September 11th not only marked the 10th anniversary of a devastating day for our country, but also the 6 month mark of the earthquake that hit Japan last March. The country has made a lot of progress in that half year. The nuclear reactors, which had a meltdown following the shake, are "essentially stable," according to the International Atomic Energy Agency, reports Reuters. "The situation at the site remained very serious for many months. The agency's assessment now is that the reactors are essentially stable," IAEA director Yukiya Amano said. The plant plans on using a cold-shutdown method to bring the fuel rod temperatures down.

The development comes as the rest of the country has made significant progress. Today's In Focus gallery at The Atlantic details the clean-up with 12 before and after photos. While the change is inspiring, the photos show the extent of the damage, some of which will take longer to amend.