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Radiation from smartphones could be affecting memory performance in teenagers

Study suggests mobile phone radiation could affect teenagers’ memory performancehttps://www.irishnews.com/magazine/science/2018/07/20/news/study-suggests-mobile-phone-radiation-could-affect-teenagers-memory-performance-1388073/, 20 July, 2018 18:31

Radiation from smartphones could be affecting memory performance in teenagers, a new study has warned.

Scientists at the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH) have found that increased exposure to mobile phones over the course of a year negatively affects the figural memory – which refers to the human ability to understand images, shapes, patterns and objects – of adolescents.

According to the researchers, youngsters who hold their phone next to their right ear are more likely to be affected as figural memory is located in the right hemisphere of the brain.

The Swiss TPH team studied nearly 700 adolescents between the ages of 12 and 17, looking to see if there was a link between regular exposure to radiofrequency electromagnetic fields (RF-EMF) – which are produced by mobile phone technologies and other wireless devices – and memory performance.

They found that RF-EMF absorbed by the brain to be associated with a negative effect on figural memory performance.

Sending text messages, playing mobile games and browsing the internet were found to “cause only marginal RF-EMF exposure to the brain and were not associated with the development of memory performance”, the researchers said.

The study follows up a report in 2015 and more recent information on the absorption of RF-EMF in adolescents’ brains during different types of wireless communication device use.

Martin Roosli, head of Environmental Exposures and Health at Swiss TPH, said that further research is needed to rule out other factors.

He said: “For instance, the study results could have been affected by puberty, which affects both mobile phone use and the participant’s cognitive and behavioural state.”

While the potential effects of RF-EMF exposure to the brain is a relatively new field of scientific research, Dr Roosli advises that using headphones or turning on the phone’s loudspeaker could help reduce the exposure to RF-EMF.

He said: “It is not yet clear how RF-EMF could potentially affect brain processes or how relevant our findings are in the long-term.

“Potential risks to the brain can be minimised by using headphones or the loudspeaker while calling, in particular when network quality is low and the mobile phone is functioning at maximum power.”

The research is published in the journal Environmental Health Perspectives.

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July 21, 2018 Posted by | 2 WORLD, children | Leave a comment

Children’s eyes need protection from ultraviolet radiation

Get Your Sunglasses Out: UV-Radiation and Eye Health https://www.advancedsciencenews.com/get-your-sunglasses-out-uv-radiation-eye-health/ Bette Nijboer  July 19, 2018  

July 21, 2018 Posted by | 2 WORLD, children | Leave a comment

High levels of radioactive Caesium in Ukraine region around Chernobyl a threat to children

Ukrainian villages still suffering legacy of Chernobyl more than 30 years on https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2018-06/uoe-uvs060718.php  UNIVERSITY OF EXETER 

Milk in parts of Ukraine has radioactivity levels up to five times over the country’s official safe limit, new research shows.

Scientists from the Greenpeace Research Laboratories at the University of Exeter and the Ukrainian Institute of Agricultural Radiology sampled cow’s milk from private farms and homes in the Rivne region, about 200km from the site of the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant explosion in 1986. They found levels of radioactive caesium in milk above Ukraine’s safe limit for adults of 100 Becquerel per litre (Bq/L) at six of 14 settlements studied, and above the children’s limit of 40 Bq/L at eight sites.

The highest levels found were about 500 Bq/L – five times over the limit for adults and more than 12 times that for children.

“More than 30 years after the Chernobyl disaster, people are still routinely exposed to radioactive caesium when consuming locally produced staple foods, including milk, in Chernobyl-affected areas of Ukraine,” said Dr Iryna Labunska, of Greenpeace Research Laboratories at the University of Exeter.

“Many people in the area we studied keep cows for milk, and children are the main consumers of that milk.

“Though the level of soil contamination in the studied areas is not extremely high, radioactive caesium continues to accumulate in milk and other foods, such that the residents of these villages are chronically exposed to radioactivity that presents health risks to almost every system in the body – especially among children.”

The researchers say that some simple protective measures could be taken to bring radiation exposure levels below limits at a cost of less than 10 euros per person per year for the 8,300 people living in the six villages with the highest contamination.

Such measures include applying a caesium binder, called Ferrocyn, to cows, mineral fertilisation of potato fields and feeding pigs with uncontaminated fodder.

The cost of this would decrease each year as radiation levels fall – but if no action is taken, the experts warn that milk contamination will continue to exceed the 100?Bq/L adult limit in parts of Ukraine until at least 2040.

“The Ukrainian government has taken some of these measures in the past, but that stopped in 2009,” Dr Labunska said.

“Government and international monitoring needs to take place, along with help for people affected by this radiation.

“This situation should also act as a warning and a reminder of just how long the legacy of nuclear accidents can be.

“Without adequate countermeasures, what may now seem a purely historical event will remain a daily reality for those communities most impacted.”

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The paper, published in the journal Environment International, is entitled: “Current radiological situation in areas of Ukraine contaminated by the Chernobyl accident: Part 1. Human dietary exposure to Caesium-137 and possible mitigation measures.”

