The difficulty of finding accurate, current information about the science and the level of risk involved has exacerbated confusion and worry among some in the public.
Saying that Californians are concerned and seeking information about potential health risks caused by contaminated water coming to the state from the Fukushima nuclear power plant disaster, Assemblymember Bob Wieckowski (D-Fremont) is urging the state’s Department of Public Health to post updated information on the issue to its homepage.
“With newspaper reports, on-line videos and a number of stories about the possible radiation dangers to our beaches, residents are concerned and seeking information from a source they can trust,” Wieckowski said. “I think a lot of people’s questions can be answered if the department would conduct a study or post the results of other studies and monitoring that are already completed to its homepage. The difficulty of finding accurate, current information about the science and the level of risk involved has exacerbated confusion and worry among some in the public.”
Wieckowski said the federal government has suggested Fukushima’s problems pose no risks to California’s coastal and estuarine lands. However, online speculation about contaminated water traveling to California, and higher than normal radioactivity levels on a California beach have increased the public’s concerns.
“Tourism, fishing, agriculture and outdoor recreation are among our most important assets,” Wieckowski said. “Millions of Californians live in communities that are directly impacted by contamination in the ocean. That’s why I think it’s important for the state Department of Public Health to put what information it has in layman’s terms onto its homepage so the public can see it and understand what, if any, risks or concerns are out there.”
The following statement was issued Friday, Jan. 10, 2014, by the California Department of Public Health Radiologic Health Branch and their Office of Public Affairs: