[ RadSafe ] RPHP strikes again ...

Jim Hardeman Jim_Hardeman at dnr.state.ga.us
Wed Jul 27 15:52:52 CDT 2005

Colleagues *
It seems that our friends Joe Mangano, Jay Gould and Ernest Sternglass, Rosalie Bertell, John Gofman et al. with Radiation and Public Health Project (aka "Standing for Truth against Radiation", the "Tooth Fairy Project", etc.) are at it again ... this time at Plant Vogtle in Georgia.
In today's e-mail I received a copy of a media release, as reproduced below.
My office in the Georgia Environmental Protection Division (Environmental Radiation Program) has been performing independent environmental monitoring in the area around Savannah River Site (SRS) and Plant Vogtle since the mid-1970's. With a few minor exceptions involving liquid effluents, we have seen no radioactive materials in the environment that could be attributed to the operation of Plant Vogtle.
I know some of you have had experience in dealing with these folks. Any pointers would be GREATLY appreciated. Unless you think it would be helpful for the list at large, please respond to my private e-mail.
To quote Samuel Clemens (aka Mark Twain) "there are lies, damned lies and statistics".
Jim Hardeman, Manager
Environmental Radiation Program
Environmental Protection Division
Georgia Department of Natural Resources
4220 International Parkway, Suite 100
Atlanta, GA 30334
(404) 362-2675
Fax: (404) 362-2653
E-mail: Jim_Hardeman at dnr.state.ga.us
P.S. Please respond by e-mail, as I am out of the office until at least Monday, August 8.
Text of RPHP Media Release
"Introduction.  The Vogtle 1 and 2 nuclear reactors in Waynesboro Georgia achieved initial criticality (began producing nuclear fission products) on March 1, 1987 and March 9, 1989, respectively.  A few months after criticality, the reactors went commercial, i.e. began producing electricity for sale. No tracking has been done on health trends for persons living near Vogtle since the plant began operations and added radioactivity to the local environment.  A 1990 study by the National Cancer Institute on cancer near nuclear plants covered only those reactors that began prior to 1982. By using official mortality data on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention web site (http://wonder.cdc.gov, underlying cause of death), short-term and long-term trends in death rates for Burke County, where Vogtle is located, have been examined.  Burke County has a population of just under 23,000.  Just over half of its residents are black; its poverty level is more than double state and national averages; and its educational level are well below U.S. and Georgia standards.  Thus, Burke County can be considered a high-risk area. Short Term Trends.  Burke County mortality for the three years prior to plant startup (1985-87 were compared to the following three years (1988-90).  The persons most susceptible to the harmful effects of radiation exposure are infants, children, and young adults.  The death rate jumped 70.1% (16 to 28 deaths) for age 0-1; 103.1% (2 to 4 deaths) for age 1-19; and 78.6% (7 to 12 deaths) for age 20-34.  The corresponding rates in Georgia were virtually unchanged. The sudden and dramatic rise in deaths just after Vogtle began operating should be more fully examined. Long Term Trends.  From 1982-90 to 1991-02, the death rate from all cancers in Burke County rose 24.2%, while the same rate fell 1.4% for Georgia.  The average number of cancer deaths among county residents, which was about 34 in the 1980s is now 43.  Unusual rises occurred for both white and black residents (Table 3).  Again, such an unusual change after fission products were added to the environment should be followed."

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