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Sunday, September 08, 2013

 

The horrible, terrible, deadly danger of coating yourself in banana pudding

You knew that bananas are radioactive didn't you?  The delicious yellow fruit looks so innocent sitting in the produce section of the supermarket ... is full of radioactivity!  It's a killer fruit.  And that granite countertop that you installed?  Radioactive!  If you're not careful, if you stacked bananas on your granite countertop you may set off a nuclear explosion that could devastate half your state.  That is, if you believe the people who write for the press.

That was the subject of an article in PJ Media by Charlie Martin about this rather sensational story from Natural News
Japan’s nuclear watchdog has now declared the leak of radioactive water from Fukushima a “state of emergency.” Each day, 300 tons of radioactive water seeps into the ocean, and it’s now clear that TEPCO has engage [sic] in a two-and-a-half-year cover-up of immense magnitude.

Just how out of control is the situation at Fukushima? It’s so out of control that TEPCO recently had to admit 10 of its workers were somehow — yeah, see if you can figure this out — sprayed with highly radioactive water while waiting for a bus.

“The workers’ exposure above the neck was found to be as much as 10 becquerels per square centimeter,” reports Bloomberg.com

How exactly did highly radioactive water manage to find its way to a bus stop in the first place?
Sounds pretty bad, doesn't it? Will these workers live? Do you know what a Becquerel (Bq) is?

I'll let Charlie Martin explain. He explains it in terms of those radioactive bananas (read the whole thing for the details).

Since you went back and re-read that 2011 post when I linked it (you didn’t? But what if there’s a quiz?) you’ll recall that there is a somewhat-joking unit called the banana equivalent. Bananas, like everything else, are slightly radioactive by nature, and in fact it turns out that since bananas concentrate potassium, they’re a little more radioactive than a lot of other things. So, a banana equivalent amount of radioactivity is something that has about the same number of decays per second as a banana does. So what’s the banana-equivalent in Bq?

A normal-sized 150g banana produces about 20 Bq.

So, the “highly radioactive water”? It’s roughly equivalent in radiation danger to coating yourself in banana pudding.
As an aside, the Virginian Pilot has been telling us all the horrible, terrible, deadly, disastrous thing that could happen to us if mining for uranium were allowed in Virginia.  The next time they write one of their hysterical editorials, I'm going to ask them how many bananas would equal the destructive power of an accident at a uranium mine.  

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