Pollution due to Radiations:
Hazards of nuclear radiations are extremely serious, because they upset the genetic make up of the living beings. Environmental pollution from nuclear radiations is increasing rapidly due to proliferation of nuclear power plants. All nuclear power plants produce large quantities of nuclear wastes, which remain radioactive for long periods of time. These wastes need to be stored and disposed off in a manner that prevents the contamination of the environment with radioactivity. But no satisfactory way has yet been developed to store the radioactive waste material over long periods, without running the risk of leakage. Nuclear wastes include radioactive elements that will be dangerous for thousands of years. For example, Plutonium-239 remains in the biosphere for 2,00,000 years, with all its ill-effects before it loses its radioactivity. Unfortunately, the developed countries which produce such waste in huge quantities are known to be cleverly dumping this waste in the poor countries. producing grave hazard fo their people who do not at all benefit from the positive side of nuclear energy.
Whenever nuclear explosions occur, radioactive particles are camed to great distances by air currents. The radioactive material eventually settles on earth and is then taken up from the soil by plants. If these plants are eaten by animals or man, these radioactive particles get deposited in flesh, milk or bones of the animals. Once a certain concentration of these radioactive substances is reached, their radiations can destroy tissue and cause death from cancer or tissue damage. Unfortunately nuclear bombs were used by USA against Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki in 1945. Apart from the deaths caused by heat and blast, tens of thousands of people died from damage caused by radiation, even the babies born afterwards were affected by radiation that brings about genetic change. Testing of nuclear weapons over the ground also creates increasing danger from radiation and so there has been a worldwide movement to ban nuclear tests. India has played a big role in this movement.
Now a days, many people talk of the devastating effects of a nuclear war. There are now enough nuclear warheads to destroy all military installations, most concentrations of industry and almost every city on the globe. If even 1% of existing weapons are used, then for months after the explosions, radioactive ash would continue to fall upon us from the upper atmosphere. The dust and smoke raised by these nuclear explosions might create a nuclear winter about which we have talked earlier, and all life and the whole civilisation may be extinguished, The attacker as well as the attacked, and all the other nations would be there no more to shed tears over their fate. Therefore, concern to bring about nuclear disarmament has become the most important problem of the world.