Radioactive Material Found in Illinois

Jim Anderson

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (IRN) – Radiation believed to be from the nuclear plant disaster in Japan has been detected in Illinois.

The radioactive iodine similar to what was released in Japan was found in a grass clipping in the Joliet area by the Radiological Assessment Field Team, which regularly checks on vegetation, air, milk and eggs to determine if any radiation is leaking from Illinois’ nuclear reactors.

In this case, the grass clippings were taken as part of a drill for the emergency plan at the Dresden nuclear power plant.

Once that grass sample tested positive for radioactive iodine, an air sample in Springfield was taken, which also detected the radioactive material.

Patti Thompson of the Illinois Emergency Management Agency says the levels are low: The amount of radiation would have to be 200,000 greater than what was detected to meet the regulatory limit for emission from a nuclear power plant.

Nevertheless, the state will now conduct more tests in other parts of the state.

Copyright Illinois Radio Network

  • derrick

    Now we are going to blame Japan for everything?

    • tom

      Per nuclear physicists: There is NO safe levels of radiation exposure; low levels over time is harmful. I would avoid any diary products from affected areas.

      • glowinthedark

        Drink up folks, the end is near.

      • dumb guy

        I’ve never kept a diary, so I guess I’m not affected?

      • Wexpat Guero

        dumb…. as a rock you are. Nuclear physicists say that there is a beneficial amount of ionizing radiation. Greenies and other people who feel, rather than think, go so far as to immerse themselves in pools of radium, and to the bottom of mine-shafts to breath the healing radon gas. Go figure. But nuclear physicists agree that there are also beneficial effects.

        Twit-noise aside, Tom, is it just me, or is detecting something which is 200000 times below a level of concern, not really information at all.

    • Bob Roberts

      Why not? After all, whatever isn’t Obama’s fault is Japan’s fault – doncha know?

    • d gault


    • bloodaxe


    • jimballs

      No. Blame Sarah Palin

      • hottie

        Sarah Palin is hot.

      • joemahma


    • Cody

      nooooo, it’s Bush’s fault!

    • Discerning

      Ron Paul wouldn’t stand in the same room as Sarah Palin.

      • Hunsaker

        I’ll stand with both of them!

    • NoPrisoners

      Correction: Sarah Palin wouldn’t be caught in the same room as Ron Paul.

    • Henry Wener

      you are right, radiation is repeased from power planfs using coal and gas. Chem 101

      • MotorCitySarge


      • RonnieReagan

        It’s all about the LEVELS of radiation, you fool. It’s important that we get these periodic baselines because it will help us better evaluate the situation as things progress. Step back and look at the BIG PICTURE like those of us working on this project. Moron.

      • Fanny Forbes Franklen

        Power plants won’t melt down though … like these reactors that ring around Chicago and are like the ones in Japan.

        • Dresden 2, Morris, Illinois, 1970, GE 3
        • Dresden 3, Morris, Illinois, 1971, GE 3.
        • Quad Cities 1, Cordova, Illinois, 1972, GE 3.
        • Quad Cities 2, Moline, Illinois, 1972, GE 3..
        • LaSalle 1, Marseilles, Illinois, 1982, GE 5, Mark II.
        • LaSalle 2, Marseilles, Illinois, 1983, GE 5, Mark II.


      • Don't Panic

        Iodine 131 is only produced by nuclear fission. Nuclear Science 101.

      • George Smith

        @Fanny Forbes Franklen

        There is not and never has been a reactor in Moline, Illinois. Quad Cities 2 is located near Cordova, Illinois, next to Quad Cities 1, or approximately 150 miles west of Chicago, Illinois.

        The Quad Cities installation is located by the Mississippi River, which is completely incapable of producing a tsunami of any kind. The nuclear power plant in Japan successfully survived a 9.0 earthquake. Had there been no tsunami, or had the tsunami been a bit smaller, the power plant in Japan would be completely operational now and safely generating power.

        The other Illinois locations you mention are not subject to tsunamis either. In addition, none of the reactor locations you cite is subject to any significant seismic risk. Finally, if you took radiation readings around these plants you would find them lower than readings near a typical coal fired generating plant.

