Sometimes you just have to wonder about the quality of advice people are receiving through the media. Apparently it’s now OK to have your tuna with some seasoning caesium!

Would you like Caesium with your tuna salad?

The BBC reports:

 

Pacific Bluefin tuna caught off the coast of California have been found to have radioactive contamination from last year’s Fukushima nuclear accident.

 

The fish would have picked up the pollution while swimming in Japanese waters, before then moving to the far side of the ocean. Scientists stress that the fish are still “perfectly safe to eat.” (surely not, Ed.)

 

All the fish examined in the study showed elevated levels of radioactive caesium – the isotopes 134 and 137. Caesium-137 is present in seawater anyway as a result of the fallout from atomic weapons testing, but the short, two-year half-life of caesium-134 means the contamination can be tied directly to Fukushima. There is no other explanation for the isotope’s presence.

 

The measured concentrations were about 10 times the total caesium radioactivity seen in tuna specimens taken from before the accident. As a control, the team also examined Yellowfin tuna, which are largely residential in the eastern Pacific.

 

These animals showed no difference in their pre- or post-Fukushima concentrations. The research is likely to get attention because Bluefin tuna is an iconic species and a highly valuable fishery – thousands of tonnes are landed annually.But consumers should have no health concerns about eating California-caught tuna from last year, the team says.

 

“The levels of radioactivity are well within permitted limits, and below those from other radioisotopes that occur naturally in the environment, such as potassium-40.”

 

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Does it really need to be said that eating anything radioactive is not a sensible thing to do?  So, will the scientists who have determined that the fish are “perfectly safe to eat”, be scoffing tuna by the can anytime in the next decade? I think not.