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Nuclear Accidents and Radioactive Contamination of Foods

INFOSAN - 30 March 2011







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    Brochure, flyer, fact-sheet
    Impact on Seafood Safety of the Nuclear Accident in Japan
    INFOSAN - 9 May 2011
    2011
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    The Tohoku earthquake and tsunami of 11 March 2011 caused extensive damage to the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant. Radioactive contamination of the Pacific Ocean following the nuclear incident has raised public concerns about seafood safety. Based on currently available information, some seafood in the direct vicinity of the nuclear power plant has been found to be contaminated at levels above the regulatory limits set by the Japanese Government, and control measures are in place to preven t its distribution. Radionuclide contamination, if any in seafood outside these areas, will be significantly below any public health concern, even in Pacific islands with high seafood consumption. Any additional radiation levels will contribute only a small amount to natural background radiation exposure. Further developments will be closely monitored and updates provided as appropriate.
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    Book (stand-alone)
    Data management and visualisation in response to large-scale nuclear emergencies affecting food and agriculture 2019
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    In a large-scale nuclear emergency affecting food and agriculture, the release of radionuclides to the environment can severely impact the food chain and human health. Up-to-date information of soil, water and crops are pertinent to informing decisions that prevent potentially contaminated products from reaching consumers. However, traditional management and visualisation of data are constrained in response times and decision-making accuracy as they are often not centralized and performed manually. Developments in information technology (IT) allow for Decision Support System (DSS) tools and algorithms to enhance real-time management of large volumes of data and decision-making in a spatio-temporal context. These IT support functions increase the capacity of stakeholders to focus on the most important matters at hand – ensuring food and consumer safety. This publication presents the challenges and solutions of real-time data management, geo-visualisation and decision making, as well as two case-studies of how innovative IT systems can assist in nuclear emergency response affecting food and agriculture. One of the case studies presented is by the Soil and Water Management and Crop Nutrition Laboratory of the Joint FAO/IAEA Division; the other case study by Japanese Competent Authorities in the aftermath of the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant accident.
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    Book (stand-alone)
    Sampling of agricultural soils and plants for radioactivity analysis 2022
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    The evaluation of radioactive releases to the environment is important for the support of sustainable development of agriculture, due to the potential for released radioactivity to enter food chain. The impact of radionuclides on the food chains are normally assessed by means of measurements of radioactivity in environmental samples, which include soils, feedstuffs, foodstuffs, and water. Sampling of agricultural soils and food, as well as measurement of various radionuclides for radioactivity requires efficient, cheap, effective and easily implemented techniques. The lack of such techniques may prevent the development of national infrastructures in providing the required level of food safety. This document provides the standard operating procedures (SOPs) for sampling and measurements of radionuclides in agriculture. It also includes an overview of the techniques relevant for agricultural soil and crops. Supplementary techniques such as the assessment of radiocaesium mobility in soils are also presented. The document is intended for individuals and authorities dealing with sampling and measurement of radionuclides in agricultural environments, and answered the many request for assistance from the IAEA Members in radionuclide measurements in agricultural soils and food items.

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