June 8, 2018 Posted by | children, environment, radiation, Ukraine | Leave a comment

Cancers in children near nuclear sites , and the risks to embryos

Ian Fairlie  London N8 https://www.lrb.co.uk/v40/n07/thomas-jones/diary  Vol. 40 No. 8 · 26 April 2018

Thomas Jones digs up Carol Barton’s research article from 2001, in which she relayed her findings that, between 1972 and 1996, the risk of child leukaemia within ten kilometres of Aldermaston and Burghfield was double the rate for the UK as a whole (LRB, 5 April). Barton was then a consultant haematologist at the Royal Berkshire Hospital. ‘Until the cause of cancer is fully understood, and what the part of radiation in the process could be,’ she wrote, ‘no firm measures can be taken to redress the balance.’

Research has moved on since then. More than sixty epidemiological studies worldwide have examined the incidence of cancer in children near nuclear power plants (NPPs): most indicate increases in leukaemia. These include the landmark 2008 KiKK study commissioned by the German government, which found relative risks of 1.6 in total cancers and 2.2 in leukaemias among infants living within five kilometres of all German NPPs.

A number of hypotheses have been proposed to explain these findings. One is that the increased cancers arise from the exposure of pregnant women near NPPs to radiation. However, any theory has to account for the greater than a thousand-fold discrepancy between official estimates of radiation doses from nuclear emissions and the observed increases in cancer risk. It may be that radiation exposures from spikes in NPP radionuclide emissions are significantly larger than the averages recorded in official estimates. In addition, the risks to embryos and foetuses from radiation exposure are much greater than to adults, and the blood-forming tissues in embryos and foetuses are even more radiosensitive.

 

May 2, 2018 Posted by | 2 WORLD, children, Reference | Leave a comment

United Nations report finds Chernobyl radiation has caused many cases of thyroid cancer

Thyroid cancer link to Chernobyl radiation  https://www.camdenadvertiser.com.au/story/5366901/thyroid-cancer-link-to-chernobyl-radiation/ Australian Associated Press, 26 Apr 18

Since the 1986 nuclear disaster at the Soviet Chernobyl reactor, one in four thyroid cancer cases has been caused by radiation in the region, UN scientists report in their first such estimate.

After reviewing various statistics and existing studies, the Vienna-based UN Scientific Committee on the Effects of Atomic Radiation said around 20,000 such cancers were registered between 1991 and 2015 in the area surrounding the reactor, which takes in all of Ukraine and Belarus, as well parts of Russia.

 This figure covers people who were younger than 18 years at the time of the nuclear accident.

“Thyroid cancer is a major problem after the Chernobyl accident and needs further investigation to better understand the long-term consequences,” UNSCEAR chairman Hans Vanmarcke said in a statement on Wednesday.

Based on limited data covering only the 1991-2005 period, UNSCEAR had previously put the total number of registered thyroid cancers in the region at 7000, but had not estimated the share that can be linked to radiation exposure.

The overall number of cases has increased nearly threefold to 20,000, not only because of radiation effects, but also because the group of people being monitored has been getting older, which has increased their natural risk of getting cancer.

In addition, the high awareness about thyroid cancer in the region and improved diagnostic methods have allowed doctors to detect a higher number of cases, UNSCEAR says in its paper.

April 27, 2018 Posted by | children, Ukraine | Leave a comment

Caring for Chernobyl’s children

Linda Walker’s healing touch,

Her Chernobyl Children’s Project UK helps the young seek respite and joy https://beyondnuclearinternational.org/2018/04/22/healing-chernobyl-kids/, By Linda Pentz Gunter

When a deadly nuclear power plant accident spreads radiation across the world, you can’t take it back.  That contamination, from the 1986 Chernobyl disaster in the Ukraine, hit neighboring Belarus the hardest. Not only those living there at the time, but children born since, have suffered the health effects of exposure to long-lasting radioactive fallout.

The long-term solution, of course, is to rid the world of nuclear power plants, ensuring that no one need suffer from their deadly poison again. But in the short-term, solutions are also needed to help those suffering today.  That is where Linda Walker stepped in.

Linda started her charity Chernobyl Children’s Project UK in 1995, inspired by Chernobyl Children International, founded in 1991 in Ireland by Adi Roche. Linda quickly realized that in addition to bringing children from Chernobyl-affected areas to the UK for so-called “radiation vacations,” something more was needed. She decided that her group needed to be active on the ground as well, in particular in Belarus.  She has been traveling to the country on a frequent basis ever since.

CCP(UK) began with just two local groups — in Glossopdale, Derbyshire and Littleborough, Lancashire.  In the summer of 1995, the first group of children arrived for a holiday.  Before that, however,  money was raised to send a reconditioned and aid-laden ambulance to Belarus — the first of many to follow.  By the end of the year, CCP(UK) had also sent a 40-foot trailer packed with humanitarian aid to Belarus.

By 1997, Linda’s work had already received such recognition in Belarus that she was made a member of the Order of Franciska Skarina, one of the country’s highest awards.  She was one of the first foreigners to receive it and accepted it on behalf of everyone involved with the work of CCP(UK).

There was much more to come. Under Linda’s leadership, CCP(UK) has supported children’s hospices;  trained orphanage staff; and routinely delivered ambulances and humanitarian aid to Belarus. CCP (UK) runs a foster care training program which has helped to get children out of the orphanages and into local families; and organizes a major program of educational visits to the UK, supported by the Department for International Development and UNICEF.

