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Olaf Kathaus’ Nov. 3 letter, “Nonsense from a poison pen,” is right and wrong on certain points. I agree that claiming that populations worldwide will be vastly affected by the Fukushima nuclear disaster is far-fetched. I once read at a semi-reliable Internet site that “hundreds of millions” will die from Fukushima! Nonsense.

But Kalthaus also claims that only 4,000 people got cancer from the Chernobyl accident (April 1986), whereas an authoritative book by Alexey Yablokov et al., published by the New York Academy of Sciences, put the number at nearly a million deaths worldwide. This is quite different from the estimate by the International Atomic Energy Agency, an organization with a strong bias toward promoting nuclear power and downplaying its dangers.

Hundreds of thousands of people in Fukushima will be affected by the amount of external and internal radiation that was and continues to be released. Further, a study by Marco Kalfoten, a toxicologist in Massachusetts, measured “hot particles” found on car air filters and found that Fukushima had high rates of cesium and other radio nuclides. Tokyo had noticeable amounts as well, while samples taken in Seattle had no noticeable particles. This means that, in March and April, radioactive particles were in the air and people in the Kanto region were presumably breathing them in and wiping them on their bodies as they walked around outside.

This information was not revealed by the government but by independent researchers and scientists, proving again that obfuscation is the name of the game for the nuclear power industry.

The opinions expressed in this letter to the editor are the writer’s own and do not necessarily reflect the policies of The Japan Times.

richard wilcox

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