A natural gas storage facility in Chiba (south of Tokyo),
which was affected by the Tōhoku earthquake
Fukushima Daiichi Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami damage
Following the Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami on 11 March 2011, Fukushima Daiichi was the second closest power station to the epicentre of the earthquake, after Onagawa Nuclear Power Plant. During this time, the Fukushima incident was labeled with a "Level 7" on the International Nuclear Event Scale (The highest level which can be obtained) with the Chernobyl disaster being the only other "Level 7" in history.
A diagram showing the level of flooding during the tsunami
There were no deaths caused by radiation exposure, while approximately 18,500 people died due to the earthquake and tsunami. The local fishermen became suspicious of the possible leaking of radioactive water which was taking place after the incident, which was later confirmed in July 2013, over two years later.
On 20th August 2013, in a further incident, it was announced that 300 tonnes of heavily contaminated water had leaked from a storage tank. The water was radioactive enough to be hazardous to nearby staff, and the leak was assessed as Level 3 on the International Nuclear Event Scale.
Masayuki Ono, general manager of Tokyo Electric Power Company (Tepco) which runs the plant, said: "We found a radiation level strong enough to give someone a five-year dose of radiation within one hour."
What do you think the Japanese government should do to prevent the situation getting any worse?
Will this lead to a total abandonment of Fukushima like Chernobyl?