World record-holding free diver impressed with Oura Bay speaks up against land reclamation

World record-holding free diver impressed with Oura Bay speaks up against land reclamation

World record-holding free diver Sayuri Kinoshita says her impression of Oura Bay is a place with “calm and gentle waters.” Photograph taken on August 1 in Nago.


August 2, 2016 Ryukyu Shimpo

On August 1, Sayuri Kinoshita, a 27-year-old world record-holding free diver from Nagasaki, went free diving in Oura Bay, Henoko. Her diving took her into underwater caves and similar places at Ino, Henoko, and two other locations. Although she has been diving in oceans all around the world, in regard to Oura Bay she said, “[It has] many living creatures and small fish in calm and gentle waters.”

Kinoshita has been diving in oceans throughout the world, such as the Caribbean Sea around Central and South America and the Mediterranean Sea. She has been practicing free diving at Cape Maeda in Onna Village, but this was the first time she had been diving on the east side on Okinawa Island. According to Osamu Makishi, a boatman familiar with the area, this time of year there is a lot of plankton and the water is cloudier than usual. However, Kinoshita was left with a deep impression as, “The light visible from the caves, shining through the clear water was very beautiful.”

In regards to the land-reclamation project in Henoko for the purpose of relocating Futenma Air Station, Kinoshita said, “it is simply a waste.” She went on to say, “Nature that took 500 or 600 years to flourish will take only an instant to be destroyed.” To emphasize her point she explained, “[That nature] cannot easily be recovered; it will take time.”

(English translation by T&CT and Erin Jones)

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