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Global warming is now a well-documented phenomenon that is inﬂuencing every aspect of our world, from increased storm intensity to melting of polar ice sheets and rising sea level. The impact of such changes in climate is least known for the deep ocean, which covers over 60% of the earth’s surface.
The highest sea-ﬂoor coverage by detrital aggregates measured throughout the 24-y time series occurred between March and August 2012, when salp detritus ranged from < 1% cover in early March to a high of 98% cover on 1 July (Fig. 1E).
This peak was 54% higher than any pre-2011 measure of SCOC.
It is not yet clear whether there might be an increasing trend in the food supply to other deep-ocean time- series stations.
An examination of satellite-estimated EF of organic carbon since 1997 from long time-series research stations, including PAP (Porcupine Abyssal Plain, northeast Atlantic), DELOS (Deep- Ocean Long-Term Envirnonmental Research Station, south Atlantic), Hausgarten (Arctic), and CARIACO (Cariaco Basin, Caribbean) also suggest that the highest monthly ﬂuxes from the euphotic zone occurred in 2011–2012 (Fig. S3). Relatively oligotrophic stations, such as the Bermuda Atlantic Time-Series (BATS), Hawaii Ocean Time-series (HOT), North Atlantic Oligotrophic Gyre (NOG), and South Atlantic Oligotrophic Gyre (SOG), however, show no such recent increase (Fig. S3).
There are 70 million cubic miles of water in the Pacific, which equates to 187,189,915,062,857,142,857 gallons, (187 quintillion gallons or 187,189,915,062 billion gallons), of water in the Pacific Ocean.
The Tokyo Electric Power Plant (TEPCO) estimated that since the March 2011 disaster, between 20 trillion and 40 trillion becquerels of radioactive tritium have leaked into the ocean, the Japanese newspaper Asahi Shimbun reported.
The damaged plant is still leaking about 300 tons of water containing these radionuclides into the ocean every day, Japanese government officials say. An additional 300 tons have leaked into the ground from the latest storage tank leak.
Ever since the 2011 disaster, scientists have been measuring levels of radioactivity in fish and other sea life. Several species of fish caught off the coast of Fukushima in 2011 and 2012 had cesium levels that exceeded Japan's regulatory limit for seafood, but the overall cesium levels of ocean life have dropped since the fall of 2011, U.S. and Japanese scientists both reported.
Jiji Press, Nov. 12, 2013: Radiation Level Hits Record High in Fukushima Well Water. Tepco said Tuesday the highest level of beta ray-emitting radioactive materials such as strontium was detected in water collected Sunday from an observation well. The level of such substances in the well water stood at 710,000 becquerels per liter, according to TEPCO and marked a record high for the fourth straight day. The well is about 15 meters north of the storage tank, from which some 300 tons of radioactive water leaked
The air in many 100 sq metre European homes (radon) up to 30 000 Bq
1 household smoke detector (with americium) 30 000 Bq
Radioisotope for medical diagnosis 70 million Bq
1 luminous Exit sign (1970s) 1 000 000 million Bq (1 TBq)
So, regardless of what units we use, how high does the exposure have to be before it produces significant effects? “If only we knew the answer,” Yanch says. We do know, at the high end, what levels produce immediate radiation sickness or death, but the lower the doses go, the less certain the data are on the effects. “
Some things are clear: A radiation dose of 500 millisieverts (mSv) or more can begin to cause some symptoms of radiation poisoning. Studies of those exposed to radiation from the atomic bomb blast at Hiroshima showed that for those who received a whole-body dose of 4,500 mSv, about 50 percent died from acute radiation poisoning. By way of comparison, the average natural background radiation in the United States is 2.6 mSv. The legal limit for annual exposure by nuclear workers is 50 mSv, and in Japan that limit was just raised for emergency workers to 250 mSv.
The becquerel (Bq) is named after the French physicist A.H. Becquerel. This unit measures radioactivity in a substance. It doesn't consider the type of radiation emitted or what its effects may be. One becquerel equals one nuclear disintegration per second. This is a very small unit, so multiples are often used. These include the:
kilobecquerel (kBq: thousand Bq);
megabecquerel (MBq: million Bq); and
gigabecquerel (GBq: thousand million or billion Bq).
