Nuclear labor issues
Nuclear labor issues exist within the international nuclear power industry and the nuclear weapons production sector worldwide, impacting upon the lives and health of laborers, itinerant workers and their families.
A subculture of frequently undocumented workers do the dirty, difficult, and potentially dangerous work shunned by regular employees. They are called in the vernacular, Nuclear Nomads, Bio-Robots, Lumnizers, Glow Boys, Radium Girls, the Fukushima 50, Liquidators, Atomic Gypsies, Gamma Sponges, Nuclear Gypsies, Genpatsu Gypsies, Nuclear Samurai and Jumpers. When they exceed their allowable radiation exposure limit at a specific facility, they often migrate to a different nuclear facility. The industry implicitly accepts this conduct as it can not operate without these practices. The World Nuclear Association states that the transient workforce of "nuclear gypsies" - casual workers employed by subcontractors has been "part of the nuclear scene for at least four decades."
Existent labor laws protecting worker’s health rights are not properly enforced. Records are required to be kept, but frequently they are not. Some personnel were not properly trained resulting in their own exposure to toxic amounts of radiation. At several facilities there are ongoing failures to perform required radiological screenings or to implement corrective actions.
Many questions regarding these nuclear worker conditions go unanswered, and with the exception of a few whistleblowers, the vast majority of laborers - unseen, underpaid, overworked and exploited, have few incentives to share their stories. The median annual wage for hazardous radioactive materials removal workers, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics is $37,590 in the U.S - $18 per hour. A 15-country collaborative cohort study of cancer risks due to exposure to low-dose ionizing radiation, involving 407,391 nuclear industry workers showed significant increase in cancer mortality. The study evaluated 31 types of cancers, primary and secondary.
- 1 Uranium mining and milling
- 2 Asian nuclear industry
- 3 European nuclear industry
- 4 American nuclear industry
- 4.1 Nuclear weapons production workers
- 4.2 Nuclear weapons production facilities
- 4.2.1 Fernald Feed Plant – Ohio, USA
- 4.2.2 Hanford Nuclear Reservation – Washington, USA
- 4.2.3 Idaho National Laboratory – Idaho, USA
- 4.2.4 Los Alamos National Laboratories – New Mexico, USA
- 4.2.5 Oak Ridge – Tennessee, USA
- 4.2.6 Pantex Plant – Texas, USA
- 4.2.7 Rocketdyne – California, USA
- 4.2.8 Rocky Flats Plant – Colorado, USA
- 4.3 Short-term workers
- 4.4 Divers
- 4.5 Radium workers
- 4.6 Shipyard workers
- 4.7 Commercial nuclear workers
- 5 The case of Karen Silkwood
- 6 Military workers and contractors
- 7 Waste storage
- 8 See also
- 9 References
- 10 External links
Uranium mining and milling
In 1942 thirty indigenous Dené men were recruited to mine uranium, locally known as "the money rock" for three dollars per day at the Port Radium mine. By 1998, 14 of these workers had died of lung, colon and kidney cancers, according to the North West Territorie's Cancer Registry. The Dené were not told of the hazards of mining uranium, and breathed radioactive dust, slept on the ore, and ate fish from the tailings ponds. Ottawa was the world's largest supplier of uranium at that time, and the United States the biggest buyer, according to declassified U.S. documents. In subsequent decades, thousands of Native miners were not warned of the risks.
Namibia's Rössing Uranium Mine is the longest-operating open-pit uranium mine, and one of the largest in the world. The company is owned and operated by Rio Tinto, one of the world's largest mining groups, and Rössing Uranium Limited. The uranium mill tailings dam has been leaking for a number of years, and on January 17, 2014, a catastrophic structural failure of a leach tank cased a major spill. The France-based laboratory, Commission de Recherche et d'Information Independentantes sur la Radioactivite (CRIIAD) reported elevated levels of radioactive materials in the area surrounding the mine.
There have been numerous reports published on labor and human rights conditions at the mine. Workers were not informed of the dangers of working with radioactive materials and the health effects thereof. The Director of Labor Resource and Research Institute (LaRRI), Hilma Shindondola-Mote, mine employees asserted that Rössing did not provide them with explanation of health problems from exposure to uranium.
At the open cut Kayelekera uranium mine near Karonga, Malawi (Africa), a mine employee, Khwima Phiri, was killed on July 20, 2013. He was struck in the chest and killed while inflating a wheel. There have been allegations of radiation-induced diseases among the mine workers and nearby residents. The Malawi government has been unable to verify these, stating that the absence of monitoring equipment. On June 19, 2011 a truck at the mine caught fire, killing the driver. On September 23, 2010, workers were ordered to work despite the fact that the mine could not provide them with dust masks to protect them against radioactive materials.
New Zealand and Australia
The American and British demand for large quantities of uranium to use in nuclear weapons initiated New Zealand's uranium survey during WWII. In 1944 in Wellington, geologists and physicists assembled two exploration teams to survey South Island, particularly the granite deposits and black beach sand areas. In 1945, Fiordland, Milford Sound, Nancy Sound and other locations were surveyed, resulting in the December 7, 1945 NZ Atomic Energy Act granting full ownership of any discovered radioactive elements. In 1955, a rich uranium deposit was discovered by prospectors Frederick Cassin and Charles Jacobsen. This uranium boom not only produced raw material, but radioactive kitsch consumer nic-nacs were displayed in shop and hotel windows to interest tourists. In the following years prospectors traveled through rainforests and other terrain with Geiger counters, jackhammers and drills. These workers were exposed to unsafe levels of radiation through exposure to and inhalation of dust. In Australia, uranium mining was no less unrestrained. At the Nabarlek, Rum Jungle, Hunter's Hill, Rockhole and Moline mines, gamma radiation exceeded safe levels by 50% causing chronic health problems for miners and workers.
United States of America
Between 1949 and 1989, over 4,000 uranium mines in the Four Corners region produced more than 225,000,000 tons of uranium ore. This activity affected a large number of Native American nations, including the Laguna, Navajo, Zuni, Southern Ute, Ute Mountain, Hopi, Acoma and other Pueblo cultures. Many of these peoples worked in the mines, mills and processing plants in New Mexico, Arizona, Utah and Colorado. These workers were not only poorly paid, they were seldom informed of dangers nor were they given appropriate protective gear. The government, mine owners, scientific, and health communities were all well aware of the hazards of working with radioactive materials at this time. Due to the Cold War demand for increasingly destructive and powerful nuclear weapons, these laborers were both exposed to and brought home large amounts of radiation in the form of dust on their clothing and skin. Epidemiological studies of the families of these workers have shown increased incidents of radiation-induced cancers, miscarriages, cleft palates and other birth defects. The extent of these genetic effects on indigenous populations and the extent of DNA damage remains to be resolved. Uranium mining on the Navajo reservation continues to be a disputed issue as former Navajo mine workers and their families continue to suffer from health problems.
Asian nuclear industry
- In March 1993 at India's Narora reactor an accident occurred in which two blades broke off a steam turbine leading to a hydrogen leak, hydrogen fire and oil fire. At this time India's Atomic Energy Commission and Department of Atomic Energy (DAE) were not required to "reveal the health record of workers" nor did the DAE "monitor the health of temporary workers" nor "reveal the quantity of radioactive substances released into the environment by accidents."
- In May, 2014, six contract workers were injured at the Koodankulam nuclear power plant in Tamil Nadu, India, and hospitalized for burns received during repair work. In March 2014, a contract worker was killed and two injured during the construction of a nuclear submarine at the ship building town of Visakhapatnam.
- Twenty two workers were exposed to radiation at the Wolsung nuclear power plant, near Seoul, North Korea on October 5, 1999, when 45 liters of heavy water leaked.
- On December 26, 2014, three workers at the new Shin Kori nuclear power plant died of a suspected nitrogen gas leak. The accident occurred after a series of threats by hackers claiming they can remotely control nuclear power plants.
Following a large earthquake and tsunami on March 11, 2011 three nuclear reactors melted-down at the TEPCO Fukushima Daiichi power station in Japan. Despite TEPCO's ongoing efforts to stabilize, decommission, decontaminate and contain the radioactive materials, many workers have been exposed to significant doses of radiation. Both skilled and unskilled laborers work on the extensive clean-up crew, many of those involved in the most dangerous work are on short contracts. These "nuclear gypsies" or "jumpers" are often recruited from day labor sites across Japan.
