Bill to Address Radiation Concerns
By Jade Bruhjell
Hawaii, a close neighbor of the nuclear disaster at Fukushima, sits poised to be further enveloped by radioactive elements brought by air and Pacific Ocean currents from Japan. Being a new sort of disaster, we find ourselves stunned and confused with conflicting reports, and after over two years, still unable to fathom how to cope with a continuing and escalating catastrophe here in our Island chain. Sea life and drinking water are two of the most affected aspects, and on Molokai, fishing is such a part of daily life that we need to think seriously about current levels of radiation.
To address this problem, a bill has been introduced to Hawaii legislature that would require the Department of Health to conduct a five-year to study radiation levels in Hawaii.
Currently, our government is not measuring, at least to our knowledge, suspected areas of concern, and has stated that they quit measuring back in 2011. How can we safely be assured that our food products, drinking water, rain, and debris on our beaches are not contaminated when we know that we are in the radiation plumes? Dairy farms on Hawaii Island have been measured and are showing elevated levels of radiation. The projected ocean plumes of radiation from Japan have already swept by us, hit California, and are returning to us again as shown by scientific dispersion charts.
In Tokyo and other areas, the Japanese people are buying rad meters and doing their own measuring as their government is not doing it.
Senate Bill 3049 and House Bill 2600 would require implementation of a radiation monitoring pilot project. If passed, the Department of Health will measure and monitor radiation levels in items such as food, dairy products, rainwater, aquifers, and drainage ditches that may be susceptible to increased radiation levels due to the March 11, 2011, Fukushima nuclear disaster, and submit periodic reports on the department’s website of those radiation levels and their significance to the state.
Please help pass these bills as our health, wellbeing and genetic future are at stake. You may submit testimony online at capitol.hawaii.gov/submittestimony.aspx.
For more information on Molokai, contact Jade at 553-4243.