Record caesium level in Fukushima fish

A record concentration of radioactive caesium, 5,100 times the government’s food safety standard, was detected in a fish caught near the crippled Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant, the plant’s operator said on 28th February 2013.

The port of the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant in July 2012

The port of the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant in July 2012 (Asahi Shimbun file photo)

Tokyo Electric Power Co. said the reading of 510,000 becquerels per kilogram in the greenling is the highest ever recorded in the utility’s seafood sampling surveys following the March 2011 disaster at the nuclear plant.

The finding was announced on 28th February at a meeting of leaders of the Fukushima Prefectural Federation of Fisheries Cooperative Associations. The greenling was found caught on 17th February in a gill net at the mouth of the plant’s port. The net was installed to prevent fish from drifting outside.

A rockfish found caught on 15th February in a cage net along a wharf in the port produced a reading of 277,000 becquerels per kilogram, according to TEPCO.
TEPCO told the fisheries federation that it will step up measures to contain radioactive fish.

Source: The Asahi Shimbun, Japan, 1st March 2013


Marinet observes:  As a Fukushima-scale nuclear accident is now revealing, the consequences for the marine environment can be both severe and almost certainly long-term. The UK’s fishing industry is under severe pressure at present due to over-fishing, and the industry has been forced to contract greatly in recent times as a consequence. There are now steps in place (reform of the EU Common Fisheries Policy) which offer the prospect of a revitalisation of the UK fishing industry.  However, could the UK fishing industry survive and indeed prosper again if it underwent a Fukushima-scale event ?  No one believes that such a scenario is “realistic”, but it has happened in Japan. Can we afford to employ nuclear power and to run the risk of this kind of reality?

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