A trend towards drier, hotter summers in the forests around the abandoned nuclear power plant at Chernobyl has increased the riks of forest fires in the region — which is a big deal, considering the fact that trees and plants in the area have absorbed some of the radioactive isotopes from the 1986 disaster. If they burn, more people will be exposed to airborne particles. It's a small fraction compared with the people exposed by the original Chernobyl power plant fire, but still dangerous.

7 Responses to “Risk of forest fires rising near Chernobyl”

  1. fuzzyfuzzyfungus says:

    The first time around they ended up burying a bunch of seriously dead trees. Is that considered a futile exercise, or impractically expensive, or just a faster way to encourage exiting isotopes to visit the scenic groundwater?

  2. crenquis says:

    Google farber wood ash and you will get plenty of links on the amount of radioactive materials in trees from the atomic bomb tests.  Basically, wood ash has ~10xs the concentration of cs-137/sr-90 that would require disposal as radioactive waste if it came out of a licensed (rad) facility.

  3. brainflakes says:

    But would that release more or less radiation than burning coal does? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Environmental_impact_of_the_coal_industry#Radiation_exposure

    • crenquis says:

      But coal releases natural radiation…  ;) 
      Everybody knows that nuke plants shoot out cancer beams (pew pew) but living somewhere like Ramsar, Iran or Guarapari, Brasil has little excess risk.

    • Cowicide says:

      Hmmm… how about solar energy? wind energy? geothermal? tidal?  Why leave all that out of the equation?

  4. Finnagain says:

    Clearly trees cause even more pollution than previously thought!

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