ニュースレター

2016年07月20日

ニュースレター 4℃ AQUA PROGRAM JWFファンド 世界水フォーラム 水防演習ツアー

【JWF News Vol.142】 A First-class World Citizen: 65th Flood Fighting Drill at the Tonegawa River Basin

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【JWF News Vol.142】 A First-class World Citizen: 65th Flood Fighting Drill at the Tonegawa River Basin
July 20, 2016

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◇Contents◇

・Foreword A First-class World Citizen: 65th Flood Fighting Drill at the Tonegawa River Basin

・Report from the Japan Water Forum
-4℃ AQUA PROGRAM in 2015 has been completed!
-JWF Fund 2015 Completed!
-The 59th World Water Council Board of Governors’ Meeting
-Preparatory Process for the 8th World Water Forum Starts

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・Foreword  A First-class World Citizen: 65th Flood Fighting Drill at the Tonegawa River Basin
By Kotaro Takemura, Chair of Japan Water Forum

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65th Flood Fighting Drill at the Tonegawa River Basin

On May 21st, the 65th Flood Fighting Drill took place at the Tonegawa River basin in Toride, Ibaraki Prefecture. The Japan Water Forum organized an annual tour for embassy officials from Tokyo, offering them a chance to experience the drill firsthand. Although the bus set off at seven in the morning, twenty embassy officials from thirteen countries were present, including the Charge d’Affaires from the Syrian Arab Republic.

Last September, levees on the Kinugawa River in the Tonegawa River System were breached, causing the loss of many lives and a great deal of property. As a result, the flood-fighting corps, national and local governments, Self-Defense Force members and private companies which had organized the drill, along with many visitors, undertook the event with great seriousness. The embassy officials took part in making sand bags and learning rope work. The day passed quickly.

Inatoi Pond, a Flood Control Reservoir

The drill was over by around one o’clock in the afternoon. The JWF group headed for Inatoi Pond on the Tonegawa River. Mr. Yukio Oguri, deputy director of the Tonegawa-Jyoryu River Office at the Kanto Regional Development Bureau of MLIT accompanied us on the bus and guided us on a tour of the site. He explained:

When the water level rises during massive flooding, the excess water is transferred into a flood control reservoir adjacent to the river, so as to lower the river's level. Inatoi Pond is located downstream of the confluence of the Tonegawa and the Kinugawa Rivers. Therefore, not only does it protect the Tonegawa River from breaching, but it also allows flood waters from the Kinugawa River to discharge into the Tonegawa River, thus lowering its water level. As such, it also plays an important role in the Kinugawa River.

By way of illustration, Mr. Oguri had brought only two small display panels. They showed no descriptive text or figures, only aerial photographs of the pond filled with flood water. The important role of the pond was quite obvious at a glance. The photos were wonderfully simple and to the point.

Overflow Levees of the Flood Control Reservoir

Getting off the bus, we went to the overflow levees of the reservoir. We were surrounded by lush greenery and the area was full of birdsong. Mr. Oguri spoke in a tone of confidence through an interpreter, using very simple terms, so that everyone was able to understand. He referred to the following points:

About 400 years ago, Ieyasu Tokugawa, founder of the Tokugawa Shogunate, diverted the Tonegawa River towards the east in order to protect the capital, Edo (Tokyo) from flooding. It has taken us nearly fifty years to complete this Inatoi Pond project. In order to increase reservoir capacity, we are planning to deepen the pond in the future. The excavations will be carried out in such a way as to conserve the green environment and ecology surrounding the pond.

The diplomats asked many questions. One from an African country commented that many lives and assets had been lost to flooding in his country and that this kind of flood control reservoir would be very useful.

A First-class World Citizen

On the bus ride back, more questions were asked. Among these was: “Have you won the fight against flooding?” Mr. Oguri, had an immediate answer to this unexpected question: “We have won the fight so far, but flooding can exceed our expectations. In the end, we won’t be able to conquer nature. We must live in harmony with nature, because nature is also a blessing.”

These words were met with a burst of applause. This technology official, who was resolutely fighting against flooding on the front line, showed a profoundly humble attitude towards nature. He didn’t speak English, but what he was saying fascinated these visitors from around the world.

A world citizen isn’t just someone who speaks English, but someone who has something worth telling people in the international community. Mr. Oguri, deputy director who told us about Inatoi Pond was a first-class world citizen.

DSCN2793縮小

At front left is Mr. Oguri, deputy director of the
Tonegawa-Jyoryu River Office at the
Kanto Regional Development Bureau of MLIT,
who told us about Inatoi Pond.

 

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Report from the Japan Water Forum

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4℃ AQUA PROGRAM in 2015 has been completed!

4℃ AQUA PROGRAM is a joint project which has been established by YONDOSHI HOLDINGS and JWF in 2008.
In the program, continuous support is being provided to the women of developing countries who face serious water and hygiene problems.
As the eighth-year program, aiming at freeing women from burden of fetching water as well as securing safe drinking water, we have carried out rainwater harvesting tanks installation to 14 households in a rural village, Mahakachchakodiya, Vavuniya, Northern Province, Sri Lanka.

▼Read more▼
http://www.waterforum.jp/en/2016/0720/?p=2145
(Reported by Sae Ishihara, Manager)

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JWF Fund 2015 Completed!

JWF Fund, managed through fees from corporate and individual members and donations, is the initiative that supports grass-roots organizations which address water-related issues in developing countries. Last year is the 11th year since its establishment in 2005. There were 41 applications from 12 countries for last year’s calling. As the result of selection, we have decided to provide grants for 6 projects from 5 countries. For detail of the results of the JWF Fund, please visit our website!

▼Read more▼
http://www.waterforum.jp/en/2016/0707/?p=2015
(Reported by Sae Ishihara, Manager)

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The 59th World Water Council Board of Governors’ Meeting

The 59th World Water Council (WWC) Board of Governors’ Meeting was held on 24-25 June 2016 in Brasilia, Brazil followed by the Kick-off Meeting of the 8th World Water Forum. Discussions focused on the updates from Task Forces, preparation of the 8th World Water Forum, selection process for the 9th Forum and WWC's position in key international events.
Mr. Kunihiro Moriyasu, Deputy Secretary General of JWF was approved as a new governor of WWC for JWF at this meeting. The JWF was also approved to join the Task Force, "Cities: At the Heart of Growth".
Having been established in 1996, the WWC will celebrate its 20th anniversary this year. The joint anniversary celebration of the WWC together with Asia-Pacific Water Forum (10 years) will be held on 12 July 2016 on the occasion of the Singapore International Water Week.

▼Read more▼
http://www.waterforum.jp/en/2016/0706/?p=2211
(Reported by Shigenori Asai, Deputy Director)

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Preparatory Process for the 8th World Water Forum Starts

The next World Water Forum, which is the biggest international event on water, held every three years, is to take place in Brasilia, Brazil on 18-23 March 2018 under the theme of "Sharing Water". The Kick-off Meeting was held at the Ulysses Guimaraes Convention Center in Brasilia, where the draft thematic framework of the 8th Forum was presented, and nearly 800 participants from 55 countries dicussed how to intergrate other processes with the thematic process and develop each process towards the 8th Forum.

▼Please visit the following website for details: ▼
http://www.worldwatercouncil.org/news/news-single/article/8th-world-water-forum-preparations-get-underway/
*Official website of the 8th World Water Forum: www.worldwaterforum8.org
(Reported by Shigenori Asai, Deputy Director)

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JWF News Vol.142    July 20, 2016
Japan Water Forum

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