Spatiotemporal distribution and fluctuation of radiocesium in Tokyo Bay in the five years following the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant (FDNPP) accident.
ABSTRACT: A monitoring survey was conducted from August 2011 to July 2016 of the spatiotemporal distribution in the 400 km2 area of the northern part of Tokyo Bay and in rivers flowing into it of radiocesium released from the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant (FDNPP) accident. The average inventory in the river mouth (10 km2) was 131 kBq?m-2 and 0.73 kBq?m-2 in the central bay (330 km2) as the decay corrected value on March 16, 2011. Most of the radiocesium that flowed into Tokyo Bay originated in the northeastern section of the Tokyo metropolitan area, where the highest precipitation zone of 137Cs in soil was almost the same level as that in Fukushima City, then flowed into and was deposited in the Old-Edogawa River estuary, deep in Tokyo Bay. The highest precipitation of radiocesium measured in the high contaminated zone was 460 kBq?m-2. The inventory in sediment off the estuary of Old-Edogawa was 20.1 kBq?m-2 in August 2011 immediately after the accident, but it increased to 104 kBq?m-2 in July 2016. However, the radiocesium diffused minimally in sediments in the central area of Tokyo Bay in the five years following the FDNPP accident. The flux of radiocesium off the estuary decreased slightly immediately after the accident and conformed almost exactly to the values predicted based on its radioactive decay. Contrarily, the inventory of radiocesium in the sediment has increased. It was estimated that of the 8.33 TBq precipitated from the atmosphere in the catchment regions of the rivers Edogawa and Old-Edogawa, 1.31 TBq migrated through rivers and was deposited in the sediments of the Old-Edogawa estuary by July 2016. Currently, 0.25 TBq?yr-1 of radiocesium continues to flow into the deep parts of Tokyo Bay.
Project description:Radioactive contamination in the Tokyo metropolitan area in the immediate aftermath of the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant (FDNPP) accident was analyzed via surface soil sampled during a two-month period after the accident. 131I, 134Cs, and 137Cs were detected in these soil samples. The activity and inventory of radioactive material in the eastern part of Tokyo tended to be high. The 134Cs/137Cs activity ratio in soil was 0.978 ± 0.053. The 131I/137Cs ratio fluctuated widely, and was 19.7 ± 9.0 (weighted average 18.71 ± 0.13, n = 14) in the Tokyo metropolitan area. The radioactive plume with high 131I activity spread into the Tokyo metropolitan area and was higher than the weighted average of 6.07 ± 0.04 (n = 26) in other areas. The radiocesium activity and inventory surveyed in soil from a garden in Chiyoda Ward in the center of Tokyo, fell approximately 85% in the four months after the accident, and subsequently tended to rise slightly while fluctuating widely. It is possible that migration and redistribution of radiocesium occurred. The behavior of radiocesium in Tokyo was analyzed via monitoring of radiocesium in sludge incineration ash. The radiocesium activity in the incineration ash was high at wastewater treatment centers that had catchment areas in eastern Tokyo and low at those with catchment areas in western Tokyo. Similar to the case of the garden soil, even in incineration ash, the radiocesium activity dropped rapidly immediately after the accident. The radiocesium activity in the incineration ash fell steadily from the tenth month after the accident until December 2016, and its half-life was about 500 days. According to frequency analysis, in central Tokyo, the cycles of fluctuation of radiocesium activity in incineration ash and rainfall conformed, clearly showing that radiocesium deposited in urban areas was resuspended and transported by rainfall run-off.
Project description:Following the initial fall out from Fukushima Dai-ichi Nuclear Power Plant (FDNPP), a significant amount of radiocesium has been discharged from Abukuma River into the Pacific Ocean. This study attempted to numerically simulate the flux of radiocesium into Abukuma River by developing the multiple compartment model which incorporate the transport process of the radionuclide from the ground surface of the catchment area into the river, a process called wash off. The results from the model show that the sub-basins with a high percentage of forest area release the radionuclides at lower rate compared to the other sub-basins. In addition the results show that the model could predict the seasonal pattern of the observed data. Despite the overestimation observed between the modeled data and the observed data, the values of R(2) obtained from (137)Cs and (134)Cs of 0.98 and 0.97 respectively demonstrate the accuracy of the model. Prediction of the discharge from the basin area for 100 years after the accident shows that, the flux of radiocesium into the Pacific Ocean is still relatively high with an order of magnitude of 10(9) bq.month(-1) while the total accumulation of the discharge is 111 TBq for (137)Cs and 44 TBq for (134)Cs.