Contract labor in the nuclear industry is not new. Years prior to the Fukushima accident, the Los Angeles Times reported in 1999 that nearly 90% of Japanese nuclear power plant workers were subcontracted to perform the most hazardous jobs. Included in the report is the incident at the Tokaimura JCO Co. nuclear plant, 80 miles north of Tokyo, where 150 workers were exposed to radiation, including one fatality, based on the Japan Nuclear Safety Commission report. In 1999, the Los Angeles Times reported that nearly 90% of Japanese nuclear power plant workers were subcontracted to perform the most hazardous jobs. In 2010, the year before the Fukushima accident, eight-eight percent of Japan's nuclear workforce of 83,000 workers were contracted, not full-time workers. The Tokyo-based Citizens' Nuclear Information Center reported that temporary workers absorbed 16 times higher levels of radiation than regular TEPCO employees. Other sources cite higher dose levels and alleged worker abuse. The first responders to the accident, the "Fukushima 50" have refused to be photographed, as TEPCO and the Japanese government has not released their names and faces, they remain unknowable and forgotten. Keeping the cleanup crew fully staffed, 24 hours per day, on 12 hour shifts, rotating every three days is a physical and logistical challenge to an emergency that will sustain for decades during which an ongoing stream of workers is required. In a lecture given May 3, 2011 to the All Freeter's Union in Tokyo by the photographer, Kenji Higuchi, "The Truth of the Fukushima 50" he cites TEPCO's lack of responsible oversight, and is of the opinion that the Fukushima 50 are victims of unsafe working conditions, not heroes, as they are depicted in the media. The few workers who have come forward, such as Shingo Kanno, describe themselves as "nuclear samurai", helping to save Japan from the spread of radiation while doing menial labor at the Fukushima nuclear plant. Upon arriving onsite, some workers were told by their managers that the level of radiation was so high their annual exposure limit could be reached within an hour. The extent of the disaster has initiated searches for clean-up workers from other countries, including the U.S. Many clean-up workers at Fukushima have found that they are not eligible for free cancer screenings from TEPCO or the Japanese government. As of November, 2012 only 3.7 have been granted screenings, although many have been exposed to high levels of radiation, and all work in highly contaminated zones.
Japan's second largest construction company, Obayashi Corporation, was found to, perhaps illegally, assign homeless men from the Sendai train station to work as decontamination laborers at the crippled reactors. Several arrests were made of members of Japanese criminal syndicates, Yamaguchi-gumi, Inagawa-kai, and Sumiyoshi-sai, for arranging black-market labor recruitment operations for Obayashi. The day-labor gray markets in Tokyo and Osaka were also found to recruit homeless men, paying them $6 per hour after deductions for food and lodging. Other workers were paid as little as $10 per month after deductions. Some workers report they were simply left unpaid.
Among the temporary clean-up workers who have come forward, such as Tetsuya Hayashi, was told he would at Fukushima monitoring worker exposures for two weeks during the summer of 2012. Upon arriving at the disaster site, he was deployed to an area with extremely high radiation levels, rather than the monitoring station. Although Hayashi was provided with protective gear, he thinks the agency engaged in "bait and switch" approaches to recruitment. Later he accepted a second contract job from another agency at TEPCO's Fukushima Daiichi plant, working on spent fuel rod tanks. He reported that the new contracting agency only paid him 2/3rds of his wages. In over 80 interviews of workers conducted by Reuter's journalists, a frequent complaint was the lack of proper training. They also cited alliances between the contractors, subcontractors and Yazuka organized crime group. While TEPCO does not make worker wages public, the interviewees stated their average earnings were between $6 and $12 per hour. Another worker to speak out, Ryo Goshima, claims his employment broker skimmed half his pay from his wages. The oversight is poorly managed by TEPCO and the Japanese government; as of mid-2013 several hundred small companies had been granted decontamination work. According to the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace global think tank report, complete remediation of the site is likely to take three or four decades.
Between January 2015 and March 2015 there was a ten-fold increase of workers at the Fukushima Daiichi plant who received exposures in excess of 5 mSv, according to a TEPCO report. TEPCO's records show that 57 workers were exposed to 5 to 20 mSv in January, 2015; 327 workers exposed to that rate spectrum in February 2015: and in March 2015, 585 workers were exposed to the 5-20 mSv range.
On January 19, 2015, a worker died at the Fukushima Daiichi NPS after falling into an empty water tank. The following day, January 20, at the Fukushima Daini plant, a worker's head was trapped between a 7000 kg piece of moving machinery and the scaffolding, killing him. At another TEPCO plant, Kashiwazaki Kariwa NPS, a worker was seriously injured on January 19, 2015. In response, work at the three nuclear power plants was suspended by TEPCO to analyze the accidents, and develop a safety plan.
Tokaimura nuclear facility
- The Dōnen accident (動燃事故 (Dōnen jiko?)) occurred on March 11, 1997. A small explosion occurred at a nuclear reprocessing plant, exposing 40 workers to radiation.
- On September 30, 1999, a more serious accident occurred resulting in two deaths, at the JCO (formerly Japan Nuclear Fuel Conversion Company) facility in Tokai. Ibaraki Prefecture. While preparing enriched uranium fuel for use in the Jōyō experimental breeder reactor, a criticality occurred causing a criticality lasting 20 hours during which the nuclear fission chain reaction emitted intense gamma and neutron radiation. At least 667 workers, nearby residents and emergency response team members were exposed to excess radiation. Two technicians, Hisachi Ouchi and Masato Shinohara died from the accident. Radiation levels at the plant were 15,000 time higher than normal.
European nuclear industry
France is an international leader in the nuclear power industry, both within France, and throughout the world. Subcontracted labor issues exist in Europe, as well as in North America. A study by the National Institute for Health and Medical Research (INSERM) in France concluded that the largest and least visible population of chronic exposure to ionizing radiation are the nuclear industry's "thousands and even hundreds of thousands of workers who perform daily maintenance and upkeep operations and tasks in nuclear plants, nuclear testing facilities, research centers, reprocessing plants, and nuclear waste management centers." Most problematic is that France's 50+ year long nuclear industry has not historically kept records of worker's internal and external exposure to radiation. The effects of risk to workers and the meaning of subcontracting the most dangerous tasks and practices within the industry is occluded by the "security" of nuclear secrecy.
On May 22, 1986, a nuclear fuel reprocessing plant at La Hague in Normandy, sustained a mechanical malfunction. Five workers were exposed to unsafe levels of radiation and hospitalized. On April 12, 1987, the Tricastin Nuclear Power Plant fast breeder reactor coolant leaked contaminating seven workers. In July 2008, approximately 100 workers were exposed to a radiation leak.
The Chernobyl nuclear reactor meltdown occurred on April 26, 1986, in the Ukraine, during a test of the Unit 4 reactor systems. The explosion and fire caused by human error released massive amounts of radioactive material into the environment, irradiation a large area of Europe, in particular Belarus, Ukraine and the Russian Federation. The cleanup of the radioactive meltdown debris involved 600,000 laborers (NRC statistics), known as "jumpers" or liquidators". These cleanup workers received hundreds of times of the average annual radiation dose allowed in the United States. Statistics on the numbers of deaths, illnesses and genetically produced mutagenic diseases in the following generations remains in debate depending on the source of information. The statistics vary from 4,000 deaths to 93,000 deaths. According to the 2011 report of the German Affiliate of International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War (IPPNW), "Health Effects of Chernobyl: 25 years after the reactor catastrophe"  based on Yablokov's 2010 report, there were 830,000 Clean-up workers - jumpers and liquidators; 350,000 evacuees from the 30 km highly contaminated zone; 8,300,000 people who were affected within the heavily irradiated area in Belarus, Ukraine and Russia; and six hundred million (600,000,000) European people who had exposures to radiation from the accident (Fairlie, 2007). It is estimated that 700,000 "liquidators" - clean up workers - received 100 millisieverts of radiation, and others received higher doses.
The Sellafield nuclear reprocessing plant, located on the coast of the Irish Sea, is built on the former site of the Windscale nuclear reactor and Calder Hall. The British government began developing the site in 1947 as the Windscale Piles plutonium production plant, it's graphite reactor core was cooled by air, rather than water as the US reactors at the Hanford site. By 1952 the facility was separating plutonium from spent uranium fuel. In 1957 the Windscale fire destroyed the core of Pile #1, exposing workers to 150 times the "safe dose limit" of radioactivity and releasing approximately 750 terabecquerels of radioactive material into the environment. The incident is rated a "5" on the International Nuclear Event Scale (INES) of nuclear accidents and incidents. A 1990 study of childhood leukemia and other cancers in the offspring of Sellafield, Dounreay and Seascale nuclear workers show elevated levels of occurrence.
On January 28, 1998, a damaged plutonium-contaminated filter in building B209, causing thirteen workers to be evacuated, necessitating two workers to undergo tests for internal as well as external contamination. Photographic documentation of equipment contaminated with plutonium, poor signage and substandard barriers were cited. Glow Boys, a 1999 film by Mark Ariel Waller interprets this event and others in relation to energy, economy and power and labor.
