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Elevated Radiation Claimed At Tokyo 2020 Olympic Venues

samzenpus posted about 10 months ago | from the mutant-games dept.

Earth 164

An anonymous reader writes "A citizens' group in Tokyo claims to have found elevated levels of radioactivity at 39 sporting venues earmarked for the 2020 Olympic Games. Expert and organizers are cautious about the findings but see no problem, as the levels do not pose an immediate threat to human health. From the article: '"It is difficult to have this debate unless we know for sure whether this radiation is from Fukushima or whether it is naturally occurring background radiation," said Pieter Franken, founder of the Japan office of the environmental monitoring organization Safecast."

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164 comments

Frosty Piss (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45116015)

Obviously a symptom of radiation poisoning.

Re:Frosty Piss (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45116351)

Does another nigger want to waste another mod point?

Re:Frosty Piss (1)

durrr (1316311) | about 10 months ago | (#45118607)

I see the anti-nuclear camp blending fire detectors and dusting them all over the place to ensure Fukushima is "taken as seriously as it deserves!"

I look forward (5, Funny)

Iconoc (2646179) | about 10 months ago | (#45116071)

to allow the glowing comments about the athletes.

Re:I look forward (1)

Iconoc (2646179) | about 10 months ago | (#45116079)

umm, that was supposed to be "all the glowing comments about the athletes." First post ever, FWIW.

Re:I look forward (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45116117)

And all the winning athletes will look very radiant.

Re:I look forward (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45116451)

And all the winning athletes will look very radiant.

And all the stupid puns won't make you any less of a faggot (no offense intended to gay people - fucking men in the ass is much better than this idiotic drivel).

Re:I look forward (1)

Impy the Impiuos Imp (442658) | about 10 months ago | (#45116735)

I just hope the judges will do their best to remain neutron.

Re:I look forward (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45116441)

This happens at sporting arenas? Good. At least it's happening to the most expendable portion of the population: Jocks and Jock Sniffers.

Re:I look forward (4, Funny)

todrules (882424) | about 10 months ago | (#45116495)

At least the swimmers won't have to shave their body hair. It will just fall out naturally.

Re:I look forward (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45117391)

At least the swimmers won't have to shave their body hair. It will just fall out naturally.

... along with their fingers, their toes, their limbs ...

2020 (1)

spacefight (577141) | about 10 months ago | (#45116083)

Lucky for them, 2020 is a few years away. Less lucky for them (and us), another earth-quake, breaking the spent-fuel pools and creating havoc can happen any time...

Re:2020 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45116143)

The pools didn't break during a 9.0 magnitude earthquake. The fifth most fierce ever on earth. Why should they break during a lesser earthquake?

Re:2020 (3, Informative)

flibbajobber (949499) | about 10 months ago | (#45116399)

The pools didn't break during a 9.0 magnitude earthquake. The fifth most fierce ever on earth. Why should they break during a lesser earthquake?

Because magnitude doesn't correspond all that well to forces felt at the surface.

The Christchurch, New Zealand earthquake of September 2010 was a 7.1, and the peak acceleration was 1.26g. The Feb 2011 at the same location much less energetic at "just" a 6.3, yet its peak acceleration was 2.2g (among the highest recorded in an urban area) due to most of that energy being released over just 12 seconds.

The 9.0 Fukushima earthquake OTOH was spread out over 6 minutes, so its peak acceleration was 2.99g despite it being thousands of times more energetic than Christchurch's Feb quake.

Re:2020 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45116473)

I only ever felt one quake but I was standing on the same spot the whole time. I was not accelerated anyplace, not in the usual sense of the term. I know on Slashdot when you show someone that they are ignorant about something, they'd rather assume you're stupid, but I think that's pretty shitty. Instead I will assume I am ignorant and have no idea what you mean and will ask, what does "acceleration" mean in the context of an earthquake?

Re:2020 (1)

flibbajobber (949499) | about 10 months ago | (#45116751)

I only ever felt one quake but I was standing on the same spot the whole time. I was not accelerated anyplace, not in the usual sense of the term. I know on Slashdot when you show someone that they are ignorant about something, they'd rather assume you're stupid, but I think that's pretty shitty. Instead I will assume I am ignorant and have no idea what you mean and will ask, what does "acceleration" mean in the context of an earthquake?

