The Dose Deception – Why 0.20 µSv/hr (from fallout) can be far more dangerous than 2.00 µSv/hr (from cosmic rays). The inverse square law for ionizing radiation illustrated.

DISCLAIMER + [January 25, 2014:  Important disclaimer added at the end of this blogpost + Important INTRODUCTION ADDED to differentiate between different types of doses more clearly.  Please also note: this is a simplification; the complete picture is more complex.]

DISCLAIMER
> click me <

Kyoto, Japan – Monday November 25, 2013Shortlink: http://wp.me/puwO9-2iY

For an expert brief synopsis of the inverse square law, see NDT Resource Center.

Any point source which spreads its influence equally in all directions without a limit to its range will obey the inverse square law. This comes from strictly geometrical considerations. The intensity of the influence at any given radius (r) is the source strength divided by the area of the sphere. Being strictly geometric in its origin, the inverse square law applies to diverse phenomena. Point sources of gravitational force, electric field, light, sound, and radiation obey the inverse square law.

See below, enlarged.

Understanding the inverse square law for ionizing radiation is one of the keys to see through the most commonly used deception of the nuclear industry’s propaganda machine.   The other aspect, covered in the introduction, is the different types of “dose”.  This blog post is mainly about equivalent and absorbed doses (see intro for differentiation).  Any time pro-nuclear apologists bring up ‘X-rays’ or ‘air plane flights’, when comparing to dose rates from radioactive fallout or food contamination, intentionally or not, you’re often dealing with crafty nuclear propaganda.

Introduction

The issue, when there is one (it all depends upon the reporting), boils down to the intricacies surrounding the huge differences between external and internal radiation, and that reporting on the matter is sometimes done in deceptive and misleading ways.  This blogpost goes into the very superficial basics of what is deceptive about some radiation reports that “compare doses”.  For debunking the specific banana-comparison nonsense spewed by nuclear insiders, see Cs-137 versus K-40 in real life.

External radiation is radiation where the emitting radiation source is outside the body, such as the radiation coming from cosmic rays, or coming from nuclear waste through the sealed waste container, or from the radioactive particles flying around in the air, with the radiation but not the particles entering the body (superficially for alpha or beta, deeply for gamma).

Internal radiation happens if those particles are inhaled and broadcast their signature radiation from within the body upon and through various tissues.  The most common natural internal radiation hazard is Radon-222, a gas commonly found in many unventilated basements.  The most common natural internal radiation source in food is Potassium-40.

On the latter, because Potassium-40 is included in all Potassium, the harm of its radioactivity dwarfs in comparisson to the benefits of Potassium, something that can not be said about any of the main artificial radioactive fission products (such as Cesium-134, cesium-137, Iodine-131, Iodine-131, Strontium-90, Cobalt-60, Plutonium-239, etc.), see more about that, sorry for the repetition, at Cs-137 versus K-40.

Both mere ‘activity‘ (in the units Curie or Becquerel) and ‘dose rate’ (absorbed or equivalent dose per time unit, usually in SI units like µSv/hr (microSievert per hour), gray, mrem/hr, – see my RADIATION UNITS page for more) lend themselves exceptionally well to deceive.  Effective dose comparisons can be helpful, but they are often brought up to compare between absorbed/equivalent and effective doses, which is extremely deceptive in its own ways (example below).

With this introduction and its examples and dozens of additional links added, this blogpost obviously became much longer, but perhaps… if you eat the whole sandwich and sip some links, I think you may get a much better understanding of common dose deceptions, and on what they depend.

First I need to start with the basics of the different types of “dose” concepts in reporting.   The science is actually very clear on the issue.  (By no means do I claim to fully understand all the science involved, though.  See also my DISCLAIMER, if you still haven’t yet.  This overview table summarizes the gist:

Source: Wikipedia Commons

Click to see at larger at the SOURCE:  Wikipedia Commons

  • The ABSORBED DOSE is defined as the mean energy imparted by ionizing radiation to matter of mass in a finite volume.  The SI unit of absorbed dose is J/kg and its special name is the Gray (Gy).
  •  The EQUIVALENT DOSE  is defined as the absorbed dose delivered by radiation type averaged over a tissue or organ; its SI unit is J/kg too, but its special name is the sievert (Sv).
  • The EFFECTIVE DOSE is defined as the summation of tissue equivalent doses, each multiplied by the appropriate tissue weighting factor, to indicate the combination of different doses to several different tissues.
  • There’s also “effective dose equivalent (EDE)”, but I’ll stick to these basics.

Source: Absorbed vs. Equivalent vs. Effective Dose [http://radonc.wikidot.com/absorbed-v-equivalent-v-effective-dose]

A word on how the EFFECTIVE DOSE of radiation in Sieverts is calculated:

In the calculation of ‘the effective dose’ (in Sievert), the type of radiation (alpha, beta, gamma, & respective decay energies), the distance of the source and its subsequent variety of intensities of the radiation at different distances, the type of the tissues involved (with differing radiation weighting factors depending on the tissue type (skin, bone, etc.), etc., all get factored in.   The SI unit for ‘effective dose’ is the sievert (Sv) which is one joule/kilogram (J/kg).  The effective dose in radiation is a measure of the cancer risk, solely due to all the radiation types and sources to a whole organism due to ionizing radiation delivered non-uniformly to part(s) of its body, while not per se factoring in other important (complex interactivity, chemical & biological factors, the latter of which is part of why cancer risks comparisons from fallout doses with Potassium are only theory, not reality-based).

For more details, see also these resources:

The science is clear, admits its known uncertainties, and keeps evolving, fine-tuning dosimetry as findings are incorporated.  Problem (sometimes) is that some scientists, government officials, amateur radiation monitoring enthusiasts and especially unquestioning reporters mix up the various ways to look at radiation (activity, absorbed dose, equivalent dose, effective dose) and simplify comparisons (examples below).  Nuclear physics + statistics + epidemiomoly +  biology + medicine + nutrition covers véry vast complex fields of study, and adjustments to the multidisciplinary understanding continue to be made to aspects of internal radiation dosimetry to help theoretical risk estimates better match epidemiological impact evidence, most of which is gathered over years and decades. (See examples, for instance, of changes made to carcinogenic potencies or risk coefficients for Sr-90 and other radionuclides in this March 2006 – California government – Strontium document, or this critique of the IRCP in favor of a more epidemiological modeling approach.  It easily gets murky in the reporting…

Couple examples of the range of confusion-causing reporting:

– Sometimes there’s exaggerating the effects of beta radiation:

As if the beta activity’s corresponding absorbed/equivalent dose were of gamma radiation, which would imply a much more severe effective dose. (See this New York Times example of such hyping up a (beta) surface hazard into a more lethal (gamma) hazard, well-debunked by Ex-SKF, here).

– Sometimes it is technically correct, but… it’s “cherry-picked” limited information, and what it actually means, especially in the bigger long-term health picture, is omitted, for instance:

National Geographic (NGO – August 7, 2013): “[…] Drinking water at 300 becquerels per liter would be approximately equivalent to one year’s exposure to natural background radiation, or 10 to 15 chest X-rays, according to the World Health Organization”,  meaning that CANCER RISK (for which “effective dose” is meant to be an assessment aid) of drinking water (for 1 year) containing “310 Bq/l Cs-134 + 650 Bq/l Cs-137 =  “one year’s exposure to natural background radiation“, or “10 to 15 chest-only X-rays“.

—> Couple things that are misleading about such a correct comparison of these 3 calculated effective doses for 1 year:  the analystical approach doesn’t incorporate the longer-term cumulative impact of some radionuclides getting lodged in some tissues.  For other isotopes than radiocesiums, and for specific organs (Strontium-90 lodged in bones, Plutonium-239 particles stuck in lungs, Iodine-131 & 132 concentrated in the Thyroid, etc.) the analytically derived ‘effective dose’ doesn’t always match the actual (more reality-based) biological and epidemiological evidence.  For instance, tissue damage from radioactive Iodine may only show up as cancers 20 years later, long after nearly all radioactivity of the Iodine decayed away.  Or, to steer my questioning in the other direction, one could point out that, “no statistically relevant increase of breast breast cancer could be found for multiple exposure to diagnostic X-rays for women under age 50, and thus claim the above-used comparison implies that all-year consumption of  960 Bq/l radioCeciums-contaminated water would have the same statistically irrelevant effect.

And yet, it is well-known that at low doses, such as from normal average background radiation, our cells repair the damage rapidly.  At higher doses, the cells might not be able to repair the damage, and the cells may either be changed permanently or die. Most cells that die are of little consequence, the body can just replace them.  Cells changed permanently may go on to produce abnormal cells when they divide. In the right circumstance, these cells may become cancerous. This is the origin of our increased risk in cancer, as a result of radiation exposure. [Idaho State Univ.].  Thus the comparison to “just an extra background radiation added” is a deceptive use of dose comparisons, albeit seemingly only slightly so.  Until we look at what fairly harmless “background radiation”, which in the US is estimated to add up to about “6200 microsieverts /year, (overall effective dose)”, actually means:  If all of Tokyo (35 million people) drank such water, it would kill at least 6,000 people per year from cancers alone:

To pick something from “background radiation doses”, take just the effects of Radon gas, which comprises not even half of averaged-out “natural background radiation effective dose”, has been attributed for the cause of 21,000 annual lung cancer deaths in the US (just caused by that aspect of natural background alone – see US EPA Citizens Guide to Radon], which, for a US total population of 314 million is 6.6878 lung cancer deaths per 100,000 inhabitants.  In other words, since “radon & thoron (background)” account for 37% [US EPA, Radiation: Facts, Risks and Realities], 100% of adding 1 additional “background radiation effective dose” to the existing background implies a quasi-certainty of killing (at the very least) 18 people per 100,000 inhabitants and causing an untold number of non-lethal cancers and unknown other health afflictions and complications.  Morale of the story: don’t drink the groundwater near the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant.

FYI:  That was 2011, the 2011 groundwater contamination of 310 Bq/l Cs-134 + 650 Bq/l Cs-137 since increased to 750,000,000Bq/l Cs-134  + 1,600,000,000 Bq/l Cs-137 in July 2013.  (They’re not suggesting you could practically drink it for a year anymore and be fine, “statistically speaking”, so now they’re back to comparing tiny doses of trace amounts in fish to bananas…).  Anyways, that was an example of CORRECT dose comparisons.

– The most common misreporting usually comes in a variation of presenting some absorbed/equivalent dose (such as from geiger Counter measurements, often in picoCurie or microSievert per hour, or in “Counts per Minute (CPM)”, showing an absorbed or equivalent dose at the distance from external radiation sources, which is often a very complex mixture of absorbed/equivalent doses from external sources), with a variety of equivalent and/or effective doses, both from external, internal and well-calculated total effective doses.  To make it even  less clear to some readers, on top of that, the comparisons  often mix doses that are  “per exposure” with “annual” doses and dose rates in “per hour”).   Classic example:

Take this piece of nuclear deception crap from PBS, “How much radiation is too much? A handy guide” (By Brianna Lee, March 22, 2011), which includes a commonly seen dose comparison overview table, supposed to put highly contaminated areas in the fallout zone of the Fukushima-Daiichi nuclear disaster region “in perspective”…   (click on above article link to see the whole bs  guide).   I added some comments to a small selection of it:

I scribbled a couple comments on this unbelievably pathetic comparison chart, which shows visual blocks of "doses", some per hour, some per exposure, some annual, some just absorbed dose, others well-calculated effective dose, and mixing in the ridiculous comparison with Potassium-40 for good measure... Nuclear propaganda at its most prevalent.  Click image to see the inserted Japan-Times graphic un-annotated.

This unbelievably pathetic comparison chart, which shows visual “easy to grasp” squares representing “doses” (where green is much more severe than blue), some heaps of blocks representing doses per hour, some per exposure, some annual, some referring to just absorbed/equivalent dose, others to well-calculated effective doses, and mixing in the ridiculous comparison with Potassium-40 for good measure…   Nuclear propaganda at its most prevalent. Click image to see the top-right inserted Japan-Times graphic un-annotated to see how low absorbed/equivalent dose rates several feet above the ground can be in significant fallout ground deposition areas.  For unaltered complete chart, see last link above.

PBS‘s own commentary is also packed with common nuclear deceptions.  To pick just two more examples that stood out right away, in the text after the chart:

“A person living within 50 miles of a nuclear power plant absorbs 0.09 microsieverts of radiation per year, which is less than the amount absorbed by eating a banana.”

–> Nuclear power plant emissions include Tritium, and trace amounts of Cesium-137, Strontium-90, etc.  Clues about the ACTUAL likely effect of living near a non-leaking normal nuclear power plant is hinted at in studies such as, “Childhood leukemia around French nuclear power plants – the Geocap study, 2002-2007.” and “Childhood Leukemia in Germany: Cluster Identified near Nuclear Power Plant” (After which of course government studies were done that found “no such evidence”…).  More obviously exposing this particular deception is how the nuclear banana psycho-babble, contrasts with the net effect of an average 4.7 g of Potassium per day in your diet is ACTUALLY better health and less cancer.

