18 Apr 2005

US study says cancer rates in Marshalls could double because of radiation

6:49 am on 18 April 2005

A US study has found that the number of cancers caused by hydrogen bomb testing in the Marshall Islands is set to double.

The research has been carried out more than half a century after the tests were conducted in the Pacific nation.

The study by the US government's National Cancer Institute estimated 530 cancers had already been caused by the tests... particularly the explosion of a 15 megaton hydrogen bomb codenamed Bravo in March 1954.

It said another 500 cancers were likely to develop among Marshall Islanders who were exposed to radiation.

The study was prepared for the US Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources.

The committee is due to launch hearings next month to review a petition from the Marshall Islands seeking more than three billion US dollars in additional compensation for nuclear test damage and health care.