Thursday, March 17, 2011

Day 52-morning post

Wow poor Japan, I realize in times like this, life can seem very scary, but we must all move forward and try to make the best lives we can, of course our prayers go with the Japanese and the Chinese in this time of trouble.  It is now time to turn inward and to contemplate how this event will change our lives and what we can do to pre-pair. they are many tasks that lie ahead of us, for us and for these dear people, our task of helping them monetarily will help them to put their lives back on task and help to give us a sense of peace as we can not all go in person.

Those of us in other country's must consider what we can do to protect are animals and our self's from any "small" amounts of radiation that may occure from this horrible tragedy. First you need to beaware of what we are up agaist.  PU 239 when mixed with U325 is a deadly, unstable mess.

It is nice to believe in others, but with out educationg our selfs to the facts of life, we are sheep standing on the edge of the abyss with no hope, me I like hope and lots of

Brief description: plutonium was the second transuranium element of the actinide series to be discovered. By far of greatest importance is the isotope 239Pu, which has a half-life of more than 20000 years. One kilogram is equivalent to about 22 million kilowatt hours of heat energy. The complete detonation of a kilogram of plutonium produces an explosion equal to about 20000 tons of chemical explosive. The various nuclear applications of plutonium are well known. The isotope 233Pu was used in the American Apollo lunar missions to power seismic and other equipment on the lunar surface. Plutonium contamination is an emotive environmental problem.

It has been suggested that if one pound of plutonium were uniformly distributed so that a few specks would lodge in the lungs of each person on Earth, everyone on the planet would get a fatal case of lung cancer. However, the path that plutonium takes from the point it is released into the environment to the human lung is so inefficient that, following the same argument, 100,000,000 pounds of the substance would have to be evenly spread throughout theenvironment to result in one pound of material penetrating the lungs of all the people on Earth.
Betwecn 1945 and 1976, about 26,000 curies (5 pounds of human-made 238Pu) were released into the atmosphere: 9820 curies from the atmospheric testing of plutonium bombs, and 17,000 curies from the satellite that burned up as it reentered the atmosphere in 1964. Of the total, based on samplings throughout the world, only 0.00055 pounds has been inhaled or ingested by all human beings.
The reason for this low level of dispersal lies in how plutonium moves through the environment Plutonium in
the atmosphere eventually makes its way onto the ground or into the water. Because 238Pu dioxide is so insoluble, its movement through the environment depends on physical, not chemical, processes. As it falls onto the soil, it eventually weathers into the ground at a depth of a few centimeters. Any 238Pu dioxide that settles on the ground remains there for hundreds of years. At this point, some of it may be slowly taken up by the roots of crops. (It is this slow movement into soil and crops that prompted the World Health Organization to determine that the ratio of 238Pu taken in by inhalation versus ingestion was 1000 to 3.)
In the water, studies at Bikini and Enewetak Atolls, sites of testing of atomic bombs, in which plutonium was
accidentally released, show that when plutonium is released from' an accident occurring near the shore it rapidly drops to the seabed. Here it moves again as a result of physical processes: further down into the sea bed, to the shore from wave action, or into the water column by sediment resuspension, where it can be ingested by marine life. It has also been shown that pellets of 238Pu dioxide on the sea floor rapidly become encrusted with mineral deposits and release less radioactive material with the passage of time.
Of more importance in how plutonium moves through the environment is that, once it falls on land, it can be
resuspended into the air whenever the ground is disturbed by wind or human activities such as tilling or construction.

This means it is available to be inhaled by humans, which is the most harmful path. Most of the studies on
resuspension were conducted in arid environments, leading to question wbether resuspension of small particles would
be less in more humid or wet areas. There is no solid evidence to support this idea, since measurements taken
throughout the United States actually showed that the lowest concentration of particles per cubic meter of air were in White Pine County, Nevada -- a very arid area -- and that the highest were in the more humid Midwest, where soil erosion and tilling produce major resuspension. Other experiments in South Carolina, Enewetak, and Bikini also show that resuspension of soil was essentially the same as in arid environments. More research is needed to completely answer this question.

