United Nations Agency Downplays Increased Radiation in Europe
November 11, 2011
The United Nations nuclear agency is reportinghigher than normal radiation levels in the Czech Republic and elsewhere in Europe, but states the increase is not a public health risk. The International Atomic Energy Agency says that “very low levels” of iodine-131 have been measured in the atmosphere.
The IAEA does not know the source of the radiation, but says it is not related to Japan’s Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster, which spread radiation around the world in March.
Following the disaster, scientists warned that Fukushima radiation posed a threat to Europe. In April, an independent French radiation commission said the health risk from iodine-131 contaminationwas “no longer negligible.” The Commission de Recherche et d’Information Indépendantes sur la Radioactivité said the warning was not only applicable to France, but other European nations as well, including Belgium, Germany, Italy and Switzerland.
The report of increased levels of iodine-131 follows a report released on November 3indicating the release of xenon from spontaneous radioactive decay at Fukushima. The release of xenon gas means that the damage nuclear cores at the plant are still emitting dangerous levels of radiation into the atmosphere.
Prior to this, on October 27, a study conducted by U.S. and European scientists revealed that the crippled plant had released twice the amount of radiation admitted by the Japanese government. The Japanese utility Tepco insisted in mid-October that the amount of radiation released had fallen to about 8 million times less than at the height of the disaster.
Despite the IAEA’s effort to dismiss the risk in Europe, experts agree that the release of radiation from the stricken plant poses a global health risk. Epidemiologist Dr. Steven Wingbelieves millions of people exposed to a very small dose of radiation may produce just as much cancer as a thousand or a few thousand people exposed to that same dose.
According to studies conducted in the wake of the Chernobyl nuclear accident, ionizing radiation is particularly detrimental to early embryonic development, newborns and babies. Exposure to cesium 137 produces “pathological disorders of the vital organs or systems” and can produce grotesque malformations in newborn babies and increase the risk of spontaneous abortions, according to Dr. Yury Bandashevsky, a leading expert on radionuclide contamination.
On November 4, reporter James Corbett told Alex Jones the situation in Japan is still critical. See the rest of Corbett’s report here.
While Tepco and the Japanese government downplay the risks associated with exposure to radiation from Fukushima, a grassroots group called Safecast that is measuring and mapping data on radiation contamination from locations around Japan say radiation levels detected in the voluntary exclusion zone around the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant are now reaching the equivalent of six X-rays per day.
The IAEA and officialdom are doing a great disservice to humanity by downplaying the detection of increased radiation levels in Europe and elsewhere. Jacqueline Cabasso, the Executive Director of the Western States Legal Foundation, pointed out in April that even the U.S. Department of Energy has testified that there is no level of radiation that is so low that it is without health risks.
“Nobody is talking about the fact that there is no safe dose of radiation,” Cabasso said.