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Pu, Genome Sizes
Amphibian Decimations
and Human Extinction

[These are short excerpts from Charles L. Hyder's book, Human Survival On A Plutonium-Contaminated Planet]

Our future is worth saving; that's what the WIPP-free World is all about: Saving Our Future! All of our futures! The WIPPu must not be implanted in the earth, Period! Not anymore. Then our window to that future will stay open. To keep it open, we must persuade the World's other nuclear powers to keep all Pu 100% contained and under active, direct human control.

The Pu already released into the atmosphere during "Trinity," Nagasaki, and hundreds of other Pu-bomb "tests" has been falling out of the atmosphere slowly, worldwide since the 1945-1970's test period. According to Martell, to date, about 12% (~1/8) of the total atmospheric Pu has returned to the surface. I estimate 35% or more. There the fallout Pu is accumulating in ponds, lakes, and the oceans, moving into the living species there; and concentrating up the webbed food pyramids, primarily into the large top predators. Los Alamos, etc. can provide Pu data on exposure of plants and animals and on Pu concentrations in living and dead species.

So we must track top predator populations worldwide for signs of extraordinary mutations, extinctions or morbidity. For the last ten years+ amphibian populations have been decimated worldwide. They have exhibited unprecedented mutations, morbidity and extinctions. Since these amphibians' symptoms are due to the global Pu fallout, Lookout!

The Unique "Vulnerability" of Amphibia to Radioactive Insult

There has been a natural global conspiracy against amphibia. First, Figure 1 shows that they have by far the largest genomes (the genetic matter per cell) in the animal kingdom (most Targets per cell). They are predators (they eat insects, spiders, worms, snails, etc.). They have a one year population doubling time (along with fish, birds, reptiles, most mammals, and plants) that allows their populations to exhibit many mutations promptly. Human populations would take 20 yrs. or more to exhibit similar effects after genetic damage has occurred.

Combine these with an ever-increasing accumulation of fallout Pu, etc. on the surface of the earth, plus the topographic focusing of that dispersed Pu from high watersheds into lower lakes, ponds, marshes, swamps, estuaries where amphibia thrive (and river deltas and continental shelves) and where Pu concentrations in many muds & silts exceed 1000 times the original fallout concentrations of Pu, etc. in the high watersheds.

Then there is a one-way transfer of Pu from muds into bioforms where it accumulates. Finally, Pu is again focussed up the food webs into intermediate predators (amphibia, small fish and birds, snakes & lizards) and into the top predators (large fish, large squid, sperm whale, polar bear, large reptiles, orca, other large carnivorous mammals, Eskimos, large birds, and scavengers) of the earth's food webs.

Thus there are four independent mechanisms that focus atmospheric Pu into amphibia et al.:

(1) Fallout,
(2) topographic,
(3) mud-to-biologic, &
(4) up food pyramids; all compounded by their large genomes (G) and their rapid population doubling rates. These make amphibia the first predictably manifest victims of increasingly radioactive environments. The above discussion is an example of how large local variations in C(Pu) can occur in global distributions of Pu.

The rest of this chapter is very important, mathematical, quantitative and compelling. If math puts you off, pass the math of this chapter (actually, there are only two pages of equations, pp. 22 & 23) and go on to p. 25. I'll be repeating the important, inescapable conclusions throughout the rest of the book, and throughout the rest of my life; so you won't miss much, if you do skip the math.

A List of Eight 
Independent WIPPu Release Mechanisms 
with Time Scales Less than EPA's 10,000 Years

Time Scale                          WIPPu Release Mechanisms

0 to 30 years (Immediate)   WIPPu Releases during Transport Accidents
0 -on-                      Radioactive Pu-Brine Geyser up Shafts
50 to 100 years             Rustler Aquifer penetrates WIPP Shaft Plugs
100 to 200 years            Percolations through WIPP Karst
200 to 300 years            RH/Pu Slow Salt Volcano
300 to 10,000 years         Wet, Warm Rock Salt Dynamics
500 to 3,000 years          The WIPP "Brecia Pipe" Formation
5,000 to 10,000 years       The Onset of the 25,000-year Wet Cycle
This list is not complete. Other mechanisms will introduce WIPPu into the Biosphere before 10,000 years are up.

