Fukushima Caesium Leaks 'Equal 168 Hiroshimas'
Fukushima Power Plant
Electromagnetic Radiation Protection
Electromagnetic Field Meter
25 Aug 2011
Japan's government estimates the amount of radioactive
caesium-137 released by the Fukushima nuclear disaster so
far is equal to that of 168 Hiroshima bombs.
Government nuclear experts, however, said the World War
II bomb blast and the accidental reactor meltdowns at
Fukushima, which has seen ongoing radiation leaks but no
deaths so far, were beyond comparison.
The amount of caesium-137 released since the three
reactors were crippled by the March 11 quake and tsunami has
been estimated at 15,000 tera becquerels, the Tokyo Shimbun
reported, quoting a government calculation.
That compares with the 89 tera becquerels released by
"Little Boy", the uranium bomb the United States dropped on
the western Japanese city in the final days of World War II,
the report said.
The estimate was submitted by Prime Minister Naoto Kan's
cabinet to a lower house committee on promotion of
technology and innovation, the daily said.
The government, however, argued that the comparison was
While the Hiroshima bomb claimed most of its victims in
the intense heatwave of a mid-air nuclear explosion and the
highly radioactive fallout from its mushroom cloud, no such
nuclear explosions hit Fukushima.
There, the radiation has seeped from molten fuel inside
reactors damaged by hydrogen explosions.
"An atomic bomb is designed to enable mass-killing and
mass-destruction by causing blast waves and heat rays and
releasing neutron radiation," the Tokyo Shimbun daily quoted
a government official as saying. "It is not rational to make
a simple comparison only based on the amount of isotopes
Government officials were not immediately available to
confirm the report.
The blinding blast of the Hiroshima bomb and its fallout
killed some 140,000 people, either instantly or in the days
and weeks that followed as high radiation or horrific burns
took their toll.
At Fukushima, Japan declared a 20-kilometre (12 mile)
evacuation and no-go zone around the plant after the March
11 quake and tsunami triggered the world's worst nuclear
accident since Chernobyl 25 years ago.
A recent government survey showed that some areas within
the 20-kilometre zone are contaminated with radiation
equivalent to more than 500 millisieverts per year – 25
times more than the government's annual limit.