Justin Bieber

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What's this about Justin Bieber's crew refusing to tour Japan? Are their fears about radiation justified?
—Clara, Switzerland, via the inbox

According to reports, Bieber manager Scooter Braun—not to be confused with swagga coach Ryan Good—recently berated his crew over their reluctance to show up for scheduled appearances in Osaka and Tokyo.

If the reports are true, Bieber may join Avril Lavigne and Slash, who also have canceled appearances in Japan. Is their decision a wise one?

RELATED: Bieber Egged At Sydney Concert

No, at least, not on the radiation front.

In Tokyo and other major cities, "the radiation exposure is no different from where it was a year ago," says Dr. David Brenner, professor of radiation biophysics at the Center for Radiological Research at the Columbia University Medical Center. "There was an increase in radiation in March, but now it's down to normal levels again."

And that goes for water and air. As for food, "the government every day is modifying their list of what can be sold and where it can be sold, and contaminated food is not being sold. It's being monitored pretty intensively."

(Brenner recently gave the same reassuring talk—with plenty of backup data—to the folks at the Metropolitan Opera, who are heading out to Japan shortly.)

In fact, says Dr. Peter Caracappa, clinical assistant professor of nuclear engineering at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute:

"They'd actually receive a lot more of a radiation dose on the flight to Japan because of exposure to cosmic rays. So if they decide to go to Amsterdam instead of Tokyo they have not saved themselves.

"It's not like this concert is happening on the step of the Fukushima nuclear plant."

Indeed: If you are in Japan and looking for American entertainment, take heart: Maroon Five still plans to tour there this summer.

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