On October 14th, the World Nuclear Association posted a podcast concerning the issue of radiological protection. (1) Or rather… a collaborative statement on what has happened in the recent past that sent the wrong message to the public – specifically, the unfortunate message sent to the Japanese people due to their government’s mandated evacuation following the Fukushima accident. WNA assembled four of the world’s most prestigious experts on the subject and literally turned them loose on each other. But remarkably, they were clearly all on the same page and sent out a powerful message – reactive philosophy relative to radiation issues is a disaster, and those who really know what the truth need to become pro-active.
The link is at the end of this commentary, but I feel it is important to summarize what I believe are the most critical of the ideas presented in the podcast. Why? Because most people don’t think they have time for a 46 minute devotion of their life for this. I strongly urge that everyone…EVERYONE…reading this MAKE the time. This is incredible stuff. Hey, I had an epiphany or two along the way. Give yourself the opportunity to do the same.
- We have met the enemy, and it is us. With official groups reacting to radiological incidents/accidents by saying “we’ll make it safer”, the public rationally believes the subject of the problem must necessarily be unsafe. This is not only the fault of government regulatory bodies, but also the fault of the so-called “industry” involved. We should be asking – are we really making things safer, or are we merely making it seem that way? IF something is already inordinately safe, it makes no sense to say that it can be made safer! Thus, being reactive and cowering in a state of mea culpa is NOT the way to go.
- There WILL always be radiological incidents made to seem significant by the press and vote-hungry politicians. They WILL receive Press coverage. Instead of waiting for the foreseeable to happen and reacting to it, become pro-active and educate the public on the realities of radioactive exposures before the inevitable manifests. (aside – antinuclear groups around the world are always in preparation for the next “big one”, and they are immediately ready to preach their fear-mongering gospel as soon as “it” happens. Radiological experts should learn from this and follow the similar preparatory path.)
- A severe lack of professional radiation-expert voices in Japan after 3/11/11 resulted in socio-political disaster. Scientists are generally rather timid souls who do not seek the limelight of Press coverage. As a result, the prophets of doom get their gutter-tripe broadcast, and it seems that there is no other opinion existent. What is needed is a professional source (or sources) available to the Press 24/7, always on the ready to get the news media correctly informed as soon as any radiological incident occurs.
The best-possible resolution to this situation is education of the public. How can the education of the public on the real properties and biological effects of radiation happen? Governments won’t do it because making the public feel “safer” wins votes. The “industries” won’t do it because spending money on education never yields a positive return on investment. It’s up to people like me, Dr. Jerry Cuttler (2), Rod Adams (3), and the membership of SARI (4) (Scientists for Accurate Radiation Information) to do it! And we are trying. Tell your friends about us. Tell your local news outlets about us. We are all available.
It is long-past time for the world to find out the truth about the most common phenomena in the universe – radiation!
Now… listen to the podcast (1) and become informed…