Along with your shopping list, will you need to take a Geiger counter along on your next trip to the supermarket?
Not quite, but in a disturbing turn of events, a study of Pacific bluefin caught off San Diego in August last year found levels of radioactive cesium 10 times higher than in fish caught in previous years.
According to a report on Bloomberg, Stanford University researchers say their findings provide “unequivocal evidence” that the radiation came from Fukushima.
While I’m sure some will be screaming to have tuna pulled off supermarket shelves; there’s no need to panic as the researchers also state there is no threat to the health of the public.
To me the story is important though – it reminds us a nuclear accident on the scale of Fukushima affects the entire world and doesn’t go away just because it’s no longer front page headlines. Nor do incidents such as the Gulf oil spill disaster or any of a number of new incidents poisoning our planet on any given day.
I often wonder about us reaching some sort of catastrophic critical mass. Let’s say nature – or Gaia – the concept of our world being a single complex system – can recover from X incident in Y months. But X incident isn’t the only one to occur. Think of it like a very sick person with a compromised immune system who is being treated and has a prospect of recovery, but who then picks up an additional infection, then another and another. Their chances of recovery are greatly diminished.
Little by little, these contamination incidents pile the strain on our planet until a single incident, perhaps not even huge by our own perception, may be the proverbial straw that breaks the camel’s back; setting off a chain of “butterfly effect” type events.
Anyhow, rather than this post being all gloom and doom, the radioactive tuna situation also reminded me of a billboard in relation to solar power that read:
“When there’s a huge solar energy spill, it’s just called a nice day.”
Uranium vs. Thorium
Nuclear power and the environment