An ad hoc committee under the auspices of the National Research Council of the National Academy of Sciences will perform a pilot study of cancer risks in populations near seven U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (U.S.NRC)-licensed nuclear facilities using two epidemiologic study designs: (i) an ecologic study of multiple cancer types in populations of all ages and (ii) a record-linkage-based case-control study of cancers in children. The pilot study will focus on the five activities described below:
1. Obtain nuclear facility airborne and waterborne effluent release and meteorology data and digitize these data into a form that is usable for dose estimation.
2. Develop a computer model to obtain estimates of absorbed doses to individual organs resulting from effluent releases.
3. Obtain cancer incidence and mortality data at the census-tract level to assess the feasibility of the ecologic study.
4. Link birth registration and cancer incidence data to identify eligible cases of pediatric cancers and matched controls to assess the feasibility of the record-linkage-based case-control study.
5. Develop processes for involving and communicating with the public.
At the conclusion of the pilot study, the committee will issue a report with findings regarding the scientific feasibility of carrying out a nationwide assessment of cancer risks in populations near U.S.NRC-licensed facilities. The report will also include, if appropriate, an analysis of cancer risks in the populations near the seven pilot facilities.