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Thursday, 13th September 2012
In General Japan News,

Miracle pine cut down in 150m yen preservation project

The last-standing tree of the March 2011 tsunami disaster has been cut down in a preservation project valued at around 150 million yen.

Dubbed the "miracle pine", the tree underwent a Shinto ceremony before being removed from its site in the city of Rikuzentakata.

City officials confirmed the multi-million yen remake would see the tree restored to its former glory at the same plot in February, albeit after a significant makeover.

Seawater has damaged the roots of the tree, however, its trunk has been dismantled in three parts and hauled to a factory where it will be split into nine more pieces.

There, they will be hollowed out and given an anti-decay treatment, while a carbon spine will also be fitted.

It seems the branches are unsalvageable, however, as plastic replicas will be modelled on the originals to be used on the restored plant.

A city official told the AFP that a Facebook campaign to save the pine had raised 27 million yen by Monday (September 10th).

However, the Japan Times reports that the city has only received 15 per cent of the donations it wants to help fund the project.

Posted by Susan Ballion