“spending a day in a town near the Fukushima plant will expose a person to an extra 3.5 microsieverts of radiation – slightly less than that of a dental X-ray.”

—> 3.5 µSv/day = 0.1458 µSv/hr = absorbed/equivalent external radiation dose at the point of measurement, in this case in a context that includes wading through a fallout dust cloud that at that time contained considerable Iodine-131 and radioCesiums (deposition in the area was over 1,000,000 Bq/m^2 for each, near Fukushima City in March 2011, hazardous levels that were in fact designated ‘mandatory evacuation’ areas (!) near Chernobyl, Ukraine in 1986).   Sure, “objectively”, utterly removed from an acutely relevant context, yes, a purely theoretical context-omitted “0.1458 µSv/hr equivalent dose” is very low as an equivalent dose, something one can incur from various natural external sources, including some x-rays, with negligible adverse health effects; that’s true.  Yet merely stating some absorbed/equivalent dose (a la a Geiger Counter measurement) in a highly contaminated area, while not even mentioning the situational context, which comes with cumulative long-term health risks from sustained internal exposure to a large variety of manmade radionuclides (through both inhalation of contaminated air and through ingestion of contaminated food), is highly deceptive.

And the risks are known to be significantly higher for children as well.  (See also Reuters, Oct 25, 2013, excerpt: “Children were found to be more sensitive than adults for the development of 25 percent of tumor types including leukemia, and thyroid, brain and breast cancer […]  “The risk can be significantly higher, depending on circumstances,” the United Nations Scientific Committee on the Effects of Atomic Radiation (UNSCEAR) added in a statement.“)

Such comparisons of a simple absorbed/equivalent dose rate with an effective X-ray dose of only 1.0 µSv per exposure, while ignoring the hazardous fallout context one is actually referring to is, is an example of “dose deception.”  (It is an aspect embedded in this particular type of deception that is further explained in the rest of this blogpost.)  

The experts know the dose-type differences very well, which hints at either “nuclear experts” maybe not being what they claim to be, or the deception being intentional.  (See also the book (free download), The Primer in the Art of Deception: The Cult of Nuclearists, Uranium Weapons and Fraudulent Science.” by Paul Zimmerman.

NOTE: I mix up “absorbed” and “equivalent” doses myself sometimes, but when speaking about measured external doses for human beings, there’s no quantitative difference (both in Joule per kilogram, yet expressed as either Gray or Sievert).  See more also on my Radiation Units & Conversions page.   An “Absorbed Dose” is quantitatively the same as its “Equivalent Dose” when one is dealing with the same type of purely external radiation and for their impact on matter (human tissue), and AS SUCH absorbed dose and equivalent dose can be easily confused without actually causing problems.  Geiger counters provide equivalent doses for external radiation on humans.  Technically, ‘Effective Doses’ are the best to compare, but to calculate them many factors need to be known that aren’t always known.

Thus, to refer to the title of this blogpost, to say that 0.20 µSv/hr (from fallout) can be far more dangerous than 2.00 µSv/hr (from cosmic rays) would be incorrect IF, and only if, the comparison was between two doses of the same type.

As the examples have illustrated, what is actually ridiculous is comparing one type of “a dose” or dose rate (a Geiger Counter measurement is the perfect example), showing just an absorbed or equivalent dose, often stated as a dose rate (per hour usually)… with a very different type of “a dose“, not meaning an absorbed or equivalent dose, but an effective dose.

As such “the dose deception” I’m referring to enables pro-nuclear apologists to make people belief that some official monitor’s absorbed/equivalent dose 4 feet above extremely fallout-contaminated ground would somehow show what the actual effective dose might be for a baby born & raised in such a radioactively contaminated area.  Absurd of course, but proving it would be difficult, ’cause such epidemiological data doesn’t exist (yet) (Japan’s “working on it…), mainly ’cause generally people love their kids more than that they believe the see-through bullshit from pro-nuclear psychopaths, and flee.  Anyways…   (For evidence of what happens to people living in areas with a deposition of Cesium-137 @ 100,000 Bq/m^2, see this Post-Chernobyl Swedish Study)

[Jan 25, 2014 note: the rest of this blogpost was mostly left the same,
except for a few edits for increased clarity]

Disclaimer:  I’m not an expert.  
(Just educating myself and sharing.)  

For starters, let’s have a look at a chart that mixes several different ways of getting exposed to radiation: from a distant source (radiation, but not the radiation-emitting source is moving through the body (airplane flight, CAT scan, living in a stone building, etc); an emitting radiation source is moving through the body (banana, smoking, inhaled or ingested fallout in food, water or air; radioisotope tracers for certain medical scans,…); and  a combination is likely, but dose rates are a mixture of absorbed or equivalent, and some effective doses, generally for the externally received dose (time spent at nuclear contaminated zone (Chernobyl, Three Mile Island, Fukushima,…), living in some normal background radiation, etc; and possibly others, ignoring effects from inhaled or ingested fallout.  I already pointed this out in 2011 (here, for example), without explaining the differences, they usually appear all combined on a chart like this:

Most radiation data presented is for GAMMA ray exposure, but in some cases i can be a mixture, including ALPHA and BETA as well.  The inserted 1,800,000 µSv/hr dose is almost entire BETA rays, for instance.  Click to read TEPCO's press release trying to explain that.  And this is part of why 'dose rate' is so handy to deceive.  A dose from contaminated water may seem bad, but usually they can downplay it with a comparison.  If you were to drink it, however, it would be a whole other thing (see below); and the beta-emitters, like Strontium-90, wouldn't be a 'good news' disclaimer at all.

Highest radiation at the bottom of chart.  (Psychologically counter-intuitive presentations are common in this industry: it welcomes anything that can cause undetected confusion).  Most radiation data presented is for GAMMA ray exposure, but in some cases it can be a mixture, including ALPHA and BETA as well.   The inserted 1,800,000 µSv/hr dose is almost entirely BETA rays, for instance. Click image to read TEPCO’s press release about that.  This is part of why ‘dose rate’ is so handy to deceive with:  A dose from contaminated water may seem bad, but usually can be downplayed with a comparison to something non-source-ingestable.  If you were to drink it, however, it would be a whole other thing (see below); and serious beta-emitters, like Strontium-90, wouldn’t be a ‘good news’ disclaimer at all, as its link to bone cancer and leukemia is well-established.  Un-annotated source of chart:  http://www.informationisbeautiful.net/visualizations/radiation-dosage-chart/

  • The INVERSE SQUARE LAW

Not limited to gravity.  The below is an attempt to explain it for ionizing radiation.

I’m looking at an absorbed or equivalent dose rate, such as can be measured with a Geiger Counter: it is highly dependent on the distance from the emitting source. 

Imagine a gamma radiation source in the starting point (top left, next image below); its intensity  is of a certain value at a given distance (like a microsievert at a meter or yard or so):  four times LESS intense at double that distance, and 9 times at 3 times, and 16 times less intense at 4 times that distance, and 25 times at 5 times…  Or, moving towards the radiation source, let’s say from 10 inches to 1 inch,  the radiation intensifies 100-fold.

Any point source which spreads its influence equally in all directions without a limit to its range will obey the inverse square law. This comes from strictly geometrical considerations. The intensity of the influence at any given radius (r) is the source strength divided by the area of the sphere. Being strictly geometric in its origin, the inverse square law applies to diverse phenomena. Point sources of gravitational force, electric field, light, sound, and radiation obey the inverse square law.

Any point source which spreads its influence equally in all directions without a limit to its range will obey the inverse square law. This comes from strictly geometrical considerations. The intensity of the influence at any given radius (r) is the source strength divided by the area of the sphere. Being strictly geometric in its origin, the inverse square law applies to diverse phenomena. Point sources of gravitational force, electric field, light, sound, and radiation obey the inverse square law.

It boils down to this: the intensity of the radiation you receive is much higher the closer you get to the emitting source, and logarithmically so, with the distance being squared in the equation.  At double the distance, radiation is not half but four times as intense, and so on, as well as vice versa.

Theoretically, radiation intensity of the point at the point itself (distance =  “0”, or rather an infinitely small fraction below 0) is (theoretically) infinitely intense, but the inverse square law only applies to point sources, and falls apart once the distance of measurement is
smaller than the size of the source.  In any case, cells, or molecular DNA strands that come near such ionizing radiation emitting particles may sustain damage.  The reason some amount of radioactive material in the environment is generally not a big deal is because, at least for normal natural background radiation (Earth surface, but not at a Uranium mine or so), our body has ways to constantly heal the constantly occurring damage.

Regarding the the most common source of internal radiation exposure, see  also my (future) blogpost, Cs-137 versus K-40, which explains clearly why comparing fallout “to bananas” is utter nonsense.    Some foods reportedly can help prevent radiation damage through boosting these self-healing ways, mainly by increasing anti-oxidant levels.  For some suggestions on how to stay healthy in environments with elevated radioactive particle contents, see What You Should Be Doing NOW to Protect Yourself from Radiation’, by  Washington’ s Blog (November 10, 2013), and embedded links.

  • Field example with calculations:

Let’s say we have a background radiation from primarily very distant sources (like, a combination of mainly cosmic rays bombarding the Earth from outer space), of 0.105 µSv/hr (microSievert per hour, see my Radiation Units page).  (Not included in the calculation, but mentioned here for completeness: small amounts of  various natural radioactive elements, such as carcinogenic Radon gas, may also contribute to a location’s natural “background radiation” dose rate.)

Now, add a package of Japanese Kelp, harvested far north of Fukushima on the Hokkaido coast; (in this example, the seaweed was bought in the city of Nara (Nara Prefecture), Japan, on November 22, 2013) up to the same measuring device, let’s say at 1 millimeter (it’s various distances, but then it gets too complicated for this purpose), and, “let’s say…”, this adds about 0.2 µSv/hr, then this new 0.305 µSv/hr is not about “3 times as bad” as the 0.105 µSv/hr.  The dose may be about 3 times more, but that hides the fact that when one ingests such seaweed that some cells may get FAR  more dangerous levels of (potentially harmful) radiation.   Let’s see how much more…  (VERY IMPORTANT added note:  Although I have proven that the radiation from my Japanese seaweeds is due to exceptionally high natural and healthy potassium levels, which benefits out-do the harmful effects of the radiation from its inherent K-40 levels so much that the net result is actually cancer-fighting, something completely missed by mere dose comparisons as well.  For this exercise, I assumed (erroneously, but that doesn’t change the illustration’s point) the radiation to be from man-made isotopes like Cesium-137.)

But first the reason I’m bringing this up in the first place.  Watch Australia-ABC’s North Asia Correspondent Mark Willacy latest:

Recommended short ducumentary news report.  Note that the reporter did not even wear a dust mask when entering the no-go zone (as if he doesn't know the reason he's also wearing a cover-all suit is to keep the radioactive dus off his body...).  Very touching sad report.  CLick image to watch.

Random screenshot from a must-see short ABC-Australia documentary news report. Note that the reporter did not even wear a dust mask when entering the no-go zone, as if not clear on the reason he wás wearing a cover-all suit: to keep the radioactive dust off his body….  Anyhow:  Very touching sad report. Recommended.  (h/t mom)   Click image to watch.

(Side-rant: pondering anecdotal evidence and limited statistical evidence:  Related to this, consider the following: Why does child leukemia shows up in statistically relevant numbers near nuclear power plants?  Most likely ’cause tiny minuscule amounts of radioactive dust’ is infrequently being released as part of routine operations.  These releases are so small, however, they appear irrelevant on radiation monitors, as they can not even be differentiated from changes in cosmic rays, except in the rare case air filters in the area are lab-analyzed for radionuclides.   And yet, in a couple miles radius around even “totally safe” and supposedly “not leaking” accident-free nuclear power plants, the incidence of leukemia has been found to be higher, statistically relevantly more, according to some studies.  This is one of numerous examples that illustrate that the (old-school) analytical distant-source-based health effects model (ICRP), still used in the nulcear industry (in 2013 at least), is flawed.

See these studies from Germany and France (which I mentioned before, here) or the study I mentioned in my blogpost Visit to Fukushima, from the contamination effect’s seen along the Irish Sea in the UK.  Now we’re dealing with radioactive particle releases that DO show up, very obviously and sometimes alarmingly, on radiation monitors.  Even with a simple Geiger Counter, I was able to find ground hotspots measuring over 3.0 µSv/hr in unevacuated “nothing-happened” Iwaki, Fukushima Prefecture.  They’re told that just ‘smiling’ renders radiation harmless…)

Okay, back to the calculation example to illustrate the INVERSE SQUARE LAW for ionizing radiation…

I’ll illustrate the example, see a calculation, further below.

