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The location of the power plant disaster and the story of its continued effects

Fukushima Dai-ichi Nuclear Power Plant.
1. High levels of radioactive cesium-137 released in the 2011 accident were transported along the coast by ocean currents.
2. Waves and tides brought the cesium from ocean waters onto the coast, where cesium became stuck to the surfaces of sand grains and entered brackish water beneath beaches.
3. More recent waves and tides brought in salty ocean water, making brackish water beneath beaches salty enough to release cesium from the sand, and the cesium was carried back into the ocean. (Illustration by Natalie Renier, © Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution)

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