Photo Essay: Revisiting Fukushima

Dr. Ochi stares where a house used to stand

Dr. Sae Ochi stands at the spot where a house once stood, but was wiped away by the tsunami in Isobe, Japan. Ochi works at Soma Central Hospital, and monitors the effect the Fukushima Power Plant explosion might have had on the health of residents in Fukushima, Japan.

A whole body counter that measures radiation

A whole body counter sits in a small room in Soma Central Hospital. The whole body counters are being used by hospitals in Fukushima to measure radiation in children and adults. Dr. Sae Ochi uses the scanning device for measuring radiation, and countering resident’s fears about radiation.

A road near the coast

A single road once lined with homes runs along the coast of Fukushima Prefecture. The tsunami caused by the Great East Japan Earthquake wiped away the homes in Isobe, Japan. The revitalization efforts in Isobe have been slow, and the area remains empty except for a few construction vehicles.

Shinichi Katahira’s employees tend to peach trees

Shinichi Katahira’s employees tend to peach trees in his orchard in Fukushima, Japan. Katahira wants to expand the orchard, but his family believes he should quit, and focus on his other farms.

Katahira holds a peach bud in his hand

Shinichi Katahira, a peach farmer from Fukushima, Japan, holds a peach bud in his hand while he explains the farming process in his orchard. The negative stigmatization about radiation in Fukushima has lowered the market price for fruit. Farmers facing the change in their business are considering expanding their farms, or quitting.

Three women step forward as they participate in the dance

Three women step forward as they participate in the dance around the yagura for the Obon festival in Tsuchiyu, Japan. Tsuchiyu was a tourist spot due to its hot springs, but was damaged by the Great East Japan Earthquake, and has lost many visitors. Tsuchiyu is attempting to rebuild itself after the earthquake, and the festival is a sign of the town’s efforts.

Sugimoto family that was evacuated from their home

Tokiko Sugimoto, 78, and her husband, Fumio Sugimoto, 80, home in Namie was destroyed by the tsunami, and they had to be evacuated when the Fukushima Daiichi power plant exploded. They had to be evacuated to the Sasaya Higashi Temporary Housing District in Fukushima. Life long resident of Ukedo, a small area in Namie town, all they have left from their home are photos.