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Globally Important Agricultural Heritage Systems (GIAHS)

GIAHS Noto's Satoyama and Satoumi

Summary

Noto’s peninsula is characterized by a mosaic of socio-ecological production managed systems referred to as satoyama, terrestrial-aquatic landscape ecosystems comprising secondary woodlands, plantations, grasslands, farmlands, pasture, irrigation ponds and canals, and satoumi, marine-coastal ecosystems comprising seashore, rocky shore, tidal flats and seaweed/eelgrass beds.

The communities of Noto are working together to sustainably maintain the satoyama and satoumi landscapes and the traditions that have sustained generations for centuries, aiming at building resilience to climate change impacts and to secure biodiversity on the peninsula for future generations.

With the loss of biodiversity occurring at an unprecedented rate—up to 1000 times the natural rate of extinction, and climate change being a global reality, business-as-usual is no longeran option. Japan is looking to Satoyama, socio-ecological production managed landscape, as an indigenous prototype of coexistence between humans and nature. Satoyama, along with the nature views, lifestyles, cultural values, traditional knowledge and resource management practices has become for many a symbol of human-managed landscapes where humans and nature coexist in a harmonious symbiotic relationship. Satoyama and its marine counterpart Satoumi have gained momentum and are leading the paradigm shifts to sustainability founded in the traditional cultural heritage of rural communities in Japan.

Under the Satoyama Initiative, Japan is reaching across borders to communities around the globe to work together to enhance understanding and raise awareness of the importance of socio-ecological production landscapes for human well-being and to support the cultural heritage and diversity of socio-ecological production landscapes globally.