JAPAN MELTDOWN: Ocean too huge, distance too far for concern.
Published: April 17th, 2011 08:31 PM
Last Modified: April 17th, 2011 08:32 PM
North Pacific fish are so unlikely to be contaminated by radioactive material from the crippled nuclear plant in Japan that there's no reason to test them, state and federal officials said this week.
Even with dangerous levels of radiation reported recently just off the coast from the Fukushima reactor complex, the ocean is so huge and Alaska fisheries so far away that there is no realistic threat, said FDA spokeswoman Siobhan DeLancey. The Food and Drug Administration has oversight of the nation's food supplies.
The state's food safety program manager, Ron Klein of the Department of Environmental Conservation, said the FDA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration have demonstrated that Alaskans have no cause for worry.
"Based on the work they're doing, no sampling or monitoring of our fish is necessary," he said.
It's now a little more than a month into the nuclear crisis, and Japanese officials believe they have plugged the major leak that allowed tons of water containing highly radioactive isotopes of iodine and cesium to flow into the sea. Radiation levels went down after the alarming reports last week that they had risen to millions of times the legal limits, though on Saturday officials said the levels were rising again.
Read more: http://www.adn.com/2011/04/16/1813982/fda-claims-no-need-to-test-pacific.html#ixzz1Jtw7Es2n