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Sunday, January 02, 2011

Forum "Where is Okinawa Going?" Report フォーラム「沖縄はどこへ向かうのか」報告

 

Session I on "After COP10" - from right, Kawamura Masami,
presenter, Sakurai Kunitoshi, discussant, and Yoshikawa Hideki,
moderator. Kawamura and Yoshikawa are leaders of the Okinawa
Biodiversity Citizens' Network, one of the organizers of the Forum 
 
Forum "Where is Okinawa Going?" was successfully held on December 19th at Okinawa University. It was attended by 175 people.

Below are related documents.

1)Okinawan newspaper Ryukyu Shimpo's report of the event, from the Internet version and from their December 20th paper issue with English translation

2) Co-sponsor Japan Focus' coordinator and speaker of the second session Gavan McCormack's article on Ryukyu Shimpo on December 14 (see the English version of the article HERE)

3) Co-organizer Peace Philosophy Centre's Norimatsu Satoko's article in Okinawa Times on December 16 (there is no English version but this article is a summary of Norimatsu's reflection on the November 28 Okinawa gubernatorial election - see this LINK -  and the subsequent dialogue with Doug Lummis - see its Part I and Part II)


Session II on Senkaku. At front, from left, Wakabayashi
Chiyo, Arasaki Moriteru, and Gavan McCormack.

4) Co-organizer and moderator of Session I (COP10) Yoshikawa Hideki's article in Ryukyu Shimpo on December 15 (Japanese)

5) Co-organizer and presenter of Session 1 Kawamura Masami's article in Okinawa Times on December 14 (Japanese)

6) a presentation summary of Kawamura Masami  (Session 1, COP10), from Session I on COP10 (English)

7)a presentation summary of Sakurai Kunitoshi (Okinawa University), from Session I on COP10 (English)

8)Speaker of the second session Arasaki Moriteru's article in Ryukyu Shimpo (in Japanese) on October 4, 2010, on the Senkaku Islands issue, and


Session III on post-election Okinawa. From left,
Sato Manabu, professor of Okinawa International
University and moderator, Miyagi Yasuhiro, and
Shimabukuro Jun.

9)Moderator of the Session II and associate professor of Okinawa University Wakabayashi Chiyo's article on the Senkaku issue in Okinawa Times (in Japanese) on October 2, 2010 (Japanese)

10)Gavan McCormack's interview article in Ryukyu Shimpo on January 4, 2011. The interview was held on the day after the forum, in Naha. (Japanese)

11) Okinawa University's report of the forum and summary of feedback by participants

12) USTREAM Links by Okinawa Alternative Media (Session I, II, III)



1)

琉球新報報道(12月20日)
東アジアの懸け橋に 沖大でフォーラム、沖縄取り巻く課題議論
Report in Ryukyu Shimpo, December 20

2010年12月20日

 「沖縄は、どこへ向かうのか」フォーラム(ジャパン・フォーカス、沖縄大学地域研究所主催)が19日、那覇市の沖大で開かれ、約100人が訪れた。尖閣諸島問題と沖縄、知事選後の沖縄、COP10以後の沖縄の三つのテーマで識者が議論を交わした。Forum "Where is Okinawa Going?" was held at Okinawa University in Naha City, co-sponsored by Asia-Pacific Journal: Japan Focus and Okinawa University Regional Studies Institute. About one hundred attended. Speakers presented their opinions on three themes: the problems surrounding Senkaku Islands, Okinawa's direction after the November 28 gubernatorial election, and Okinawa after COP10. (Translator's note: see this LINK for the outline of this forum, including the program. Also, the organizer's official count of the attendants was 175.)

 尖閣諸島問題を沖縄の視点で問う討論では、新崎盛暉沖大名誉教授が「『固有の領土』論でなく、『生活圏の論理』で見るべきだ」と提唱。ガバン・マコーマック豪国立大名誉教授は「ナショナリズムの波にのまれず、(諸国をつなぐ)万国津梁のビジョンを持つべきだ」と主張した。During the session on Okinawa's perspectives on Senkaku Islands, Arasaki Moriteru, professor emeritus of Okinawa University stressed on the need to look at the Senkaku area as "a place of livelihood for Okinawans" rather than from the national narrative of "Japan's inherent territory."

 知事選後の沖縄を考える討論では、これまでの沖縄振興や基地受け入れによる名護市の振興策を検討。2012年に期限が切れる沖縄振興計画のポスト振計の在り方を模索した。The session on "Okinawa after the gubernatorial election" assessed the "Okinawa Development Program," the existing government subsidy programs including the subsidies for Nago in exchange for hosting military bases. It sought for alternative economic models after the current Okinawa Development Program expires at the end of 2011.

