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Nothing can be more powerful than nature. The nature is blessed by the almighty God and it has given us such scenic beauties, amazing hill stations, hot deserts and drizzling plateaus. It is considered as the most beautiful creation of God but can cause drastic damages at times. The news that has dominated every news outlet over the last few months is earthquake, tsunami, and now potential for radioactive fallout in Japan.
Tsunamis are a frequent occurrence in Japan; approximately 195 events have been recorded. An earthquake (also known as a quake, tremor or temblor) is the result of a sudden release of energy in the Earth's crust that creates seismic waves. The seismicity or seismic activity of an area refers to the frequency, type and size of earthquakes experienced over a period of time. Earthquakes are measured using observations from seismometers. The moment magnitude (or the partly obsolete Richter magnitude, numerically similar over the range of validity of the Richter scale) of an earthquake is conventionally reported, with magnitude 3 or lower earthquakes being mostly almost imperceptible and magnitude 7 and over potentially causing serious damage over large areas, depending on their depth. The largest earthquakes in historic times have been of magnitude slightly over 9, although there is no limit to the possible magnitude. The most recent large Northeast region Pacific Ocean offshore earthquake was a 9.0-magnitude undersea off the coast of Japan that occurred on Friday, 11 March 2011. AIM.
2. The aim of this writing is to appraise largest earthquake followed by tsunami and nuclear disaster in Japan EARTHQUAKE AND TSUNAMI IN JAPAN 3. The 9.0-magnitude (MW) undersea mega thrust earthquake occured, with its epicenter approximately 72 kilometers (45 mi) east of the Oshika Peninsula of Tōhoku, Japan, lasting approximately six minutes. The nearest major city to the quake was Sendai, Honshu, Japan, 130 km (81 mi) away. The quake occurred 373 km (232 mi) from Tokyo. The main earthquake was preceded by a number of large foreshocks, and multiple aftershocks were reported afterwards. One minute prior to the effects of the earthquake being felt in Tokyo, the Earthquake Early Warning system, which includes more than 1,000 seismometers in Japan, sent out warnings of impending strong shaking to millions. This was possible because the damaging seismic S-waves, traveling at 4 km (2.5 mi) per second, took about 90 seconds to travel the 373 km (232 mi) to Tokyo. The early warning is believed by the Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA) to have saved many lives. Tsunami 4. The term tsunami comes from the Japanese composed of the two kanji (tsu) meaning "harbor" and (nami), meaning "wave” and at one time incorrectly referred to as a tidal wave, is a series of water waves caused by the displacement of a large volume of a
b. nuclear energy has been a national strategic priority in Japan. including the entire Pacific coast of North and South America from Alaska to Chile. Kyodo News Agency reported that some 2. some of whom were separated from their families because the earthquake occurred during the school day. A tsunami wave flooded Sendai Airport about 1 hour after the initial quake. This is because 40% of the electricity used in the greater Tokyo area is now supplied by reactors in the Niigata and Fukushima prefectures.787 deaths. and 16. Transport: Japan's transport network suffered severe disruptions. Estimates of the cost of the damage range well into the tens of billions of US dollars. 11 March 2011 Duration6 minutes Magnitude9. 4. Save the Children reports that as many as 100. which normally provides approximately 40 GW of electricity. On 14 March. 2. The tsunami propagated across the Pacific. All railway services were suspended in Tokyo. usually an ocean. c. with almost no parts of any structures left standing. with fuel imports accounting for 61% of 2 . announced that it can currently provide only about 30 GW. Narita and Haneda Airport both suspended operations after the quake. Many sections of Tōhoku Expressway serving northern Japan were damaged. The nation is heavily dependent on imported fuel. Date14:46:23. NUCLEAR EXPLOSION AND RADIATION 7. Video footage of the worst affected towns shows little more than piles of rubble. Telecommunication: Cellular and landline phone service suffered major disruptions in the affected area. 14.000 bodies were found on two shores in Miyagi Prefecture. Tsunamis are a frequent occurrence in Japan.991 people missing Damage 6.0 Mw Depth32 km Casualties12. These numbers are expected to increase.244 people missing across eighteen prefectures. . The degree and extent of damage caused by the earthquake and resulting tsunami were enormous. The National Police Agency has officially confirmed 10.000 children have been uprooted from their homes. Several nuclear and conventional power plants went offline after the earthquake. Since 1973. Casualties 5. around 4. with casualties estimated to reach tens of thousands. The Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO). Electricity: According to Tōhoku Electric Power (TEP). The expressway did not reopen to general public use until 24 March 2011. with most of the damage being caused by the tsunami.body of water. a. The earthquake having damaged portions of several undersea cable systems landing in the affected regions. before-and-after satellite photographs of devastated regions show immense damage to many regions.661 injured.804 deaths.776 injured. approximately 195 events have been recorded.4 million households in northeastern Japan were left without electricity.