WHen holding a MedCom Geiger Counter to a package of Kelp seaweed, the measurement jumped to more than double  the store's natural background gamma radiation (which ranged 0.037 µSv/hr to 0.163 µSv/hr, averaging just below 0.100 µSv/hr - observed over 10 minutes of walking around).  Store downtown Nara (east of Osaka, Japan), over 500 miles from Fukushima.  Photo: November 22, 2013 by © Michaël Van Broekhoven, 2013.Holding a MedCom Geiger Counter to a package of Kelp seaweed, the measurement jumped to more than double the store’s natural background gamma radiation (which ranged 0.037 µSv/hr to 0.163 µSv/hr, averaging around 0.100 µSv/hr – observed over 10 minutes of walking around).  Store downtown Nara (east of Osaka, Japan), over 500 miles from Fukushima.  The sale of similarly radioactive seaweed is WIDESPREAD and appears to go  unmonitored/unaddressed.  (But, important notice: I had lab tests done and found out it is due to high potassium content, not due to Fukushima fallout!!!)   Photo: Nara, Japan, November 22, 2013 by © Michaël Van Broekhoven, 2013.

You can easily get a much higher dose rate than 0.305 µSv/hr at higher altitude, from (distant) cosmic rays, and that would truly be nothing to worry about.  That extra 0.2 µSv/hr from an absorbable/ingestable particle, however, is, in this example case, from a series of localized radioactive particles, that can make contact with the cells it passes by, or the tissue it may end up in.  Depending on the particle’s decay, this can be no problem (as is the case with Potasium-40, to which the body is accustomed), or pose grave health risks, especially over a period of continued exposure (as is the case with Iodine-131, Cesium-137, Strontium-90, etc.).

There are (very complicated) formulas estimating the overall dose a body receives from such a tiny radioacive gamma-ray (or alpha or beta, or a combination thereof, depending on the radioactive isoptope) emitting source, how long how much of it is expected to remain in one’s body etc.  The key piece is hidden in the explanation to the public, though:  the closer to the emitting source, the more intense the radiation received right there.  Calculating the overall risk (with various built-in assumptions based on observed or extrapolated likely effects of various types of radiation on tissues, etc.) to create some “dose” for the whole body, to be compared to other “doses”, from non-ingested/inhaled internal sources, simply isn’t honest as far as the actual health risks go.  The examples in the introduction pointed that out already.

For the calculation example:  We’re looking at Equivalent dose rates here, as measured with a Geiger Counter.   Let’s say the extra 0.2 µSv/hr comes from 1 location in the seaweed, and from just 1 isotope, let’s say cesium-137 (cs-137 for short).  It’s more likely to be a bit spread out throughout and a combination of isotopes, but for the point I’m making, this simplified example will do.  So, example parameters: An amount (‘x’) of Cs-137 is measuring an hourly (equivalent) dose rate of 0.2 µSv/hr, at a distance 1 millimeter (0.1 cm or 0.0001 meter).  I’ll use the Rad Pro Calculator included on my Radiation Units page:

Annotated screenshot from http://www.radprocalculator.com  See my Radiation Units page for more.

Annotated screenshot from http://www.radprocalculator.com See my Radiation Units page for more.

This is for “in air”, so the actual radio-activity is likely slightly higher.

For future example calculations (below), I’ll round it up to “3 Bq of Cs-137” (for that part of the tested seaweed).

Given the contamination in the seaweeds is fairly consistent through the packages (when placing the Geiger Counter on different parts of the package, that is), let’s say that is per square centimeter, and a package is 10 cm by 10 cm (100 cm^2), then -if this assumption holds up – there would be some 3000 Bq of Cs-137 in such a package of seaweed, which weighs way less than a kilogram, say about 200 grams.  IF SO (big if until tested in a lab), then the contamination level could be around 15,000 Bq/kg (of Cesium or combination of radioactive fission materials)  Food maximum allowable level is 100 Bq for Cs-137.   How much is ACTUALLY in such a package of Fukushima-contaminated seaweed?  That would require lab tests.  

So, the distance at which 3 Bq of Cs-137 would give a 0.2 µSv/hr dose rate is barely different than the 0.100 cm I started out with:  0.107 cm

At 1/10th of a millimeter (0.01 cm), the same 3 Bq of Cs-137 particles would measure a dose rate of  22.9 µSv/hr   Screenshots from using the RadPro Calculator again:

RadPro3

RadPro4

And at a distance of a mere 1 micrometer (0.0001 cm), a distance in internal biology that could be considered “about upon contact“, the radiation dose rate (carcinogenic-potential ‘intensity’), right there, is (using this Scientific Notation To Decimal Notation Converter):  229,229.4 µSv/hr (equivalent dose at that distance).  

NUANCE ADDED:   The Inverse Square Law’s precise MATH is, however NOT useable to get precise quantifyable results for INTERNAL EXPOSURES.  It gives an idea in principle, but due to the fact, pointed out at the beginning of this blog (and with some additional perspectives added in comments), the inverse square law only applies to point sources, and falls apart once the distance of measurement is smaller than the size of the source; as well as issues of shielding interfering with the math.  !–> Therefor, these calculations are only suggestive, not to be taken for quantified precision.

RadPro5

So when you test food with a Geiger Counter, and you see it jump about 0.2 µSv/hr through the packaging, or a whopping 0.8 µSv/hr total from some seaweed sold in Iwaki, Fukushima Prefecture, you can’t actually honestly compare that to an X-ray (50 µSv/each or an airplane flight.  In the case of those, the emitting source is distant, meaning there aren’t any cell walls or DNA that get far higher radiation levels than the Geiger Counter measurement suggests, bound to do cell damage, depending on the type of particle.  Our bodies can repair much, but when the levels get too high all too often, as they are in fallout zones, it’s not surprising to see negative health effects already showing up.  And if one were to compare the equivalent dose shown by a Geiger Counter with the equivalt dose of eating

IF the 0.8µSv/hr-measuring Kelp translates to “a local food-hotspot” of about 10 Bq of Cs-137, then that same 10 Bq would measure hundreds to many thousands of times more at just a micrometer distance.  The concentration of the radioactive contamination could be well over 1000 Bq/kg.  (NOTE:  in case of the seaweeds I had tested, the radiation source turned out to be relatively harmless potassium, at thousands of Bq/kg, see Lab Results Summary; If the cause would have been from cesium and strontium, the example used would not have been fit for consumption.)

Our bodies are amazing that we can handle thousands of tiny radioactive particles flowing through us with very little health effects, constantly repairing damages.  When we add a whole bunch of manmade radioactive fallout to our system, however… it gets harder and harder to keep up with the harm this does.  Some estimates put the effects of Chernobyl at nearly a million premature deaths, mainly by cancers.  

SUMMARY:   Speaking in terms of equivalent doses, the radiation dose right by the radioactive particle(s), practically ‘on contact’, at 1 micrometer, would be a million times higher than at 1 millimeter.   Thát is one of the main reasons fallout is WAY more dangerous than radiation from distant sources, like cosmic rays received in airplanes.

In addition, my impression (and at this point this is merely a suspicion) is that he long-term cumulative effect of ingested or inhaled fallout of a mixture of various manmade radionuclides is being downplayed in the modeling that underpin the effective dose calculation.

The conclusion is that nuclear accident reporting, with its typical comparisons of various types of doses, as found throughout the news media is often packed with nuclear industry deceptions.  Reporters ought to use more discernment and expose the nuclear industry tricks instead of parroting its vileness.

>>> Please leave a comment if you spot an error
(or if you found this somehow helpful)  <<<

Jan. 8, 2014: Important disclaimer:  The seaweed shown may be slightly radioactive due to naturally occurring radioisotopes.  I have sent samples of similarly radioactive seaweeds to a lab for analysis to determine if the elevated levels are natural or from contamination.   !–> Jan 20, 2014:  It was almost entirely from natural and healthy high Potassium content.  !!!–>  See my own Lab data of “radioactive food” bought in Japan: not what I expected:  Summary @ http://wp.me/puwO9-2rz

[Last edits made to improve upon this blogpost: Feb. 27, 2014]

Advertisements
This entry was posted in Politics. Bookmark the permalink.

41 Responses to The Dose Deception – Why 0.20 µSv/hr (from fallout) can be far more dangerous than 2.00 µSv/hr (from cosmic rays). The inverse square law for ionizing radiation illustrated.

  1. Pingback: Medcom Geiger Counter Measurements in Southern Colorado – Dec. 2014 Notes. | Not All Alleged Is Apparent…

  2. Pingback: Zaporizhia / Zaporozhye NPP Update: Russian Mainstream Media begins to wonder too | Not All Alleged Is Apparent…

  3. Keith Welch says:

    Dear. Mr. Broekhoven. I read your article with interest. I came across your site because I noticed that you had dealt with the extreme mistreatment of data and fearmongering of M. Collins, the so-called “Enviroreporter” and I applaud your desire to use defensible approaches and avoid hype. However, in my view you seem to invoke a rather hostile bias toward the nuclear industry, accusing it of an overarching deception, which in my opinion is not warranted. It is of course your right to be anti-nuclear. But what seems incongruous to me among anti-nukes is the willingness they have to cherry pick information that comes from the nuclear industry. In some cases, you use the information to support your arguments, but then in others you dismiss the “industry” as being deceptive and having a “propaganda machine”. It seems to me that if you are going to use the nuclear industry’s expertise, it is disingenuous to then malign those who provide this expertise. To a person, the people I have encountered in my 30+ years working in health physics have been of high integrity; honest, caring, concerned about the exact same things as anyone else – the health of their children, the planet, etc. In other words, I simply reject the oft-repeated accusation of the anti-nuclear community that there is some sort of deception lying at the heart of the nuclear industry as a kind of paranoia born on ignorance of most of the public of things nuclear. We in the industry have done a terrible job of actually educating the public (most of that is our fault, but the anti-nuclear camp is also quick to accuse us of trying to deceive people when we make honest efforts to educate). We are in a catch-22.
    At any rate, I wanted to comment on this essay you wrote. Again, I applaud your efforts to analyze data in a meaningful, quantitative way, and to make a real effort to learn more about radiation and nuclear technology, and your willingness to acknowledge when you don’t know things or can’t prove things. You sound like a reasonable person. But this piece has some conceptual flaws in it that lead you to inaccurate conclusions. I hope you will read my comments with an open mind; my intent here is an honest effort to assist with factual information to help you continue to gain knowledge in this area.
    You are right: the terms, units and definitions in radiation are complex and confusing. But you should not jump to the conclusion that nuclear proponents use this complexity to intentionally deceive people. It is true that people often use inaccurate simplifications and analogies to attempt to communicate the magnitude or risk of various radiation doses, but this simplification is a way of communicating something quickly that would otherwise take so much time that no one would listen (look at your own essay, and my response to it; both are lengthy, but only barely scratch the surface regarding dose assessment). Generalizations and analogies are a necessary evil. A GOOD generalization is worth its weight in gold if it allows someone to reasonably approximate a risk or form a relatively accurate mental model. People in the nuclear industry are sometimes their own worst enemy because they are reticent to make generalizations or use analogies for fear of being accused of providing inaccurate information and trying to deceive (similar to how your essay comes across to me). All analogies and generalizations have their limits, and all are inaccurate at some level, but they are a vital tool in communications. Rather than accuse people who make them of intentional deception, I suggest it is better to make an honest attempt to grasp the essence of the intended communication. We may decide that the example or analogy given is a weak one. In my experience, it is better to then try to improve the analogy to bring it closer to accuracy, perhaps even educating those who made the original attempt.
    At any rate, in your claim that 0.2 uSv/h from fallout can be more dangerous than 2 uSv/h from cosmic rays you have mashed-up a number of conceptual issues that are indeed confusing, but in my view, you have made them even more confusing, and you’ve made some assertions that are not well supported. You are attempting to unravel the very complex world of internal dosimetry, but your approach is not technically sound.
    One of the most important issues touched on, with respect to general conceptual assertions, is a distinction between natural radioactivity and “artificial” sources. You imply that dose from naturally occurring radioactivity like potassium-40 is less harmful than dose from say, cesium-137. As you have pointed out, effective dose is really what matters, and the bottom line is that dose is dose, regardless of the source. If a person receives an effective dose of 1 mSv from K-40, it has EXACTLY the same potential risk as the same effective dose from Cs-137, or from any other radionuclide. That in fact is the whole intent of the concept of equivalent (or effective) dose. It normalizes the absorbed dose from any type, energy or distribution of radiation absorbed by the body to allow for a uniform way to express the risk. So, for instance, the average person receives somewhere in the range of 0.2 mSv per year effective dose from K-40 (internally). If one has an intake of Cs-137 that causes a 0.2 mSv effective dose, then the effect is exactly the same. More on this in a moment.

