Expert: ‘The worst’ from Fukushima has left Japan and is headed to US, Canada — “Most of the radioactivity” moving with currents toward west coast — Report: Front edge of plume arrives in Gulf of Alaska — State: “There’s been a detection of cesium from Fukushima”
March 9th, 2014
Interview with Ken Buessler, scientist at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution and director of the Center for Marine and Environmental Radioactivity, Mar. 7, 2014:
Buesseler: The concern is not as much from our direct exposure in the ocean, but internalizing it and getting those, say, through seafood and other sources.
Jay Johnson, host: How much time will it take to recover from this contamination, if it is possible to recover at all?
Buesseler: Ocean currents mix the isotopes that are in the water across the Pacific. It is about 5,000 miles to the west coast of North America. And we just saw it in the sea, the front edge of that plume on the west coast, again, the concentrations are much lower than at the source. These things will be diluted along the way moving at the speed of ocean currents — that is where most of the radioactivity ends up. [...] A much smaller amount [...] is going to remain for decades near Japan.
Johnson: If I understood you correctly, you are suggesting that the worst has passed in Japan, but now the radioactive plume is actually slowly migrating towards the West Coast
Buesseler: Correct! [...] currents themselves [...] follow the pathways that we know something about, but it is very hard to predict exactly what the concentrations will be on the west coast. By all predictions they will not be of human health concern on our coast.
Johnson: I have to say you are the most positive reporter that I’ve had.
Alaska Journal of Commerce, February 2014: Citing information from the Environmental Protection Agency, the Food and Drug Administration and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, the Pacific states including Hawaii, California, Oregon and Washington, as well as Health Canada, “all have demonstrated there are no levels of radiation that are of a public health concern,” said Marty Brewer, director of DEC’s Environmental Health Division. She added that only small amounts of radiation have been detected from the reactor source. “There has been detection of cesium that is reportedly from Fukushima but at miniscule levels,” Brewer said.
USA Today, Mar. 9, 2014: A report presented last week at a conference of the American Geophysical Union’s Ocean Sciences Section showed that some Cesium 134 has already has arrived in Canada, in the Gulf of Alaska area.