|Under Special Government permits, "decontaminated" radioactive metal is being sold to manufacture everything from knives, forks, and belt buckles to zippers, eyeglasses, dental fillings, and IUDs. The Department of energy (DOE), the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC), and the radioactive metal processing industry are pushing for new regulations and that would relax current standards and dispense with the need for special radioactive recycling licensing. By one estimate, the DOE disposed of 7,500 tons of these troublesome metals in 1996 alone. The new standard being sought would allow companies to recycle millions of tons of low-level radioactive metal a year while raising the acceptable levels of millirems (mrems), a unit of measure that estimates the damage radiation does to human tissue. By the NRC's own estimate, the proposed
standards could cause 100,000 cancer fatalities
in the United States alone.
Metal companies want
to raise the standard from an almost unmeasurable amount to something more in the vicinity of 10 mrems per year. The NRC studies the health effects of that exact standard back in 1990 and found that this dosage would
lead to about 92,755 additional cancer deaths
in the United States alone. According to Progressive reporter Cusac, some Scientists argue that exposure to continual low-dose radiation is potentially more dangerous than a one-time, high-level dose. She cites Steve Wing, epidemiologist at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill: "The cancer curve rises more steeply at low doses than high doses." Richard Clapp, associate professor in the department of environmental health at the Boston University School of Public Health, says that the greatest threat comes from those household products with which you have the most contact, where "you're sitting on it
or if it's part of your desk, or in the frame of your bed - where you have constant exposure for several hours.
While the DOE waits for new standards to be released, says Cusac, "hot metal" is being marketed to other countries. Three major U.S. oil companies (Texaco, Mobil, and Phillips) shipped 5.5 million pounds of radioactive scrap metal to China in 1993. In June 1996, chinese officials stopped a U.S. shipment of 78 tons of radioactive scrap metal that exceeded China's safety limit, some of it by 30-fold.& nbsp; As of January 1998, 178 buildings in Taiwan containing 1,573 residential apartments, had been identified as radioactive.
Radioactive recycled metal has shown up in domestic markets as well. When a Buffalo, New York television station offered to survey suspect gold jewelry in the 1980's it turned up three radioactive pieces in the first two days which
prompted the New York State health Department to begin a comprehensive campaign to find radioactive, contaminated jewelry. According to the journal, Health Physics, in 1986, out of more than 160,000 pieces surveyed, 170 pieces were radioactive. News accounts reported that at least
14 people had developed finger cancer
and several more had fingers and even parts of their hands amputated because of "hot" jewelry.
"This is not a glamorous industry," said Tom Gilman, government accounts manager for U.S. Ecology, which buys, cleans, and resells low-level radioactive scrap metal. Most of it comes from commercial sites, but some comes from DOE.
U.S. Ecology "scrubs" and sells it as clean scrap. From there the metal travels to a steel mill and enters the general consumer market. Gilman claims that U.S. Ecology is "turning waste into assets." He is careful to add, however, that the metal his company is recycling
into the metal stream isn't completely clean. "'Acceptable'
levels is the word to use," he explains, "There's always going to be some level
"The recycling of radioactive metal into household products could pose a serious public-health threat in the coming century. The radioactive metal recycled from decommissioned nuclear reactors in the United States alone could number in the millions of tons. But by the NRC's own estimate, even an exposure standard of 10 millirems a year (the standard favored by the radioactive metal industry) would lead to 92,755 cancer deaths in the United States alone.
"Since my story was published, the commerce in hot metals has been proceeding briskly. In mid-September, Nuclear Waste News reported: 'Western authorities are growing increasingly concerned about illegal trafficking in radioactive scrap metal from Russia and other former Communist states.' According to the article, the contaminated metal, 'most of which comes from decommissioned nuclear power stations, radiation monitoring equipment, and waste containers, is finding its way into metal products, including household items in Europe.' The International Atomic Energy Agency says that the problem is growing, partly as a result of the recent fall in the value of the ruble, and that some of the metal is 'going even further afield.'
by Author: Anne-Marie Cusac
"One new development suggests that radioactive metal recyclers in the United States are looking toward hot metal imports as a big moneymaker. In September (1997), the Nuclear Regulatory Commission issued a license to Allied Technology Group of Richland, Washington. The license gives that company permission to import approximately 1.5 million pounds of 'radioactive scrap tubing and tube plate' from the Taiwan Power Company's Chinshan Nuclear Power Station for the purposes of 'decontamination and recovery of the metal for recycling,' say James Kennedy, senior project manager in the division of Waste Management at the NRC. Shipments should begin (began) in February, 1998.
