Australian news, and some related international items

Ionising radiation – the forgotten health disaster – theme for October 21

Today, it is fashionable to ingore the topic of ionising radiation. Indeed, as Australia moves towards proudly(?) becoming a part of the global nuclear chain, with the government’s rather vague plan to get nuclear submarines, the last thing anybody wants to talk about is nuclear radiation.

Australia has a sad history of prioritsing ”defence” and ”industry” over health. So, we ignored the health effects of atomic bomb tgests in the 1950s and 60s – the ”black rain” that fell on Aboriginal people (heck our government pretended that those people were not even there!). We ignored the health of uranium miners, and of the environment around uranium mines (still toxic to this day) In the interests of the uranium industry, to this day, it seems bad form for an Australian to talk about ionising radiation.

At the same time, Australia is in a panic over tiny viruses that can cause ill-health very quickly. It seems OK to ignore tiny radioactive particles that can cause illness and death decades later – especially as they affect children and women more than they affect men. Children are 10 to 20 times more sensitive to the carcinogenic effects of radiation than adults (little girls are twice as sensitive as boys) and fetuses are thousands of times more sensitive – one X ray to the pregnant abdomen doubles the incidence of leukemia in the childHelen Caldicott,)

Worldwide, in the interests of the nuclear industry, and their paid politicians, there has been a concerted effort to NOT do the necessary laboratory and epidemiological research to clearly show the effects of nuclear activities on human health. One glaring example is that in what little research is encouraged, they’ll study the effcts of external radiation, – such as the waves of radioactive particles hitting people from an explosion – (e.g. Hiroshima, Fukushima) , but not the effects of longlasting internal radiation, – that is, of radioactive particles breathed in, or swallowed.

Today the big thing is – Wow – Australia’s going to ?grow up – join the global nuclear push! It is timely now to remember that slow global threat of ionising radiation. As Helen Caldicott has put it – ‘‘Recommending nuclear power as a solution to climate change is like recommending smoking as a solution to obesity’

October 1, 2021 Posted by | AUSTRALIA - NATIONAL, Christina themes | Leave a comment