The great Japan March 2011earthquake and tsunami will ever be remembered for the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear catastrophe. But the debris washed from the devastated land out into the sea is truly a gift that continues to give. We have collected references calculating that more than 30,000 tons of debris will arrive on or near the US wet coast in 2013.
The Japanese government has allocated $6 million (480 million yen) to the United States and Canada to help cover clean up expenses. We are as yet not certain who will be receiving these funds or if they have already been disbursed. In any event, we are once again reminded of the fragility of whole nations in the face of natural disaster. A few more of these and there will be no more surfing on the west coast.
Estimates released in April said about 40,000 tons of debris could reach within 10 kilometers of the North American coast in next February.
The latest estimate involves new calculation methods, as well as more accurate meteorological data.
Tsunami debris may reach US next month The massive debris from the tsunami that hit northeastern Japan last year may reach North America's west coast in December. Japan's Environment Ministry says that's two months later than previously predicted. TEPCO explains increase in decontamination staff Tokyo Electric Power Company has revealed a new action plan to clean up areas contaminated by radiation from the Fukushima nuclear power plant accident. NHK Documentary excerpt Aug. 11/2012
The earlier study only predicted the amount of debris that would reach waters within 10 km of the North American shoreline, but the new calculations provide a more accurate projection by also predicting how many tons are likely to reach the continent's shores.