CCP UK) has worked closely with Zhuravichi Boarding Home for children with disabilities, providing them with toys, wheelchairs and mobility aids, taking their children for an annual holiday within the country and encouraging the authorities to improve the children’s education and care.

In 2000 CCP(UK) set up a home for four young adults with physical disabilities who had grown up at Zhuravichi; two years later CCP(UK) established a foster family home in Rogachev for five young children they had taken from Zhuravichi; and in 2004 Linda and her team opened the Mayflower Centre in Gomel.  This is the first 24-hour respite care centre in Belarus and supports many families with severely disabled children, so they can continue to care for them at home.  CCP(UK) has worked for many years with an association of such families in Rogachev and helped them, with support from the British Embassy in Minsk, to set up a Centre for their children.

The recuperative holiday program for children quickly expanded from Glossopdale and Littleborough to sites around the UK.  At first the program was available only to healthy children, but Linda and her team quickly saw the benefits to two children who participated who were in remission from cancer.  From then on,  children were also invited for recuperative holidays from the Children in Trouble Minsk-based charity which supports the families of children with cancer.

Willing to learn at every step, Linda then recognized that some children who had been ill, but were now well enough to travel to her UK program, were too young to go abroad alone.  So in 1997 a new CCP(UK) initiative was established that allowed the children’s mothers to travel with them.  Linda saw that these mothers had also been through a highly stressful time as their children fought cancer, and were almost if not as much in need of a holiday as the children. The mothers dubbed this the “Dream Come True” program.

Linda and her colleague also recognized that older children are even more refreshed and rejuvenated by her recuperation vacations.  She noted that when children fall ill in their early teens, by the time they are well enough to travel, there are few charities willing to invite them. So CCP(UK) stepped in to accommodate youngsters up to 20 years old as well. For the last 20 years 18 teenagers in remission from cancer have visited the UK every year.

Today, all the children CCP brings to the UK are in remission from cancer.

Linda also saw opportunity for similar respites within Belarus itself. In 1998 she arranged for 50 children from Zhuravichi Boarding Home and 50 from Garadyets Special School who had never had the chance of a holiday before, to travel across the country to a Holiday Camp at Neman, a beautiful site on the Polish border, near to Grodno.

To support this now annual effort, Linda has encouraged specialists to lend their services, sending medical students, physiotherapists, teachers, early years workers and many others who have raised their own air fares and then given two weeks of hard work.

In a March 30, 2006 article in The Guardian, marking the 20th anniversary of the Chernobyl nuclear accident, Linda reminded readers that more needs to be done to address the dreadful legacy left by the nuclear catastrophe.

“Regular visitors to Belarus cannot fail to be aware of the many health problems which, even today, seem to be more acute in the contaminated parts of the country,” she wrote.  “Twenty years on, young parents are giving birth to babies with disabilities or genetic disorders, or who develop serious diseases in their early months. But as far as we know, no research is being conducted into these issues.”

That same year, Linda was awarded a well-deserved MBE.

Linda Walker has not only called out the problems of Chernobyl.  She has come up with practical and meaningful solutions to at least alleviate some of the suffering. In doing so, she has drawn on-going attention to the terrible ravages of nuclear energy and the ever more urgent need to abolish it.

For more, see the Chernobyl Children’s Project UK website.

April 25, 2018 Posted by | children, Ukraine | Leave a comment

High incidence of birth deformities in Pacific communities exposed to French nuclear bomb testing

French overseas minister open to nuclear study https://www.onepng.com/2018/01/french-overseas-minister-open-to.html, 1/26/2018   The French overseas minister says she is not opposed to calls for a study into the possible genetic consequences of the French nuclear weapons tests in French Polynesia.

Annick Girardin has told journalists in Tahiti that there will be an answer to the recently raised calls for such a study.Last week, a child psychiatrist, who had worked in French Polynesia for years, suggested that an independent investigation be carried out after noticing a high incidence of disturbed and deformed children among the off-spring of people exposed to radiation from the atmospheric tests.

Girardin has acknowledged the concerns, saying it has to be established how to deal with the question and to see if it is possible to work on it with other countries.

The minister has restated that the former president Francois Hollande recognised two years ago in Papeete the French legacy and assumed responsibility.

She has also launched a project in Papeete to build an institute of archives and documents related to the tests.
She has also frozen the sale of land in the city previously used by the navy for its command for it to be able to be used for a memorial site.The head of the nuclear test veteran’s organisation Roland Oldham is dismissive, saying this will only see the light of day once people are dead.

He has continued to urge Paris to compensate the nuclear test victims suffering from poor health.

Until 2009, France claimed its weapons tests were clean but then passed a law accepting compensation demands.

Hundreds of applications have been filed since but almost all have been thrown out.

January 29, 2018 Posted by | children, France, OCEANIA, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Deaths of newborns increased in areas irradiated by Fukushima nuclear disaster

Academic paper: “Increases in perinatal mortality in prefectures contaminated by the Fukushima nuclear power plant accident in Japan”  Source Institute: 医療問題研究会

エビデンスに基づく保健・医学・薬学(EBM)の実践的研究を

Institute link : http://ebm-jp.com

Link to full text pdf: http://ebm-jp.com/wp-content/uploads/media-2016002-medicine.pdf

Authors and copyright:  Hagen Heinrich Scherb, Dr rer nat Dipl-Matha,∗, Kuniyoshi Mori, MDb, Keiji Hayashi, MDcEditor: Roman Leischik.

