Technology giant Google has released time-lapse aerial footage detailing the massive rebuilding efforts that have taken place in Japan five years on from the devastating earthquake and tsunami that killed over 15,000 people.

The images, compiled from aerial shots and Google Street View photos, reveal farm land and buildings gradually being reconstructed from the ground up in the north-eastern Tohoku region of Japan.

The 9.0 magnitude earthquake was the largest tremor to strike the country since records began 140 years previously, unleashing a tsunami that generated 10m waves and wiped out large areas of the coastal region.

The tsunami also triggered a nuclear reactor meltdown at the Fukushima Daiichi power plant when it was inundated with high waves, causing the release of radioactive materials. A 20km exclusion zone remains around the site of the Fukushima Daiichi plant, and thousands of people still live in temporary accommodation.

The Japanese Cabinet Office estimated that the natural disaster caused around 16.9tn (£100bn) worth of damage in 2011.