Did Cesium In Aomori Mushrooms Come From Chernobyl?

A recent Asahi Shimbun article cited professor Yasuyuki Muramatsu where he tried to explain cesium levels found in wild mushrooms from Aoimori to not be caused by the Fukushima nuclear disaster.

“If the Towada “chichitake” mushrooms had been contaminated by the Fukushima accident, then two types of radioactive cesium–cesium-134 and cesium-137–would have been detected in roughly equal amounts, he said.”

Mushrooms around Aomori have been found with varied levels of cesium 134 compared with cesium 137. Some were found to only have cesium 137. As far as the cesium levels being from Chernobyl, according to what we were able to find Japan received very low levels of fallout from Chernobyl, far less than Europe did. Mushrooms tested in southern Germany in recent years had between 5 bq/kg of cesium 137 up to over 1000 bq/kg.

While the original source term estimated out of Fukushima Daiichi were in roughly equal numbers of cesium 134 & 137, water sampling inside the plant recently shows levels with slightly higher cesium 137 vs. 134. This may be partially attributable to the short half life of cesium 134 of 2.0652 years compared to 30 years for cesium 137.

Fish tested near Fukushima Daiichi had varying ratios of cesium 134 to cesium 137.
Wildlife and foods tested around Fukushima showed the same varying ratios Emergency_monitoring_test_results_in_English
Testing in Aizu Misato showed the same varying ratios including in wild mushrooms Aizu Misato – agricultural products2012

It is likely that some of the cesium found in the environment is coming from old fallout, The notion that the amounts should be found in equal proportions almost two years since the disaster is not an accurate assumption.

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