Abstract:

Descriptive observational studies showed upward jumps in secular European perinatal mortality trends after Chernobyl.

The question arises whether the Fukushima nuclear power plant accident entailed similar phenomena in Japan. For 47 prefectures representing 15.2 million births from 2001 to 2014, the Japanese government provides monthly statistics on 69,171 cases of perinatal death of the fetus or the newborn after 22 weeks of pregnancy to 7 days after birth.

Employing change-point methodology for detecting alterations in longitudinal data, we analyzed time trends in perinatal mortality in the Japanese prefectures stratified by exposure to estimate and test potential increases in perinatal death proportions after Fukushima possibly associated with the earthquake, the tsunami, or the estimated radiation exposure.

Areas with moderate to high levels of radiation were compared with less exposed and unaffected areas, as were highly contaminated areas hit versus untroubled by the earthquake and the tsunami. Ten months after the earthquake and tsunami and the subsequent nuclear accident, perinatal mortality in 6 severely contaminated prefectures jumped up from January 2012 onward: jump odds ratio 1.156; 95% confidence interval (1.061, 1.259), P-value 0.0009.

There were slight increases in areas with moderate levels of contamination and no increases in the rest of Japan.

In severely contaminated areas, the increases of perinatal mortality 10 months after Fukushima were essentially independent of the numbers of dead and missing due to the earthquake and the tsunami. Perinatal mortality in areas contaminated with radioactive substances started to increase 10 months after the nuclear accident relative to the prevailing and stable secular downward trend. These results are consistent with findings in Europe after Chernobyl. 

Since observational studies as the one presented here may suggest but cannot prove causality because of unknown and uncontrolled factors or confounders, intensified research in various scientific disciplines is urgently needed to better qualify and quantify the association of natural and artificial environmental radiation with detrimental genetic health effects at the population level….. more https://nuclearexhaust.wordpress.com/2017/11/27/academic-paper-increases-in-perinatal-mortality-in-prefectures-contaminated-by-the-fukushima-nuclear-power-plant-accident-in-japan

 

November 27, 2017 Posted by | children, Fukushima continuing, Japan, Reference, women | Leave a comment

12 year study on children’s teeth led to stopping of atmospheric nuclear bomb tests

The analysis revealed a spike in strontium-90 levels in children born between 1954 and 1955. This coincided with a period of extensive nuclear testing that started in 1953. Among these children, strontium-90 levels were also found to be higher in those who were bottle-fed compared to those who were breastfed.

This observation further emphasized that the children were absorbing the radioactive element from the environment — picture acres of dairy farms showered with rain that has just passed through kilometers of atmosphere containing radioactive dust.

Experiments explained: Baby Tooth Survey  In June 1963, shortly after publishing the first phase of the study, Dr. Eric Reiss, one of the main participating scientists, presented the findings in testimony before the American Senate committee. Two months later, the Partial Test Ban Treaty (PTBT) between the United States, the Soviet Union, and Britain was signed. This agreement prevented countries from performing test detonations of nuclear weapons, except for those conducted underground.

During a second phase of the study, a 50 per cent decline in strontium-90 was seen in children born in 1968, thanks in part to the PTBT that Franklin and her team helped bring about.


Ursula Franklin’s contributions to reforming the regulation of nuclear weapons, Varsity,   https://thevarsity.ca/2017/09/25/experiments-explained-baby-tooth-survey/ 
By Farah Badr,

 ZAHRA DANAEI/THE VARSITY, Humanity has been fundamentally transformed by the discovery of nuclear radiation and radioactive chemical elements. Marie and Pierre Curie discovered radium in the late 1890s, following Henri Becquerel’s discovery of radioactivity. Since then, World War I has led to the advent of the first X-ray machine, which treated injured soldiers, and World War II has brought upon the development of weapons of mass destruction.

Not long after, scientists began collecting radioactive baby teeth on American land: the unexpected aftermath of harnessing the unprecedented power of nuclear radiation.

One of those scientists was Ursula Franklin, the first female to receive the University Professor distinction at U of T in 1984. Franklin was an academic, an educator, a prolific writer, a highly vocal and active pacifist and feminist, but also held the lesser known titles of metallurgist, archaeometrist, practicing Quaker, and Holocaust survivor.

It is perhaps the result of her impactful social activism and visionary writings on war, globalism, social justice, and technology that some attention has been drawn away from Franklin’s scientific achievements.

One such accomplishment was a high-profile study that started in 1958. In collaboration with a number of scientists, Franklin investigated the impact of ground nuclear weapon testing, which had begun in the early 1940s in prelude to the attack on Japan at the end of World War II. Radioactive elements, one of which was strontium-90, had been released for the first time into the environment due to this nuclear weapon testing. Strontium-90 chemically resembles the important nutritional element calcium, leading to its incorporation along with calcium into the bones and teeth of developing unborn babies, which continues even after their birth.

Over the course of the 12-year study, the team collected more than 300,000 shed baby teeth, mostly from children in St. Louis, Missouri. The researchers incinerated and pulverized the teeth before extracting and analyzing its composite minerals.