A state of emergency was also declared at the Fukushima II nuclear power plant about 11 km (7 mi) south.000 times normal levels.593 mi) coastline and stand up to 12 meters (39 ft) high.9 mi) of the Fukushima II plant. of the nuclear energy group at Japan's Institute of Energy Economics. On 14 March it was reported that a cooling system pump for this reactor had stopped working.6% (16% for the week) and other market also. this would not result in the release of significant radiation. but the reactor itself was not damaged in the explosion. Onagawa Nuclear Power Plant and Tōkai nuclear power stations.751-kilometer (21. Other Nuclear Power Plant 9. Japan rode one of the great 3 . The Fukushima I. news of rising radiation levels caused the Nikkei to drop over 1. Although Japan has invested the equivalent of billions of dollars on anti-tsunami seawalls which line at least 40% of its 34. 15 March. Fukushima II. Japan declared a state of emergency following the failure of the cooling system at the Fukushima I Nuclear Power Plant. and that radiation levels outside the plant are up to 8 times normal levels. Explosion of Fukushima I & II Nuclear Power Plants and Impacts 8. a large explosion. blew away the roof and outer walls of the Reactor 1 building. the tsunami simply washed over the top of some seawalls.energy production. Residents living within a 20 km (12 mi) radius of the Fukushima I plant were evacuated. Economic Impacts 10. thought to be caused by the buildup of hydrogen gas. This brings the total number of problematic reactors to six. consisting of a total eleven reactors. collapsing some in the process. so plant workers could continue their work.000 points or 10. A fire from the turbine section of the Onagawa Nuclear Power Plant following the earthquake. Now. There has been concern about the ability of Japan's nuclear plants to withstand seismic activity. as well as residents within 3 km (1. As of 16 March 2011. The original Asian success story. Officials from the Japanese Nuclear and Industrial Safety Agency have reported that radiation levels inside the plant are up to 1. Japan is in the unenviable position of being one of the few nations in recent history to have seen a striking reversal of economic fortune. Some analysts are predicting that the total recovery costs could reach ¥10 trillion ($122 billion). releasing a large cloud of dust and vapor. On Tuesday. were automatically shut down following the earthquake. On 12 March. CONCLUSION 11. Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) is trying to reduce the pressure within the plants by venting contaminated steam from the reactor vessels into the atmosphere. The number 2 reactor at Tōkai Nuclear Power Plant was shut down automatically. According to Tomoko Murakami. The government raised the national safety standard governing radiation exposure from 100 to 250 mSv per year. Two others are reported missing. there are 55 operating nuclear reactors in Japan with a number of others in construction or three in number being planned. five plant workers have died and 22 others have been injured.
approximately 195 events have been recorded. In light of above discussions. EFFECTS: ECONOMY WATER TOURISM AIR ROUTES TOKYO — Disaster-hit Sendai Airport. Teams of US service personnel who specialise in re-opening stricken air strips have been at the airport since a few days after the tsunami hit. radiated People. Infrastructure. following suggestions are recommended: a. NHK. 4 . the self-defence force. The opening will provide a boost to an area constrained by road closures and the suspension of bullet train services to Sendai. will restart flights from Haneda and Osaka the same day. according to the World Bank. will reopen next week. the airport is being opened sooner than originally expected. ANA said in a statement that it would start three daily round trip "relief services" to Tokyo Haneda from April 13. JAL. Japan has had the world’s second-largest economy for much of the last four decades. water and debris that scattered planes from runways.speculative stock and property bubbles of all time in the 1980s to become the first Asian country to challenge the long dominance of the West. which was closed after being inundated by the March 11 tsunami. Sendai Airport was slammed by the wall of water that ravaged Japan's northeast coastline on March 11. "As a result of efforts aiding recovery by the Japanese Ministry of Land. Japan is most strong economic country of the world. with the facility badly damaged in a torrent of mud. the US military and other organisations. b. and Japan Satellite Television suspended their usual programming to provide ongoing coverage of the situation. RECOMMENDATIONS 12. The government has mobilized the Japan Self-Defense Forces in various earthquake disaster zones. Various other nationwide Japanese TV networks also broadcast uninterrupted coverage of the disaster. All Nippon Airways and Japan Airlines on Friday said they would restart flights next week to and from the airport. though the suspension of some other routes has been extended until the end of May. which will reopen to some commercial services on Wednesday. Japan's national public broadcaster. Though it is the largest tsunami in the history of Japan. And during the 1980s. which recently emerged from bankruptcty." ANA said in a statement. there was even talk about Japan’s economy some day overtaking that of the United States. Tsunamis are a frequent occurrence in Japan. Transport and Tourism. more than a month after the biggest recorded earthquake ever to hit Japan.
