LETTER: Fukushima fallout downplayed

Dear Editor:

Not to dash the efforts of David Gagnon too vociferously (WV Radiation Levels to be Tested, April 27), but measuring for the presence of cesium 134 and 137 in our ocean water at this point is a case of too little, too late.

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Measuring for radioactive material that escaped from Fukushima's nuclear reactors began with SFU professor Kris Starosta on March 18, 2011. He took seaweed samples at the Lonsdale Quay shoreline and measured for radioisotopes for seven days until March 25 and then abruptly stopped. In each of the days between the 18th and the 25th the becquerel levels steadily rose.

So why cease the sampling? Plutonium was measured outside the reactors so why hasn't testing for plutonium been conducted in our country? Our government and Health Canada have been announcing repeatedly that there are safe amounts of cesium, etc. in our environment with no hard numbers to back up that claim.

This disservice to citizens has been evasive and disingenuous and smacks of special interests.

The well-being of the nuclear industry is clearly more important than that of the average living creature.

As I read the article in the North Shore News, I felt, yet again, the whole catastrophe is being downplayed.

The expectation that the readings for cesium 134 and 137 will be low in West Vancouver only serves to confuse and placate the general public.The world is at a critical turning point with respect to continued use of nuclear energy. Japan is about to recommission its reactors and (corrupt governments) around the world are on the verge of building new plants. The idea of "mini-reactors" as a safe alternative is being promoted. A former mayor of a town near to the devastated nuclear plants has justspoken out about the continuing effects to human health in his region.

The government and mass media won't react. Not that anyone wants to hear the truth. It's just too scary.

Robert Partridge

North Vancouver

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