RADIATION: Benefits/Dangers by Dinah Moche

RADIATION: Benefits/Dangers

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In keeping with her subtitle, Moche lists several uses for radiation (such as medical diagnosis, airport security, detecting art forgeries, and finding blocks in pipelines) and then goes on to its possible bad effects on people (genetic damage, leukemia, radiation sickness)--giving equal weight to each item whether it be dating moon rocks or estimating cancer deaths. Overall, however, she allots far more space to the benefit side. Her dull summary-style approach involves passing or parenthetical definitions of everything from black holes and accelerators to hormones and DNA, but little explanation, discussion, or assessment. Moche reports, toward the end, that there are now considered to be no safe radiation thresholds, but instead of specifying any of the ""complex technical, economic, and social conditions"" involved, about the only conclusion she comes to is that safeguards ""must"" be used. A direct contrast to Pringle's thoughtful treatment (below), and unhelpful in the aggregate.

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 1979
Publisher: Watts