The Mitsui & Co. Environment Fund

Introduction to Grant Projects

Aso Green Stock Foundation

Preserving a thousand year history of Aso's greenland through volunteer activities to support burning fields.

Activity grant

Project Description

The grassland of Aso has a unique view of undulating hills, which is the largest area of its kind at 23,000 ha, and is a treasure trove of rare plants such as hikodai and ohanashinobu. Although the view of the grassland used to be maintained by a type of field burning called wachikiri (firebreak) for grazing cattle and mowing grass, some parts of the grassland have been devastated because of the liberalization of imported beef, reducing rice acreage, lack of successors, an aging workforce, and labor shortages. We recruit volunteers for helping out with field burning across Japan, and conduct training for the new recruits, teaching about the importance of grassland and the purpose of field burning, and then implement continuous volunteer dispatch work to various locations.

Preservation of surface soil and forestsPreservation of biodiversity and ecosystem
Grant year
FY2008 Activity Grants
Grant term
3 years
October 2008 - September 2011
Grant amount
8,000,000 yen
Activity region
The entire city of Aso, Japan
Volunteer activities to support field burning

Overview of the Organization

Yoshioki Sato, Chairperson(Mayor of Aso)
Yoshioki Sato, Chairperson(Mayor of Aso)
Establishment purpose
We regard Aso's green earth (grassland, woodland, and farmland) as national life property (Green Stock) and aim to hand this down to the next generation through cooperation with the agricultural community, urban community, industry, and government.
Main areas of activity
The entire area of Aso city
4 full-time members, 770 full members
Annual operating budget
53,830,000 yen in 2005, 52,090,000 yen in 2006, 64,800,000 yen in 2007
WEB site
Main Activities
  • (1) Awareness raising and research study for agriculture and its community promotion, and maintaining grassland in Aso area
  • (2) Firebreaks for maintaining grassland and volunteer work to support burning fields
  • (3) Project for Creating water conservation wood forrest
  • (4) "AKA GYU owner system" for grassland conservation and livestock industry promotion.
  • (5) "Green Trust Charity Campaign" to preserve Aso's green and water /li>
  • (6) Promotion of agriculture, forestry, and stockbreeding for maintaining agriculture and forestry.
  • (7) Creating new villages through interaction between the urban and agricultural community and rural life called "Aso yuttato-mura".