This page was a fore-runner of the website of the larger group Scientists for Accurate Radiation Information (SARI) now at
Nevertheless the survey reported here may remain of interest.

Scientists for the Public Understanding of Radiation (SPUR) use simple commonsense arguments to dispel some of the myths and fears surrounding radiation and to suggest a sea change in international attitudes.

Wade Allison, Physics, University of Oxford, UK
Mohan Doss, Diagnostic Imaging, Fox Chase Cancer Center, USA
Ludwik Dobrzynski, Physics, National Centre for Nuclear Research, Poland
Ludwig Feinendegen, Nuclear Medicine, Heinrich-Heine University D�sseldorf, Germany

SPUR-1.pdf (624 Kb) ... Nuclear Radiation � friend or enemy? Its safety and its benefits at low levels justify its wider acceptance for improved public health and economic prosperity

Views = 83; YES = 73; NO = 10; Approval rating based on this sample = 88%

(Replies have not been edited. The table of NO replies follows that of the YES replies)

YES, do agree
2 David Evans Medical physicist New Zealand/ Grenada The image used causes apprehension which is not what is wanted. The public will not be able to see the wood from the trees. The article needs to be recast in a more public-friendly form. Would you like me to do this for you ?
3 Maciej Pylak PhD student Poland
4 anon Scientist UK
5 John Brenner Retired UK Congratulations! This is very clear statement of the issues and the way ahead - the best yet.
6 Leyland Power engineer New Zealand Nuclear power is by far, the safest from of power generation in the world. I am an expert in hydropower. One dam failure in China in the 1970s killed ~25,000 people
7 Michael PR Waligorski Prof of Physics and Medical Physics Poland Full support : examples (such as physical excercise) are well chosen and expose the dynamics, i.e. the dose-rate factor of radiation effects (such as fractination in radiotherapy). The cell is not a Rossi counter, nor is it an isolated system where damage cannot be completely repaired. High time we abandon Rossi's and Kellerer's microdosimetry - which is where the LNT concept was born.
8 James Coleman Accountant UK
9 William Barley Health physicist USA
10 anon Physicist Wales
11 Ron Mitchel Scientist Canada
12 Charles Pennington Engineer, R&D, author USA Very similar concept to what I submitted in February for publication in an Oxford journal. This approach is not just necessary, it's vital for our collective future
13 Sudhindar Thakur Scientist India In general, nuclear power is not as dangerous as it has made out to be, the perception must change, nuclear power is not capable of causing disasters needing disaster management interventions.
14 anon Retired UK
15 Lynn Ensley Entrepreneur USA What about the J curve and the positive effect of radiation on the body
16 Chris Baxter Computer consultant UK With modern communicatins technology, the entire world operates on panics. Most environmental warnings are rubbish, most medical scares have no foundation in reality, knee-jerk reactions against gun s, alcohol, violent video games and child sex scandals
17 Albert Stienstra Retired engibeer/professor Netherlands Very good document. I do not like fig.2. The electromagnetic spectrum is defined by frequency, not wavelength. Wavelength depends on the medium
18 Jeff Quantrill IT project manager UK About time this appalling misrepresentation of such an incredibly useful technology was tackled
19 Tim Churchill Retired UK An eminently sensible approach
21 Jan Pirrong Businessman USA
22 William Mullins Nuclear nanagement consultant USA
23 Mike Post Retired airline pilot DSc Hons Emg UK Well done
24 anon Retired USA It is hard to think of a situation in which ignorance is to be preferred to understanding
25 Gareth Watkins Retired anesthesiologist UK Support your essay, but who is it aimed at? Most of it is common knowledge to the scientifically literate but a significant proportion of readers will be confused by the 'units' of radiation, Grays, Becquerels, Sieverts which you do not explain in the text. The analogy between exercise and sunbathing is somewhat simplistic. I'm fully on your side, good effort but it needs to be more accessible to the Eng. Lit. graduates! re you 'reaching out' ( a horrible phrase of the post science literati) to those that you need to influence. The units of radiation, Grays, Becquerels, Sieverts are not explained in the text. The average Joe will switch off. The analogy comparing exercise with sunbathing is simplistic. Overall, a good initial effort but someone with a degree in Eng. Lit. should read the next one to see whether they can follow the argument. I'm firmly on your side. rt
26 Andrew Boothman Geological technician Canada
27 anon Retired nuclear physicist Cumbria I fully support the aims of this document. With respect to decommissioning, however it is very important to deal with the 'Legacy Ponds and Silos' at Sellafield.
28 Jan Wilenius Engineer Finland
29 Dr Phillip Bratby Retired nuclear engineer UK The article could do with better punctuation. The references to 'low carbon' and the dangers fo fossil fuels should be deleted as non-scintific nonsense. In the UK the term ALARA was replaced with ALARP (as low as reasonably practicable) because one could always achieve a lower risk, but there comes a point where it is neither practicable nor cost-effective to lower the risk.
