What are the real dangers of tritium?

What are the real dangers of tritium?

There are 812 comments on the Brattleboro Reformer story from Feb 23, 2010, titled What are the real dangers of tritium?. In it, Brattleboro Reformer reports that:

Since Entergy learned that a leak of tritiated water has been contaminating groundwater beneath the Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant in Vernon, many people have been wondering just how dangerous tritium is.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Brattleboro Reformer.

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Tritium Researcher

Little Rock, AR

#1 Feb 24, 2010
Picture a bureaucrat tasked with establishing safe levels of exposure to something, anything… tabasco sauce, sea salt, household bleach. The one absolutely safe level where the harried bureaucrat can rest assured, is to order zero exposure. Lacking data, but not wanting to prohibit everything… what is the next defensible fallback position? Answer: Compute something. A computation, even if wrong, legalistically protects a careerist from charges of being capricious or arbitrary, and if it turns out to be wrong, some mathematician bears the onus.
A computation, even if wrong.
California wrote ambitious health goals, including goals for tritium. The document can be found at: http://tinyurl.com/yg7d866
California found no epidemiological studies of tritium causing cancer in humans, AT ANY LEVEL, and stated it appears unlikely that tritium in the environment from present sources would produce detectable effects. Therefore, any carcinogenicity of tritium must be inferred.
100% of the evidence of the ill effects of radiation in humans comes from studies of individuals exposed to very high doses, mainly Hiroshima/Nagasaki bomb survivors.
Data on the risk from low levels of exposure, come only from inferred mathematical models., extrapolating from the WWII data. Scientists have never observed any health effect in human populations from radiation doses less than 10,000 mrem.--(EPA's 20,000 pCi/L level gives a 4 mrem yearly dose.)
This lack of observed effects could be because they occur too infrequently to be distinguished from normal occurrences, or it may be that there are no effects from these low levels because the body repairs itself (Hormesis). A 1990 National Institutes of Health study of populations living near nuclear facilities found no evidence that an excess occurrence of cancer had resulted from living near these facilities.
Read from a textbook which says exactly the same thing:
http://tinyurl.com/yzsdbyh
Tritium Researcher

Little Rock, AR

#2 Feb 24, 2010
Try to focus on the salient points:

The one absolutely safe level where any harried bureaucrat can rest assured, is to order zero exposure.

the next defensible fallback position is to Compute something. A computation, even if wrong, legalistically protects a careerist from charges of being arbitrary

California found no epidemiological studies of tritium causing cancer in humans, AT ANY LEVEL,

and stated it appears unlikely that tritium in the environment from present sources would produce detectable effects. Therefore, any carcinogenicity of tritium must be inferred.

Data on the risk from low levels of exposure, come only from inferred mathematical models., extrapolating from the WWII data.

Scientists have never observed any health effect in human populations from radiation doses less than 10,000 mrem.--(EPA's 20,000 pCi/L level gives a 4 mrem yearly dose.)

This lack of observed effects could be because they occur too infrequently to be distinguished from normal occurrences, or it may be that there are no effects from these low levels because the body repairs itself (Hormesis).

Read from a textbook which says exactly the same thing:
http://tinyurl.com/yzsdbyh
hmmmmmmmmmmmmmm

Westland, MI

#4 Feb 24, 2010
This is the funniest article I have ever read. Bob it usually works best when you find an impartial group to give information about health risks etc. I googled the nake of the group you had listed and low and behold it is an anti-nuke group. You could have called umass medical center, or another place like that instead you decide to use an self proclaimed anti-nuke group.
Vermontis

Arlington, VT

#5 Feb 24, 2010
It cant be that bad because they make battle rifle sights from it.
Frank Lee

Campbellsville, KY

#6 Feb 24, 2010
"I don't think it poses a risk any greater than two or three packs of cigarettes a day,"

I'm sorry, but that's just a stupid thing to say and it misses the point entirely.
Han Solo

Morenci, AZ

#7 Feb 24, 2010
"I don't think it poses a risk any greater than two or three packs of cigarettes a day," said Paul Blanch, who has worked in the nuclear industry for more than 40 years and opposes the relicensing of Vermont Yankee.

LOL!!! Three packs of smokes a day? And this is from someone that doesn't think its a big deal?
Michael Hunter

Austin, TX

#8 Feb 24, 2010
Good perspective on radiation risk:

Since: Feb 10

Danby, VT

#9 Feb 24, 2010
I think he meant two or three packs of cigarettes a day smoked for 40 years,
I HAVE THE INFORMATION

Little Rock, AR

#10 Feb 24, 2010
GUESSWHO

Little Rock, AR

#11 Feb 24, 2010
hmmmmmmmmmmmmmm

Westland, MI

#12 Feb 24, 2010
Han Solo wrote:
"I don't think it poses a risk any greater than two or three packs of cigarettes a day," said Paul Blanch, who has worked in the nuclear industry for more than 40 years and opposes the relicensing of Vermont Yankee.
LOL!!! Three packs of smokes a day? And this is from someone that doesn't think its a big deal?
No he does think it is a big deal. Blanch says he is pro nuke but anti VY....yet if you google his name and nuclear you will see he has been part of trying to shut down many many of the plants in this country for a long time. He appears to be anti-nuke that will not admit it.
Mike Mulligan

Roslindale, MA

#13 Feb 24, 2010
It the ideologically engineering and non humanistic point of view...in the scheme and scale of things all the safety systems, HPCI, RCIC,CS, LPCI and ADS....all our engineered nuclear core cooling system are basically inconsequence to the safety of the community and the nuclear industry. It is a unbelievably shallow and brittle safety margin...existence business model...

