Local Government Profile

Saijo, Japan  
Saijo
Size
509.07km2
Population
114,662
GDP
5,902.21 million (FX rate = 78.12 JPY/USD)
Hazard Types
Storm Surge
Name of Mayor
Mayor Mr. Kotaro Ito (The internal focal point in UNISDR for Saijo City is Yuki Matsuoka (matsuoka@un.org).)
  • "Climate change is increasing the frequency of short yet heavy rainfall known as “Guerilla Monsoons” in many parts of the country. Also, Japan lies over multiple major fault lines and is one of the most earthquake prone countries around the world. The possibility of an occurrence of a magnitude 8 earthquake in areas around Saijo City is growing". "The introduction of the United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction campaign came at a very opportune timing. Through Saijo City’s participation in this campaign, we aspire to share our own experiences to the world. We hope that our experiences can be used in other countries to reduce disasters. Furthermore, we hope that the disaster reduction initiatives of all parties involved will mutually benefit and improve through the exchange of information"." Mayor Mr. Kotaro Ito (The internal focal point in UNISDR for Saijo City is Yuki Matsuoka (matsuoka@un.org).)

  • Hazard and vulnerability profile

  • Due to the typhoon of 2004, the rivers of Saijo City were heavily flooded, and the mountainous areas suffered heavy losses due to mudslides and landslides. The soil of the mountain forest was weakened, and erosion occurred on the mountain due to the concentrated monsoon system. Uprooted trees and thinned lumber were caught up in the storm and became a landslide of trees, mud, and rocks. When the landslides approached bridges in the city near the mountains, the water was backed up causing flooding which amplified the severity of the natural disaster damage.

    The rainfall during this monsoon was up to 150mm per hour. Concerning the geology of the area, the Japan median tectonic line runs from east to west through Saijo, and due to movement along this line the faults are weak, and thus the area is one of Japan’s few landslide prone belts. Because this area was inundated by the monsoon, multiple natural disasters compounded simultaneously. Within Saijo City there were 5 casualties, 2 persons critically injured, 23 homes completely destroyed, 91 homes largely destroyed, 8 homes slightly damaged, 489 homes flooded above ground level, 2,121 homes flooded at the foundation level,and the total estimated damaged cost is 5,954,645,000 yen (approximately 59.5 million dollars).

    Since then, we have pushed forward with recovery efforts from these natural disasters, and under the guidance of the Kyoto University Graduate School of Global Environmental Studies, we have reconsidered our approach towards disaster prevention activity.Concerning future natural disaster risks, as a result of the Greenhouse Effect guerilla monsoons (concentrated monsoons) will occur more regularly, and the risk for natural disaster is increasing. Also, within the next 30 years, A massive earthquake is predicted to occur at 60 to 70%. If such an earthquake should occur, it is predicted to be a magnitude 8 level quake, with a force of 270-480gal, and cause a 3m tsunami in it’s wake. We must prepare for the possible occurrence of this earthquake.

  • Disaster Risk Reduction Activities

  • In 2004, Saijo City was hit by record-setting torrential rainfall due to a typhoon that caused extensive damage from city-wide flooding to landslides in mountainous areas. We cannot deny that we were unprepared for this event due to our city’s generally warm and affable climate as well as the lack of serious natural disasters in the past.

    In addition, climate change is increasing the frequency of short yet heavy rainfall known as “Guerilla Monsoons” in many parts of the country. Also, Japan lies over multiple major fault lines and is one of the most earthquake prone countries around the world. The possibility of an occurrence of a magnitude 8 earthquake in areas around Saijo City is growing.

    It is now our imperative to be sufficiently prepared for any natural disasters which may occur in the near future. Since the disaster in 2004, the citizens of Saijo have taken it upon themselves to reassess the value of the bonds between communities and are endeavoring to establish a natural disaster prevention framework in Saijo. Through the increasing awareness among children concerning natural disaster prevention, they will be able to protect themselves and their families. Particularly, we are aiming to increase disaster awareness to attend to areas where there is a large number of elderly populations.

    The introduction of the United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction campaign came at a very opportune timing. Through Saijo City’s participation in this campaign, we aspire to share our own experiences to the world. We hope that our experiences can be used in other countries to reduce disasters. Furthermore, we hope that the disaster reduction initiatives of all parties involved will mutually benefit and improve through the exchange of information.

  • Disclaimer

  • The documents have been posted as received. The designations employed do not imply the expression of any opinion whatsoever on the part of the Secretariat of the United Nations concerning the legal status of any country, territory or area, or of its authorities.

  • Campaign Events

    • 30
      Oct
      2014
      01
      Nov
      2014
    • International Society for Integrated Disaster Risk Management…
    • Canada (London, Ontario)