• 1 day Shell Oil Trading Head Steps Down After 29 Years
  • 2 days Higher Oil Prices Reduce North American Oil Bankruptcies
  • 2 days Statoil To Boost Exploration Drilling Offshore Norway In 2018
  • 2 days $1.6 Billion Canadian-US Hydropower Project Approved
  • 2 days Venezuela Officially In Default
  • 2 days Iran Prepares To Export LNG To Boost Trade Relations
  • 2 days Keystone Pipeline Leaks 5,000 Barrels Into Farmland
  • 2 days Saudi Oil Minister: Markets Will Not Rebalance By March
  • 2 days Obscure Dutch Firm Wins Venezuelan Oil Block As Debt Tensions Mount
  • 3 days Rosneft Announces Completion Of World’s Longest Well
  • 3 days Ecuador Won’t Ask Exemption From OPEC Oil Production Cuts
  • 3 days Norway’s $1 Trillion Wealth Fund Proposes To Ditch Oil Stocks
  • 3 days Ecuador Seeks To Clear Schlumberger Debt By End-November
  • 3 days Santos Admits It Rejected $7.2B Takeover Bid
  • 3 days U.S. Senate Panel Votes To Open Alaskan Refuge To Drilling
  • 3 days Africa’s Richest Woman Fired From Sonangol
  • 4 days Oil And Gas M&A Deal Appetite Highest Since 2013
  • 4 days Russian Hackers Target British Energy Industry
  • 4 days Venezuela Signs $3.15B Debt Restructuring Deal With Russia
  • 4 days DOJ: Protestors Interfering With Pipeline Construction Will Be Prosecuted
  • 4 days Lower Oil Prices Benefit European Refiners
  • 4 days World’s Biggest Private Equity Firm Raises $1 Billion To Invest In Oil
  • 5 days Oil Prices Tank After API Reports Strong Build In Crude Inventories
  • 5 days Iraq Oil Revenue Not Enough For Sustainable Development
  • 5 days Sudan In Talks With Foreign Oil Firms To Boost Crude Production
  • 5 days Shell: Four Oil Platforms Shut In Gulf Of Mexico After Fire
  • 5 days OPEC To Recruit New Members To Fight Market Imbalance
  • 5 days Green Groups Want Norway’s Arctic Oil Drilling Licenses Canceled
  • 5 days Venezuelan Oil Output Drops To Lowest In 28 Years
  • 5 days Shale Production Rises By 80,000 BPD In Latest EIA Forecasts
  • 6 days GE Considers Selling Baker Hughes Assets
  • 6 days Eni To Address Barents Sea Regulatory Breaches By Dec 11
  • 6 days Saudi Aramco To Invest $300 Billion In Upstream Projects
  • 6 days Aramco To List Shares In Hong Kong ‘For Sure’
  • 6 days BP CEO Sees Venezuela As Oil’s Wildcard
  • 6 days Iran Denies Involvement In Bahrain Oil Pipeline Blast
  • 8 days The Oil Rig Drilling 10 Miles Under The Sea
  • 9 days Baghdad Agrees To Ship Kirkuk Oil To Iran
  • 9 days Another Group Joins Niger Delta Avengers’ Ceasefire Boycott
  • 9 days Italy Looks To Phase Out Coal-Fired Electricity By 2025
China Resumes Oil Hoarding Despite Higher Prices

China Resumes Oil Hoarding Despite Higher Prices

Satellite imaging data suggests that…

Are Autonomous Cars Ready To Ditch The Backup Driver?

Are Autonomous Cars Ready To Ditch The Backup Driver?

Self-driving cars are being tested…

First Studies Of Fukushima Accident Show Serious Effects On Wildlife

First Studies Of Fukushima Accident Show Serious Effects On Wildlife

Beginning just a few months after the meltdown of Japan’s Fukushima Daiichi power plant in March 2011, scientists began studying the biological effects of the radiation on local wildlife, and the first reports are not encouraging.

The Journal of Heredity has published several articles summarizing these studies, which found broad negative impact -- including genetic damage, population declines and disruptions of the mechanisms that help organisms repair exposure to radioactive material.

The victims range from birds to butterflies and even plants.

“A growing body of empirical results from studies of birds, monkeys, butterflies and other insects suggests that some species have been significantly impacted by the radioactive releases related to the Fukushima disaster,” the lead author of one such study, Dr. Timothy Mousseau of the University of South Carolina, said in a statement issued by the American Genetic Association (AGA).

The AGA says these first reports provide “baseline for future research” on similar disasters involving ionizing radiation, and have at least one important element in common: the hypothesis that chronic, low-dose exposure to radioactive material leads to genetic damage in plants and animals and increased mutations in both reproductive and non-reproductive cells.

One study published in the journal studied radiation’s effects on Japan’s most common butterfly, the pale grass-blue butterfly. Specimens culled from the Fukushima area, as well as their offspring raised in laboratories, showed stunted size and growth, high mortality and genetic disfigurement.

Similar effects were found in larvae that had not been directly contaminated but had fed on vegetation from contaminated plants, according to Joji Otaki of the University of the Ryukyus in Okinawa, who was involved in AGA study.

Another study that looked at a variety of other species in the Fukushima area reported serious drops in the population of birds, butterflies and cicadas, all due to exposure to radioactive material. It said longer-term studies at Chernobyl, Ukraine, the site of a severe nuclear accident in 1986, could help forecast the long-term effects on animal and plant life affected by the Fukushima meltdown.

In fact, there were many delays in gathering of biological samples affected by the Chernobyl accident, which severely diminished the information that could have been gathered about the impact of that disaster. This lesson was not lost on the researchers studying the Fukushima accident, the AGA said.

Mousseau said the delays at Chernobyl underscore the need for early and continuous monitoring of any site of an accidental release of radioactive material.

“Detailed analyses of genetic impacts to natural populations could provide the information needed to predict recovery times for wild communities,” Mousseau said. “There is an urgent need for greater investment in basic scientific research of the wild animals and plants of Fukushima.”

By Andy Tully of Oilprice.com



Join the discussion | Back to homepage

Leave a comment
  • Barry on August 19 2014 said:
    The DNA mutations will without question work its way up the food chain into us humans to be affected by sickness and mutations! TEPCO which is supported by the Japanese Government is still pumping millions and millions of gallons of radioactive waste into the Pacific Ocean each and every day to radiate the fish and sea life that live in it! I recommend that anyone eating fish and seafood from the Pacific Ocean do a radiation and heavy metal detox! The natural mineral called Zeolite has been proven to safely remove both radiation and heavy metals from the human body! For more information on this do a search for the single word Zeolite.

Leave a comment

Oilprice - The No. 1 Source for Oil & Energy News