Probably many of you are asking what is the difference or isn’t Kyoto in Japan? There is a difference and yes Kyoto is in Japan? Kyoto is one of Japan’s more beautiful cities but mind you it is also a tourist trap and so here come cause and effect Kyoto is fairly clean. If you look up anything about Japan whether at your local library or bookstore or even on the internet we will not see highlighted in the sites to see sections place like Edogawa (Edo River in Tokyo), Yodogawa (Yodo River in Osaka) or Kanzakigawa (Kanzaki River in Osaka). These are a few major examples where you can find everything you wanted to find in a garbage dump or even a chemical dump. Also Yodogawa features one of the largest homeless communities in Japan, as of December 2010 Yodogawa’s homeless population was estimated to be some where around 740 people. Take a walk along most any city in Japan and look down the small streets, in the parks and in the rivers and streams that run through it and you will see everything from cigarette butts to diapers, old bikes and scooters, nearly anything you can imagine you can find in these places. In Japan garbage day is broken down into regular trash and recyclable trash. Which you would think is a great idea because there is no charge for recyclables. Just wait, regular trash day comes around and there are mountains to be found, now on recyclable day you would think the same would happen, good luck finding more than two bags.
The intention is good that Japan’s want to get people to recycle but in all it just seems another facade. One reason is if you buy snack food in Japan, let us say cookies, each is wrapped in its own wrapping. The wrap is a non bio-degradable product that people just throw away. Japanese love their snacks and nearly ninety nine percent of Japanese snack food comes in one package that when opened reveals individually wrapped snacks. Wrap it twice to keep it fresh. Taking a closer look at the garbage bags on garbage day it can be seen that the content is mostly these little individual wraps. So now the garbage goes to the incinerator where all these petroleum byproducts get get burnt up and release toxic gasses into the air. Okay hold on isn’t this what the Kyoto Protocol is trying to stop, isn’t this one of the factor’s of global warming?
Now back to the rivers where you can find all the sludge you have been dreaming of. On the boarder of Hyogo and Osaka Prefectures you will come across Kanzakigawa known for it chemical, industrial and petroleum factories. Also known as the second most polluted area in Kansai not only for the amount of waste dumped into the river but also for the gasses released into the air by these factories. It has been suspected that a majority of the health problems in this area are caused by the factories but few say anything as the factories are the main means of life and the government seems to turn a blind eye to the fact that the factories are illegally dumping waste into the water. The most pollute area of Kansai is just a five minute train ride down from Kanzakigawa to Yodogawa. Here to Yodogawa is faced with the same problem except there is an added factor that sewage from Osaka Prefecture’s cities that are along Yodogawa dump into it. A major health hazard that the Prefecture will not address.
So if you advocate clean environmental policy should you also enforce it. This is kinda like do as I say not as I do. The final score is Japan Protocol beats Kyoto Protocol four to nil. Maybe next year Kyoto.