Caroline Kennedy Visits Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant, Is The Radiation Still Dangerous?

Fukushima Tsunami

Caroline Kennedy is the first female United States Ambassador to Japan, and as part of her duties there she was invited to visit the ruins of the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power station.

In a related report by The Inquisitr, rumors about a Caroline Kennedy divorce were put to rest when her husband joined her for a visit from President Obama.

Kennedy and her son, John Schlossberg, donned hazmat suits to protection themselves against Fukushima’s radiation. They visited reactor number four, where around 5,000 busy workers were removing spent nuclear fuel rods. Out of the 1,500 fuel rod assemblies left in the storage pond, already around 900 have been transferred using a large 100-ton crane. But there are also around 450,000 tons of contaminated water.

Speaking to the crowds, Caroline Kennedy talked about how the United States has tried to help Japan as much as possible since the 2011 tsunami took out the Fukushima nuclear power plant:

“We stand ready to help in any way we can going forward in the future. It’s very hard to visualize and understand the complexity of the challenge when you just read about it.”

Caroline’s son was also inspired by what he saw at Fukushima:

“I hope my peers, my generation, in the United States will keep Fukushima in mind and understand that there is still work to be done and that we can all do something to help.”

Fortunately, while the radiation leak from Fukushima can be dangerous, the good news is that a United Nations report claims the damage from the radiation is not as bad as might be feared:

“The doses to the general public, both those incurred during the first year and estimated for their lifetimes, are generally low or very low. No discernible increased incidence of radiation-related health effects are expected among exposed members of the public or their descendants. The most important health effect is on mental and social well-being, related to the enormous impact of the earthquake, tsunami and nuclear accident, and the fear and stigma related to the perceived risk of exposure to ionizing radiation. Effects such as depression and post-traumatic stress symptoms have already been reported…. Increased rates of detection of [thyroid] nodules, cysts and cancers have been observed during the first round of screening; however, these are to be expected in view of the high detection efficiency [using modern high-efficiency ultrasonography]. Data from similar screening protocols in areas not affected by the accident imply that the apparent increased rates of detection among children in Fukushima Prefecture are unrelated to radiation exposure.”

What do you think about Caroline Kennedy’s visit to Fukushima?

[Image via NuclearPhilosophy.org]