I recently reported the die off of sea lions off of the coast of California. Hattie Nestle shared with me Yoichi Shimatsu’s report of using a Geiger counter near San Onofre reactor looking at sea life. Yoichi used a Radex radiation detector, which measures information on a 40 second sample. It seems to be an end plate design. Baseline data is about .13 microseverts per hour, which is consistent with the data I have found. This short sample time can lead to great variabiliity in results. I have found that averages of 13 can vary from lows of 5 to highs in the 30’s. Much of what he reported to be high could be variability. However, he also reported:
A quick scan with a dosimeter revealed that the sea lion was radioactive. More careful measurements disclosed a shocking 0.48 microsieverts in the heart and liver region.
This quick scan shows a result that is 3.7 times baseline does seem significant and consistent with the hypothesis that the there was radioactivity concentrated in the sea lion. At this point a longer scan of 5-10 minutes would increase the value of this data. HIs report that the boat is radioactive at .13 microseverts is puzzling, as that is consistent with baseline radiation. His observation of high levels of 1.2 microseverts in Japan is a correct assessment of high levels.
Some wonder how this could happen, because the ocean is so large. Part of the answer is that biological tissues avidly take up potassium, because it is so rare, being only 400 parts per million in the ocean, but a major component of intracellular electrolytes The tissues cannot distinguish potassium and cesium. Thus, cesium will be actively taken up by tissues, starting with plankton and up the food chain to the sea lions.
Japan Experts: Up to 93 billion becquerels a day may still be leaking into Pacific from Fukushima plant, much in the form of cesium 137.
Radioactivity continues to leak, and life from plankton to sea lions will be effected.
- Fukushima radiation into ocean: is it killing sea lions? (nuclear-news.net)
- Dead sea lions washing on shore in California appear to have died from radiation poisoning (vineoflife.net)
- Dead sea lions washing on shore in California appear to have died from radiation poisoning (dprogram.net)