The only true safety system is the communication ability of all the VY employees...the ability of the employees to act in a cohesive and organized manner for the good of all.

The only, and it overwhelms the value of all the engineering safety systems...is the neurons in our brians. What kind of mental model do all the employees and people related to overseeing the nuclear power industry are booted up within their heads...our computer software in heads.
GUESSWHO

Little Rock, AR

#14 Feb 24, 2010
Mike, you have to lay off that medical cannabis.

Tritium, even were you to bathe in it, is harmless.

Malicious, intentionally hysterical exaggerators now have almost complete control of Vermont's thinking, and its only Vermonters who will pay dearly for this evil intent, no matter what the outcome.

Oh, and yeah... its the guys at VY keepin you all warm, & safe.

NOTE:
THERE WILL BE NO INTERRUPTION IN ELECTRICITY SERVICE DUE TO THE STORM.....
NH Radon Man

Concord, NH

#15 Feb 24, 2010
Having a background in the radon field I agree that the risk is very small but also agree that the physical integrety of the plant and the honesty of Entergy is a bigger issue.
NH Radon Man

Concord, NH

#16 Feb 24, 2010
Oh and test your home for radon in air and if you have a well test the water for radon.
Your Neighbor

Rochester, VT

#17 Feb 24, 2010
When I lived in Hinsdale, the town built on sand, the most pressing threat to homeowners were carpenter ants and other wood eating pests. We had to replace almost the entire sill of our house and our detached garage. Thinking we were the clever sort we put in a pressure treated sill. Years later all the playgrounds in the area started removing all pressure treated lumber due to ARSENIC.(For my parent's generation, it turned out to be the LEAD in paint and gasoline).
Now we had a solution to combating those Hinsdale ants in our home and garden, we used DIAZINON. It worked like a champ. Well then one day my friend who has a bachelors dagree in Dairy Science calls me up and told me that I had better get on down to Agway and stock up on Diazinon because they were taking the good stuff off the shelf.
Anyone else here remember the ALAR scare? The apple farmers up in South Hero cut down their Mac trees when Alar was pulled off the market. A couple of those farmers sold that cleared land to a house builder and so the orchard was permantly reduced because of the Alar scare. Well as it turns out Alar wasn't rally anything much to worry about.
I mean how is anyone really to know what is good and what is bad when the Federal Government madates FIRE RETARDANT to be used on our furniture?
So I do what I can, I use organic products in my home and on my lawn, all the while still knowing that RAYDON is the bigger threat in our area. I limmit my exposure to chemicals the best that I can and choose to not pull my hair out over the rest.
Does any of anything make any sense? I mean people worry night and day about Vermont Yankee and yet think very little of jumping in the car to grab a coffee and doughnut at DUNKIN DONUTS. Isn't that in fact creating the tripple whammy, CHOLESTEROL, CO2, and the risk of getting into an AUTO ACCIDENT?
GUESSWHO

Little Rock, AR

#18 Feb 24, 2010
Having experience in the "Keeping Life in Perspective" field, I re-emphasize that the risk is NON-EXISTENT, and only touted as "a potential risk" by those who would have you never breathe, never eat, never drink, and allow their "Feelgood Fascism" constrain your life to a nonentity, whilst they go suck on beer, wine,tobacco & pot cigarettes at the antinuke rally.

If you layed on the ground at VY,troweled out a little hole, and sucked groundwater into your mouth as hard as you could suck, and stayed there doing it for a year, you still would not get cancer.

You WOULD die from exposure, and nasty bacteria in groundwater.

Vermont WILL die, with no electricity.

I don't care, I don't live there.
GUESSWHO

Little Rock, AR

#19 Feb 24, 2010
I have a question.

When will the Vermont legislature order the confiscation of all the tritium watch dials, alarm clock dials, rifle sights, pistol sights, and hospital exit signs, which all contain high levels of PURE TRITIUM?

When will all the airport marker signal lights be dismantled, because THEY TOO have HIGH LEVELS OF PURE TRITIUM in them?

After all, tritium is tritium.
GUESSWHO

Little Rock, AR

#20 Feb 24, 2010
My rhetorical questions, are an attempt to make somebody, somewhere in Vermont say...."Hey.... am I being hustled here?"

(And I don't mean by Entergy..that's a separate issue).

LOOK OUT....A POTASSIUM-CONTAINING BANANA IS RIGHT THERE WHERE YOUR BABY CAN TOUCH IT !!!!

CALL OUT THE MILITIA !!!!

CALL UP A RALLY!
(Only not on a snow day).

Since: Apr 09

Location hidden

#21 Feb 24, 2010
It doesn't really matter what the dangers of Tritium actually are. It only matters what the public perceives them to be.

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