Radionuclide Studies and Information

Radionuclide Testing of subsistence-harvested Arctic Marine Mammals

1990’s: Samples were collected from Inuit subsistence hunters in Alaska and Nunavat, Canada, and radionuclides were analyzed in about 200 individual marine mammals, including beluga, narwhal, bowhead whale, walrus, polar bear, bearded seal, ringed seal, and spotted seal. Radionuclide levels observed ranged from undetectable to very low (several orders of magnitude below levels that would be of public health concern).¬†Future monitoring of radionuclides is suggested; however, these results do not provide any evidence of current health hazards from radionuclides in marine mammals used for human consumption in coastal regions of Arctic Alaska and Canada.

Publications:

Current Testing

For more information, contact Raphaela Stimmelmayr.

Publications:

2011 Fukushima fallout: Aerial deposition on the sea ice scenario and wildlife health implications

The testing for radioactivity as a causal factor in the 2011 Seal and Walrus UME was in response to hunters’ concerns about the Fukushima incident after the earthquake and tsunami in Japan. The results of this study indicate that there is no indication of radionuclide contamination in seals in the Bering and Chukchi Seas at this time. The DWM continues to monitor for radionuclides in all subsistence species.

This poster was presented at the 2014 Alaska Marine Science Symposium by Doug Dasher et al. The testing for radioactivity as a causal factor in the 2011 UME was in response to hunters’ concerns about the Fukushima incident after the earthquake and tsunami in Japan. The results of this study indicate that there is no indication of¬†radionuclide contamination in¬†seals in the Bering and Chukchi Seas at this time. For more information on radionuclide testing and radiation¬†click here.

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Information about Radiation and Wild Foods Safety in Alaska

Due to the nuclear accident in northeast Japan caused by the March 11, 2011, earthquake and tsunami, the State of Alaska has posted some information addressing the public’s concerns about radiation reaching Alaska. This information will be updated as new information becomes available. See the following documents online or upload them directly from the State of Alaska¬†website.

Project Chariot Radionuclide Studies

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