Harmless traces of radioactive cesium have been discovered in fish and seawater in several areas of Japan, as the country continues to debate whether their fish is safe to consume and anti-nuke protests grow in the wake of the Fukushima disaster.
Japan’s Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT) stated that radioactive cesium, presumably from the crippled Fukushima I nuclear plant, was found in seawater and fish in several regions of the country, Russian news agency Itar-Tass reported from Tokyo.
The aquatic radiation was detected in central Japan (Shizuoka Prefecture), the western part of central Honshu (Niigata) and the country’s northeast (Iwate).
The concentrations of radioactive particles are very small, and pose no health risks to humans, MEXT said. The ministry believes that cesium may have traveled to the area in rainfall.
Radioactive cesium is a human-made radioactive isotope produced through the nuclear fission of the element cesium. It has a half-life of 30 years, making it extremely toxic.
Earlier this year, low levels of radioactive cesium were found in fish just off Japan’s east coast, which was believed to have originated from the Fukushima plant.
The Ministry continues to closely monitor and verify traces of radiation in seawater and fish following the 2011 nuclear disaster at the Fukushima-Daiichi complex.