chernobyl tragedy- ukraine/07
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"...Elderly people are moving back into the empty houses because they say they will die soon anyway..." (words from our guide)

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For those who think their lives are safe and their own country not affected by "cheap" nuclear power, here is an excellent article by Professor J. Sternglass: www.ratical.org/radiation/inetSeries/ejs1192.html

Here is a brief summary of what happened at Chernovyl:
On April 26, 1986, the fourth reactor of the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant, exploded at 01:23 AM local time. The workers were performing an experiment with the reactor's safety systems. Problems occurred during the tests, the reactor did not receive enough coolant, had built up too much heat in the core and had fully withdrawn control rods, all of which contributed to a very unstable and unpredictable reactor operation. When the control rods were reinserted in an attempt to regain control of the unstable reactor, there was a sudden increase in reactivity, caused by the design of the RBMK reactor and its control rods, and an uncontrollable runaway reaction occurred. The reactor produced tremendous amounts of steam, eventually causing a steam break/explosion, which destroyed part of the reactor. After the explosion, graphite fires broke out, due to the high temperatures of the reactor and the graphite's exposure to oxygen. Radioactive debris was flung several miles, and smoke containing radioactive contaminants from the burning graphite traveled as far as Belarus.
All residents were evacuated.
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Chernobyl death toll grossly underestimated
18 April 2006

Chernobyl, Ukraine — A new report has revealed that the full consequences of the Chernobyl disaster could top a quarter of a million cancer cases and nearly 100,000 fatal cancers.
Our report involved 52 respected scientists and includes information never before published in English. It challenges the UN International Atomic Energy Agency Chernobyl Forum report, which predicted 4,000 additional deaths attributable to the accident as a gross simplification of the real breadth of human suffering.

The new data, based on Belarus national cancer statistics, predicts approximately 270,000 cancers and 93,000 fatal cancer cases caused by Chernobyl. The report also concludes that on the basis of demographic data, during the last 15 years, 60,000 people have additionally died in Russia because of the Chernobyl accident, and estimates of the total death toll for the Ukraine and Belarus could reach another 140,000.

The report also looks into the ongoing health impacts of Chernobyl and concludes that radiation from the disaster has had a devastating effect on survivors; damaging immune and endocrine systems, leading to accelerated ageing, cardiovascular and blood illnesses, psychological illnesses, chromosomal aberrations and an increase in foetal deformations.
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For those interested, here is another excellent in-depth article:
faculty.oxy.edu/richmond/ENVR/chornobyl_nuclear_catastrop...
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