Small amounts of radioactive cesium were detected in samples of bluefin tuna caught off the coast of California last summer, just five months after the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant disaster in Japan, a study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Journal reports. —ARK
The levels were 10 times higher than those found in tuna in the same area in previous years, but still well below those that the Japanese and US governments consider a risk to health. Japan recently introduced a new safety limit of 100 becquerels per kilogram in food.
The timing of the discovery suggests that the fish, a prized but dangerously overfished delicacy in Japan, had carried the radioactive materials across the Pacific ocean faster than those conveyed by wind or water.