounds like a commercial for Japan. I’ve been coming to Japan ever since I’m a little child, and have also lived there for 10 years. Japan may have some endemic species but they are struggling to survive in a hostile environment where human hands always screw up the natural flow of the life cycle.
            More than anywhere in the world, the Japanese like concrete (cement). All river beds are concreted, dams are being built everyday in the most remote region, sand is removed to make terapods (wave breakers) and more concrete, every little stream is transformed into a concrete gutter, every natural beach is destroyed by sea walls, terapods, and land fills.
            The Japanese may have had a reverence for nature when the Shinto religion and its mythology was in everyone’s consciousness. This was the time when Japan was a beautiful country. This consciousness is long gone.
            A corrupt elite with a subdued and indifferent people is what’s left of Japan. This gives all destructive public works project the green light. For the construction (concrete) industry, the tsunami was one of the best opportunity to produce more concrete and raise the height of sea walls all across Japan.
            Like any corrupt industry, where bribes are as common as hostess bars, they use fear to put into effect their goal of burring most of japan under lumps of concrete.
            Environmental consciousness is indeed almost non existent in Japan. Where else do you see people who leave their car engine on while grocery shopping, or who burn they TV set and plastic garbages in they own backyard? Maybe Indonesia and some other developing countries where people are uneducated. Surprisingly Japan is no different outside of major cities where burning plastic wastes would get you fined because one of your neighbor would be denouncing you to the police or city hall.
            Fukushima is the culmination of this sad picture. A corrupt elite and an indifferent, subdued, and dumb downed population.


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        • arclight arclight

          Cervus nippon
          “This species was reviewed by Feldhamer (1980) and Banwell (1999). Native and introduced populations seriously threatened by genetic pollution; numerous populations are of uncertain provenance or have mixed ancestry; the status of C. n. hortulorum is particularly uncertain. Groves (2006) reviewed the species’ taxonomy and concluded that four species are involved, C. nippon of southern Japan, C. yesoensis of central and northern Japan, C. taiouanus of Taiwan, and C. hortulorum of the mainland range. However, we consider all of these as subspecies of C. nippon, pending further information. The following subspecies are also widely recognized:

          C. n. aplodontus (North Honshu Sika);
          CC. n. yesoensis (Hokkaido Sika): Japan;
          C. n. keramae (Ryukyu or Kerama Sika): Japan;
          C. n. pulchellus: Japan ? Tsushima Islands.”

          http://www.iucnredlist.org/apps/redlist/details/41788/0

          picture of their habitat

          http://www.iucnredlist.org/apps/redlist/details/41788/0/rangemap


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        • arclight arclight

          “A limestone reef from the Pacific is stranded in western Honshu’s geological make-up. How did it get there? Japanese geology is complex: part volcanic, mostly sedimentary. Among those sediments are oceanic rocks and seafloor deposits, including atoll coral reefs. One coral atoll has been incorporated into the body of Honshu, Japan’s main island, through ancient accretionary tectonics.

          The Limestones of Akiyoshidai National Park
          Yamaguchi Prefecture, in far western Honshu, hosts a broad area of exposed limestone karst, 130 km² in extent. This is Akiyoshi plateau (Akiyoshi-dai), designated as a Natural Monument by the Japanese government and showcased as a geological park and site museum.

          The biggest attraction is the Shuhodo, or Akiyoshi-do, cavern. Caves are a typical feature of karst landscapes: water percolating down from the surface dissolves limestone, and subsurface streams gradually carve out underground hollows. About 1 km of the 10 km of the surveyed system of 440 caves is open to the public, where a blue-ceiling cavern and a series of travertine stepped pools can be seen.

