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Children and Health

Children are among the most vulnerable to - and least protected from - radiation exposure. Current "acceptable" exposure standards in the U.S. are based on "Standard Man" - i.e., a robust young male. This does not take into account the more serious effects of radiation exposure to pregnant women and children in particular, including to the unborn. Beyond Nuclear supports efforts to change these standards.

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Wednesday
Mar032010

Tritium: a universal health threat released by every nuclear reactor. 

 “…as an isotope of hydrogen (the cell’s most ubiquitous element), tritium can be incorporated into essentially all portions of the living machinery; and it is not innocuous." R. Lowry Dobson MD, PhD quoted from The toxicity of tritium 1979.

Beyond Nuclear presents a new fact sheet on tritium discussing where it comes from, how it acts in the environment and humans and what the health hazards of exposure are. References are included.

Sunday
Jul122009

No safe dose

Although the scientific community recognizes that there is no safe dose of radiation, federal agencies permit “allowable” or “legal” levels of radiation exposure to humans that are neither conservative nor protective enough.

These levels are based only on the obsolete “Reference Man,” a healthy, white male in the prime of life, and ignore the more vulnerable fetus, growing infant and child, the aged, those in poor health, and women who are, according to the National Academy of Sciences 37- 50% more vulnerable than adult men to the harmful effects of ionizing radiation. These levels, therefore, do not take into account the far greater vulnerability of women and children, especially pregnant women and unborn children.

Beyond Nuclear is supporting efforts to have these standards revised.

Sunday
Jul122009

Case Study: The children of Illinois – an unfolding story

In Illinois – the state with the most nuclear reactors (11) in the country – Beyond Nuclear has been tracking disturbing cancer incidences and other health abnormalities - especially among children – around the Braidwood and Dresden nuclear reactors.

At Braidwood, dozens of known tritium leaks and spills hidden from the public for more than a decade have contaminated area groundwater and seeped into private wells. This has prompted concern about health effects, including cancer “clusters.” Yet the owner – Exelon – and government officials downplayed the potential harm of ingesting tritium despite the fact that prolonged exposure to even low doses of tritium are known to cause cancers and birth defects.

Around Dresden, also owned by Exelon, there has been an unexplained increase in rare childhood brain cancers, heart ailments and birth defects, in most cases proving fatal. Dresden had also leaked tritium into drainage ditches and is listed by the NRC as having the highest airborne radioactive emissions in the country.

Families around every nuclear power plant could face similar risks. That is why Beyond Nuclear will work to bring these stories to national media attention. Every family has the right to make informed choices about their environment and health.

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