Back-and-forth. In any oscillation, the thing being oscillated is accelerated in one direction, and then acceleration is reversed and the subject is accelerated back in the other direction. It is a linear acceleration, but it is brief and changes direction often. The acceleration in any given direction for a simple oscillation lasts for half as long as the oscillation period (and naturally the acceleration in the opposite direction also lasts half as long).

Re:2020 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45117837)

A sinusoidal vibration is not linear.

Re:2020 (2)

flibbajobber (949499) | about 10 months ago | (#45118507)

A sinusoidal vibration is not linear.

It can be. Linear means the acceleration is in the direction of travel, i.e. the acceleration occurs in one dimension. In a straight-line "back-and-forth" system, acceleration and speed can both be considered as dimensionless (beyond having a sign, which admittedly could be considered as bending the rules of "dimensionless" slightly). Certainly they act in a single dimension.

(This is in contrast to angular acceleration, where the acceleration is perpendicular to the direction of travel.)

Since linear doesn't imply constant, this applies to sinusoidal motion to, if it were constrained along a single axis. I'm not suggesting earthquakes are constrained to a single axis; merely that strong accelerations can exist in an earthquake, yet net displacement remains near-zero.

Re:2020 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45119067)

You felt it. So had to be a force on you. The force accelerates you. A greater force will accelerate you more.

You may not feel that much force since you were likely not strongly connected to the ground.

Re:2020 (3, Insightful)

thesupraman (179040) | about 10 months ago | (#45116335)

And sadly, for them, they will be exposed to much higher levels of radiation in the aircraft flying to japan - lets hope they all take ships!

Oh, and for a bonus they can avoid eating bananas, why havnt those radioactive horrors be banned yet? think of the children!

Re:2020 (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45117521)

Sigh, more misdirection and sleight of hand from the nuclear power lobby.

The risk to health in Japan is from ingestion or inhalation of bio-accumulating particulates. Conflating these real risks with bananas and flights is unethical and misleading. You should be ashamed of yourself.

Re:2020 (0)

Deluvianvortex (2908365) | about 10 months ago | (#45117647)

well, why doesn't the article talk about that aspect then? It only talks about radiation levels in the soil. You brought that up, it has nothing to do with anything. More fearmongering from the green lobby I guess, you should be ashamed of yourself.

Re:2020 (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45118789)

Reactor derived particles are far more active, damaging and persistent internal emitters than the sources you mention.

Xrays in a plane are nothing compared to internal particles in your lungs/bones/etc

Re:2020 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45119039)

[Citation needed]

Please provide specific numbers.

Every now and then... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45116091)

...Mother Nature experiments with her creatures, giving them longer legs, sharper claws, or in this case, radioactive super powers. If she finds the changes favorable the creatures will multiply and a new race of superhumans will be created. I would not mind having super powers, would you?

Re:Every now and then... (1)

Iconoc (2646179) | about 10 months ago | (#45116111)

Should do a Slashdot Poll for Giant Mythical creatures/mutants likely to attack Japan during the 2020 Olympics.

Re:Every now and then... (1)

meerling (1487879) | about 10 months ago | (#45116269)

Are you implying that the Fukushima event was actually an RSVP for Godzilla to attend the 2020 Olympics? :D

Re:Every now and then... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45116491)

Are you implying that the Fukushima event was actually an RSVP for Godzilla to attend the 2020 Olympics? :D

No he's not because RSVP is when you RECEIVE AND RESPOND TO an invitation. He may have been replying that the Fukushima event was an invitation for Godzilla to attend the 2020 Olympics, to which Godzilla may or may not RSVP.

Ahhh, Slashdot and American culture in general: just because you're ignorant about something, why should that stop you from commenting on it anyway? Right?

Re:Every now and then... (4, Funny)

sjames (1099) | about 10 months ago | (#45116513)

Blue Oyster Cult should be hired to perform in the opening ceremony.

Re:Every now and then... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45117593)

Opening song should be Godzilla.

Re:Every now and then... (1)

todrules (882424) | about 10 months ago | (#45116515)

At least then, I might watch it.

Re:Every now and then... (1)

Sigvulcanas (3396249) | about 10 months ago | (#45116485)

That just made my day. Let's just hope they can make the giant mechs to fight the mutants off.

