Claim: Extremely high radiation levels in the US.

Steve Funk

Senior Member.
This claim of extremely high radiation levels is circulating on Facebook:

The above source does not specifically link this to Fukushima, but the data is cited in a Fukushima story here:

In order to verify the historic data, from the Nuclear Emergency Tracking Center You need a paid account. Is there anyone here who can access this? I really don't have a good grasp on the Relationship between counts per minute and actual REM exposure, or whether this data is a momentary peak, hourly average or daily average.


Senior Member.

There is a free network of more or less continuously active geiger counters. Even without equalizing rates ("count" isn't a standardized unit and varies by a factor of 3 depending on the type of counter - sites with darker borders are models that give higher count rates*), no counter in the network has ever significantly exceeded 100 cpm, even the two in Japan (and for some time after the accident there was one very close to Fukushima). The highest on the network right now looks like 45, and is not trending upwards. In fact, there are no upward or downward trends at all, globally (most of the network is in the US, but there are stations in Europe, South America, Japan, and Australia).

The historial data doesn't go back to 2011, but the highest spike in recent memory is a staggering 17 in early 2013.

*-the fact that the data isn't clustered around two points itself suggests it's bunk, as you can see in the network map there are clusters around the 10's and 40's, with the higher counts being counter models with a pancake-type tube, which have a count rate about three times higher than models with a standard tube.

Another point, geiger counters can't distinguish alpha, beta, gamma, X-ray, or harmless photon radiation. For models that can detect neutron radiation, they also can't distinguish that from the rest. You need different instruments to do this, and "count" is a term unique to geiger counters.
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Senior Member.
RadNet query is what you want.

The guy who makes those bogus weekly reports uses Gamma Energy Range 5 Gross for his gamma CPM.

Tips and tricks to make RadNet query work:
If your browser says it prevented the website from re-directing to another page then hit "allow" or it will sit there forever. It is very slow and only returns 400 data points per query (which is about 16 days worth of data). If you open it in Excel be sure to enable "detect special numbers" so it will recognize dates and times.
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Senior Member.
RadNet query is acting all wonky. It won't return results from before 2011. They changed the input interface since the last time I used it; they might have buggered it.

Steve Funk

Senior Member.
Thanks Hevach. I have seen radiation network before, and I was thinking it was the same site as Nuclear Emergency Tracking Center. It's not, but their graphics are very similar. Here, from radiation network, is a specific response to the link I originally cited:

Critical Thinker

Senior Member. Link

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