It has now been three weeks since the devastating earthquake and tsunami in Japan. Here are the latest facts and figures on the crisis, culled from official sources via Relief Web.
According the government of Japan: The number of deaths is 12,087, the number of the injured is 2,876, and the number of missing is 15,552. The number of those evacuated is approximately 206,400.
From the government of Japan:
So far, rescue and medical support teams from 20 countries and regions (Australia, China, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Israel, Italy, Mexico, Mongolia, New Zealand, the ROK, Russia, Singapore, South Africa, Switzerland, Taiwan, Turkey, the U.K., the U.S.) as well as and the UNOCHA, an IAEA expert team, and the WFP have arrived Japan and have been operating in disaster-stricken areas. (The list includes countries and regions which have already left the site.) Surveys have been conducted by UN organizations and other institutions related to disaster relief. As of March 31, Japan has received relief goods from 29 countries/regions and international organizations.
From the World Health Organization:
Is there a risk of radioactive food contamination?
-Yes, there is a risk of exposure as a result of contamination in food.
-However, contaminated food would have to be consumed over prolonged periods to represent a risk to human health.
-The presence of radioactivity in some vegetables and milk has been confirmed and some of the initial food monitoring results show radioactive iodine detected in concentrations above Japanese regulatory limits. Radioactive caesium has also been detected.
-Local government authorities have advised residents to avoid these food and have implemented measures to prevent their sale and distribution.
From the International Atomic Energy Agency:
Overall at the Fukushima Daiichi plant, the situation remains very serious.
On 2 April, transferring of water from the Unit 1 condenser storage tank to the surge tank of the suppression pool was completed in preparation for transferring water in the basement of the Unit 1 turbine building to the condenser. Also, on 2 April transferring of water from the Unit 2 condenser storage tank to the surge tank of the suppression pool was started in preparation for transferring water in the basement of the Unit 1 turbine building to the condenser…
On 2 April, deposition of iodine-131 was detected in 7 prefectures ranging from 4 to 95 becquerel per square metre. Deposition of cesium-137 in 6 prefectures was reported on 2 April ranging from 15 to 47 becquerel per square metre. Reported gamma dose rates in the 45 prefectures showed no significant changes compared to yesterday.
Most of the previously imposed recommendations for restrictions on drinking water have been lifted. As of 2 April, one recommendation for the restriction based on iodine-131 concentration was in place in one village in the Fukushima prefecture, which applied for infants only. Meanwhile, also in this village, the iodine-131 level in drinking water has dropped below 100 becquerel per litre, which is the recommended restriction level for intake by infants. The restriction is still in place as a precautionary measure of the local authority.
Currently, one IAEA monitoring team is working in the Fukushima region. On 2 April, measurements were made at 7 locations at distances of 32 to 62 km, North and Northwest to the Fukushima nuclear power plant. The dose rates ranged from 0.6 to 4.5 microsievert per hour. At the same locations, results of beta-gamma contamination measurements ranged from 0.09 to 0.46 megabecquerel per square metre.