Map of radiation levels on farmland released
Japan’s agriculture ministry has unveiled a map of radiation levels in agricultural areas. It shows levels of radioactive cesium are higher than the government-regulated standard in some areas.
The ministry drew up the map based on analysis of soil samples taken at 580 locations in 6 prefectures including Fukushima where the tsunami-damaged nuclear power plant is located.
The map released on Monday shows radioactive cesium exceeding the regulated level of 5,000 bequerels per kilogram in 9 locations. Vegetables and fruit are grownin the farmland.
The government has banned rice planting on farmland contaminated with radioactive cesium higher than 5,000 bequerels per kilogram, following the accident at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant.
The map shows contamination of 8,571 bequerels on a field in Date City and 6,882 bequerels in Iwaki City, both in Fukushima Prefecture.
In areas where rice planting has been prohibited, including Namie Town and Iitate Village in Fukushima, the map shows radioactive cesium of over 20,000 bequerels per kilogram.
The agriculture ministry plans to increase monitoring around the highly contaminated farmland.
Monday, August 29, 2011 20:26 +0900 (JST)