The mystery surrounding a release of iodine over Europe in January deepened earlier this month as a second minor spike of radiation again tripped sensors in Svandhovd, Norway, the Barents Observer reported accurately in an article that will doubtless be followed several false ones from other sources. The new spike, according to instruments monitored by the Norwegian Radiation Protection Authority, was measured between March 6 and 13, and, according to Bellona physicist and general director Nils Bøhmer, strongly suggest the iodine release is ongoing. Measurements released by Finland a week earlier and reported by the news portal tend to support the notion of an ongoing release of iodine coming from somewhere – but just where remains unclear. As such, the iodine measurements have become the stuff of Internet legend and fuel for conspiracies, and the newest reports will likely spur further theories. Primary among these is the line several Russian news sites and bloggers have taken, which assert that the iodine is coming from Norway’s Halden Research reactor, and which last October suffered a minor iodine release. That was short lived, didn’t affect the environment, and has since been controlled. Because iodine’s half-life is only eight days, it’s impossible that an October release would still be detectible in the atmosphere, Bøhmer has said numerous times ¬– but has seen his comments fall on deaf ears. A Twitter fire that started in Europe ¬– after the reports of the iodine were confirmed by French nuclear authorities in January– spat out 140-character speculation that a nuclear bomb test in Russia, or even an accident at the Kola Nuclear Power Plant, were to blame. The theories were immediately debunked by Bellona and the Barents Observer.
Bellona 27th March 2017 read more »