        In summary, the nuclear plant in Japan survived a 9.0 earthquake, but the tsunami wall was just a bit too short, allowing the emergency generator to be swamped and rendered inoperative. Nuclear power plants located in Illinois and most of the rest of the United States are not subject to any of these extremely unusual conditions which caused the failure of the plant in Japan only because they occurred in combination.

        In general, nuclear power plants in the United States have been and remain quite safe.

      • S. Britchky

        The reactors didn’t melt down in Japan, either, Fanny Forbes Franklen, until they were hit by a thousand-year earthquake and tsunami. How much radiation and other pollution will emerge from coal-fired plants during that thousand years? Come on — figure it out. You almost took a science course in school, didntcha?

      • Gibbs Bentley

        Read some reality government paid shills.

        The General Electric-designed nuclear reactors involved in the Japanese emergency are very similar to 23 reactors in use in the United States, according to Nuclear Regulatory Commission records.

        The NRC database of nuclear power plants shows that 23 of the 104 nuclear plants in the U.S. are GE boiling-water reactors with GE’s Mark I systems for containing radioactivity, the same containment system used by the reactors in trouble at the Fukushima Dai-ichi plant. The U.S. reactors are in Alabama, Georgia, Illinois, Iowa, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Nebraska, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania and Vermont.

      • detter

        Grow your marijuana indoors. Don’t eat the soil, and grass. lol

    • SamIamTwo

      Gotta go someday. I’m drinking radiated milk today in WA state. Maybe it will cure something or slow down some bad cancer cells…who knows…

    • Dr. Bombay

      Illinois is by far the most nuclear state in the United States. We have been plagued by a series of firsts and mosts …

    • dirac


      Illinois is by far the most nuclear state in the United States. We have been plagued by a series of firsts and mosts …

    • sjkflm

      This might help out for what ever reason? Go here and look (will try to get this url posted) look at the main pics and films are available. Hope this helps.

    • earl

      we don’t have to asign blame, they are already guilty.

    • KingArthur

      I wondered why my wife was glowing so much lately

  • IEMA assures lawmakers of safety of Illinois’ nuclear power plants – Illinois Statehouse News |

    […] from Japan found in Will CountyChicago Sun-TimesTrace radiation found near JolietQuad City TimesRadioactive Material Found in IllinoisKMOX.comall 48 news […]

  • Terrie

    If the shoe fits…

  • Howard Stern

    Hmm… did the radioactive iodine have slanty eyes?

    • tom

      Perhaps b/c your viewing them thru slanty eyes….

  • glaw

    due to the half life of the isotope, there is no I-131 in the environment, except for what was created through fission fragments… thats also why U-235 is so rare, it has decayed since the beginning, and there is little occurring in natural uranium (.7%). So yes, the I-131 being detected WAS created in Japan.

    • Ma

      And we all need to stay on top of this issue. It’s not going away.

      Every day that the radiation spews from Japan’s power plants, it can be carried by the jet stream winds to the United States if the winds are right.

      This is a good Austrian site that shows animated Japan disbursement maps: (go under “Neue Informationen” to find animated maps”)

      And Berkeley is doing its own radiation monitoring of milk, water and air in California:

      • Jimballs

        Does anyone really care about California?

      • diane

        We already know there must be something wrong with the water or air in Berserkly.

      • hatchie

        very good Diane. Berserkly is where that freak professor is tha flat out lied about his “so called” results” on global warming.

      • WakeUp

        Since the winds blow from California to the east, which means they blow over Illinois, what California is finding out IS IMPORTANT to Illinois and every other state!

  • jim

    Is it possible that the radiation could cleanse the souls of corrupt illinois elected officials and bring change to illinois?

    • tom

      Fat chance….nothing short of the Second Coming would make a dent….just look at the president we wound up with in Barry Soetoro, the Indonesian citizen illegal alien so-called president….

    • Sam

      I am with you on that one.

    • neocon57

      not a bleeping chance!

