By Dana Beyerle Montgomery Bureau Chief | Tuesday, March 29, 2011 at 3:30 a.m.
MONTGOMERY | Trace amounts of radiation from the ongoing Japanese nuclear plant crisis have shown up in Alabama, the Environmental Protection Agency said Monday.
Radioactive isotopes from the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear plant, which was damaged during the March 11 earthquake and tsunami, have been detected in air filters at monitoring sites in Alabama and eight other states and Pacific islands.
“This is slightly above (normal) background … and far below health concerns,” EPA spokeswoman Davina Marraccini said in a telephone interview.
The EPA said that detailed filter analyses from 12 RadNet air monitor locations, including one in Montgomery, produced trace amounts of “radioactive isotopes consistent with the Japanese nuclear incident.”
The 12 monitoring sites are in Alabama, Alaska, Hawaii, Idaho, Nevada, Washington state, Guam, Saipan and the Northern Mariana Islands.
“Some of the filter results show levels slightly higher than those found by EPA monitors last week and a Department of Energy monitor the week before,” the EPA said.