So far the POTRBLOG team has spent approximately $2,300 for professional gamma spectrometry lab services to test key food products which may give insight into the ongoing buildup of Fukushima radioactivity in North America. We thank those who have supported this effort via donations, as of today we have received approximately $1,000 in donations to help offset these expensive tests. Anyone who has donated may email us to request copies of the lab reports (with personal information redacted).
In the most recent lab test we submitted wild black walnuts harvested from a local playground area; these trees reside in a usually muddy/swampy small bottom land area. As such, these black walnuts may make for good indicators of bio-available radioactive contamination. Our own Geiger counter tests indicated that these Walnuts were radioactive at 150% over background radiation (580 counts vs 376 counts), hence we sent these off to the professional lab for further testing.
On the good news side, heavier radioactive man made isotopes such as Cs-134/ 137 were not detected by the lab. This is good news as previously we had detected Fukushima Cesium 137 in a 2011 ground beef sample. On the negative side, the Black Walnuts tested positive for lighter weight radioactive Be-7 at 4 Bq/Kg.
Be-7 is lighter than both Nitrogen and Oxygen, it is formed via spallation when Neutrons and/or Protons slam into Nitrogen / Oxygen atoms. One possible source for the creation of Be-7 is the interaction between Fukushima Corium and the liquid (or gaseous) Nitrogen being pumped into the Fukushima 'containment'. The other possible source is from Solar Coronal Mass Ejections impacting Earth's atmosphere. The former the Nuclear Industry will likely never ever mention.
The later is a well known phenomena, and was heavily mentioned as a cause of Be-7 detections during the initial phase of the ongoing Fukushima disastor;
In the case of our Missouri Black Walnuts, we cannot rule out Fukushima as a source, but we give more credence to CME production as the majority source. Overall, as the results of our tests, we have lowered our risk mitigation threshold for MIDWEST produce grown prior to December 2012. Our risk mitigation threshold remains high for any and all food products from Canada and those food products west of the Sierra Nevada and Cascade mountains.
Our risk mitigation lowering is based on the Midwest drought and the negative bio-available detections since the initial phase of the ongoing catastrophe. On the other hand, every rain storm once again raises the long term bio-accumulation risk.
In possible future tests, the next item we would like to have tested in the professional Gamma Spectrometry lab is a Florida Key's Coconut which fell from the tree in July 2011. We believe this coconut will provide insight into the southerly range of the initial radioactive Cesium plume from Fukushima. If you would like to make this test happen please donate at the link below.
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