Approved Specified Nonprofit Corporation

【JWF News Vol. 232】20 September 2023 We will never give up halfway, Prof. Tambo

JWF News ❘ 20 September 2023

◇ Contents ◇
・Foreword We will never give up halfway, Prof. Tambo
・Announcement from the Japan Water Forum
 - (Register Now!) The 1st JWF Webinar 2023

・Foreword We will never give up halfway, Prof. Tambo
 By Dr. Kotaro Takemura, Secretary General of the Japan Water Forum

Prof. Norihito Tambo, Vice-President of the Japan Water Forum (JWF) passed away on 6 August, 2023. I offer my deepest condolences to his family and friends, and my heartfelt prayers for the repose of his soul.

 The JWF was established in 2004, in the hope that the aspirations of the 3rd World Water Forum, held in Japan in 2003, would be realized both in Japan and worldwide. Prof. Tambo served as vice-president of the advisory council, representing academia. In 2018, the International Water Association (IWA) World Water Congress and Exhibition was held in Tokyo, attended by then Their Imperial Highnesses the Crown Prince and Crown Princess of Japan. On that occasion, Prof. Tambo served as an attendant to Their Imperial Highnesses in his capacity as acting president of the JWF. I assisted him.

JWF’s activities address all water-related issues including water and sanitation. I would like to express my sincere gratitude to Prof. Tambo for leading the JWF for nearly 20 years.

 In autumn 2008, I visited Prof. Tambo to have a talk. I brought with me a report on meetings held from November 2007 to August 2008 by the Panel on Water Security, headed by the late Shoichi Nakagawa, a member of the House of Representatives. I told Prof. Tambo about the challenges identified at the meetings, emphasizing two points: first, that the main barrier to the solution of water issues was the sectionalism of water administration, and second, that there was an absence of a “control tower” for dealing with the issues.

I conveyed Mr. Nakagawa’s wish to Prof. Tambo that the JWF would assume this role of control tower on a permanent basis. Prof. Tambo smiled and said, “Do you want to drag out an old soldier like me?” Looking keenly at me, he accepted the request.

 On January 30, 2009, the Water Security Council of Japan was launched under the chairpersonship of Prof. Tambo. Responding to his call, top-level experts from the water and international affairs sectors joined the governing council, creating the highest-level committee.

 Chairperson Prof. Tambo constantly emphasized the vulnerability of energy and food supply, as well as the role of water in modern society and insisted on the necessity of shifting to a new social system, in which decentralized, self-sustaining regions work closely together.

 I was surprised to hear Prof. Tambo articulating such a view on the dangers of modern civilization. Encouraged by this, all the committee members began to exchange frank opinions, making the meetings very lively and constructive. By October 2012, they had held more than ten discussions and were able to compile a timely recommendation: Towards a Low-Carbon and Sustainable Water and Material-Circulating Society.

 In the recommendation’s preamble, Prof. Tambo wrote:
 Japan is the first nation to face a declining population. In other words, Japan might be the first nation to graduate from modern civilization. Japan is an extremely advanced nation in the Far East, facing a turning point in its history, which could lead to the creation of the next civilization, a later modern civilization. I think that a country with numerous environmental problems can create a new civilization by solving these problems in creative ways and can become the most advanced nation in the world. The Japanese are facing such an opportunity for the first time in history. Our success or failure depends on whether we are prepared for this challenge. We must not underestimate our place in history.

After the passing of Prof. Tambo, I remembered these words while I was riding on the train. I shed a tear as I murmured, “We will never give up halfway, Prof. Tambo”.

・Announcement from the Japan Water Forum

– (Register Now!) The 1st JWF Webinar 2023

The Japan Water Forum will host the 1st JWF Webinar 2023 on Thursday, September 21st. We will invite speakers from the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA).

The Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), an implementing agency of Japan’s Official Development Assistance (ODA), has continuously dispatched the Water Security Action Team(W-SAT) for 15 years since 2008 as young volunteers to improve water and sanitation in Africa. By the end of May 2023, a cumulative total of 294 volunteers had been dispatched to 21 countries, and 20 are currently active in 9 countries. W-SAT members live with local communities, understand their needs, and work to solve their problems with their free perspectives. We would like to introduce a unique initiative and innovation originated by Japanese youth in this W-SAT.

In this webinar, the speakers will talk about special projects and new ideas from youth in Japan. Join and learn about new ways to think about water and sustainability!

▼Please visit the following website for details▼

(Reported by Mr. Hirohisa SUZUKI, Project Coordinator)

▼JWF News Archives▼

If you wish to post information on our bulletin board, or should you prefer not to receive further JWF News, please contact us. You can also get in touch regarding subscribing, changes of address, or any other comments or requests.
JWF News Vol. 232 / 20 September 2023
Japan Water Forum
6th fl., 5-4 Nihonbashi-Hakozaki-cho, Chuo-ku, Tokyo, 103-0015
TEL: 03-5645-8040 FAX: 03-5645-8041
E-mail: news[at] URL: ※Please change [at] to @

This browser is no longer supported