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Keywords:

  • Radioactive particles;
  • Environmental impact;
  • Nuclear power plants;
  • Accidents

Abstract

The accident at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, precipitated by the devastating earthquake and subsequent tsunami that struck the northeastern coast of Japan in March 2011, has raised concerns about the fate of radioactive particles released into the environment. Radioactive particles with different composition, size, shape, structures, and colors have been identified throughout the world in different biotic and abiotic media. This article briefly summarizes what is currently understood about the fate of, and risks posed by, these materials in the environment. Integr Environ Assess Manag 2011;7:362–364. © 2011 SETAC