The water is being dumped to make room in storage tanks for more highly radioactive water from Reactor Number 2. with a preliminary magnitude of 7. The operator of the disabled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant was preparing to inject nitrogen into a reactor containment vessel there as it continued to try to bring the plant under control. Live Updates on The Lede blog. April 3 Four years ago. and more than 14.500 tons of water contaminated with low levels of radiation from the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant into the Pacific Ocean. the cause of the quake and readers' photos. as traces of radiation were found in Tokyo's water and in water pouring from the reactors into the ocean. it was the most powerful quake ever to hit the country. There were tsunami warnings. it also faced the worst nuclear emergency since Chernobyl. explosions and leaks of radioactive gas took place in three reactors at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station that suffered partial meltdowns. shepherding a group of about 1. but no large waves were expected. April 4 Power company officials said they would release almost 11. a map of the areas of damage.000 people remained housed in temporary shelters. Multimedia: see what happens in a meltdown. Now town officials are consumed with the evacuation of Futaba’s 6.200 people listed as missing in the evacuation zone around the crippled Fukushima nuclear power plant as a powerful aftershock struck off the east coast. 5 . implying that the damage was even worse than previously thought. April 5 United States government engineers sent to help with the crisis in Japan are warning that the troubled nuclear plant there is facing a wide array of fresh threats that could persist indefinitely.0 on the Richter scale. satellite before and after photos. and that in some cases are expected to increase as a result of the very measures being taken to keep the plant stable. As of April 7. More than 160.900 residents.4. an earthquake struck off the coast of Japan. Japanese officials turned to increasingly desperate measures. 2011.After clearing the runway of debris they have been using the once-bustling airport to ferry in relief supplies by C-130 Hercules transport planes. churning up a devastating tsunami that swept over cities and farmland in the northern part of the country and set off warnings as far away the west coast of the United States and South America. releasing radioactive material directly into the atmosphere. although there may be some overlap between the two groups. The move was aimed at preventing the possibility of stored-up hydrogen from exploding at the plant’s No. officials in the sleepy town of Futuba lobbied for an expansion of the nearby Fukushima nuclear plant. Recorded as 9. according to a confidential assessment prepared by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission. while spent fuel rods at another reactor overheated and caught fire.600.300 people from one makeshift sleeping place to the next. TRANSPORT ELECTRICITY EARTHQUAKE. the official death toll had been raised to 12.700 people were listed as missing. It is a tragic tale of an entire community evacuated in the wake of the world’s largest nuclear disaster since Chernobyl. April 6 The United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission said that some of the core of a stricken Japanese reactor had probably leaked from its steel pressure vessel into the bottom of the containment structure.000. tens of thousands of others evacuated their homes due to the nuclear crisis. TSUNAMI AND NUCLEAR CRISIS On March 11. Workers meanwhile resorted to desperate measures — including using sawdust and shredded newspaper — in an effort to stem a direct leak of an estimated seven tons an hour of radioactive water escaping from a pit near the reactor. including selected video clips and coverage from Twitter. The final toll is expected to reach nearly 20. As the nation struggled with a rescue effort. Crisis Timeline April 7 The police mounted a search for the 4. 1 reactor.
