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Sustainability and Prosperity in Japan

Wed, Feb 3, 2010

Country Info

Japan’s ancient culture has long represented a natural, beautiful lifestyle of peace and tranquility; however, the post-World War II technology boom made progression and destruction necessary. In more recent years, the transition toward the 1600’s Edo Period mindset of natural efficiency is proving more successful than merely primitive. For instance, the Slow-Life City Declaration instituted in 2001 has allowed the Japanese to possess a healthier mental, emotional, physical and spiritual uplifting. Buildings are more creatively built, concerts benefit the arts as well as the environment, and leftover supplies are distributed throughout the regions.

Progression Fuels Ambitious Goals

In Tokyo Bay, Japan, a futuristic eco-friendly home was built in December 2009, featuring power roof panels, lithium-ion batteries, hot water pipes as heating, and energy-saving sensors designed and provided by Panasonic. This progressive country is ambitiously creating goals after struggling to meet the requirements of the Kyoto Protocol. At the UN climate change summit in Copenhagen, Japan has put on the table one of the world’s most ambitious targets to cut its carbon dioxide emissions by 25 percent from 1990 levels by 2020.

Reduction and Repair Cut Costs

Additionally, the Japanese will benefit from conserving energy, keeping their wallets a little heavier and electricity bills less daunting. More and more companies such as Panasonic, are diverging out of their comfort zone to offer fluorescent lamp leasing service, in which it sells the ?functions? of comfortable lighting to factories and office buildings rather than fluorescent lamps themselves. Japanese homeowners will also benefit from using fluorescent bulbs that last longer than soft white light bulbs. Among all of this reduction and recycling, repairing old products, rather than buying new and using cost-efficient technology will save large amounts of money and environment.

Wind to Generate Power in Schools

Meanwhile, while the Obama administration is instituting 100,000 wind-powered generators created by the Japanese manufacturer Zephyr Corp in schools, Japan is installing solar power and wind power systems for the nationwide school renovation program. This company”s efficient and low cost “Airdolphin GTO” is part of a grid-connected turbine market that plans to develop internationally.

Getting Serious about Green

Fortunately, Japan is taking desperate measures (or at least pledging to) in order to reduce global warming and further damage. The Japanese Ministry Education, Sports, Culture, Science and Technology, The Japan Meteorological Agency and the Ministry of the Environment are concerned. The mean temperature in Japan has been rising at a pace of around 1.1 degrees Celsius per 100 years since 1898. Therefore, conserving forests, insulating buildings, utilizing unlimited natural resources, flood control, and other destruction-proof precautions are being taken seriously. The attempt to maintain a cost-efficient lifestyle while promoting the slow life mentality may just be the solution to Japan’s problems. Companies and industries internationally will benefit from this progressive thinking.

By Tiffany Teng. Tiffany can be reached at teng3@tcnj.edu.

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