There have been 21 significant accidents and incidents of radioactive material releases between 1950 and 2000. Tissue samples and organs were removed from 65 deceased former Sellafield workers, as announced by Trade Secretary, Alistair Darling in 2007, and confirmed by Peter Lutchwyche of the British Nuclear Group.
In January 2014, Sellafield issued an order for thousands of workers to not report to work due to elevated levels of radioactivity onsite.
American nuclear industry
Nuclear weapons production workers
In a report based on reviews of raw data on nuclear worker health drafted by the Department of Energy (DOE) and the White House National Economic Council (NEC), the U.S. government found that workers at 14 nuclear weapons plants were exposed to unsafe levels of radiation and other toxins, resulting in a wider range of cancers. The Applied-Industrial Chemical and Energy Workers Union states that workers had higher rates of leukemia, lung cancer, bladder cancer and other diseases. The DOE and NEC panel found that nearly 600,000 nuclear weapons workers developed other cancers as well: Hodgkin's lymphoma, prostrate cancer, kidney cancer, and salivary gland cancer. The Oak Ridge K-25 facility, Tennessee, Savannah River Site, the Hanford Site, Rocky Flats Plant, Fernald Feed Materials Production Center, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and Los Alamos National Laboratory are among the 14 sites studied. Statistics from the Department of Labor, Office of Workers Compensation Program (OWCP) Division of Energy Employees Occupational Illness Compensation are found posted weekly.
The U.S. Federal Register Executive Order 13179, of December 11, 2000 states that thousands of Americans who built the U.S. nuclear defense:
"paid a high price for their service, developing disabling or fatal illnesses as a result of exposure to beryllium, ionizing radiation, and other hazards unique to nuclear weapons production and testing. Too often, these workers were neither adequately protected from, nor informed of, the occupational hazards to which they were exposed."
The document goes on to state that existing worker's compensation programs have failed due to long latency periods of radiation-caused disease as well as inadequate record keeping of data.
Nuclear weapons production facilities
Fernald Feed Plant – Ohio, USA
For decades, radioactive isotopes of plutonium, uranium, radium, thorium and technetium were released from the Fernald Feed Materials Production Plant in Ohio, entering into the air, land and water, including deep ground water of the Great Miami aquifer. Workers and area residents show higher rates of systemic lupus erythematosus, certain cancers, and low blood cell counts.
Hanford Nuclear Reservation – Washington, USA
The Hanford Nuclear Reservation (HNR), also known as the Hanford Site located in Washington State in the Western United States adjacent to the Columbia River, is a nuclear materials production complex that is in the process of being decommissioned. HNR was founded in 1943 as part of the Manhattan Project for large-scale production of plutonium for use in nuclear weapons, including the first nuclear bomb tested at the Trinity site in New Mexico, and the Fat Man nuclear bomb used at Nagasaki, Japan, during WWII. Hanford is considered the most contaminated nuclear waste site America. Much of the clean-up has focused on water and land contamination from leaking tanks, as well as airborne radioactive dusts.
In 1976, a chemical reaction caused a glove box to explode at the Plutonium Finishing Plant, contaminating Harold McCluskey (aged 64). The site of the accident, (242-Z )was closed-off due to high levels of radioactivity, decontamination did not begin until 2014, thirty eight years after the accident. The "McCluskey Room" was used to separate americium from plutonium during the Cold War. McCluskey received the highest dosage of americium of any human being, 500 times the occupational standard, and was so radioactive, his body had to be removed by remote control and placed in a steel and concrete isolation tank where glass and metal were removed from his skin and tissues. He survived the accident. After five months of treatment, involving scrubbings and shots of zinc DTPA, he was permitted to return home, as his radiation count had fallen from 500 above standard to 200 times above safe occupational level.
Idaho National Laboratory – Idaho, USA
Idaho National Laboratory near Arco, Idaho was founded in 1949 as a nuclear reactor testing laboratory. Some consider it to be the site of the first fatal accident in the nuclear military/industrial sector when the SL-1 boiling water reactor melted down, killing two reactor operators, a third operator died shortly thereafter. When a control rod in the reactor was removed manually causing a power surge and ensuing criticality, a steam explosion occurred in the reactor vessel. The event caused the reactor lid to be blown nine feet into the air. The three operators were heavily irradiated and their remains were buried in lead coffins.
There have been other accidents involving radioactive uranium and plutonium in later decades, including an incident in 2011 when seventeen workers were exposed to low-level radiation from plutonium.
Los Alamos National Laboratories – New Mexico, USA
The occupational health studies of the Los Alamos National Laboratory and surrounding communities show elevated levels of certain disease rates among workers.
Oak Ridge – Tennessee, USA
The secret atomic city of Oak Ridge, Tennessee was part of the Manhattan Complex. Workers there were exposed to radioactive materials at plants X-10, K-25 and Y-12, and qualify for compensation from the 2011 Energy Employee Occupational Illness Compensation Act (RECA) for illnesses resulting from their work at the Oak Ridge Reservation. Workers there were exposed to highly enriched uranium and plutonium due to inadequate storage and security at the Oak Ridge plant.
Pantex Plant – Texas, USA
The Pantex Plant is a nuclear weapons assembly and disassembly plant located in the Texas Panhandle region. It also provides technology for manufacturing, evaluating and testing nuclear explosives. It is listed by the United States Environmental Protection Agency as a Superfund Site. A 2014 report in the Global Security Newswire, reports that the contractor overseeing the Pantex nuclear weapons facility was cited for numerous safety hazard incidents. The U.S. Department of Energy cited B&W Pantex (Bechtel and Babcock & Wilcox) for six safety incidents. The DOE Office of Health, Safety and Security's chief of enforcement and oversight, John Boulden, states these "events are significant in that they involved improper management, handling or labeling of highly hazardous materials, including explosives, which have the potential to cause serious injury or death." B&W Pantex did not receive any fines for this breach of worker's safety.
Rocketdyne – California, USA
Between 1957-1964, Rocketdyne located at the Santa Susanna Field Lab, 30 miles north of Los Angeles, California operated ten experimental nuclear reactors. Numerous accidents occurred including a core meltdown. Experimental reactors of that era were not required to have the same type of containment structures that shield modern nuclear reactors. During the Cold War time in which the accidents that occurred at Rockedyne, these events were not publicly reported by the Department of Energy.
- 1957: a fire raged out of control in the Hot Lab leading to "massive contamination."
- 1959: the AE6 reactor released fission gasses, later that year the SRE facility suffered a partial nuclear reactor core meltdown, releasing 459 times the radiation as the Three Mile Island accident.
- 1964: 80% of the SNAP8-ER reactor’s fuel was damaged. 1969: the SNAP8-DR reactor lost one third of its fuel.
- 1971: a radioactive fire broke out from the combustion of sodium reactor coolant that had been contaminated with fission products.
In 1979, Rocketdyne released to the public that these events occurred. In 1999 the site was remediated, although thousands of pounds of contaminated sodium coolant cannot be accounted for. Local residents, including former workers filed a class-action suit in 2005, and were awarded $30 million. Many of the workers and local residents were already deceased at the time of the settlement.
Rocky Flats Plant – Colorado, USA
The employees at Rocky Flats Plant near Denver Colorado made plutonium warhead triggers (known as pits) for the United States nuclear weapons arsenal. The area surrounding the plant is contaminated with radioactive plutonium. According to Marco Kaltofen, and engineer and president of the Boston Chemical Data Corporation, "The material is still there, it's still on the surface." According to the EPA and the Colorado health department, former plant workers, as well as current construction workers might have greater exposure through inhaling radioactive dust than the average construction worker.
The 1982 documentary film, Dark Circle, discloses worker safety issues at the Rocky Flats Plant, and lack of workplace regulations. Hazards at Rocky Flats included perforated (damaged) gloves for handling radioactive materials, and incidents when workers directly inhaled irradiated air.
