Part of the Marshall Islands is now more radioactive than Chernobyl

A recent study by Columbia University scientists reveals a dangerous truth about the state of the former US Army nuclear test site in the Marshall Islands. Despite the fact that more than 60 years have passed since the end of the tests - twice as long as after the Chernobyl disaster - the radiation background on the four northern islands: Runit, Endzhebi, Bikini and Nayen is several times higher than in Pripyat. And this territory, with all the waste accumulated on it, is almost not controlled in any way.

In total, the Americans detonated 67 atomic bombs in the Marshall Islands. Waste management was done carelessly, partly due to underestimation of the threat of radioactive contamination, partly for bureaucratic reasons. The highest radiation levels were recorded in Bikini Atoll, where dozens of irradiated ships and other equipment were sunk.

38 soil samples were taken from 11 islands, in which the isotopes of plutonium, americium and cesium were primarily searched for. The results are shocking - in 2019, the plutonium level at Bikini was 1000 times higher than in 2009 in Chernobyl or in 2011 in Fukushima. Cesium-137 was found several times more than in Chernobyl 10 years after the Chernobyl accident, and scientists were especially surprised by its high content in fruits. This means that radioactive materials have abundantly saturated the earth and groundwater, and birds that eat them can carry contaminated particles far from the islands.

The results of the study are as follows. If the Chernobyl zone, with the exception of a number of places, today is conditionally safe even for tourist excursions, then it is better not to land on the deserted Marshall Islands at all.