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What do the general public need

Currently a large number of public figures who are opposed to nuclear power are speaking out against nuclear power. This includes some persons who claim to be experts.

I would like to know what the general public need. I hold a view that a fisherman or a farmer near the Fukushima plant or Chernobyl needs good advice to help with dose reduction actions rather than an expert trying to campaign for the closure of all nuclear plants. I hold a view that while a discussion regarding the question of “should the use of nuclear power be continued, expanded or halted” should occur but not at the expense of providing good dose reduction advice grounded in solid science.

In my view farmers, farming unions, local residents, local governments, national governments and other stakeholders need to be discussing dose reduction actions rather than a “ban on all things nuclear”. While a person may have a moral objection to the use of nuclear technology, I have a great moral objection to leaving people to wallow in a miry pit of while we spend countless hours debating.

Right now I think we need answers to questions such as

“How will cesium behave in a rice paddy ?”

The Japanese farming community need their government to take action to work out how large the effect of the radioactive release will be on farming, and how to reduce the size of this effect. My own view is that farmland which is contaminated with radioactivity can be used to do something useful.

If measures such as deep ploughing, potassium fertilizers, liming, a change in the crop grown, phytoremediation, zeolite and prussian blue can be used to reduce the transfer of radioactivity to the consumers. By lowering the transfer of radioactivity to humans the radiation dose suffered by the public can be lowered.

In addition well planned decontamination work can lower the external gamma dose to the public, and also reduce the amount of radioactive contamination in urban areas.

I would like to encourage organisations such as Greenpeace and the other NGOs which are opposed to the nuclear industry should ask their experts to spend some of their time working out how to mitigate the effects of the accident.

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