Thousands of contracted nuclear power plant "jumpers", "nuclear janitors" or "Glow Boys" employed by Atlantic Nuclear Services, Inc. (ANC) and other agencies are recruited to quickly resolve breakdowns, plug leaks, and clean up spills before reaching the allowed dose of radiation exposure. Officially known as nozzle dam technicians, enter containment structures to work on the steam generators. They work swiftly as within five minutes a jumper can be exposed to 1 rem of radiation (equivalent to 50 chest X-rays). A 1982 report states that the NRC limits contract worker exposures to 5 rems per year, however a 1984 report states that the NRC allows jumpers to be exposed to 5 to 12 rems per year. In addition to the danger of external contamination, jumpers can be exposed to internal contamination from breathing or ingesting airborne radioactive particles. The archive of event notification reports from the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, dated from 1999 - 2014, is located at http://www.nrc.gov/reading-rm/doc-collections/event-status/event/ Event reports from the International Atomic Energy Agency is located at: http://www-news.iaea.org/EventList.aspx
Nuclear divers are laborers that work fully submerged in radiated water at nuclear reactors. There are three types of diver tasks: radioactive dives, non-radioactive dives, both of which occur inside reactors, and "mud-work" that involves cleaning out cooling-water intake systems in lakes, rivers and oceans. In 1986, two divers were killed while cleaning intake pipes at the Crystal River Plant in Florida. In 2006, diver Michael Pickart performed a dive inside an Arkansas nuclear reactor, and was exposed to 450 millirems of radiation.
Radium workers in the early 20th Century, known as Luminizers incurred exposure doses that caused skeletal diseases including bone cancer. Radium was used as an alleged medical "cure" for a variety of ailments, as well as to create luminous clock and instrument dials. Radium-dial painters, mostly young women at production facilities in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Illinois and other sites, succumbed to occupational injury and disease. Between the years of 1915 and 1959, there were 1,747 females and 161 males employed as "measured dial" Luminizers, and 1,910 unmeasured female workers, and 315 unmeasured male workers. The most common health issue was "radium jaw" (bone necrosis), anemia, epidermoid carcinomas, and sarcomas.
The National Academy of Sciences Biological Effects of Ionizing Radiation, BEIR VII Phase 2 report, shows that women and children are more susceptible to increased cancer mortality than men. (Page 311 of the report shows this data in a graph.)
The 1991 Final Report of the Nuclear Shipyard Worker Study (NSWS) analyzed the effects of radiation exposure in the U.S. to three cohort groups: 27,872 high-dose nuclear workers; 10348 low-dose nuclear workers; and a control group of 32,510 shipyard workers not exposed to radiation. Dose reconstruction for occupational radiation exposure used by the U.S. Department of Labor assumes that the probability of cancer is "at least as likely as not" rendering it complex for workers to claim compensation via The Act.
Commercial nuclear workers
The case of Karen Silkwood
Incidents of worker exposure to radioactive materials in the commercial nuclear energy industry is well documented. The most famous of these cases is that of Karen Silkwood, an employee of the Kerr-McGee Cimarron Fuel Fabrication Site in Crescent, Oklahoma. Silkwood was a technician, whose job was to make plutonium fuel pellets that were assembled into nuclear reactor fuel rods. She was also a labor union activist negotiating for higher health and safety standards. In 1974, the Oil, Chemical and Atomic Workers Union stated that the Kerr-McGee plant had not only manufactured defective fuel rods, but that it had falsified records, and put employees' safety at risk.
During the time that she was involved in these labor disputes, on November 5, 1974, she found that she had been contaminated with plutonium over 400 times the legal limit. On November 7, it was found that her internal lung contamination was dangerously high during breath tests, and urine samples. On November 13, 1974, Silkwood was driving to a union meeting with documents regarding her case. She died on the way to the meeting from a severe hit-and-run automobile crash that damaged both the rear end and front end of her vehicle. There is much speculation that her car was forced off the road by another vehicle.
Her body was examined by Los Alamos Laboratory Tissue Analysis Program as requested by the Atomic Energy Commission and the State Medical Examiner. It was found that there were significant amounts of plutonium in her lungs, and even higher amounts in her gastrointestinal organs. In 2014, her Lawyer, Gerry Spence gave a two part interview, on the implications of her case in relation to compensation for radiation injury, and on proving strict liability and physical injury in nuclear facilities.
Three-mile Island (1979)
The Three Mile Island accident in Pennsylvania occurred on March 28, 1979 was rated a 5 on the 7-point International Nuclear Event Scale resulting in the meltdown of radioactive fuel in the Unit 2 reactor.
Military workers and contractors
The exposure of military workers and contractors to radioactive materials that exceed safe doses is well documented. After the bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, military workers were sent to these areas to examine and cleanup the rubble. Many of these U.S. veterans developed bone marrow and blood abnormalities, multiple myeloma, leukemia, Hodgkin's disease, myelofibrosis and cancers. During the nuclear weapons testing in the Marshall Islands approximately 300,000 GI's were exposed to radiation, the U.S. Department of Defense estimates 210,000 servicemen, however the National Association of Atomic Veterans cite between 250,000 and 400,000.
The 2008-9 National Cancer Institute/U.S. Department of Health reports that exposure to radiation from nuclear weapons testing is a worldwide issue of significant concern.
“Hundreds of thousands of military personnel and civilians in the United States received significant radiation doses as a result of their participation in nuclear weapons testing and supporting occupations and industries, including nuclear fuel and weapons production, and uranium mining, milling, and ore transport. Hundreds of thousands more were irradiated at levels sufficient to cause cancer and other diseases. These populations include the families of military and civilian workers, and people – known as “downwinders” – living or working in communities surrounding or downstream from testing and related activities, and in relatively distant areas to which nuclear fallout or other radioactive material spread. Federal responses to the plight of affected individuals have been unsatisfactory.”
Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP)
The Waste Isolation Pilot Plant, was designed as a pilot, test study site for deep geologic storage of radioactive waste. It is managed by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and currently serves as the nation's only deep geological repository for transuranic (TRU) nuclear waste generated by the military and defense industry. It is located in Southern New Mexico near the border of Texas and Mexico. It has been disposing of waste 2,150 feet underground in the ancient Permian Sea salt formation since 1999, accepting waste from 22 national atomic legacy sites. Designed to last tens thousand years, the WIPP site had its first leak of airborne radioactive materials on February 1, 2014. 140 employees working underground at the time were sheltered indoors. 13 of these tested positive for internal radioactive contamination. Internal exposure to radioactive isotopes is more serious than external exposure, as these particles lodge in the body for decades, irradiating the surrounding tissues, thus increasing the risk of future cancers and other health effects. A second leak at the plant occurred shortly after the first, releasing plutonium and other radiotoxins, causing concern for communities living near the repository. Since opening in 1999, the WIPP "pilot site" has received over 11,000 shipments of TRU waste (transuranic waste). During the February 14, 2014 leak, 22 workers were exposed to radioactive materials. Don Hancock, Director of the Nuclear Waste Safety Program for the SouthWest Research and information Center describes the theory of how nitrate salts in the "kitty litter" absorbent interacted with plutonium causing the breach of one or more 55-gallon drums stored at WIPP through a chemical reaction that caused an inflagration. Fundamental questions remain regarding the Department of Energy's clean up standards for WIPP, as there is not a "clean-up" standard or regulation for the underground site, by either the DOE oversight or the company contracted to oversee the site, Nuclear Waste Partnership. Over the past 15 years, 91,000 cubic meters of radioactive waste, and more than 171,000 containers of radioactive waste have been placed at WIPP - more than any other site in the country.
- Hazardous materials
- Energy Employees Occupational Illness Compensation Program
- Nuclear weapons testing
- Nevada Test Site
- Uranium mining and the Navajo people
- Nuclear weapons and the United States
- Pacific Proving Grounds
- Radium and radon in the environment
- Uranium mining in the United States
- Uranium mining debate
- Radiation Exposure Compensation Act
- Anti-nuclear movement in the United States
- International Commission on Radiological Protection
- International Radiation Protection Association
- Radiation monitoring
- Efron, Sonni (December 30, 1999). "System of Disposable Laborers". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 28 March 2014.
- Wald, Matthew L. (January 29, 2000). "U.S. Acknowledges Radiation Killed Weapons Workers". New York Times. Retrieved 28 March 2014.
- Iwaki, H.T. (October 8, 2012). "Meet the Fukushima 50? No, you can't.". The Economist. Retrieved 28 March 2014.
- Bagne, Paul (November 1982). "The Glow Boys: How Desperate Workers are Mopping Up America's Nuclear Mess". Mother Jones VII (IX): 24–27. Retrieved 28 March 2014.
- Efron, Sonny. "System of Disposable Laborers". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 1 April 2014.
- Petersen-Smith, Khury. "Twenty-first century colonialism in the Pacific". IRS. Retrieved 1 April 2014.
- World Nuclear Association. "Fukushima Accident". WNA. Retrieved 23 August 2014.
- Jacob, P.; Rühm, L.; Blettner, M.; Hammer, G.; Zeeb, H. (March 30, 2009). "Is cancer risk of radiation workers larger than expected?" (PDF). Occupational Environmental Medicine 66 (12): 789–796. doi:10.1136/oem.2008.043265. PMC 2776242. PMID 19570756. Retrieved 28 March 2014.
