Errors in current official radiation risk model impacted releases from Uranium processing plants like the Portsmouth Gaseous Diffusion Plant

Updated 2 years ago Edited by Tony Rutherford from Multiple Reports
Errors in current official radiation risk model impacted releases from Uranium processing plants like the Portsmouth Gaseous Diffusion Plant

 Dr. Christopher Busby, a radiation expert from England with extensive experience working with depleated uranium from Iraq to Kosovo , spoke at Piketon's Endeavor Center concerning health issues from radiation. For instance,  The spent fuel often stored in co-called non-corosive barrels increases in contamination which eventually allows U235 and U238 to burn its way out of storage drums. 

Busby has documented incidents where stored depleaded uranium increased in radioactivity 450%. The element's half life is millions of years. Under his projections, a limited nuclear exchange will eliminate the world's population --- Exposure harms DNA and prevents births.

Dr Busby's  public presentation of his assessment concluded  there were reasonable grounds to believe that historic and current releases of radioactive material from the Portsmouth Gaseous Diffusion Plant (PGDP) to the air and water, principally Uranium particles, caused increased rates of cancer, leukemia and genetic effects in local populations.

The visit was associated with an impending legal case against the various operators of the plant.

He explained that he had studied the health effects of internal radioactive exposures, which follow ingestion and inhalation for more than 30 years. His research had led him to conclude the current radiation risk models used by the US government regulators to assess the health effects of such exposures were unsafe and did not begin to accurately reflect the true yield of cancers and genetic effects. The issue was brought to his attention by the media reports of the childhood cancer cluster at Zahn Middle School.


After investigating the nature of the plant releases, he stated that there is little doubt that releases from the plant have increased contamination nearby of Uranium-238, Uranium 235 and other alpha emitting particulates. He stated that there was a significant cluster of cancer in children at the Zahn’s Corner Middle School. He carried out a statistical analysis of the ages and numbers of children with cancer 1990-2019 and established that it is an excess risk of between 10 and 20-fold compared with the expected number based on national data.


Child cancer is very rare, he said, about 15 per 100,000 children aged 10-19, and since the population of the school is about 380, the probability of this occurring by chance was less than one in 10,000.


He pointed out that the discovery of a similar child cancer cluster near the UK nuclear reprocessing plant at Sellafield in 1983 resulted in a full government enquiry. The problem, he said, was Uranium, which gets into the body by inhalation of airborne particles and then binds chemically to DNA, causing mutations of the genetic material.


This increases the rates of nearly every kind of illness including neurological effects in children, something which was found after Chernobyl in contaminated populations.


He was informed by many that there seemed to be a very large number of cancers in those living near the plant, but he pointed out that cancer data which would enable an epidemiological examination of local cancer rates down to ZIP code level, has not been made available by the Ohio Cancer Registry. He said that this can be addressed by legal means.


Nevertheless, he continued, the official data down to County level available from the Center for Disease Control show that the counties around Pike County have the highest cancer rates in the State.


His main message to the 300 people who attended his presentations (in 6 batches, owing to the size of the Endeavour Center venue) was that the radiation model which has been and still is used to assess risk, and in particular to dismiss the real concerns of locals, is inaccurate.


The risk model asserts that a particular level of so-called background radiation permits so called non-harmful exposures; due to faulty assumptions the standard shoud be lowered to more fully reflect health concerns.

 EDITOR'S NOTE: Some of his published papers can be found here: