Although several months have passed since the devastating earthquake and tsunami occurred in Japan, the resulting nuclear power plant crisis, and the effect on the world environment is still far from over. The health risks caused by the meltdown of nuclear fuel rods in at least three reactors actually melting down will be felt for hundreds of years to come.
The Fukushima nuclear plant disaster has been a clarion call for anti-nuclear activists from all over the world. One of these activists Dr. Helen Caldicott, is not prepared to be quiet as to the impact that this latest nuclear plant disaster will have on the world environment.
Dr. Caldicott, a pediatric physician by profession and Australian by nationality, has been involved for the past 33 years in trying to make people aware of the dangers of nuclear energy.
Dr Caldicott has been awarded 20 honorary doctoral degrees and was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize by Nobel Laureate Linus Pauling. She was awarded the Lannan Foundation Prize for Cultural Freedom in 2003, and in 2006, the Peace Organisation of Australia presented her with the inaugural Australian Peace Prize “for her longstanding commitment to raising awareness about the medical and environmental hazards of the nuclear age”. The Smithsonian Institution has named her as “one of the most outstanding women of the 20th Century”.
Following the Fukushima plant disaster, Dr. Caldicott was interviewed in order to get her thoughts on the environmental affects of the meltdown of the three Fukushima reactors. Her thoughts are expressed in the following video :
What Dr. Caldicott is trying to impress upon us is that the effects of the radiation “leakage” from this disaster are ones that will not go away in a matter of months, or even years. Some forms of radiation, she says, will last for hundreds of years and will continue to cause various forms of cancer, birth defects, and other health problems for generations to come.
She compared Fukushima to the Ukraine Chernobyl nuclear accident of 1986 from which she said more than 20,000 people, many of them children, contracted thyroid cancer. She also says that 25 years later “40% of Europe is still radioactive”. A lot of the radiation expelled from Chernobyl came down in countries like Turkey, and as a result she believes that people should not eat food products like dried fruits and nuts that originate from Turkey.
Dr. Caldicott also told her listeners not to eat many foods grown in parts of Europe as well.
For those of us living in the Middle East, nuclear programs in both Israel and Iran should be a concern in regards to future nuclear “accidents”. And for countries like Jordan which is now soliciting tenders to build its first nuclear power plant, it might be wise to reconsider this type of energy option.
Read more on Fukushima and other nuclear plant issues:
Japan’s Nuclear “Dead Zone” Dogs and Cats
“Worst Case Scenario” Realized as Three Fukushima Reactors Melt Down
Japan Nuclear Meltdown Will Seriously Affect World Environment