島袋純琉大教授は、「米軍が上で、憲法が下という現状を見極めなければならない」と述べて、沖縄から民主国家の在り方や、自治を変えていく必要性を強調した。Shimabukuro Jun, professor of University of Ryukyus pointed out that the current reality has it that Ampo (US military in Japan) overrides the Constitution and this situation must be re-assessed and changed by seeking new ways of democracy and autonomy for Okinawa.
 宮城康博元名護市議は「(名護は)この間何一つ潤わず、基地建設の容認にもなっていない。ポスト振計は県民主体で作る必要がある」と強調した。Miyagi Yasuhiro, former Nago City Assembly member pointed out that Nago never prospered under the past subsidy programs linked with hosting bases, and residents have rejected hosting a new base.  He stressed that Okinawa's new development plan must be created by Okinawans themselves.

 COP10以後の沖縄に関する討論では、桜井国俊沖縄大学教授らが「生物多様性」への市民の取り組みについて話し合った。In the session on "Okinawa after COP10," speakers, including Sakurai Kunitoshi, professor of Okinawa University, exchanged views on Okinawan citizens' involvement in promoting biological diversity in the region. (Translator's note: see Sakurai's presentation summary in English below.)

Ryukyu Shimpo on December 20, paper version:
2) Gavan McCormack, in Ryukyu Shimpo, December 14


3) Norimatsu Satoko, in Okinawa Times, December 16
4) Yoshikawa Hideki, in Ryukyu Shimpo, December 15

5) Kawamura Masami, Okinata Times, December 14


6) Kawamura Masami's Presentation Summary

Session 1 Okinawa Post COP10

How should Okinawa‘s Citizens address and engage in/with biodiversity issues regionally, nationally and internationally?

Dr. Masami Kawamura (Citizens’ Network for Biological Diversity in Okinawa)

This presentation is an analysis of the Okinawa Citizens’ Network for Biological Diversity’s experience of preparing for and participating in the 10th Conference of Parties, Convention on Biological Diversity (COP10), held in Nagoya, October 2010. Based upon the analysis, it also attempts to suggest what is needed for civil movement in Okinawa.

1. Different Actors, Different Engagements in/with COP10

1) Japanese Government (The Ministry of Environment and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs)


They did not make sufficient effort to get citizens involved in COP 10: they maintain that that COP10 is an inter-governmental conference and policy-making mechanism.

2) Okinawa Prefecture

 Passive attitude toward COP10.
 Okinawa Prefecture is also reluctant to get citizens involved in their projects.

3)-1 NGO Japan Civil Network for Convention on Biological Diversity(JCN-CBD)

It was established as an umbrella organization in January 2009 to form the foundation for Japanese NGOs and Japanese civil society as Japan is the host country of COP10.

-2 Other NPO/NGOs

They were unsatisfied with Japanese Government’s attitude for COP10.

4) Business sector

They regarded COP10 as their new business chance and were concerned with restriction on business practice.

TEEB (The Economics of Ecosystem and Biodiversity)
ABS (Access to genetic resources and Benefit Sharing)

5) Media

They tended to emphasize conflicts over biological resources (e.g. ABS ) between the advanced countries and the developing countries.

2. Difficulties of Citizen’s Engagement in/with CBD/COP10

-Word itself “biodiversity”: Seibutsu Tayosei sounds “difficult and unfamiliar”

-Issues ranging from scientific arena (conservation of biodiversity) to political and social matters (CBD matters including global south, human rights, gender, indigenous people, access to genetic resources and benefits sharing)

-Access to up-to date information (language, tools)

3. How did Okinawa’s citizens address and engage in/with COP10?

1) Citizens’ Network for Biological Diversity in Okinawa (Okinawa BD)

-Established in July 2009 in anticipation of COP10

-It consists of environmental, peace and human rights NGOs/NPOs and concerned citizens.

-Their three core principles are “Environment” ”Peace” ”Human Rights”

- Okinawa BD regarded US Base presence and ill-advised development or “Ran Kaihatsu” as two major causes for the loss of biodiversity.

-Since they have been disappointed at domestic laws and systems as tools for their struggle to stop the US base construction and destructive development projects, they expected international communities to put pressure on Japanese Government to change their polities.

  2) The Okinawa BD is an unprecedented social movement in Okinawa in following   points.

①Okinawa BD is the first network which, with a formal organizational structure, covers environmental, peace and human rights group and concerned citizens in both Okinawa and mainland. The formal structure was necessary and required to participate in COP10.

②It is the first experience that a lot of ordinary citizens were constantly involved in activities, preparing for an international conference for about one year.

③It is also the first time that Okinawa and NGO/NPOs in mainland worked onthe same project, COP10, simultaneously.

3) Activities

-Advocacy (Public comments on biodiversity policy, petition for designation of blue coral reef in Oura Bay and Okinawa Natural Monument, petition for construction conservation of Awase Tidal Flat, Open letter on the construction plan of US helipad in Takae to Okinawa Defense Bureau)
-Building Networks (Attend UNEP workshop)
-Public awareness and education/outreaching (photo exhibitions on biodiversity, field studies, knowledge café)

-Addressing establishment of “Okinawa Regional Biodiversity Strategy”


(Basic Biodiversity Act encourages local authorities to establish the strategy.

