Saturday, December 5, 2015

Record levels of Fukushima radiation detected off West Coast — Massive plume stretches for more than 1,000 miles — Reuters: Contamination is spreading off U.S. shores — Radioactive cesium reaches 11 Bq/m3 at multiple locations (MAP)

Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, Dec 3, 2015 (emphasis added): Higher levels of Fukushima cesium detected offshore — Scientists monitoring the spread of radiation in the ocean from the Fukushima nuclear accident report finding an increased number of sites off the US West Coast showing signs of contamination from Fukushima. This includes thehighest detected level to date from a sample collected about 1,600 miles west of San Francisco. The level of radioactive cesium isotopes in the sample, 11 Becquerel’s per cubic meter… is 50 percent higher than other samples collected along the West Coast so far… Working with Japanese colleagues, [Ken Buesseler, a WHOI marine radiochemist] also continues to independently monitor the ongoing leaks from Fukushima Dai-ichi by collecting samples… During his most recent trip this October they collected samples of ocean water, marine organisms, seafloor sediment and groundwater along the coast near the reactors. Buesseler says the levels of radioactivity offFukushima remain elevated – some 10 to 100 times higher than off the US West Coast today, and he is working with colleagues at WHOI to try to determine how much radioactive material is still being released to the ocean each day.

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