          http://gina-barnes.suite101.com/a-pacific-coral-atoll-embedded-in-japan-a140519


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        • arclight arclight

          Geographic Range [top]
          Range Description: Megalurus pryeri is known to breed at six localities on Honshu, in the prefectures of Aomori, Akita, Ibaraki and Chiba, Japan, in Jiangxi, Jiangsu and probably in Heilongjiang and Liaoning, China and at Lake Khanka, Russia. Surveys in 2007 at Poyang Lake, Jiangxi, China indicated the presence of a potentially large population, estimated to be up to 5,000 pairs, 1,500 of which are within Nanjishan National Nature Reserve3,4, and it has recently been found breeding on the Yangtze estuary (Jiangsu province)5 and in the Shanghai area6. In 2001 it was breeding in Japan at Lower Iwaki-gawa (c37-142 breeding males), Hotokenuma (35-448 breeding males), lower reach of Tonegawa (69-375 breeding males), Byoubusan area (nine singing males) and Ukishima (68-30 individuals in 1998)1,2. Its population at Ogata-sogen (=Hachiro-gata, 58-122 breeding males in the late 1970s) has declined and recently disappeared2. It winters in Honshu and the Shikoku Islands, Japan and the Yangtze basin, China. There are a few records from eastern Mongolia and South Korea and it almost certainly occurs in North Korea. The population in Japan is estimated to be c.2,500 birds1,2.

          Countries: Native:
          China; Japan; Korea, Republic of; Mongolia; Russian Federation

          http://74.6.238.254/search/srpcache?ei=UTF-8&p=nature+reserves+honshu&fr=ie8&u=http://cc.bingj.com/cache.aspx?q=nature+reserves+honshu&d=5027006164306599&mkt=en-US&setlang=en-US&w=326fd6f5,4c76a6af&icp=1&.intl=us&sig=9K8n9mUVTKQFlQkLWfLHLg–


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      • “this sea to land transfer…”
        (of radioactive contamination)

        “…but we need an action plan for the next 5 years at least for the effected coastal mountain areas…” – arclight

        Probably a good idea. I have heard of no plan. (?)


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  • SteveMT

    CBS News: Japan finds radioactive rice, bans shipment
    November 17, 2011 9:57 AM (again just the tip of the iceberg)

    Japan has banned shipments of rice grown near a tsunami-hit nuclear power plant for the first time after detecting radiation exceeding the legal limit.

    Chief Cabinet Secretary Osamu Fujimura said Thursday that a sample of rice from a farm contained 630 becquerels of cesium per kilogram. Cesium is among the radioactive materials that leaked from the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear plant after it was damaged by a March 11 earthquake and tsunami. Under Japanese regulations, rice with more than 500 becquerels of cesium per kilogram is not allowed to be consumed.

    Officials have tested rice at hundreds of spots in Fukushima, and none had previously exceeded the limit. Fukushima only last month declared that rice grown in the prefecture was safe.

    http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-202_162-57326700/japan-finds-radioactive-rice-bans-shipment/


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    • jonjon

      That’s not reassuring in any way. Testing for cesium or assuming there’s only cesium is delusional. How about all the other radionuclides such as strontium, uranium and plutonium?
      Oh right they don’t test for plutonium anymore… because if it’s there it goes without saying it didn’t come from those meltdowns!


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  • fireguyjeff fireguyjeff

    arc:
    Not sure why you say that the sea to land contamination would be considered “off topic” here.
    Based on how I know most of us here are thinking about Fuku, I can’t imagine anyone interpreting it to be OT.
    The sea to land problem is a huge one!

    And yes, Japan does have wild life.
    Lots of it.

    That you are aware of the “up the food chain” problem is significant, as so many people who study this don’t understand the idea. I think it is good that you brought it up. It is too much like thinking about retirement planning when you are 16 years old.

    My nutrition studies years ago led me down a very difficult rabbit hole in terms of industrial compounds concentrating up the food chain. The issue tends to be toward the nasty stuff concentrating in the fatty tissue(s). Especially the chlorinated hydrocarbons. The industrial foods nightmare was a hard one to digest. Fuku is so much beyond that in terms comprehending for the long term.

    The notion some people have that this mess will some how subside in decades is so incredibly delusional. The reality avoidance aspect of human psychology is something I will never understand.

    Fukushima and nuclear will for sure leave us deeply into what Buckminster Fuller was so prophetic about….
    “Our generation will likely be remembered as the most reviled generation in all of human history” due to what we have doen to the planet.
    And he was simply thinking about petroleum consumption!
    He was very clear that nuclear “anything”, especially energy and weapons, has no place on the planet.


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