Tag Archives: Health Canada

2016 Biotic Monitoring Results: No Fukushima Contamination Detected in Salmon or Shellfish

Full results from 2016 InFORM salmon monitoring representing samples from 123 fish.
Results from 2016 InFORM salmon monitoring representing samples from 123 fish. Oceanic monitoring data were collected in 2015. Migration routes of various fish species are indicated with dashed lines.

More results from InFORM’s 2016 biotic monitoring results are now available and reveal that Fukushima contamination was not detected in sampled BC salmon after initial testing. These results are an update to the earlier report on the first 20 of the 123 fish donated by First Nations from 10 rivers in British Columbia and Yukon in 2016. Nine fish did have individual levels of 137Cs detected near the minimum detectable concentration (MDC). These levels (<0.7 Bq kg-1) are not known to present a significant health risk and are ~1,400x lower than the national and international action level (1000 Bq kg-1). For perspective, you would need to consume 1000-1500 kg of salmon at this concentration of cesium to receive the same radiation dose acquired during a single cross country flight. There has not been a significant increase to the total 137Cs concentration in BC salmon since InFORM monitoring began in 2014.

Continue reading 2016 Biotic Monitoring Results: No Fukushima Contamination Detected in Salmon or Shellfish

An InFORMal Gathering – Part 2

After my tour at the University of Ottawa, the day continued with a tour of the Radiation Protection Bureau facilities over at Health Canada on the south side of the city. After clearing through security, Drs. Jean-Francois Mercier and Michael Cooke, showed Cole and I around the lab spaces that are used by the Canadian Radiological Monitoring Network and where InFORM samples are run. Continue reading An InFORMal Gathering – Part 2

The Impact of the Fukushima on Canada: Health Canada Reports

By Jay T. Cullen

The purpose of this post is to bring to the attention of interested readers a recently released report that provides comprehensive account of the environmental radiation surveillance activities conducted by Health Canada in the months immediately following the Fukushima accident.  This report includes an assessment of the overall levels of contamination and resulting impacts to the health of Canadians.  Contrary to irresponsible and inaccurate rumors that Health Canada suspended monitoring in the wake of the triple meltdowns, monitoring activities were, in fact, enhanced and expanded to increase the flow of information and improve understanding of the implications of the contamination for environmental and public health.  While there was no discernible change in total background radiation a distributed system of monitoring stations and the rapid collection and measurement of environmental samples tracked the trace levels of atmospheric contamination across the country. The report concludes:

  1. conservative estimates of the maximum individual dose from Fukushima was less than 0.0003 (1/ 3,000) of the typical annual dose for a Canadian owing to natural background sources
  2. the additional dose resulting from Fukushima derived contamination is far less than the normal variation in dose from place to place in Canada
  3. there are likely to be no health impacts related to this small, incremental dose

Continue reading The Impact of the Fukushima on Canada: Health Canada Reports

Update: Monitoring Results For Sockeye Salmon and Steelhead Trout Collected Summer 2014

Summary of the amount of radioactive cesium isotopes in sockeye salmon and steel head trout harvested from BC waters in 2014 (Figure by Jonathan Kellogg jkellogg@uvic.ca).
Summary of the amount of radioactive cesium isotopes in sockeye salmon and steel head trout harvested from BC waters in 2014 (Figure by Jonathan Kellogg jkellogg@uvic.ca).

The measurements undertaken as part of the InFORM project to look for Fukushima derived radionculides in fish during our first of three years of monitoring are now complete. Sockeye salmon (Oncorhynchus nerka) and Steelhead Trout (Oncorhynchus mykiss) (as well as some Chinook, Chum and Pink Salmon) were caught off the west coast of Canada in Summer 2014 as they were returning to 9 different streams and rivers up and down the coast of British Columbia Canada. These results add to the first 19 fish which we reported on in December of 2014.

Continue reading Update: Monitoring Results For Sockeye Salmon and Steelhead Trout Collected Summer 2014

Health Canada/InFORM Analyses of the Radioactive Content of Fish Samples from Canada’s West Coast

This page mirrors information on the radionuclide content of fish measured by Health Canada and the InFORM project that can be found at Open Government, Open Data.

Continue reading Health Canada/InFORM Analyses of the Radioactive Content of Fish Samples from Canada’s West Coast