    Indeed, as Paracelsus said, it is the dose that makes the poison. Effective dose is what is important. When assessing dose from penetrating radiations from external sources, if the exposure is reasonably uniform, the effective dose can be relatively well estimated by measuring the dose directly with instruments or dosimeters. So for instance, standing in an area with a (properly) measured dose rate of 0.1 uSv/h for ten hours would result in an effective dose of 1 uSv. By the way, you gave examples of background radiation measurements that you attributed mostly to cosmic rays. You said small amounts of other sources contributed to the “background radiation dose rate”. In fact, other sources are just as important as cosmic radiation in the ambient reading on your Geiger counter. Depending on where you live, terrestrial radiation (radioactivity in the earth’s crust) accounts for something like half to 2/3 of the direct external radiation field to which you are exposed.

    Back to internal dose. The simplest appropriate way to assess doses from uptakes of radioactivity is to use the published internal dose conversion coefficients. Your attempt to estimate the dose rate to tissues at the cellular level using the inverse square law is not appropriate. But it is to your credit that you recognized that your estimate was a crude suggestion and not a quantification of dose. Again, effective dose is what’s important, and when it comes to intakes of activity, estimating the effective dose is done using internal dosimetry calculations, and the simplest way to approach this is with dose conversion coefficients. These are published by the ICRP. These conversion factors allow reasonably easy calculations to estimate effective dose from the intake of radioactivity. But like many dose-related factors (as you have pointed out), they have to be used with care, observing a number of nuances regarding the assumed conditions of exposure, chemical form of material, mode of intake, etc. But to take your example of 3 Bq of Cs-137, we can use the dose coefficients to estimate the dose. The conversion for uptake by members of the public is 1.3E-8 Sv/Bq (ICRP Pub 119). So an ingestion of 3 Bq of Cs-137 would give an effective dose of 0.039 microsievert (this is the total lifetime dose, but the way the definitions work, it is treated as if it all occurs in the year in which it is taken in). For reference, this is roughly the effective dose a person receives in an hour or so from cosmic radiation (depending on location). So your implication that intake of 3 Bq might cause a dose to internal tissues of more than 200,000 microsieverts per hour is GROSSLY exaggerated.
    Another big conceptual issue involves estimating cancer rates from small doses. It is absolutely unscientific to apply quantitative risk estimates to low doses, such as those received due to background radiation or typical occupational exposure, or doses received by Japanese residents in the vicinity of Fukushima (all three scenarios involve roughly similar effective doses) [when I say “roughly similar”, I mean doses within a factor of two or so, on average]. You engaged in this practice in your estimation that drinking water with 960 Bq/L of radiocesium would “kill at least 6000 people per year” from cancer. I’m not sure how you arrived at this estimate, but it is an entirely unscientific assessment. The scientific community dedicated to understanding radiation risk has made it clear in various technical documents and position statements. You referenced UNSCEAR in your essay. You should search their publications (http://www.unscear.org/unscear/en/publications.html) for their stand on risks of low-dose radiation, in particular, the practice of summing very small doses in very large populations, then using dose risk estimates that are valid only for larger individual doses and predicting cancer deaths in those low-dose populations. This is an invalid, unscientific approach, and UNSCEAR has made attempts to correct this practice, which has unfortunately become common. They say that they do “…not recommend multiplying very low doses by large numbers of individuals to estimate numbers of radiation-induced health effects within a population exposed to incremental doses at levels equivalent to or lower than natural background levels”. In other words, if a million people get a dose of 1 mSv, it is incorrect to apply a risk factor to this population by taking a cancer risk estimate per Sv and multiplying it by 1000 Sv to estimate number of deaths in this population. The cancer risk values per Sievert are derived from statistical studies of highly exposed people. Those risk values are tenuous at best for low-doses, and have never been observed in low-dose populations.
    (continued in next comment)

  4. Keith Welch says:

    So, for example, looking at your example of drinking 960 Bq/L, we can again assess the dose to such an individual using dose coefficients. Since this is consumption on a continuous basis, one has to make assumptions about rate of consumption, etc. A relatively straight-forward way (though it requires some conversions) to do this is with EPA’s drinking water dose standards. Using EPA’s conversions, a person would get about 1 microsievert per year from the continuous consumption of 0.18 Bq/L cesium-137 in drinking water. Alternately, we can say that one would receive 5.46 microsievert per Bq/L. Your example estimated a combination of Cs-137 and Cs-134. But to simplify it slightly, we can just assume it’s all Cs-137, which is a reasonable approximation for Cs-134. Therefore if we take 960 Bq/L of Cs-137 consumed for a year, we’d have about 5200 microsieverts per year, or 5.2 millisieverts. This is about the same as the typical effective dose from all sources of background (again depending on where you live). So going back to the UNSCEAR recommendation, we should not make any quantitative estimate regarding health impacts of such a dose. We cannot make a scientifically valid claim of any number of cancer deaths due to such a dose in some population. The reason is that this is in the range of background doses (which vary considerably worldwide) and an incremental change of a factor of two in this dose is within the natural variation. No quantifiable cancer induction or mortality risk can be estimated in a scientifically valid way from such dose. No substantiated studies have ever suggested that it can be. The error in the risk estimate is simply too large. These estimates of cancer risk at low doses come from unscientific extrapolations of cancer risk at high dose.
    Unfortunately, even the EPA has fallen in the trap of making such quantitative estimates. You quoted some values from the EPA for radon exposures. While highly exposed populations of people might fall into the category for which some estimate can be made, the average effective dose from radon is too small to be used this way. Radon is a somewhat unique in that the majority of the dose comes from alpha radiation which is a high “linear energy transfer” (LET) radiation. There is good evidence that alpha radiation is much more potent in causing radiation damage to tissue, but the effective dose takes this into account. Even so, I tend to agree that for highly exposed populations (say, parts of the population having effective doses from radon of over 50 millisievert per year), some quasi-quantitative cancer risk values might be applicable. But the epidemiology here is not certain, and errors are high.
    Related to this, I also noted your blog post about how “150 Bq Cs-137 is health-hazardous, while 150 Bq K-40 is RECOMMENDED for health”. This is really a very misleading premise, and it highlights several of the issues I mentioned about treating natural and artificial radiation as if they are different, and conflating the health benefits of potassium with the radiation emitted by K-40. One of the conceptual errors you make in this account (I have not read either of these essays in intricate detail, but I’ve highlighted the things that jumped out at me) is describing gamma radiation as “much more harmful” than beta. In fact, the weighting factors for converting absorbed dose to equivalent dose for beta and gamma are the same (unity). Also (and this is important), from an internal dosimetry standpoint, beta radiation carries more bang for the buck than gamma, because it is less penetrating. Yes, the fact that gammas are able to penetrate further in tissue makes it less potent. This effect spreads out the ionization, causing less local damage at the cellular level. From a dosimetric standpoint, the bulk of the dose caused by beta/gamma emitters like K-40 and Cs-137 comes from the beta radiation (much of the gamma radiation actually escapes the body).
    Yes, potassium is good for us. We need this trace mineral in our bodies. But that doesn’t “offset” the dose received, or render it somehow benign. If we assume that all radiation dose carries some potential harm with it, then we have to say that we’d be better off if we could somehow only consume K-39 and 41 and exclude K-40, and therefore avoid the dose that comes with it. In other words, if you are going to label Cs-137 as a carcinogen, then you MUST also label K-40 as one (and as we will see below, it is roughly as effective in this sense as Cs-137).
    But the bottom line is this: what is the dose from these two nuclides at the levels mentioned in your premise? First, none of the toxic effects you listed for Cs occur at levels of 150 Bq. The “radiation sickness” symptoms you mentioned only occur from extremely high acute exposures; it is extremely misleading to suggest that such effects could be associated with a tiny intake like 150 Bq. Cs is not terribly chemically toxic either. According to the CDC (www.atsdr.cdc.gov/toxprofiles/tp157-c3-2.pdf), it would be extremely difficult for a person to consume enough cesium to cause negative health effects from chemical toxicity (it would have to be done on purpose, by intentionally overdosing on the chemical). An intake of 150 Bq of Cs-137 amounts to a few hundredths of a nano-gram of the element; an exceedingly small amount (much too small to have any toxic effect). But, back to the question of dose.
    We can again make a direct comparison of the intake of K vs. Cs by using dose conversion coefficients. Again, using the ICRP data, the coefficient for Cs-137 is 1.3E-8 Sv/Bq. For K-40 it is 6.2E-9 Sv/Bq. So, we can see that cesium is just about twice as effective at causing dose as potassium. By the way, the factor of two effectiveness is largely due to the fact that cesium emits gamma rays at about eight times the rate of potassium (this again shows that gammas are relatively less effective at committing dose internally, since it takes almost an order of magnitude more gamma emission to double the dose).
    So, 150 Bq of Cs-137 would give us an effective dose of about 2 microsievert, whereas the same intake of K-40 results in about 1 microsievert. This is an apples-to-apples comparison; there is no need to attempt to apply confusing assumptions about the length of time the material will be in the body or any of that. This is the entire cumulative dose. Again, this is a tiny dose – at this level, there is really no distinction between these two doses. This is roughly the dose one gets from being alive for about a day (from cosmic/terrestrial radiation). Again, depending on where you live, your daily background dose might be a factor of two or three different than this (this in itself helps put into perspective the futility of trying to place an actual risk value on this level of exposure; it is, in the larger view, a negligible dose – regardless of the nuclide it comes from).
    I have written way more than I ever intended to, and I apologize for such a long comment. But I felt that your attempts to research and document what you have learned about radiation deserved a thoughtful, complete response. I’ve made this response as balanced as I can, and hopefully it does not come off in an inappropriate way. I’m compelled to mention my thoughts about the anti-nuclear camp’s tactics, but again, I hope you understand that I’m trying to avoid taking pot-shots, and instead trying to convey my honest opinions in hopefully a non-hostile way. The two sides of this discussion desperately need to have more honest, respectful exchanges, free of shrill accusations and hype. My hope is learn more about what motivates anti-nuclear sentiments, and to share my views with such folks in a way that is not hostile, but can perhaps illuminate areas where there is altogether too much misinformation.
    Best regards. Keith

  5. Dear Keith, Thank you for your comments. I will need to comb through them and identify the points which might call for making changes (for accuracy, nuance or to remove an error. On the Beta dangers, I’m already sure you’re right. At first glance it looks like a couple points sound quite valid, and I need to look into it and address that as needed. A couple others… hm… not so sure, could make for interesting conversation on the topic. This week’s full of plans, so this could take days, weeks, I don’t know… But I will check your input and make changes where I feel it’s called for (and for those cases, I will then point out here in comments what I changed.)

    I can’t speak for “the anti-nuclear” camp as a camp, but I’ll see what I can do to clarify my impressions of the nuclear industry being prone to deception.

    I very much appreciate you took the time to read through my attempt to make sense of it all. I’ll be in touch when I get to where I have questions.

    Kind Regards,

    Michaël VB

    [As of Jan. 2, 2015 4am, I have yet to make edits.]
    (PS: As per your 3rd message, I replaced the paragraph in your first “comment with typos” with the one you preferred.)

  6. Keith Welch says:

    Michael, I am interested in your reactions and response to my thoughts, but I would appreciate rather than correcting things you believe to be erroneous, that you would instead question my assertions, and allow me to amplify or correct them myself. I certainly admit fallibility, but I’d be interested to know what you believe the errors are before simply “correcting” them (which may generate a lot of lost time on both our parts). In other words, I just want my words to remain mine, without editorial changes that might change the meaning of what I have said. If, by “correction”, you mean to provide an argument in opposition to a comment, I welcome that. As you mentioned, these items deserve an “interesting conversation”, and perhaps that exchange would be helpful for both of us. Thank you for making the editorial correction to my typo.

  7. Hi Keith,

    Alright, when I get to it, I will share my thoughts here before making corrections in the blogpost itself. Some loose first thoughts:

    Thing is that to really get the answer *correct* to some of these issues, we’d have to become experts ánd probably innovators in radiation dosimetry ourselves. I have no ambition to read up on all the intricacies and math involved to get there, at least not this month. ;-) I agree that even my blogpost is a generalization, but it broadens the understanding of “dose”, so that the ignorance about its different types, which “experts” frequently mix when making comparisons can be seen for what they are: not just a little generalization issue, but actually totally unscientific. And when those “generalizations” or “mistakes” are systematically making man-made radioactive fallout sound “as harmless as eating bananas, living at higher altitude, taking a plane, etc”, then it comes across as deception: knowingly misleading the public, as part of a pro-nuclear industry-biased public relations campaign.

