Soil fertility remains low due to removal of radioactive soils
March 8, 2021 – March 11, 2021 will be the 10th anniversary of the earthquake and tsunami that caused the meltdown of the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant. The March 7thSustainable, Secure Food Blog explores how the accident is affecting today’s farming in the area.
According to blogger Miwa Yashima Matsushima, “The soils of the area were contaminated with radioactive Cesium. This radioactive Cesium has a half-life of thirty years. This means that it will take 30 years for half of the Cesium-137 to lose its radioactivity and turn into the safer form of barium. Unfortunately, if food were grown in that soil contaminated with radioactive Cesium, the food would also be contaminated with radioactive Cesium.”
While contaminated surface soils were removed and clean soil was added, the soil fertility remains poor. One farmer saw total carbon amount in his soil decreased by 75%. Increasing soil organic matter is a must when it comes to fixing the soil. Some farmers use manure, but the availability of livestock in the area is low.
Matsushima’s team conducted experiments with green manure and chemical fertilizer to look for more solutions to fix the soil. To learn more, read the entire blog: https://sustainable-secure-food-blog.com/2021/03/07/what-are-the-long-term-effects-of-the-fukushima-disaster-on-local-agronomy/
About us: This blog is sponsored and written by members of the American Society of Agronomy and Crop Science Society of America. Our members are researchers and trained, certified professionals in the areas of growing our world’s food supply while protecting our environment. They work at universities, government research facilities, and private businesses across the United States and the world.
The American Society of Agronomy is an international scientific and professional society with its headquarters in Madison, WI. Our members are researchers and trained, certified professionals in the areas of growing our world’s food supply, while protecting our environment. We work at universities, government research facilities and private businesses across the United States and the world.