Call for a Sound and Transparent EIA to Save the Okinawa Dugong / ƒWƒ…ƒSƒ“‚ðŽç‚邽‚߂̊‹«ƒAƒZƒX‚ðI

The coastal area of Henoko and Oura Bay in Okinawa, Japan is the most critical habitat for the Okinawa dugong, an isolated population of the endangered dugong species.

The Naha Defense Facilities Administration Agency (Naha DFAA) plans to construct a massive US military base in this area. If carried out, this would certainly have tremendous negative impact on the area’s environment, further endangering the Okinawa dugong.

The Naha DFAA is about to begin the process of Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) for the base construction and its contracted firms have already started what they call “pre-surveys.”

Although we believe that any proper EIA would put an end to the base construction plan, we are extremely concerned with how the Naha DFAA intends to proceed with the pre-surveys and the EIA. 

To save the Okinawa dugong and the coastal environment of Henoko and Oura Bay, we call for a scientifically sound, environmentally responsible, and transparent EIA for the base construction. 

Hideki Yoshikawa
Save the Dugong Campaign Center/ Citizens’ Assessment Nago


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To: The Naha Defense Facilities Administration Agency and Contracted Environment Impact Assessment Firms

The coastal area of Henoko and Oura Bay, Okinawa, Japan is the most critical habitat for the Okinawa dugong, an isolated population of the endangered dugong species.  It is also a rich environment for a variety of species including sea turtles and migratory terns. 


The Naha Defense Facilities Administration Agency (Naha DFAA), a branch office of the Japan Defense Facilities Administration Agency, plans to construct a massive US military base in this area.  The so-called "coastal plan," if carried out, would certainly have tremendous negative impact on the environment, further endangering the Okinawa dugong and other rare species.

The Naha DFAA is about to begin the process of Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) for the base construction, and its contracted firms have already started what they call “pre-surveys.”

I am however extremely concerned with how the Naha DFAA intends to proceed with the pre-surveys and the EIA.  The Naha DFAA’s EIA for the previous base construction plan, the so-called "Henoko offshore plan," was marked by a number of fundamental flaws.  The Naha DFAA furthermore refuses to provide any details of the present pre-surveys for the public.

I firmly believe that the Okinawa dugong and the costal environment of Henoko and Oura Bay need to be protected as much as possible. 

To this end, it is imperative that the pre-surveys and the EIA for the base construction be conducted in a scientifically sound, environmentally responsible, and transparent manner.  It is also imperative that the information regarding the pre-surveys and the EIA be accessible so that the wider public, both domestic and international communities of concerned citizens and experts, can participate in the EIA process.

To ensure a sound and transparent EIA to take place, I petition the Naha DFAA and its contracted EIA firms to:

*prepare summary and full versions of the “pre-survey” and IEA documents in both Japanese and English,

*distribute to the wider public these documents (both summary and full versions) in hard copy and CD forms, and post them on the internet,

*hold public viewings of the EIA documents and public hearings regarding the "pre-surveys" and the EIA not only in Okinawa, but also in Tokyo, Osaka, and other major cities in Japan.

Sincerely,

 


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