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Local government justifies limiting the ascent of Mount Fuji to protect heritage

Local government justifies limiting the ascent of Mount Fuji to protect heritage

Local government justifies limiting the ascent of Mount Fuji to protect heritage

The governor of Japan’s Yamanashi prefecture (west Tokyo), Kotaro Nagasaki, justified this Monday the recently announced restrictions on promotion to Mount Fuji as measures so that the volcano does not lose the status of world heritage that UNESCO granted it in 2013.

This was expressed during a press conference in Japan Foreign Correspondents’ Club (FCCJ) in which he explained his position regarding the protection of Fuji of mass tourism that the Asian country faces, which has exceeded three million tourists per month, a number that is expected to increase.

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“When UNESCO approved the registration (of Fuji as a World Heritage Site), gave us three warnings: that there were a lot of people, that the artificial structures stood out in the landscape and that the environmental impact was high”, Nagasaki explained, worried that the volcano could lose this status.

The governor of Yamanshi recognized that until now “nothing was made” to remedy the situation, but from July 1st, the day the promotion season begins, they will only be able to move up to Fuji 4,000 climbers daily who must pay a fee of 2,000 yen (about 12 euros) if they take the Yoshida trail, the busiest.

Furthermore, anyone who does not make a reservation at one of the volcano’s refuges will be prohibited from climbing between the hours of four in the afternoon and three in the morning to avoid the “bullet climbing”, which consists of climbing without rest and at night to reach the summit at dawn.

Nagasaki He claimed that so far no measures have been taken, beyond the imposition of conservation fees or the existence of security guards, because the national road law prevents cutting off free movement on certain roads.

But local authorities found a solution: “After consulting with the national government, we decided to change the point of beginning of the road (which reaches the fifth station, where the trail begins Yoshida) to a place where it converges with another road that leads to another station and declare the section as an abandoned road under city hall management. to be able to set a toll, the governor detailed.

“If a trail cannot be regulated because it is a road, why not deregulate the road so that it is not subject to highway law?”asked.

Among the reasons for limiting the ascent of Fuji are the inappropriate behavior of hikers, “especially from foreigners“, according to Yamanshiwhich guaranteed that even “they take a nap along the way”. The governor also warned of the risk of “bullet climbers””: altitude sickness or hypothermia.

The growing challenges posed by excessive tourism In Japanese cities that do not have the capacity to manage such a volume of visitors, proposals are emerging to face the challenge, such as establishing different prices for tourists and locals, a measure that Nagasaki is not favorable to.

The governor defends “decentralize tourism” and that visitors also come to “Lesser known areas that are also worth it”. Specifically for Fuji, it proposes revitalizing centuries-old paths by which people climbed the volcano in ancient times.

Source: Elcomercio

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