You've probably read that Japan is lifting some of the evacuation orders for areas contaminated by Fukushima Daiichi:
Chikako Kawahara and Osamu Uchiyama. (February 28, 2017). SIX YEARS AFTER: 4 more districts in Fukushima set to be declared safe to return to. The Asahi Shimbun, http://www.asahi.com/ajw/articles/AJ201702280051.html
Evacuation orders will be lifted shortly [April 1] for four more municipalities in Fukushima Prefecture, but the prospect of residents returning to their old homes in huge numbers seems unlikely. ...The government intends to pay for the decontamination of certain areas within that zone so former residents can return. According to one estimate, the program would only cover about 5 percent of the entire area that is designated as difficult to return.
Notice that the government is not paying for ALL of the decontamination work and, as this article below argues, has no solution for managing radioactive waste:
Decontamination work in Fukushima Pref. far from finished business (March 11, 201). The Mainichi, http://mainichi.jp/english/articles/20170311/p2a/00m/0na/027000c
... the government's decontamination plan in this prefecture is fast approaching the end of its first phase at the end of March. As a consequence of the decontamination project -- and the fact that radioactive material decays over time -- radiation levels in Fukushima Prefecture have declined to some extent.
However, in certain areas of the prefecture, radiation levels continue to be high, and the issue of what to do with decontamination waste still needs to be tackled. The government does plan to carry out decontamination work in the neglected "difficult-to-return" evacuation zones in fiscal 2017, but local residents are skeptical that the end is near.This is a concerning set of articles. Local officials are responsible for clean-up of areas measuring up to 20 millisieverts a year of annual "external" exposure.
To date, the Environment Ministry has carried out decontamination work in 11 municipalities across the prefecture subject to evacuation orders. However, no decontamination has been done yet in the "difficult-to-return" zones. In other municipalities, where the radiation dose is 0.23 microsieverts per hour or higher, decontamination work has been performed by the relevant local government office.
I don't know whether the money for local officials' clean-up efforts comes from national government or from TEPCO. I certainly hope that local officials don't have to bear those costs directly.
Can you imagine having your environment contaminated, being forced to leave because of that contamination and becoming stigmatized in the process?
Then you are encouraged to return to regions that are patchily decontaminated, with rains and winds continuously distributing radioactive particles throughout the environment.
And you are told that, by the way, ongoing contamination efforts will be the responsibility of your community and there still is no solution for the piles and piles of radioactive waste stuffed into what appear to be plastic trash bags.
Of course, this approach to managing radioactive waste has been ongoing since the age of fission began, with all countries participating in the nuclear club liable for disregarding the full scale of health and reproductive impacts produced by chronic exposure to "low-level" radioactive waste, waste for which there is no lasting solution.