    To give an example, I’ve become skeptical of UNSCEAR over the years, first because how they ignored statistical field data (such as documented in Yablokov 2009’s work, “Chernobyl – Consequences of the Catastrophe for People and the Environment” @ http://www.tucradio.org/Yablokov_Chernobylbook.pdf ), as well as a Swedisch cancer study (http://jech.bmj.com/content/58/12/1011.short), in regards to Chernobyl, to name a few. (The documentary Chernobyl Heart ads another angle ignored by nuclear apologists: http://topdocumentaryfilms.com/chernobyl-heart/ ). And recently (2014) they’ve further ruined their reputation (imo) by making Fukushima sound like it’s nothing to be concerned about. I share much of the critical points raised in this document that goes into the shortcomings of the latest UNSCEAR propaganda: http://www.fukushima-disaster.de/fileadmin/user_upload/pdf/english/Akzente_Unscear2014.pdf

    I’m trying to focus on other things, but I will go over the many points you raised and see what may need to be adjusted, or where I may try to explain myself better. As for the Cs-137 vs K40 issue, read my blogpost again ( http://wp.me/puwO9-2sk ); my words are carefully weighted in it and you have to read the whole, not just an excerpt to see how comparisons of fallout to Potassium-containing food are truly deceptive.

    Happy New Year, by the way. – Mvb

  8. Keith Welch says:

    Happy new year to you also Michael (I wish I was smart enough to know how to insert an umlaut). And, before I forget, I have really enjoyed your photographs, they are absolutely beautiful. The vistas in your neck of the woods are stunning, especially for someone who lives in an area where the horizon is generally a few hundred meters away. Unfortunately for you, I’ve got some time off from work, and have time on my hands to ramble a little (sorry). A few thoughts about your last note…

    I use the term “expert” carefully, but, by most standards, I am considered an expert in radiation. I’ve worked in radiation protection for over thirty years (some of that time in the commercial “nuclear industry”), and I have a Masters degree in health physics (radiation protection). So, that makes me a radiation safety “professional”. But, like most professional areas, once you enter the profession and see the broader scope within it, you realize just how specialized it is and how expertise can be taken to new levels. For instance, I know enough about internal dosimetry to know the difference between a technically sound approach and unsound approaches, and to make reasonable estimates of dose from uptakes of radioactivity. But there are many people whose entire career may be spent studying and teaching about the dosimetry of a single radioisotope; how it behaves in the body; how to accurately assess doses from internal deposition, etc. So, by comparison, I am a generalist, or more accurately, an “operational” radiation safety expert. Now, to many who are opposed to nuclear power, that in itself somehow disqualifies me from being trusted (because my line of work is connected to the nuclear industry). This is of great frustration to me, because I can’t make sense of it. To me, it’s as if you were going to host a forum for car enthusiasts, and a Carroll Shelby dropped in to make comments, and everyone shunned him because he was an “insider” or a “shill” for the car industry. I know, the context is different (those analogies again…). But, the point is that there are a whole bunch of laypeople people running around striving and groping to understand things nuclear, but they almost always refuse to regard information from the actual experts on the subject as trustworthy. You have no idea how frustrating this is to the thousands of good people who have dedicated their lives to careers in radiation and nuclear safety to have the public reject them this way. These folk don’t seem to think about the fact that they routinely trust their lives to people in this profession, when for instance, they might need to receive diagnostic or therapeutic radiation exposures. The health physics profession is dedicated to helping and protecting people, not deceiving them.
    By the way, at the time I started my career in radiation protection in 1981, I was mildly anti-nuclear, but had no real understanding of things nuclear. My negative views were based on the little I knew about TMI and the nuclear weapons legacy. But I began to learn about the science of health physics, and came to realize that this field was as legitimate and robust as any in physics. I began to (and continue to) see it this way; that there may any number of arguments against nuclear power (some more valid than others), but the notion that the radiation protection profession is either intentionally attempting to deceive the public, or by its ineptitude is somehow ignorant of the “true dangers” of radiation, is impossible for me to give any credence to. Asking me to allow for this would be like asking an airplane pilot to deny the Bernoulli principle. In other words, I believe that the state of the art of health physics is trustworthy.

    To your point about experts making “man-made radioactive fallout sound “as harmless as eating bananas, living at higher altitude, taking a plane, etc”,”. I can understand how, in the context of accidents and contentious questions about nuclear safety, you may feel that you are being patronized or condescended to when told “it’s as safe as eating bananas”. Folks who make such comparisons are trying to simplify the complex and use everyday examples to describe the risks in general terms. But many times, it is done improperly.

    But there are a couple “hitches” here. The first is that the generalizations go both ways. For instance, in your comment I quoted above, you point to the “poor” generalization of “eating bananas” etc. You’re right, this is a poor generalization because it is non-quantitative (how many bananas, how many plane flights?). But, on the flip side, your comparison to “radioactive fallout” is also a poor generalization for the same reason – it is vague and non-quantitative. We must quantify the dose in both cases. The conceptual error you are at risk of making is this: assuming that “man-made” radioactivity, in general, is always “bad”, and “natural” exposure is relatively harmless. This is simply an untrue premise, but it seems to be at the base of much of the anti-nuclear argument. Dose is dose, and it is the dose that makes the poison. This goes back to what I mentioned about Paracelsus. If you’re not familiar with him, his concept of “the dose makes the poison” underlies all modern pharmacology. More accurately, the concept he pioneered was that all things are poisons in some quantity, and that what matters for determining the relative harm is the dose which is received. Harm comes not from “mere exposure” (e.g. “living near a reactor”, “eating kelp”, “being Japanese”), but from *dose*. The question is – always – what is the dose received?

    The concept can even be extended to hormesis (in which small doses are therapeutic and large doses harmful): taking a few hundred milligrams of an anti-inflamatory can actually be *good* for us, but consuming too much makes it poisonous (I’m not making any claims to radiation hormesis here, just the general concept, which is well known to be valid). Anyway, my point is that we must compare apples to apples if we want to make our analogies reasonable. Our examples need to have as much specificity in them as we can reasonably get. To me, this means comparing effective doses, to the extent practical (which is admittedly sometimes not simple). So, we’d have to be more specific about the amount of fallout, what the actual dose is from it, and again, how many bananas, etc., for a comparison like the one you mentioned to be meaningful. This brings me to the second “hitch”. As simplistic as they may sound, in many cases, if properly quantified, such comparisons can be useful and reasonably accurate. The concept of the “banana equivalent dose” has been scoffed at, but if treated properly, can be used to at least crudely compare doses.

    Perhaps more quantitative is the comparison to high altitude flight you mentioned. Effective dose from cosmic ray exposure during air travel can be accurately assessed. The dose rate can vary, but on average, it runs “a few” uSv/h (let’s say roughly 3). The convenient thing about this source is that it is a uniform, external dose, and therefore converts essentially directly to effective dose. So, a three or four hour flight results in say 10 uSv. We should keep in mind that in that three or four hours, we would have gotten some dose from cosmics even at sea level, but about fifty to 100 times less, so for a rough estimate like this, that can be neglected. A number of good studies of flight crew dose have been done, and the average doses run a little over 2 mSv/y. So the trick is, when we compare this to “man-made radioactive fallout”, we need to be just as specific in the dose estimate for someone exposed to that fallout.

    I wish I knew how to insert graphics in my comments, but I don’t. Perhaps you’ve read UNSCEAR’s reports on Fukushima, but as an example, I’d point to their comprehensive report located here: http://www.unscear.org/unscear/en/fukushima.html. Excerpted from the 2013 report (Chapter III page 9), “Adults living in the city of Fukushima were estimated to have received, on average, an effective dose of about 4 mSv in the first year following the accident…”, and “Lifetime effective doses (resulting from the accident) that, on average, could be received by those continuing to live in the Fukushima Prefecture have been estimated to be just over 10 mSv…”. The report acknowledges these are averages, and has dose estimates for various sub-populations, etc., and goes into greater detail among its 300+ pages; this is just a summary. Now, let’s suspend (at least for the moment) our notions of conspiracies or the ineptitude of UNSCEAR; for now, let’s just assume that the folks who did these studies are dedicated experts who pay attention to details, made scientifically-based decisions and judgments regarding which data to use in the analysis, and are more likely than just about anyone to get the dose estimate about right (certainly a better chance than me or you). What then could we say about airline flights and Fukushima? If we compare dose to dose, we could say that a person living in Fukushima on average got about twice the dose of a typical airline pilot in the first year after the accident. So here is what sounds like a simplistic comparison, but it is actually a reasonably good one (at least, in my view).

    In the broader context of background, we can say that this dose is within the range of normal global *natural* background dose (which is around 2.4 mSv/y on average, and varies from around 1 to upwards of 20 mSv/y depending on the population group). The above is a reasonable way (in my humble, semi-expert view) to make a dose comparison. If it is not a reasonable comparison, then I am at a loss as to a better way to make one.

    Further, if this is not a reasonable approximation, I would then question whether there is any way to make a reasonable estimate about most any hazard, because these estimates represent the state of the art, and health physics is a reasonably mature science.

    Could UNSCEAR be off? Could this be in error? Yes, but by how much? For their part, they say that built into their estimates are a number of conservative assumptions, which generally cause overestimations. If it’s off (low) by a factor of ten, how significant is that? That would mean a 40 mSv first-year dose and 100 mSv lifetime dose to people in the Prefecture (and much less to those further away). How dangerous is that? Not to oversimplify (but in trying to keep this from becoming a book), based on everything we’ve learned about radiation hazards over the last hundred years, this is not what is considered a “dangerous” dose. It is just beginning to approach the level at which one can make a quantitative risk assessment – it would potentially raise one’s risk of dying from cancer by one half of one percent (at this level, this is a tenuous connection, with significant error).

    By the way, don’t take my word for these numbers, they are all in various publications of the ICRP, UNSCEAR, and BEIR (National Academies) reports, etc. For another comparison, for what it’s worth, on a personal level, my lifetime dose is around 35 mSv, which is pretty low compared to the dose limits (occupational limit is 50 mSv/y in the U.S.), but is likely to be higher than a typical person who lives in Fukushima. Am I at a significantly increased risk for cancer? Based on my understanding of health physics, I don’t believe so.

    Now, you mentioned being somewhat skeptical of UNSCEAR. You even called their report “propaganda”. I suppose it is dealing with this sort of view that I find it most difficult to find common ground with anti-nuclear folks. UNSCEAR might have it wrong. But I’m not going to fall into a mindset that they “must” have it wrong, because their results aren’t what I expected, or because I just can’t trust them on general principle (yes, I’ve seen lots of the chatter out there about how UNSCEAR must be in collusion with TEPCO and Japanese authorities, etc., etc.). I won’t attempt to argue on a point by point basis in order to defend them. For one thing, I’m not qualified to judge every aspect of their report. UNSCEAR should be critiqued. But I want to see a critique by others who are qualified to critique them, and the critique should have equal credibility to their study (I believe the WHO released at least one Fukushima study, and they report somewhat different numbers. That’s fine. I don’t think the two groups are in gross disagreement in the big picture (I’d have to go look up the WHO data). And here’s the big thing: if your critique is going to claim that they are corrupt or have an agenda (the critique document in your link relies largely on that argument), then the agenda of those doing the critiquing has to be looked at too. The group who wrote that critique has a clear anti-nuclear agenda. It’s simply the pot calling the kettle black. What I see in that document is a list of assertions that are very difficult to substantiate, and their attempts to support these assertions seem to me to involve questionable interpretation of data and less than reputable studies. And I didn’t see any group listed that seemed to have health physics expertise. It was mostly “physicians concerned about nuclear stuff”. I am not trying to defame these folks (they are presumably experts in their respective fields), but again, they clearly have an agenda, and that is to discredit nuclear power (often by creating fear of things nuclear) in hopes of making it go away. With that agenda, I have to view their comments with some skepticism.

    There will continue to be studies, and time will tell whether the initial studies have it about right or not. I see this as having a parallel in the climate debate. The bulk of the climate science community has formed a fairly coherent consensus about the state of climate change. Yes, they might have it wrong. But they represent the best science on the subject. I don’t have the expertise to reject their conclusions just because I don’t like them, or because some fringe groups or small minority of scientists disagree, or climate deniers claim they’re corrupt. To me, to dismiss what they have done as mere “propaganda” is to give up on the scientific method.

    I have re-read your blogpost on potassium and cesium. I found a couple insights in it that I missed the first time that I think are useful, and again, in general, I think a lot of what you have put together there is reasonably valid. But there is a lot I would take issue with (the main thing being “how comparisons of fallout to potassium-containing food are truly deceptive”; I just think that’s a vague generalization, and in my view, any accusation of deception has to be substantiated with compelling data to support the claim).

    I won’t go into further detail on it here, but maybe one day, if you’re interested, I could do a detailed analysis of it from my perspective. I could even email it to you instead of posting it to your blog, and that way you’d be able to deal with it offline however you like.

    Sorry to have swamped you with such a diatribe. I hope you don’t just decide to dismiss my comments or maybe stop posting them. I know you’re busy, and starting next week, I’ll be very busy as well. But I hope to have some more detailed dialogue with you in the future.

    Regards, Keith

    [MVB: paragraphs were added for easier responding. Nothing else was changed.]

  9. Pingback: Please Note: The Radiation Reported in “leaked documents” from Zaporozhye / Zaporizhia NPP is NOT “5 mSv/year”, but 5 µSv/hr !!! (RT mistranslation being spread widely) | Not All Alleged Is Apparent…

  10. Hi Keith,

    I’ll give responding to this very long comment of yours a shot…

    To insert an umlaut: Very easy on a mac: option u , then e. On a PC…: either “insert symbol” (in word) or copy-paste it.

