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Global Security Newswire

Daily News on Nuclear, Biological & Chemical Weapons, Terrorism and Related Issues

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U.S. to Extend Lax Radiation Standards for "Dirty Bomb," Nuclear Emergency Response, Critics Say

The Bush administration plans to use controversial radiation standards to guide the Environmental Protection Agency's response to radiological emergencies, including "dirty bombs," the Superfund Report disclosed yesterday (see GSN, July 29).

The Homeland Security Department first adopted the standards last month in a document outlining federal plans to respond to a terrorist nuclear or radiological weapon attack.  Critics argued that the department was preparing to allow post-attack radiation levels that far exceeded normal environmental standards.

The administration is now prepared to use those standards to respond to other nuclear emergencies, according to Superfund Report.

"This is the first time the federal government is saying it is OK to fry members of the public," one unnamed critic said (Douglas Guarino, Superfund Report, Aug. 11).

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