3 Years On, 30 Pct of Landfill Completed for Okinawa Base Transfer

Politics

Tokyo, Dec. 15 (Jiji Press)--Three years have passed since the Japanese government started landfill work in the Henoko coastal area of Nago, Okinawa Prefecture, for the planned relocation of the U.S. Marine Corps' Futenma air station in a congested area of Ginowan, another Okinawa city.

Landfill has been completed for almost 30 pct of the planned area, and a mood of despair has started to prevail among people in Okinawa opposed to the relocation project.

While Okinawa Governor Denny Tamaki, an opponent of the replacement base construction project in Henoko, is trying his best to lighten the mood as he prepares his bid for a new term in a gubernatorial election slated for autumn next year, the central government is working to keep him in check in order to reduce the risk of the project being disrupted.

The central government started soil placement into the planned reclamation area totaling 152 hectares on Dec. 14, 2018. Of the area, 41 hectares southwest of the cape of Henokozaki has been converted into land. At the end of October, the amount of soil that had been poured in reached about 8 pct of the total projected amount.

In an attempt to block the reclamation work, Tamaki announced on Nov. 25 a decision to reject the central government's application for design changes in the landfill project to reinforce soft ground found east of the Henokozaki cape.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press