Japan’s renowned singer and songwriter, IRUKA, has joined with IUCN and the Ministry of the Environment Japan to champion the Asia Parks Congress, held in Sendai next month from 13 – 17 November. IRUKA has been an IUCN Goodwill Ambassador since 2004, and promotes IUCN’s work through her songs and awareness-raising events.
IRUKA will contribute to the Congress’ opening ceremonies, and is currently working with the Ministry of the Environment and IUCN on additional involvement. Her past conservation work includes holding concerts to promote IUCN’s activities, and promoting biodiversity issues to local governments and educational institutions in Japan. She has also worked on recovery efforts after large Japanese earthquakes. The Asia Parks Congress will focus on disaster risk reduction, and prominently feature Sanriku Fukko (reconstruction) Park, which has risen near Sendai after the devastating northeastern Japan earthquake and tsunami of 2011 as a prime example of protected areas’ importance to local communities for reducing risks, recovery and local conservation efforts.
In addition to her Asia Parks Congress participation, IRUKA is currently working on a new song for IUCN, which is tentatively scheduled for release after the Congress at the end of November. In 2011, she celebrated 40 years as an artist with a series of special concerts for IUCN, as well as promoting biodiversity conservation throughout Japan.