Fukushima Released Twice As
Much Radioactive Material As First Thought
Fukushima Power Plant
EMF Protection Devices
Magnetic Field Detector
Friday 28 October 2011
Fukushima nuclear disaster released twice as much
radioactive caesium into the atmosphere as Japanese
authorities estimated, reaching 40% of the total from
Chernobyl, according to a preliminary report.
of caesium-137 were reported by a worldwide network of
sensors. Andreas Stohl, author of a study by the Norwegian
Institute for Air Research, said the Japanese government's
estimate came only from data in Japan and
would have missed emissions blown out to sea.
did not consider health implications but caesium-137 is
dangerous because it can last for decades in the
environment, releasing cancer-causing radiation.
long-term effects of the nuclear accident are unclear
because of the difficulty in measuring radiation doses
telephone interview Stohl said emission estimates were so
imprecise that finding twice the amount of caesium was not
considered a major difference. He said some previous
estimates had been higher than his.
Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics posted
the report online for comment but
the study is still under formal review by experts in the
field and has not been accepted for publication.
the Japanese government estimated that the 11 March
Fukushima accident released 15,000 terabecquerels of cesium.
The terabecquerel is a radiation measurement. The new report
from Stohl and co-authors estimates about 36,000
terabecquerels through to 20 April. That is about 42% of the
estimated release from Chernobyl, the report says.
at Japan's Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency said it
could not offer any comment on the study because it had not
reviewed the contents.
says about a fifth of the ceasium fell on land in Japan,
while most of the rest fell into the Pacific Ocean. About 2%
came down on land outside Japan, it concludes.
radiation from the accident has been detected in Tokyo and
the United States but experts say they expect no significant
health consequences there.
of small children in Tokyo worry about the discovery of
radiation hotspots even though government officials say they
don't pose a health risk. The previous prime minister, Naoto
Kan, has said the most contaminated areas inside the
evacuation zone could be uninhabitable for decades.
that his study found caesium-137 emissions dropped suddenly
at the time workers started spraying water on the spent fuel
pool from one of the reactors. That challenged previous
thinking that the pool had not been emitting caesium, he