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IMPACT ON PEOPLE AND THE ENVIRONMENT
Release

WHY DO WE NEED LARGE RELEASE CRITERIA?

 

To rate an event purely on the doses received does not communicate the true significance of what happened at the facility, nor does it take account of potential widespread contamination. Thus, for the accident levels of INES (4–7) criteria have been developed based on the quantity of radioactive material released, rather than the dose received.

The advantages of using criteria based on the quantity of radioactivity released are that they...

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cover effects to both people and the environment. Take into account environmental effects and land contamination as well as doses received by individuals.

 

are independent of weather, time of year, and population density. The wind may move the radioactive cloud away from populated areas.

 

are independent of success of protective actions taken. The efficient evacuation of members of the public may result in relatively small doses, despite a significant accident at a facility.