The Award Ceremony of the Japan Awards for Biodiversity 2013 held in Tokyo, Japan
The Award Ceremony of the Japan Awards for Biodiversity 2013 to honor distinguished projects carried out by organizations or individuals in Japan that have made outstanding contributions to the conservation and sustainable use of biodiversity was held at U Thant International Conference Hall of the United Nations University (Tokyo, Japan) on October 29, 2013.
After the opening address given by Mr. Takuya Okada, Chairman of the AEON Environmental Foundation, the Grand Prix of the Japan Awards selected from the five awardees was announced at the award ceremony. NPO Tambo’s project, “Restoration of Rice Paddies Devastated by the Tsunami of the Great East Japan Earthquake using Resilience of the Ecosystem” won the Grand Prix of the Japan Awards 2013.
The Grand Prix recipient was awarded a certificate, a commemorative gift and a monetary prize of two million yen by Mr. Okada. Also, each Excellence Award recipient was awarded a certificate, a commemorative gift and a monetary prize of one million yen.
In reviewing the Japan Awards 2013, Dr. Kunio Iwatsuki (Professor Emeritus, The University of Tokyo), a member of the Judging Committee said: “We also found distinguished projects among shortlisted candidates. They were unfortunately not selected as recipients, but they are achieving significant results and the judging was a fine line. Further contributions of such projects are expected.”
Representing the supporters of the Awards, Mr. Kazuaki Hoshino, Director-General, Nature Conservation Bureau, Ministry of the Environment, Japan, gave a complimentary address indicating expectations for the further development of projects contributing to conservation and the sustainable use of biodiversity.
The five recipients gave presentations outlining their activities. NPO Tambo, the Grand Prix recipient, reported that the “fuyumizutambo” farming method had been successful in suppressing salt in tsunami-devastated rice paddies. Successful results of this project were being developed to sixth industry, an example being the sale of harvested rice. In addition, biological monitoring has been continuously conducted in cooperation with scientists. Mr. Iwabuchi, Chairman of the NPO Tambo, ended his presentation explaining the goal of developing a “biodiversity eco-agriculture Asia model” which introduces worldwide the biodiversity of rice paddies as representative Asian wetlands.
In the latter part of the award ceremony, Mr. Manabu Akaike (Representative Director, Universal Design Intelligence, Inc.), Steering Committee and Judging Committee member, gave a lecture entitled “Designing the Naturalized Society.” In his lecture, he introduced the concept of naturalized society which leverages “low-cost” ecological service and nature mechanisms. He said, “Underground resources can be depleted, but, as far as management is appropriate, biological resources are highly sustainable as they can be conserved, multiplied and altered. Therefore, “naturalized society” is the very idea of green economy.”
Restoration of Rice Paddies Devastated by the Tsunami of the Great East Japan Earthquake using Resilience of the Ecosystem (NPO Tambo)
● Joint Tagging Survey of Skipjack off the Pacific Coast of Japan and a Series of Cooperative Projects and Enlightenment Activities (Ajinomoto Co., Inc.)
● Project of Bamboo Papers (Chuetsu Pulp & Paper Co., Ltd.)
● Evergreen Broad-leaved Forests Project (TERUHA Forest Conference)
● System Construction for the Creation of Nature Technology (Society for Nature Technology, Graduate School of Environmental Studies, Tohoku University)