Written Monday, March 14th at 10:05pm.
Even though the crisis continues in Japan with more explosions, and more reports of radiation leakage, we are not seeing the type of problems that were found at Chernobyl. The situation can change at any moment, and my thoughts go out to those working on averting another catastrophe.
The Kyoto times is reporting that around one of the nuclear plants the radiation exposure levels have reached 965.5 microsievert per hour. This is equivalent to having one side view cervical x-ray every 1 hour 45 minutes. (I wrote a paper many years ago on radiation exposure and according to FDA Handbook of Radiation Doses, one lateral cervical x-ray is 1.7 REM. 965.5 microsieverts are equal to .09655 Rem.) This is what the workers that are trying to cool the reactors are being exposed to. (see update below: there has been a one time radiation leakage of 400X this amount.)
Another website that I am watching is RadiationNetwork.com, with a real time environmental radiation tracking map of the continental U.S.A. They state that a normal background radiation level is between 30 and 60 counts per minute (CPM-readings on a geiger counter). An alert level would be anything over 130 CPM. They update the site every three minutes. So far there have been no readings out of the ordinary.
In other news, Dr. Brownstein (author of Iodine: Why You Need It, Why You Can’t Live Without It) is recommending that everyone should start to take 12-13 mg of iodine/day. This is equal to 6-7 drops of Iosol. I have more on order, and am looking to source different forms/brands of high potency iodine.
While I don’t disagree with him. I am waiting for anything to show up on the Radiation Network site. I will recommend to source potassium iodide from a pharmacy/health food store to have on hand in case things continue to deteriorate.
It makes me realize how truly unprepared we are in case of a nuclear emergency.
Update: Tuesday March 15th, 8:52am: The Plain Dealer is reporting that one of the reactors is continuously releasing radioactive steam. They also say that radiation release has gone to 8,217 microseverts/hour (9x more than was reported last night). This is now worse than what happened at Three Mile Island. I will continue to watch RadiationNetwork.com.
Update 9:10 am: The IAEA is reporting that there was a one time release of 400 millisieverts (40 rem). They also report that there was a release of 11.9 millisieverts per hour 1.19 rem and is now at .6 millisieverts (.6 rem) an hour. They have changed the scale that they are reporting radiation leakage: one millisievert is 1000 microsieverts.