- Krolicki, Kevin and Chisa Fujioka. "Japan's "throwaway" nuclear workers". Reuters, MMN: Mother Nature Network. Retrieved 1 April 2014.
- Bureau of Labor Statistics. "Hazardous Materials Removal Workers". Retrieved 1 April 2014.
- Cardis, E.; Vrijheid, M.; Blettner, M.; Gilbert, E.; Hakama, M.; Hill, C.; Howe, G.; Kaldor, J.; Muirhead, C. R.; Schubauer-Berigan, M.; Yoshimura, T.; Bermann, F.; Cowper, G.; Fix, J.; Hacker, C.; Heinmiller, B.; Marshall, M.; Thierry-Chef, I.; Utterback, D.; Ahn, Y-O.; Amoros, E.; Ashmore, P.; Auvinen, A.; Bae, J-M.; Bernar, J.; Biau, A.; Combalot, E.; Deboodt, P.; Sacristan, A. Diez; Eklöf, M.; Engels, H.; Engholm, G.; Gulis, G.; Habib, R. R.; Holan, K.; Hyvonen, H.; Kerekes, A.; Kurtinaitis, J.; Malker, H.; Martuzzi, M.; Mastauskas, A.; Monnet, A.; Moser, M.; Pearce, M. S.; Richardson, D. B.; Rodriguez-Artalejo, F.; Rogel, A.; Tardy, H.; Telle-Lamberton, M.; Turai, I.; Usel, M.; Veress, K. (April 2007). "The 15-Country Collaborative Study of Cancer Risk among Radiation Workers in the Nuclear Industry: Estimates of Radiation-Related Cancer Risks". Radiation Research: Official Journal of the Radiation Research Society. International Agency for Research on Cancer 167 (4): p. 396–416. doi:10.1667/RR0553.1. PMID 17388693. Retrieved 21 April 2014.
- Nikiforuk, Andrew (March 14, 1998). "Echoes of the Atomic Age: Cancer kills fourteen aboriginal uranium workers". Calgary Herald. Retrieved 13 December 2014.
- WISE Uranium Project. "Issues at Rössing Uranium Mine, Namibia". World Information Service on Energy, Uranium Project. Retrieved 7 April 2014.
- Commission de Recherche et d’Information Indépendantes sur la Radioactivité. "Preliminary results of CRIIRAD radiation monitoring near uranium mines in Namibia" (PDF). April 11, 2012. CRIIAD. Retrieved 7 April 2014.
- Commission de Recherche et d’Information Indépendantes sur la Radioactivité. "CRIIRAD Preliminary Report No. 12-32b Preliminary results of radiation monitoring near uranium mines in Namibia" (PDF). April 5, 2012. CRIIRAD EJOLT Project. Retrieved 7 April 2014.
- SOMO. "Uranium workers Namibia unaware of severe health risks". May 12, 2009. SOMO, Netherlands. Retrieved 7 April 2014.
- Labor Resource and Research Institute. "Namibian workers in times of uncertainty: The Labour Movement 20 years after independence". 2009. LaRRI. Retrieved 7 April 2014.
- LaRRI. "Our Work: Labour Resource and Research Institute". April 25, 2013. LaRII. Retrieved 7 April 2014.
- Shinbdondola-Mote, Hilma. "Uranium mining in Namibia: The mystery behind 'low level radiation'". January, 2009. Labor Resource and Research Institute (LaRRI). Retrieved 7 April 2014.
- "Malawian dies on duty at Kayelekera Uranium Mine in Karonga". Nyasa Times. Nyasatimes.com. Retrieved 17 May 2015.
- WISE. "Issues at Operating Uranium Mines and Mills - Africa". WISE Uranium Project. World Information Service on Energy. Retrieved 17 May 2015.
- WISE. "Regulatory Issues - Africa". WISE Uranium Project. World Information Service on Energy. Retrieved 17 May 2015.
- "Te Ara: Encyclopedia of New Zealand". Government of New Zealand. Retrieved 23 October 2014.
- "Te Ara: Encyclopedia of New Zealand". Government of New Zealand. Retrieved 23 October 2014.
- "Te Ara: Encyclopedia of New Zealand". Government of New Zealand. Retrieved 23 October 2014.
- Sovacool, Benjamin K.; Dworkin, Michael H. (September 2014). Global Energy Justice. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. p. 162. ISBN 9781107665088. Retrieved 23 October 2014.
- Pasternak, Judy (2010). Yellow Dirt: An American Story of a Poisoned Land and a People Betrayed. New York, NY: Free Press a Division of Simon & Schuster. ISBN 978-1-4165-9482-6.
- Johnston, B.R.; Dawson, S.E.; Madsen, Gary E. (2007). Johnston, ed, Barbara Rose, ed. Uranium Mining and Milling: Navajo Experiences in the American Southwest. Santa Fe, NM: School for Advanced Research Resident Scholar Books. pp. 97–115. ISBN 978-1-930618-82-4.
- Frosh, Dan (July 26, 2009). "Uranium Contamination Haunts Navajo Country". The New York Times. Retrieved 31 March 2014.
- Johnston, Barbara Rose; Holly M. Barker; Marie I. Boutte; Susan Dawson; Paula Garb; Hugh Gusterson; Joshua Levin; Edward Liebow; Gary E. Madsen; David H. Price; Kathleen Purvis-Roberts; Theresa Satterfield; Edith Turner; Cynthia Werner (2007). Half Lives & Half Truths: Confronting the Radioactive Legacies of the Cold War. Santa Fe, NM: School for Advanced Research Press. ISBN 1-930618-82-4.
- Brugge, Doug; Timothy Benally, Esther Yazzie-Lewis (2007). The Navajo People and Uranium Mining. Albuquerque, NM: University of New Mexico Press. ISBN 0-8263-3779-1.
- Brugge, Doug; Timothy Benally, Ester Yazzie Lewis. "Uranium Mining on Navajo Indian Land". Partnering with Indigenous Peoples to Defend their Lands, Languages and Cultures. Cultural Survival.org. Retrieved 31 March 2014.
- Jung, Carrie. "Navajo Nation Opposes Uranium Mine on Sacred Site in New Mexico". Al Jazerra. Retrieved 31 March 2014.
- Laramee, Eve Andree. "Tracking Our Nuclear Legacy: Now we are all sons of bitches". 2012. WEAD: Women Environmental Artist Directory. Retrieved 31 March 2014.
- Reese, April (May 12, 2011). "Navajo Group to Take Uranium Mine Challenge to Human Rights Commission". The New York Times. Retrieved 21 April 2014.
- Sweet, Bill. "Weakness of Indian Nuclear Regulation Manifest in Reactor Accident". IEEE Spectrum. Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers. Retrieved 26 October 2014.
- "Workers injured in Indian nuclear accident". Aljazeera. May 14, 2014. Retrieved 26 October 2014.
- Agence France-Presse. "One Worker Killed in Indian Nuclear Sub Accident". Defense News, a Gannett company. Retrieved 26 October 2014.
- "World: Asia-Pacific Accident at South Korea nuclear plant". BBC News. BBC. Retrieved 26 October 2014.
- Shankar, Sneha (December 26, 2014). "Three Workers At South Korean Nuclear Power Plant Die Of Suspected Gas Leak". International Business TImes. AP. Retrieved 27 December 2014.
- "3 SKorea workers die at nuke plant construction site". Associated Press. Associated Press. December 26, 2014. Retrieved 27 December 2014.
- International Atomic Energy Agency (2011). "IAEA International Fact Finding Expert Mission of the Fukushima Dai-ichi NPP Accident Following the Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami" (PDF). Team Leaders: Michael William Weightman, Health and Safety Executive, Office for Nuclear Regulation, United Kingdom and Philippe Jamet, Autorité de Surete Nucléaire, France (May 24 - June 2, 2011) (IAEA). IAEA Mission Report, Division of Nuclear Installation Safety, Department of Nuclear Safety and Security. Retrieved 23 August 2014.
- NBC News Wire Reports (November 1, 2012). "Worker at Japan's tsunami-hit Fukushima nuclear plant: Firm sent crews into danger". NBC World News. Retrieved 7 April 2014.
- "Fukushima brings exploitation of nuclear power plants to light". Fukushima brengt uitbuiting in kerncentrales aan het licht. AD.nl. Retrieved 5 April 2014.
- Hoffman, Russell D. "Fukishima's Suicide Squads". Counterpunch. Retrieved 5 April 2014.
- Glionna, John M. (December 4, 2011). "Japan's 'nuclear gypsies' face radioactive peril at power plants". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 5 April 2014.
- Hecht, Gabrielle (January 14, 2013). "Nuclear Janitors: Contract Workers at the Fukushima Reactors and Beyond". The Asia-Pacific Journal 11 (1). Retrieved 20 April 2014.
