Millennium Post

Japan to provide money for debris clearing

Japan to provide money for debris clearing
The Japanese government has decided to provide USD 6 million to the United States and Canada to help pay for the disposal of debris that continues to be washed up on their coasts following the deadly tsunami triggered by the March 2011 earthquake, government officials said on Friday.

Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda is set to announce the plan during a meeting with the US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on the sidelines of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum in Russia's Vladivostok, they said. Although there are no international rules on objects washed ashore, countries or municipal governments where such objects end up disposing them off at their expense.

The government is planning the financial contribution mainly as a return for the support provided by the US army in the disaster-hit region. According to an estimate by Japan's Environment Ministry, about 5 million tons of debris was swept into the Pacific from the three hardest-hit prefectures of Iwate, Miyagi and Fukushima in northeastern Japan. Although 70 per cent of it is believed to have sunk in waters off Japan, some 1.5 million tons has drifted much further offshore. Since March, debris have washed up on the west coasts of North America, and more flotsam is expected to arrive from October as a result of the currents.
Agencies

Agencies

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