In wake of disaster, children on the west coast of U.S. almost one-third more likely to suffer from thyroid abnormalities; 39% in California
Originally published on April 2, 2013 at Common Dreams
By Lauren McCauley, staff writer
Infants on the West Coast of the United States are showing increased incidents of thyroid abnormalities, which researchers are attributing to radiation released following the March 2011 meltdown at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant.
According to a new study (.pdf) published in the Open Journal of Pediatrics, children born in Alaska, California, Hawaii, Oregon and Washington between one week and 16 weeks after the meltdown began are an average of 28 percent more likely to suffer from congenital hypothyroidism (CH) than were kids born in those states during the same period one year earlier. In California, the number is a staggering 39 percent.
CH results from a build up of radioactive iodine in our thyroids and can result in stunted growth, lowered intelligence, deafness, and neurological abnormalities—though can be treated if detected early.
January 2, 2013--(San Diego’s East County)--East County Roundup highlights top stories of interest to East County and San Diego’s inland regions, published in other media. This week’s top “Roundup” headlines include:
- Hiking in San Diego County? There's an App for That (La Mesa Patch)
- La Mesa resident prevails in illegal search case U-T San Diego)
- Ways to Work’ helps families move their lives forward by putting wheels on them (East County Californian)
- Spring Valley Citizens Association survives by a single vote on third ballot (La Mesa Patch)
- Sailors sue Japan over illnesses they say stem from radiation exposure at Fukushima (10 News)
- New members for Grossmont Hospital Foundation (U-T San Diego)
- New San Diego Humane Society adoption center opens at East County Petco (East County Californian)
SAN DIEGO REGION
- San Diego Can Now Have Redevelopment Funds For Some Projects (U-T San Diego)
- Gov. Brown Grants 79 Pardons, Including Seven Cases in SD County (La Mesa Patch)
- Economy for 2013: San Diego worse than state, nation? (SD Reader/Don Bauder)
- Sempra completes Hawaii wind farm project (San Diego Business Journal)
- Mortgages, vaccinations, guns among new-law topics (Sacramento Bee)
- New California laws to affect drivers in 2013 (Sacramento Bee)
- California's snowpack levels above normal (Sacramento Bee)
- Jerry Brown pushes new funding system for California schools (Sacramento Bee)
Read more for excerpts and links to full stories.
Despite disturbing finding, Edison seeks to restart trouble-prone nuclear facility
Hearing Nov. 30 in Laguna Hills as nine cities voice concerns over safety issues
By Miriam Raftery
November 30, 2012 (San Diego)—Southern California Edison has notified the Nuclear Regulatory Commission of possible sabotage at the San Onofre Nuclear Generating facility, after finding coolant poured in the oil reservoir of an emergency backup generator at Unit 3, Energy News reports.
The FBI is taking over the investigation and criminal charges are possible, according to a plant employee who spoke under condition of anonymity, fearing reprisals, Huffington Post reported yesterday. The NRC has confirmed that Edison reported potential sabotage,Energy News reported.
"The FBI is aware of the alleged security incident that occurred at the San Onofre Nuclear Generating (SONGS) Station. The FBI is presently reviewing the facts and circumstances concerning this incident," Special agent Darrell Foxworth with the FBI told ECM. "At this time there is no indication that this incident is terrorism related."
Previous news stories have speculated that a disgruntled employee could be the culprit due to recent layoff announcements.
Failure of emergency generators at Fukushima were key factors in that plant’s meltdown last year. A meltdown at San Onofre would force evacuation of San Diego, portions of East County and also parts of Orange and Riverside counties and could potentially leave the region contaminated for generations.
PROTESTERS TO CALL FOR SHUT-DOWN OF SAN ONOFRE AT SEMPRA HEADQUARTERS AFTER SENATOR WARNS OF FUKUSHIMA THREAT TO U.S.
“The radiation caused by the failure of the spent fuel pools in the event of another earthquake could reach the West Coast within days. That absolutely makes the safe containment and protection of this spent fuel a security issue for the United States.”—Senator Ron Wyden
May 17, 2012 (San Diego)—U.S. Senator Ron Wyden recently visited Japan and issued a warning that the U.S. faces a national security risk from spent fuel pools at Fukushima’s Unit 4. View an MSNBC interview with Wyden.
If another quake strikes the already exposed spent fuel--an event seismic experts say is likely to occur this year--experts including a Nobel Prize winner and a former U.N. ambassador now say that a cataclysmic disaster could occur threatening lives across the globe.
