About usAbout Japan for Sustainability (JFS)


Our Mission

Accelerating the Move toward a Truly Happy and Sustainable Future by Facilitating Communication between Japan and the World

Japan for Sustainability is a non-profit organization that focuses on sharing information about interesting and exciting trends and initiatives in Japan to create a happier and more sustainable society. We hope that our generation can pass a beautiful Earth on to the future generations. We aim to spread inspiration, insight, motivation and encouragement in Japan and around the world, to both developing and developed countries.

Our Vision

People today are totally engrossed in social and economic structures that require our economies to continue growing under a paradigm of the supremacy of economic growth. As a result, human economic activities have exceeded the carrying capacity of the Earth, in terms of both the supply of resources and energy and the ability to absorb carbon dioxide emissions and hazardous waste from human activities. Global warming and biodiversity crises are just symptoms triggered by exceeding the Earth's limits. These circumstances are threatening the potential for this generation to sustain our current quality of life and threatening the well-being of future generations.

At the same time, these social and economic structures have broken the connections between people, communities, society, nature, countries and the Earth. We cannot live without being connected with other people and society. But we have overlooked the things are truly important - connections with our inner selves, with society and with nature. This is a result of a short-sighted and blinkered obsession with efficiency. I believe that many social problems and global environmental degradation are the inevitable consequences of our having lost important connections.

To address these root problems, various efforts are taking place and spreading across Japan. Examples include initiatives to integrate traditional ideas and wisdom (like the concepts of "mottainai" (Don't waste!) and "harmony with nature") into corporate activities and community development. Or other initiatives utilizing advanced Japanese technologies to enhance sustainability. Or a wide range of efforts by national and local governments, grassroots movements by citizens and non-profit groups. Or efforts to bring back the connections among people and society.

On top of all this, Japan has entered an era of declining and aging population. But this is a chance to shift toward a "steady-state society," which can live happily within the carrying capacity of the Earth. Various initiatives are starting to put this idea into practice. I believe it is also important for Japan to share the lessons we have learned from the Great East Japan Earthquake - particularly the dual disasters of the earthquake and tsunami that occurred in March 2011, followed by accidents at the Tokyo Electric Power Company's Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant.

In the midst of deteriorating conditions of the global and local environment, new attempts and efforts to change things for the better are happening in Japan and around the world. Unfortunately, the situation with the global environment is likely to continue worsening for the time being, and that could drive people into despair. But even so, I hope that positive information from Japan, delivered every day, will motivate people to hang on a little longer and be positive. The word "for" in "Japan for Sustainability" has two meanings. One conveys the "contribution" that Japan can make to create a more sustainable world, and the other conveys the "direction" Japan would like to go to be more sustainable. JFS hopes to serve as a "fountain of hope" for the world.

Junko Edahiro,
Chief Executive, Japan for Sustainability