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Thursday, 9 January 2014

Safecast did a follow up test and confirmed elevated radiation was found in the California beach sand

A Green Road,
8 January, 2014

We at AGRP appreciate greatly that Safecast did a follow up test and confirmed elevated radiation was found in the California beach sand, in response to initial reports issued by Rense, AGRP, and many others.

Northern California Beach Reading 412 CPM on 12/20/2013 - Fukushima Radiation Is Here!; via @AGreenRoad

The strength of Safecast is in transparent, accurate, map focused, radiation readings via Safecast Geiger Counters, like the article below explains. Safecast radiation readings performed via CITIZEN scientists is science, just the same as other citizen radiation detection networks, such as via the person who found the initial high radiation reading.

Radiation Readings From Inside Fukushima Daichi Plant Finally Revealed In Dec. 2013 - 192 USv/Hr; via @AGreenRoad

However, doing a radiation reading, and then drawing conclusions by using a comparison that all elevated radiation found on beaches with thorium are the equivalent of granite counter tops and/or airline flights is a false equivalency. This is where Safecast can quickly get in trouble, in the same way that the nuclear industry does, by doing the same thing. These three things; (thorium, granite and air flights) present entirely different radiation health risks from different directions.

An airline flight exposes one (mainly) to cosmic rays that pass through the body, and there is no residual internal dose. There are no hot particles. Granite counter tops and radon filled homes are a choice that people make that involves a radiation risk.

Beaches, sand and spray blowing around that can be inhaled present entirely different risks. Hot particles cannot be compared to granite, air flights, bananas or anything else, as Arnie Gunderson explains via the article and video in the link below.

Fukushima Pacific Ocean Radiation And How It Concentrates In Mussels, Sea Stars, Chitons, Clams, Oysters, And Fish; via @AGreenRoad

The pro nuclear industry experts claim that radiation coming from reactors such as plutonium, uranium, radium, polonium, strontium or cesium are no different from radiation in bananas or air flights, just as Safecast seems to be doing in this case.. This false equivalency has been proven false in numerous studies. Any dose of radiation is cumulative and hazardous, based on many studies, experts and scientists, as well as medical doctors.

Quotes From Famous People About Nuclear Energy And Low Dose Radiation Dangers; via @AGreenRoad

What this specific Safecast report is doing is not only doing a radiation reading, then analyzing it, (very good!) but then also drawing a conclusion, even if the conclusion is comparing apples to oranges. It is so easy to go just one tiny step further and declare that all thorium sand beaches are safe, and that all basements containing radon are also safe, because it is all NORM, (natural radiation). This conclusion seems to be following the hormesis theory.

By inference, is the Safecast report, not quoting the hormesis theory by using the word 'natural' in combination with thorium, granite and air flights? The hormesis theory has been disproven.

Hormesis; What Does Not Kill You, Is Good For You

Rachel Maddow - Hormesis Promoting Republican Art Robinson Wants To Sprinkle Radioactive Waste From Airplanes Over Cities? via @AGreenRoad

Safecast is much better off just reporting radiation numbers and findings as far as more sophisticated tests, and then let others argue about what these reading means. True neutrality is a strength, not a weakness. Either that, or choose sides. Would Safecast join the nuclear industry, or join the anti nuclear scientists? Safecast cannot have it both ways. Safecast is either one of many citizen radiation detection networks, or it is something else.

Thorium Rich Sand; Monazite - Studies Show It Increases Congenital Mutuation, Downs Syndrome, And Changes Sex Ratios; via @AGreenRoad

The problem with this particular beach is that the citizen radiation detection and monitoring system tester who found 400 CPM radiation levels in the sand had been doing this testing process for years and had found nothing beyond background. Either he is a liar and falsely reporting as a radiation monitoring detection network person, or something else may be going on.

The Safecast test done on the sand found thorium and daughter decay products. But the testing equipment may not have been set up or calibrated to find uranium or plutonium, both hard to find alpha radiation products. What was the confidence setting of the equipment? 95%, 5% or something else? Is this a gamma radiation only detection machine or can it also detect alpha?

We would encourage Safecast to perform further testing with more sensitive equipment, and use chemical tests to verify that there is no alpha radiation emitting uranium or plutonium in this beach sand sample.

Even sophisticated radiation testing equipment can 'miss' uranium or plutonium, and then report their daughter products as NORM, because they daughter products of uranium can look exactly like 'natural' thorium sand radiation signatures, just as one example. But remember, 'natural' or NORM, does not mean 'safe'.

Bottom line, let's assume that the initial tester lied. Let's assume this elevated radiation reading is from thorium and nothing else. Let's assume that the thorium comes from a rock outcropping on the beach that has been there for a Billion years.

Even with all of that assuming, is it safe to infer that a 100 - 400 CPM beach is not hazardous at all, and is the equivalent of bananas, a small granite counter or air flights, and that a house or beach with more than 100CPM of 'natural' radiation is 'safe'? Hopefully that is not what Safecast is claiming here.

Categorizing thorium exposure from blowing sand, dust and sea spray as the equivalent of flying is definitely NOT scientifically accurate, especially when it comes to radon, radium, polonium, and other daughter decay products from these 'natural' radioactive emitting elements such as thorium or radon. The EPA has found even very low levels of radon can cause lung cancer.

Because plutonium is so hard to detect and even a small nano particle or 'hot 'particle' of it can cause lung cancer, and it is a known fact that Fukushima released hundreds of pounds to tons of it, it may pay to be cautious about inferring that Fukushima has had no negative effect and that it will have no negative effect on anyone, anywhere, as the nuclear industry likes to claim.

How Dangerous Is 400-6000 Pounds Of Plutonium Nano Particle Dust Liberated By Fukushima? Via @AGreenRoad

Keep up the good work, all you Safecast citizen scientist volunteers! You are much appreciated!!! And thanks to all of the other citizen scientists out there, taking pancake detector radiation readings on everything and reporting it on Youtube or via various radiation detection networks.. Without all of you, we are left at the mercy of government and industry, and we all know where that leaves us, right?


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