Japan Nuclear Disaster: Irradiated Tokyo water, banned food imports

Posted: March 24, 2011 in environment, health
Tags: , , , , ,

Japan Nuclear Disaster:  Irradiated Tokyo water, banned food imports

Japan’s nuclear disaster has taken another ugly turn.  Contamination was expected to occur near the nuclear facilities and so it was no surprise to see crops near the plant turn up contaminated.  However, today water contaminated with radioactive iodine was detected in Tokyo over 150 miles away from the site of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant disaster.  This discovery lead to the government releasing a health warning instructing parents not to give infants tap water or use it to make baby formula.  The result of course was an immediate run on bottled water in Tokyo.

This has lead the United States, Korea, Singapore and other nations to put limits on Japanese imports ranging from milk, to spinach to a range of crops.

The impact of the disaster is even being felt in the United States where in California and all along the Pacific Coast there have been runs on supplies of potassium iodide.  This is certainly an overreaction well over 5,000 miles from the disaster.  The amounts of radiation reaching the West Coast is miniscule and absolutely below any level that could be determined a health risk.  It’s also important that people not at risk don’t take Potassium Iodide as it can have severe side-effects.

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