Shin-Etsu Trail Club Wins Eco-Tourism Grand Prize Copyright Non-profit organization Shin-Etsu Trail Club Japanese non-profit organization (NPO) the Shin-Etsu Trail Club (Iiyama city, Nagano Prefecture) was selected from 63 applicants for the grand prize of the 7th Ecotourism Awards announced by Japan's Ministry of the Environment (MOE) on December 20, 2011. The Ecotourism Awards recognize and publicize ecotourism efforts by businesses, organizations, and municipalities in Japan. Powered by a hardworking volunteer staff, the Shin-Etsu Trail Club manages and maintains the 80-kilometer Shin-etsu trail, which runs along the border between Nagano Prefecture and Niigata Prefecture. Three years after the trail's opening, various trail-based activities are still expanding in the area. The group's broad-reaching and proactive efforts to revitalize local communities by establishing a maintenance system based on collaboration with neighboring organizations and by using the trail as infrastructure for conserving and utilizing local resources were rated very highly.
Mariners, A's to open '12 MLB season in Japan Proceeds from two-game series will assist nation's rebuilding efforts Major League Baseball will open its 2012 season on March 28-29 in Japan with two games between the Seattle Mariners (the "road" team) and the Oakland Athletics (the "home" team). Both of these teams are highly popular with Japanese baseball fans. This is the fourth season opener in Japan, and the first since the 2008 opener which was held at the Tokyo Dome, where this year's games will also take place. The two-game series is dedicated to assisting the rebuilding efforts as Japan continues its difficult recovery from the catastrophic events of last March, when an earthquake and tsunami wreaked unimaginable destruction across a wide swath of northeastern Japan and its after effects reverberated around the globe. The series is made possible through the support of Nippon Professional Baseball and Yomiuri. For more information on 2012 MLB Opening Series tickets, visit here.
The JNTO has put together a useful, updated 2012 Cherry Blossom Forecast Map showing when the beautiful flowers will usher in spring in your neck of the woods. Visit their Cherry Blossom Forecast page here!
The Japan Journals crew are in Japan filming some new episodes of their Web video series. Check out Episode 1 here Outdoor Japan is proud to support the Japan Journals crew as the document another epic season in Japan! You may know these guys from their acclaimed Diaries Down Under series.
English guided tours of selected exhibitors at Eco-Products Exhibition 2011 (Organized by Nikkei Inc.). At the 13th Annual Eco-Products 2011 Exhibition is scheduled to be held from December 15th to 17th at the Tokyo International Exhibition Center or "Tokyo Big Sight," EcoNetworks will hold an English guided tour of selected exhibitors specially designed for foreigners who need language assistance. Eco-Products website: http://eco-pro.com/eco2011/english/index.html * Tour Description: 1-hour Walk around the Exhibition The Eco-Products Exhibition 2011 is expected to draw more than 750 companies/organizations as exhibitors covering huge areas. Our 1-hour walking tour introduces you to some featured exhibits, and you will get a general picture of the exhibition. * English Guided Tour Schedule: - December 15th (Thursday) 13:00 - 14:30 - December 15th (Thursday) 15:30 - 17:00 - December 16th (Friday) 13:00 - 14:30 - December 16th (Friday) 15:30 - 17:00 * Place: Tokyo Big Sight - Tokyo, Japan http://www.bigsight.jp/english/general/access/index.html * Tour registration, Please fill in the sign-up form on the bottom of following page: http://eco-pro.com/eco2011/english/index06.html * Facebook Updates Leading up to the event, you can find more information about the past events and what's coming up at: http://www.facebook.com/EcoNetworks?sk=app_263288443714462 * Tour Report 2010 http://www.japanfs.org/en/aboutus/event/pages/030526.html Through the guided tour, you will not only see a wide range of Japanese eco-products but also learn how Japan can contribute to the world with such technologies and products to reduce its impacts on the global environment. * Fee The fee for participation is free. If you have any questions and concerns, please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Contact person: Shiro Hosojima, Tel/Fax ++81-44-933-7639 * About EcoNetworks Co. http://www.econetworks.jp/en/
