Yet another weird SF fan


I'm a mathematician, a libertarian, and a science-fiction fan. Common sense? What's that?

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Yet another weird SF fan
 

Saturday, February 02, 2013

An Imaginary Scandal

The fact that Japan revised its radioactivity standards for material sent to landfills is being treated as a scandal:

The government insists that its radiation limits ensure that the program will pose no health risks to surrounding residents. Those limits, however, have been significantly relaxed since the disaster at Fukushima. Radioactivity is measured by becquerel per kilogram, or bq/kg. Previously, Japanese regulations required nuclear waste with 100 or more bq/kg of Cesium to be monitored and disposed of in specialized containers. But the new limit for debris in the "wide area incineration" program is 240 to 480 bq/kg. Because radioactive particles accumulate and concentrate in the ash of burned rubble, the material headed for local landfills could be significantly more radioactive. The new government limit for material headed for landfills is 8000 bq/kg, 80 times the pre-Fukushima
limit.

Some people are even more hysterical.

On the other hand, plain ordinary potassium chloride has an activity level of 16.4 Bq/g or 16,400 Bq/kg. Presumably it is illegal to throw out unused KCl pills in Japan.

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