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Industrial and Medical Nuclear Accidents: Environmental, Ecological, Health and Socio-economic Consequences

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Industrial and Medical Nuclear Accidents: Environmental, Ecological, Health and Socio-economic Consequences

Jean-Claude Amiard

ISBN: 978-1-119-62951-1 June 2019 Wiley-ISTE 334 Pages

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Description

The peaceful use of atomic energy has given rise to a variety of nuclear accidents from the start. This concerns all forms of use, industrial and medical.

For each accident, Industrial and Medical Nuclear Accidents details the contamination of the environment, flora and fauna, and quantifies the effects of ionizing radiation. The book also examines the adverse effects on the health, both physical and mental, of the human populations concerned. The monetary cost is also evaluated.

The research presented in this book is based on scientifically recognized publications and on the reports of national and international organizations competent in this field (IAEA, WHO, UNSCEAR, IRSN, etc.). The book contains chapters devoted to the most recent accidents (Chernobyl and Fukushima), with a large body of institutional and academic literature.

Preface xi

Acknowledgments xv

List of Acronyms. xvii

Chapter 1. Classification of Civil, Industrial and Medical Nuclear Accidents 1

1.1. Nuclear accident or radiological accident? 2

1.2. Classification of nuclear accidents. Incident or accident? 3

1.2.1. Application of the INES in France 5

1.2.2. Application of the INES at the international level 6

1.2.3. Other classifications of nuclear accidents 6

1.2.4. The NAMS classification 6

1.3. Classification of radiological accidents 7

1.4. The typology of accidents 9

1.4.1. Criticality accidents 10

1.4.2. Accidents in nuclear power reactors 11

1.4.3. Losses of radioactive sources 11

1.4.4. Radiotherapy accidents 12

1.4.5. Terrorist attacks 12

1.5. What are the main nuclear accidents? 12

1.6. Information on nuclear energy. 17

Chapter 2. Accidents Related to Nuclear Power Production 19

2.1. Introduction 19

2.2. Accidents in the nuclear fuel cycle 19

2.2.1. Uranium mines 20

2.2.2. Milling, conversion, enrichment and fuel manufacturing plants 22

2.2.3. Nuclear reactors 22

2.2.4. Spent fuel reprocessing plants 29

2.3. Accidents in laboratories 33

2.3.1. Chalk River laboratories 33

2.3.2. French study centers 34

2.4. Other accidents 35

2.4.1. Accidents in civil engineering 35

2.4.2. Accidents in nuclear propulsion 36

2.5. Waste management incidents 36

2.6. Incidents in the transport of radioactive packages 37

2.7. Environmental consequences 38

2.7.1. Uranium mines 38

2.7.2. Tokai-Mura 39

2.7.3. Saint-Laurent-des-Eaux 39

2.7.4. Three Mile Island 40

2.7.5. Church Rock 41

2.7.6. La Hague 41

2.7.7. Chalk River 41

2.7.8. Simi Valley 42

2.8. Health consequences 42

2.8.1. Uranium miners 42

2.8.2. Workers in the nuclear industry 44

2.8.3. Simi Valley 47

2.8.4. Tokai-Mura 48

2.8.5. Lucens 49

2.8.6. Three Mile Island 49

2.8.7. Church Rock 50

2.8.8. La Hague 50

2.8.9. Chalk River 51

2.8.10. Ruthenium 106 releases in Russia in September 2017 51

2.9. The cost of accidents 52

2.11. Conclusions 54

Chapter 3. The Extremely Serious Nuclear Accident at Chernobyl 57

3.1. Introduction 57

3.2. The facts 58

3.2.1. The Chernobyl site and the nuclear power plant 58

3.2.2. The accident 58

3.2.3. The core and the sarcophage 59

3.2.4. Atmospheric emissions 59

3.2.5. The dispersion of radionuclides 60

3.2.6. Radioactive fallout 61

3.2.7. Accident management 64

3.2.8. Countermeasures carried out at Chernobyl 67

3.3. Spatial and environmental consequences 68

3.3.1. Atmospheric contamination 68

3.3.2. Soil contamination 69

3.3.3. Surface water contamination 69

3.3.4. Groundwater contamination 70

3.3.5. Forest contamination 71

3.3.6. Contamination of the aquatic environment 74

3.3.7. Contamination of the marine environment 76

3.4. Ecological consequences of the Chernobyl accident 76

3.4.1. The three phases 76

