To help transition Japan to a peace promoting post-carbon country while enjoying every step of the process.
僕のビジョンは、祖国日本で、平和文化を育みポストカーボン(Post-Carbon) 社会を促進してゆく事です。

Monday, December 20, 2010

300 Years of FOSSIL FUELS in 300 Seconds

A simple brief journey about Peak Oil by the Post Carbon Institute.
Definitely worth watching even as a resource for how to engage others on this topic. Yeah Richard Heinberg and the Post Carbon crew. They are doing awesome work! You can sign up for their newsletter on their website if this topic is of your interest.

ポストカーボン研究所(Post Carbon Institute)が制作したとってもシンプルな化石燃料時代とピークオイルの解説です。映像で簡単に説明しているので、英語が得意でなくても内容がつかめると思います。ポストカーボン研究所はとっても大切な研究と活動を行っていて、もし時間があれば是非とも日本語訳をしたいのですが....maybe in the future.

Politik Interlude

An invitation to resist corporate and government control over information and civil deceit. Avaaz has an online petition with the goal to get a million signatures supporting WikiLeaks. Whether you sign or not, I highly recommend reading up about the WikiLeaks spectacle. Its impressive that they took on many world governments, especially the US.....a government unfortunately now famous for bending and breaking their own laws and values, torture, and "accidental" deaths. My hope is that WikiLeaks does not get shut down, and that freedom of the press is protected and strengthened. But, thats my view and you must have your own. I can say with confidence that this is a major historical event that will have serious implications for all of our futures. If you haven't seen it yet, check out Noamy's Manufactured Consent video (available to view online) and/or book, as it is related to the WikiLeaks situation and is a great source for reinforcing your media literacy skills. Plus Noam Chomsky is just a cool dude as far as academics go.

Here is what Avaaz has to say:
The massive campaign of intimidation against WikiLeaks is sending a chill through free press advocates everywhere.

Legal experts say WikiLeaks has likely broken no laws. Yet top US politicians have called it a terrorist group and commentators have urged assassination of its staff. The organization has come under massive government and corporate attack, but WikiLeaks is only publishing information provided by a whistleblower. And it has partnered with the world's leading newspapers (NYT, Guardian, Spiegel etc) to carefully vet the information it publishes.

The massive extra-judicial intimidation of WikiLeaks is an attack on democracy. We urgently need a public outcry for freedom of the press and expression. Sign the petition to stop the crackdown and forward this email to everyone -- let's get to 1 million voices and take out full page ads in US newspapers this week!

WikiLeaks isn't acting alone -- it's partnered with the top newspapers in the world (New York Times, The Guardian, Der Spiegel, etc) to carefully review 250,000 US diplomatic cables and remove any information that it is irresponsible to publish. Only 800 cables have been published so far. Past WikiLeaks publications have exposed government-backed torture, the murder of innocent civilians in Iraq and Afghanistan, and corporate corruption.

The US government is currently pursuing all legal avenues to stop WikiLeaks from publishing more cables, but the laws of democracies protect freedom of the press. The US and other governments may not like the laws that protect our freedom of expression, but that's exactly why it's so important that we have them, and why only a democratic process can change them.

Reasonable people can disagree on whether WikiLeaks and the leading newspapers it's partnered with are releasing more information than the public should see. Whether the releases undermine diplomatic confidentiality and whether that's a good thing. Whether WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has the personal character of a hero or a villain. But none of this justifies a vicious campaign of intimidation to silence a legal media outlet by governments and corporations. Click below to join the call to stop the crackdown:

Ever wonder why the media so rarely gives the full story of what happens behind the scenes? This is why - because when they do, governments can be vicious in their response. And when that happens, it's up to the public to stand up for our democratic rights to a free press and freedom of expression. Never has there been a more vital time for us to do so.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

里山 Satoyama: Japan's Secret Water Garden film

There is a beautiful film called Satoyama that has supercharged my excitement to explore sustainable living culture in Japan. I think of satoyama as a harmonious ethno-ecological area that includes managed woodland/forest, village, and rice paddies and/or a garden.