- Miura, Nagamitsu. "Genpatsu Gypsies: The Hidden Tragedies of Japan's Nuclear Labor Force". Tsuda College, Tokyo, Japan. Retrieved 21 April 2014.
- Efron, Sonni (December 30, 1999). "System of Disposable Laborers". Los Angeles Times. Column One. Retrieved 20 April 2014.
- Hernandez-Ceballos, M.A.; G.H. Hong; R.L. Lozano; Y.I. Kim; H.M. Lee; S.H. Kim b; S.-W. Yeh; J.P. Bolívar; M. Baskaran (July 13, 2012). "Tracking the complete revolution of surface westerlies over Northern Hemisphere using radionuclides emitted from Fukushima" (PDF). Science of the Total Environment. Elsevier 438: 80–85. doi:10.1016/j.scitotenv.2012.08.024. Retrieved 7 April 2014.
- "Japan Outsources Nuclear Cleanup Risks to Subcontractors". Engineering News Record. December 4, 2011.
- Miura, Nagamitsu. "Genpatsu Gypsies: The Hidden Tragedy of Japan's Nuclear Labor Force". 2000. Tsuda College, Tokyo, Japan. Retrieved 7 April 2014.
- Iwaki, H.T. (October 8, 2012). "Meet the Fukushima 50? No You Can't". The Economist.
- Global Voices. "Japan: A Nuclear Gypsy's Tale". Global Voices. Retrieved 7 April 2014.
- Mahr, Krista (March 31, 2011). "What's in Store for Japan's Embattled Nuclear Workers?". TIME Magazine.
- Akai, Yasuo. "Kenji Higuchi, The Truth of the Fukushima 50". Academia.edu. Retrieved 7 April 2014.
- Goldenberg, Suzanne. "The truth about the Fukushima 'nuclear samurai'". The Guardian. Retrieved 7 April 2014.
- Slodkowski, Antoni, and Mari Saito. "Special Report: Help wanted in Fukushima: Low pay, high risks and gangsters". October 25, 2013. Reuters. Retrieved 7 April 2014.
- Disavino, Scott, and Sheppard, David (March 31, 2011). "Exclusive: WANTED: U.S. workers for crippled Japan nuke plant". Reuters. Retrieved 7 April 2014.
- Aoki, Miki (November 22, 2012). "Most Fukushima nuke plant workers ineligible for free cancer checks". The Asahi Shimbun. Retrieved 21 April 2014. ONLY 3.7% OF FUKUSHIMA NUCLEAR PLANT WORKERS ARE ELIGIBLE FOR FREECANCER SCREENINGS
- Shorrock, Tim. "Nuclear Gypsies - The subcontractors who do the dirty work". Money doesn't talk, it swears. Retrieved 21 April 2014.
- Saito, Mari and Slodkowski, Antoni (December 30, 2013). "Special Report: Japan's homeless recruited for murky Fukushima cleanup". Reuters. Retrieved 20 April 2014.
- Digges, Charles. "First worker death at Fukushima highlights mushrooming reports of shady subcontractor activities". Published March 31, 2014. Bellona. Retrieved 20 April 2014.
- Reuters (October 25, 2013). "Low pay, high risks and gangster activity mar cleanup efforts at Fukushima site". Daily News. Retrieved 20 April 2014.
- Pentland, William. "Yakuza Gangsters Recruit Homeless Men For Fukushima Nuclear Clean Up". December 30, 2013. Forbes. Retrieved 20 April 2014.
- Acton, James M. and Mark Hibbs. "Why Fukushima was Preventable". Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. Retrieved 23 August 2014.
- Atoms in Japan. "TEPCO Carries Out Safety Inspections after Fatal Accidents". Japan Atomic Industrial Forum, Inc. JAIF Japan Atomic Industrial Forum. Retrieved 17 May 2015.
- "World: Asia-Pacific Nuclear accident shakes Japan". BBC News Online Network. September 30, 1999. Retrieved 26 October 2014.
- Ryan, Michael E. "The Tokaimura Accident: Nuclear Energy and Reactor Safety". Department of Chemical Engineering, University at Buffalo, State University of New York. Retrieved 26 October 2014.
- Thebaud-Mony, Annie (2011). Nuclear Servitude: Subcontracting and Health in the French Civil Nuclear Industry (Work, Health and Environment). Baywood Publishing Company. ISBN 978-0-89503-380-2.
- Desbordes, J.P. (2006). Atomic parc. A la recherche des victimes du nucléaire (Atomic Park. In search of victims of nuclear power). Paris, France: Actes Sud.
- Boilley, David. "Leukemia around La Hague nuclear reprocessing plant: doubt remains". ACRO. Retrieved 26 October 2014.
- "la Hague: France's Nuclear waste Nightmare and Extreme Greenwashing Example". A Green Road. Retrieved 26 October 2014.
- "Warning over French uranium leak". British Broadcasting Company. BBC News. July 9, 2008. Retrieved 26 October 2014.
- United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission. "Backgrounder on Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant Accident". NRC.gov. Retrieved 31 March 2014.
- West, Larry. "Chernobyl Nuclear Accident". About.com Environmental Issues. Retrieved 31 March 2014.
- Rhodes, Richard. "Chernobyl: Excerpt from Chapter 5: A Matter of Risk, from Nuclear Renewal". Frontline: Nuclear Reaction. Retrieved 31 March 2014.
- German Affiliate of International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War. "Health Effects of Chernobyl: 25 years after the reactor catastrophe" (PDF). IPPNW. Retrieved 1 April 2014.
- Pflugbeil, Sebastian; Angelica Classen; Inge Schmitz-Feuerhake. "Health effects of Chernobyl" (PDF). IPPNW and GFS. Retrieved 1 April 2014.
- World Health Organization. "Health effects of the Chernobyl accident". World Health Organization. Retrieved 7 April 2014.
- United Nations Scientific Committee on the Effects of Atomic Radiation. "The Chernobyl accident: UNSCEAR's assessments of the radiation effects". United Nations. Retrieved 7 April 2014.
- Yablokov, A.V.; et al. (2009). "Chernobyl: Consequences of the Catastrophe for People and the Environment". Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences 1181: 221–286. doi:10.1111/j.1749-6632.2009.04830.x.
- "Health Effects of Chernobyl: 25 Years After The Reactor Catastrophe" (PDF). German Affiliate of International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War. Section on the Chernobyl "Liquidators".
- LeKay, John. "Interview with Adi Roche, Chief Executive of Ireland-based Chernobyl Children's Project". Heyoka Magazine. Part 3 is on Chernobyl.
- Martiniussen, Erik (2003). Sellafield (PDF). The Bellona Foundation. ISBN 82-92318-08-9.
- Morelle, Rebecca (October 6, 2007). "Windscale fallout underestimated". BBC News. Retrieved 20 April 2014.
- McGeoghegan, D.; Whaley, S.; Binks, K.; Gillies, M.; Thompson, K.; McElvenny, D. M. (2010). "Mortality and cancer registration experience of the Sellafield workers known to have been involved in the 1957 Windscale accident: 50 year follow-up". Journal of Radiological Protection. Bibcode:2010JRP....30..407M. 30 (3): 407–431. doi:10.1088/0952-4746/30/3/001. PMID 20798473.
- INES, Joint convention of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), the Nuclear Energy Agency (NEA) of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). "The International Nuclear Event Scale" (PDF). Retrieved 20 April 2014.
- Jones, Steve. "INES classification of events with an off-site radiological impact" (PDF). Journal of Radiological Protection. Retrieved 20 April 2014.
- Gardner, Martin J; Michael P. Snee; Andrew J. Hall; Caroline A. Powell; Susan Downes; John D. Terrell (February 17, 1990). "Results of case-control study of leukaemia and lymphoma among young people near Sellafield nuclear plant in West Cumbria" (PDF). British Medical Journal (BMJ Group) 300 (6722): 423–9. doi:10.1136/bmj.300.6722.423. PMC 1662259. PMID 2107892. Retrieved 21 April 2014.
- World Information Service on Energy. "More accidents at Sellafield". WISE. Retrieved 20 April 2014.
- van Broekmann, Pauline. "GLOW BOYS". LuxOnline, Mute, Issue 11. Retrieved 20 April 2014.
- BBC News (April 18, 2007). "Sellafield organ removal inquiry". BBC News. Retrieved 20 April 2014.
- Smith, Alexander (January 2014). "U.K. nuclear employees ordered to stay home amid increased radiation levels". NBC World News. Retrieved 20 April 2014.
- Wald, Matthew (January 29, 2000). "U.S. Acknowledges Radiation Killed Weapons Workers". The New York Times. Retrieved 20 April 2014.
