Fukushima Fish Still Contaminated

rsz_fukushima_port_2011Asahi Shimbun published a fairly misleading article last week where they claimed radiation in Fukushima fish was not detected. This was based on 17 days worth of fish testing by the prefecture government where they claimed to Asahi Shimbun that all samples tested below detection. We attempted to obtain a statement from Asahi Shimbun but received no reply as of publication here.

Per the article:

Radiation in all seafood caught off Fukushima Prefecture tested below the detectable level in November for the first time since the 2011 nuclear disaster.

Species including bass, rockfish and stone flounder–sales of which were banned by the central government–were tested between Nov. 11 and Nov. 28, and the prefectural government said they all fell below the detection threshold, meaning radioactive cesium was not detected in any samples.

A couple of key points in their choice of words:

  • Radiation in all seafood caught off Fukushima Prefecture
  • tested between Nov. 11 and Nov. 28
  • the prefectural government said they all fell below the detection threshold, meaning radioactive cesium was not detected in any samples.

We found the reporting site for Fukushima prefecture’s fish testing

The results for the weeks mentioned (also results to December 7) can be found here
(translated to English via Google translate and archived to pdf)

The tests from the prefecture do not have a test date. They only include a sample collection date and the date the data was released. Fish collected and tested with both dates within this date range cited in the article do show detected radioactive (cesium) contamination. These include fish hauled to the towns of Iwaki, Hirono and Okuma, all three are Pacific fishing ports. The contaminated fish include flounder, kurodai (black sea bream), kanagashira and kurosoi (black rock fish) all saltwater fish.

We also found a story released around the same time that documented a civic radiation testing group found 14.6 bq/kg of cesium in a sample of olive flounder that was caught about 2 km from Fukushima Daiichi.

TEPCO is also still finding fish with contamination within the 20 km area near the plant site. This report is from October 2016. Link to report

 

 

 

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