Ari Beser: How Citizen Science Changed the Way Fukushima Radiation is Reported

A Geiger counter built with Safecast's do-it-yourself kit reads 1.269 microseivert per hour on Route 6, the highway that borders the Fukushima Dai Ichi Nuclear Power Plant. This reading was taken just 5 km from the crippled nuclear reactor.

Tokyo – “It appears the world-changing event didn’t change anything, and it’s disappointing,”said Pieter Franken, a researcher at Keio University in Japan (Wide Project), the MIT Media Lab (Civic Media Centre), and co-founder of Safecast, a citizen-science network dedicated to the measurement and distribution of accurate levels of radiation around the world, especially in Fukushima. “There was a chance after the disaster for humanity to innovate our thinking about energy, and that doesn’t seem like it’s happened.  But what we can change is the way we measure the environment around us.”