G8 Toyako Summit:

Japan NGO Council on Ageing (JANCA) is a network of NGOs which respond to senior citizens’ desire to contribute to the society and to attain “Ikigai (meaning of life)” in Japan, where one in every 5 people is now aged 65 and over. JANCA also works toward a harmonious society between the old and young generations. One of our focus is the global environmental problem, the urgent issue for all the human beings. With the slogan “We senior citizens are the guardians of global environment,” we have been involved in various environmental protection activities, such as conducting an opinion survey on environmental problems, developing “Seniors’ Action Plans to Tackle Environmental Problems” based on the survey results, and organizing an international symposium on environmental protection.

As a chair of Toyako Summit in July, Mr. Prime Minister, you have a leading role in bringing the international agreement on global environmental problems. With our hopes for your efforts, JANCA would like to make the following 2 proposals.

1. To clearly state that Japan becomes the model country in creating the sustainable global environment with our traditional life culture and advanced technology and to show the course of action accordingly.

2. To include the goals not only for 2050 but also for 2020 based on the goals for 2012-13 in Kyoto Protocol in the course of action. Alongside, to show citizens the concrete efforts we should make and their benefits for us in ways that are easy to understand.

We JANCA members have brought the green back in the ruins of a fire after the World War II. We also have the experiences in overcoming pollution due to the industrialization as well as in developing energy-saving technology. Above all, we have the “Mottainai” spirit that derives from Japanese life culture. As the first generation of the longevity society at a global level, we senior citizens strongly hope that the efforts in environmental protection would be spread worldwide in order to pass the sustainable global environment to the future generations.

Interestingly, this summit will be held around “Tanabata (Japanese Star Festival).” Although we can only participate in writing, we hope for the peace on our mother earth and all the countries. We hope you would kindly consider these proposals with our enthusiasm.

June, 2008

Keiko HIGUCHI and Tsutomu HOTTA
Japan NGO Council on Ageing (JANCA)