Coincidence of the aces cancer rate has not been proven
In a first statement, the federal government claims that the increased cancer rate in the region around Asse is a statistical coincidence. Environmental activists and Greens hold against it: The Federal Environment Ministry can not refute a possible connection.
Last Friday, the Federal Government for the first time to the increased cancer in the region around the Lower Saxony nuclear waste disposal „Aces II“ Position related. For the Federal Environment Ministry, the accumulated diseases are a statistical coincidence. Environmental activists and Alliance 90 / The Greens responded with indignation.
As the „Brunswick newspaper“ reported on the weekend, there is no apparent link between the increased leukemia and thyroid cancer diseases in the region around the nuclear waste storage Asse II for the Federal Government. Rather, statistical coincidences in the collection of data are responsible, as in a statement of the coalition on a request the fraction „The green“ was.
In the former Asse II salt mine, around 126,000 barrels of highly radioactive waste are stored. The camp as such is considered ailing and should also be closed as soon as possible, according to the Lower Saxony Ministry of the Environment. Because already threatens a collapse of the plant and thus a contamination of groundwater with radioactive waste. Environmentalists, however, assume that groundwater has already been radioactively contaminated for some time.
Diseases are subject to statistical coincidence
The increase in the cancer rate in the municipality of Asse can not be explained by exposure to radiation from the Asse nuclear waste storage facility, as Parliamentary State Secretary Ursula Heinen-Esser (CDU) writes in the statement of the Federal Ministry for the Environment. "To be able to explain the observed increase with radiation, according to the available scientific knowledge about the development of corresponding cancers, the dose would have to be about 10,000 times higher than observed," explained Heinen-Esser. An evaluation of rare cancers in a relatively small region, is inevitably subject to strong statistical fluctuations, as the statement continues. The increased incidence could be considered due to statistical randomness.
Federal government has no clear evidence
The Lower Saxony state parliament member of the Greens, Stefan Wenzel, criticized the first opinion of the federal government that the cancer rate in the Asse region around „statistically random“ be. Thus Wenzel told the NDR radio, the statement of the Federal Government was „courageous, because we have very clear evidence that the significance, that is, the likelihood that these values are increased, is quite substantial. They are two to three times as high as normal. And that with a whole number of leukemia species“. The federal government could definitely not prove that there was no connection to the leukemia cases, Wenzel continued. The politician demanded that the causes must be examined more closely. „Of course, one can not say clearly that the frequency of illnesses related to the aces. But those who claim the opposite must prove it.“ Finally, the governing coalition can not assert, „the aces are not responsible for this“.
New measuring programs required
The Federal Office for Radiation Protection had also clearly positioned itself in advance. There is currently no danger from the nuclear waste storage facility for the inhabitants of the region. Environmental activists see it as one „premature statement“ and called for a review of the measurement programs. „We believe that the existing measurement program must be reviewed and, if necessary, revised, especially with regard to the complete collection of pollutants from the exhaust air. Only then could one investigate possible causes of cancer among employees and residents, as the association „Action nuclear waste free aces“ writes. (Sb)
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