Tue, Mar 12, 2013 - Page 6 News List

Japan marks anniversary of tsunami

STILL SUFFERING:Efforts to rebuild the region hit by a tsunami two years ago have been slow, and more than 300,000 people remain without a permanent home

AFP, ISHINOMAKI, Japan

Nearly 10,000 aftershocks have been recorded since the original quake, including 736 jolts that measured above magnitude 5.0, some shaking the ground at the plant where there are still no permanent fixes for the damaged reactors.

The government says the plant is stable and no longer releasing radioactive materials. It says food products from the region are checked for radioactive contamination before being shipped to markets.

Despite reassurances, many consumers avoid Fukushima produce fearing it is contaminated, dealing another blow to the region’s farming industry.

Dismantling the crippled reactors will take up to four decades, and Japan remains undecided over whether to continue using nuclear energy to power the world’s third-largest economy.

Only two of its 50 commercial nuclear reactors have been restarted, with strict safety standards and political nervousness keeping the others offline.

However, with no commercially viable alternatives available and staunchly pro-nuclear Abe at the helm, analysts say it is likely just a matter of time before some units are fired up again.

This story has been viewed 1720 times.
TOP top