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In the media you find numerous reports concerning an imminent danger that terrorists will gather radioactive material and use conventional explosives to spread it over a large area, which then will be uninhabitable for a long time.

Apparently nobody will take the trouble to go into details, except for example to tell:
“They [Isis] are working on a series of attacks with radioactive substance. A ‘radioactive tsunami’ of Europe which would remove millions of people from the earth. The largest religious Holocaust the world has seen. “

Although it has been mentioned many times, it is not possible.

Long time before this hopeful terrorist has collected just one % of the necessary, he will die a miserably, but not that glorious death from acute radiation poisoning.

Still you can find alarming reports that radioactive material has been stolen or “lost”.
It comes to eg 50 kg uranium – Not even enough to contaminate half a square meter.

Allow me to raise a number of questions, to which I unfortunately can not provide complete answers – but better than most.

But first:
The many confusing units is a recurring challenge.
Milli Sievert is the unit of biological effects of ionizing (radioactive) radiation.
There has never been found injuries after brief irradiation under 100 mSv
500 mSv is 100 times the normally permitted. This will cause minor symptoms of acute radiation sickness, but does not call for shorter lifespans.
3,500 mSv will cause half of the irradiated will die and that the survivors will have an average life span three years less than the general population.
If the radiation is spread over longer time, it is less harmful.
1000 mSv per year will not be harmful if it is evenly distributed over the year.
Bq Becquerel is one radioactive decay per second and is a very small unit:
We all carry around with some 4,500 Bq from natural sources.

Unfortunately, there is no clear relationship between mSv and Bq
Alpha and Beta radiation would only be dangerous if the radioactive material eaten or inhaled.
Neutron radiation causes severe radiation damage, but is found only a short time after a nuclear bomb explosion.
Gamma radiation can be very harmful.

How dangerous is ionizing (radioactive) radiation?

  • It is known that populations have lived for generations in areas with fairly high natural radioactivity.
    Far more than the “permissible”.
    However, without the expected injury taking place.
    Most pronounced is the area around Ramsar in Pakistan:
    More than 200 mSv / year, mostly from radon.
  • I reject numerous, obvious fake atrocity stories, probably originating from Greenpeace or followers.
  • For political reasons there has been set unrealistically low values for permissible radiation. Both at Chernobyl and Fukushima.


How much does it take to make a large area uninhabitable?
And how many kg / ton material will be needed?
Here I can not give a precise answer.
But it will need much more than a terrorist can ‘just’ find in hospitals and the like.
My guess is that it will be necessary to empty a good lot of stuff out of a pair of nuclear reactors.
But now comes the real question:

How should this terrorist protect himself from radiation while this radioactive material is assembled and before it has been spread out?

  • Although you see pictures of “green activists”, wearing white suit with breathing apparatus, these very large amounts of radioactive material must be handled by remote control behind a wall of lead.
  • The white suit seen in many images is completely ineffective against radiation, but may give (false) credibility.
  • Do not forget that it is assumed that this radioactive material should be sufficient to kill “countless people” and that it will be necessary to get hold of something that is far beyond a mere bagatelle.

A realistic “dirty bomb”, that is not known to have been tried, is something quite different:
It is a ‘ordinary nuclear bomb’ that is surrounded by a second material, e.g. cobalt, that will be radioactive by taking up some of the neutrons that are left over from the explosion of the nuclear bomb.

But even this will not be enough to make a “Radioactive Tsunami”.
I wonder if we should leave all further talk about a dirty bomb to the professional horror prophets who ignore the realities, but uses the subject to spread fear.
More: See
Radiation and cancer.
Greenpeace’s credibility is a myth.
And if you are not tired, then:
Check the facts.

Greetings from Thorkil Søe

If you, my unknown reader, have relevant additions, modifications or factually reasoned objections, I ask you to write to me at

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About influence from radiation.


From nuclear bombs to knowledge and dogma

Long before we knew anything about radioactivity and radiation, energetic “health-enthusiasts” visited baths, which later turned out to be with high concentrations of radon.
Radioactive WaterOf course, the impact is not known.

Around 1915 radioactive water became the fashion as a cure against all sorts of diseases.

