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Radionuclides around nuclear sites in England and Wales

Sanchez, A.L.; Horrill, A.D.; Singleton, D.L.; Leonard, D.R.P.. 1996 Radionuclides around nuclear sites in England and Wales. Science of the Total Environment, 181 (1). 51-63. 10.1016/0048-9697(95)04959-2

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Abstract/Summary

Environmental releases of low levels of radioactivity can occur as a consequence of normal operations at nuclear facilities. In England and Wales, the impact of gaseous discharges on the terrestrial environment is monitored routinely by the site operators as well as by Food Science Division of the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food. The terrestrial surveillance programme carried out by MAFF Food Science concentrates on agricultural produce to provide assessments of doses to members of the population derived from the consumption of terrestrial foodstuffs. We present here the results of a survey, undertaken in 1993 to supplement the monitoring data of MAFF, of artificial radioactive contamination around eighteen nuclear establishments in England and Wales. Grass and soil samples were used as indicators of environmental contamination at these sites for the radionuclides 137Cs, 90Sr, 239+240Pu and 241Am. When compared to estimated background radionuclide concentrations close to each site, these data reveal that four of the 18 sites have contributed measurable increases to both the 137Cs and 239+240Pu inventory within 500 m outside the boundary fence. Two additional sites showed slight increases above the expected background soil levels of 239+240Pu.

Item Type: Publication - Article
Digital Object Identifier (DOI): 10.1016/0048-9697(95)04959-2
Programmes: CEH Programmes pre-2009 publications > Other
CEH Sections: _ Pre-2000 sections
ISSN: 0048-9697
Additional Keywords: radioecology, environmental radioactivity, radiocaesium (137Cs), radiostrontium (90Sr), transuranic elements (239,240Pu, 241Am), terrestrial surveillance, monitoring
NORA Subject Terms: Ecology and Environment
Date made live: 21 Feb 2013 14:30 +0 (UTC)
URI: http://nora.nerc.ac.uk/id/eprint/21280

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