    Tx, just put up some new pics: https://allegedlyapparent.wordpress.com/2015/01/06/full-moon-snowshoeing-trip-2-nights-at-11000-ft/

    It’s good to get the views of a radiation expert. I appreciate your efforts to convey your viewpoint. I fnd myself a bit challenged not to ‘react’ to some views. To some degree we seem to be from different planets. ;-) You seem to give more value to dosimetry. I’m more inclined to let statistical epidemiological clues trump those. Or even the fact that it’s really hard to not notice how cancer is becoming incredibly common, at ever younger ages. There’s many factors, for sure, but various studies point at widespread and ever-increasing (bomb test, then Chernobyl, then Fukushima, etc…) radioisotope contamination. One study I mentioned is: http://www.ratical.org/radiation/Chernobyl/HEofC25yrsAC.html You may consider these professors and doctors “biased” in their anti-nuclear agenda, but I’m under the impression that if you take the data at heart, I find it a very natural and healthy response to become “anti-nuclear”.

    Now, the problem with the “anti-nuclear” term is that it consists, in my personal view, of at least 3 sub-fields.
    – One is radiation medicine, such as the use of radioisotopes for imaging, diagnosing and cancer treatment. That’s the oldest field, and one I have few issues with in fact. I find it a fascinating scientific field that I have no desire to “shut down”. It may be replaced at some point by different even more effective approaches with less undesirable effects, but that time has not arrived yet.
    – Another is nuclear weapons. I’m extremely “biased” in that regard and would love to see them all peacefully dismantled in my life time.
    – A third is nuclear power plants, which I prefer to call nuclear waste generators. (The electric power really only comes from steam making turbines turn, not from some advanced form of capturing the released energy directly. I know you know that.) This 3rd one grew out of the second and is plagued by similar secrecy and deceptions. The waste issue is key. A segment of the waste is long-lived and requires safe-guarding for a time frame no civilization has ever managed to pull off. That a civilization obsessed wit quarter earnings and short-term profit can pull it off (we’re talking 100,000 years -ish), it beyond arrogant and unspeakably negligent towards future generations. This industries’ MO of secrecy and deception are well-documented, from the Manhattan project (in which the majority of people didn’t even know what they were working on), to rampant lies to the US public (a la Truman saying they bombed Hiroshima, “a military base”, to avoid civilian casualties, when he knew damn well it was practically a refugee camp for families, over half the population being children), to US and European agencies alike, just like the Soviet ones, downplaying the effects of Chernobyl, all the way to “Plume Gate” (See https://allegedlyapparent.wordpress.com/2014/12/02/plume-gate-internal-nrc-communications-released-under-freedom-of-information-act-foia-proof-deliberate-cover-up-of-severity-of-global-fukushima-fallout-in-2011-recent-sfp4-news-may-have-been-part/ ), etc. etc.

    If you’re serious about getting to the truth of this matter, I think you might tumble down the rabbit hole like many of us have. The result of that is extreme skepticism to anything pro-nuclear. This industry MUST be shut down, as if the long-term viability of the biosphere depends on it. ‘Cause it does.

    Yeah… I can only imagine how frustrating that could be, that to many who are opposed to nuclear power, your radiation expertise in itself somehow disqualifies you from being trusted. True to a large degree. The distrust runs very deep. In my opinion for good reasons. But in some cases, the distrust is misplaced. I’ve noticed instances where I felt that way as well. I find it a little funny: As I see it, in your comment(s) you’re actually demonstrating exactly why. I’ll try to explain it it more.

    > “[…] the point is that there are a whole bunch of laypeople people running around striving and groping {mvb: i hope you mean grasping ;-) } to understand things nuclear, but they almost always refuse to regard information from the actual experts on the subject as trustworthy. You have no idea how frustrating this is to the thousands of good people who have dedicated their lives to careers in radiation and nuclear safety to have the public reject them this way. […] The health physics profession is dedicated to helping and protecting people, not deceiving them.”

    There definitely is a need for bridging this abyss. Either “the public” (like me) needs to learn something it has been strangely resistant to learn, or the so-called experts do. Or perhaps a bit of both on both sides, not necessarily equally. I count myself among “the public”, albeit it with a mostly unfluoridated pineal gland and swimming in a sea of time.

    > “To your point about experts making “man-made radioactive fallout sound “as harmless as eating bananas, living at higher altitude, taking a plane, etc”,”. I can understand how, in the context of accidents and contentious questions about nuclear safety, you may feel that you are being patronized or condescended to when told “it’s as safe as eating bananas”. Folks who make such comparisons are trying to simplify the complex and use everyday examples to describe the risks in general terms. But many times, it is done improperly.

    Keith, why are you defending these people doing that? They’re DECEIVING the public. The dose from a banana, or K-rich Kelp for that matter, is irrelevant in pragmatic reality: eating more bananas does NOT increase your risk of cancer, even if it increases your gamma and beta radiation exposure from the dose its inherent K-40 brings with it, inherently. In fact, more potassium tends to lower cancer incidence. So ANY comparison of a dose from ANY other radiation source to the dose from potassium-rich foods is absolutely, not debatable, misplaced: propaganda, deception, a red flag. Any asshole using the comparison (and sadly that includes a lot of “radiation experts”) has ZERO credibility. Get it? I know I’m not just speaking for myself when I say we are fed up with this deceptive nonsense. The UN, the IAEA, the WHO, Woods Hole, you name it, they’ve all RUINED their credibility by using analogies that, upon scrutiny, fall apart.

    > “But there are a couple “hitches” here. The first is that the generalizations go both ways. For instance, in your comment I quoted above, you point to the “poor” generalization of “eating bananas” etc. You’re right, this is a poor generalization because it is non-quantitative (how many bananas, how many plane flights?).”

    Jeez, Keith. NO. It’s not “how many bananas”. More potassium is healthy. Its not just a “poor generalization”, it’s FRAUDULENT. The comparison is fundamentally flawed. Quantification is irrelevant here. It’s a qualitative difference. K, even with its inherent presence of radioactive K-40 and thus dose from K-40, cannot be compared as such due to the metabolic function K plays, including in the suppression of cancers.

    Just to lighten this up a little: Ever seen the movie, “They Live” (John Carpenter, 1988)? If the theme had been expanded to ‘thing nuclear’, some of the billboards might have stated, “Compare doses to know the risk.” I’d suggest smashing the message transmitters too. [j/k ;-)]

    >” But, on the flip side, your comparison to “radioactive fallout” is also a poor generalization for the same reason – it is vague and non-quantitative. We must quantify the dose in both cases. The conceptual error you are at risk of making is this: assuming that “man-made” radioactivity, in general, is always “bad”, and “natural” exposure is relatively harmless. This is simply an untrue premise, but it seems to be at the base of much of the anti-nuclear argument. Dose is dose, and it is the dose that makes the poison. […] Harm comes not from “mere exposure” (e.g. “living near a reactor”, “eating kelp”, “being Japanese”), but from *dose*. The question is – always – what is the dose received?”

    Look, the natural radioactivity that contributes to cancers and other ailments is fairly well know: Among natural causes, Radon is a significant factor, so is smoking; terrestrial (NOT talking about 20,000+ ft elevation flights or space travel) elevation is NOT (dose from cosmic rays increase with altitude, yet: high elevation communities do not have higher cancer rates than lower elevation ones, to the contrary: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3057635/ (in which lies buried the sentence, “Conversely, Cardis et al (2005) found a small increased risk of cancer for low dose exposure to nuclear workers.” as a clue…), nor is potassium (except in the reverse, that more potassium tends to correlate with lower cancer incidence). “Man-made”, not sure why this needs quotes ’cause many of the isotopes made by man do truly not occur in nature at all… they are ‘man-made radioisotopes’ – period. It’s not a “conceptual error” to assume that man-made radioisotopes released into the environment is always “bad”, and “natural” exposure is relatively harmless. Most natural exposure is either harmless or a harmful given of the natural environment. The man-made addition is “always bad” in the sense that it neither neutral nor beneficial to health. Which man-made radioisotope are you claiming to be beneficial to health? Name me one. I can name plenty that are harmful. To simplify, without any incorrect generalization: yes, man-made fallout is “bad”. Are there amounts of man-made radioactive fallout that are too low to link to any increase in cancers or other illness. Of course. When the dose (in the chemical sense here, not necessarily the radiation sense) is low enough, correlation, let alone causation, will get lost in the statistical “noise”.

    >” This is simply an untrue premise, but it seems to be at the base of much of the anti-nuclear argument. Dose is dose, and it is the dose that makes the poison. […] Harm comes not from “mere exposure” (e.g. “living near a reactor”, “eating kelp”, “being Japanese”), but from *dose*. The question is – always – what is the dose received?””

    Nope, dose is not always dose. I see you enjoy this deception, but it’s flawed. I’ve already pointed out above why. Radiation “dose” is meant to communicate “cancer risk” and while it can do so quite well for many cases, current dosimetry seems unable to get past its scope of obsession with ‘dose’ calculations only, apparently refusing to objectively assess field observations and other disciplines. And I don’t know what you mean by “being Japanese”, that’s a very odd thing to say, imo.

    >”The concept can even be extended to hormesis (in which small doses are therapeutic and large doses harmful): taking a few hundred milligrams of an anti-inflamatory can actually be *good* for us, but consuming too much makes it poisonous (I’m not making any claims to radiation hormesis here, just the general concept, which is well known to be valid)”

    Yes, all cases I’ve seen that make a case for the hormesis theory are of external doses, not of fallout, nor of radon. There very well may be truth to this, but as far as mere “doses” go, please don’t bring in fallout into this. No case of “fallout hormesis” has ever been documented that I know of. To bring it up in a discussion about fallout is a red flag for nuclear propaganda.

    >”Anyway, my point is that we must compare apples to apples if we want to make our analogies reasonable.”

    So far, all your apples are doses. I’m not buying the trick. Sorry.

    > “Our examples need to have as much specificity in them as we can reasonably get. To me, this means comparing effective doses, to the extent practical (which is admittedly sometimes not simple).”

    Yeah, EFFECTIVE DOSES. So stop bringing up equivalent and absorbed doses! You guys (if I may generalize “them nuclear experts” for a moment) are so full of it: you say one thing, that you want to compare apples to apples, such as effective doses to effective doses, but you admit that to know an effective dose can be damn complicated, so you throw in some “generalizations”, to use your euphemism, and go on comparing types of doses that actually cannot be compared as such. And then you’re surprised and frustrated your credibility tanks? Gimme a break.

    > “So, we’d have to be more specific about the amount of fallout, what the actual dose is from it, and again, how many bananas, etc., for a comparison like the one you mentioned to be meaningful.”

    Yeah.. How many bananas. Good one. Keep shooting your credibility in the foot…

    > “This brings me to the second “hitch”. As simplistic as they may sound, in many cases, if properly quantified, such comparisons can be useful and reasonably accurate. The concept of the “banana equivalent dose” has been scoffed at, but if treated properly, can be used to at least crudely compare doses.”

    Goodness… Really??? (Grrrr…)

    > “Perhaps more quantitative is the comparison to high altitude flight you mentioned. Effective dose from cosmic ray exposure during air travel can be accurately assessed. The dose rate can vary, but on average, it runs “a few” uSv/h (let’s say roughly 3). The convenient thing about this source is that it is a uniform, external dose, and therefore converts essentially directly to effective dose. So, a three or four hour flight results in say 10 uSv. We should keep in mind that in that three or four hours, we would have gotten some dose from cosmics even at sea level, but about fifty to 100 times less, so for a rough estimate like this, that can be neglected. A number of good studies of flight crew dose have been done, and the average doses run a little over 2 mSv/y. So the trick is, when we compare this to “man-made radioactive fallout”, we need to be just as specific in the dose estimate for someone exposed to that fallout.”

    Your claim in one of the other comments that 2/3rd of our natural radiation not being from cosmic rays, but from the Earth, you have hereby nicely discredited your statement. That aside, If you can be as specific about that, that would be great, but usually your collegues who care-oh-so-much compare those effective doses from airplane flights with mere absorbed dose or equivalent doses of Geiger Counters in a fallout-contaminated area, discounting or ignoring the long-term effects of inhaling the radioisotopes and their effects (which involve very complex dosimetry that is still, very slowly, being improved). I agree in principle with your statement, but have seen the nuclear industry do the exact opposite over and over and over.

    > “I wish I knew how to insert graphics in my comments, but I don’t. Perhaps you’ve read UNSCEAR’s reports on Fukushima, but as an example, I’d point to their comprehensive report located here: http://www.unscear.org/unscear/en/fukushima.html. Excerpted from the 2013 report (Chapter III page 9), “Adults living in the city of Fukushima were estimated to have received, on average, an effective dose of about 4 mSv in the first year following the accident…”, and “Lifetime effective doses (resulting from the accident) that, on average, could be received by those continuing to live in the Fukushima Prefecture have been estimated to be just over 10 mSv…”. The report acknowledges these are averages, and has dose estimates for various sub-populations, etc., and goes into greater detail among its 300+ pages; this is just a summary.”

