Radiation Risks in Perspective

September 9, 2017

Living next to a nuclear power plant for a year is as risky as eating one banana.

  • Living next to a nuclear power plant for a year exposes you to slightly less extra radiation than eating one banana.
  • Flying from New York to LA exposes you to twice as much radiation as a chest x-ray.
  • A mammogram exposes you to three times the radiation received by people exposed to the maximum external dose from the Three Mile Island accident.
  • A dental x-ray exposes you to a third more radiation than spending March 17 in an average town near the Fukushima plant.
  • The yearly radiation dose from the natural potassium in your body is 13 times more than the EPA annual release limit for a US nuclear power plant.
  • The maximum annual routine radiation exposure permitted for radiation workers in the US is almost 17 times the dose received from a mammogram. It is half the lowest annual radiation exposure clearly linked to any increased cancer risk.