JAL Extends Free Transportation of Relief Goods to Thailand Japan Airlines (JAL) extends its condolence to those affected by the serious flooding in Thailand in recent weeks. JAL will provide from Japan, free transport of relief goods at the request of central and local governments and authorities, embassies, United Nations agencies based in Japan, and the non-governmental organization Japan Platform*. Additionally, addressees of the emergency supplies must also be recognized public organizations in Thailand. JAL will transport free of charge, relief goods and materials on scheduled JAL Group operated flights from Tokyo's Narita and Haneda airports, as well as Osaka (Kansai) to Bangkok's Suvarnabhumi International Airport between November 10 and December 9, 2011. Supplies will be carried as air freight and under the conditions specified below: The shipper and consignee are eligible organizations Contact information of the shipper and consignee are clear Arrangements for customs clearance and surface transport at the departure point and arrival point must be completed by the shipper beforehand Shipments must not contain dangerous goods, live animals, or other restricted items The weight of each shipment must not be more than 1 ton. The time between receiving the shipment and its arrival in Bangkok must be within approximately one week. For any enquiry, please call 03-5460-3104 between 09:30 to 18:30 (JST) from Mondays to Fridays. * Japan Platform is a facility to provide humanitarian assistance to major disasters and humanitarian crisis through coordination among various organizations. For more information, visit: http://www.japanplatform.org/top.html%0d
JAL Receives CAPA Airline of the Year Award 2011 Japan Airlines (JAL) was conferred the title of CAPA Airline of the Year 2011, by CAPA - Centre for Aviation* - a leading provider in global aviation analysis and data, at the annual CAPA Aviation Awards for Excellence ceremony held in Singapore yesterday. Endeavors undertaken by JAL in 2010 have contributed to a significant reduction in the airline's operating costs which led to an operating profit of 188.4 billion yen in the same fiscal year, and a net profit of 12.7 billion yen for the first quarter of 2011 (April to June 2011), earning the airline this esteemed recognition by CAPA. These are results of the implementation of a profit-focused revenue management system and a range of stern measures to streamline JAL's operations including cutting back international and domestic capacities by 40% and 30% respectively (measured in available seat kilometer compared to levels in fiscal year 2008), reducing its workforce size to match the new scale of operations, as well as decommissioning all 747-400 jumbo jets and Airbus 300-600s in a complete shift to using small to medium-sized wide-body aircraft. "Since January 2010, Japan Airlines has undertaken a remarkable process of restructuring. This restored what was an almost irretrievable situation of a high cost airline, with an uncompetitive route network. JAL has since established a full metal neutral joint venture with its oneworld partner on US routes and is exploring a European equivalent." said Peter Harbison, Executive Chairman of CAPA. "JAL has returned remarkably to profitability, despite serious natural disasters which afflicted northern Japan and now looks to be well placed to remain profitable. Most recently JAL has established the framework for a joint venture low cost airline with Qantas/Jetstar, which should assist it to address that fast growing sector." "These features together establish JAL as a market leader which has established a benchmark in achieving profitability in exceptionally challenging circumstances." "The last 2 years proved to be a defining period for JAL during which the company became a leaner organization," said Mr Koichi Mizutome, Executive Vice President of JAL as he received the award last night. "There is ever more work to be done in the fast-changing aviation industry in Japan in order to achieve consistent profits, and we are encouraged by this commendation of the progress we've made thus far. We would like to thank CAPA for their positive appraisal." In the near future, customers can expect improved services from JAL such as high-speed internet connections onboard by next summer, and unparalleled passenger comforts of the state-of-the-art Boeing 787 Dreamliner which JAL expects to deploy on international routes as soon as early 2012. JAL will also launch an inaugural connection between Boston and Asia when it begins non-stop flights to Tokyo (Narita) in April 2012 using the Dreamliner. CAPA - Centre for Aviation and the CAPA Aviation Awards for Excellence Founded in 1990 and head-quartered in Sydney, CAPA is a think-tank and the leading provider of independent aviation market intelligence, analysis and data services in the region. For eight years running, CAPA has been recognising through its Aviation Awards for Excellence, aviation industry innovators and leaders in the region for their notable achievements or contributions to the industry. http://centreforaviation.com/
