Rebuilding a Region: Tōhoku Five Years Later

On March 11, 2011, a giant tsunami slammed into the east coast of northern Japan, killing 18,000 and triggering the second-worst nuclear accident in history. Five years and ¥26 trillion yen later, the government’s reconstruction plan is nearing the halfway point. We mark the fifth anniversary of the Great East Japan Earthquake with exclusive reports on the progress of recovery and the daunting obstacles that remain.

Telling the Story of FukushimaWinifred Bird

Five years after the March 11 earthquake and tsunami touched off a triple meltdown at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, the disaster is no longer just a current event—it is also a part of Japan’s history. But how should that history be told? Government and civil society groups have different answers, and they are starting to emerge in a battle of museums.
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British Expat: “Don’t Forget Ishinomaki!”

No single municipality suffered more from the March 2011 tsunami than Ishinomaki in Miyagi Prefecture, where the disaster claimed 3,500 lives and destroyed 20,000 buildings. British citizen and longtime Ishinomaki resident Richard Halberstadt, a passionate advocate for his adopted city, spoke with us about his 23-year relationship with the town and shared his perspective on the long and arduous road to reconstruction.
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Rehousing in Tōhoku: The Two Faces of ReconstructionKikuchi Masanori

The pace of recovery in the five years since the Tōhoku tsunami has varied by sector and locale. Big urban centers like Sendai have fared relatively well, and many local industries are making a comeback. Yet some 60,000 tsunami survivors—many of them elderly—remain in housing purgatory, especially in the region's smaller communities. Journalist Kikuchi Masanori continues his series on post-disaster recovery with a report on the reconstruction gap in Miyagi Prefecture.
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The Fukushima Cleanup Will Take GenerationsTakahashi Hideki

Five years after the Tōhoku tsunami triggered the second-worst nuclear accident in history, the cleanup team at Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station has yet to stem the buildup of contaminated water at the site or determine the precise location of much of the reactor fuel. Veteran journalist Takahashi Hideki, who has reported extensively on the Fukushima accident, visited the site recently to report on the progress of decommissioning and the monumental obstacles that stand in the way of true recovery.
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