The Miami Herald
Published Monday, July 16, 2001
By Jerry Brown

With political pressure building to find new sources of energy, the Bush administration is seeking to resurrect America's ageing nuclear-power industry. However, a growing body of scientific evidence, including data on radiation levels in baby teeth collected in the United States, suggests that a strong link exists between radioactive emissions from nuclear-power plants and increased rates of childhood cancer. Although its current license does not expire until 2012, Florida Power &Light already has applied to the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission to extend the Turkey Point nuclear-plant license for 20 years, through 2032.The commission has declared that the extension poses ``virtually no threat to public health or the environment. ''However, a March 2001 report issued by the Radiation and Public Health Project, a non profit research organization, found ``strong evidence that exposure to radioactivity is one cause of childhood cancer in south eastern Florida. ''These cancer concerns focus on FPL's emission of radioactive materials into the environment, currently allowed by the federal government as a by-product of ``normal'' nuclear-power operations. The stakes are too high prematurely to embrace the second coming of nuclear power .Foremost among these radioactive emissions is Strontium-90, a known carcinogen, produced only by nuclear bombs or reactors. The health-project scientists have been tracking levels of Sr-90 in the baby teeth of children throughout the United States, as part of a national study called ``The Tooth Fairy Project.