“the 9.0-magnitude Tohoku-Oki earthquake that hit Japan in 2011, triggering a tsunami, killing nearly 16,000 people and destroying the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant”
The 9.0 Tohoku-Oki earthquake itself did not directly damage the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant, much less destroy it.
Very preventable flooding from the tzunami damaged external emergency generators powering pumps dealing with circulation and disposal of the water used to keep the reactor cooled, and the failure of THOSE generators caused over-heating of the reactor, which caused some damage to the facility, resulting in some release of radiation before the reactor was shut down. The flood protection for the emergency generators was spec’d for less severe tsunami possibilities than what happened with the 9.0 Tohoku-Oki earthquake.
As far as the direct affects of the earthquake, the nuclear plant was not damaged. As far as the general outcome altogther, the plant was not “destoryed”; though, for public relations reasons more than scientific reasons it may not be repaired completely and reopened.
I heard a report the other day which said that the location of the nuclear plant had received 30 meter (95 ft) tsunamis in the historical past, but the plant was not sited or protected to reflect this historical reality. I spoke to a man the other day from the northern part of Washington, DC. He said that all the houses in his neighborhood had sustained earthquake damage from the 5.6 in Mineral, VA. They all had to have their chimneys torn down and rebuilt and it was not covered by their insurance because this is not an earthquake area.