Reaction to Fukushima
On March 11, a devastating earthquake hit Japan and triggered a massive tsunami that left a wake of destruction, including major damage to the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant. The aging plant consisted of six boiling-water reactors powering electrical generators. The 45-foot waves halted power and disabled a number of reactor cooling systems, leading to nuclear radiation leaks, hydrogen explosions, and most likely, significant core melting. Radiological contamination ensued and Japan mandated a 12.5-mile-radius exclusion zone around the plant.