Radiation from Japan's nuclear meltdown detected in milk, fruit and vegetable samples from California farms
Nuclear energy is clean … until it isn’t.
The emerging reality of the ongoing nuclear reactor crisis in Fukushima, Japan – now in its third month after a devastating earthquake and tsunami caused nuclear explosions at the plant 150 miles north of Tokyo – is that it is not under control at all.
“The Swiss government Wednesday decided to exit nuclear energy, phasing out the country's existing nuclear plants and seeking alternative energy sources to meet Switzerland's energy needs, following widespread security concerns in the wake of the Fukushima nuclear disaster in Japan.” - Dow Jones, May 25, 2011
Radiation from Fukushima is entering the U.S. food chain
Authorities in the U.S. insist that there is no danger to public health or the environment from the Fukushima nuclear crisis, and that levels of radiation that have been detected in water, air, soil and food in North America since the accident are in such minuscule quantities as to present little to no danger.
However, there is evidence to the contrary.
EPA discontinued its Fukushima radiation monitoring efforts, and FDA says there is no danger to our food or seafood and therefore testing is not necessary. There have been no calls since the accident for heightened nuclear safety inspections or to upgrade or decommission aging nuclear power plants in the U.S.
Yet, in limited testing conducted by states and independent labs since the accident, radioactive iodine and cesium – both toxic to human health – have appeared at elevated levels in milk and vegetables produced in California. Radiation has also been detected in milk sold in Arizona, Arkansas, Hawaii, Vermont and Washington since the accident.
Radiation concentrates in milk because cows eat grass, and grass and broad-leafed vegetables such as spinach and kale are among the first crops to accumulate radiation from nuclear fallout when it comes down in rain and dust, settling on the leaves and surrounding soil.
Ironically, organically raised cows are more vulnerable, as they are required to eat grass as part of organic certification standards, reports NewHope360.com, an industry news source. However, organic proponents ensure consumers that any levels of radiation are minute and present no risk, and that the benefits of consuming organic milk far outweigh any such risks.
While we may not be able to affect what’s going on at Fukushima, we could certainly try to prevent such an accident from happening again. We need to express our concern and speak out to the President, who supports nuclear power, and Congress. We need to insist that aging reactors be inspected regularly, upgraded for safety, and decommissioned when necessary.
Letter writing works when you’ve got lots of constituents doing it.
This global-scale crisis happened from just one nuclear power plant. There are 104 nuclear reactors in operation in the U.S., with a number of them located in major earthquake and tsunami zones in heavily populated areas along the West Coast of the United States.
Radiation from the damaged Fukushima nuclear reactor in Japan continues to leak into the atmosphere and the ocean. Just how worried should we be? It depends on whom you ask.
Certainly the people living close to the crippled reactors are in the greatest danger. The Japanese government is permanently relocating people away from wider areas around the plant to reduce their long-term risk of contamination. One report even says that the government is considering moving the nation’s capitol away from Tokyo due to increasing radiation levels found there.
Since the Japanese tsunami and the trouble at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant, the question of radiation in seafood seems to plague a lot of folks … unnecessarily.
Agreement is widespread among people who know that there is little reason for concern. Probably as a result of overblown public fears, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration recently said it is requiring seafood imported from Japan to be checked for radiation before it enters the food supply.
Natural-foods stores sell out of radiation-fighting supplements
Returning from the Natural Products Expo West on Monday, I discovered something very disturbing and yet fascinating as I went shopping at my local natural-foods store in my hometown of Boulder.
All of the kelp dietary supplements were sold out.
This is a phenomenon that is occurring in natural-foods stores throughout the western USA. While government officials are saying risk of radiation exposure is low from the nuclear reactor catastrophe in Japan, US citizens aren’t buying it. Instead, they are buying foods, nutritional supplements and natural medicines to counter the effects of radiation, to the point where these products are out of stock in stores throughout the West.
Europe has banned the use of X-ray body scanners in airports, because they cause cancer. The EU set a new regulation on November 12, 2011, that the scanners are too dangerous for use on the general public. The United States has over 250 of these body scanners in use and the federal security agency TSA plans to increase deployment everywhere.