Enfeebled by mutations
Many scientists are speaking about the influence of the radioactive particles scattered during the Fukushima disaster, but none of them is analyzing the problem from a genetic point of view. Only germ cell genes are responsible for heredity. It was discovered in 1927 that radiations could affect germ cell genes, in other words that they caused them to mutate. When people think about “mutations”, many of them would think about malformations, but in fact they are rarely due to mutations. Most of mutations would cause slight body weakness, dull the mind and weaken the immune system, letting us more vulnerable to infectious diseases and cancer. But as those changes are almost imperceptible, neither the interested nor his family would notice anything. It has also been proved by experiments on animals that it shortened their life span.
Slight but real damages to the future generations
Regarding the influence of Fukushima nuclear accident on the gene pool, we must think of Japanese people as a whole. People from southern islands of Kyushu and Shikoku do not feel concerned with the nuclear disaster, but after a few generations, people would be migrating and the mutated genes would mix with others, spreading all over the country. That is the reason why gene mutations put the future of Japan at risk if we consider the whole Japanese people gene pool.
The most important aspect of the problem is the internal exposure to radiations (by ingesting irradiated food for example), but many searchers are only looking at external irradiation. When it comes to internal irradiation, the effects on the person irradiated differ from the influence on his/her children. To fear that those effects pass on to the next generations is the reality of DNA mutations.
To say that “There aren’t any effects appearing at the moment” is not the least appropriate when speaking about the safety of nuclear radiations. Indeed, the effects of radiation exposure only manifest themselves in the future.
Nowadays, it is possible to detect some diseases on infants through examinations, but there are also hereditary diseases appearing only later, like mental disabilities, that can’t be diagnosed just after birth. However, all those represent only a tiny fraction of the effects brought about by the radiations, and it is only when the number of hereditary diseases and anomalies will go up amongst the next generations that we will realize it is the influence of radiations.
Few people work at places where they are exposed to radioactive rays, therefore even if there are repercussions on the next generations, it will only concern a limited number of people, which is why it is tolerated. But the problem in the present case is that more than a million citizens are breathing in and ingesting quite a lot of radioactive particles, which makes the situation very different from the workers’ one. Moreover, children, youngsters and pregnant women are also living there, so it is of utmost importance to prevent them from being exposed to radiations as much as possible.