    Keith, this UNSCEAR report is practically a joke. Nicely professionally worded, sure, but you don’t have to read much of it to see its obvious bias (The full report is @ http://192.168.1.1:8181/http://www.unscear.org/docs/reports/2013/14-06336_Report_2013_Annex_A_Ebook_website.pdf ) If you just take “Chapter III, 2.26 – dose assessment”, you see they made their main assessment about the Fukushima nuclear disaster based on dose estimated from I-131 and Cs-137 only. For I-131, they look at the dose for the thyroid for the short duration of I-131’s decaying lifespan (which is more like 3 months minimum, rather that just a month, but anyhow…), also conveniently ignoring I-129 (with a half-life of 15.7 million years, with low-energy beta and gamma emissions), and more strikingly the statistical/anecdotal evidence of multi-decade effects of the ‘tiny doses’ of such man-made fallout to the Thyroid. For a hint of that, see this NYT article, “In Throats of Émigrés, Doctors Find a Legacy of Chernobyl” (April 20, 2006) @ http://www.nytimes.com/2006/04/20/nyregion/20chernobyl.html?_r=3&amp; . Then for Cs-137, they looked at the extra external dose Cs-137 DEPOSITION on the ground causes, only, ignoring the effect ( and certainly the long-term effect) of all the particles inhaled/digested. So, you get the picture they sketch early on: they pick the 2 main radioisotopes and then make an assessment within an extremely limited scope of their effect. They ignore the massive amounts released of Sr-90, Co-60, Plutonium, Tellurium, the early massive extremely dense cloud of Xe-133, etc., for mammal & bird sampling locations they avoided the areas with over 500 KBq Cs-137,… You keep reading after seeing that? My tolerance for bs is a lot lower. At the same time, and that’s why it is still ‘scientific’, they do clarify the “vast uncertainties”. If you look into those, all other statements lose their punch.

    [Sigh…] UNSCEAR proclaims: “No discernible increase in cancer rates for workers”, when even under normal circumstances nuclear workers have a slightly higher incidence of cancers. (http://www.webmd.com/cancer/news/20050628/nuclear-workers-may-face-higher-cancer-risk ) Working in a highly radioactive environment with clouds of radioactive dust blowing around (even with all the protective gear the “decontaminated areas” aren’t devoid of the radionuclides entirely), of course there will be some increase. Come on. To claim ‘none’ is just see-through propaganda. You may claim that “they care”, I see scant evidence of that. People who care don’t resort to deception through omission.

    > “Now, let’s suspend (at least for the moment) our notions of conspiracies or the ineptitude of UNSCEAR; for now, let’s just assume that the folks who did these studies are dedicated experts who pay attention to details, made scientifically-based decisions and judgments regarding which data to use in the analysis, and are more likely than just about anyone to get the dose estimate about right (certainly a better chance than me or you).”

    I have no reason to suspend my suspicion that UNSCEAR is not operating in full integrity.

    > “What then could we say about airline flights and Fukushima? If we compare dose to dose, we could say that a person living in Fukushima on average got about twice the dose of a typical airline pilot in the first year after the accident. So here is what sounds like a simplistic comparison, but it is actually a reasonably good one (at least, in my view).”

    Airplane flights are individual one-time events of external equivalent doses from a distant gamma source that can easily be converted into an effective dose. Fallout in Fukushima consists of accumulating external dose from radioactive deposition (and some dust) of various radioisotopes, plus internal doses, whose effective dose to specific organs as well as the whole body is extremely difficult to gauge, and requires complex assessments over time periods for each radioisotope, with some passing through and some getting lodged in tissues.
    My non-expert amateur opinion: Absolutely stupid comparison. Or you think those Ukraine emigrees got thyroid cancer from that airplane flight to New York over 20 years later?

    In the broader context of background, we can say that this dose is within the range of normal global *natural* background dose (which is around 2.4 mSv/y on average, and varies from around 1 to upwards of 20 mSv/y depending on the population group). The above is a reasonable way (in my humble, semi-expert view) to make a dose comparison. If it is not a reasonable comparison, then I am at a loss as to a better way to make one.

    > “Further, if this is not a reasonable approximation, I would then question whether there is any way to make a reasonable estimate about most any hazard, because these estimates represent the state of the art, and health physics is a reasonably mature science.”

    If the science were applied correctly, perhaps that could be true, but I see evidence of that simply not being the case a bit too often to second that opinion.

    > “Could UNSCEAR be off? Could this be in error? Yes, but by how much? For their part, they say that built into their estimates are a number of conservative assumptions, which generally cause over-estimations. If it’s off (low) by a factor of ten, how significant is that? That would mean a 40 mSv first-year dose and 100 mSv lifetime dose to people in the Prefecture (and much less to those further away). How dangerous is that? Not to oversimplify (but in trying to keep this from becoming a book)”

    Ha.

    > “[…] Now, you mentioned being somewhat skeptical of UNSCEAR. You even called their report “propaganda”. I suppose it is dealing with this sort of view that I find it most difficult to find common ground with anti-nuclear folks.

    :-/ Yeah… And vise versa.

    > “UNSCEAR might have it wrong. But I’m not going to fall into a mindset that they “must” have it wrong, because their results aren’t what I expected, or because I just can’t trust them on general principle (yes, I’ve seen lots of the chatter out there about how UNSCEAR must be in collusion with TEPCO and Japanese authorities, etc., etc.). I won’t attempt to argue on a point by point basis in order to defend them. For one thing, I’m not qualified to judge every aspect of their report. UNSCEAR should be critiqued. But I want to see a critique by others who are qualified to critique them, and the critique should have equal credibility to their study (I believe the WHO released at least one Fukushima study, and they report somewhat different numbers. That’s fine. I don’t think the two groups are in gross disagreement in the big picture (I’d have to go look up the WHO data). And here’s the big thing: if your critique is going to claim that they are corrupt or have an agenda (the critique document in your link relies largely on that argument), then the agenda of those doing the critiquing has to be looked at too. The group who wrote that critique has a clear anti-nuclear agenda. It’s simply the pot calling the kettle black. What I see in that document is a list of assertions that are very difficult to substantiate, and their attempts to support these assertions seem to me to involve questionable interpretation of data and less than reputable studies.”

    Yes, that assertion can indeed be made both ways. I have seen things I’d call deceptive and propaganda in the anti-nuclear camp as well.

    “[…] There will continue to be studies, and time will tell whether the initial studies have it about right or not. I see this as having a parallel in the climate debate. The bulk of the climate science community has formed a fairly coherent consensus about the state of climate change. Yes, they might have it wrong. But they represent the best science on the subject. I don’t have the expertise to reject their conclusions just because I don’t like them, or because some fringe groups or small minority of scientists disagree, or climate deniers claim they’re corrupt. To me, to dismiss what they have done as mere “propaganda” is to give up on the scientific method.”

    One, you call people skeptical of the IPCC so-called consensus “climate deniers” one more time, and you will be banned from this blog. (for a clue why, see also here: https://allegedlyapparent.wordpress.com/2012/06/25/a-scientists-response-to-nature-magazines-use-of-denier-in-the-scientific-literature-re-climate-change-politics/ ). Secondly, to question a theory is not denial. To deny the natural variability of climate is denial. World of difference. My view on the ICC’s “consensus” is @ https://allegedlyapparent.wordpress.com/2011/11/27/cult-of-man-made-global-warming/
    The comparison of the UN’s nuclear bs with the UN’s climate bs is quite good, though. ;-) Not how you meant that, I’m sure.

    > “I have re-read your blogpost on potassium and cesium. I found a couple insights in it that I missed the first time that I think are useful, and again, in general, I think a lot of what you have put together there is reasonably valid. But there is a lot I would take issue with (the main thing being “how comparisons of fallout to potassium-containing food are truly deceptive”; I just think that’s a vague generalization, and in my view, any accusation of deception has to be substantiated with compelling data to support the claim).”

    What more data do you need? Eat more potassium, less cancer. Eat more cesium-137, more cancer. Compare the doses from and make ’em look like they’re about equally dangerous? DECEPTIVE, Keith. It’s not that hard to grasp.

    > […] I hope you don’t just decide to dismiss my comments or maybe stop posting them.

    It’s within the realm of possibilities.

  11. Pingback: Gaging Recent Radiation Spikes: How do the Recent Gamma Upticks Compare to those Observed after Chernobyl? | Not All Alleged Is Apparent…

  12. Michael, I ran across your posts when doing some research on comparing Fukushima and Chernobyl contamination levels. I don’t agree with some of your conclusions, but these posts have a lot of good data in them. Thanks for doing the research.

    [Tx, “TheRadicalModerate” – Because your comment is long, I’ll comment in bold within under your (left unchanged) text. – mvb]

    I completely agree that there’s a distinction between internal and external dosages, but you have a serious misunderstanding of the inverse square issue, and that leads to some confusion with the “cosmic rays are different from fallout” assertion. The second confusion is a result of the first, so let’s get the inverse square problem out of the way first.

    When you’re talking about individual nuclear events, the energy of each particle that’s emitted doesn’t decrease via an inverse square.

    [ I never claimed that. I’m sorry to have to say, but this kind of rhetoric, a la “you don’t understand”, followed by stating a fact, presented as if I claimed something different from that fact, only does one thing: waste people’s time reading these comments.]

    A 622 keV gamma photon emitted from a Cs-137 decay in vacuum can travel for thousands of light-years and still have an energy of 622 keV. (Geek note: I’ll neglect the expansion of the universe when I say this, because that will reduce its energy. But the quantum mechanics is bad enough without dragging general relativity into the mix as well.)

    [Yes. Correct]

    The inverse square law is important when measuring the flux of radiation, because a small blob of radioactive material emits particles in all directions, and the rate of particles flowing through a particular solid angle falls off as the square of the distance from the emitter.

    [Yes. Correct. That’s what I explained in the blog post.]

    (Geek note 2: If you remember that the surface area of a sphere is 4*pi*radius^2, you can get a feel for why this is true.) In classical applications, all you care about is flux, and the terms “flux” and “intensity” can be used almost interchangeably. As a photographer, you know that the “brightness” of an image is based not so much on the energy of the photons that hit the film (i.e., whether they’re red or blue), but rather the number of them per time. The number (flux) is governed by the inverse square law, not the energy.

    [Yes. And? I never claimed it applies to the energy of the photons themselves, I talked about intensity, same as flux here.]

    By the way, you’re not completely correct when you say, “Theoretically, radiation intensity of the point at the point itself… is… infinitely intense, but the inverse square law only applies to point sources, and falls apart once the distance of measurement is smaller than the size of the source.” The inverse square law works for a spherical source of any size, as long as you’re measuring the flux at any point beyond the radius.

    [No, Wrong. I’m NOT “Not completely correct”. I am equally correct as you, but we worded it differently. I agree your wording is clearer, but you don’t have to make it sound like I was wrong. My wording, regarding the inverse square law NOT BEING applicable “once the distance of measurement is smaller than the size of the source” means EXACTLY the same as your wording, regarding the inverse square law BEING applicable “as long as you’re measuring the flux at any point beyond the radius”.]

    (Geek note 3: Inside the radius, the intensity falls off as 1/R, not 1/R^2.) But we can’t get to a radius of 0, because before we get there, quantum mechanics rears its ugly head. For our purposes, the flux is determined by the becquerels of the source–whatever its size–and the radius from it, and that’s it. The energy of the particles is the energy of the particles (gamma photons in this case), irrespective of the distance.

    [Correct. Are you bringing in the gamma photons’ energy again to confuse people? Knock it off.]

    But when you start comparing Sieverts, distance is irrelevant, because the dose in Sieverts can only be computed by considering the distance in the first place.

    [Dang. Clever. So you start out by saying a few nice things about my blogposts, you state some facts, even essentially repeat things you can read in my blogpost, and then you show all the characteristics of a nuclear shill.

    Classic example of how nuclear experts will try to sow confusion: The first part of sentence above is correct as-is: when you start comparing Sieverts, distance is irrelevant. ‘Sievert’, you wrote. That’s not the intensity of flux the Inverse Square Law applies to. That would be in Sievert per some time period, such as, to name a commonly used flux units: in ‘microSievert per hour’. The second part of the sentence, “the dose in Sieverts can only be computed by considering the distance in the first place” is partially wrong, because, 1) the dose would not be in just Sievert, but in Sievert/day or per hour, or what have we: some time length. The distance isn’t “used to compute the dose” per se. It is generally MEASURED by for instance a Geiger Counter. And if the radioactive source is near, you’ll get a different equivalent dose depending on the distance from that source you’re taking measurements. You don’t have to enter “the distance” in a Geiger Counter when you’re taking measurements. It measures the dose rate (the intensity, the flux). So you’re wrong.

