Costs of the nuclear accident are enormous, with the latest estimates as high as 81 trillion yen, which may ultimately have to be paid by the public.
According to Japanese government estimates from December 2016, the cost of decommissioning the damaged TEPCO Daiichi nuclear power plant, plus processing of contaminated water, compensation, decontamination of soil, and construction of interim storage facilities, was estimated at 21.5 trillion yen, double the original estimate of 11 trillion yen.
That number included 8 trillion yen for decommissioning and contaminated water, 7.9 trillion yen for compensation, and 5.6 trillion yen for decontamination and interim storage facilities.
However, those estimates include considerable uncertainty because many details had not yet been decided, such as how to dispose of mountains of debris and radioactive waste.
A more recent estimate by the Japan Center for Economic Research, a private research institute, puts the costs at 35 to 81 trillion yen, significantly higher than the government estimates.
TEPCO has not been able to cover the entire cost of the accident, so a significant share of the costs will be borne by the public.