JAL Brings MARCOART to Sendai Delivering hope for recovery through art from New York to Sendai JAL is proud to present the [MARCOART Painting Exhibition] featuring the works of America's top pop-art artist Peter Marco, and the [Tohoku Cotton Project Exhibition] in Sendai city. 2011 MARCOART The distinctive traits of MARCOART are the unique, friendly depiction of a variety of living creatures in bright, joyful colors which convey a sense of courage and hope. His work gained significant popularity amongst the youth in New York when Peter Marco was commissioned by Mayor Michael Bloomberg to create pieces that bring back hope to the hearts of New Yorkers following the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001. JAL bridges Japan with the world through its business operations and thereby facilitates cultural and economic exchanges. In line with this aspiration, when Peter Marco expressed his wish to contribute to the people of Tohoku, JAL decided to collaborate with him to bring MARCOART and its inspiration for a brighter tomorrow, to Japan. At the same time, a collection of photographs that chart the progress of the Tohoku Cotton Project will also be exhibited. The Tohoku Cotton Project is an on-going effort to restore agricultural land in Sendai Arahama and Natori back to conditions that allow it to grow rice, after large areas were damaged by the tsunami that washed inland. MARCOART has become a symbol of hope, strength and recovery since the terrorist attacks on the United States in 2001, and is intimate in how it reaches deep into the hearts of people. In working with Peter Marco for this initiative, JAL hopes to bring to the people in Tohoku, the same beacon of hope and courage through these paintings, and encourage the many who are striving to restore their farmlands in harmony with nature. Peter Marco will be making a guest appearance at Sendai Airport on October 23, 2011 from 10.00am to 12.00pm to conduct a special art class for children. Tohoku Cotton Project Photo Exhibition / MARCOART Painting Exhibition Date: October 25 ~ October 30, 2011 Venue: Sendai City, Green Plaza Sendai. Marco Ceremony / Marco Painting Class Date: October 23, 2011 (Sunday) Time: 10:00am - 12:00pm Venue: Sendai Airport Terminal Building Level 1, Plaza Stage
Share House with Urban Garden Opens in Central Tokyo Slowlife, Tokyo-based real estate company, opened in May 2011 a share house called Motoazabu Farm in Motoazabu, a town in central Tokyo with many luxury homes. The property has three components: a 40-plot urban garden for rent, a 50 square meter community lounge, and a share house with 17 units that come with garden plots. These three spaces were designed to create connections between people and nature and to offer opportunities for exchange among local people and between local and non-local people. The 40-plot urban garden contains three types of plots. The first type is a rental garden, where tenants can freely grow as many vegetables and herbs as they like. Based on the theme, "Easy and simple gardening, even for beginners," it has a well-established beginner support system. Experienced farmers give direct training to beginners on such tasks as watering and weeding, and an e-mail newsletter provides important gardening tips. The second type is a vegetable gardening school, where tenants grow and harvest vegetables with professional farmers while learning from their expertise. This part includes a program for people who have no experience growing vegetables, and a program to teach kids how to garden. It also includes plots exclusively used by tenants of Motoazabu Farm. Motoazabu Farm also offers such learning opportunities as cooking classes using vegetables grown in the garden, lectures by farmers from rural areas, and a class by guest lecturers on how to grow 100-percent organic vegetables. Courtesy of Japan for Sustainability.