How is life getting back to normal in Fukushima 10 years after the disaster?

How is life getting back to normal in Fukushima 10 years after the disaster?
Copyright euronews
By Euronews
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The Kato family are farmers in Fukushima, they are one of the groups that suffered the most after the disaster 10 years ago because consumer confidence had collapsed. But now they say they don't see much apprehension over their produce and they're happy to be back home.


In March 2011, 88 000 people lived in the Fukushima Prefecture before an extremely powerful tsunami struck the region, destroying much of the area and the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant.

The last 10 years have been spent decontaminating and decommissioning the plant. There are also many more years of work ahead. Today, 14 000 people live in the reopened areas and the zones that are out of bounds continue to get smaller. Okuma is a new district and construction work there is ongoing despite the pandemic.

Buildings have been decontaminated, polluted land has been evacuated or covered with healthy soil. According to experts, radioactivity can only be found on the site of the former power plant, but elsewhere in the region, there is no more radioactivity than in any of the world's major world capitals.

Everywhere installations measure the radioactivity in the area. The public is constantly informed, thanks to the analyses carried out by the Fukushima Research Center.

Locals who have returned to Fukushima told Euronews about how they feel living there again. Yamamoto Chiyoko says that she has noticed a big difference, "when I came back to Okuma there was really nothing, just shelters and temporary stores, but now big buildings have been built".

Kato Koji and his family returned to Fukushima only two weeks after the disaster. They're farmers who produce rice, serve homemade beer and love their land. Kato Emi has even become an ambassador for the local produce throughout the world. She says that she has experienced very little resistance to the local products, but straight after the disaster farmers there suffered greatly.

Kato Emi tells us that she has four children and she would be happy if they could say they are proud to be born in Fukushima.

To watch the full report on the inhabitants of Fukushima 10 years after the disaster, click on the media player above.

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