The pendulum swung the other way when some wealthy enthusiasts overdosed and died a horrible death.

After the nuclear bomb attacks in Japan, we began to get some factual knowledge about the effects of ionizing (radioactive) radiation.
Quickly the following was identified:
– – – Lethal dose is about 3000 mSv
– – – The death proces could be very long and painful.
– – – The healing of burns was strongly inhibited.
– – – Some children, who had been irradiated during pregnancy, showed
– – – serious birth defects.

Before long flourished an understandable fear of everything just containing the word “nuclear” or “radiation”.

Since we did not have sufficient knowledge about the effects of lower doses of ionizing radiation, it was natural to assume that no matter how little, then it is harmful.
So you were hopefully on the safe side.

Harm was thus calculated from the LNT hypothesis.

lnt-radiationOr more precisely: We had gained reasonable good information on the adverse effects of large doses and drew a straight line between this and the zero point, which of course was no impact – no damage.
This assumption makes it possible to “calculate” the number of future deaths in greater populations, who have been exposed to low load of radiation.
At times these “calculations” gave completely absurd results.

A humorous, but strictly factual, assessment is  found here:

This time the pendulum came so far out that any talk of anything else was silenced.


As time went on, we got new information. However, it was largely ignored:

  • Against all expectations, it turned out that children born to parents who had been exposed to even very strong irradiation had no more birth defects than the normal population.
  • Populations who for generations had lived in areas with high natural radiation, had no more cases of cancer.
    It gave rise to the term “The Rasmar Paradox”.
  • In 2006 and later in 2015 we can se how the animals who had taken over the forbidden zone at Chernobyl, live successfully and even had fewer cases of cancer than elsewhere.

Radon and Cancer

It is found that there is a NEGATIVE correlation between radon and cancer in the United States.

This, and much more, shows that moderate exposure to ionizing radiation is not harmful. Probably  it acts like a vaccination against cancer.


When the survivors of the nuclear bomb attacks begin to grow old, more information came to light.

  • Thus, it was discovered that people who had been exposed to 500 mSv or less, had no shorter life span than normal population.
    (500 mSv will cause minor symptoms of acute radiation sickness and is more than 100 times than what one would normally accept.)
  • Individuals who barely survived the acute radiation sickness, on the other hand, had an average life span, which was three years less than the general population.
    Reference and a little more: see here.
  • It became easy to see that the original asumption (LNT) was a wild goose chase.

Regardless of this, the doomsayers continues to explain that we need to keep us far from everything with nuclear:

  • The accident at the Chernobyl was, unjustifiably, touted to show that all nuclear power is dangerous.
    (Strictly it may be argued that this accident showed that even a very serious accident at a completely irresponsible reactor did not cause the often trumpeted enormous damage.)
  • Natural Radiation EU

  • After the tsunami and the accident at Fukushima the politicians went into panic and set unrealistically low limits for permissible radiation.
    So low that we soon have to believe that the Danish island Bornholm should be evacuated and the residents of Helinski and other sites have long overdue died.
  • Especially in Germany it is preferred to have pollution and high cost. Just to get rid of nuclear power.

One wonders, of course: Why can this unfounded fear close of for a logic assessment?
I dare to think that some of the answer can be found below:

  • The business model for the “green organizations” is to appear as those who protect us from danger.
    If a real danger can not be found, then radiation and nuclear power will be seen as an obvious candidate.
    This is easily seen if the attentive reader tries to study sites, especially from Greenpeace.
  • The old scaremongering has been waged for so long, so intensely and so skillfully that almost all journalists and politicians can not imagine anything else.
    Or they do not dare say anything else.
  • At many universities it unfortunately applies that you should ‘just’ write something about something and get it published.
    Or give room for another at the next ’round of sackings’.
    It is obviously unwise to ‘pee against the wind’.
    So better continue to make something out of nothing.
  • Unfortunately the same applies for many journalists.
  • It will be an economic disaster for Greenpeace and others if they should “go back” and recognize that some of what they have been fighting against, anyway, is not dangerous.
  • Of course it will be a political death sentence for a politician if he can be accused of exposing people to danger.
    Better to howl with the wolves you are among.

But no matter what, so in “the West”, we continue to run out of an expensive astray.