Okinawa Environmental Research Support Section
The Okinawa Environmental Research Support Section (OERSS) has launched since April 2019.
This new section includes the network with the Okinawa society, environmental observation networks, and experienced teams supporting those functions, which developed through the OKEON Churamori Project (https://okeon.unit.oist.jp/). We are supporting the terrestrial field surveys and its system conducted in Okinawa. We also aim to contribute to the sustainable development of Okinawa through environmental research and education.
- Provision of support for terrestrial fieldwork in Okinawa
- Maintenance and management of common equipment for terrestrial fieldwork
- Develop, manage, and facilitate the use of the Okinawa Environmental Observation Network (OKEON)
- Maintenance and management of equipment for OKEON
- Execute and manage long-term data collection and sample storage for OKEON
- Contribution to the sustainable development of Okinawan communities utilizing OKEON data, human resources, and collaborative network
Current service for OIST researchers
- Information and network provision and paperwork support for permissions required for terrestrial field sampling in Okinawa Prefecture
- Coordination with the local community to conduct field survey in Okinawa Prefecture
- Providing information about the OKEON Churamori project study area
- Providing supports for field survey in the OKEON Churamori Project study areas
- Return, promotion and its coordination of the academic outputs related to the OKEON Churamori Project to Okinawa society
Every year in Okinawa, workshops on fire ants are held for stakeholders. Yoshi, the leader of OERSS, was invited as a lecturer for one that was hosted by the Naha Port Authority. In his talk titled “How do we prepare for the day when a fire ant is found in Okinawa”, he showed how to differentiate fire ants from the ants commonly found in Okinawa. While we are currently in uncertain times due to COVID-19, the importance of continuing these efforts will remain unchanged.
OKEON Churamori Project created an educational and enjoyable workshop program on alien species and fire ants aimed at Elementary school kids. This program, “Let’s become an Ant Expert Today”, has been delivered mainly by Dr. Suwabe of the Okinawa Environmental Research Support Section and has been hosted by the OKEON team throughout Okinawa since 2017 as a collaborative research project with the CoSTEP of Hokkaido University.
Invitation to the research presentation by final year students at Hentona High School (January 2020)
We were invited to the research presentation by the final year Environmental Studies students at Hentona High School. Under the guidance of Mr. Takara, who has been a collaborator to the OKEON Churamori Project since its establishment, the students have been conducting research on ants.