- Fukushima fallout: fire hazard could be state’s tsunami (UT San Diego)
- Fukushima fallout: lessons not learned by the U.S. government (UT San Diego)
- Nuke quake study on hold over $64 million cost: utility wants ratepayers, not shareholders, to pay (Sacramento Bee)
- Whistleblowers, Aguirre sue utility watchdog (Voice of San Diego)
- Water agencies decry “secret society” of agencies (San Diego Union-Tribune)
- La Mesa school shooting plan foiled (San Diego Union-Tribune)
- Mary England denies being evicted in family home foreclosure case (La Mesa Patch)
- Local nonprofit group’s video parks worldwide movement (10 News)
- View the video: Kony 2012, Invisible Children
- Chamber takes no position on Gov. Brown’s tax plan, opposes rivals (Sacramento Bee)
- California revenues 3.2 percent shy in February (Sacramento Bee)
2 Fukushima-area residents to tell stories; celebrities to join rally
Update March 12: View a video of the rally www.youtube.com/watch
Video: Fukushim survivors speak: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EWKHtIUqnOQ&feature=email
March 9, 2012 (SAN ONOFRE) – Activists from San Diego to Eureka will converge at the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station (SONGS,) just south of San Clemente, on the first anniversary of the devastating Fukushima disaster, March 11, 2012. The peaceful protest will occur a short walk from San Onofre State Beach about 1/8 mile south of the SONGS facility.
Local pastor visits 60 Congressional offices and meets with CA Senators; Feinstein pledges to oppose new nuclear plants
By Rev. Peter Moore-Kochlacs
Special Correspondent for the Southern California Ecumenical Council, the National Religious Coalition for Creation Care and the Green Ecumenical and Interfaith Religious Communities in California
May 14, 2011 (El Cajon) -- April 29 to May 6 was a working week for me in Washington, DC. I was in the Capitol advocating against our government’s current new nuclear power public policies.
Visiting over 60 Congressional Senate and House offices, I made the point on moral, safety and financial grounds that in light of the Fukushima, Japan nuclear power plant accidents and other problems inherent with nuclear energy, the federal government should stop permitting the building of new US land-based nuclear power plants.
May 13, 2011 (Japan) Officials at Tokyo Electric Power (TEPCO), operator of the hard-hit Fukushima nuclear facility, yesterday publicly confirmed that a meltdown has occurred at Reactor number one.
Now Japan’s nuclear safety agency states that efforts to cool the reactor with water may be pointless, since fuel rods are believed to have melted and sunk to the bottom of the containment vessel—where highly radioactive water is now leaking through holes at the bottom, Japan’s NHK World news agency reports.
By Miriam Raftery
May 11, 2011 (San Diego’s East County) – Several of our readers have asked for updates on the crisis at the Fukushima, Japan nuclear reactors. I expected that since the story seems to have fallen off the radar of most major media, the situation might have stabilized.
The truth is quite the opposite. The best site I found with reliable updates is Energy News, a site dedicated to reporting the Fukushima crisis with links to top news stories and videos from reputable news agencies worldwide. High radiation levels have been found consistently outside the official exclusion zone. Yesterday’s headlines alone make clear that a resolution is nowhere in site:
Nuclear disaster offers lessons to be learned in San Diego, as safety questions arise over San Onofre
By Miriam Raftery
April 27, 2011 (San Diego) – They are the tiniest victims of the world’s worst nuclear disaster: the children of Chernobyl. Yet few have seen their photos or heard their story, even as the world marks the 25th anniversary of the Chernobyl crisis this week. If you haven’t seen these shocking images, view them here: http://inmotion.magnumphotos.com/essay/chernobyl.
Now imagine this happening to the children of San Diego, which lies within 50 miles of the San Onofre nuclear power plant. Or having our city evacuated for our lifetime and beyond, as residents near the Fukushima, Japan, reactors are now enduring.
Editor's note: This column was deleted at the request of the author for further fact-checking.
By Tracy Emblem
March 19, 2011 (San Diego) -- No new nuclear power plants have been built in the United States since the late 1970's. However, in 2009, Senator Lamar Alexander from Tennessee unveiled his blueprint to build 100 nuclear power plants within the next 20 years.
Even with the nuclear power plant crisis unfolding in Japan, the senator insists that nuclear energy is safe and continues to call on the federal government to guarantee loans for nuclear power plants with tax payer dollars.
SAN-DIEGO BASED AIRCRAFT CARRIER PASSES THROUGH RADIOACTIVE PLUME; CAPTAIN ASSURES ALL PERSONNEL SAFE
By Miriam Raftery
March 14, 2011 (San Diego) – The U.S. S. Ronald Reagan, an aircraft carrier based out of San Diego, has repositioned after detecting radioactive fallout from the Fukushima Dai-Ichi nuclear power plant in Japan that has undergone a partial meltdown. According to Captain Thom Burke, commanding officer, all personnel aboard are “safe and healthy.”
The ship has been deployed to assist in relief efforts following the devastating earthquake and tsunami, which has left an estimated 10,000 dead and many more missing in Japan.