Radioactivity concentrations of 131I, 134Cs and 137Cs in river water in the greater Tokyo metropolitan area after the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant accident

Yasuji Oura, Mitsuru Ebihara

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Radioactivity concentrations of 131I, 134Cs and 137Cs were determined for the river water sampled from the Edogawa River, the Arakawa River and the Tamagawa River, three major rivers spreading in or surrounding Tokyo Metropolis. Data from March 28 to April 7 are presented. Among the three radioactive nuclides, 131I recorded the highest radioactivity concentrations of 31 Bq/L and 11 Bq/L in water samples collected on March 28 from the Edogawa and the Arakawa Rivers, respectively. Two trends of the 131I concentration change occur from March 28 to April 7 for the Edogawa River water; the 131I concentration decreased abruptly from March 28 to March 30 and then decreased gradually until April 7. These trends suggest that 131I in the Edogawa River in late March primarily originated from fallout in the Tokyo-Chiba area, which dropped to the ground together with rain from March 21 to 24. The 137Cs concentration in river water from the Edogawa River changed differently from the 131I concentration. The highest 137Cs concentration was measured for the sample collected on March 31. Apparently, fractionation between 131I and 137Cs occurred during the transportation from FDNPP to the metropolitan area and also during the transportation from the ground where radionuclides deposited to the sampling site of river water.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)303-309
Number of pages7
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2012



  • Fukushima
  • River
  • Tokyo

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geophysics
  • Geochemistry and Petrology

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