- Warrick, Joby (January 30, 1999). "Panel Links Illness to Nuclear Work". Washington Post. Retrieved 20 April 2014.
- "Occupational Illness Compensation for DOE Contractor Personnel". 2000. National Economic Council.
- United States Department of Labor. "Division of Energy Employees Occupational Illness Compensation (DEEOIC), Executive Order 13179 - Providing Compensation to America's Nuclear Weapons Workers". December 7, 2000. U.S. Department of Labor. Retrieved 20 April 2014.
- Michaels, David. "Work Products from Inter-Agency Working Groups, Executive Summary: The Link Between Exposure to Occupational Hazards and Illnesses In the Department of Energy Contractor Workforce". March 31, 2000. Memorandum from Assistant Secretary for Environment, Safety and Health to U.S.National Economic Council. Retrieved 20 April 2014.
- U.S. Department of Labor. "Office of Workers' Compensation Programs: EEOICP Program Statistics". U.S. Department of Labor. Retrieved 21 April 2014.
- World Information Service on Energy, Uranium Project. "Former Feed Materials Production Center, Fernald, Ohio". WISE. Retrieved 5 April 2014.
- Environmental Protection Agency. "Hanford Superfund Site History". EPA. Retrieved 5 April 2014.
- Graham, Karen. "Hanford - The most contaminated nuclear waste site in America". March 1, 2014. Digital Journal. Retrieved 5 April 2014.
- Kaltofen, Marco (2010). "Microanalysis of Workplace Dusts from the Mixed Waste Tank Farm of the Hanford Nuclear Reservation". Journal of Environmental Engineering Science. ISBN 9781464965517.
- Geranios, Nicholas K. (February 18, 2014). "Whistle-Blower Who Raised Safety Concerns at Hanford Nuclear Reservation Fired". The Huffington Post. Retrieved 5 April 2014.
- Brown, Valerie (May 9, 2013). "Hanford Nuclear Waste Cleanup Plant May Be Too Dangerous". Scientific American. Retrieved 5 April 2014.
- Brown, Kate (2013). Plutopia: Nuclear Families, Atomic Cities, and the Great Soviet and America Plutonium Disasters. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-985576-6.
- CBS/AP (September 10, 2014). "Four decades later, workers enter site of "Atomic Man" accident". CBS. CBS News. Retrieved 26 October 2014.
- Radiation Works. "The SL-1 Reactor Accident". Radiation Works. Retrieved 5 April 2014.
- Zuckerman, Laura. "Seventeen workers exposed to radiation at Idaho Lab". Reuters. Retrieved 5 April 2014.
- Huntington News. "Plutonium Accident in Idaho has Resulted in Worker Complaint". Snake River Alliance. Retrieved 5 April 2014.
- Wing, Stephen; David Richardson. "Occupational Health Studies at Los Alamos National Laboratory" (PDF). A Review of Occupational Health Studies at LANL. New Mexico's Right to Know: The Impacts of LANL Operations on Public Health and the Environment: 41–52. Retrieved 5 April 2014.
- "Hazardous Materials Health Risks - The Oak Ridge National Lab". Insider Exclusive. Retrieved 5 April 2014.
- Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education. "Illness and Injury Surveillance". ORAU for the Department of Energy. Retrieved 5 April 2014.
- Agency for Toxic Substances and Diseaser Registry. "Oak Ridge Reservation". Center for Disease Control. Retrieved 5 April 2014.
- Aimaq, Dr. Jasmine. "The Oak Ridge National Security Complex: Human Health and the Environment as Casualties of Hot and Cold Wars" (PDF). The Oak Ridge National Security Council. A Global Green USA Legacy Report: 1–31. Retrieved 7 April 2014.
- "Pantex". Pantex. Retrieved 5 April 2014.
- EPA. "Pantex Plant (USDOE) Superfund Site" (PDF). EPA ID# TX 4890110, Site ID # 0604060. EPA. Retrieved 5 April 2014.
- NTI Global Security Newswire, produced by the National Journal. "Pantex Nuclear-Weapons Contractor Warned Over Safety Hazards". nit.org. Nuclear Threat Initiative. Retrieved 23 August 2014.
- McBride, Jim (April 24, 2014). "Inspectors cite concerns at Pantex". Amarillo Globe News. Retrieved 23 August 2014.
- Laramee, Eve Andree. "Tracking Our Nuclear Legacy". WEAD.
- Garner, Dwight (September 27, 2012). "Growing Up in a Town of Weak Beer and Toxic Water Book Review: ‘Full Body Burden’ by Kristen Iversen". The New York Times. Retrieved 5 April 2014.
- Iversen, Kristin (2012). Full Body Burden: Growing up in the Nuclear Shadow of Rocky Flats. United States: Crown Publishing Group. ISBN 978-0-307-95563-0.
- Snider, Laura (February 18, 2012). "Study: Rocky Flats area still as contaminated with plutonium as 40 years ago". The Daily Camera. Retrieved 5 April 2014.
- Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment. "Rocky Flats". Hazardous Materials and Waste Management Division. Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment. Retrieved 5 April 2014.
- Dark Circle, DVD release date March 27, 2007, Directors: Judy Irving, Chris Beaver, Ruth Landy. ISBN 0-7670-9304-6.
- Bagne, Paul (November 1982). "The Glow Boys: How Desperate Workers are Mopping Up America's Nuclear Mess". Mother Jones VII (IX): 24–27 and 44–46.
- Christy, Veta. "Nuclear Janitors Risk Health and Safety". The Multinational Monitor. Retrieved 20 April 2014.
- Galassi, Shawna (January 21, 2004). "Into the bowels of a nuclear reactor: They're called "jumpers" and they go where no one else will". New Times, San Luis Obispo. Retrieved 20 April 2014.
- Nuclear Free Planet. "Nuclear Janitors Risk Health and Safety". August 2, 2011. Retrieved 20 April 2014.
- Goodwillie, David. "Swimming On the Hot Side". March 27, 2013. Popular Science. Retrieved 20 April 2014.
- United Press International (January 11, 1986). "Two Drown Working On Nuclear Plant: Commercial Divers Die Trying to Clean Flue Screen at Crystal River". Orlando Sentinel. Retrieved 21 April 2014.
- Kranhold, Kathryn (January 18, 2007). "Why Some Divers Want to Work in Nuclear Reactors". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved 21 April 2014.
- Rowland, R.E. "Radium in Humans: A Review of U.S. Studies" (PDF). 1994, ANL/ER-3 UC-408. Argonne National Laboratory, Environmental Research Division. Retrieved 21 April 2014.
- Farabaugh, Kane. "Radium Girls Remembered for Role in Shaping U.S. Labor Law". September 2, 2011. Voice of America. Retrieved 21 April 2014.
- National Research Council; Committee to Assess Health Risks from Exposure to Low Levels of Ionizing Radiation; Board on Radiation Effects Research (BRER); Division on Earth and Life Studies (DEL) (2006). Health Risks from Exposure to Low Levels of Ionizing Radiation: BIER VII Phase 2. National Academies Press Open Book. ISBN 978-0-309-09156-5.
- Sponsler, Ruth; Cameron, John R. (October 3, 2005). "Nuclear shipyard worker study (1980-1988): a large cohort exposed to low-dose gamma radiation". International Journal of Low Radiation 1 (4/2005): 463–478. doi:10.1504/ijlr.2005.007915.
- Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. "Radiation Dose Reconstruction". National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH). Retrieved 21 April 2014.
- CDC. "Title 42 - The Public Health and Welfare; Chapter 84 - Department of Energy; Subchapter XVI - Energy Employees Occupational Illness Compensation Program" (PDF). Center for Disease Control. Retrieved 21 April 2014.
- Federal Register, Vol. 65, No. 238, Presidential Documents. "Providing Compensation to America's Nuclear Weapon's Workers" (PDF). Executive Order 13179. U.S. Center for Disease Control. Retrieved 21 April 2014.
- U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission. "Occupational Exposure at Commercial Nuclear Power Reactors and Other Facilities". NUREG-0713. U.S. NRC. Retrieved 5 April 2014.
- Annas, George, JD, MPH. (May 1984). "The Case of Karen Silkwood". American Journal of Public Health 74 (5): 516–8. doi:10.2105/AJPH.74.5.516. PMC 1651625. PMID 6369995.
- Kleiner, Diana J. "Karen Gay Silkwood". Texas State Historical Association. Retrieved 11 April 2014.
- Los Alamos Science. "The Karen Silkwood Story: A True Measure of Exposure" (PDF). No. 23. Los Alamos Science. Retrieved 11 April 2014.
