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15 April, 2019

Okuma Town Becomes First Nuclear Hosting Municipality to Have Evacuation Orders Partially Lifted

On April 10, the Japanese government lifted evacuation orders for the Okawara and Nakayashiki Districts of Okuma Town (Fukushima Prefecture), issued after the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear accident of March 11, 2011. It was the first time an order was lifted for either of the two municipalities hosting the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant(NPP): Okuma and Futaba Towns.

The Okawara District of Okuma Town had been designated an area where “living is not permitted,” while Nakayashiki District was designated an area where “an evacuation order will soon be lifted.” Together, the two account for approximately 38 percent of the combined area of the two towns (approximately 79 square kilometers). Only 367 people (138 households), some 3.5 percent of the combined town populations of 10,341, were registered as residents as of the end of March. A new town office constructed in the Okawara District had its opening ceremony on April 14, and is slated to begin operations on May 7 (after the ten-day Golden Week holiday period), with a staff of one hundred persons. The available housing for staff members, however, is limited to just twenty-six units, so most wi...more
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