30 years after Chernobyl and five years after the triple meltdown at TEPCO’s Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, the shadows of both disasters still loom large. In the wake of Fukushima, I joined Greenpeace monitoring teams on the ground trying to quantify and communicate the impact of radiation on the population. Documenting environmental damage and injustice is something Greenpeace has been doing for more than 40 years, but one question has always bothered me. How do you shine a light on something that is invisible? We found our answer in a custom built LED light stick which, when connected to a Geiger counter, allows radiation levels to be measured and displayed in real-time. Take a long exposure photograph of a contaminated area and walk through it with this tool, and suddenly you have an undulating wall of light, exposing and visually mapping radiation in the environment. Using this tool in areas affected by Chernobyl and Fukushima, we found that places which have been “decontaminated” by the authorities consistently exhibit radiation levels elevated above official limits. Radiation endures. In Russia’s Bryansk region, 30 years after the disaster, we found levels of contamination comparable to places in Fukushima today.
Greenpeace 21st April 2016 read more »
Just 158 people returned to live in the contaminated area after a nuclear plant exploded 30 years ago this week. The New Day meets a few of them.
Mirror 22nd April 2016 read more »