Mitos y errores sobre Chernóbil

El vigésimo aniversario del accidente nuclear de Chernóbil, ocurrido el 26 de abril de 1986, está provocando una nueva ola de afirmaciones alarmistas sobre sus repercusiones en la salud humana y el medio ambiente. Como ha llegado a ser ritual en semejantes ocasiones conmemorativas, se le atribuyen centenares de miles de víctimas mortales y se preparan nuevos informes sobre elevadas tasas de cáncer, defectos al nacer y mortalidad total.

Se trata de un panorama muy deformado... y al tiempo perjudicial para las víctimas del accidente de Chernóbil. Todos los estudios científicos acreditados que se han llevado a cabo hasta ahora han concluido que las repercusiones de la radiación han sido menos dañinas de lo que se temía. Unas docenas de los trabajadores que afrontaron la urgencia y lucharon contra el fuego en el reactor sucumbieron por la enfermedad aguda provocada por la radiación. Siguen en marcha estudios sobre las elevadas tasas de cáncer y enfermedades cardiovasculares entre los "liquidadores", que trabajaron en el local del reactor en los meses posteriores al accidente, y, entre quienes eran niños en aquel momento, se han detectado unos 5.000 casos de cáncer de tiroides, atribuido al yodo radioactivo absorbido con el consumo de leche en las semanas inmediatamente posteriores al accidente.

Ha habido un sufrimiento innegable entre las 330.000 personas que fueron trasladadas y reasentadas después del accidente. Sobre eso no hay duda, pero, para los cinco millones de personas que viven en regiones afectadas y son designadas como "víctimas" de Chernóbil, la radiación no ha tenido repercusiones discernibles en su salud física.

To continue reading, please log in or enter your email address.

Registration is quick and easy and requires only your email address. If you already have an account with us, please log in. Or subscribe now for unlimited access.


Log in;
  1. Patrick Kovarik/Getty Images

    The Summit of Climate Hopes

    Presidents, prime ministers, and policymakers gather in Paris today for the One Planet Summit. But with no senior US representative attending, is the 2015 Paris climate agreement still viable?

  2. Trump greets his supporters The Washington Post/Getty Images

    Populist Plutocracy and the Future of America

    • In the first year of his presidency, Donald Trump has consistently sold out the blue-collar, socially conservative whites who brought him to power, while pursuing policies to enrich his fellow plutocrats. 

    • Sooner or later, Trump's core supporters will wake up to this fact, so it is worth asking how far he might go to keep them on his side.
  3. Agents are bidding on at the auction of Leonardo da Vinci's 'Salvator Mundi' Eduardo Munoz Alvarez/Getty Images

    The Man Who Didn’t Save the World

    A Saudi prince has been revealed to be the buyer of Leonardo da Vinci's "Salvator Mundi," for which he spent $450.3 million. Had he given the money to the poor, as the subject of the painting instructed another rich man, he could have restored eyesight to nine million people, or enabled 13 million families to grow 50% more food.

  4.  An inside view of the 'AknRobotics' Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

    Two Myths About Automation

    While many people believe that technological progress and job destruction are accelerating dramatically, there is no evidence of either trend. In reality, total factor productivity, the best summary measure of the pace of technical change, has been stagnating since 2005 in the US and across the advanced-country world.

  5. A student shows a combo pictures of three dictators, Austrian born Hitler, Castro and Stalin with Viktor Orban Attila Kisbenedek/Getty Images

    The Hungarian Government’s Failed Campaign of Lies

    The Hungarian government has released the results of its "national consultation" on what it calls the "Soros Plan" to flood the country with Muslim migrants and refugees. But no such plan exists, only a taxpayer-funded propaganda campaign to help a corrupt administration deflect attention from its failure to fulfill Hungarians’ aspirations.

  6. Project Syndicate

    DEBATE: Should the Eurozone Impose Fiscal Union?

    French President Emmanuel Macron wants European leaders to appoint a eurozone finance minister as a way to ensure the single currency's long-term viability. But would it work, and, more fundamentally, is it necessary?

  7. The Year Ahead 2018

    The world’s leading thinkers and policymakers examine what’s come apart in the past year, and anticipate what will define the year ahead.

    Order now