The analysis revealed a spike in strontium-90 levels in children born between 1954 and 1955. This coincided with a period of extensive nuclear testing that started in 1953. Among these children, strontium-90 levels were also found to be higher in those who were bottle-fed compared to those who were breastfed.

This observation further emphasized that the children were absorbing the radioactive element from the environment — picture acres of dairy farms showered with rain that has just passed through kilometers of atmosphere containing radioactive dust.

In June 1963, shortly after publishing the first phase of the study, Dr. Eric Reiss, one of the main participating scientists, presented the findings in testimony before the American Senate committee. Two months later, the Partial Test Ban Treaty (PTBT) between the United States, the Soviet Union, and Britain was signed. This agreement prevented countries from performing test detonations of nuclear weapons, except for those conducted underground.

During a second phase of the study, a 50 per cent decline in strontium-90 was seen in children born in 1968, thanks in part to the PTBT that Franklin and her team helped bring about.

September 30, 2017 Posted by | children, history, radiation, Reference, weapons and war | Leave a comment

Climate change affecting huge numbers of children in Africa

Climate change’s brutal toll on Africanewsroom, 9 Jul 17   United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund The vast majority of child migrants uprooted by violence, poverty and climate change remain in Africa, write UNICEF’s Lachlan Forsyth and Patrick Rose

The vast majority of child migrants uprooted by violence, poverty and climate change remain in Africa, according to a new report by child rights organisation UNICEF.

It is a bitter irony that the countries that have done the least to cause climate change are going to suffer the most. Countries that have minuscule carbon footprints are going to be the first to suffer the consequences of flooding, drought and displacement.

In West and Central Africa, the impact of climate change will be especially severe, with the region set to experience a 3 to 4 degree rise in temperature this century – more than one and a half times higher than anywhere else on the planet.

For the millions of people living in this vast region, longer droughts and intense storms will make farming and herding more difficult, and people will be forced to seek a better life.

Already, children account for more than half of the 12 million West and Central African people on the move each year. Contrary to many opinions, 75 percent of them remain in sub-Saharan Africa, with fewer than one in five heading to Europe.

This current wave of migrants is just the start of a swelling humanitarian crisis. Migration involving children and young people is likely to increase due to rapid population growth and urbanisation, climate change, inequitable economic development, and persistent conflict.

Poverty is a powerful driver of migration in West and Central Africa. Countries with high levels of poverty are more likely to be a source of migration as people look to improve their lot in life. In interviews conducted by UNICEF, migrants describe the feeling of ‘having nothing to lose,’ aware that by migrating they are taking a risk, but it is a gamble that might pay off.

Helene is one of them. She is 14 years old, holding a sign saying “I am a child, and not a commodity.”……..

With drought and temperatures intensifying in West and Central Africa, tensions in accessing scarce resources for cattle are also increasing hostilities in many rural areas, pushing greater numbers of people towards cities. But with more than 100 million people living in coastal cities less than one metre above sea level, even conservative estimates of a sea-level rise could result in the forced displacement of millions of climate refugees as people seek safety for their families and children.

For organisations like UNICEF, the challenges are enormous and complex. Aid money can only fix so much, when monumental societal changes are required also. Until the root causes of poverty are addressed, and solutions provided in the form of economic opportunities, access to health care and access to quality education, people are likely to continue to take dangerous risks migrating for better opportunities.

Unless the long-term planning of governments and civil society is equipped to anticipate these climate shocks and subsequent migration, the unmitigated impact of these forces will create detrimental outcomes for children across the region.

To read the full UNICEF report, click  here  https://www.newsroom.co.nz/2017/07/09/37772/climate-changes-brutal-toll-on-africa

July 10, 2017 Posted by | AFRICA, children, climate change | Leave a comment

2,397,863 registered Chernobyl-related health victims. 453,391 ARE CHILDREN

https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/world/2016/04/17/clinic-ukraine-chernobyl-30th-anniversary-health-impact/82892592/  THERE ARE 2,397,863 PEOPLE REGISTERED WITH UKRAINE’S HEALTH MINISTRY TO RECEIVE ONGOING CHERNOBYL-RELATED HEALTH TREATMENT. OF THESE, 453,391 ARE CHILDREN.  Kim Hjelmgaard , USA TODAY There are 2,397,863 people registered with Ukraine’s health ministry to receive ongoing Chernobyl-related health care. Of these, 453,391 are children — none born at the time of the accident. Their parents were children in 1986. These children have a range of illnesses: respiratory, digestive, musculoskeletal, eye diseases, blood diseases, cancer, congenital malformations, genetic abnormalities, trauma. 

KIEV, Ukraine — Daryna Bizilya, 10, wants to be a singer. During a visit with her and about a dozen other children at Ukraine’s largest medical clinic for people living with the consequences of Chernobyl, that’s what she did: She sang.

Bizilya walked directly into the middle of the room, signaled to her friend in the corner holding a cellphone to crank up its digital beatbox, and just went for it. She sang with feeling, dramatic facial expressions and large, sweeping arm gestures that occasionally ended with a clenched fist.

This clinic had an elaborate name, even by former Communist-bloc standards — the Institute of Specialized Radiation Protection of the Ukraine Population. It was full of sick children whose entire lives had only known illness.

