Monday, July 4, 2011

Bad headline?

Here is the headline:

Fukushima: Radioactive cesium-137 found in Tokyo’s tap water

Here is what the story reports:

Cesium-137 registered at 0.14 becquerel per kilogram in Shinjuku ward on July 2 and none was discovered yesterday, compared with 0.21 becquerel on April 22, according to the Tokyo Metropolitan Institute of Public Health. No cesium-134 or iodine-131 was detected, the agency said on its website.
"This is unlikely to be the result of new radioactive materials being introduced" into the water supply, Hironobu Unesaki, a nuclear engineering professor a Kyoto Univeristy, said today by telephone. That's "because no other elements were detected, especially the more sensitive iodine," he said.

Read the article

You be the judge. There will be many anti-nuclear zealots who panic over the headline and never read the story.

I don't want to minimize the risks to the Japanese due to radiation  coming from the horrific failure of safety systems at Fukushima, but let's be honest about it, let's put it in perspective. The death toll for the earthquake and tsunami stands at ~ 25K.

The economic costs are crushing. $200 billion and counting.

For Fukushima the death toll appears to stand at 2 workers, although that most certainly will rise.

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