Source: GlobalPost 21/3/13
Author: Justin McCurry and Michael Condon
[...] Attempting to keep radiation levels down in residential areas could prove futile, according to Ian Fairlie, a London-based independent consultant on radioactivity in the environment. Fairlie, who had just returned from a conference on the Fukushima crisis in New York, said there was evidence that some areas recorded the same levels of radioactive cesium-137 just 24 hours after they had supposedly been contaminated.
“This was found too after Chernobyl, where cleanups were largely ineffectual,” he said. “[Decontamination] is good for reassurance and official statements, but poor for actual dose reduction. I think the 20 km zone and other areas will have to remain permanently evacuated. That will be awful for the [tens of thousands of people] affected, but I can’t really see any other way.” [...]
“It’s clear that [ministry] officials are finding this much harder than they expected,” said Shinichi Nakayama, deputy director of the JAEA’s Fukushima Environmental Safety Center. “No one has experience of undertaking a cleanup of this size. It isn’t something you can do by following a manual. It’s a massive technical challenge.” [...]