- Rashke, Richard L. (2000) . The Killing of Karen Silkwood: The Story Behind the Kerr-McGee Case (Second ed.). Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press. ISBN 978-0-8014-8667-8.
- Hixon, publisher, Lucas. "Gerry Spence and Karen Silkwood - Part 1 - Compensation for Radiation Injury". Enformable: Nuclear News. Retrieved 11 April 2014.
- Hixon, publisher, Lucas. "Gerry Spence and Karen Silkwood - Part 2 - Proving Liability and Physical Injury". Enformable: Nuclear News. Retrieved 11 April 2014.
- ALSOS Digital Library for Nuclear Issues. "Three Mile Island". Database of 74 publications. ALSOS. Retrieved 5 April 2014.
- Sturgis, Sue. "Investigation: Revelations about Three Mile Island disaster raise doubts over nuclear plant safety". southernstudies.org. The Institute for Southern Studies. Retrieved 23 August 2014.
- U.S. Department of Justice. "Radiation Exposure Compensation Act (RECA)". U.S. Department of Justice. Retrieved 5 April 2014.
- Goldsmith, John R. (January 1, 1995). "Epidemiologic Evidence of Radiofrequency Radiation Effects on Health in Military, Broadcasting and Occupational Studies". International Journal of Occupational and Environmental Health 1 (1): 47–57. doi:10.1179/oeh.19126.96.36.199. PMID 9990158.
- Grayson, J. Kevin (1996). "Radiation Exposure, Socioeconomic Status and Brain Tumor Risk in the U.S. Air Force: A Nested Case-Control Study" (PDF). American Journal of Epidemiology. Johns Hopkins University School of Hygiene and Public Health 143 (5): 480–486. doi:10.1093/oxfordjournals.aje.a008768. PMID 8610663. Retrieved 5 April 2014.
- Goldstein, Ellen L. (December 18, 1979). White House Domestic Policy Staff Assistant Director to Committee for U.S. Veterans of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. Committee for U.S. Veterans of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
- Wasserman,, Harvey; Norman, Solomon; Alvarez, Robert; Walters, Eleanor (1982). Killing Our Own: The Disaster of America's Experience with Atomic Radiation (PDF). New York: Delta Books, Dell Publishing Co., Inc. ISBN 978-0-440-04567-0.
- Caldwell, Glyn C.; et al. (October 3, 1980). "Leukemia Among Participants in Military Maneuvers at a Nuclear Bomb Test: A Preliminary Report". Journal of the American Medical Association 244: pp. 1575–1578. doi:10.1001/jama.1980.03310140033025.
- Lefalle, LaSalle D.; Kripe, Margaret L.; The President's Cancer Panel. "Reducing Environmental Cancer Risk: What We Can Do Now" (PDF). 2008-2009 Annual Report. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, National Institutes of Health, National Cancer Institute. Retrieved 21 April 2014.
- "WIPP Waste Isolation Pilot Plant Recovery". U.S. Department of Energy. Retrieved 28 March 2014.
- Fleck, John (March 8, 2013). "WIPP radiation leak was never supposed to happen". Albuquerque Journal. Retrieved 28 March 2014.
- "What Happened at WIPP in February 2014". U.S. Department of Energy. Retrieved 28 March 2014.
- Jamail, Dahr. "Radiation Leak at New Mexico Nuclear Waste Storage Site Highlights Problems". Truth-Out.org. Retrieved 28 March 2014.
- Price, V.B. and Hancock, Don. "Insight New Mexico: Don Hancock's update on recent WIPP Leak". New Mexico Mercury. Retrieved 18 June 2014.
- Nuclear Metals inc workers added to "special cohort" Federal Register, Volume 79, Issue 158 (Friday, August 15, 2014)
- MAYAK WORKER STUDY: AN IMPROVED BIOKINETIC MODEL FOR RECONSTRUCTINGDOSES FROM INTERNALLY DEPOSITED PLUTONIUM. Radiation Research Journal R.W. Leggett, F.K. Eckerman, V.F. Khokhryakov, K.G. Suslova, M.P.Krahenbuhl, S.C. Miller
- THE BIOKINETICS OF RUTHENIUM IN THE HUMAN BODY. Oak Ridge National Laboratory By R.W. Leggett
- OCCUPATIONAL ENERGY RESEARCH PROGRAM: NUCLEAR SUBMARINE WORKERS AT PORTSMOUTH NAVAL SHIPYARD. National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
- NIOSH MULTI-SITE LEUKEMIA STUDY. National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
- COHORT MORTALITY STUDY: Portsmouth Naval Shipyard, National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, Principal Investigators: Sharon R. SIlver, James Yiin
- LEUKEMIA CASE-CONTROL STUDY: PORTSMOUTH NAVAL SHIPYARD. National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health
- SAN ONOFRE SAFETY ALLEGATIONS. See link to 23-page report on workplace culture and the climate ofdistrust in the nuclear industry
- ENVIRONMENTAL AND HEALTH CONCERNS AT THE FORT RELIANCE WEATHER STATION
- DOE/DEPARTMENT OF LABOR - ENERGY EMPLOYEES OCCUPATIONAL ILLNESSCOMPENSATION PROGRAM ACT. List of facilities where employees at nuclear weapons production related activities and at certain federally owned facilities in which radioactive materials were used who were contaminated with radiation or handled radioactive materials resulting in illness warranting compensation
- DOE WORKERS BEING KILLED BY BUREAUCRATS, NUKE WORKERS FILE CLASSACTION SUITS
- THE HUMAN RADIATION EXPERIMENTS: The Department of Energy roadmap to the story and the records. (download PDF) 57MB
- NUCLEAR RACISM: Uranium Mining on theLaguna and Navajo Reservations
- "Worker-specific exposure monitor and method for surveillance of workers"
- "Constructing Predictive Estimatesfor Worker Exposure to Radioactivity During Decommissioning: Analysis ofCompleted Decommissioning Projects - Master Thesis"
- "OEWH-1073 U.S. Department of Energy, Illness and Injury Surveillance Program, Worker Health Summary,1995-2004"
- "Occupational health physics at afusion reactor"
- "Relationship between air sampling data from glove box work areas and inhalation risk to the worker"
- "Trade-offs between worker risk and public risk during remediation at DOE sites"
- "A URANIUM INHALATION EXPOSURE CASEHISTORY"
- "FUEL HANDLING FACILITY WORKER DOSEASSESSMENT"
- "CANISTER HANDLING FACILITY WORKERDOSE ASSESSMENT"
- Hanford reservation area worker census: a research report for the Rockwell Hanford Operations"
- "Issues in environmental control data used in DD&ER worker dose exposures"
- "REMEDIATION FACILITY WORKER DOSE ASSESSMENT"
- "FINAL REPORT FORMER RADIATION WORKER MEDICAL SURVEILLANCE PROGRAM AT ROCKY FLATS For Department of Energy Programs"
- "Worker Safety and Health Issues Associated with the DOE Environmental Cleanup Program: Insights From the DOE Laboratory Directors' Environmental and Occupational/Public health Standards Steering Group"
- "Compliation of summary statisticsfor radiation worker exposure for the 200 Areas: 1978--1993"
- "AGING FACILITY WORKER DOSEASSESSMENT"
- "The Worker Exposure Failure Modes And Effects Analysis"
- "An assessment of bias and uncertainty in recorded dose from external sources of radiation for workers at the Hanford Site"
- "Medical Surveillance for Former Workers"
- "Basis for radiation protection of the nuclear worker"
- "A survey of doses to worker groups in the nuclear industry"
- "The 1991 Implementation of As Low As Reasonably Achievable (ALARA) Administrative Radiation Exposure Levels: Exposure levels, experiences and lessons learned."
- NUCLEAR WHISTLEBLOWERS CONFERENCE PROCEEDINGS
- SPECIAL EXPOSURE COHORTS / NUCLEAR WORKERS. Department of Health and Human Services, Center for Disease Control
- LOW PAY, HIGH RISKS AND GANGSTER ACTIVIY MAR CLEANUP EFFORTSAT FUKUSHIMA SITE
- SPECIAL REPORT: HELP WANTED IN FUKUSHIMA: LOW PAY, HIGH RISKS AND GANGSTERS. Reuters report By Antoni Slodkowski and Mari Saito
- FUKUSHIMA WORKERS EXPLOITATION: 60 DOLLARS A DAY, NOWHERE ELSE TO GO. Reuters
- WORLD NUCLEAR INDUSTRY STATUS REPORT 2013
- IS CANCER RISK OF RADIATION WORKERS LARGER THAN EXPECTED? Occupational and Environmental Medicine Journal. P Jacob, W R ̈uhm, L Walsh, M Blettner, G Hammer, H Zeeb