Strong in the Rain Paints a Portrait of Survival

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The aftermath of a natural disaster is no simple affair. Even in Japan, a country long accustomed to earthquakes and the tsunamis that inevitably follow, there is an element of unpredictability. The 9.0 magnitude quake that struck on March 11th, 2011, brought with it a tsunami the likes of which had not been seen for 500 years.  Still, it was the nuclear wild card that threw this... Read More

Sustainable Living Tips from Japan: A Review of Azby Brown’s Just Enough

Detail of a screen at Koyasan.

Detail of a screen at Koyasan. As the world faces a future of global warming, increasing economic disparity, and a fiery mix of political turmoils, Azby Brown asks us to take a moment to look back to find the solutions. Just Enough: Lessons in Living Green from Traditional Japan (Kodansha, 2009) takes readers on an intimate tour of Edo Period Japan (1603-1898). In it, Brown points... Read More

Aroma from the Forests of Japan

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> See all Yuica aroma products > See all Kotoha hair care products Taking Care of Our Forests It is perhaps a little-known fact, but approximately 67% of Japan’s land is covered by trees, making Japan the world’s second most forested country, following Finland. While rainforests in Southeast Asia and South America are fast disappearing, Japan still maintains an abundance... Read More

Growing New Life in Ishinomaki with Peace Boat

At work in one of Peace Boat's gardens. 
Photo courtesy of Ikumi Sasaki.

At work in one of Peace Boat’s gardens.Photo courtesy of Ikumi Sasaki. A garden, as every gardener knows, is more than just plants and dirt. A person might first turn the soil out of a desire to save a few pennies or to taste a rare variety of tomato or pepper. The garden often moves beyond plants and harvest to become a beloved space, one where the cares of the day get worked... Read More

More than Cotton: bioRe’s Organic Initiative

Indian woman harvesting bioRe organic cotton.
Photo copyright Panoco Organic Cotton/Remei AG.

Following is the first in a new series of articles about organizations doing a bit of ecotwaza, using traditional practices with a modern twist, to achieve sustainability. We like to think of these global initiatives with a very local focus as going ‘glocal.’ bioRe, the company where IKT sources the organic cotton used to make their wonderful towels, seemed like a perfect... Read More