Re:Every now and then... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45116511)

Harness them and make them do paces at the tract. The most awesome Olympic ever!

Re:Every now and then... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45119059)

Massive Crab
Massive Damage
Massive Crab
Being based on history :D

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2g1fr5vk72M

How does it compare... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45116121)

to Utah's natural background radiation?

Re:How does it compare... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45116175)

Stop; physics doesn't sell advertisements.

Some numbers for reference. (5, Interesting)

marcansoft (727665) | about 10 months ago | (#45116197)

Using my Safecast Onyx (hi Safecast folks!) I measure ~0.32 uSv/h in Dublin, next to a granite wall (granite is everywhere around here, and naturally radioactive). The article speaks of of 0.484 uSv/h, not much higher than that. On an airplane at cruising altitude I get about 2.0uSv/h. At home I might see 0.08uSv/h, and in the middle of the street somewhere around 0.15uSv/h. *

I just visited japan and took the Safecast everywhere I went. At no point did it go significantly above what were normal background radiation readings in Dublin (not even when I was passing by Fukushima station, though admittedly that was on a high-speed train).

Radiation is everywhere. Unless you can identify the source as the Fukushima disaster, it might be perfectly normal. Even if the source is Fukushima, at low levels, at some point you have to stop worrying about it and realize that plenty of other places on Earth have higher naturally occurring background radiation.

* Rough numbers pulled from memory in CPM and converted to uSv/h using the conversion factor in the firmware source code, since my Onyx battery is dead at the moment. Take with a grain of salt.

Re:Some numbers for reference. (4, Informative)

godrik (1287354) | about 10 months ago | (#45116243)

randall munroe actually put up a fairly insightful chart of radiation levels: http://xkcd.com/radiation/ [xkcd.com]

Re:Some numbers for reference. (3, Informative)

marcansoft (727665) | about 10 months ago | (#45116287)

Somewhat amusingly, he typoed the one relevant box in there - "Extra dose to Tokyo in weeks following Fukushima accident" should probably be 40uSv (not 40mSv) if he means per person (and even then it sounds a bit high), or be in the orange chart if he means the total dose delivered to all of Tokyo.

Re:Some numbers for reference. (1)

godrik (1287354) | about 10 months ago | (#45116427)

Interesting error indeed.

Seeing the notification email in slashdot, I recognized who I had replied to. Team Twizzer seems inactive and there have been little updates to your blog. What kind of cool stuff are you up to? (Beside walking around the world and taking raidoactivity measurements.)

Re:Some numbers for reference. (2)

meerling (1487879) | about 10 months ago | (#45116307)

People forget (or conveniently ignore) that we have always lived in a radioactive world.
By the way, the radiation goes up during the day, the sun itself is radioactive.
It all needs to be taken in context rather than just setting off alarms every time you detect radiation of any kind.
Heck, YOU are radioactive. Get a geiger counter and press it too your chest, you will see an increase in the readings.

Marcansoft, that's pretty cool that you have readings from all over. Even cooler that you aren't one of the paranoid zero tolerance ignorant scaremongers. Thanks again for the info. :)

Re:Some numbers for reference. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45116423)

People forget

You're giving People excessive credit. They've never known we live in a radioactive world. They're ignorant, frightened sheeple, angry because their EBT cards "don't work."

Which is why fear mongers such as this "citizen's group" can fire off a fax filled with bullshit and make international news.

Re:Some numbers for reference. (2)

nojayuk (567177) | about 10 months ago | (#45117203)

If you had gone walkabout in Fukushima city (as I did a couple of years ago) with your Safecast you'd have seen readings of about 0.7 uSv/h at a height of 1 metre above ground, the standard distance for measuring background radiation in Japan nowadays (assuming your meter was calibrated correctly). Before the 2011 accident and release of radioisotopes from Fukushima Daiichi the figure reported for Fukushima city was about 0.04 uSv/h. The current reported value for Shinjuku in the centre of Tokyo is 0.06 uSv/h by comparison.

