A Deadly Evacuation
Excerpts from the Report of the United Nations Scientific Committee on the Effects of Atomic Radiation (UNSCEAR) 7- 31 May, 2013 General Assembly Records.
Chapter III Scientific findings [Fukushima]
“1. The accident and the release of radioactive material into the environment.
On 11 March 2011, at 14:46 [2:46 pm] local time, a 9.0 magnitude earthquake occurred near Honshu, Japan, creating a devastating tsunami that left a trail of death and destruction in its wake.
The earthquake and subsequent tsunami, which flooded over 500 square kilometres of land, resulted in the loss of more than 20,000 lives.
The loss of off-site and on-site electrical power and compromised safety systems at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power station led to severe core damage to three of the six nuclear reactors on the site.
The Government of Japan recommended the evacuation of about 78,000 people living within a 20-km (12 mile) radius of the power plant and the sheltering in their own homes of about 62,000 other people living between 20 and 30 km from the plant. However, the evacuations themselves also had repercussions for the people involved, including a number of evacuation-related deaths and the subsequent impact on mental and social well-being
Those “evacuation-related deaths” would eventually total 1,600, with 90% of them caused by Japan’s reliance on American radiation safety standards that are based on a fraud that began in the 1920’s. More on that in coming episodes.
That fraud, committed by a Nobel laureate and formalised by the U.S. in the 1950’s, became regulatory dogma that has greatly retarded the expansion of CO2-free nuclear power, accelerated Climate Change and caused the deaths of millions who, out of fear of radiation, avoided essential diagnostic methods and treatments, and at Fukushima caused hundreds of suicides by distraught and unstable people, primarily the elderly, who feared that they would never see their homes or businesses again.
The linear model has since been dropped by a number of international bodies specialising in radiation protection.
The daughter of an elderly woman who had hung herself lamented, “If she had not been forced to evacuate, she wouldn’t have killed herself.” (Chapter 7 of the book compares the deaths caused by using fossil fuels instead of emission-free nuclear power).
Children were not allowed to play outside, and topsoil was needlessly removed at great expense from farm fields that became, as a consequence, less fertile.
Hundreds of elderly people were hastily removed from nursing homes and hospitals, only to be scattered across the hardwood floors of gymnasiums, where many died from makeshift medical care, or sometimes none at all.
These deaths were preventable, just as Climate Change can be moderated if the industrialised nations replace the burning of carbon and the use of deadly, inefficient, carbon-reliant windmills and solar farms (chapters 9 and 10) with CO2-free nuclear power as rapidly as possible while developing technologies that support natural processes that can remove CO2 from our atmosphere. Windmills can’t do it. Neither can solar, not singly or combined with wind. For that, we will need an abundance of safe, efficient, CO2-free nuclear power. Nothing else will do.
Here is a podcast with George Erickson talking about Fukushima Daiichi:
The same podcast on Audible
Coming up next week, Episode 4 – Fossil Fuel Frolics.
Links and References
1. Next Episode – Episode 4 – Fossil Fuel Frolics
2. Previous Episode – Episode 2 – The Forward
3. Launching the Unintended Consequences Series
4. Dr. George Erickson on LinkedIn
5. Dr. George Erickson’s Website, Tundracub.com
6. The full pdf version of Unintended Consequences
7. Fukushima by wikipedia
8. We Need Nuclear Power Not Solar – Podcast by George Erickson
9. Hermann Joseph Muller
10. Linear No Threshold Theory on Wikipedia
#UnintendedConsequences #Fukushima #ClimateChange #LinearNoThreshHold #Fission