The halls were long and dark and seemed, however improbably, to be lit chiefly by fading avocado-colored paint. The children’s bedrooms were neat but gloomy. Textbook orphanage-interior. Not every room was heated, and it was cold outside.

The number she performed was by Ukrainian artist Ani Lorak, a hero of Bizilya’s. On her website, Lorak describes herself as the “singer who became the idol of Ukrainians.”

Bizilya, whose favorite subjects are math and English, said she admired Lorak mostly because she “sings from her heart, and she feels her songs with her heart.”

Bizilya has a heart condition brought on by eating contaminated food, her doctors said. Too much physical exercise makes her condition worse.

“They told us at school that some children were left without a home, and that they were very ill,” she said when asked to explain what she knew about Chernobyl. “I would like to help those children who are without parents. There are children in our village like this,” she added.

Daryna does not think of herself as especially ill.

Artemchuk also has ambitions to be a singer.

“Probably a pop singer, like Michael Jackson,” he said.

He had some other things to say: Favorite food (meatballs), soccer team (Dynamo Kiev) and player (Real Madrid’s Cristiano Ronaldo).

“The doctor says I have very bad blood circulation,” he suddenly volunteered. “My parents say that Chernobyl was a big disaster and many people perished because of it.”

A girl named Alina Aponchuk, also 14, was too nervous to speak and fiddled with the sleeves of her dress. There was something on her mind. After a few minutes, she said she was going home the next day.

Aponchuk’s doctor said she had two left kidneys, both twice the normal size. She had chronic gastroduodenitis, which produces sharp stomach pains, lethargy and headaches. She also had “vegetative dysfunction,” a nervous system syndrome that causes anxiety, depression and other emotional stresses.

Vadim Bozhenko, the doctor who runs the clinic, said children stay at the institute from a few days to several weeks and all come from areas located on radioactive land.

“The (children) eat and drink contaminated milk products because cattle that live there eat that grass,” he said, adding that the clinic was underfunded by at least 30%.

Looking around the grounds that evoked a disheveled college campus, it was hard to believe the shortfall was that modest.

“Tell them we need beds and blankets,” Bozhenko said. “Tell them the Institute of Specialized Radiation Protection of the Ukraine Population needs this and a lot more.”

May 5, 2017 Posted by | children, PERSONAL STORIES, Ukraine | Leave a comment

Polluted water: the health toll of fracking on young babies

Fracking kills newborn babies – polluted water likely cause http://www.theecologist.org/News/news_round_up/2988876/fracking_kills_newborn_babies_polluted_water_likely_cause.htmlOliver Tickell, 25th April 2017  A new study in Pennsylvania, USA shows that fracking is strongly related to increased mortality in young babies. The effect is most pronounced in counties with many drinking water wells indicating that contamination by ‘produced water’ from fracking is a likely cause. Radioactive pollution with uranium, thorium and radium is a ‘plausible explanation’ for the excess deaths.

A new study of Pennsylvania counties published today in the Journal of Environmental Protection shows for the first time that contamination from fracking kills babies.

The Marcellus shale area of Pennsylvania was one of the first regions where novel gas drilling involving hydraulic fracturing of sub-surface rock, now termed ‘fracking’, was carried out.

The epidemiological study by Christopher Busby and Joseph Mangano examines early infant deaths 0-28 days before and after the drilling of fracking wells, using official data from the US Centre for Disease Control to compare the immediate post-fracking four year period 2007-2010 with the pre-fracking four-year period 2003-2006.

Results showed a statistically significant 29% excess risk of dying age 0-28 days in the ten heavily fracked counties of Pennsylvania during the four-year period following the development of fracking gas wells. Over the same period, the State rate declined by 2%. They conclude:

“There were about 50 more babies died in these 10 counties than would have been predicted if the rate had been the same over the period as all of Pennsylvania, where the incidence rate fell over the same period.”

Radioactive water pollution to blame?

The Marcellus shale beneath Pennsylvania was one of the first areas where fracking began. Only 44 fracking wells were drilled before 2007, while 2,864 were drilled in 2007-2010.

The cause of the excess mortality is not proven in the study, however the authors point out that the fracking production process releases naturally occurring radioactive materials from shale strata which then contaminate groundwater.

These include radium, uranium, thorium and radon, an intensely radioactive gas which decays into radioactive ‘daughters’ with a half life of under four days. And as the authors write, fracking “involves the explosive destruction of large volumes of underground gas and oil retaining rocks and the pumping down of large amounts of what is termed ‘produced water’ which initially contains various chemical and sand additives.

“This produced water and backflow returns to the surface with a high load of dissolved and suspended solids including naturally occurring radioactive elements … The contaminated water has to be safely disposed of but this is often associated with violations of legal disposal constraints.”

Baby mortality related to exposure through water wells

In the five heavily-fracked counties in the northeast part of the state (Susquehanna, Bradford, Wyoming, Lycoming and Tioga), the number of deaths from 2003-2006 vs. 2007-2010 climbed from 36 to 60, a statistically significant rate increase of 66%.

The rate in the five counties in southwest Pennsylvania (Washington, Westmoreland, Greene, Butler and Fayette) rose 18%, from 157 to 178 deaths, though this increase was not statistically significant.

