15 Mar Information from British Embassy
Telephone briefing from Sir John Beddington, the UK’s Chief Scientific adviser and Hilary Walker Deputy Director Emergency Preparedness at the Department of Health.
“Unequivocally, Tokyo will not be affected by the radiation fallout of explosions that have occurred or may occur at the Fukushima nuclear power stations.”
The danger area is limited to within the 30 kilometer evacuation zone and no one will be allowed to enter this area other than those directly involved in the emergency procedures currently being undertaken at both Fukushima 1 & 2.
Sir John went on to answer a series of questions including a comparison between Chernobyl and Japan. He said, “they are entirely different. Chernobyl exploded and there was a subsequent fire with radioactive materials being launched 30,000 ft into the air”. The maximum height of any Fukushima explosions would be no more than 500 metres.
“The amount of radiation that has been released is miniscule and would have to be in the order of 1,000 or more for it to be a threat to humans” This was confirmed by Hilary Walker.
Sir John went on to say that the Japanese authorities are doing their best to keep the reactors cooled and that this is a continuing operation. All workers on site dealing with the emergency are being fully decontaminated at the end of each shift. When asked how reliable the information coming from the Japanese authorities was as to radiation levels he said, “this cannot be fabricated and the Japanese authorities are posting all the readings on the recognized international information sites which they are
obliged to do. Independent verification shows that the data provided are accurate”.
In answer to a specific question from the Head of the BritishSchool in Tokyo, Sir John Beddington and Hilary Walker said that there was no reason at all for the school to be closed unless there were other issues such as power outages and transport problems.
David Fitton, First Minister at the British Embassy in Tokyo moderated the teleconference and confirmed that a transcript of the briefing will be available on the Embassy website later today.
Additionally the amount of radiation we all experience at lunchtime in Tokyo is less than a typical day in Hong Kong, so I think we are all okay at the moment.
Thanks to Mr. Harsh Obrai for forwarding this to us.