"Meanwhile, the NRC is working on the development of a new standard that could allow for a huge increase in the amount of radioactive metal allowed into consumer goods. The Commission plans to solicit public comment on the issue beginning next August (of 1999? It must be a small calling. Anyone hear about this?)
"But the public has little idea that radioactive metal could be turning up in frying pans and belt buckles. The mainstream media has not covered this issue. Such a lapse of this important health issue effectively blocks public monitoring of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission"
Nuclear Waste Disposal, and Internally Planted Nuclear Bombs by Illuminati Operatives.
S. National Cancer Institute
Fails to Share Evidence on Cancer Risks
of the National Cancer Act
The U. S. National Cancer Institute (NCI)
instant access to the media, Public Relations
operations, and close
contacts with Congress.
Fully utilizing these outreach resources NCI
issues a prodigious ongoing stream of
information, press releases,
public educational materials. The latter include
Comprehensive Public Cancer Database System
dealing with screening,
research, and the latest claimed advances in
treatment. In sharp contrast, NCI makes little or
no effort to warn the
public of well-documented
risks, based on experimental and/or
epidemiological evidence, from unknowing exposure
to a wide range of
including those in consumer products, food,
cosmetics, toiletries, and household products. As
National Cancer Institute has
also failed to warn of potential carcinogenic
risks on the basis of incomplete or suggestive,
although not definitive,
evidence and also to
direct high priority to research and advocacy on
such risks. Such failure disregards fundamental
principles of public
health and the scientific
basis of the Precautionary Principle. This
mandates the categorical responsibility of
industry to provide
unequivocal evidence on the
safety of any new candidate product or process
before its introduction into commerce, thereby
ensuring that it does not
pose potential or
recognized human or environmental risks.
The U. S. National Cancer Institute has not
attempted to develop a registry of avoidable
including body burden
data (p. 19), and make it available to the
This is in striking contrast to the
extensive user-friendly public
outreach programs of NCI and ACS on cancer
screening. Until such a registry
becomes available, in the absence of an
emergency, patients should specifically request
on the risks of any drug,
available in the Warnings and Precautions section
of the annual Physicians Desk Reference. This is
also in striking
contrast to the misleading May
1998 response by past NCI Director Klausner
question by Congressman Obey whether NCI’s Cancer
Service provides the public with a
registry of avoidable carcinogens. NCI’s
effectively denies U.S. citizens of their
information on avoidable causes of a wide range
cancers which could empower them to reduce
their own risks of disease and
death. In this,
the cancer establishment appears to make common
with the chemical industry.
This longstanding denial of citizens’
Right-to-Know impacts disproportionately on low
income black and other
ethnic minorities, besides
raising serious concerns on environmental
justice. These population sub-groups are at
particularly high risk in
view of their general
discriminatory location near petrochemical
hazardous waste sites, municipal
incinerators, and nuclear reactors.
cancer establishment has rarely, if ever,
epidemiological cluster analyses of
claimed excess incidences of a wide
cancers in such communities, let alone
relation to local exposure to industrial carcinogens.
establishment’s denial of
Right-to-Know extends to failure to provide
Federal and State agencies with scientific data
on carcinogenicity on
which regulatory decisions
are critically based, claiming that this is not
their responsibility. However, regulatory
agencies are charged with a
wide range of other
responsibilities. They also lack the authority
wealth of scientific and educational
resources specifically directed to
are heavily invested in the cancer establishment;
regulatory agencies are also susceptible to
industry lobbying and, more
from pro-industry administrations. Most
critically, NCI and ACS have rarely, if ever,
provided such data to
Congress as a necessary
basis for developing appropriate legislation and
regulatory authority, apart from failing to
inform the public-at-large
It should be stressed that NCI's silence on
prevention is in violation of the
1971 National Cancer Act's specific charge
disseminate cancer information to the public."
