12 Years On: Residents' Return Slow After Lifting of Evacuation Orders


Okuma, Fukushima Pref., March 8 (Jiji Press)--Only a small number of residents have returned to their hometowns in areas affected by the 2011 nuclear accident in Fukushima Prefecture after the Japanese government lifted evacuation orders.

Since 2017, the government has designated "reconstruction bases" in "difficult-to-return" zones, or areas exposed to high levels of radiation, in six towns and villages, where intensive decontamination work has been conducted so that people can live there.

While evacuation orders have been lifted for such bases in stages, infrastructure development has not caught up.

Only one out of 82 registered residents has returned to a reconstruction base in the village of Katsurao after an evacuation order was lifted in June last year, partly because the base is far from the center of the village.

The towns of Okuma and Futaba, which host Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc.'s <9501> Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant, the site of the March 2011 triple reactor meltdown, have had 36 returnees and about 60 returnees in their respective reconstruction bases.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press