As most readers of this blog are long followers of Japan’s role in promoting effective ocean governance, I’m sure you are all aware of the earthquake and tsunami that struck the northeast region of Japan on March 11th. . This conjunction of natural disasters caused enormous damage that resulted in more than ten thousand fatalities. Many more people have lost their homes and are now enduring harsh conditions in emergency evacuation shelters.
Since the earthquake, we have received many expressions of concern and encouragement from friends and colleagues abroad. I would like here to express my sincerest appreciation for your remembering us in this trying time.
Here at OPRF, we are going about our normal routines, as our building fortunately incurred no more than a few slight cracks in some of the windows. I am happy to report that all of our staff and their families are also safe and well.
Beginning with enquiries from the Global Forum on Oceans, Coasts and Islands, many of our friends have expressed their desire to send donations, and enquired as to what might be the most appropriate relief organization. In this regard, if you wish to support victims of the disaster, I would highly recommend the CANPAN initiative of The Nippon Foundation, as they have long experience in making sure that aid gets to those who need it most.
Thank you for your continued interest in the work we do at OPRF. As Japan recovers from this disaster, I look forward to working with all those committed to creating a safer and more sustainable order on the oceans around the world.