This divergence in relative risk between the heavily fracked NE and SW counties was initially perplexing, however the authors noticed the higher dependence on private water wells (potentially contaminated with frackiing fluids) for drinking water and other needs in the first region compared to the second.

In the NE group of counties , the number of water wells per birth ranged from 4.9 to 13.5, compared to 1.1 to 3 in the SW group of countries. Their chart of Relative Risk for early infant mortality after fracking (see image above right) plotted against ‘exposure’ defined as ‘water wells per birth’ on a county by county basis produced a straight-line graph – indicated a strong relation to increased mortality and exposure to groundwater.

Table [on original]: Water wells per birth and violations per annual birth in highly fracked Pennsylvania Counties.

They conclude: “The results therefore seem to support the suggestion that the vector for the effect is exposure to drinking water from private wells. This is a mechanistically plausible explanation. However the findings do not prove such a suggestion. We may examine other possible explanations for possible health effects which have been advanced.”

While radioactive pollution is carefully examined, the authors acknowledge alternatives including “the existence of chemical contaminants in the produced water” which they consider a “possible but unknown factor.”

Serious questions raised over health hazards of fracking

“A major component of early infant mortality is congenital malformation, e.g., heart, neurological, and kidney defects. These are known to be caused by exposures to Radium and Uranium in drinking water”, said Christopher Busby.

“Infant death rates were significantly high in highly-fracked counties in northeast Pennsylvania, those with the greatest density of private water wells, suggesting it is drinking water contamination driving the effect.”

Joseph Mangano added: “These results raise serious questions about potential health hazards of fracking, especially since the fetus and infant are most susceptible to environmental pollutants. This is a public health issue which should be investigated wherever fracking is being carried out or proposed.”

The result is expected to have significant insurance, investment, economic and downstream political implications in the US and other countries.

 

The study: ‘There’s a world going on underground-infant mortality and fracking in Pennsylvania‘ is by Busby C C and Mangano J J and published in the Journal of Environmental Protection 8(4) 2017. doi: 10.4236/jep.2017.84028

Dr Busby is the Scientific Secretary of the European Committee on Radiation Risk www.ecrr.eu and is Scientific Director of Environmental Research SIA, based in the Latvian National Academy of Sciences, Riga, Latvia. Busby’s CV can be found here.

April 29, 2017 Posted by | children, Reference, USA | Leave a comment

Film: Chernobyl disaster’s continuing impact on the children

 

Full Documentary Films – Children of Chernobyl – Discovery Channel Documentaries

It’s Been 30 Years And Chernobyl Is Still Having An Impact – Especially On The Children http://goodstuffbuzz.com/30-years-chernobyl/   [excellent photos] On that fateful day in April of 1986, many already knew what the future would hold. While nuclear power we being sold as the “safe” alternative to our addiction to fossil fuels, we had already dodged a bullet with Three Mile Island. In fact, a meltdown was a more frightening (and possible) prospect than an all out global exchange of bombs with our enemies.
 
These Are The Faces Of Chernobyl, Both Good 

And Not So

Still, when it happened, when Russia finally had to come clean and explain what had happened at Chernobyl, the writing was all over the wall. Nuclear power would become a pariah. An entire industry and science would have to answer for what happened halfway across the planet, and watchful eyes would be set on the city surrounding the power plant. How would this accident affect the population, and what lessons could we learn about the release of so much radiation into the atmosphere?
Many Feel The Russian Government Has Abandoned Them
Part of the answer comes in a terrifying documentary – included here – called The Children of Chernobyl. Both literal and figurative, the film follows the decades since a main reactor went down and sent fatal fallout throughout the countryside. It addresses both the international concerns and the local lies. Even now, in a more open society, Russia is still secret about the consequences of the leak. This movie makes it clear about what really happened.
Especially, The Children

Particularly, The Children

The high levels of radiation had random effects on the people of Chernobyl as well as those in the outlying areas. Animals died. Land became barren. And in one of the most heartbreaking consequences, children were born with various genetic and biological aberrations. These “mutants” became an embarrassment for the government and their treatment will anger you. Thirty years ago, the world got as close to a full blown nuclear meltdown as we are likely to ever see. The aftermath continues to linger, and anger.

January 6, 2017 Posted by | children, Resources -audiovicual, Ukraine | Leave a comment

Newborn baby deaths significantly increased in areas radioactively polluted by Fukushima nuclear disaster

Increases in perinatal mortality in prefectures contaminated by the Fukushima nuclear power plant accident in Japan A spatially stratified longitudinal study