3.4.2. Effects at molecular level 78

3.4.3. Genetic effects 80

3.4.4. Morphological and physiological effects on individuals 86

3.4.5. Effects on individual reproduction (sex, sex-ratio, fertility) 88

3.4.6. Effects on populations (age, abundance, longevity) 89

3.4.7. Effects on ecosystem structure and functioning 92

3.4.8. Partial conclusion 93

3.5. Health consequences 94

3.5.1. Implications for large organisms 94

3.5.2. The main contributions to exposure 97

3.5.3. Population exposure 97

3.5.4. Cancer pathologies 100

3.5.5. Non-cancerous pathologies 106

3.5.6. Mortalities resulting from the Chernobyl accident 112

3.6. Social consequences 115

3.6.1. Psychological disorders among liquidators 115

3.6.2. Psychological disorders in evacuated populations 116

3.7. Consequences in Europe and France 119

3.7.1. The impact of Chernobyl in Europe 119

3.7.2. The impact of Chernobyl in France 123

3.7.3. Cases of thyroid cancer in France 128

3.8. Economic consequences 130

3.9. Long-term management of the Chernobyl accident 131

3.10. Conclusion 132

Chapter 4. Fukushima’s Serious Nuclear Accidents 135

4.1. Introduction 135

4.2. The course of the Fukushima accidents 136

4.2.1. The facts 136

4.2.2. Atmospheric emissions 139

4.2.3. Marine discharges 140

4.3. Actions taken by the Japanese authorities 141

4.3.1. Evacuation of the populations 141

4.3.2. Distribution of iodine tablets to children 144

4.3.3. Exposure limits for nuclear workers and the public 144

4.3.4. Regulatory values and food monitoring 145

4.3.5. Decontamination tests of crop production 147

4.3.6. Decontamination and waste management 147

4.3.7. The restructuring of the Japanese nuclear industry 149

4.3.8. Compensation of victims 149

4.4. Environmental contamination 150

4.4.1. Contamination of the atmosphere 150

4.4.2. Contamination of the terrestrial environment 152

4.4.3. Forest contamination 155

4.4.4. Bird contamination 158

4.4.5. Contamination of freshwater environments 158

4.4.6. Contamination of the marine environment 159

4.4.7. Contamination of agricultural products and foodstuffs 165

4.5. Exposure and effects on flora and fauna 170

4.5.1. Exposure and effects on forests 171

4.5.2. Exposure and effects on birds 172

4.5.3. Exposure and effects on other terrestrial organisms 174

4.5.4. Exposure and effects on freshwater organisms 175

4.5.5. Exposure and effects on marine organisms 175

4.6. Health consequences 177

4.6.1. Consequences for the local human population 177

4.6.2. The consequences for nuclear workers 184

4.6.3. Consequences on the world population (excluding Japan) 187

4.7. Economic consequences 188

4.8. The situation in 2016 and 2017 189

4.8.1. The current situation of the Fukushima nuclear facilities 189

4.8.2. The time course of freshwater contamination 190

4.8.3. The first returns and return intentions of the evacuated populations following the accident at the Fukushima Daiichi power plant 192

4.9. Conclusions 192

Chapter 5. Industrial and Medical Radiology Accidents 195

5.1 Introduction 195

5.2. Industrial and medical applications 196

5.2.1. Non-destructive industrial testing 196

5.2.2. Industrial synthesis reactions and mechanical and chemical transformations 197

5.2.3. Environmental remediation and waste treatment by irradiation 198

5.2.4. Agri-food applications 199

5.2.5. Medical applications 200

5.3. Radiological criticality accidents 202

5.4. Radiological accidents related to the loss of radioactive sources 203

5.4.1. Loss of radioactive sources and public exposure 205

5.4.2. The main causes of loss of radioactive sources 211

5.4.3. Nuclear accidents related to the loss of radioactive sources 212

5.5. Radiological accidents with radioactive sources and industrial accelerators 215

5.6. Medical radiological accidents 219

5.6.1. Historical accidents involving the use of radiotherapy 219

5.6.2. Radiological accidents with medicinal radioactive sources 220

5.6.3. Brachytherapy and brachytherapy accidents 225

5.6.4. Interventional radiology by fluoroscopy 226

5.6.5. Secondary cancers 227

5.7. Conclusions 227

Conclusion 229

Glossary 239

References 249

Index 309