Ionizing radiation

Health risk assessment from the nuclear accident after the 2011 Great East Japan earthquake and tsunami, based on a preliminary dose estimation


Book cover image

Publication details

Number of pages: 172
Publication date: 2013
Languages: English
ISBN: 978 92 4 150513 0


Executive summary in other languages


The earthquake and tsunami in Japan on 11 March 2011 led to releases of radioactive material into the environment from the Tokyo Electric Power Company’s Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant.

A major release of radioactivity to the environment is always of concern, owing to potential acute and long-term health effects. Evidence from historic events confirms that any major uncontrolled release of radiation should be cause for immediate response and scientific assessment of potential health effects.

When such an event occurs, the World Health Organization’s mandate, as described in the Joint Radiation Emergency Management Plan of the International Organizations, is to assess and respond to public health risks.

The primary purpose of this health risk assessment of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear accident is to estimate its potential public health impact so that future health needs can be anticipated and public health actions can be taken. This assessment is based on a preliminary estimate of radiation doses, as described in a WHO report published in May 2012.

Related links