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Japanese Nuclear Disaster – What Will Be The Results Of A Meltdown
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With the nuclear plant disaster in Japan being on everyone’s mind lately one of the questions being asked is, what are the effects of a nuclear meltdown? To understand the effects one must know exactly what a “nuclear meltdown” is.

Simply put, the reactor melts. The temperature rises in the reactor core, most likely due to insufficient coolant being available to cool down the radioactive fuel rods. Once the temperature reaches a high enough level it turns the fuel rods into a super hot liquid that melts the containment vessel the rods are stored in. Once that happens the liquid is free to escape into the earth below. Once the molten uranium reaches the groundwater beneath, it turns to steam and starts to spew into the atmosphere.

Nuclear meltdowns and other nuclear accidents have a huge impact on the environment and the health of people that come in contact with the radioactivity. Of all the disasters caused by humans nuclear accidents have the most damage potential and can be the most costly in huiman terms and financial terms.

The radiation released by the nuclear meltdown poses considerable risks to the immediate environment as well as risks to people downwind from the fallout. Even lasting for hundreds of years and spreading for hundreds of miles.

The health effects to people are dependent upon the length of exposure and the proximity to the radiation. The closer you are to the source and the longer you are exposed, the worse the outcome will be.

Cancer is one form that exposure to radiation has on people. If the bone marrow is exposed to the radiation it will kill off the immune system that bone marrow gives to humans to fight off infections. Once that immune system is damaged you could die from all sorts of sicknesses and diseases that your system would normally have no problem fending off.

After a nuclear meltdown occurs the area of the accident could literally be uninhabitable for hundreds of years. The water in the ground would be affected, and plant life or animal life in the area would be rendered inedible for the same amount of time.

Many sources have been quoted recently saying there is going to be no effect to the continental United States, but what about the countries and people closer to the disaster if a complete meltdown does in fact occur. Let’s hope that this situation gets better and the authorities working on containing this accident are successful.


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Thom  

Nice and informative article mate. Thank you. :)

Reply
  about 9 years ago
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