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Thursday, 19th November 2015
In General Japan News,

Deforestation tackled with monster campaign

An online campaign has begun to help raise money to fight deforestation in Japan and promote environmental conservation.

It is using the premise of pitting local monsters against each other, with the creature who gains the most money to be declared the victor, reports the Japan Times.

Each of Japan’s 47 prefectures has been assigned a monster, specially created based on the tourist attractions and specialities the region is known for.

Akita Prefecture’s monster, for example, is based on the Tamagawa hot springs in Senboku and is known as Tamagura.

The initiative has been launched by the Dai-Ichi Tsushinsha advertising agency and uses a crowdfunding model to raise money.

It hopes to tap into local pride and encourage people to contribute to the cause by voting on the Gotochi Kaiju, or local monster, website

When the competition finishes on December 18th, the monster with the most donations will be declared the winner and will feature as a character in a smartphone game.

Voting also comes with added benefits to the donor, depending on how much they pledge to the cause.

Smaller donations will see them receive a monster badge or T-shirt, while the donations of 100,000 yen (£531) or more will grant the giver a monster figurine and items associated with the prefecture they voted for.

Around 68 per cent of Japan is forested, which provides a home for various species of amphibians, birds, mammals and reptiles.

Protecting it from deforestation is important not just for the wildlife and the environment, but also to retain the incredible beauty of the country for future generations to enjoy.