Who else wants to bet that none of these WIPPu Release Mechanisms will operate at any time during the first 10,000 years of WIPP?

Where are prudence and reason in the DOE's plans for WIPPu?

WIPPu and Its Hydrological Destiny -- 10,000 A.D. to 288,000 A.D.: The Golfo de Mexico; The Gulf Stream The North Atlantic and Arctic Oceans and Western Europe Any one of a dozen mechanism could release WIPPu into the earth's biosphere during the next 10, 100, 1000 and/or 3000 years. If none of these occurred in 5000 years, the Wet Half of the 50,000 Delaware Basin Hydrological Cycle will have started, and it will endure for the next 20 to 30 thousand years. And that 50,000 year Cycle will repeat six times during the next 288,000 years. Thus the release of WIPPu into the Pecos River is certain! The large number of likely, short-term WIPPu release mechanisms tell us that WIPPu releases would start soon after WIPP opened (0 to 5000 years). But WIPPu releases into the Pecos River during the next 10,000 to 75,000 years are a virtual certainty. It's all a matter of information, statistics and luck.

As these WIPPu leaks occur, grow, synergize and accumulate, WIPPu will be building up first in Pecos silts and sandbars, particularly in lakes and ponds downstream from WIPP. These are the places where sensitive vertebrates (amphibians, carnivores, mammals) will first exhibit species' decimations due to WIPPu. These effects will be most noticeable in the amphibia and the carnivorous mammals (humans, etc.) that live in and around the Red Bluff Reservoir, Texas, 23 miles SSW of WIPP on the Pecos River (a natural for "before and after" studies of amphibia, etc., and WIPPu.

This same scenario will play years later along the lower Rio Grande River to the Golfo de Mexico. These two riparian systems are the main regions where WIPPu will impact fresh water and dry land species like amphibia, coyotes, bobcats, birds, reptiles, fish, people.

WIPPu will be frequently scoured from the Pecos and Rio Grande into the western parts of the Golfo de Mexico, where it will accumulate for many hundreds of thousands of years. The huge, Pu- free Mississippi River flows into the northern Gulf and keeps WIPPu in the northwestern and southern parts of the Golfo de Mexico. In 5000 to 288,000 years, the Gulf Stream will flow into the Gulf from the south through the Yucatan Channel west of Cuba, pick up some WIPPu, then turn east and exit the Gulf through the Straits of Florida into the western North Atlantic Ocean. Thus, WIPPu releases will accumulate over millennia in the Golfo de Mexico, which will become the source of WIPPu for the Gulf Stream, the North Atlantic Ocean, the connected southern Arctic ocean, and northwestern Europe, Iceland and southern Greenland. This will kill all of the carnivorous vertebrates in the Golfo de Mexico or living off the Gulf food supplies.

The main marine contamination by WIPPu will be in a 10,000 mile band from the mouth of the Rio Grande (97⊘ W, 26⊘ N) to Novaya Zemlya (60⊘ E, 75⊘ N) between the Barents and the Kara Seas. Initially, the western and northern edge of that band is the east coast of the U.S. and Newfoundland, the east coast of southern Greenland, Iceland, the Svalbard Islands and Franz Josef Land. That band is about 1000 miles wide from North Florida to Norway. The eastern edge of WIPPu contamination in the North Atlantic starts out near the eastern edge of the Gulf Stream and includes many of the best fishing grounds that are in the band. But over the many thousands of years that will follow, the WIPPu will spread east and south to contaminate the entire Atlantic Ocean north of 16⊘ N. This distribution of WIPPu threatens all carnivorous populations living in and around the North Atlantic ocean (primarily in the Golfo de Mexico, U.S., Canada, Greenland, and Iceland, and along the main Gulf Stream).

from Human Survival
On A Plutonium-Contaminated Planet
© 1998, Charles L. Hyder, Ph.D.

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