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Fukushima Anniversary

Fukushima disaster town looks to hydrogen tech for rebirth

Tiny Namie bets on clean fuel stations and renewable-powered industry

A "green hydrogen" facility was set up by the government-run New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization in collaboration with Toshiba, Iwatani and Tohoku Electric Power.

TOKYO -- A small town in Fukushima Prefecture is betting on hydrogen technology to attract new businesses and residents displaced by the devastating earthquake and tsunami ten years ago, with Toshiba and Sumitomo Corp. already moving in.

The town of Namie was once home to more than 20,000 people before the disaster on March 11, 2011. Today, only about 1,500 came back despite 17,000 people still listed as official residents. The entire town was shuttered for years due to high levels of radioactivity from the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, where reactors melted down after the tsunami. The town only partially reopened in 2017.

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