    • jay

      Oh PULEase……………………!!!
      “Nothing” will ever change the corrupt politicians

    • glowinthedark

      You mean the corrupt, self serving pigs in Illinois AND Washington? Not a snowballs chance in hell that they will EVER do what us poor working slobs want.

    • just one

      Its too soon to be joking about this

      • Bobbert

        …no it isn’t…

  • kdetreaux

    The Iodine is not the big news. The big news is that on every news site, you will see shills for the nuclear industry either minimizing the content of the post or news story, arguing with the poster(s), or posting absolutely ridiculous follow ups.T his phenomena is happing all over the web right now. GE designed five of the reactors and built three. They stand to lose billions in future business if public sentiment turns against them so they pay newsboard shills to create havoc. The big news, is there is no real raw news anymore.

    • Tawanda The Avenger

      I have noticed that. The shill posts by the industry seems to have the same theme: nuclear energy is safe and ridiculing anyone who disagrees.

      Nuclear energy safe ? Sure it is, except when something goes horribly wrong.

      • J

        This is 100% correct. Since the begging of this disaster there has been a disgustingly transparent attempt to influence public opinion on nuclear power via (obviously biased–payed off reporters?) articles and posts on forums and news sites. I saw one article that actually claimed wind farms have killed more people than Chernobyl–BS! This is so painfully transparent. *and as a side note. Notice how these articles often times try to tie in wind, solar, etc., and say it’s not adequate for our needs. Interesting.*

        Machio Kaku, on day 1, said “this cold be a Chernobyl in the making.” He was ridiculed and called stupid. Some anonymous poster said that Kaku has clearly lost all credibility. Another poster repeatedly said: “SHAME. SHAME. SHAME ON YOU [for this nonsense].” Again, BS.

        The public (voters) will decide what they like. And the people with interests in nuclear energy trying to persuade us through these obvious methods can only backfire.

      • Springer Rider

        If you sample an air-conditioner filter, any day of the year, it will exceed the minimum limit for activity. that being 5×10-10 micro-ci/ml. That is normal from naturally occurring decay products from radon. Get a clue before you start calling people shills.

    • Jeff B

      kdetreaux, Put your tin foil hat back on. Just because some people are educated about radiation doesn’t mean they are part of some conspiracy.

      I’m not in favor of building any new nuclear plants and hope the rest of the world agrees. But this level of radiation reported in the article is NOT news. This level of radiation is something like 5,000 times less than the radiation from potassium in a banana. Its less radiation than standing next to another person. Yes, we are all slightly radioactive, and sleeping next to someone exposes you to more radiation than what is reported in this article. That’s the truth.

  • Mark

    Why is this paragraph the last paragraph? Just trying to create fear?
    “Patti Thompson of the Illinois Emergency Management Agency says the levels are low: The amount of radiation would have to be 200,000 greater than what was detected to meet the regulatory limit for emission from a nuclear power plant.”

    the level was 200,000 times LESS than the regulatory limit. 200,000 times less than the legal limit is not low, is super, super, super, super, super, super, super, super, super, super, super, super, super, super LOW.

  • bill

    george bush is to blame!!!

    • tom

      No, Ann Coulter is b/c she declared that nuclear radiation is ‘nutritiious’ for us; she should then move and live in the Fukachima reactors then. She has to date refused to accept Alex Jones all-expense paid trip thru his site at:

      I detect great hypocrisy in her voice…what a vile cruel comment.

      • Ron

        Fukushima, idiot.

    • Sam

      And don’t forget Fox news and Halliburton!

  • JA

    I blame Ben Franklin.

    • Htos1

      Well,then,technically it’s Enrico Fermi’s fault.

      • just one

        that damn issac newton, or do we blame aristotle?

      • Pam Scherr Rein

        Techinally it is madam curries fault she discovered radatition

  • Mary Ann Jordan

    Okay am I the only one that this doesn’t add up for. Doesn’t it say there are NUCLEAR reactors in ILLINOIS So it seems to me logic would explain the radioactive materials are MORE likely to have come from ILLINOIS and not across the world from Japan. Silly study at best.