Re:Some numbers for reference. (3, Interesting)

marcansoft (727665) | about 10 months ago | (#45117465)

Interesting. I didn't stop at Fukushima station, but I went past it on the Shinkansen with my Onyx in the outer pocket of my backpack (obviously it won't be picking up any alpha radiation there, but still useful data). Looking closely at the logs it is possible that one spike correlates with roughly the time I'd have been in that area, though I really would have to check the times closely. The Onyx was set to log every 10 minutes so it's also possible that it just missed the interesting times. The peak readings were about 0.2uSv/h, and that wasn't near Fukushima. Tokyo averaged somewhere around 0.11 uSv/h, while Hakodate (where I stayed a couple of days) was around 0.07uSv/h.

Interestingly, my return flight hit 3.0uSv/h, higher than the first flight (I just dumped the last chunk of the log which I hadn't done yet).

These readings seem to be using the default calibration of the Onyx. I haven't delved into the details yet (the firmware is still WIP as far as I can tell), but AIUI they are supposed to come calibrated, so either the default calibration is spot on, or the firmware isn't using the calibration data, or my firmware upgrade wiped the calibration data, or the calibration data was never there. Either way, I assume the default conversion factor is good enough for rough measurements of background radiation.

Re:Some numbers for reference. (5, Funny)

Frosty Piss (770223) | about 10 months ago | (#45117713)

I just visited japan and took the Safecast everywhere I went. At no point did it go significantly above what were normal background radiation readings in Dublin...

Obviously there has been some sort of nuclear catastrophe in Dublin that your government is covering up.

Re:Some numbers for reference. (2)

MrKaos (858439) | about 10 months ago | (#45118333)

I just visited japan and took the Safecast everywhere I went.

Obviously you were concerned enough to measure if there was any imminent danger, however, it is much harder to detect something you ingest.

Radiation is everywhere. Unless you can identify the source as the Fukushima disaster, it might be perfectly normal. Even if the source is Fukushima, at low levels, at some point you have to stop worrying about it and realize that plenty of other places on Earth have higher naturally occurring background radiation

The issues is not radiation emitted, it's the radionuclides emitting them. People get hung up on radiation but it's radionuclides that behave as micronutrients in the food chain that are dangerous. They are absorbed by the metabolism and continue to be energetic within the body. This is what triggers the cancers some years later.

Using my Safecast Onyx (hi Safecast folks!) I measure ~0.32 uSv/h in Dublin, next to a granite wall (granite is everywhere around here, and naturally radioactive). The article speaks of of 0.484 uSv/h, not much higher than that. On an airplane at cruising altitude I get about 2.0uSv/h. At home I might see 0.08uSv/h, and in the middle of the street somewhere around 0.15uSv/h. *

Even if you measured everything you ate or drank it is unlikely that you would have found anything. What you would need is a device to measure the probability of ingesting stronium 90, or ceasium 131, or plutonium - 239. It's like comparing the probabilty for survival from a crash in that aircraft by measuring the difference encountered by sitting next to an emergency door.

at some point you have to stop worrying about it and realize that plenty of other places on Earth have higher naturally occurring background radiation.

That's great but it's more likely that Japan now has very high concentration of radionuclides in very specific places in the ocean or land or sea, some of that area will be producing food. The likelihood of encountering in the food chain is now higher than the initial accident because the radionuclides have propagated further up the foodchain so if you ate food in Japan the likelihood of ingesting it has increased. The longer you stay there the more you will increase your chances of a permanent dose in your body, the more times you get one of those means the probability of some sort of cancer increases. A big problem for the locals, but not really a worry for you.

So your safecast was probably as effective as an umbrella in a hailstorm. It may have protected you from some minor danger however if the big one has your number on it, you will never know.

I bet this leads to new world records... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45116161)

...in the three-eyed poll vault and a dramatic uptick in hulk-related pants shredding.

Fukushima or naturally occurring (5, Insightful)

TurtleBay (1942166) | about 10 months ago | (#45116173)

'"It is difficult to have this debate unless we know for sure whether this radiation is from Fukushima or whether it is naturally occurring background radiation" -Pieter Franken. I always find this sentiment a little odd. People care too much about if the radiation is measurably above background radiation or what the source of the radiation is. What they should care about is if the radiation is at a dangerous level. We have gotten better at measuring this stuff, so just because we can measure (very small) increases in radiation from Fukushima doesn't mean we should change our lives around it. Anything that is on the same magnitude as background radiation is pretty much safe. For example, you get increased radiation from flying in a plane because the atmosphere is much thinner. Also, natural radiation is much higher near the poles than near the equator, but nobody gets upset about this because it is "natural" like kale.

