No dangerous concentrations of ruthenium were identified in Moldova, statement

In the Republic of Moldova, there were identified no dangerous concentrations of ruthenium, vice director of the National Agency for Regulation of Nuclear and Radiological Activities Ion Balan stated when asked by the press following concerns expressed by a number of foreign environmental organizations after radiation detection centers reported high Ru-106 contamination in the air at the end of September.

Ion Balan has told IPN that there are no reasons for panic. The concentrations of radioactive substances in the air on Moldova’s territory are within the admissible limits. “There were discovered only very small particles on whose surface the radioactive ruthenium transported by wind deposited. There was no danger on the territory of the Republic of Moldova,” stated Ion Balan.

In connecting with suspicions about a possible accident at the plant Mayak in Chelyabinsk region, Ion Balan reiterated that the Russian authorities stated no official position on what happened at the end of September. “We do not have concrete data. Nobody confirmed that an accident happened there. We only have the information from Rosghidromet, which carried out assessments in the region and determined increased concentrations,” said Ion Balan.

At end-September, the automated radiation monitoring systems detected high concentrations of ruthenium-106 in the Ural Mountain of Russia and then in Poland, Bulgaria and Ukraine. The samples taken in Argayash and Novogornyi confirmed an extremely high Ru-106 contamination in the area, but the Russian authorities didn’t consider the critical level of the admissible limit was exceeded to sound the alarm. Therefore, the pollution source hasn’t been localized. A number of foreign environmental organization expressed concern about the possible consequences of pollution even if the concentration of radioactive isotopes didn’t pass the critical level.

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