Online archive for 3/11 Tohoku disasters opens Thursday

JIJI

The internal affairs ministry said Tuesday that it will open a website Thursday to allow people to search for photos and video clips related to the March 11, 2011, earthquake, tsunami and nuclear disasters.

The online archive contains some 200,000 items related to the disasters, together with about 2 million items about other earthquakes and nuclear power.

The website is designed to pass down records of the disasters to future generations, help rebuild badly affected areas and take measures against disasters.

An English version of the site is also available.

The site was developed jointly by the National Diet Library and the ministry in cooperation with 27 institutions, including universities, media agencies and Tokyo Electric Power Co., whose Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant experienced three reactor core meltdowns linked to 3/11.

The data were collected through access to existing databases and by gathering new material.

Accessible data related to the March 2011 disasters comprise 63,000 photos, about 3,000 video clips and some 134,000 printed items.

These include hand-written newspapers made by the Ishinomaki Hibi Shimbun, a local newspaper in Ishinomaki, Miyagi Prefecture, that was hit by the tsunami. The archive also contains witness accounts and video clips of Tepco meetings held shortly after the Fukushima nuclear crisis started.

Internal affairs minister Yoshitaka Shindo said the website is “a precursory project that enables easy access to intellectual property spreading on the Internet.”

The website is at kn.ndl.go.jp .