Re:Fukushima or naturally occurring (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45116295)

But the radiation from Fukushima said bad things about my mother, and I don't want to go near it!

Re:Fukushima or naturally occurring (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45116315)

Slashdot has been posting sketchy articles lately, they're becoming the CNN of the internet. Worthless babble, and it gets worse when you read the linked stories. The one thing posted on the slashdot report is the fact they said "It is difficult to have this debate unless we know for sure whether this radiation is from Fukushima or whether it is naturally occurring background radiation" and then then a commenter

"

Using my Safecast Onyx (hi Safecast folks!) I measure ~0.32 uSv/h in Dublin, next to a granite wall (granite is everywhere around here, and naturally radioactive). The article speaks of of 0.484 uSv/h, not much higher than that. On an airplane at cruising altitude I get about 2.0uSv/h. At home I might see 0.08uSv/h, and in the middle of the street somewhere around 0.15uSv/h. *

I just visited japan and took the Safecast everywhere I went. At no point did it go significantly above what were normal background radiation readings in Dublin (not even when I was passing by Fukushima station, though admittedly that was on a high-speed train).

Radiation is everywhere. Unless you can identify the source as the Fukushima disaster, it might be perfectly normal. Even if the source is Fukushima, at low levels, at some point you have to stop worrying about it and realize that plenty of other places on Earth have higher naturally occurring background radiation.

* Rough numbers pulled from memory in CPM and converted to uSv/h using the conversion factor in the firmware source code, since my Onyx battery is dead at the moment. Take with a grain of salt."

Re:Fukushima or naturally occurring (1)

icebike (68054) | about 10 months ago | (#45116319)

First you say:

What they should care about is if the radiation is at a dangerous level.

Then you say

Anything that is on the same magnitude as background radiation is pretty much safe.

So you've fallen into the same trap that you seem to deplore. Radiation near the background level puts things
in perspective without having to quote specific numbers.

Re:Fukushima or naturally occurring (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 9 months ago | (#45119137)

Fine, any exposure below 100mSv have been proven to be safe. (No signs of negative health impact, cancer risk or other.)
Japan have evacuated large areas around the Fukushima reactor just to be safe, this means that people who could have lived safely in their homes had to move.

Re:Fukushima or naturally occurring (1)

mikael (484) | about 10 months ago | (#45116557)

Apparently, scientists in Japan are extremely concerned that Japanese users of Twitter are frequently reporting spontaneous nosebleeds.

http://www.infowars.com/thousands-of-japanese-report-nosebleeds-in-health-scare/ [infowars.com]

Though mysteriously, there is no report of bleeding gums or falling out hair.

Smartphones (1)

Capsaicin (412918) | about 10 months ago | (#45117473)

Apparently, scientists in Japan are extremely concerned that Japanese users of Twitter are frequently reporting spontaneous nosebleeds.

Is it only Twitter causing nosebleeds or are other social media site users presenting similarly?

Re:Fukushima or naturally occurring (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45118187)

they're just getting punched to the face.

Re:Fukushima or naturally occurring (3, Insightful)

AK Marc (707885) | about 10 months ago | (#45116745)

I always find this sentiment a little odd. People care too much about if the radiation is measurably above background radiation or what the source of the radiation is.

There's nothing we can do about background radiation. It's coming from the radiation in the rocks and such. The only way to get away from that is move, and even then, you'll end up to other radiation.

There is no such thing as "safe" radiation, so eliminating all man-made causes is a good thing, even if the levels are lower than background in some areas.

Re:Fukushima or naturally occurring (1, Flamebait)

i (8254) | about 10 months ago | (#45117145)

There is no such thing as "safe" radiation, so eliminating all man-made causes is a good thing, even if the levels are lower than background in some areas.

Source (with proof!) ?

Re:Fukushima or naturally occurring (1)

Deluvianvortex (2908365) | about 10 months ago | (#45117755)

What about radio waves or visible light? That's radiation too. methinks you didn't think about what you were saying before you posted it.