There are two films (1998 and 2004) both narrated by the voice of Planet Earth series David Attenborough, and each follow an area of the satoyama through four distinct seasons. The earlier video follows the terraced rice paddies above Lake Biwa. The second one follows a Japanese man and his village as they live interdependently with nature. The beautiful cinematography (like Microcosmos) zooms in on the various life-cycles of the creatures (lots of bugs, turtles, fish, birds, etc) dependent on the man-altered ecosystem. The film effectively illuminates the interconnections that exist between various organisms and how we are also a part of that beautiful cycle of life and death. I highly recommend it as an introduction to understand permaculture and ethnoecology, and to enjoy the beautiful landscapes and life-styles of traditional rural Japan. Both videos are wonderful journeys into the depths of little known Japan. Great for kids too!

Ah yes, the interconnections and interdependencies of life.

Below is an excerpt from the 2004 film, from a website that you can watch the film as a live stream, but i highly recommend trying to get a hardcopy and watching it with high resolution and on a bigger screen. It makes a big difference. If you google satoyama you'll probably get websites that stream it or that you can download from.

"Each home has a built in pool or water tank that lies partly inside, partly outside its’ walls… A continuous stream of spring water is piped right into a basin, so freshwater is always available. People rinse out pots in the tank and clean their freshly picked vegetables. If they simply pour the food scraps back in the water, they risk polluting the whole village supply. However, carp can scour out even the greasy or burnt pans. They do the washing up in Satoyama villages. This traditional arrangement is called the riverside method. It’s used all over Japan. Cleaned up by the carp, the tank water eventually rejoins the channel.

Imagine a realm where the season’s rhythms rule, where centuries of agriculture and fishing have reshaped the land, yet where people and nature remain in harmony. Sangoro Tanaka lives in just such a paradise. At 83, he’s the guardian of one of Japan’s secret watergardens.

Over a thousand years, towns and villages have developed a unique system to make springs and water part of their homes. From inside their houses, the stream pours into Japan’s largest fresh water lake, near the ancient capital of Kyoto. This is a habitat so precious, the Japanese have a special word for it, satoyama, villages where mountains give way to plains. They are exceptional environments essential to both the people who maintain them and to the wildlife that now share them."


面白い事に、Bullocks Permaculture Homesteadも里山の一種だと感じています。最近、里山のハワイ版の絵も見かけました。お米の変わりにタロイモが主作物になっています。世界中に似たような民族生態システムがあったのですね。日本へますます惹かれてしまいます。

やっぱりDavid Attenborough ( プラネットアース)のナレーションは格別です。

「田んぼ、小川、ため池、雑木林…人々が長い年月をかけて古くから作り上げてきた、ひとつながりの暮らしの場は「里山」と呼ばれる。里山の自然環境はまた、 多くの生きものたちを育んできた「かけがえのない豊かな自然」でもある。琵琶湖畔の「里山」を、写真家・今森光彦さんの撮影とハイビジョンカメラの撮影で 1年間定点取材し、情感豊かな映像で綴る。

国際的にも高い評価を受けた、NHKのドキュメンタリー番組「映像詩 里山」をBD化。田んぼ、小川、雑木林など、人々が年月を掛けて古くから作り上げてきた一連の生活スタイルや、多くの生き物を育んできたかけがえのない豊かな自然を収める。」


滋賀県・琵琶湖畔には、水と深く関わった昔ながらの 人々の暮らしがある。集落の中には網の目のように水路がはりめぐらされ、人々はその豊富な水を利用し暮らしている。その水路を棲家にする生きものたちもま た、人々の暮らしと密接に関わりあってる。春を告げるコイのもんどり漁、初夏のよしず作り、水辺で人知れず羽化するオニヤンマ、晩秋のヨシ刈り、やがて やってくる冬…人と自然が織り成す、命きらめく水の里。

国際的にも高い評価を受けた、NHKのドキュメンタリー番組「映像詩 里山」のBD化第2弾。滋賀県の琵琶湖北部を舞台に、鯉の産卵や漁師の生活など、水と密接な関わりを持つ人々と生き物たちが織り成す世界を斬新かつ美しい映像で描いた珠玉の映像詩。」

Here are the Hawaiian satoyama, Ahupua'a, in picture form for your viewing pleasure.

Oooo, graphics with words.

I would explain more about the Ahupua'a system but basically I'd probably end up reading Wikipedia and a few other sites and rephrase it on the blog, so its probably better if we all do our own research.