Frequent Questions

How does the beach environment affect radiation levels?

Background radiation varies from place to place and is quite variable, especially on a beach. Radium, thorium and uranium often concentrate on beaches because waves and wind remove lighter weight particles leaving these particles behind for a short amount of time before they too are moved by wind and water. Sometimes this may appear as small areas of dark gray, brown or black sand. There is no reason to immediately associate changing radiation levels on the beach with radioactive contamination from Japan.

 

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