Project description:(135)Cs/(137)Cs is a potential tracer for radiocesium source identification. However, due to the challenge to measure (135)Cs, there were no (135)Cs data available for Japanese environmental samples before the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant (FDNPP) accident. It was only 3 years after the accident that limited (135)Cs values could be measured in heavily contaminated environmental samples. In the present study, activities of (134)Cs, (135)Cs, and (137)Cs, along with their ratios in 67 soil and plant samples heavily and lightly contaminated by the FDNPP accident were measured by combining ? spectrometry with ICP-MS/MS. The arithmetic means of the (134)Cs/(137)Cs activity ratio (1.033 ± 0.006) and (135)Cs/(137)Cs atom ratio (0.334 ± 0.005) (decay corrected to March 11, 2011), from old leaves of plants collected immediately after the FDNPP accident, were confirmed to represent the FDNPP derived radiocesium signature. Subsequently, for the first time, trace (135)Cs amounts before the FDNPP accident were deduced according to the contribution of global and FDNPP accident-derived fallout. Apart from two soil samples with a tiny global fallout contribution, contributions of global fallout radiocesium in other soil samples were observed to be 0.338%-52.6%. The obtained (135)Cs/(137)Cs database will be useful for its application as a geochemical tracer in the future.
Project description:The distribution of radiocesium was examined in bamboo shoots, Phyllostachys pubescens, collected from 10 sites located some 41 to 1140 km from the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, Japan, in the Spring of 2012, 1 year after the Fukushima nuclear accident. Maximum activity concentrations for radiocesium ¹³?Cs and ¹³?Cs in the edible bamboo shoot parts, 41 km away from the Fukushima Daiichi plant, were in excess of 15.3 and 21.8 kBq/kg (dry weight basis; 1.34 and 1.92 kBq/kg, fresh weight), respectively. In the radiocesium-contaminated samples, the radiocesium activities were higher in the inner tip parts, including the upper edible parts and the apical culm sheath, than in the hardened culm sheath and underground basal parts. The radiocesium/potassium ratios also tended to be higher in the inner tip parts. The radiocesium activities increased with bamboo shoot length in another bamboo species, Phyllostachys bambusoides, suggesting that radiocesium accumulated in the inner tip parts during growth of the shoots.
Project description:Large quantities of volatile radionuclides were released into the atmosphere and the hydrosphere following the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant (FDNPP) accident on March, 2011. Monitoring of radiocesium in sediment is important for evaluating the behavior of radiocesium in the environment and its effect on aquatic organisms. In this study, the radiocesium distribution in the surface sediment around the FDNPP was visualized as a radiocesium concentration map using periodical survey data from a towed gamma-ray detection system. The uncertainty of the radiocesium map was evaluated via comparison with a large amount of sediment core sample data. The characteristics of the radiocesium distribution were examined considering the seafloor topography and a geological map, which were obtained via acoustic wave survey. The characteristics of the formation of <sup>137</sup>Cs anomaly at the estuaries were analyzed using a contour map of <sup>137</sup>Cs concentration combined with water depth. Validation of the created map showed that it was comparable with actual sediment core samples. The map generated using the towed radiation survey depicted the <sup>137</sup>Cs concentration distribution as the position resolution of a 1 km mesh. Finally, the <sup>137</sup>Cs concentration decreased with time in consideration of such uncertainty.
Project description:On 11 March 2011, Japan experienced a massive earthquake and tsunami that triggered the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant (FDNPP) accident, resulting in the release of large amounts of cesium-134 and -137 into the atmosphere. In addition to the food radioactivity control in the markets throughout the country, radiocesium concentrations in locally grown foods were voluntarily inspected and the results were shown to the residents by the local government to raise their awareness of the internal radiation contamination risk from low knowledge in Nihonmatsu City, Fukushima Prefecture. In this longitudinal study, local food products for in-home consumption were evaluated by seven different food radioactivity measuring devices in Nihonmatsu City from 2011⁻2017. Radiocesium was detected in local foods in Nihonmatsu City even six years after the FDNPP accident. The highest number of products tested was in 2012, with the number steadily decreasing thereafter. Most foods had contamination levels that were within the provisional regulation limits. As edible wild plants and mushrooms continue to possess high radiocesium concentrations, new trends in radioactivity in foods like seeds were discovered. This study highlights that the increased risk of radiation exposure could possibly be due to declining radiation awareness among citizens and food distributors. We recommend the continuation of food monitoring procedures at various points in the food processing line under the responsibility of the government to raise awareness for the reduction of future risks of internal exposure.
