"Eco" Going Mainstream in Japanese Construction Industry?

Posted by Jim Ivanoff
April 13th, 2009

Forest_Tour The meaning of being "environmentally friendly" or "eco" as it is referred to in Japan is quite different than in North America. In Japan the focus of the eco movement is primarily just reducing energy consumption and thus both saving money and lowering CO2 emissions. However, maybe just maybe, things are changing.

I noticed a subtle change last week when talking to some of our key clients who took part in past GBMs. We wanted to get their input on the program and how to improve it. We were also interested in how important they thought it was to keep the logging tour component considering the added cost and hard travel schedule involved with it.

While they all said that they were grateful for having been able to take part in such a tour and that it was the highlight of the trip for them, they surprisingly suggested that with eco becoming more of an issue in the industry it is probably no longer appropriate to show a large area being cutdown. While the sustainable forestry message is front and centre during the tour including information on replanting, the image of a landscape reduced to a barren state before their eyes might leave the wrong lasting impression they warned. 

Instead of a logging tour they suggested a tour of a forest with an expert to explain the different species and the history of the forest (how it might have been logged before and replanted, etc.). This kind of tour would better emphasize the forest practices message and leave participants with a camera full of beautiful BC forest pictures.  

Hmm. Even last year all of our guests couldn't wait to hear the roar of chainsaws and to see trees toppling down hillsides. Times are a changing! I guess our tour will have to as well.
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