U.S. facing 221,000 tons of debris


A total of 221,000 tons of debris from the tsunami that crashed into Tohoku in 2011 is expected to wash up on North America by October, the Environment Ministry said.

The cumulative volume of debris traversing the Pacific and reaching the west coast of the continent is likely to reach 30,000 tons by April and then increase gradually through October, the ministry said Friday.

In previous projections released in November, the ministry suggested the tsunami debris would start to increase substantially from December and total 33,000 tons by June. An estimated 1.3 million tons of the debris is floating around the Pacific, but some of it is expected to sink before reaching North America’s shores, ministry officials said.