The book describes in great detail a multitude of community-based projects run by engineers and biologists. These projects, carried out mostly on public lands, in general seem more concerned with ecological engineering than with ecological restoration. Conservation of biological diversity in the context of a social movement seeking development of a new relation between society and nature is the driver of these projects, which is also the case for the restoration movement in North America. The primary motivation of several of the case studies presented is the engineered creation of habitat for particular species (e.g., giant salamanders [Andrias japonicas] and Japanese Golden Eagles [Aquila chrysaetos japonica]) or the reconnection and enhancement of habitat for wild animals. Maintaining particular types of cultural landscapes, such as managed woodlands or traditional rice fields, in close proximity to cities is also discussed as is the challenge of restoring areas of “primeval nature” in national parks and controlling nonnative organisms.
The Restoration of Nature in Japan: A Challenge to Ecological Engineering