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Tragedy Then and Now

Tragedy Then and Now

March 11, 2016

Namiwake Shrine in the city of Sendai stands in testament to the forces that have shaped the landscape, culture, and history of Japan. The shrine, whose name means “parted wave,” was built to commemorate a tsunami that devastated the region in 869 A.D. Five years ago today, a magnitude 9 earthquake spawned another tsunami that struck the nearby coastline, claiming more than 15,000 lives and setting in motion events that led to the meltdown at the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant, which continues to leak radioactive water into the Pacific today. (Photo by Ken Kostel, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution)

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