    • Jason

      That may be how it SEEMS to you. But that would only point out your ignorance of the science involved here. Iodine-131 is spewing from Japan and diffusing throughout the northern hemisphere. Right now in the US, it is at levels that are barely detectable. But to say that it is not from Japan really does just show your complete ignorance of the facts. Look at the real data. It speaks for itself. You will not find a nuclear expert that would even consider denying that this if from Japan.

      • David Hollaz

        Is there really a need to attack Mary Ann personally?? If the facts are really on your side, you would not need to preface your remarks with, “that just points out your ignorance.” Since you resort first to an ad hominem attack, you seem not to be so sure the facts really are on your side after all.

      • Mike

        You like to say “spewing” a lot don’t you?

      • Brent

        Jason, why did you call her ignorant then not give a single fACT proving her wrong. I don’t know a lot about the science involved but I’d bet ur not a nuclear scientist either. Just because Japan is leaking nuclear material that automatically means every bit of nuclear radiation found is from them? Are u saying its impossible ANY could be leaking from our own reactors/ if it is truely impossible why even test? Sorry man, ur complete lack of facts or REAL arguments of any kind shows everyone your ignorance. Someone please post some real facts telling us why Japan is the only place this could have come from.

    • Htos1

      There’s a reason it’s acalled “fallout”.It “falls” out of the sky rapidly,it’s particled that are EXREMELY densely heavy,regardless of their size.

  • ted

    Instead of ‘flagellating’ this morning, maybe you should have picked up a dictionary so you didn’t embarass yourself by using the wrong word.

    Must have been brain flatulence.

  • boB

    No one ever questions HOW DO THEY KNOW IT IS FROM JAPAN? We are just being more vigilent now in checking for radiation, so it’s possible it’s from any number of things. Heck, every plane that lands is positive for radiation because of traveling at 35,000 feet.

    • Bill

      Actually, you can take a sample, use a mass spectrometer, and get the spectral response curve of the I -131 and CS -137 and match it exactly…. EXCEPT WE DO NOT KNOW IF THIS WAS DONE. So your point is still valid.

      • Scott

        boB – Jets are not “positive for radiation”. That may be English, but it doesn’t mean anything. Jets are exposed to radiation. The jets themselves, and the people onboard, are exposed to a dose of radiation. It is conceivable that they could pick up radioactive contamination, but it is unlikely.

        Htos1 – a mass spectrometer is not something your everyday person owns. They are quite expensive.

        Regardless, based on current events, any I-131 found these days is most likely from Japan.

      • Htos1

        Can the regular person obtain one that connects to a Mac or PC?I would post readings all with video,

  • Tim

    “Patti Thompson of the Illinois Emergency Management Agency says the levels are low: The amount of radiation would have to be 200,000 greater than what was detected to meet the regulatory limit for emission from a nuclear power plant.”

    It seems like anything that needs to be 200,000x greater to REACH a regulatory limit is really small. Why is this even reported?

    • Tony

      To scare people into turning against Nuclear energy, there’s definitely an agenda here.

      • just one

        there may be some flame faning but… Invisible cancer accelerating particles in the air water and food.. which you have to eat, you have to drink if youre in the affected region unless you want to be seen really wacky. People expect you to just relax eat tainted food , breath tainted air with no explanation to the public about exactly what it means to us, i skipped physics in school. I sorta understand radioactive decay and quantum mechanics, but do expect us to not be scared?This was supposed to be worst case scenarios stuff

  • Frank

    You are a dumb ass.

  • roy wilt jr

    Are you kidding me. You folks can’t even identify a registered voter nor do you want to. Now you claim to be able to trace radiation to a specific source. REALLY????The most corrupt state in the Union claiming to have unique scientific knowlege??? Come on now.
    As the first President from Illonois said, “you can fool some of the people some of the time…” But not all of us are stupid enough to believe this.

    • FlyTom

      Not sure who “you people” are, but radiation can be tracked to it’s source via signatures…It is not the same from plant to plant. It is not a ‘unique scientific knowledge’, but rather a well known scientific fact. You need an education.

  • Joe

    I beleive you are referring to Abraham Lincoln, Roy, who was from Kentucky. Ronald Reagan is the only president from Illinois.

