As of the end of March, Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc. had paid more than ¥8 trillion in compensation (baishōkin) related to the Fukushima No. 1 reactor meltdowns of March 2011. About half of this money has gone to people living near the crippled reactors for "mental anguish" and the other half has gone to businesses whose livelihoods were destroyed or otherwise diminished by the disaster.

The payouts officially ended at the end of March, but Tepco is by no means out of the woods. There are numerous lawsuits against the company demanding additional compensation, and the central government has issued ¥13.5 trillion in bonds for interest-free loans to Tepco that are supposed to cover a wide range of expenses related to effects on residents and cleanup activities.

Tepco is supposed to pay back this money by 2051, and until then it's estimated that the government will have to pay bondholders more than ¥218 billion in interest — that is, if interest rates stay the same. This money, of course, will be covered by taxpayers.