It has been reported, incorrectly, that 238Pu is the most toxic substance in the universe; however, chemical toxins such as certain snake venoms, botulism, anthrax spores, and mercury vapors (such as in high intensity lamps), are more toxic, as are the polonium and californium isotopes 21Opo, 242cf, and 244Cf. Plutonium decays by the emission of alpha particles, packages each consisting of two neutrons and two protons, with energy propelling each through matter. As the alpha particle moves, it tears away electrons from surrounding atoms_ Each electron pulled away moves through the molecules around it until it interacts with another atom. On a molecular scale, this is like a microscopic hot poker passing through cells. If an alpha particle plunges through a tissue cell's nucleus, the cell will be killed. But if the alpha particle plows through the cytoplasm that surrounds each cell nucleus, the cell can repair itself. At the same time, the alpha particle can plow through that part of the cytoplasm near the cell nucleus and disrupt DNA molecules in the nucleus. This sets off the mysterious reaction that alters the cell's ability to replicate itself in a slow, orderly manner, resulting in the runaway reaction characteristic of cancer. Each disintegration of an alpha particle from plutonium has about five million electron volts of energy, which mcans it can smash through about five or six cells. Hence, 238Pu only causes damage when it is close to living cells. It is the sum of the alpha particles and their activity within a volume of tissue that constitutes the alpha radiation dose. More accurately, dose is the amount of energy deposited in the tissue. Doses are measured in "radiation-absorbed dose" or "rad". Or they are measured in rem -- rad (or Roentgen) ~uivalent in man. Newer tenninology substitutes Gray (Gy) or Sievert (Sv), which are 100 times rad or rem. Ingestion of 238Pu is not particularly hazardous because its insoluble fonn does not make its way across the wall of the intestine very easily, and almost all leaves the body in the feces. The little that does penetrate ends up in the liver and skeleton. Skin contact with 238pu is also not a significant health concern. In fact, if 238Pu is deposited on the skin, the alpha particles cannot penetrate the nonnal layer of dead skin cells, and the radioisotope can be washed off without hanD. However, if plutonium is inhaled, some will stay in the lungs and some will dissolve in body fluids to be absorbed by the blood and deposited in the liver and skeleton. (plutonium does not readily move into the reproductive tissues and therefore does not affect offspring.) In these organs, alpha particles willl:ill or alter cells. At low doses of radiation, however, it is not the killing of cells that worries scientists; dead cells do not alter living cells. Scientists are concerned about cancer, the runaway division of cells that eventually fonns tumors, caused when alpha particles alter the self-replication function of the cell. This happens in a way that scientists do not yet understand. Radiation is all around us and in us. Humans receive radiation from cosmic rays that come from outer space, from the natural radioactivity that is in us all, and from radiation in the Earth. The natural radioactivity in US comes from
the natural decay of uranium that is everywhere in the world; its decay products include radon and other isotopes that emit the same kind of alpha particles that come from 238pu. In fact, we each get an annual alpha particle dose (almost the same particle energy as from plutonium) of about 0.2 rem, about half of our annual natural background radiation dose. In addition, one out of every 2000 atoms of potassium, a critical part of human makeup, is naturally radioactive. From all this background radiation, each human being receives, and apparently has adjusted to, about one-third of a rem each year. More radiation, however, can lead to cancer. The way in which radiation causes cancer isn't well understood. We do know that ripping electrons from atoms can disrupt DNA molecules that make up the chromosomes of the cell nucleus. If the cell isn't killed or doesn't repair itself, it may mutate and set off an uncontrolled replication. But these mutations must be going on all the time from background radiation, from chemicals in the environment or from simple metabolic accidents, and they are almost all recognized by the body's defense system, which destroys them. Because this repair mechanism exists, when radiation doses are absorbed slowly, the cells and tissues can keep
up with the repair. Thus, very low dose-rate radiation is generally less carcinogenic than the same dose delivered at a higher rate. Rarely, in these billions of cell divisions that occur within a human body over a lifetime, does a mutated cell escape detection and destruction to continue to divide and cause cancer. But it does happen, as a result of a number of causes -- perhaps sometimes acting alone or sometimes together -- that include smoking, genetics, too much sun, mysterious accidents along molecular pathways, diet, and exposure to toxins or radioactivity. To determine the probability that a dose of radiation will cause cancer, we can say that if each of a million persons received one rem of radiation dose, that there would be a probability or expectation that up to about 300 to 400 additional cancer fatalities might be seen in the life history of those one million people. These figures have been arrived at as a result of years of study on survivors of the atomic bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki during World War II, on people who have had excessive doses of medical radiation when radioactive dyes were commonly used to study the function of organs, and on uranium miners and on women who used to paint radium dials on wa!Ches. They all received tens, hundreds, and even thousands of rems of radiation, and without certainty we assume that their high-dose risks can be
scaled down to estimate low-dose risks. That step introduces uncertainty because there is no way to directly test the risks of a I-rem dose to a population. The risks may actually be grossly overstated using this approach, but that is how it is done. Remember: these hypothetical 300 to 400 additional 'probabilistic' deaths might be added to the more than 200,000 fatal cancers nonnal in a popUlation of a million people because we know 20% of the population dies from cancer without the additional radiation insult but we don't know which 300 to 400 people of the one million might develop the cancer because of the additional radiation dose -- it's just how scientists describe cancer risks. These are probabilities or expectations, and not certainties! On an individual basis, we could say that each person's lifetime share of the potential risk would be 300 divided by one million, or a three-in-ten thousand probability -- 0.03% of cancer risk per rem.

