Personal Space

“Science Advice in a Crisis” – within the context of the Fukushima Nuclear incident

Professor Sir John Beddington, the UK’s Government Chief Scientific Adviser, gave a talk in Tokyo last month within the context of the Fukushima Nuclear Incident saga. The talk is long (and I skipped the Q&A part), but quite informative. Two take-home message I got from this are: (i) The UK government has been running numerical models using worst-case scenarios for the purpose of evaluating risks for the UK Citizens living in Japan; and (ii) they have concluded that there is no need for advising the UK citizens to evacuate the greater Tokyo region at this point.

I do think about the risks and benefits of taking my kids to Tokyo next month. I had already decided the benefits far outweigh the risks. But this talk made me feel better. I mean, it is nice to have someone else quantifying the risks for me.

ETA: The slides can be found here. The “Saru mo kikara ochiru” slide is intact in this one. –> http://ukinjapan.fco.gov.uk/resources/en/pdf/13756019/beddington-presentation-300511

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