It would be prudent to be reasonably
sure your place is environmentally safe and clean, especially if
you have children. Having a lab test the water to see what is in
it I think is very important. You don't want radon or leached pesticides
and herbicides like Roundup and 2,4D
winding up in your water and food. This maybe a possible issue if
your place is an old farm, ranch or homestead. I've seen my neighbor
years ago heavily applying 2,4D in an effort to kill Knapweed. That
chemical is one of the main ingredient of Agent Orange and some
batches were known to contain dioxin. Agent
Orange is still causing devastating damage to the American soldiers
who handled the chemical and to the people and ecology of South
East Asia where it was sprayed.
Another environmental concern is radon.
The geology of Eastern Washington have known elevated levels of
one of the daughter products from the natural decay of uranium.
The highest levels are found in the northern counties bordering
Canada. Inactive uranium mines in the Spokane Indian tribal land
at Wellpinit have become part of EPA superfund
cleanup sites. Radon is estimated by the EPA to cause 21000
lung cancer deaths per year in the US, second only to cancer from
To add to these concerns is the ongoing
disaster in Japan with their March 2011 multiple nuclear reactor
meltdowns which is still out of control and releasing tremendous
amounts of radiation both into the atmosphere and the Pacific Ocean.
Due to the news and information suppression of this event by governments
and main stream news, there is no clear picture presented to the
public. Ironic considering the event is considered by experts
to be the greatest industrial accident in human history. Instead
information must be cobbled together from web sites like the ones
below. Reminiscent of the handling of the Deep Water Horizon disaster
in the Gulf.
Breaking news updates, discussions and links about the Fukushima
nuclear plant events. Clipped headline format lends to more speculation
but usually has the latest nuclear news. The forum discussion threads
are pretty interesting, especially the one about the live Fukushima
Based in Santa Monica CA. A good consolidator of nuclear news and
posts the latest local radiation readings. The postings give a good
idea about what's going on even if you do not live in Southern California.
Summarized findings and observations about the Fukushima earthquake
and Nuclear Plant disaster by a Japanese blogger. Excellent site.
Fairewinds Associates Excellent
video presentations of nuclear plant safety issues by a retired
American nuclear engineer.
Much of this
released radiation is being carried by the prevailing jet stream
east over the Pacific directly to North America en route to the
rest of the world. In an event called "rain out" precipitation
attaches and carries the radioactive particles down to earth as
"fall out" causing localized "hotspots".
To where this unfortunate convergence
of wind, radioactive plume and precipitation will occur is determined
mostly by sheer chance. With the weather seemingly becoming more
erratic and unpredictable there will be no truly safe locations
to move to. None the less you probably do not want to be down wind
from a reactor or at least be 150 miles away. Check the real time
radiation map of US at Radiation
Radiation monitoring with a dosimeter
is a good idea, as stated earlier especially if you have children.
It has been statistically proven that children are the most susceptible
to radiation damage. Nuclear experts such as Gundersen
at Fairewinds have been advising people to wash produce before eating.
One should be careful about eating certain food that tend to bio
accumulate or concentrate radiation, like milk, seaweed, mushrooms
and others. The important fact to keep in mind is that the US National
Academy of Sciences has in 2005 declared that there is no
safe dose of radiation. The big danger is inadvertent ingestion
level dose by children where ionized particles become internal
Inverse Square Law applies here and particles actually attached
to internal cells do damage in the order of magnitudes more than
an external dose from 1" away.
Snow CPM readings Feb. 26 2012 Spokane WA |
Kitchen counter CPM reading Feb 23 2012 Spokane
So my understanding is that the readings around
here are close to normal, considering the high radon levels naturally
present. Since that can abruptly change for the worse at any time
I check after significant precipitation.
pictured above was purchased by me through Amazon in 2011.