Sunday, April 10, 2011

#Radiation: Ministry of Education to Set Radiation Limit for School Yards in Fukushima

Yomiuri (4/10/2011) reports that the Ministry of Education (full name is ridiculously long, and it is "Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology) is about to set the limit on radiation level in school yards in kindergartens and elementary schools in Fukushima Prefecture.

It will be based on the maximum allowed radiation per year for pupils,
at 20 milli-sievert/year.

20 milli-sievert/year was the maximum permissible dose to radiation workers averaged over five years, with a maximum of 50 mSv in any one year (see wiki), until Fukushima I Nuke Plant accident happened.

From Yomiuri Shinbun: (4/10/2011):


The Ministry of Education is about to set the standard for the amount of radiation when children engage in outdoor activities in kindergartens and schools, such as in the school yards.


In Fukushima Prefecture, relatively high levels of radiation and radioactive materials have been detected in some schools, and the Ministry has decided it is necessary to set the standard soon for deciding whether to allow outdoor activities such as physical education.

  同省などによると、基準は、児童生徒の年間被曝(ひばく)許容量を20ミリ・シーベルト(2万マイクロ・シーベルト)として、一般的な校庭の使用時間など を勘案して算定する方針。原子力安全委員会の助言を得た上で、大気中の線量基準などを同県に示す。基準を超えた場合、校庭を使用禁止にし、授業を屋内だけ に限るなどの措置をとる案も出ている。

According to the Ministry and other sources, the new radiation standard will take into account the typical amount of time when the schoolyards are in use, and will be based on the allowed radiation amount of 20 milli-sievert (20,000 micro-sievert) per year for children. After receiving the advice from the Nuclear Safety Commission, the Ministry will show [among others] the radiation standard for the air to the Fukushima Prefectural government. One idea is to prohibit the use of school yards and conduct classes only indoors when the limit is exceeded.


Anonymous said...

Since Fukushima failed, the Japanese government and TEPCO have obscured the danger of the Fukushima crisis—and it is a crisis. The word "safe" has been tossed about loosely. Unfortunately, when it comes to radiation, there's no such thing.!5786486/theres-no-such-thing-as-safe-radiation

Anonymous said...

A May 2006 report from ACRO Laboratory shows that radiactive tritium has been leaking into the underground aquifers used by farmers in Normandy, France The source is the nuclear waste disposal facility at la Hague, the Centre Stockage de la Manche (CSM), which processes nuclear waste. In general, tritium contamination is regarded s a good tracer for anticipating future contamination from other radionuclides in the dumpsite. These include strontium, cesium and plutonium, all cancer causing radionuclides.

M. Simon said...

Even if that was allowable for adults it is ridiculously high for children. However, it IS the International standard. Which is something.

arevamirpal::laprimavera said...

What kind of country is it that would be so willing to tell 5 year olds that it is totally OK if they are irradiated extra 20 milli-sievert/year?

Oh it's a country that told 5-year-olds that plutonium was so safe.

Makes me sick.

M. Simon said...

Let us put this in context and not get too hysterical. The average background radiation on earth is 2 mSv. The average for a US citizen (all sources) is 6 mSv a year. So the allowable dose for Japan is only about 3X what the average American gets. I'd set it a little lower than that for children say 12 mSv a year. But the allowable dose is not the end of the world.

And you also have to take into account what the situation would be like without electricity. Life expectancy would be much shorter. It is a trade off.

Here is my design criteria (which can be met) for nuclear power:

People Are Not Rational

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