Civil participation is a key idea in the process of designing the effective strategy)

4) Projects during COP10

-Booth, poster session
-Position paper
-Pamphlet on biodiversity in Okinawa, booklets
-Symposium and forum
-Appeal to international communities (NGOs, International Indigenous Forum on Biodiversity)

4. Challenges and Possibilities for Civil movement in Okinawa

〜What we learned from the experience of COP10

1) Region

[Challenge]

-Problem of “politicized” biodiversity / “plastic word” “biodiversity”
Criticism and distrust from scientists 
No space for agriculture, fisheries
Lack of perspective of community development

2) National

[Challenge]

-Acquiring skills and building networks to work on same issues.

[Possibilities]

-Sharing Okinawa’s experience of addressing biodiversity issues
(Regional Biological Diversity Strategy)
-Providing input to the biological policies from Okinawa

3) International

[Challenge]
-Review our position and strategy in international community

indigenous people? islanders? scientific experts? 
-Building networks for regional and international community

5. Conclusion (tentative)

-Make use of experience of COP 10 to reflect our movement
-Critical analysis of civil movement in Okinawa is needed.

(There is already great work of analysis of civil participation in Aichi Expo)

-Take the process of establishing Okinawa Regional Biological Strategy as an opportunity to reflect our movement

Seek a new style for dialogue with local authorities and citizens

Acquire new skill for building network for national and international community

Launch channels to people who have not connected us, including scientists, producers.

7) Sakurai Kunitoshi's summary

Session I

Okinawa after COP10

How Do the Citizens of Okinawa Deal with “Biodiversity”?

Beyond the Symptomatic Therapy

(Beyond the “Whack-a-mole”)

1. Background of Symptomatic Therapy

- In Okinawa we are experiencing the rush of public work projects which are carried out as the compensation of the military base construction projects. Therefore, the rush of EIAs for these projects is observed and many of them are of problematic quality. There are also many project proponents who try to sneak out of EIA procedure. That is the reason why we have to implement symptomatic therapy.

Examples of Problematic EIAs: Henoko MCAS, Takae Helipads, Awase Landfill, Shin-Ishigaki Airport, Forest Roads Construction in Yanbaru, New Runway Construction in Naha Airport

- In COP10 Nagoya, Okinawa BD Network emphasized the importance of three issues (Environment, Peace and Human Rights) as a package. This approach was not shared with NGOs in mainland Japan because they are blind to other issues but the environment. But the approach of Okinawa BD Network is more universal and reflects the reality of many less developed countries where not only the biodiversity (environment) but also people’s peaceful life are damaged irreparably by unfair trade with industrialized countries. To protect environment, we have to deal with these three issues as a package.

-  Although the approach of Okinawa has been so far symptomatic, it has clarified the rich biodiversity of the sea of Henoko and Ohura Bay driven by the necessity to criticize the EIA conducted by the Ministry of Defense.

2. Beyond the symptomatic therapy

- In Japan, Okinawa will be the area that will suffer the most from the damage of biodiversity and global warming. The issues of biodiversity and global warming should be treated as a set at least in Okinawa because global warming will damage the biodiversity in both marine and terrestrial environments. However, neither the local government nor the people of Okinawa have sense of crisis. It is clearly shown by the delay in the formulation of local strategy for the conservation of BD as well as the loose goal for the control of green house gas emission.

-  Lack of local strategy allows the proliferation of rampant development projects that are causing irreversible damage to the environment of Okinawa.

3. Three in One Approach is Needed

- If we want to conserve the valuable nature of Okinawa, then we have to listen to the voices of its users such as farmers, fishermen and foresters. Many failures take place because we are deaf to their voices. We have to take a win-win approach combining three components of CONSERVE, USE and KNOW the environment together. We tend to emphasize the component of CONSERVE only.

-  The local strategy for the conservation of BD should be formulated and implemented through the partnership of governments, businesses and civil society. In that sense it is crucial to overcome government’s compartmentalized public administration. If the Nature Conservation Section is left alone to bear this mission in the prefectural administration system, then the strategy will become a flash in the pan.

- New law should be fully exploited. “Law for the Promotion of BD Conservation Activities at Local Government Level through the Partnership of Various Stakeholders” was issued on December 10, 2010.

8) Arasaki Moriteru, in Ryukyu Shimpo, October 4



9) Wakabayashi Chiyo, in Okinawa Times, October 2




10) Gavan McCormack, Ryukyu Shimpo, January 4, 2011

11) Summary of feedback by participants

12) Webstreaming on Okinawa Alternative Media

If below does not work, try these links:
Part I http://www.ustream.tv/recorded/11514314
Part II http://www.ustream.tv/recorded/11517753
Part III http://www.ustream.tv/recorded/11520194


Part I


Part II

Part III 



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