Japan Recovery Likely to Take Decades – 2 articles

Operation Tomodachi [Image 2 of 4]

Image by DVIDSHUB via Flickr

Clearly, the recent cascade of disasters in Japan will have a protracted recovery. According to a CNN article, Japan faces lengthy recovery from Fukushima accident, April 22, 2011.

The worst may have passed in the most serious nuclear accident since Chernobyl, but cleaning up when it’s finally over is likely to take decades and cost Japan an untold fortune.

A six- to nine-month horizon for winding down the crisis, laid out by plant owner Tokyo Electric Power this week, is justthe beginning. Near the end of that timeline, Japan’s government says it will decide when — or whether — the nearly80,000 people who were told to flee their homes in the early days of the disaster can return. Friday marks six weeks since the March 11 magnitude-9.0 earthquake and subsequent tsunami that triggered the crisis. Some of those who have already spent six weeks in emergency housing … say they don’t expect to return to what was home.

Many of those displaced by the disaster have spent a month living in government shelters — sometimes just gyms — and are running low on money. Tokyo Electric has promised to make a down payment on compensation of 1 million yen (about $12,000) per household, with the intention of sending out checks by late April. Another 66,000 have been told to prepare for evacuations in towns where radiation readings are at levels that couldincrease the long-term risk of cancer for anyone who stays. That will certainly add to what is likely to be a staggering tab for the Japanese government and Tokyo Electric, the country’s largest utility.”We are mobilizing our resources in order to tackle the situation, to relieve the burdens on those people who have evacuated from the area,” Cabinet spokesman Noriyuki Shikata said. “We know that it’s going to cost a quite significant amount. But at this juncture, I don’t think we have come to a specific kind of budget size.”

Another article with the same theme was published by Reuters on April 24, with some details about the preliminary blueprint being used for recovery planning.

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