Japan’s poorest prefecture is Okinawa — and on Okinawa the poorest region lies along the northeastern coast blanketed by the dense Yanbaru jungle. Here, the villages of Higashi and Kunigami were the last areas on the island to receive electricity and running water. Until 1978, they lacked even a paved road.
Yet when it comes to biodiversity, this is one of the richest places on the planet, with almost a dozen unique species, including the noguchi gera, an endangered woodpecker that has become a symbol of the prefecture.
View original post here: Rumbles in the jungle
The U.N. commission on seabed claims has adopted a recommendation allowing Japan to vastly extend its claimed continental shelf area far to the east of Okinawa, government officials said Saturday.
The U.N. Commission on the Limits of the Continental Shelf has recognized around 310,000 sq. km of seabed around Okinotori Island as part of Japan’s continental shelf — an area equivalent to about 82 percent of Japan’s total land area, the officials said.
Go here to see the original: U.N. OKs Japan claim to expand shelf
Okinawa Prefecture on Saturday became the first area in the nation to enter the rainy season, the weather agency said.
The season began 11 days earlier than average and two days earlier than last year, the Meteorological Agency said, adding that the stretch of heavy precipitation usually ends around June 23.
Read more: Rainy season kicks off in Okinawa
Tokyo and Washington agreed Friday to move about 9,000 U.S. Marines out of Okinawa as part of the ongoing realignment of the U.S. forces in Japan, leaving about 10,000 marines in the prefecture.
Of the departing contingent, 4,000 will be stationed on Guam and the rest mainly in Hawaii and other areas, a Defense Ministry official said, elaborating on the joint statement.
Read more: U.S., Japan tweak marine exit plan
Okinawa Gov. Hirokazu Nakaima was a bureaucrat at the now-defunct Ministry of International Trade and Industry when Okinawa reverted back to Japanese control in 1972.
Asked about his emotions at the time, Nakaima, 72, said in an interview in early March that he felt he “had become Japanese both in name and substance,” after spending nearly 30 years under the postwar rule of the United States.
See more here: Nakaima recounts fall and rise of Okinawa
Defense Minister Naoki Tanaka on Tuesday ordered the Self-Defense Forces to prepare missile shield elements to intercept a rocket North Korea plans to launch next month.
The preparation order will enable the SDF to begin examining locations to deploy ground-based Patriot Advanced Capability-3 missile batteries on Okinawa, Ishigaki and Miyako islands, and in the Tokyo metropolitan area.
The rest is here: Tanaka ratchets up SDF missile shield standby
Regarding the March 21 Kyodo article “Patriot missiles may be deployed in Okinawa to counter North Korean rocket”: Why is there such an overreaction to this planned satellite launch?
Do you think North Korea would [react in this way]? Japan, the United States and other Western countries are letting the imaginations of their leaders run away with them.
See the original post here: Afraid of their own shadow
Takehiro Ishikawa hit a pair of RBI singles Saturday as the Yokohama DeNA BayStars won their first preseason game by rallying to beat the Yomiuri Giants 4-3.
New captain Ishikawa’s second hit of the afternoon, off reliever Yasunari Takagi, broke a 3-3 tie in the eighth inning at Okinawa Cellular Stadium.
Read more from the original source: Stars edge Giants in preseason opener
The city of Naha, Okinawa, will cancel an event using snow from Aomori Prefecture amid concern that it might be tainted with radiation from the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant.
The 600 kg of snow carried to Naha from the Aomori town of Towada — roughly 350 km away from the crippled plant — was proved safe after Naha checked it for radiation, city officials said.
Read the original post: Fearing radiation, Naha cuts Aomori snow fete