30 John Assheton Business owner UK Far too many people still believe that radiation is only a bad thing and don't understand "dose" - excellent!
31 Lars Nyqvist Retired Finland
32 Ian Hore-Lacy Consultant Australia a valuable statement, especially comparison of UV and ionising radiation tissue effects.
33 Dr Helmut Urbahn Scientist retired Germany
34 Paolo Professional physicist Italy
35 anon Retired UK Excellent and thought provoking
36 Chris Long Software developer UK
37 anon Nuclear industry employee UK
38 anon Retired UK Not very impressed. First analogy is wrongly interpreted. Report uses a mixture of radiation units. Comments about evacuations around Fukushima are disingenuous since the final report makes it abundantly cleat that there was a serious risk of a major release.
40 David Bishop Retired Bahrain A useful reminder of Mencken's observation: �The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led."
41 Frank Crawford Health physicist USA Document is too technical for general public, and needs to be expanded upon. Worth doing!
43 Elizabeth Alderson Engineer Canada A lovely balanced piece of reasoning
44 Marc Vandorpe Engineer Belgium
45 Andrzej Andrzejcuk Scientist Poland
46 Paul Anderson Tech hazards specialist USA >Public statements need common experience references for credibility. Education is the key.
47 Richard Diebold Retired Canada Education will go a long way to aiding the survival of Planet Earth
48 Michael Stephens retired nuclear scientist Canada A very nice succinct summary of the question
49 Robert Winslow Engineer USA
50 Dean Cardno Business man Canada
51 Susan Ewens Retired UK
52 Paul Hughes retired dentist UK There was an excellent "Horizon" programme on BBC a few years ago saying exactly what your SPUR statement does. It deserves to be shown again
53 anon almost retired statistician Germany It would all be better without refering to climate. Sense, only at topic will do
54 Robert Hearn Scientist USA Nice explanation
55 Christopher Perry Retired airline pilot UK
56 Fred Klaas VP Operations, Photogenics Div, Mission Support... USA
57 Harold Nurse Netherlands
58 anon Engineer USA
59 M Premanik Engineer India
60 Douglas Wise Retired research scientist UK
61 Claus Grupen Professor of Physics Germany I generally agree with most of the statements, but one should
take care of a proper treatment of radioactive waste and to avoid
dumping of large quantities of liquid radioactice waste into
the ocean.
63 anon Senior academic administrator UK
67 Donuglas Hunter Engineer UK
68 anon Retired software developer Canada up with LFTRs
69 Robert Turner Retired engineer UK I worked in the Nuclear Engineering field for most of my working life. Firstly as a Nuclear Submariner, and then for the nuclear power plant design and build authority. My Mothers life was extended by radiation treatment, like wise so have 2 friends lives been extended by the same treatment. Nuclear Power is the safest large electrical power production system on the planet. Anybody who hasn't worked in the Nuclear Industry, and who doesn't understand the safety culture and the rigorous engineering standards imposed by the design specifications, would do well to undertake some research before making critical comments about, nuclear waste, accidents, radiation levels, and other related nuclear matters. They do mankind no favours with their ill founded comments. We should not be burning such a useful and limited resource which oil and gas provide. They are to valuable for other uses, not burning! Especially when a safe and clean alternative for power generation has been available for in excess of 40 years. The concept of ALARA is fundamentally wrong. It is more practical to operate within certain laid down levels for dose rates using the principles of ALARP.
70 Robert Hargraves Retired, author USA Well written prose, with good data in the bullet points. I think we also need some PowerPoint presentations where each page contains real data, displaying harm, or ionizations, or benefits. We need to persuade people with graphs, table, charts, etc that show real, observed data.
71 John MR Watson Retired UK Good luck
72 Ingmar Lindman Retired Finland
73 Michael Hart Scientist England Opponents will point out that Marie Curie suffered illness and possibly death as a result of her work with radioactive substances. The risks and hazards need to be sensibly managed.
75 anon Retired scientist New Zealand This article was forwarded by ********* who is editing a book I shall shortly publish on climate change. A good and truthful article.
77 anon Director of companies UK Great work, well done. The only way to combat ignorance is with good science
78 Diana Broadbent Retired New Zealand Sub editing book airmed at layperson understanding of nuclear energy, climate change and overpopulation
79 Theo Richel Science journalist Netherlands Wonderful text, only I could do without referring to the climate 'debate'. In fact both radiation fear (LNT) as fear for future heating are based on extrapolations based on assumption. The facts do not show any health dangers below 100 msv related to radiation, nor a catastrophic heating related to CO2. Both are theoretical constructs used for political purposes.
80 Mark Miller Certified health physicist USA
81 Rousseau Dasgupta Management Consultant UK
83 Martin Livermore Consultant - scientifically qualified UK