This silence is in
further denial of the 1988
Amendments to the National Cancer Program (Title
42, Sec. 285A), which call for "an expanded and
program for the prevention
of cancer caused by occupational or environmental
exposure to carcinogens."
The silence of the ACS and its track
primary prevention (Appendix V) is in contrast to
misleading claims for advocacy, as
emphasized in its Cancer Facts and
"Cancer is a political, as well as medical,
psychological, and economic issue. Every
day, legislators make decisions
that impact the
lives of millions of Americans who have been
cancer. To affect those decisions
positively, the Society has identified
as part of its mission and as one of its top
priorities, and works nationwide to
promote beneficial policies, laws, and
regulations for those affected by cancer."
Avoidable causes fall into
posing widely differing types of empowerment,
from the personal to political:
Consumer products: NCI and ACS have
inform the public of available information on
carcinogenic ingredients and contaminants
in food, cosmetics and toiletries,
products. They have also failed to provide such
information to Congress, and to urge regulatory
agencies to require
explicit identification and
warning labels for all such carcinogens. Such
market place pressures would then enable
consumers to boycott those
unsafe products in favor of socially responsible
businesses, which are increasingly marketing safer products.
A wide range of carcinogenic drugs are
commonly prescribed to patients in
the absence of
legally-required informed consent, and of any
alternatives. The cancer establishment has
failed to systematize such
circulate it to all physicians and the public,
recommend explicit warning labels on all
carcinogenic drugs. Patients should
their physicians to provide them with any such
(experimental and epidemiological) of
cancer risks, as identified in the
Precautions section of the annual Physicians Desk
(PDR). For drugs so identified,
patients should request available
There is now strong evidence that
dose" ionizing radiation from diagnostic
particularly CT scans and
fluoroscopy, poses significant risks of cancer.
These risks are avoidable, as average doses can
be substantially reduced
without any loss of
image quality. Emergencies apart, patients should
seek radiologists who are increasingly practicing
Environmental: The cancer establishment has
collate and systematize avoidable
information on carcinogenic contaminants
and water on an ongoing basis, and to make this
to the public (12). This
information has now become available, at
community and zip code locations, in the
Scorecard (p. 17). Such
information would enable activist citizen groups
to take political action at the state level in
efforts to reduce these
It should be stressed that neither NCI nor ACS
have considered, let alone initiated,
epidemiological analyses to
cancer clusters in highly polluted
Occupational: There is substantial information on
range of carcinogenic products and
processes to which some 11 million men
million women are exposed (12). While industries
than 10 workers are required, by
the Occupational Safety and Health
Administration, to supply them with Material
Safety Data Sheets, such
information is generally
inadequate and often misleading. While some
unions take aggressive action to reduce
exposure, this is by no
means the rule. Furthermore, plants employing
less than 10 workers, generally lower
socio-economic ethnic minorities,
exempt from any such protective measures. Again,
ACS should systematize such information
and make it fully available to
unions and workers on a national basis.
Finally, the cancer
funding of a nationwide network of research
institutes and hospitals virtually ensures the
silence or reticence of
epidemiologists and other scientists on primary
prevention. These constraints were strikingly
exemplified in a
widely-publicized May 2002
Public Broadcasting Service television report,
and Chemicals, on the relationship between
chemical exposures and
childhood cancer, and
other diseases. The program featured
well-qualified experts, some funded by the cancer
expressed strong concerns
while misleadingly stressing the inadequacy of
current information. One stated: "We suspect that
children who are
exposed to pesticides are at
greater risk of childhood cancer than other
children. But mostly we don't know." Another
claimed: "We have a very
serious lack of
information of how to go about preventing these
diseases, because we haven't had enough
information." For these
reasons, the experts
called for a “National Children's Study” over the
next 20 years at a cost of $50 million annually.
