Now, there I was doing a first pass at researching -- or rather, re-researching, checking up on a situation brought to my attention by a fellow blogger, concerning the cobalt-60 situation at Fukushima. High levels, possibly anomalous. Ongoing detections, interenting in light of the short half-life of the element. Perhaps cobalt-60 is created when the iron in the containment got hit with neutrons back when the explosions happened -- but that doesn't explain the ongoing problem with cobalt-60 at reactor number five.
What was that? Five? That's right, number five, a reactor whose fuel has not suffered a meltdown -- so far -- and has had to be cooled, and will need to continue to be cooled for a long time to come, if this is to remain the case. Along with number six.
But I digress.
So the article I spoke of indicates that cobalt-60, which can be a trace byproduct of nuclear reactor fuel cycle, as I understand it -- can in fact be a significant component of weapons fallout, as it is produced by nuclear fission.
Is that right?
Well, not according to the CDC.
The PUBLIC HEALTH STATEMENT ON COBALT, available at www.atsdr.cdc.gov/tp33-c1-cobalt-toxprofile.pdf Link is to PDF. Here is the html version, finagled from Google's cache, besides having doozies of propaganda exemplars such as
has this to say about how cobalt is produced:
That would be in direct contradiction to the above information.
Who is right? The US Government, or some blogger?
From the US Atlas of Nuclear Fallout Volume I.
All these maps are now hosted by 260 press, who says they were sourced from government studies. Preliminary attempts to locate the originals left me emptyhanded; leave a comment and a link, please, if you have better luck.
I can't find weapons testing or fallout anywhere on this page from the EPA, can you?
I was led to this information by this awesome post over at Allegedly Apparent (a blog which is again accessible, and updated. Shhh, don't say anything, act nonchalant and maybe it will stay that way):
Maybe there is a good explanation, something other than the wild conspiracies that beg to be considered. They are pretty interesting, actually, and I have posted what details I thought coherent and plausible, elsewhere in this blog.* But perhaps there is some other culprit. You know, too much iron in the seawater maybe, or maybe the zircalloy fuel rods were zincalloy by accident...
*A BRIEF ASIDE REFERENCING INTERESTING POSSIBLE EXPLANATIONS YOU CAN RESEARCH FOR YOURSELF
(That is, other than those explanations involving a secret weapons program, which would mean the nuclear material that go boom was enriched not to 3-20% as it would be with reactor fuel, but the 98% necessary for military uses -- explaining all the crazy high readings, ongoing criticalities, and general weirdness. Crazy stuff, some of it going all the way out there, claiming Israel was middleman for the deal, and swapped out the goods with inferior, thus providing a motive for Stu.X.net and explanation for that Israeli security company allegedly acting as a chaparone those first crucial days. The things people find on the internet.)
SOME LINKS, IN NO ORDER:
Japanese Police, Coast Guard, Hold "Drill" At Fukushima "To Prepare For A Possible Terrorist Attack" DON'T YOU FEEL SAFER NOW?(What was that I saw about Japan returning a bunch of plutonium to the US recently?)
Be seeing you.