Nago fishermen cash in on landfill

Kyodo

The Defense Ministry will pay a fisheries cooperative several billion yen in compensation for losses stemming from a planned landfill project off Nago, Okinawa Prefecture, where the Futenma air base will be relocated, sources said Thursday.

The Nago Fisheries Cooperative Association and the ministry’s Okinawa Defense Bureau signed an agreement on the compensation Tuesday, the sources said. In February 2013, the bureau filed a document with the cooperative association seeking its consent to fill in land off the coast of Nago on the central part of Okinawa’s main island.

The fisheries group, which has the fishing rights to the area, accepted the landfill project in March 2013 at a general meeting. The bureau and the fisheries cooperative then conducted talks on the amount of compensation.

Local residents and Nago Mayor Susumu Inamine have opposed the relocation project, calling for U.S. Marine Corps Air Station Futenma to be moved out of Okinawa Prefecture.

The base, which has a 2,700-meter runway, is in a densely populated district in the city of Ginowan. Japan and the United States have agreed to move it to the less-populated Henoko district of Nago.