2009年 09月 08日 ( 4 )

Ambitious target depends on other nations' actions

Japan will target a 25 percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2020 from 1990 levels, Yukio Hatoyama reiterated (繰り返して言う、改めて表明する) Monday.

Hatoyama's target is more ambitious than that of the man he will be succeeding as prime minister, Taro Aso, and one that has drawn fire (非難を招く、反発を招く) from industry.

"We will change the government's current policy, based on our platform (政治要綱)," Hatoyama said in a speech in Tokyo. His Democratic Party of Japan has promised to cut Japan's emissions by a quarter over a 30-year period.

Hatoyama urged other major countries to agree on "ambitious" reduction targets, saying such an accord (調和、合意) will be a "precondition (前提条件)" for Tokyo's renewed emissions cut goal.

"We will aim to establish a fair and effective international framework involving all major countries in the world" to fight global warming, he said.

The goal is contingent on (~を条件とする、~次第で) other countries adopting similar targets, Hatoyama said. The European Union is urging wealthy economies to cut greenhouse gases by 2020 under a new United Nations treaty to fight climate change.

Almost 200 countries will meet in Copenhagen later this year to forge an agreement to replace the Kyoto Protocol after it expires in 2012.

"Our country can't stop climate change even if we achieve our reduction targets," Hatoyama said. "The world's leading nations must strive for an international framework that is fair and effective."

Aso proposed in June reducing greenhouse gas emissions 8 percent by 2020, saying bigger cuts would hurt business competitiveness.

The Japan Business Federation (Nippon Keidanren), the nation's top business lobby (圧力団体), has said it opposes any cut bigger than 6 percent. It said in May that a 4 percent increase from 1990 levels was the "most rational goal" in terms of viability and the financial burden on consumers.

Hatoyama said developing nations need to launch efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions "in the process of achieving sustainable (継続維持可能な) development and eliminating poverty under the principle of 'common but differentiated (分化した)responsibilities.' "

The DPJ-led government will study ways to financially and technically assist developing countries in grappling with (~に取り組む、立ち向かう) climate change, he added.

"As soon as the new Cabinet is launched, I will begin studying concrete steps to provide such support to bring it to the international community as the 'Hatoyama Initiative,' " he said.

He also stressed that curbing (抑制する) climate change will benefit Japan's economy, saying: "Building a society not dependent on carbon (炭素) will offer a big chance for Japan. Proactive (先を見越した、事前に行動を起こした) efforts to curb global warming through the development of electric cars and solar power will create a new frontier and new jobs."

Under the Kyoto agreement, Japan pledged a 6 percent cut from 1990 levels by 2012. Instead, emissions have risen 8.7 percent.

Determining how much affluent (裕福な) countries, including EU members, Japan, the United States and Australia, should reduce emissions is one of the hurdles (障害物) to a new U.N. treaty.

by yu-fen-sun | 2009-09-08 22:56 | 英語関連
Super typhoons in store (待ち構えて) as seas warm

A super typhoon stronger than the deadly Hurricane Katrina that devastated (壊滅させる) the southern United States in 2005 could hit Japan in the latter half of this century if global warming continues, according to a study by a Japanese research team made available Monday.

Typhoons packing winds (最大瞬間風速) of at least 241.2 kph are often called super typhoons, but the one feared by the researchers could blow as strong as 288 kph on the ground, the team from Nagoya University and the Meteorological Research Institute said.

Several super typhoons may also develop between 2074 and 2087 due to a projected 2-degree rise in sea temperatures in the Western Pacific south of Japan, the study showed, based on a scenario drawn up by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change in which average global temperatures will rise about 3 degrees from preindustrial levels (産業革命前水準) by the end of the century.

"Given that global warming is under way, it is little wonder that typhoons develop in an extreme way," Nagoya University associate professor Kazuhisa Tsuboki said. "The point is how we will forecast them and take disaster control measures."

Using the Earth Simulator supercomputer, the team predicted in detail the occurrence and development of typhoons around Japan during the 2074-2087 period.

A rise in sea temperatures generally makes typhoons more powerful because they develop by taking energy from warm seas. Such typhoons would also bring heavy rain because warmer temperatures will increase water vapor (水蒸気) in the air.

If global warming is arrested (阻止する), super typhoons are less likely, the team said.

One of the expected super typhoons could have a minimum atmospheric pressure (大気圧) of 866 hectopascals at its center and maximum winds of 288 kph on the ground, which is stronger than Katrina at 902 hectopascals or the devastating typhoons that have struck Japan.

It could have a short, steep decline in central pressure and rapid development, according to the team.

Another predicted typhoon could bring more than 1 meter of rainfall to the Tohoku region, according to the simulation.

by yu-fen-sun | 2009-09-08 22:29 | 英語関連
Not long ago at Fort Bragg, N.C., the country's largest military base, seven soldiers sat in a semi-circle (半円), lights dimmed, eyes closed, two fingertips lightly pressed beneath their belly buttons (お臍) to activate their "core." Electronic music thumped as the soldiers tried to silence their thoughts, the key to Warrior Mind Training, a form of meditation slowly making inroads (侵入) on military bases across the country. "This is mental push-ups," Sarah Ernst told the weekly class she leads for soldiers at Fort Bragg. "There's a certain burn. It's a workout."

Think military and you think macho, not meditation, but that's about to change now that the Army intends to train its 1.1 million soldiers in the art of mental toughness. The Defense Department hopes that giving soldiers tools to fend off (払いのける、かわす) mental stress will toughen its troops (軍隊、部隊) at war and at home. It's the first time mental combat is being mandated on a large scale, but a few thousand soldiers who have participated in a voluntary program called Warrior Mind Training have already gotten a taste of how strengthening the mind is way different - dare we say harder? - than pounding out the push-ups (激しく腕立て伏せをする).

スポーツ全般においても、Mental Toughnessは重要です。
最高のSelf Managementは最高のパフォーマンスを促します。
by yu-fen-sun | 2009-09-08 15:52 | 英語関連
A New York man is donating his 320th pint of blood this week, making him one of two people in the U.S. who has given 40 gallons.

Seventy-five-year-old Al Fischer of Massapequa (mass-ah-PEE'-kwah) plans to reach the milestone (金字塔を打ち立てる) Tuesday, 58 years after he started giving blood.

According to a New York Blood Center official, only 83-year-old Maurice Wood has donated more blood than Fischer. Wood is a retired railroad inspector from St. Louis.

Fischer, a print shop operator, donates blood about six times a year. He says he and Wood are engaged in a friendly rivalry and last spoke to each other a few months ago.

Long Island Blood Services executive director Harvey Schaffler says Fischer has helped almost 1,000 people.

by yu-fen-sun | 2009-09-08 15:16 | 英語関連