but at levels far below those at which action would have to be taken. raising questions about whether Japan’s evacuation zone should be expanded and whether the land might need to be abandoned. The Japanese government said the discovery of plutonium in the soil near the plant provided new evidence that the fuel in at least one of the plant’s reactors had experienced a partial meltdown. has been measured at levels that pose a longterm danger at one spot 25 miles from the crippled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant. indicate the presence of radioactive iodine from the troubled Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant in Japan. March 30 The recent flow of bad news from the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station has undermined the drumbeat of optimistic statements by government and company officials who have at times tried to reassure a nervous public that significant progress is at hand — only to come up short. the statistic reflected a decline in economic and political power. painting a picture of mixed panic. In January 2011. in the process shriveling from an economic Godzilla to little more than an afterthought in the global economy. March 28 Highly contaminated water is escaping a damaged reactor at the crippled nuclear power plant and could soon leak into the ocean. A deluge of contaminated water. The Economy For close to five decades after World War II. known as deflation. Japan's economy grew steadily through policies that closely aligned government and large manufacturers. Emails. Standard & Poor’s. A full meltdown of the fuel rods could release huge amounts of radiation into the environment. Wash. the Environmental Protection Agency said. 18.000 American personnel will scour a vast coastal area for 16. plutonium traces in the soil and an increasingly hazardous environment for workers at the plant have forced government officials to confront the reality that the emergency measures they have taken to keep nuclear fuel cool are producing increasingly dangerous side effects. Japan Before the Quake But the bubbles popped in the late 1980s and early 1990s. For Japan. cesium 137. heroism and frustration. The discovery raises the danger of further radiation leaks at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station and is a further setback to efforts to contain the nuclear crisis as workers find themselves in increasingly hazardous conditions. but disturbingly high radiation readings there as well as miles away continued to reinforce fears that Japan’s crisis was far from over.000 still listed as missing. China passed Japan to become the world’s second-largest economy behind the United States. In the second quarter of 2010. 6 . opening up another front in the battle to contain the world’s worst nuclear accident in decades.. blog posts and interviews give a glimpse into the struggle carried on by the largely anonymous workers trying to prevent the world’s second-worst nuclear calamity from becoming even more dire. the country’s nuclear regulator warned. the nation has been trapped in low growth and a corrosive downward spiral of prices.April 1 In the largest rescue mission ever carried out in Japan. a sharp reminder of the heavy burden plaguing the Japanese economy at levels that stand out even in an increasingly debt-ridden world. and Japan fell into a slow but relentless decline that neither enormous budget deficits nor a flood of easy money has reversed. downgraded the country's long-term sovereign debt. That formula reached its peak in the late 1980s. And the prospect of restoring automatic cooling systems anytime soon is fading.. March 31 A long-lasting radioactive element. For nearly a generation now.. Tests of milk samples taken last week in Spokane.000 Japanese and 7. March 29 Workers at Japan’s crippled nuclear plant piled up sandbags and readied emergency storage tanks to stop a fresh leak of highly contaminated water from reaching the ocean. the credit ratings agency. Read More. Workers made incremental progress at the stricken Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant.
because the rational way to act when prices are falling is to hold onto cash. With the Japanese stock market quadrupling and the yen rising to unimagined heights. S. after the United States. That was three levels below the highest possible rating. Japan is already saddled with a public debt twice the size of its economy.2 percent in the first quarter of 2010. and that its already high debt burden was likely to continue to rise further than it had anticipated before the financial crisis. The classic explanation of the evils of deflation is that it makes individuals and businesses less willing to use money. particularly outside the relative economic vibrancy of Tokyo.but a real estate bust brought growth to an end. But perhaps the most noticeable impact has been Japan’s crisis of confidence. the third-highest grade. the United States economy doubled in size to $14.” seemed ready to obliterate whole American industries.from AA. from automakers to supercomputers. driving down demand — and prices — even further. In late August 2010. In January 2011. a mighty — and threatening — “Japan Inc.7 trillion at current exchange rates. It meant another round of spending and adding to Tokyo's already substantial public debt. A new frugality is apparent among a generation of young Japanese. In 2010. famous golf courses (Pebble Beach) and iconic real estate (Rockefeller Center). and fewer choose to study abroad in America. Japan promised a host of measures in a bid to ignite its faltering economy and temper a punishingly strong yen. lowered its sovereign credit rating for Japan to AA. 7 . They refuse to buy big-ticket items like cars or televisions. as Japan faces the world’s largest government debt — around 200 percent of gross domestic product — a shrinking population and rising rates of poverty and suicide. While Japan remains in many ways a prosperous society. But in Japan. the credit ratings agency. which is now just a quarter of its value in 1989. Deflation has left a deep imprint on the Japanese. With the lower grade.