Petition Closed

Stop the construction of helipads in the U.S. Marines' training center in Takae, Japan.

This petition had 2,816 supporters

Takae, Okinawa is a small community of about 150 residents in the middle of a subtropical forest which is the habitat for many endangered species. Takae also happens to be adjacent to the United States Marines' training area. There has been a plan to construct additional helipads in the area, and opposing the plan there has been ongoing sit-in protests ever since 2007.

Despite the residents' plea and protests, the Japanese government is forcibly proceeding with the construction. At the time of this writing, a special police force of 1,000 officers has been deployed to Takae to suppress the peaceful protest by civilians who are merely trying to protect their homes and little peace that is left.

If we let this pass, three things are going to happen:

1. There are more than 20 helipads in the area already, and the residents suffer from the ear-breaking sound and the constant fear of possible crashes. The planned construction of additional helipads, with the closest one being only 400 meters away from the nearest residence, will completely surround Takae, making the life unbearable for its residents.
2. In the training zone there are dams and reservoirs serving as the major water source not only for the local area but also for the whole of Okinawa. The majority of Okinawa's residents and tourists depend upon the water source. The additional helipads will cause further contamination of the precious water supply that is vital to sustain the lives and economic activities in the area.
3. The area for the proposed construction is the habitat for many endangered species including the Yanbaru Kuina (Okinawan Rail) and Noguchi Gera (Okinawan Woodpecker). The preservation of the area has been requested by international conservation organizations such as the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). Furthermore, the area has been named as the possible candidate for the World Natural Heritage Site designation. The construction of additional helipads will be detrimental to the biodiversity of the area.

Please show your support to preserve the lives of the people of Takae and wildlife of the surrounding area. By this petition, we are requesting the government of Japan to immediately halt a further construction.


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