The Environmental Protection Agency is seeking public comment on proposed changes to the Protective Action Guide (PAG) Manual. ?These proposed changes would significantly increase exposure to radiation after “radiological incidents” according to the whistle-blowing group?Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER). ?PEER initially raised concerns about these proposed changes in 2011 but the EPA continued with the planned modifications to the manual. PEER issued a new press release after the White House gave final approval for the changes.
“Since the PAGs … do not formally set standards or repeal statutory requirements…. they will go into full effect following a short public comment period. Nonetheless, the PAGs will likely determine what actions take place on the ground in the days, weeks, months and, in some cases, years following a radiological emergency.” (Source: PEER Press Release)
There is no “safe” level of exposure to low-dose radiation according to the 2005 report by the National Academy of Sciences. In fact,?”The health risks — particularly the development of solid cancers in organs — rise proportionally with exposure,” said epidemiologist Richard R. Monson, chair of the NAS committee that issued the report and professor at the Harvard School of Public Health. “At low doses of radiation, the risk of inducing solid cancers is very small. As the overall lifetime exposure increases, so does the risk.” (Source: Facing South)
This move by the EPA is in direct opposition to their mission:
EPA’s purpose is to ensure that:
1) All Americans are protected from significant risks to human health and the environment where they live, learn and work
This is a case of a known risk with substantial scientific evidence being summarily ignored to the public’s detriment.