Re:Fukushima or naturally occurring (3, Insightful)

greg_barton (5551) | about 10 months ago | (#45118057)

There is no such thing as "safe" radiation

Horse shit. If that were true all life on Earth would have been wiped out long ago.

Re:Fukushima or naturally occurring (1)

ArsonSmith (13997) | about 10 months ago | (#45118355)

Perhaps not safe, but there is no such thing as a harmless amount of radiation. Life has built up a tolerance to a certain amount but even that is only over relatively short periods of time. "Safe" was probably not the right term as it is safe at levels we can heal faster than the damage it is doing.

Re:Fukushima or naturally occurring (1)

greg_barton (5551) | about 10 months ago | (#45118441)

Perhaps not safe, but there is no such thing as a harmless amount of radiation. Life has built up a tolerance to a certain amount

You instantly contradict yourself in your first sentence. Congrats!

If we tolerate it, it is by definition harmless. If low level radiation over time was harmful then residents of Denver would be dropping like flies. (Higher background radiation there from the high altitude.)

Re:Fukushima or naturally occurring (1)

AK Marc (707885) | about 10 months ago | (#45118653)

If it causes cancer at age 100, was it "safe" or sufficiently delayed that we can consider it harmless?

Re:Fukushima or naturally occurring (1)

AK Marc (707885) | about 10 months ago | (#45118711)

It kills us all, but slow enough we have time to reproduce. It's also "helpful" in that it pushes mutations that lead to evolution. It's required for life, but that doesn't mean it isn't harmful.

Re:Fukushima or naturally occurring (1)

greg_barton (5551) | about 10 months ago | (#45118723)

Sorry, it does not kill us all. You'll have to provide some proof for that extraordinary claim.

Re:Fukushima or naturally occurring (1)

AK Marc (707885) | about 10 months ago | (#45118855)

My proof is that there is nobody alive older than 200.

Re:Fukushima or naturally occurring (2)

greg_barton (5551) | about 10 months ago | (#45118925)

Telomeres.

Re:Fukushima or naturally occurring (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45118221)

There is no such thing as "safe" radiation, so eliminating all man-made causes is a good thing, even if the levels are lower than background in some areas.

How's living in a giant Faraday cage working out for you?

P.S. did you know that fire, as in burning wood logs, generates significant levels of radiation? Also, food is naturally radioactive. Ironically, healthy fresh food tends to be more radioactive than processed crap, funny that.

Re:Fukushima or naturally occurring (0)

AK Marc (707885) | about 10 months ago | (#45118663)

I knew all that, and yet my comment still stands. I give myself potassium radiation poisoning every time I eat a banana. I can understand and recognize a risk. Call it a risk, and yet choose to accept that risk and live risky anyway.

Re:Fukushima or naturally occurring (4, Informative)

TheLink (130905) | about 9 months ago | (#45119119)

There is no such thing as "safe" radiation, so eliminating all man-made causes is a good thing, even if the levels are lower than background in some areas.

Citation please? I give you mine:
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2663584/ [nih.gov]

In many places where the background radiation is higher but still at "safe" levels it doesn't seem to be killing people faster. In fact in some places they seem to live longer! Yes it could be due to other factors (diet, lifestyle), but it just shows that at those levels the radiation no longer significantly reduces your lifespan.

Re:Fukushima or naturally occurring (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45116791)

I only buy 100% organic free range radiation, and so far all of my cysts have been benign!

Natural or accident-related? (0)

Brett Buck (811747) | about 10 months ago | (#45116177)

Why do we care whether its from background or not? The only thing that matters is whether it will cause significant harm to anyone. If you can't tell the difference, it's probably entirely irrelevant in terms of health effects.

          Brett

Re:Natural or accident-related? (1)

djupedal (584558) | about 10 months ago | (#45116291)

'anyone'?

Maybe not if your history shows low exposure in general. Maybe if you exceeded safe levels/limits years ago (that would be me). Now, if you can be more specific, and avoid general 'anyone', you might get an answer you can use. In the mean time, and just to be safe, all low-information questioners are advised to get back on the other side of the Police tape and we'll let you know if anything changes.

Re:Natural or accident-related? (1)

sjames (1099) | about 10 months ago | (#45116539)

So I guess you avoid Colorado?

