Small Amounts of Radiation in Various U.S. States Rainwater
MARCH 29, 2011: USA TODAY: At least 15 states have found trace amounts of radiation from the crippled nuclear plant in Japan, but officials say the levels of radioactivity are much too low to prompt health concerns.
I have been planning on setting up two rainwater barrels on the side of my house to supplement my gardens, especially my new veggie and berry gardens. I am having second thoughts what with the Japan radiation wafting over here as far as Massachusetts. While the amounts are “minuscule”, I am concerned with the accumulation and increased concentration over the long term.
San Francisco Chronicle (AP) reports: Health officials said Sunday that one sample of Massachusetts rainwater has registered very low concentrations of radiation, most likely from the Japanese nuclear power plant damaged earlier this month by an earthquake and tsunami.
John Auerbach, the Massachusetts commissioner of public health, said that radioiodine-131 found in the sample _ one of more than 100 that have been taken around the country _ has a short life of only eight days. He said the drinking water supply in the state was unaffected and officials do not expect any health concerns.
Nevada and other Western states also have reported minuscule amounts of radiation, but scientists say those presented no health risks.
The Massachusetts Department of Public Health said the in-state sample was taken in the past week, but they did not say where. The testing is part of a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency network that monitors for radioactivity.
State officials said similar testing was done in California, Pennsylvania, Washington and other states, and showed comparable levels of I-131 in rain.