Excursion

 

Onagawa was one of the most prosperous fishing ports in Japan. However, the 9.0- magnitude Tohoku-Pacific Ocean Earthquake generated a tsunami as high as 15 meters in Onagawa, which caused the town to subside by 1 meter, and completely destroyed its central area. The ria coast of Onagawa and coastal region along the Pacific Ocean had been severely stricken by the tsunami. Various coastal organisms have acclimated to tsunami perturbations and survived in the area. In order to promote reconstruction of tsunami-stricken areas such as Onagawa with respect to fishery and tourism, it might be a promising measure to scientifically focus on the adaptability of coastal ecosystems in the area against tsunami perturbations, and to raise public awareness of the uniqueness of the costal ecosystems and biodiversity. Onagawa Field Center of Tohoku University is a research center of coastal ecosystem in the area. Two PEM students and PhD candidates of Onagawa Field Center (Shun Hayasaka and Shotaro Hirase), and three other PEM students (Hirokazu Abe, Hiromasa Ohno, and Wataru Teramoto), who study in Onagawa Bay, drew up a plan of this excursion.

They held an event near the field center to observe coastal organisms recolonizing the area after the earthquake and tsunami. After lunchtime, participants went to a hill where you can view the ruins of the central area, and the new shopping district built on a high ground.

The purpose of this excursion was to realize the adaptability of coastal ecosystem and local community in a tsunami-stricken area. We discussed new aspects of ecotourism considering the adaptability against tsunami perturbations during this excursion.




Schecule - Saturday, November 19

  • 8:15   Gather at Sendai Station
  • 8:30   Two busses leave Sendai Station
  • 10:10   Bathroom break at a supermarket near Mangoku-Ura Inlet
  • 10:25   Leave the supermarket
  • 10:40   Arrive at Onagawa Field Center of Tohoku University in Onagawa
    We observed coastal organisms recolonizing at a submerged wharf after the earthquake and tsunami. PEM students of Onagawa Field Center and other PEM students, who study in Onagawa Bay, identified and explained the organisms, which was found there.

     


  • 11:45   Have lunch and walk around the Field Center
  • 12:30   Leave Onagawa Field Center
  • 12:35   Arrive at the municipal hospital of Onagawa Town
    We observed the ruins of the central area of Onagawa from the hospital, which is located on a higher ground. We could see the entire view of it from a hill behind the hospital.
  • 13:10   Leave the hospital
  • 13:15   Visit a new shopping district built on a high ground
  • 13:25   Leave the shopping district
  • 13:35   Visit a fish market, Onagawa Marinepal, which is relocacted from the centaral area of Onagawa after the earthquake and tsunami
  • 14:10   Leave Onagawa Marinepal
  • 14:45  Arrive at a public hall of Ishinomaki City
    We discussed new aspects of ecotourism considering the adaptability against tsunami perturbations
    A photo of group discussion

  • 16:40  Leave the public hall
  • 18:30  Arrive at Sendai Station

 

Participants: 47 people

 

Organizers

  • Shun Hayasaka (PhD and PEM Candidate of the Field Science Center in Onagawa, Tohoku University, Japan)
  • Shotaro Hirase (PhD and PEM Candidate of the Field Science Center in Onagawa, Tohoku University, Japan)
  • Hiromasa Ohno (PhD and PEM Candidate, Graduate School of Agricultural Science, Tohoku University, Japan)
  • Wataru Teramoto (PhD and PEM Candidate, Graduate School of Agricultural Science, Tohoku University, Japan)
  • Hirokazu Abe(PhD and PEM Candidate, Graduate School of Agricultural Science, Tohoku University, Japan)
    Organizers: Hayasaka, Hirase, Ohno, Abe, and Teramoto (from the left)

Supervisors

  • Takashi Makino (Assistant Professor, Graduate School of Life Sciences, Tohoku University, Japan)
  • Seiji Ishida (Assistant Professor, International Advanced Research and Education Organization, Tohoku University, Japan)

 


 

Please also see a report about damages of this field center and other facilities of Tohoku University below:

Normile, D. (2011) Japan disaster. Picking up the pieces at ravaged Tohoku University. Science 333, 153–155.