The sievert (Sv) is named after the Swedish physicist Rolf M. Sievert. The unit reflects the biological effects of the ionizing radiation absorbed. It is used to express both the equivalent dose and the effective dose. The sievert is a very large dose of radiation. A more useful unit is the millisievert (mSv). This is one-thousandth of a sievert.
Radioactivity is often expressed in becquerels per unit of volume or weight, to express how much radioactive material is contained in a sample. But the unit of volume or weight is not fixed, so we may see becquerels per kilogram (Bq/kg), becquerels per litre (Bq/l), becquerels per cubic meter (Bq/m3), or becquerels per cubic centimetre (Bq/cm3). Of course we need to pay careful attention to this because 100 Bq/cm3 indicates 1000 times more radioactive material than 100Bq/l, which in turn indicates 1000 times more than 100Bq/m3.
But absorbed dose alone does indicate how much damage is done to the body, since different types of radiation cause different amounts of damage. So the absorbed dose is multiplied by a weighting factor (1 for beta and gamma radiation, and 20 for alpha radiation). The result is called equivalent dose and it is expressed in sieverts. This is essentially a measure of the amount of potential damage to the body from a given amount of radiation. Since one sievert is very large, we usually hear of the much smaller millisieverts (1/1000 sievert) or microsieverts (1/100000 sievert).
Tepco said Wednesday it detected 200,000 becquerels per liter of beta ray-emitting radioactive substances, including strontium-90, far above the legal limit of 30 becquerels per liter, as well as cesium-134 and -137, both within their legal limits.
reply to post by nothingwrong
Because they can't see the sea floor in most of the Pacific ocean. It's too deep. This is some persons attempt to scare people. I don't know what the motivation is but it certainly is not beneficial. I never understand the motivation behind doom porn. I don't have the mind for it. Of course there are other folks who pass the information along because they believe and feel they are doing a service by letting other people know and I find no fault with them. They are innocent. It's the ones who originate the lie that I find fault with. And with every disaster that befalls our planet they come out of the woodwork to spread fear.
The average radioactivity of seawater is about 14 Bq/L of which 88% is from naturally occurring potassium-40 (K-40). About 7% is from anthropogenic fallout from atmospheric nuclear weapons testing and nuclear accidents like Chernobyl (1986) and Fukushima Daiichi (2011). So there is about 13 Bq/L of natural radioactivity on average is the oceans. In high salinity areas (where conservative elements that scale with salinity like K and U have the highest concentration) activity can be as high as 22 Bq/L (Persian Gulf) and 15 Bq/L (eastern Mediterranean).
But knowing the disintegrations per second doesn't tell you very much, really. To guess at the damage a given amount of radiation causes, you still need to know the average energy of the disintegrations. And of course, you need to know the type of emission: alpha, beta, gamma, x-ray, etc.. Each type has different properties, and each isotope's type(s) of emissions have average energy levels. Some occur together -- a gamma ray and an alpha emission. Some follow in short sequence: A beta emission followed by a gamma ray shortly thereafter.
So what you say is that I should end my moratorium on tuna sandwiches?
I don't know what to think anymore.
You've got this one group saying it's very bad, the other group saying it's just fine.
(Nothing to see folks, move along)
I suppose if I want to know the truth I will need two things:
1) A tuna sandwich
2) A geiger counter
I just don't know what to know about anything I really need to know about, that's what I know.
A Geiger counter won't really work unless it's extremely contaminated because they just aren't sensitive enough to be accurate with low levels of contamination. To get an accurate reading of the total amount of radiation in your food, you'd need to reduce it to ash and read it in a scintillation counter.
I think (as has been mentioned in this thread already) ocean acidification is the primary problem, with deep ocean vents and volcanos and their emissions being a close second. Pollution is also a major problem, as well as overfishing.
I do see a need to curb carbon emissions simply to help the oceans recover. The climate change issue is really as big a priority, in my mind, because if the oceans die the entire planet dies soon after. This may yet turn out to be an ELE event - but it is the result of several causes, not just one.
The disaster at Fukushima has raised questions around the world about nuclear safety. But contamination is much worse in the Pacific Northwest of the United States. The former plutonium plant in Hanford, Washington is one of the most contaminated places on earth, and still decades from being cleaned up.