[ RadSafe ] "Chernobyl Radiation Equal to Everyday Risks" - Jim Smith, UK

Muckerheide, Jim (CDA) Jim.Muckerheide at state.ma.us
Tue Apr 3 13:11:30 CDT 2007


Sandy Perle sent a report by the subject title.  Here is the abstract of
the paper, with a link to the PDF of the BMC journal open-access
manuscript format.

This result is still based on the unrealistic assumption that radiation
effects should be based on the LNT based on the false premise that the
RERF data on the Hiroshima and Nagasaki survivors can be representative
of radiation exposures of nuclear power plant releases, including
Chernobyl.  There are other limitations of the background data and
analyses that could substantially improve this case.

This result is also supportive of the premise that the impact of
Chernobyl, as the most extreme nuclear plant radioactivity release
(although the concentrated core materials did not land on a population),
has less impact than the annual operation of one large coal plant
without advanced pollution controls.

Let me know if you have a problem retrieving this paper.

Regards, Jim Muckerheide

Are passive smoking, air pollution and obesity a greater mortality risk
than major radiation incidents?
Jim T Smith mailto:Jts at ceh.ac.uk

BMC Public Health 2007, 7:49 doi:10.1186/1471-2458-7-49

Published 3 April 2007
Abstract (provisional) 
The complete article is available as a provisional PDF
<http://www.biomedcentral.com/content/pdf/1471-2458-7-49.pdf> . The
fully formatted PDF and HTML versions are in production. 
Following a nuclear incident, the communication and perception of
radiation risk becomes a (perhaps the) major public health issue. In
response to such incidents it is therefore crucial to communicate
radiation health risks in the context of other more common environmental
and lifestyle risk factors. This study compares the risk of mortality
from past radiation exposures (to people who survived the Hiroshima and
Nagasaki atomic bombs and those exposed after the Chernobyl accident)
with risks arising from air pollution, obesity and passive and active
A comparative assessment of mortality risks from ionising radiation was
carried out by estimating radiation risks for realistic exposure
scenarios and assessing those risks in comparison with risks from air
pollution, obesity and passive and active smoking.
The mortality risk to populations exposed to radiation from the
Chernobyl accident may be no higher than that for other more common risk
factors such as air pollution or passive smoking. Radiation exposures
experienced by the most exposed group of survivors of Hiroshima and
Nagasaki led to an average loss of life expectancy significantly lower
than that caused by severe obesity or active smoking.
Population-averaged risks from exposures following major radiation
incidents are clearly significant, but may be no greater than those from
other much more common environmental and lifestyle factors. This
comparative analysis, whilst highlighting inevitable uncertainties in
risk quantification and comparison, helps place the potential
consequences of radiation exposures in the context of other public
health risks. 

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