1/3 of the world or the Pacific Oceans is believed to be contaminated by the nuclear disaster in Fukushima.
In the region near the Pacific Ocean the International Atomic Energy Agency has established an agreement between the member states in order to promote a peaceful use of nuclear energy. This agreement was established after the disaster in Fukushima in 2011, when there was an earthquake after a tsunami. The earthquake disabled the cooling and power supply of three reactors, which lead to a big nuclear accident. This accident caused a lot of radioactive material to leak into the Pacific Ocean.
Consequently, the countries near the Pacific Ocean got concerned for the environment and the economy of their states. The agreement between the countries was to monitor the presence of the radioactive material in the Pacific Ocean.
The first review meeting of the members was held in 2012. Their predictions came true. The Kuroshio Current, a strong current in the Pacific Ocean, was able to move the radioactive materials across the ocean towards east. Fortunately, the presence of the radioactive substances was lower than predicted.
However, even if the radioactivity was low, it was still present. The members remain concerned about contamination of seafood from the ocean. The monitoring therefore decided to supervise the seafood that came from this region. They checked whether the food is safe for consumption as the side-effects could be devastating.
The ultimate conclusion of this project should be published this year. However, according to their research from 2014, a radioactive element called cesium was discovered in two samples of seafood.
Even more recent research, showed cesium-137 and cesium-134 in samples that were collected in Vancouver Island, British Columbia. This research was not done by the International Atomic Energy Agency. However, the researchers believe that the radioactive substances probably come from the leak in the Fukushima disaster. This research detected the presence of cesium-134 in North America for the first time.
Even though the amounts of radioactive materials are not above the permitted level, they should not be underestimated.
Exposure to small amounts of radioactivity is not completely harmless and the materials can travel with the sea. Monitoring must continue to be conducted and the levels must remain at zero.
The authorities even believe that radioactive substances should continue to be dumped at sea. The contamination must be controlled and monitored. Every single fish that is caught must be tested.
The plant and the authorities must think of the consequences before dumping more waste. It can affect the economy, the environment and the health of the people in the region, as well as the people all around the world.