Radiation levels in the Marshall Islands, where the US government tested its nuclear arsenal during the Cold War, are even higher than those found in Fukushima and Chernobyl, according to a newly released peer-reviewed study. On one of the islands, the concentrations of radioactive particles were found to be higher by a magnitude of 1, One particularly disturbing find was the presence of plutonium on Naen, an island in the Rongelap Atoll, some miles away from the test sites on Bikini, Enjebi and Runit. That isotope is not a product of fallout, but is generally associated with nuclear waste, raising the possibility that Naen was used as a dumping ground. Another study also tested fruit from several of the islands and found that contamination levels were above safety levels established in countries affected by nuclear fallout — including Russia, Ukraine, Belarus and Japan. The US government performed 67 nuclear tests in the South Pacific islands between and , during its early arms race with the Soviet Union.
Bikini Atoll: US History for Kids ***
The former island paradise of Bikini Atoll is slowing blooming back to life, 70 years after the United States dropped 23 nuclear bombs on it, including a device in that was 1,times larger than the Hiroshima atom bomb. A team of scientists from Stanford University have been surprised to discover an abundance of marine life apparently thriving in the crater of Bikini Atoll, which was declared a nuclear wasteland after the bombings, with its inhabitants relocated to other islands. Animals studied by scientists in and around the Chernobyl blast showed deformities and mutations, but the Stanford teams initial research suggest the marine life in Bikini may have fared significantly better. Palumbi said to the naked eye the crabs, fish and coral of Bikini Atoll look perfectly normal and healthy, and some of the coral has been around for decades — with evidence it may have begun growing as soon as 10 years after the last bombs were dropped. In a strange way they are protected by the history of this place, the fish populations are better than in some other places because they have been left alone, the sharks are more abundant and the coral are big.
'Quite odd': coral and fish thrive on Bikini Atoll 70 years after nuclear tests
Seventy years have passed since those promises, and the chain of islands remain deserted. Although residents are desperate to return, it appears the time has not yet come for the long-anticipated homecoming. A study published this week said the remote atoll may still be too radioactive for inhabitation. Researchers who traveled to Bikini last year discovered radiation levels higher than those allowed by minimum safety standards. However, neighboring atolls were significantly less nuclear -- a positive sign after decades of upheaval for the region's former residents.
Sample section taken from the book, For the Good of Mankind. By Jack Niedenthal Email: bikinijack gmail. Bikini Atoll has been included on the list for the role that tests of atomic weapons at Bikini played in shaping global culture in the second half of the 20th Century. Order from this direct ordering link at Amazon. For the Good of Mankind is also available for purchase and download as an Amazon Kindle edition.