However, this proposal
and longstanding available scientific information
on avoidable causes of childhood cancer, of which
the public still
remains uninformed by the cancer
establishment. Additionally, no mention was
of the primary responsibility of the NCI and ACS,
whose funding is
more than adequate, to undertake
further research on avoidable causes of
1. Ries, L.A.G., Eisner, M.P.,
Hankey, B.F., Miller, B.A., Clegg, L., Edwards,
(eds). SEER Cancer Statistics Review,
1973-1999, National Cancer Institute,
Bethesda, MD, 2002.
2. Dinse, G.E., Umbach, D.M., Sasco, A.J., Hoel,
D.G., Davis, D.L. Unexplained Increases in Cancer
Incidence in the
United States from 1975 to 1994:
Possible Sentinel Health Indicators? Ann.
Rev. Public Health 20:173-209, 1999.
3. Edwards, B.K., Howe, H.L., Ries,
M.J., Rosenberg, H.M., Yancik, R., Wingo, P.A.,
Feigal E.G. Annual Report to the
Nation on the Status of Cancer, 1973-1999,
Featuring Implications of Age and Aging on the U.S. Cancer
Cancer, 94(10):2766-2792, 2002.
4. Davis, D., Hoel, D.
(eds.). Trends in Cancer
Mortality in Industrial Countries. New York
Academy of Sciences 6001:1-347, 1990.
5. Bailar, J. & Gornik,
H.L. Cancer Undefeated.
New Eng. J. Med. 336(22):1569-1574,
6. Clapp, R.W. The Decline in U.S. Cancer
Mortality from 1991
to 1995: What's Behind the
Numbers? Int. J. Health Services 28(4):747-755,
7. Greenberg, D. Science, Money, and Politics.
Chicago Press, Chicago, IL, 2001.
8. Clegg, L.X., Feuer, E.J., Midthune,
M.P., Hankey, B.F. Impact of Reporting Delay and
Error on Cancer Incidence Rates and
Trends. J. Nat. Cancer Inst.
9. Begley, S. New Statistics Show Increase, Not
Decline in Cancer Rates. The Wall Street Journal, October 16, 2002, p.
10. Kolata, G. "Test Proves Fruitless, Fueling
New Debate on
Cancer Screening." The New York
Times, April 9, 2002. (See also Gøtzche,
Commentary: Medicalization of Risk Factors. BMJ 324:890-891,
11. Fellers, L. "Taxol is One of the Best Cancer
Discovered by the Federal Government:
Why Is It Beyond Some Patients'
Washington Post Magazine, May 31, 1998.
12. Epstein, S.S.
The Politics of Cancer,
Revisited. East Ridge Press, Fremont Center, NY,
1998. (Extensive scientific information on the
causes and prevention of
cancer and public policy.)
13. Doll, R. & Peto, R. The Causes of
Quantitative Estimates of Avoidable Risks of
Cancer in the U.S.
Today. J. Nat. Cancer Inst. 66:1191-1308, 1981.
14. Stallones, R. A.
& Downs, T.A. A Critical
Review of Estimates of the Fraction of Cancer
the U.S. Related to Environmental Factors. Report
to the American
Industrial Health Council,
Houston, University of Texas School of Public
15. Landrigan, P. Commentary: Environmental
Preventable Epidemic. Am. J. Pub. Health 82 (7):941-943, 1992.
Anderson, S.J., Culver, A.A., Dorfman, M.H.,
Hughes, A.S. Expanding the
Right-to-Know: Materials Accounting Data as a
Promoting Environmental Justice and
Pollution Prevention. INFORM, Inc.,
, New York, NY, 2000.
17. Greaves, P., Goonetilleke, R., Nunn, G.,
Topham, J., Orton, T. Two-Year Carcinogenicity
Study of Tamoxifen in
Wistar-Derived Rats. Cancer Research 53(17):3919-3924,
18. White, J. (CEO Canadian Cancer Society),
Letter to Guelph
Mercury, Ontario, Canada, April 9, 2002.
