Let me get right to the point. The answer is no.
While the extent of the destruction caused by the recent earthquake is immense in the Tohoku region, I would first like to point out that Greater Tokyo it not a crisis region. It experiences disruptions of public transport and may be subject to planned power outages, both due to the rationing of electric power, but that’s as far as it goes. No cause for alarm.
Furthermore, I have to say that I find the tone of international press coverage concerning the situation at the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plants very regrettable. It is needlessly sensationalistic and consciously raises fears of the population to heat up the anti-nuclear debate. Obviously, I follow the coverage of NHK and the press releases of the IAEA very closely. I quote from IAEA (their servers are still a bit unsteady):
At Unit 1, plant operators were able to restore a residual heat remover system, which is now being used to cool the reactor. Work is in progress to achieve a cold shutdown of the reactor.
Unit 3 is in a safe, cold shutdown.
The above-mentioned units pose no further threat.
Unit 2 lost its coolant today, but in the meantime, sea water has been injected, the water level inside is now at 2 m and the reactor is cooling down.
While the loss of coolant is a severe problem, the structural integrity of the containment vessels has at no point been an issue.
For a scientific take on the matter, this is a good read.
However, reading the German press really made my jaws drop. (No, there has not been a “Nuclear Disaster”, and neither is there one under way.). In my opinion, this kind of coverage is nothing but irresponsible. The constant repetition of footage from the Chernobyl accident on German TV is moreover completely misplaced, since the reactor type of the Fukushima power plant is completely different from the one at Chernobyl and renders such an accident a physical impossibility.
No wonder it is so hard for many of us foreigners to reassure our families abroad.
If the world out there is really as concerned for Japan’s plight as it claims, here’s what you can do: stop creating this climate of fear and impending catastrophe. You’re just making life harder for all of us.