NO, do not agree
1 Greg Packer Innovator/designer /of Technology Australia I dont know where you aquire your biased information from! This is typical coming from people working in the nuclear industry. There is other technology out there that will eliminate the use of Uranium to generate power, if you want to know contact me.For x-ray /medical purposes it is essential but totally unnecessary for energy production.I have just designed a small supersonic engine that uses water as fuel and our technology. But does not leave mountains of spent radioactive fuel rods.Does anyone have a rediculous answer for the necessity to continue this stupidity.
20 Pete Wilkinson Environmental consultant UK The assertions made in the article are simplistic and naive. There are too many for me to comment on individually. I despair that you are not dedicating this level of energy to bringing both sides of the debate together to reduce the significant uncertainties around the impacts of low levels of exposure, particularly through inhalation and ingestion.
39 Anon Stakeholder Group England Numerous global epidemiological studies demonstrate that there is no safe level of exposure to poisonous radionucleides continuously discharged from nuclear sites. They are available from the Green Audit website and the Stop Hinkley website. Somerset coastal residents exposed to gaseous and liquid discharges from Hinkley Point have suffered premature deaths and chronic ill health among men, women and children since 1965 when the first Hinkley A Magnox reactors became operational. The two Hinkley AGR reactors are at risk of becoming the next Fukushima due to age related misaligned graphite bricks, failed boiler tube welds and faulty fuel pins. The regulators have just granted the site licensee permission to extend the AGR lifetime, not on their own independent assessment but relying on the operators' risk assessment. The problem with Wade Allison and other nuclear physicists is they have no understanding of the effects of man made radiation on the human body. If they would just spend the time to read all the scientific evidence of this, they would have to accept that nuclear power is now, always has been and always will be a danger to human life, not only existing populations but their children ad infinitum through heritable genetic mutations.
62 Richard Bramhall Company Secretary UK I see that your pages cite two favourable Amazon reviews of Radiation and Reason but ignore the critical one I posted on Amazon nearly 2 years ago. Mine is still the only critical review and I have refuted the attacks on it. Your refusal to address my criticism goes to the heart of what's wrong with your thesis; i.e. that you ignore microdosimetry. The same issue destroys the utility of the ICRP risk model though taking the argument in the opposite direction to the one you want.
64 Marianne Birkby Cumbrian artist and anti-nuclear activist England radiation is good for me? oh aye it can kill cancerous cell tissue faster than healthy cell tissue but good for me? maybe in a cartoon world your thesis could be believed but the thesis is not backed up by evidence only PR spin. Marianne Birkby | 04.09.2009 14:24 | Analysis | Climate Chaos | Health | World Bodysnatching, radioactive poisoning and infanticide, the nuclear industry has it all in spades. Is this alarmist, you might ask? No, not really. From Bardsea beach looking towards Heysham Let's look at "bodysnatching": remember the Redfern Inquiry into the taking of body parts from radioactively-contaminated workers in Cumbria? Radiation Free Lakeland has been contacted by many people anxious to know when the findings of this Inquiry will be revealed so that justice and closure can take place. That thousands of dead nuclear workers' organs were taken without consent for secret research into radiation poisoning was and is morally unacceptable. The government has put the Redfern Inquiry "on hold" indefinitely. What other industry can get away with such a suspension of justice and carry on with business as usual? Radioactive poisoning? Sellafield recently admitted to exposing two workers to dangerous levels of radiation in 2007 and were supposed to be sentenced in Carlisle's Crown Court on 21st August this year. This also has been held back and at the time of writing no new date has been set. Again, what other industry has such power and influence? Infanticide? In Germany, a major Government-sponsored scientific study recently uncovered very strong links between living near nuclear power plants and childhood leukaemia: these findings were accepted by its government. Many