& P. Its once voracious manufacturers now seem prepared to surrender industry after industry to hungry South Korean and Chinese rivals. In 1991. under pressure from the government. subconsciously coloring how the Japanese view the world. some economists worried about runaway government spending. the country's debt rating was on par with China’s. and was followed by a long intractable slump that lasted through the 1990s and into the 21st century. and in real estate. In the 1980s. In fact. fatalism and reduced expectations.’s first downgrade of Japanese government debt since 2002. Japan’s economy contracted in the fourth quarter of 2010 when compared with the previous three months. breeding generational tensions and a culture of pessimism.3 trillion yen ($1 trillion) budget through Parliament aimed at stimulating growth in the long-stagnant economy. which in 2010 overtook Japan as the world’s second-largest economy. gobbling up trophy properties like Hollywood movie studios (Universal Studios and Columbia Pictures). further eased its already easy monetary policy. which gains in value. During the same period. it faces an increasingly grim situation. who have known nothing but economic stagnation and deflation. and S. in downgrading Japan. Moody’s affirmed its Aa2 rank for Japan. Kan proposed new stimulus steps. the Japanese government pushed a record 92. Mr.. economists were predicting that Japan would overtake the United States as the world’s largest economy by 2010. with companies and individuals having lost the equivalent of trillions of dollars in the stock market. The decline has been painful for the Japanese. Japan’s economy remains the same size it was then: a gross domestic product of $5. It has bred a deep pessimism about the future and a fear of taking risks that make people instinctively reluctant to spend or invest. 2 economy. Although the Japanese economy grew at a healthy clip of 1. Japan’s companies dominated global business. while the Bank of Japan. where the average price of a home is the same as it was in 1983. raising the likelihood of increasing social security and pension obligations in the future.7 trillion. warned that the Japanese government had no “coherent strategy” to address its ballooning deficit. though analysts are optimistic about the country’s prospects for the rest of the year. nearly a generation of deflation has had a much deeper effect. Standard & Poors.& P. China overtook Japan to become the world’s No. And the future looks even bleaker. A rapidly aging population is adding to the country’s woes. In March 2010. in attempt to stimulate the economy.
. Thirty people died within a few weeks of the accident. radioactive material never escaped the containment vessel. And this.The news that has dominated every news outlet over the last 96 hours has been mind-boggling. there was no containment vessel. western Canada and the west coast. but perhaps several of the four reactors at Fukushima Nuclear Plant that were functioning. leading to a partial meltdown of the fuel rods inside the reactor. half-a-world away.000 were evacuated). But. and pain for those living through this firsthand. At Chernobyl. all prior to anything resembling the worst case scenario . many watching this unfold can't help but think of how this could affect us here.a serious meltdown of not just one. But.never enough to cause a detectable health effect in the general population".the first reaction is utter horror at the images that are pouring out of Northeastern Japan. both through recent explosions and any potential meltdown. to say the least . which sent the reactor out of control and caused two major explosions. we were hearing reports of very real dangers based on radiation levels near the plant reportedly double the amount that would constitute an emergency situation.the combined earthquake. Not unusually. the levels at this point are said to be no threat to health. if at all. Although radiation detection monitors here in the US are extremely sensitive (they detected levels from Chernobyl long before the USSR had announced the accident). For those outside of the region. 8 . what of a more serious problem. and would pick up even small traces of radioactive fallout. according to experts. Today we are hearing that the risk for residents in the United States is very low. A failure with the water pumps in its main reactor allowed pressure to build up inside the reactor core. and indeed around the globe . Temporary posts where residents were being checked for exposure were reporting well over 100 people in the area being exposed to some levels of radiation as of Tuesday. several thousand residents were put at long-term risk from exposure (even though 300. and the resultant radiation exposure was ". a design flaw in the reactor at Chernobyl caused a dramatic power surge during testing. Pennsylvania was not without some large-scale preparedness anxiety during the accident at TMI. When a relief valve opened to compensate for low water levels. such as the worst-case scenario of a meltdown? Most reports have been comparing this event to the two most well-known nuclear events in recent history: Chernobyl in April 1986 and Three-Mile Island in March 1979. As of Monday (14th) after Friday's disaster. and so the explosions sent radioactive material (including some 5% of the reactor core) into the atmosphere to be carried in the winds. and now potential for radioactive fallout in Japan. that winds carrying any potentially harmful radiation eastward from Japan would dissipate long before reaching Alaska. tsunami. the next natural thought for we humans is: Could it happen here? Given the now very prominent danger of the damaged nuclear reactors emitting dangerous levels of radiation. it failed to close allowing contaminated water to escape. In comparison.
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