19. Kliewer, E.V., Smith, K.R.
Mortality Among Immigrants in Australia and
Nat. Cancer Inst. 87 (15):1154-1161, 1995.
20. Lichtenstein, P., Holm,
N., Verkasalo, P.,
Iliadou, A., Kaprio, J., Koskenvuo, M., Pukkala,
Skytthe, A., Hemminki, K. Environmental and
Heritable Factors in the
Causation of Cancer:
Analyses of Cohorts of Twins from Sweden,
and Finland. New Eng. J. Med. 343(2):78-85, 2000.
21. Willett, W.C.
Balancing Life-style and
Genomics Research for Disease Prevention. Science
22. Epstein, S.S. Evaluation of the National
Cancer Program and Proposed Reforms. Am. J. Ind. Med. 24:109-133,
23. Baker, B.P., Benbrook, C.M., Groth, E.,
Pesticide Residues in
Conventional, Integrated Pest Management
(IPM)-Grown and Organic Foods: Insights from
Three U.S. Data Sets. Food
Additives and Contaminants 19(5):427-446, 2002.
24. Epstein, S.S.,
Hauter, W. Preventing Food
Poisoning: Sanitation not Irradiation. Int. J.
Health Services 31(1):187-192, 2001. (This
publication was endorsed by
over 20 leading
international scientists, besides consumer
25. Tourgeman, D.E, Amezcua, C., Boostanfar, R.,
F.Z., Felix, C., Paulson, R.J.
Agonistic Effects of Raloxifene on Ovarian
Adenocarcinoma (OVCAR-3) Cells. Abstract.
Presented at the 17th Annual
Meeting of the
European Society of Human Reproduction and
Lausanne, Switzerland, July 1-4, 2001.
26. National Toxicology Program,
Carcinogenesis Studies of Methylphenidate
in F 344/N Rats and B6C3F1 Mice.
Technical Report Series No. 439, July,
27. International Agency for Research on Cancer. Atrazine,
28. Hayes, T.B., Collins, A., Lee, M., Mendoza,
Noriega, N., Stuart, A., Vonk, A.
Hermaphroditic, Demasculinized Frogs After
Exposure to the Herbicide Atrazine at Low
Ecologically Relevant Doses.
Proc. Nat. Acad. Sci. 99(8):5476-5480, 2002.
29. Wilson, D. Fateful
Harvest: The True Story of
a Small Town Global Industry, and a Toxic Secret.
Harper Collins, New York, 2001.
30. Busby, C., Bertell, R.,
I., Cato, M.S., Yablokov, A. 2003 Recommendations
the ECRR (European Committee on Radiation
Risk). Health Effects of Ionising
Exposure at Low Doses for Radiation Protection
Regulators’ Edition, Green Audit,
Brussels, 2003; supported by over 40
international radiation experts. (<http://www.euradcom.org>www.euradcom.org
31. Gould, J.M., Sternglass, E.J., Sherman, J.D.,
McDonnell, W., Mangano, J.J.
Strontium-90 in Deciduous Teeth as a Factor in
Early Childhood Cancer. Int. J. Health Services 30(3):515-539,
32. Havas, M. Biological Effects of Non-ionizing
Electromagnetic Energy. Environ. Rev. 8:173-253, 2000.
S.S. GOT (genetically engineered)
MILK! The Monsanto rBGH/BST Milk Wars
E-book and Print on Demand book, Seven Stories
34. Epstein, S.S. Legislative Proposals for
Cancer Epidemic and Controlling
Run-Away Industrial Technologies. Int. J.
Services 30(2):353-371, 2000. (Based on an
invited address to the
following receipt of the Right Livelihood Award,
The Alternative Nobel Prize).
Cancer Before it Starts: How to Win the War on
Cancer, 2003 by Samuel S.
Epstein, M. D.
Cancer Prevention Coalition
of Illinois at Chicago
School of Public Health
2121 W. Taylor St., MC
Chicago, IL 60612