Fukushima: Catastrophe, Compensation, and Justice in Japan
23 Pages Posted: 17 Apr 2013
Date Written: 2013
Well before the Fukushima disaster of March 11, 2011, governments in the developed world struggled with victim compensation in cases of environmental contamination, harms caused by pharmaceutical products, terrorist attacks, and more. All of those are important precedents to Fukushima, but none of them approach the breadth of harms resulting from the triple disaster of huge earthquake, massive tsunami, and nuclear meltdown now known in Japan as 3/11. With close to 20,000 people dead or missing, one million homes fully destroyed or seriously damaged, and 100,000 people displaced, getting those whose lives were affected by the events in Fukushima back on their feet is a daunting task. How should Japanese society, and the Japanese state, respond? How much compensation, if any, should be offered to the victims? What types of losses should be considered compensable? Which institutions are best equipped to evaluate and manage a system of redress?
Keywords: natural disasters, earthquakes, tsunami, environment, nuclear energy, electric power, damages, victim compensation, comparative law
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