Lots of things to avoid (1)

Overzeetop (214511) | about 10 months ago | (#45116665)

And planes. And travelling significantly north or south toward the poles. And granite (mountains, countertops, building facades).

Re:Lots of things to avoid (1)

Deluvianvortex (2908365) | about 10 months ago | (#45117761)

and radio and tv, and open skies, and halogen bulbs, and..

New proposal. (2, Insightful)

SuricouRaven (1897204) | about 10 months ago | (#45116201)

All stories about radiation not intended for a specialist audience should measure radiation levels in 'bananas/year.'

Re:New proposal. (1)

Molochi (555357) | about 10 months ago | (#45116387)

Yeah as BPY or as a relative value to exposure in Denver per Year.

Re:New proposal. (3, Insightful)

nickersonm (1646933) | about 10 months ago | (#45116887)

The highest reading mentioned in the article, 0.484uS/hr, is approximately 1.07 Denver, or 0.96 Boulder. Exact values are hard to find, but it seems Denver is around 4mSv/year, and Boulder is ~4.5mSv/year, which is about .45 and .5 uSv/hr.

Re:New proposal. (1)

NoKaOi (1415755) | about 10 months ago | (#45118825)

The highest reading mentioned in the article, 0.484uS/hr, is approximately 1.07 Denver, or 0.96 Boulder. Exact values are hard to find, but it seems Denver is around 4mSv/year, and Boulder is ~4.5mSv/year, which is about .45 and .5 uSv/hr.

Ah, but the important question is: What type of radiation is it? Are we talking about Scary Radiation, or natural, USDA Certified Organic radiation (which has no chemicals!)? Since the .484uSv/hr is in Japan, which is the same country Fukushima is in, then it is 100% Scary Radiation. The radiation in Denver and Boulder is natural, certified organic radiation, so it has 0 uS/hr of Scary Radiation by comparison. Also keep in mind that most of the athletes probably have cell phones, which also emit significant amounts of Scary Radiation. Multiply these two sources of Scary Radiation together, and we're talking about a death sentence for all of the athletes.

Re:New proposal. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45117331)

Bananas != gamma.

Hey it is Japan after all (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45116263)

So what's a little more rads here and there anyway. The tidal wave killed more than the failed reactors (20000 versus 0). These acts of god need to be addressed first and foremost.

So we can't have a debate than (4, Insightful)

DarkOx (621550) | about 10 months ago | (#45116285)

It is difficult to have this debate unless we know for sure whether this radiation is from Fukushima or whether it is naturally occurring background radiation

For anyone considering going then you can't know, and at this point it matters little what anyone says. There have been so many denials, and incorrect information put out by TEPCO and the government there how could anyone trust anything they say now?

Why bother - they're expendable anyway (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45116685)

Why should we care, really? Thousands of dollars to get there, thousands of dollars to stay, thousands of dollars to see the events. There are only two kinds of people there - (1) athletes who are sucking off the generosity of others and producing nothing but entertainment and (2) very rich people. I'm going to just tick off both of those boxes as expendable.

Here's the letter and data (5, Informative)

evilsofa (947078) | about 10 months ago | (#45116361)

This appears to be the letter and the data that started all this:

http://olympicsokuteikai.web.fc2.com/encontents.html [fc2.com]

Perhaps the most crucial part of the letter is this:

"Just before the Fukushima power plant accident, the mean value of the atmospheric radiation in Tokyo was estimated as 0.04 Sv/h, and radioactive Cesium was almost non-existent. Therefore, atmospheric radiation value above this level can be regarded as the effect of the nuclear accident."

Is that a valid assumption?

Re:Here's the letter and data (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45116563)

Obviously other contributors could be a cause as well, but I'd accept it as a probable cause. The real question to me would be are the levels higher (and by how much) than Salt Lake City,.which AFAIK hosted without Rad warnings attached. I believe Denver is in the running for 2022.

It might be noted, however, that most of the food you would consume here in SLC is imported from less irradiated spots on earth.

Re:Here's the letter and data (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 10 months ago | (#45116655)

A great deal of the food you would consume in Japan is also imported from less irradiated spots on earth. But the fish...

Re:Here's the letter and data (0)

Goaway (82658) | about 10 months ago | (#45116737)

Not really. You'd need at least a measurement at each site before and after, as background levels will vary from place to place. And even so, they also vary with time.