    And then, – see your next line below – after stating that above mixture of what’s technically correct + incorrect, you add something else correct, but the two correct pieces are actually very different. “Sievert” in and of itself is Joule/Kg, it’s about the ENERGY (Joule), while INTENSITY (or ‘flux’) are about how much of that energy (Joule) is hitting that mass (Kg) over time (/hour). Since it is clear to me that you fully understand the physics, I have little reason to believe you’re any different from the hordes of “nuclear experts” that try to sow confusion in professional-sounding lengthy explanations, that upon scrutiny, like all nuclear propaganda, fall apart. So, I’ll repeat your line above, so it can be seen as you wrote it (which was together, not separated by a paragraph): ]

    But when you start comparing Sieverts, distance is irrelevant, because the dose in Sieverts can only be computed by considering the distance in the first place. 0.3 uSv/hr from Cs-137, inside the body or outside the body, is exactly three times as damaging as 0.1 uSv/hr from cosmic radiation. That’s because the “quantity dose equivalent” depends only on the flux of particles, their energy when when they first hit tissue, the “linear energy transfer function” (which is a measure of how much energy will be transferred to tissue based on how far the particle travels in the tissue) and nothing more. (Well, more if you want to discriminate by tissue type, but let’s not.) It doesn’t matter whether the dosage comes from Cs-137 sitting inside tissue or from gamma rays originating in Cygnus X-1, because the flux of gammas * their average energy * the linear energy transfer function is the same in both cases.

    [Okay, so you’re a nuclear shill. Nice try. For possible readers of these comments, I’ll shred the bullshit Mr. “TheRadicalModerate” just spewed:

    See, they’re very clever: He wrote, “0.3 uSv/hr from Cs-137, inside the body or outside the body, is exactly three times as damaging as 0.1 uSv/hr from cosmic radiation.”, which is correct AS STATED. It comes with the unspoken assumption that the point of measurement is the same. (Unless he’s talking about effective doses everywhere, in which case he’s just creating a self-referential loop of correctness, utterly unrelated to the inverse square law that applies to equivalent dose rate measurements). The difference is huge here. Let’s say that the Cs-137 inside the body is 5 cm away from the Geiger Counter laying on the belly, measuring an equivalent dose rate at that distance of 0.3 µSv/hr. At that distance, that would indeed be 3x as damaging as 0.1 µSv/hr from cosmic rays there. Cosmic rays came from so far away that moving a couple meters closer to the source of those cosmic rays (supernovae, etc.) makes no difference. Moving closer to the Cs-137, however, will illustrate the Inverse Square Law. (I think you’re just trying to sow confusion, but if you’re actually honestly delusional without realizing that, I suggest you get an expert to show you a Geiger Counter, and then watch how the dose it measures differs at different distances from an emitting source. Not recommended, but perhaps the expert you consult could demonstrate this by holding the Geiger Counter at various distances from the 37,000 Bq of radioactive Americium-241 inside a smoke detector (He/She’d have to carefully take it apart to get the crazy-high dose rate at close range.), and then, perhaps, you can learn hands-on that the Inverse Square Law perfectly applies to particles emitting radiation)]

    That’s because the “quantity dose equivalent” depends only on the flux of particles, their energy when when they first hit tissue, the “linear energy transfer function” (which is a measure of how much energy will be transferred to tissue based on how far the particle travels in the tissue) and nothing more.

    [Jeez, dude. The flux is affected by the distance from the emitting source. That what I explained in my blog post. Your last sentence above is correct, except for the “That’s because” part, which refers to the nonsense you spewed before, already debunked. Unless, of course -again-, you’re comparing effective doses, in which case you should have pointed that out up front, because you started off by setting the context by referring to my assertion that “cosmic rays are different from fallout”, which applies to equivalent doses. And that’s very clear in my blog post above.

    I appreciate you giving me the chance to point this out to genuine citizen researchers, though, ’cause what you’re illustrating is precisely how nuclear propaganda works: It mixes expertise in such a way that you practically have to be an expert yourself to spot the deception. If you’re not paying attention to every detail, the deception is easily missed.]

    (Well, more if you want to discriminate by tissue type, but let’s not.) It doesn’t matter whether the dosage comes from Cs-137 sitting inside tissue or from gamma rays originating in Cygnus X-1, because the flux of gammas * their average energy * the linear energy transfer function is the same in both cases.

    [ Bullshit if your’e comparing equivalent doses. The linear energy transfer PER ENERGY TRANSFER is the same, but tissue closer to the radioactive particle source inside the body will receive a greater flux (a higher effective dose) the closer to the source, while the cosmic rays will deliver about the same dose to all tissues (with some differences if you want to discriminate by tissue type, but I agree, let’s not).]

    Now, what does matter is how long you’re exposed to each of these sources.

    [And the distance from the source too, at least when comparing equivalent doses, which is what my assertion, mentioned at the onset of your comment, applied to.]

    If you’re exposed to an extra 5 uSv/hr on a transcontinental plane ride for 6 hours, you get 30 uSv and it stops when you land. But if you eat enough Cs-137 to give you the same 5 uSv/hr exposure and it takes you two months to excrete half of it, then you’ve received 10,387 uSv (geek note #4: for excretion half-life h in hours–1440 for a typical two-month Cs excretion half-life–and dosage rate r, in uSv/hr–5 uSv/hr in this case–total dosage in uSv is r * integral from time t=0 to t=infinity of e^(-ln(2)*t/h)*dt = r*h/0.69 = 10,387 uSv = ~10.4 mSv), which is almost 350 times the dosage of the plane ride.

    [“But if you eat enough Cs-137 to give you the same 5 uSv/hr exposure” means what? At what distance was that 5µSv/hr measured? Or is that the whole-body effective dose (which would involve complicated internal dosimetry to arrive at in the first place, not telling me anything about the radioACTIVITY of the digested Cs-137). Omitting all those details makes it sound like all the doses are comparable. That’s not per se the case. My blog posts starts off by explaining the differences.]

    So yes, internal exposures are much worse than external exposures, but it has exactly nothing to do with the distance of the sources. It only has to do with how hard it is to make the exposure stop.

    [Crafty, dude. If you aren’t already, you qualify to work for the nuclear industry. Yours is one of the better smart-sounding bullshit I’ve come across so far. Your entire comment is aimed at making people believe that the inverse square law somehow does not apply to ingested radioactive particles. You did it in roughly three steps steps. First you claim I have a serious misunderstanding and refer to my assertion: “you have a serious misunderstanding of the inverse square issue, and that leads to some confusion with the “cosmic rays are different from fallout”, but you hide what you’re about to do. My assertion compares equivalent doses. So, if you were honest (which obviously you’re not), you would make your case comparing equivalent doses. IF the dose rates (flux) you refer to in your comment were equivalent doses, then you’re spewing bullshit. If the dose rates (flux) you refer to in your comment were effective doses, then your entire comment has zero bearing on my blogpost, in which case you’re spewing bullshit. In short: you’re spewing bullshit no matter how one looks at it.

    Given the context (the inverse square law and comparing equivalent doses), your act of omitting the distance from the equation regarding the emitting sources when comparing 2 equivalent doses was deceptive. And then you continue by comparing what appear to be two effective doses. It’s to help debunk your kind of crafty deceptive nuclear propaganda that I wrote the blog post. ;-)

    Since it is clear that you understand the physics and the math, your comment is nice example of what people seeking the truth are up against. Thank you for contributing.

    PS: Consider adding a little extra tumeric to your diet. It might help decalcify your pineal gland. Blessings on your journey towards truth. Bye bye. ]

  13. [snip]

    Admin.: Obfuscating lenghthy more-of-the-same bs won’t get a platform here. Buy a Geiger Counter, get some experience. Take care.

  14. Pingback: DATA of ‘Fallout Signatures’ on Radiation Monitors Suggest Fukushima Still Going Re-Critical Underground At Times. Airborne Fallout Continues To Come Down Across the Northern Hemisphere. | Not All Alleged Is Apparent…

  15. Pingback: Der Spiegel on US Navy Sailers Suffering in the Aftermath of Exposure to Fukushima Fallout, and their lawsuit against TEPCO. (Feb. 2015) | Not All Alleged Is Apparent…

  16. Pingback: Geiger Counter Data from Airplane Flights: Denver -> Atlanta -> Amsterdam | Not All Alleged Is Apparent…

  17. Pingback: A Visit to Belgium’s Nuclear Waste Depository Lab, HADES, 750 feet Underground… | Not All Alleged Is Apparent…

  18. Pingback: Documentary: Pandora’s Promise Was A Lie – The Fukushima Story | Not All Alleged Is Apparent…

  19. Pingback: Spring Snow PHOTOS. And Why I’m Taking a Break from (Nuclear) Blogging | Not All Alleged Is Apparent…

  20. Pingback: Chernobyl’s Radioactive Forest Fire. [April 29, 2015] – Location on map, Wind & Radiation Monitoring links | Not All Alleged Is Apparent…

  21. Pingback: Nuclear Engineer: It May Take 200 years to Solve the Fukushima Problem | Not All Alleged Is Apparent…

  22. Pingback: Anyway… | Not All Alleged Is Apparent…

  23. Pingback: Chernobyl Grass Fires (End of June, Begin of July – 2015) – A Quick Look | Not All Alleged Is Apparent…

  24. Pingback: EURDEP Radiation Monitor Rigging through Systematic Omissions Continues… / + With 6 Years of Radiation Data graphed for Ritsem, Sweden / (NEW (Public) Record High reached in Sept 2015) | Not All Alleged Is Apparent…

  25. Pingback: Another Round of Looking into Recent Radiological Disturbaces. | Not All Alleged Is Apparent…

  26. Pingback: (JUST DATA) Baltic Zoom-in on Multiple Radiation Monitors Simultaneously (a EURDEP Snapshot) + Some Radnet data | Allegedly Apparent Blog

  27. Pingback: Highest Radiation in a Decade @ Exeter, U.K. (Jan. 2016 ) | Allegedly Apparent Blog

  28. Pingback: UCLA: “California Thyroid Cancer Incidence Well Above National Average”. Fukushima Fallout, the Near-Certain Cause, Being Ignored… | Allegedly Apparent Blog

  29. Pingback: Any Significance to Cobalt-60 in Fukushima Fallout? | Allegedly Apparent Blog

  30. Pingback: Absurdistan Calls on Nordic Alliance in Response to *Record Radiation Spike in Northern Sweden* (EURDEP/Nullschool) | Allegedly Apparent Blog

  31. hadia says:

    I again read your complete statement on Dose Deception and the one of Keith.
    Michael, I appreciate that you keep faithfully to your line. I think these nuclear lobbyists, so called technocrats, never could be convinced.. even though the world would go down tomorrow.

    I personally read complete books full of data of ICRP, BEIR, RERF and NRPB but: I would like to say simply its: 80% about their DECEPTION. They are presenting their theoretical statistics, which in my view never could meet the expectations of REALITY: I think any increase of radioactivity to the human body leads to a potential higher cancer risk.period.

    Btw: The risk calculations are complicated by the pure fact that with actual increase of our own informations/knowledge any health hazards should be calculated accordingly.

    Hm, I wonder, why through the years for instance in Germany the dose limits always have been rescheduled (of course in favor of the nuclear medical lobby and the nuclear “mafia”)…
    “They take your soul if you let them, but don´t you let them”…….++++++++++
    This song for you personally, Michael:https://youtu.be/xEkIou3WFnM

  32. Pingback: Peculiar Radiation Spikes in Europe (@early March 2016) Suggest “Mystery Radiological Emergency” is ONGOING | Allegedly Apparent Blog

  33. Pingback: PLANETARY Radiological RED ALERT Situation ONGOING | Allegedly Apparent Blog

  34. Pingback: Couple EURDEP Observations (3-month graphs) | Allegedly Apparent Blog

  35. Pingback: Record Radiation Spikes in Belgium | Allegedly Apparent Blog

  36. Pingback: Riga, Latvia (EURDEP, 6 months) + wondering about Halden, Norway | Allegedly Apparent Blog

  37. Pingback: Couple EURDEPs | Allegedly Apparent Blog

  38. Pingback: Couple EURDEPs (July 25, 2017 – Various) | Allegedly Apparent Blog

  39. Pingback: “Couple EURDEPs” – Attempted Epilogue re. Observations & Musings from the land of ‘Monitoring Radiation Monitoring’… (heavily sprinkled with YT Music & Videos) | Allegedly Apparent Blog

  40. Pingback: 530 SIEVERT/hr, Highest Radiation Since 3/11 @Fukushima-Daiichi’s Reactor 2 | Allegedly Apparent Blog

  41. Pingback: Wave after Wave… | Allegedly Apparent Blog

Thank you for commenting. Your comment won't show until approved. Sometimes that can take awhile. - mvb

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s