What particular loss or damage cannot be recovered or repaired in 2011 Japan earthquake and tsunami?

Q: What particular loss or damage cannot be recovered or repaired in 2011 Japan earthquake and tsunami?

The 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami resulted in significant human casualties, infrastructure damage, and long-term environmental impacts. Here are some examples of losses that cannot be fully recovered or repaired:

  1. Human Lives: The earthquake and tsunami caused a tremendous loss of life. According to the National Police Agency of Japan, the total number of fatalities reached 15,894, with an additional 2,539 missing as of September 2018 (National Police Agency, 2018). Unfortunately, the loss of human lives cannot be recovered or repaired.
  2. Psychological Trauma: The disaster had a profound impact on the survivors, leading to psychological trauma and long-term mental health issues. Many people experienced the loss of family members, friends, and homes, which can leave lasting emotional scars (Matsumoto et al., 2016). While psychological support and counseling services can help individuals cope, the emotional damage caused by the event cannot be fully repaired.
  3. Cultural Heritage: The earthquake and tsunami also caused significant damage to historical and cultural landmarks. For example, the iconic Hōryū-ji temple complex in Nara, which is a UNESCO World Heritage site, suffered damage to its pagoda (Mainichi Shimbun, 2011). While efforts have been made to restore and rebuild these cultural treasures, the original structures and artifacts may have been lost forever.
  4. Environmental Impact: The tsunami caused widespread devastation along the coastline, including damage to ecosystems and contamination of soil and water. The release of radioactive materials from the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant further compounded the environmental impact (Machida et al., 2014). The long-term effects of the radiation and the ecological disruption cannot be completely repaired.


Matsumoto, K., Sakuma, A., Ueda, I., Nagao, A., Takahashi, Y., Kitamura, T., ... & Yamanouchi, K. (2016). Mental health care and psychological support after the Great East Japan Earthquake in 2011. Psychiatry and Clinical Neurosciences, 70(12), 564-573.

Mainichi Shimbun. (2011, April 16). Cultural assets damaged by March 11 quake, tsunami. Retrieved from https://web.archive.org/web/20110420072538/http://mdn.mainichi.jp/features/news/20110416p2a00m0na012000c.html

Machida, M., Yamada, M., Calvache, M. L. S., Furuta, M., Sasaki, Y., Uchida, S., & Yoshida, S. (2014). Environmental impact of the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake and tsunami on riverside coastal ecosystem. Journal of Hydrology, 509, 194-207.

National Police Agency. (2018). Damage Situation and Police Countermeasures. Retrieved from https://www.npa.go.jp/archive/keibi/biki/higaijokyo_e.pdf

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