And if your readings are so low that you have to subtract out the natural background to see them, they are pretty much harmless anyway.

OMG! The possibility! (4, Insightful)

Okian Warrior (537106) | about 10 months ago | (#45116417)

Once again, possibility is not the same as probability.

Yes, it's possible that the elevated radiation levels will cause problems. Now, what's the risk, and what's the tradeoff between mitigating *that* risk versus mitigating some *other* risk?

Security is a tradeoff, always. The value of something is not the face value, but the face value times the probability of occurrence.

So if the probability of damage (say, the number of people getting cancer from going to the event) times the value of damage (taken informally as $1 million per human life lost, but depends on estimates and philosophy) is higher than other foreseeable risks, then we should address the problem.

Risks shouldn't be ignored, just compared to other risks. If the utility losses for other risks are higher, then we should spend our finite resources on the other risks first.

How much risk utility is embodied in this problem compared to, say dying from accidentally swallowing (and choking on) a bee?

...but journalism must sell news. I suppose someone swallowing something wouldn't be very interesting.

Re:OMG! The possibility! (1)

TubeSteak (669689) | about 10 months ago | (#45117781)

Once again, possibility is not the same as probability.

Dude, they found Cesium-137 where none was previously known to exist.
AFAIK it doesn't naturally occur and we only get it as a byproduct of nuclear reactors and nuclear weapons

Risks shouldn't be ignored, just compared to other risks. If the utility losses for other risks are higher, then we should spend our finite resources on the other risks first.

How much risk utility is embodied in this problem compared to, say dying from accidentally swallowing (and choking on) a bee?

One of my friends got stung, by a bee, on his tongue.
He was lucky enough to get medical attention before the swelling choked him to death.
Even luckier, he got that medical attention before the doctors would have had to cut a hole in throat.

It's almost like you've never heard the expression "an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure"
Avoiding exposure to radiation is better than cancer and chemo-therapy.

Attention Slashdot Readers REPUBLICANS CAVE! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45116425)

And all that for nothing. What a bunch of spineless pussies those screwballs are. If you went this far and fucked with every single american, at least stay the night and have breakfast! Running away in the middle of the night just makes you - the House Republican - a pussy.

Huh? (3, Insightful)

sjames (1099) | about 10 months ago | (#45116471)

'"It is difficult to have this debate unless we know for sure whether this radiation is from Fukushima or whether it is naturally occurring background radiation,"

So as long as it's natural it doesn't matter how strong it is but if it's from the plant then any amount is too much? I wasn't aware that natural radiation was safer than man-made radiation, when did that memo come out?

Re:Huh? (2)

ArsonSmith (13997) | about 10 months ago | (#45118381)

I specialize in holistic radiation treatment. Good naturally occurring radiation is much better for you than anything man made.

Documentary available (1)

gmhowell (26755) | about 10 months ago | (#45116621)

Saw a documentary once [imdb.com] about this irradiated Japanese Olympic sight. Don't worry about extra drug testing, but DO bring along your targetting device for your space laser.

Re:Documentary available (1)

bejiitas_wrath (825021) | about 10 months ago | (#45117347)

The SOL laser will be ready by then, but Gamera is still not ready.

Luckily we got a Cobalt 60 half life (2)

bubblegoose (473320) | about 10 months ago | (#45116921)

If I remember by Navy nuclear training correctly, the half life of Cobalt 60 is 5.27 years and it is one of the largest sources of radiation from fission decay products. It's a half off sale, take those measurements and lower them by 50% folks!

Review The Evidence (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45117291)

I would say the evidence must be reviewed and evaluated and considered regarding the upcoming Olympic Games event.

Just do it.

Olympic mascot (1)

altgeek (557342) | about 10 months ago | (#45117749)

I think the a three-eyed fish mascot named "Isotoppu" would be appropriate.

c08 (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45117905)

Who seel another

The hard decisions (1)

Tablizer (95088) | about 10 months ago | (#45118639)

Will 3-legged mutants be allowed to participate in the games?

They kicked out Rudolf for having an iridescent nose.

radioactive particles (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 10 months ago | (#45118779)

Inside your body these radioactive particles which cause the reading, are 'no immediate threat'. Until you develop cancer.

They think people are stupid.

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