Project description:As result of the great east Japan earthquake on March 2011 and the damages of the Fukushima Dai-ichi Nuclear Power Plant (FDNPP), huge amount of radionuclides, especially 137Cs, were released to the Japanese Pacific coast. By consequence, several marine species have been contaminated by direct uptake of radionuclides from seawater or through feeding on contaminated preys. In the present study we propose a novel radioecological modelling approach aiming to simulate the radionuclides transfer to pelagic marine species by giving to the organism body-size a key role in the model. We applied the model to estimate the 137Cs content in 14 commercially important species of the North-Western Pacific Ocean after the FDNPP accident. Firstly, we validated the model and evaluated its performance using various observed field data, and we demonstrated the importance of using such modelling approach in radioecological studies. Afterwards, we estimated some radioecological metrics, such as the maximum activity concentration, its corresponding time and the ecological half-life, which are important in assessment of the previous, current and future contamination levels of the studied species. Finally, we estimated the time duration required for each species to reach the pre-accident 137Cs activity concentrations. The results showed that the contamination levels in the planktivorous species have generally reached the pre-accident levels since about 5 years after the accident (since 2016). While in the case of the higher trophic level species, although the activity concentrations are much lower than the regulatory limit for radiocesium in seafood in Japan (100 Bq kg-1), these species still require another 6-14 years (2018-2026) to reach the pre-accident levels.
Project description:In the present study, <sup>129</sup>I activities and <sup>129</sup>I/<sup>127</sup>I atom ratios were measured in 60 soil samples contaminated by the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant (FDNPP) accident. The <sup>127</sup>I concentrations, <sup>129</sup>I activities, and <sup>129</sup>I/<sup>127</sup>I atom ratios in dry-weight were observed to be 0.121-23.6?mg?kg<sup>-1</sup>, 0.962-275?mBq?kg<sup>-1</sup>, and (0.215-79.3)?×?10<sup>-7</sup>, respectively. The maximum values of both <sup>129</sup>I activities and <sup>129</sup>I/<sup>127</sup>I atom ratios in Japanese soil increased about three orders of magnitude due to this accident. The equation logy?=?0.877logx?+?0.173 (Pearson's r?=?0.936; x, <sup>129</sup>I concentration; y, <sup>131</sup>I concentration; decay-corrected to March 11, 2011) instead of a simple constant may be a better way to express the relationship between <sup>129</sup>I and <sup>131</sup>I in Japanese soil affected by both global fallout and FDNPP accident fallout. In addition, a moderate correlation was observed between <sup>129</sup>I and <sup>135</sup>Cs (logy?=?0.624logx?+?1.01, Pearson's r?=?0.627; x, <sup>129</sup>I activity; y, <sup>135</sup>Cs activity). However, <sup>129</sup>I presented larger fractionations with less volatile radionuclides, such as <sup>236</sup>U, <sup>239</sup>Pu, and <sup>240</sup>Pu. These findings indicated <sup>135</sup>Cs could be roughly estimated from <sup>129</sup>I or <sup>131</sup>I; this is advantageous as fewer <sup>135</sup>Cs data are available and <sup>135</sup>Cs/<sup>137</sup>Cs is being considered a promising tracer during radiocesium source identification.
Project description:Car-borne surveys were carried out in metropolitan Tokyo, Japan, in 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018 to estimate the transition of absorbed dose rate in air from the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant accident. Additionally, the future transition of absorbed dose rates in air based on this five-year study and including previously reported measurements done in 2014 by the authors was analyzed because central Tokyo has large areas covered with asphalt and concrete. The average absorbed dose rate in air (range) in the whole area of Tokyo measured in 2018 was 59 ± 9 nGy h-1 (28-105 nGy h-1), and it was slightly decreased compared to the previously reported value measured in 2011 (61 nGy h-1; 30-200 nGy h-1). In the detailed dose rate distribution map, while areas of higher dose rates exceeding 70 nGy h-1 had been observed on the eastern and western ends of Tokyo after 2014, the dose rates in these areas have decreased yearly. Especially, the decreasing dose rate from radiocesium (Cs-134 + Cs-137) in the eastern end of Tokyo which is mainly covered by asphalt was higher than that measured in the western end which is mainly covered by forest. The percent reductions for the eastern end in the years 2014-2015, 2015-2016, 2016-2017 and 2017-2018 were 49%, 21%, 18% and 16%, and those percent reductions for western end were 26%, 18%, 6% and 3%, respectively. Additionally, the decrease for dose rate from radiocesium depended on the types of asphalt, and that on porous asphalt was larger than the decrease on standard asphalt.
Project description:We investigated the accumulation of radionuclides in frogs inhabiting radioactively contaminated areas around Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant (FDNPP) to search for possible adverse effects due to radionuclides. We collected 5 frog species and soil samples in areas within and outside a 20-km radius from FDNPP in August and September 2012 and determined their radiocesium concentrations ((134)Cs and (137)Cs). There was a positive correlation between radiocesium concentrations in the soil samples and frogs, and the highest concentration in frogs was 47,278.53 Bq/kg-wet. Although we conducted a histological examination of frog ovaries and testes by light microscopy to detect possible effects of radionuclides on the morphology of germ cells, there were no clear abnormalities in the gonadal tissues of frogs collected from sites with different contamination levels.