[ RadSafe ] More on the indefensible attack on dead scientists- Gofman et al

Franz Schönhofer franz.schoenhofer at chello.at
Mon May 20 15:08:06 CDT 2013


You waste your time by writing to a troll. It even seems that he is now 
trolling on RADSAFE using another name . It does not make any sense to 
discuss with him - these trolls are not accessible by any reasonable 

It is a wise decision not to discuss this matter with him any more. I would 
hope that other RADSAFErs would follow!

Best regards,


PS: Andy Karam used to be on RADSAFE and I even met him once on the Greek 
Island of Rhodos at a conference on NORM. "?"

-----Ursprüngliche Nachricht----- 
Sent: Monday, May 20, 2013 4:05 PM
To: NiagaraNet at aol.com ; sjd at swcp.com
Cc: radsafe at health.phys.iit.edu
Subject: Re: [ RadSafe ] More on the indefensible attack on dead scientists- 
Gofman et al

Actually, you misunderstand the point that was being made. I doubt that
anybody considers deaths to be acceptable. The point of this was that
Dr. Gofman made a simple math mistake that inflated his risk
calculations. You should also look at the number of lives lost in coal
mines, in oil and gas fields, and in communities affected by the waste
from mining and petroleum recovery - you will certainly find that even
Gofman's inflated numbers are far lower than the death toll from fossil
fuels - and that doesn't even get into the possible impact of climate
change. If our goal truly is to minimize the loss of life from energy
production then we have to consider ALL of the lives that are affected -
not just the ones that help us to make our point.

The bottom line is that the availability of relatively cheap energy is
the most important factor globally in helping people to have healthier,
longer, and better lives. We can continue burning fuels - as we have for
tens of thousands of years - and pumping greenhouse gases into the
atmosphere. We can continue holding out for "alternative" sources of
energy - none of which are environmentally benign - while millions are
deprived of the energy that they need. Or we can use nuclear energy to
help fill the gap between the fossil fuels (that are polluting and that
are running out) and whatever comes next.

Incidentally, I'm not sure what points you're trying to score by
pointing out that neither Steve Dapra nor I are medical doctors - unless
you are being uncharacteristically modest in your e-mail signature,
neither are you. But holding (or not) a medical degree has no impact on
the ability to multiply two numbers (as Gofman did) and arrive at the
correct result (as he did not).

But I suspect that whatever I say will make no dent on your utter
certainty, and I will not discuss this matter with you further.


Doubt is an uncomfortable condition, but certainty is a ridiculous one.

From: NiagaraNet at aol.com [mailto:NiagaraNet at aol.com]
Sent: Monday, May 20, 2013 1:09 AM
To: sjd at swcp.com; KARAM, PHILIP
Cc: niagaranet at aol.com
Subject: More on the indefensible attack on dead scientists - Gofman et

Dear Mr. Dapra and Mr. Karam:

So, you both will argue that John W. Gofman, M.D., was "wrong" but yet
you both expound instead on "it's only 50 to 150 DEATHS." Just a simple
math equation to you both, eh? Sorry guys but in "anyone's world" that's
just immoral. It seems that's an inbred trait throughout your industry -
that immorality thing! As long as you can make a paycheck, 50 to 150
deaths is "OK" in the nuclear industry for the general public? You
wonder why the general public thinks so lowly of this business?

Wonder no more.

And, to boot, neither of you hold a medical degree!

With chagrin,

Louis Ricciuti

Niagara Falls _ Lewiston - Porter, NY

"Los Alamos East"

[ RadSafe ] Gofman on TMI and Chernobyl deaths

Steven Dapra sjd at swcp.com
Mon May 13 19:13:25 CDT 2013

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May 13

         Plus, it's my understanding that 300 rems is LD50, which
reduces the death toll to about 150.  Whatever the case, Gofman was
talking nonsense --- as he was wont to do.

         Thank you, Andy, for your analysis.

Steven Dapra

At 07:58 AM 5/13/2013, you wrote:
>Boy, even if you accept his numbers for population dose and accept LNT
>at any level of exposure the math still doesn't work out. Using a risk
>coefficient of 5% per Sv a dose of 300 rem (3 Sv) gives a 15% chance of
>fatal cancer. So (if I remember how to do this, which might not be a
>good assumption), instead of 333 cancers we'd have 333 x 15% = 50 fatal
>But even this is likely an over-estimate since virtually all off-site
>dose to exposed individuals was so low, and since his population dose
>figure is so high. It brings to mind the ICRP statement that, if the
>dose to the most-exposed individual is trivial then the dose to all
>individuals must be considered trivial and it's inappropriate to assume
>that the collective dose will somehow have an impact. Or to use an
>analogy I posted earlier, we can't throw a million one-gram rocks at
>everyone in Cleveland and assume that, because the cumulative weight is
>a ton, a few people will be crushed.
>-----Original Message-----
>From: radsafe-bounces at health.phys.iit.edu
>[mailto:radsafe-bounces at health.phys.iit.edu
<http://health.phys.iit.edu/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/radsafe> ] On
Behalf Of Steven Dapra
>Sent: Friday, May 10, 2013 11:22 PM
>To: radsafe at agni.phys.iit.edu
>Subject: [ RadSafe ] Gofman on TMI and Chernobyl deaths
>May 10
>          Gofman claimed a human exposure of
>100,000 man-rems from the Three Mile Island
>accident.  He then claimed one death per 300
>man-rems.  Dividing 100,000 by 300 gives 333
>deaths from Three Mile Island --- at least in Gofman's world.
>          He made this claim in the Foreword to
>the 1979 printing of his book "Poisoned
>Power."  The Foreword will be found at this link:
>          To find his specific claim about the
>number of deaths, scroll down the page about
>two-thirds of the way to the paragraph beginning
>"Now we are ready to solve our equation."
>          For Gofman's claims of deaths resulting
>from the Chernobyl accident, see a 1994 interview
>with Gofman in "Synapse," the student newspaper
>published by the University of California in San
>Francisco.  In the interview, Gofman said:
>"After Chernobyl, I estimated that there were
>going to be 475,000 fatal cancers throughout
>Europe - with another 475,000 cancers that are
>not fatal. That estimate was based on the dose
>released on the various countries of fallout from Cesium-137."
>          The link is:
>          The quote is near the beginning of the interview.
>Steven Dapra


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