By Edward Johnson
My last blog on this disaster I attempted to focus on what would possibly happen to the sea-life in the ocean surrounding Fukushima and beyond. Finally, we have a little peak at what is happening though the details neglect to include any specific mention of impact on living things. Further that the plant operator, TEPCO, has been responsible for collecting and submitting this data. At this point it seems that an international organization should be involved as at least a second party to verify collection procedures and data collected. I for one have very little confidence in anything submitted by either this company or the Japanese government. It is unclear as to the total times bottom samples have been taken since March 11, but this is the first time radioactive samples have been detected in bottom samples. These findings have been consistent at both the 9 mile and 12 mile distance into the ocean from the nuclear reactors. Previously I was unsure of the actual sea depth but noting that in all cases it was less then 100 feet is most alarming. The sea-floor at these shallow depths is that countries ocean food basket. At this time of year biological activity should be at a maximum as it is here off the coast of Oregon. Again I will include my new favorite living thing, Prochlorcoccus, part bacteria part plant, that provides up to 50% of all ocean produced oxygen. Why is it mentioned, it is the driving force for element uptake from bottom sediments and the transmission to higher forms which include phytoplankton, brown algae, as well as krill and up the food chain. Although no mention has been made of whales, baleen whales are almost totally dependent on krill while all other whales are at-least partially dependent as intermediate food for various fish types. Oh, as of last Friday when these samples were collected based what has been released to the public these levels are only 600 times what had previously been considered within safe limits.
By Edward Johnson
Recently I posted a blog titled, “Titanic Sails from Fukushima” . I thought I had added a sufficient number of tags which should have attracted some interest. Unfortunately, it did not. In that article I attempted to illustrate how devastating the effects of radiation can be on even the smallest members of the food chain. Once subjected to radiation in the form of Iodine 131, low-level bacteria/algae forms Protococcus, as well as phytoplankton and seaweeds, specifically brown algae will eventually mutate and die.
The long term effects of course go all the way up the food chain effecting marine mammals the top of consumers in the ocean . The Dahl Porpoises, Western Pacific Grey Whales, and Humpback Whale( 21 marine mammal species in all which can be found in article by Whiting that follows) as top end consumers will undoubtedly be effected in the long-term if not short-term.
The news earlier this week as indicated in the article above places sand lance from waters adjacent to the Fukushima Nuclear facility to be contaminated and no longer to be sold or eaten by the public. Sand Lances are familiar to the Oregon Coast where we live. They are part of the diet of our locally famous Tufted Puffins that can be found at Haystack Rock in Cannon Beach, OR.
The consequences of this revelation mean that bottom dwellers such as the identified sand lance have picked up potentially lethal amount of radiation and for certain will transfer it to marine seabirds, marine mammals, and other sea and shore life in that region or any other consumer as well. Gray Whales in this case, those migrating along the Pacific side of Japan will be effected. As filter feeders who actually use their pectoral fins to dig up the sandy near shore bottoms in search of food, which becomes suspended, will be impacted.
This afternoon I came across this blog post by Candace Calloway, entitled, “How Japan’s Nuclear Crisis Might Affect Whales And Dolphins” . In the article she discusses the nearshore currents along this same coastal area will circulate these contaminated waters throughout the Western Pacific to eventually impact the regions beyond. Candace Whiting a volunteer at the Whale Museum located at Friday Harbor, Washington. Follow the link below to access this terrific. article
Here is another great article, WDCS International – News
The experts will claim that the dilution is a solution. I would argue just the opposite, certain organisms are bio accumulators and will certainly suffer the consequences.The only answer is the voice of the people. Oregonians ended nuclear power by the initiative process and affectively shut down our only plant, The Trojan Nuclear Plant formerly of Ranier, OR. Until answers to the storage issues are solved Oregon will have NO Nukes.
We must work to stop the building of more nuclear power plants in the U.S. Right now the government is proposing to use the $36 billion for nuclear power. Now is the time to make our voices heard, the nuclear party is over!!