Europe, with 1/10th our exposure, is warning its citizens

The Fukushima nuclear disaster has — and continues to — expose America to ten times as much radioactivity as Europe. But now Europe is warning its citizens about the health danger. Why has American government remained silent on the danger and how to mitigate exposure to cancer-causing radioactivity? Do we value corporate profits over human health?

Europeans are being warned against “risky behaviors,” like drinking milk and eating vegetables:

The risks associated with iodine-131 contamination in Europe are no longer “negligible,” according to CRIIRAD, a French research body on radioactivity. The NGO is advising pregnant women and infants against “risky behaviour,” such as consuming fresh milk or vegetables with large leaves….

CRIIRAD, a French research body on radioactivity, an NGO, said it had detected radioactive iodine-131 in rainwater in south-eastern France.

In parallel testing, the French Institute for Radiological Protection and Nuclear Safety (IRSN), the national public institution monitoring nuclear and radiological risks, found iodine 131 in milk.

In normal times, no trace of iodine-131 should be detectable in rainwater or milk.

…Data for the west coast of the United States, which received the Fukushima radioactive fallout 6-10 days before France, reveals that levels of radioactive iodine-131 concentration are 8-10 times higher there, the institute says.

My kids, who have avoided vegetables for a long time, will probably welcome this news. But I find it scary that our government is mute on this issue, which could possibly give thousands (millions?) of Americans cancer.

Posted by James on Tuesday, April 12, 2011