The regional structure and farming resumption in a tsunami-affected community: The case studies of Otomo and Hirota districts in Rikuzentakata City: Iwate prefecture

Toshihiro Hattori, Natsuki Shimizu, Akemi Saito

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Though tsunami-hit farmland extended over 21,480 hectares (ha) in six prefectures after the Great East Japan Earthquake, the recovery work proceeded smoothly, and the area under cultivation expanded to 15,060 ha by 2014. This paper aims to clarify the current status of farmland restoration and the factors affecting farming resumption. The paper uses the cases of Otomo district and contiguous Hirota district in Rikuzentakata City. In Otomo and Hirota districts, most households carry on both farming and fishing, although they usually choose fishing as the main money-making activity. Therefore, they have had to rely on bearer-farmers (farmers who actually conduct the agriculture in an area) and the community-based farm cooperatives to continue farming. The farmers demanded a recovery-related farmland-consolidation project to establish the foundations of the bearer-farmers and the community-based farm cooperative. The structure of farming differs between the two districts, in spite of the agreement to consolidate the farmland. Paddy fields in Otomo district are grouped and cover large plots, so the farmland can be used efficiently for bearer-farmers’ businesses. All farmers expect that resumption of farming will rely on bearer-farmers. On the other hand, paddy fields in Hirota district are dispersed and small in plot size. Furthermore, settlements are separated from farmlands and fishing villages, and there are no bearer-farmers in the district. Therefore, farmers expect to share roles in the community-based farm cooperative. Thus, Otomo and Hirota districts are making different choices due to the difference in their regional structures.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationAdvances in Natural and Technological Hazards Research
PublisherSpringer Netherlands
Pages355-368
Number of pages14
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2018

Publication series

NameAdvances in Natural and Technological Hazards Research
Volume47
ISSN (Print)1878-9897
ISSN (Electronic)2213-6959

Keywords

  • Agriculture and fishery
  • Community-based farm cooperative
  • Farming resumption
  • Recovery-related farmland consolidation
  • Regional structure

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