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After Fallout

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Activists find their voice after 3.11

Protestors still gather weekly in Tokyo

Writeen by Sydney MacDonald

The chant “Protect our children from nuclear power plants” filled the street corners in front of the Diet, Japan’s capitol building, on Friday, May 26, 2017. Protesters who are part of the Metropolitan Coalition Against Nukes have been coming to demonstrate on this block for the past 247 Fridays to express their opposition of nuclear energy.

Last in line

Taking over the family business

Video by Jack Ginsburg

Shinichi Yamata left a good paying job as a CPA in the United States to take over his father's oyster business in Tokyo. With no children of his own, the 160 - year -old business is now his responsibility. 

Tomodachi of Tokyo

Tomodachi of Tokyo

Click on each picture to learn more

Mayumi Suzuki

Mayumi Suzuki

" father would be proud ..."

Yasuhiko Numata

Yasuhiko Numata

Families fear food from Fukushima.

Shinichi Yamada

Shinichi Yamada

“If people start buying, I think we have a chance.”

Suzuka Hirota

Suzuka Hirota

“There was irony with the beautiful sky”

Katsushi Yasoda

Katsushi Yasoda

The industry will never be what it was ...

Hiroshi Koizami and Masamine Koizami

Hiroshi Koizami and Masamine Koizami

Supermarkets continue to monopolize the Japanese food industry

Yasuo Hayakawa

Yasuo Hayakawa

He loves all the fish he sells equally.

Written by Jana Wiegand

Japan’s media tug of war: 

Facts and self-censorship

Written by Katy Spence

Asahi TV had a scoop for the late night airing of Hodo Station, but the chief editor held back.


Leaked emails showed that the prime minister promoted a major project backed by a friend and that he pressured the agency to accelerate its acceptance. It was an abuse of power by the prime minister, and it was clearly a scoop. Still, the chief of the news division needed to confirm it was true. The newsroom was haunted by a 2006 incident involving a fake email and incomplete reporting. The lawmaker who had shared that email -- he didn’t know it was fake -- committed suicide several years later. The press hadn’t done due diligence to check the email’s veracity...

Taking over the family business

By Rehana Asmi

The Triple Disaster: Explained

An earthquake, tsunami, and nuclear

meltdown that altered Japan's national psyche

By Rehana Asmi

It all started on Friday, March 11, 2011, at 2:46 p.m. when an earthquake shook the northeast coast of Japan. The tremor was the largest earthquake  recorded in Japan’s history, measuring 9.0 on the Richter scale. Buildings shuddered, and roads buckled under the stress...

The day of the earthquake

Video by Katy Spence

As told by UM's Japanese students

We couldn't begin to understand how it felt to live in Japan during the 2011 earthquake, so we asked students who were there.

Compensating a triple disaster

The Good, the bad, and the complicated

Written by Zachariah Bryan

It comes as no surprise that compensation system for the victims of Japan’s triple disaster on 3/11 — earthquake, tsunami, nuclear plant meltdown — is large, unwieldy and highly controversial...

Libby in transition

The EPA is leaving and taking its money with it; now, residents must face life post-environmental disaster

By Zachariah Bryan

In preparation for reporting on the ongoing recovery efforts in Japan post 3/11, University of Montana journalism students made their way to Libby, where they reported on how the community has recovered from asbestos contamination.


While the scale of disaster is different, there are many similarities between what is currently happening in the Fukushima Prefecture and what happened in Libby. Both are dealing with contaminants (radiation and asbestos) that are invisible and odorless, and which over time can present life-threatening health problems in residents. They both have gone through large-scale cleanup efforts of residential and commercial properties, dealing with questions of what to do with waste and when it can be called safe. And both, as a result of the cleanup efforts, have seen a surge of investment and workers.

In the case of Libby, this investment is about to dry up and the community, which has already seen the lumber and mining industries leave, is figuring out what comes next. Zachariah Bryan reports...

So what is nuclear power?

And what makes its radiation so dangerous?

By Sammi Queenan

Nuclear energy occurs when atoms split apart (fission) or when atoms combine (fusion). Fusion occurs naturally in stars like the Sun. Inside the Sun, fusion reactions continue for billions of years and give off enough energy to make the Earth a warm and bright place. Fission, on the other hand, is a form of radioactive decay, and humans have learned how to control fission reactions to produce enough energy to power everything from navy submarines to entire cities...

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