PBS NewsHour Science Correspondent Miles O’Brien reports on the continued impact of Japan’s nuclear plant meltdown

February 27, 2014 at 4:35 PM EDT

Three years after a massive earthquake and subsequent tsunami triggered meltdowns at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant, PBS NewsHour Science Correspondent Miles O’Brien returned to Japan for an update on clean-up efforts and the continuing impact of the radioactive spill.

Friday, February 28: Inside Fukushima:  Covered head to toe in protective gear and wearing a respiration mask, Miles O’Brien offers NewsHour viewers a rare look inside one of the most dangerous places on earth – the damaged Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant.  There, he reports on on-going efforts to contain radiation-tainted water that continues to leak from the plant into the sea and efforts to remove and secure the nuclear fuel from the disabled reactors.

Wednesday, March 5: Fish Fears:  Radioactive water continues to leak from the Fukushima nuclear plant into the nearby harbor.  Now the plume of radioactive water is reaching across the Pacific to the US West Coast, fueling fears and speculation about the safety of Pacific fish. O’Brien speaks with marine scientists in both Japan and the US about the risks to sea life posed by the radioactive plume, and to what extent Americans who enjoy bluefin tuna from Japan should –or should not –be worried.

Friday, March 7: The Future of Nuclear Power:  Before the meltdown, Japan strongly embraced nuclear power.  But three years later, there is not one nuclear plant generating power in the country. Utilities and the current government are anxious to get them re-started by this summer.  But polls show that 80% of the Japanese people prefer they stay shut down forever.  O’Brien takes viewers inside the world’s largest nuclear power plant – also run by Tepco in Japan –to examine the technology and the issues facing the country’s nuclear future.

The reports are part of PBS NewsHour’s on-going coverage of science and technology.  Videos, transcripts and information about PBS NewsHour science reports and its Science Wednesday feature can be found on the PBS NewsHour Science Page.

Support for PBS NewsHour’s coverage of science is provided by the S.D. Bechtel Jr. Foundation, the Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation and the National Science Foundation.

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