Fukishima Cold Shutdown
After the Japanese Tsunami (25,000 dead) the world has focussed its post Tsunami reporting on a series of meltdowns at the Fukishima nuclear plant.
There are those who have eagerly claimed that Fukishima would result in hundreds of thousands of radiation based deaths. The highest prediction Billothewisp has so far come across is 1.4 million.
But no one has actually died of a radiation induced illness at Fukishima. Nor are there likely to be any fatalities, especially as Fukishima reached cold shutdown a couple of weeks ago.
( See This IAEA pdf )
But was Fukishima just a lucky break for the nuclear industry?
Just like at Windscale 1957? At Windscale a Plutonium fire burned for days spewing radioactive waste over the nearby village. The subsequent enquiry declared that thirty three people were "statistically" killed though nobody actually knows who they were.
Another lucky break for the nuclear industry?.
Or like the 1979 Three Mile Island partial meltdown. Lots of panic. Lots of lurid predictions but no deaths.
Was this just another lucky break for the nuclear industry?
Even the ultimate catastrophe at Chernobyl. You know - explosion, no containment vessel, burned for days, dumped its plutonium into a nearby forest, nobody doing anything effective for a considerable period, clouds of radiation over Europe, no issue of Iodine tablets until weeks later.
The wild predictions of millions of deaths from Chernobyl remain just that - wild predictions. Truly it was socially dislocating industrial distaster. But hardly a catastrophe. Look at the Japanese Tsunami for a real catastrophe.
So was even Chernobyl just another lucky break for the nuclear industry?
Are you like me starting the get the feeling that there is something very wrong here.
Either the lurid predictions of millions of deaths are true and these deaths are being hidden from us by some fantastic dark international conspiracy, or there is something very seriously wrong with the way some people are assessing radiation risk.
After reading a book by Prof. Wade Allison of Oxford University, I am very strongly of the opinion that the latter is the case.
The book is called Radiation and Reason. ( Amazon Link Here )
There is also a website unsurprisingly called http://www.radiationandreason.com/
Here is a Link to Prof Allison's bio on that site. Here is his Bio on Wikipedia.
The guy is a Fellow of Keble College and a Professor of Physics at the University of Oxford. Don't be put off. The book is highly readable.
I think many will find Allisons book an eye opener.