peer-reviewed scientific articles in respected journals have described these disturbing findings in detail. In essence, increased numbers of pregnant women near German nuclear reactors are having babies which later die of leukaemia. Let's call this by its proper name: infanticide. It appears we might be killing our babies for the sake of nuclear electricity. Should we be doing this? Should we be proposing to build yet more nuclear reactors? Where has our moral compass gone? Independent scientists have stated that whatever the explanation for these increased leukaemia deaths in babies, they raise difficult questions including whether vulnerable people - in particular, pregnant women and women of child-bearing age - should be advised to move away from nuclear facilities. What other industry would be allowed to get away with this nonsense? Can you imagine a chemical firm getting away with it? Some people appear to accept nuclear (often half-heartedly or with embarrassment) as they misguidedly think nuclear is a solution to global warming. But it isn't. The nuclear industry overall causes large carbon releases (think of uranium mining, milling and processing) and its potential for reducing UK CO2 emissions is a pitiful 4% according to the Government's Sustainable Development Commission in 2006. There are many options for reducing our CO2 emissions, but it turns out nuclear is the least cost effective. Just ask yourself - if nuclear power led to reduced reliance on oil then why is nuclear France's per capita consumption of oil higher than non-nuclear Italy, nuclear phase-out Germany or the EU average? But even if nuclear were everything the government and industry falsely claim regarding climate change - that would still not justify new build. Nuclear also results in our passing on dangerous nuclear wastes, for which there is no solution on the horizon, to our children and grandchildren and to future generations for many millennia: this is ethically and morally scandalous. So why are we being steam-rollered into a nuclear future? Let's stand up together and say, loudly, NO TO NUCLEAR. Medicine, Conflict and Survival Publication details, including instructions for authors and subscription information: Childhood cancers near German nuclear power stations: hypothesis to explain the cancer increases, Ian Fairlie Online Publication Date: 01 July 2009
65 Janet Thompson Organic fruit and veg trader UK Over whelming evidence of the dangers and illness caused by radioactive contamination esp. Low level which is more dangerous than thought. After Fukushima cancer rates have risen dramatically. Many cancers in villages around Sellafield , Cumbria, UK which are sometimes not recorded as such or the rates are manipulated. Madness to say radiation is beneficial.
74 anon Retired England It is difficult to take part in this exercise, as it is a strange premise which smacks of a blatant lack of basic research or, perhaps, blind acceptance of nuclear industry propaganda. Sad that such a respected academic institution should allow its name to be sullied in this way. Who is funding it? Also a premise which is disrespectful to the thousands of dead, dying and damage people globally afflicted by this dirty industry's leaks. Would recommend some light reading of factual matter and a look at the real effects of radiation exposure are - even on people unconnected with the industry.
76 Bob Appelbaum Agnotologist, Retired certified health physicist USA Are these "scientists" also Creationists? Creationists deny that DNA mutations under the forces of natural selection, genetic drift, and gene flow lead to the evolution of species. They deny evolution, which is the central theory of modern biology. These "scientists" deny the theory of LNT (calling it a "hypothesis" like Creationists refer to evolution). But LNT is analogous to evolutionary biology. In LNT, DNA mutations under the force of natural selection in the body's microenvironment cause certain cells to evolve into new "species" we call tumors. The secret of DNA's success is that it is mutable. If DNA repair were perfect, you would not be reading this.
82 anon retired USA nuclear radiation is NOT safe. Lets move on to cheaper safe renewable energy like solar and wind.
84 Mary Wyburn Scientist and human being UK Nuclear radiation is not safe. Yes we need power but nuclear is not the only choice. Economically the up front costs are huge and the clean up costs inconceivably high although actually unknown. Ditch nuclear and use our intelligence to generate power by other means.
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