Recently, we highlighted the plight of residents around the Fukashima nuclear disaster sight in Japan. Currently, they are dealing with an unprecedented threat in the form of radioactive boar. Of course, while they try to deal with this confusing situation, a new development from the original nuclear meltdown site, Chernobyl, might raise some more concerns in the future. In an independent test performed by the Associated Press (AP), the internal analysis that has been identifying certain milk as safe to drink may actually be endangering everyone around the meltdown site.
Long before the tsunami and earthquakes that devastated Japan and impacted their Fukashima nuclear plant, Russia got an unfortunate taste of just how serious radiation could really be. The historic disaster on April 26, 1986 cost the lives of 31 people in the short term and long-term effects are still not fully clear. Thirty years later, it is still considered the worst nuclear disaster in history looking at casualties and monetary damage; it also happens to be the only other Level 7 (the most serious classification) event. Originally, the cause of this disaster was attributed to operator error, but later on that report was revised and it was indicated that the overall design was flawed. To this day, there is still some doubt about which might be the real reason.
Regardless of what caused the meltdown, there are a variety of challenges that residents around the meltdown site are still facing today. One of those challenges most recently brought to life is that the citizens may actually be consuming radioactive milk. Despite various tests performed over the years by Milkavita, the local dairy producer, a new study by the AP shows that there may be a dangerous quantity of strontium-90 found in the milk from one of the large farms bordering Chernobyl.
According to this study, which was tested at the state-run Minsk Centre of Hygiene and Epidemiology, the safe level of this radioactive isotope should not exceed 3.7 becquerels (a unit of measurement for radiation) per kilogram of food or drink. In this particular study, they actually found 37.5 becquerels per kilogram, which, for those who are math illiterate, is 10 times the safe limit. In other words, those drinking this are consuming radioactive milk that could be linked to cancer and cardiovascular disease.
While these findings need to be verified with additional testing, they do raise some serious concerns for anyone around this disaster zone. Even 30 years later, the people of Russia are dealing with the ill effects of this serious meltdown. For those living around Fukashima and dealing with radioactive boar, it is important to remember that this likely won’t be the last of their troubles. Instead, they also might have to deal with radioactive milk down the line, and who knows what else could follow.