    • Tony

      He was born in Kentucky but his home was Illinois…stop being a semantical wise ass.

  • Bill

    THis does NOT even merit a news story… however, I wonder if you could sell potassium Iodide tablets to people gullible enough to worry about it. So, on second thought, the news story is the best marketing possible ! (mark up the cost at least 1000 % on those tablets)

  • Tom

    Always thought it would be neat to glow in the dark.

    • Sam

      It’s easy to do. Vodka, bleach and a splash of cranberry. Works every time.

  • Ma

    Stay educated on this issue. It’s not going away.

    Every day that radiation spews from Japan’s power plants, the jet stream flowing east can carry it to the United States. Learn to read wind maps.

    Here is a good Austrian site that shows Japan radiation disbursement maps: (go under “Neue Informationen” to find animated maps”)

    And Berkeley is doing its own radiation monitoring of milk, water and air in California:

    It wasn’t just Iodine-131 found in the United States. Cesium 137 has also been found.

  • Tony

    God I was hoping for some self-abuse related sarcasm. I was interested… until the dog. That’s when I knew it. Melvin is an idiot.

  • Jah Love

    Ron Paul loves this country and the freedoms guaranteed in the Constitution. Anyone against Ron Paul supports Big Govt Tyrany. Long Live the Republic!!

    • he2

      Phasers on stun…

      • Sam


  • seeker_n

    Grass Clippings? Duh, I live in Iowa (next door to Illinois) and there is no grass to clip here. It’s still dormant, so where is this contaminated grass? In a greenhouse?

    • LRC

      Finally, someone asks the question…I live in PA, not much growing here…Oh wait, maybe the fall-out is causing my grass not to grow…or maybe it’s the stupid snow.

    • Moni

      I’m in Illinois and we have tons of grass – neighbors have already been mowing

      • seeker_n

        Excuse me Moni but we’re not talking about the kind of grass that you’ve obviously been smoking !

  • joan driscoll

    If the Maya are correct, 2012 is either going to be the beginning or the end. Can’t fault them for taking a stand….on both sides to boot. Let’s just sit back and relax. None of us knows what tomorrow may hold, no matter what the prophets say.

  • cojonius maximus

    We are surrounded by idiots….let’s hava a show of hands….how many out there born between 1950-1962?

    During that time, multiple airborne A and H bombs were detonated…aside from Godzilla movies NOTHING HAPPENED

    Let us get a bit of perspective…the Japan crisis is tragic it is not apocalyptic for Japan, let alone Will County Illinois

    The biggest danger is that environmental morons will destroy the Nuclear Energy industry in the USA asn make us more dependent on Oil

    The morons that push wind and solar as immediate alternatives are MORONS or VARMINTS …soon they will offer you big rock candy mountain acerage with cigarette trees and hens that lay soft bolied eggs…

    Of course this is the nation that elected a Kenyan Muslim Socialist (best case scenario there ) as President…

    We believed him…we will obviously believe anything

    • conservativemom

      I take it you mean the bombs we detonated out in the desert that gave John Wayne and the other actors in those westerns cancer? Yup, nothing happened.

      Iodine is good for your thyroid anyway. Everyone should be taking 150 mcg of it everyday via normal vitamins, so what’s the big deal in being safe rather than sorry?

      • Djoser

        I guess it had nothing to do with the 2 pack a day cigs, the booze, 5 pounds of beef/day and all the other free radicals floating around this great planet. Freaking libs are indeed libtarted.

    • Sam

      Lets make a trade with the Japanese! We’ll take all their radioactive waste and they take Obama. We’ll be much safer.

    • Shallel

      Airborne fission and fusion bombs use up their nuclear fuel, and if far enough away from the ground, do not bombard regular materials with neutrons and cause radioactive isotopes in these materials. I’m not saying they’re clean, and carbon in the atmosphere can become C14, but a reactor leaves so many terribly dangerous isotopes due to the various pathways of nuclear decay, and these are not spent in an explosion, since super-criticality cannot be achieved in a reactor.

      There will be an exclusion zone for hundreds of years, this is worse than Chernobyl by far.

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