Summary written by Jenna Alsaleh for discussion on 8/30/16:
“Is a Little Dose of Radiation So Bad?” – John Emshwiller and Gary Fields
This article discusses the controversy over the linear no-threshold (LNT) model, which states that any amount of radiation increases someone’s cancer risk. Some scientists, such as Dr. Carol Marcus, believe that the LNT model is a huge scandal and should be abandoned by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. Dr. Marcus and her colleagues are begging that the NRC go back to the thinking before the 60’s which constituted that below a certain level, radiation wasn’t at all harmful to humans. Many other scientists, such as those at the Environmental Protection Agency suggest that there isn’t enough evidence to assert that a certain level of radiation will not be harmful to the public. The public’s fear of radiation because of the LNT model is also another point of debate that both sides use in order to defend their ideals. Despite arguments from both sides, however, those in opposition of the LNT model are currently going up against what appears to be an uphill battle in trying to persuade the NRC of changing legislation.