 Hagen Heinrich Scherb, Dr rer nat Dipl-Matha,∗ , Kuniyoshi Mori, MDb , Keiji Hayashi, MDc 
Abstract
Descriptive observational studies showed upward jumps in secular European perinatal mortality trends after Chernobyl. The question arises whether the Fukushima nuclear power plant accident entailed similar phenomena in Japan. For 47 prefectures representing 15.2 million births from 2001 to 2014, the Japanese government provides monthly statistics on 69,171 cases of perinatal death of the fetus or the newborn after 22 weeks of pregnancy to 7 days after birth.
Employing change-point methodology for detecting alterations in longitudinal data, we analyzed time trends in perinatal mortality in the Japanese prefectures stratified by exposure to estimate and test potential increases in perinatal death proportions after Fukushima possibly associated with the earthquake, the tsunami, or the estimated radiation exposure. Areas with moderate to high levels of radiation were compared with less exposed and unaffected areas, as were highly contaminated areas hit versus untroubled by the earthquake and the tsunami.
Ten months after the earthquake and tsunami and the subsequent nuclear accident, perinatal mortality in 6 severely contaminated prefectures jumped up from January 2012 onward: jump odds ratio 1.156; 95% confidence interval (1.061, 1.259), P-value 0.0009. There were slight increases in areas with moderate levels of contamination and no increases in the rest of Japan. In severely contaminated areas, the increases of perinatal mortality 10 months after Fukushima were essentially independent of the numbers of dead and missing due to the earthquake and the tsunami. Perinatal mortality in areas contaminated with radioactive substances started to increase 10 months after the nuclear accident relative to the prevailing and stable secular downward trend.
These results are consistent with findings in Europe after Chernobyl. Since observational studies as the one presented here may suggest but cannot prove causality because of unknown and uncontrolled factors or confounders, intensified research in various scientific disciplines is urgently needed to better qualify and quantify the association of natural and artificial environmental radiation with detrimental genetic health effects at the population level. …….http://ebm-jp.com/wp-content/uploads/media-2016002-medicine.pdf

October 12, 2016 Posted by | children, Fukushima 2016, Japan, Reference | 3 Comments

Media censors coverage of depleted uranium’s use, and its devastating effects on health

Fallujah-babyDeadly Radioactive Dust and Dying Children: US-NATO Use of Depleted Uranium (DU) Ammunition http://www.globalresearch.ca/deadly-radioactive-dust-and-dying-children-us-nato-use-of-depleted-uranium-du-ammunition/5545973

Award-Winning Filmmaker Shunned for Exposing the Truth The fate of Frieder Wagner is a peculiar example of what happens when you stand up to the establishment’s injustice. A notable director who won the prestigious German Grimme Award, responsible for numerous documentaries for the ARD and ZDF channels, he quickly became a pariah after making a movie called Deadly Dust (Todesstaub) about the use of depleted uranium (DU) shells by NATO forces in the Middle East and in the former Yugoslavia.

In an exclusive interview with Sputnik, Wagner explained that Deadly Dust is based on an earlier documentary called The Doctor, the Depleted Uranium, and the Dying Children (Der Arzt und die verstrahlten Kinder von Basra) that he filmed for WDR. In April 2004 the movie was screened during the anniversary of the Chernobyl nuclear disaster. But even though that autumn it received the ÖkoMedia award, it was never screened again. And no matter what ideas he came up with, the TV channels that he previously worked with stopped sending him new orders for some reason.

“I contacted a head of the WDR editorial office whom I’d worked with before and asked him what happened. He paused for a second and then told me “The WDR editorial office considers you a ‘difficult’ person. And most importantly, the topics you suggest are especially hard. Right now I’ve got nothing more to tell you”,” Wagner explained.

He added that about a year ago he met with Siegesmund von Ilsemann, an editor at Spiegel magazine who wrote a comprehensive report about the ‘deadly dust’ and its effects, and who revealed to the astonished director that the use of depleted uranium by the military literally became a taboo subject in Germany.

“He told me that the issue of DU munitions use and its consequences became taboo in Germany. And no TV channel or newspaper would allow even him – a person who worked on this subject for a long time – to publish anything related to it,” Wagner added.

DU shells are made of byproducts of uranium enrichment. Their superior armor-piercing capabilities make them a potent anti-tank weapon, especially considering that when an armored vehicle gets hit by such a shell, the impact and subsequent release of heat energy causes it to ignite, incinerating the target’s interior. But it’s the ‘deadly dust’ produced by a DU shell detonation that is probably the most insidious aspect of this type of ordnance.

“At such a high temperature the substance – depleted uranium – burns down to nano-particles, each of them a hundred times smaller than a red blood cell. And due to their extremely small size, these particles ‘travel’ through a human body, infiltrating brain, lungs, kidneys, placenta, bloodstream and even sperm and egg cells which causes severe developmental diseases in newborns,” Wagner said.

According to him, US forces actively used DU munitions in Kosovo, Somalia, Libya and during both Iraqi campaigns, not to mention that they keep using them in Afghanistan up to this day.

“I’ve travelled to Iraq and Kosovo myself. We collected soil, water and tissue samples. All tissue samples contained depleted uranium particles, and even worse, they contained the so called uranium-236 which can only be produced artificially,” he said.

He also pointed out that the families of 16 out of 109 Italian soldiers who died of cancer sued the Italian government. During the trials, which the plaintiffs won, it was established that the fatal disease in all cases was caused by the use of DU munitions in Iraq and Kosovo.

And yet, much to Wagner’s surprise, no global wave of outrage spearheaded by the UN, Amnesty International and similar organizations took place over these developments.

“It should’ve happened a long time ago. In 2001 in Germany and in many other European nations the press wrote a lot about the first deaths among the Spanish and Portuguese soldiers in Kosovo. The then-Defense Minister of Germany Rudolf Scharping nearly lost his position. But then NATO and the UN decreed that this topic must be removed from the media – and they succeeded,” Wagner surmised.

September 19, 2016 Posted by | children, media, secrets,lies and civil liberties | Leave a comment