By:Paul Joseph Watson
Monday, March 14, 2011
Prevailing wind conditions would send fallout drifting towards west coast cities
Radioactive particles from the stricken Fukushima nuclear facility would take around a week to reach Alaska and eleven days to reach Los Angeles, according to an Accuweather.com analysis, which highlights the fact that prevailing winds over the region would send any potential fallout from the crisis-hit plant drifting towards west coast cities in the United States.
Given the fact that many analysts believe the Japanese government is grossly understating the amount of radioactive particles released by the two separate explosions to affect the Fukushima plant, one which occurred Saturday and one earlier today, monitoring stations in Alaska will not know if there is a threat from such radiation until Saturday at the earliest.
“Radiation detected at the Fukushima plant on Monday is twice the maximum seen so far,” the BBC is reporting, citing Kyodo News.
An Accuweather.com analysis highlights how prevailing wind trajectories would take the radiation from a westerly direction towards the west coast of the United States.
“A typical wind trajectory across the Pacific is westerly, since there is often a large dome of high pressure over the central Pacific and an area of low pressure in the Gulf of Alaska,” writes meteorologist Meghan Evans.
Today’s localized winds are set to carry any radiation out into the Pacific from a north westerly to south easterly direction. However, “The wind direction will switch to an onshore direction Monday night into Tuesday, threatening to send the radiation toward the population,” writes Evans.
“This is not good news, since an onshore direction would blow most of the radiation toward populated areas. An added threat is that with higher elevations just about 4 miles inland from the power plants, if a temperature inversion sets up in the atmosphere, radiation could be trapped.”
The worst case scenario is that localized winds could take the fallout south to Tokyo, and the prevailing westerly winds could also carry upper atmosphere particles towards the U.S.
It would take roughly seven days for the radiation to reach Anchorage, eight days until it reached Honolulu, ten days for Seattle and eleven days before it hit Los Angeles, according to figures calculated by Expert Senior Global Meteorologist Jim Andrews.
Assurances from officials that any radiation would dissipate over the Pacific Ocean before reaching the United States are tenuous given the fact that pollution from Chinese coal factories, traveling significantly greater distances, routinely hits California.
“Previous studies have documented that dust from Asia — especially from deserts and industrial regions of China — routinely crosses the Pacific Ocean on prevailing winds to sully the air over the western U.S.,” highlights Massie Santos Ballon, a student in the Science Communication Program at the University of California, Santa Cruz.
The Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory has also studied how, “About a third of the airborne lead particles recently collected at two sites in the San Francisco Bay Area came from Asia.”
Weather conditions will hugely influence where any potential radiation falls. If there is a significant amount of rainfall, which has been forecast for the next few days, the majority of the radiation will fall in a localized area. However, drier conditions will allow any radiation to travel much further.
As we featured in our earlier report, nuclear expert Joe Cirincione also fears that radiation from the Japanese nuclear plant could also reach the west coast.
When Fox News host Chris Wallace questioned whether radioactivity could travel thousands of miles across the Pacific, Cirincione responded, “Oh, absolutely. Chernobyl, which happened about 25 years ago, the radioactivity spread around the entire northern hemisphere. It depends how many of these cores melt down and how successful they are on containing it once this disaster happens.”
Concern surrounding the likely path of any radiation is emphasized by the fact that the French embassy is now, “Advising its citizens to leave Tokyo and its surroundings in case a cloud of radiation heads to the city.”