Late Night Disaster Thread

h/t Susie Madrak via her FaceBook account.

Dr Helen Coldicot says that the Radiation from Japan’s crippled nuclear energy facilities will Kill Millions of People.  A report’s been released on Chernobyl’s meltdown on the event of its 25th anniversary.  There is a horrendous laundry list of damage from unusable crop land, cancers, and severely deformed fetuses and babies. From this, Dr. Coldicot extrapolates the future damage from Fukushima.  It’s bad; really bad.

You can read her statement here.

During the 25th anniversary last week of the Chernobyl disaster, some commentators asserted that few people died in the aftermath, and that there have been relatively few genetic abnormalities in survivors’ offspring. It’s an easy leap from there to arguments about the safety of nuclear energy compared to alternatives like coal, and optimistic predictions about the health of the people living near Fukushima.

But this is dangerously ill informed and short-sighted; if anyone knows better, it’s doctors like me. There’s great debate about the number of fatalities following Chernobyl; the International Atomic Energy Agency has predicted that there will be only about 4,000 deaths from cancer, but a 2009 report published by the New York Academy of Sciences says that almost one million people have already perished from cancer and other diseases.

The high doses of radiation caused so many miscarriages that we will never know the number of genetically damaged fetuses that did not come to term. (And both Belarus and Ukraine have group homes full of deformed children.)

Nuclear accidents never cease. We’re decades if not generations away from seeing the full effects of the radioactive emissions from Chernobyl.

As we know from Hiroshima and Nagasaki, it takes years to get cancer. Leukemia takes only 5 to 10 years to emerge, but solid cancers take 15 to 60. Furthermore, most radiation-induced mutations are recessive; it can take many generations for two recessive genes to combine to form a child with a particular disease, like my specialty, cystic fibrosis. We can’t possibly imagine how many cancers and other diseases will be caused in the far future by the radioactive isotopes emitted by Chernobyl and Fukushima.

Even more startling is this presser that you can watch in the Youtube below.  The human cost is and will continue to be astronomical. It’s ten minutes well-spent.  I actually think that sharing pictures of deformed children and babies could do the world good.

10 Comments on “Late Night Disaster Thread”

  1. Minkoff Minx says:

    Watching that video, and realized my hand was up to my mouth like Hillary had in that situation room picture. But I wasn’t coughing.

    This just was posted at FDL
    Japan Nuclear Watch, May 19: Critical Safety Vent Failures Could Happen Here Too | MyFDL

  2. Branjor says:

    Words are not adequate to convey the horror of what our “fellow” men have wrought on this planet. What massive evil.

    • gregoryp says:

      At some point I am sure that I read that MORE people had been killed due to war during the 20th century than had previously existed in our entire history.

      We are constantly building things which kill us. We discover antibiotics and use them indiscriminately even after we find out how they lead to hardier and more virulent pathogens. We constantly murder each other. A huge portion of our population completely deny facts. Most of us believe in a supreme being and many believe they actually talk to that being on a regular basis.

      My point? It is who we are as a species. It isn’t evil at all. We are just a planet of idiots. A planet of insane, narcissistic, short sighted, whackos. I think we had to be just to survive our meager beginnings on the harsh and brutal African Savanna.

      • madamab says:

        But don’t you know, the most pressing issue on the planet is women who decide to terminate their pregnancies. At least it is to some people…


    • Branjor says:

      It is unmitigated, unbridled, massive and mostly deliberate evil.

  3. paper doll says:

    thank you for posting

  4. The Rock says:

    Dr Helen Coldicot says that the Radiation from Japan’s crippled nuclear energy facilities will kill millions of people.

    Well THAT is bad news…..

    Hillary 2012

  5. Delphyne says:

    I love Helen Caldicott – she saved my life when she gave a talk about the dangers of nuclear energy. One of her examples was malignant melanoma and how fast is spread and the damage it did to a human body. At that time, 20 years ago, I had a mole on my left arm right where I was vaccinated which was beginning to change. Because of her talk, I saw a dermatologist, was diagnosed, had to have surgery only and have been fine so far. I credit Dr. Caldicott for opening my eyes and am forever grateful to her.

    I also admire her for her outspokenness and the fact that she does not back down when it comes to the dangers of nuclear energy. Perhaps because I am a duck and cover child, I’m more sensitive about this – I remember those drills in grammar school and even then, thought that if a nuclear bomb went off, I would never survive by covering my head and eyes. It was nightmarish.

    Thanks for posting – I’m off to watch the video now.

    • paper doll says:

      wonderful comment, glad you saw her back then and had that treated! It was interesting in this clip that after she laid it out about the damage already done, she also went into the mind set that allows

    • dakinikat says:

      We had one of those duck and cover drills during the Cuban Missile Crisis when I was barely in grade school. I had no idea what was going on and why. I can’t believe some actually pushed that as a way to survive.