If you are uncomfortable about probabilities, rather than certainties, you are in good company. Some scientists
don't like it either, but we're stuck with it. With individual events, such as a cue ball hitting an eight ball on a pool table, scientists can describe and predict the ou!Come perfectly. There's no doubt what will happen, given the respective direction, masses, and velocities of the two balls. But as soon as the event under scrutiny becomes more complicated, say, using the analogy of the flip of a coin, certainty must give way to probability. Because initial forces on the aforesaid coin may vary ever so slightly and because the coin can be hit by ever so many different air molecules in its flight, we cannot predict its resultant landing. The wonderful news, however, is that we can predict with almost certainty, the result of many coin flips. They will come out 50% heads and 50% tails. Of course, the emphasis is on the key word "many: Which flip comes out heads or tails we don't know, but the ou!Come of many flips is certain. At this point, the concept of "person-rem" needs to be explained. Scientists have developed a method to help estimate the total potential impact of what happens to a large popUlation when it receives, for example, a dose of radiation from a cloud plume or is exposed to chemical carcinogens in water. Use of this method is based on the assumption that radiation risk to populations or to individuals is proportional to radiation dose. Here's how it works: if each of one million people receive 1 rem of dose, the collective risk in that population would be expressed by an increase of about 300 to 400 additional cancerS. Note that I rem times 1 million people is 1 million person-rem, and that is the same number when 10 is multiplied by 100,000, or 1,000,000 person-rem. If one mega-person-rem (that is, 1,000,000 person-rem) causes an added risk potential of,let's say, up to 400 extra cancers,
then it is also reasonable to say that I rem incurs a risk expectation of 400 divided by 1 million, or four
ten-thousandths -- 0.04% -- of added risk. This also says that the risk to a population can be estimated by knowing the total collective person-rem in the population, and that this is independent of the size of the population. For widespread radiation risk evaluation, especially when dealing with mega-popUlations and micro-doses, this kind of calculation helps put the potential risk into perspective. As an extreme example of this risk evaluation, imagine that the entire world's population wore shoes that were one inch thicker in height -- that everyone stood an extra inch taller for just one year. We know that some of our annual background radiation comes from cosmic rays -- about 0.026 rem per year at sea level. Also, we know that as the shielding of the atmosphere lessens with increasing altitude, that the dose rate doubles for every 2000 meters
in altitude, and therefore that the collective cosmic ray dose for the world's population would increase by about 1500 person-rem per inch annually. Using the lifetime cancer risk estimator of up to 400 hypothetical cancers per million person-rem, an extra 30 fatal cancers from radiation could occur if everyone on Earth stood an inch higher for just one year! Of course, this same popolation would normally be expected to experience a total of some one billion fatal cancers from all sources, and 30 divided by one billion is an increment in fatal cancer risk probability of less than one in 10 million. In the risk analyses for release of plutonium, these are the same sizes and magnitudes of the risk probabilities that are calculated. They can be calculated, but they are insignificant. So it is, apparently, with all living organisms. Made up of billions and billions of molecules with all their possible normal and abnormal interactions -- which we do not understand in general, nor which we can compate in any way specifically to, for example, the interactions of billiard balls -- we have no choice but to describe the results in terms of probabilities. However unsatisfying that might be, only probabilities are predictive.

Anyway I hope this helps.  We have a supply of boric acid on hand to wash things that could become contaminated by rain mostly and we have beed feeding adn estting kelp for a long time.  It has been shown that daily intact of kelp can produce a huge health benifit and maybe even proctect agaist some of the harm from radiation.  Doesing for health is a teaspoon full aday for humans ans small to human sized animals, does should be doubled in cows and horses, alnog with other big animals.  It has no side effects to my knowledge.  We add ours to our food, I am sure one could encaplseate if one wanted too.

Have to go out now and work on a horse and pick up the last of the kelp in the area.

Be Blessed Dear ones and know that knowledge is a powerful tool and were it lives no fear can dwell...

Shekhinah, Michael and all the kids and critters on Mahanaim Farm...

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