ガイアの由来

Let’s take back G-axis!

Take back G-axis. Be conscious about your life. Be thankful to the fact that Gaia sustains your life.

Since millions of years ago, human beings have lived with Gaia - sometimes being protected and nurtured, and other times threatened and damaged. When living closely with Gaia, people naturally became conscious about and thankful to their lives and Gaia. However, in the late 20th century, we have achieved economic development and technological innovation, and seem to have forgotten respect and gratitude toward Gaia.

Each one of us should realize the very basic fact of our life. Appreciate Gaia’s support to our lives. Express gratitude in your action, and spread the action to people around you. Gaia Initiative wants to act with you.


Gaia is at crisis

In the dark, vast space, Gaia is the only planet that supports life forms. For the last 3.8 billion years, all the lives from bacteria to plants and animals have interacted with one another and lived together on this planet(*1).

Climate change, water pollution, water shortage… so many global environmental problems are becoming more and more serious. In the northern hemisphere, the second half of the 20th century recorded the highest temperature in the last 1,300 years(*2). In August, 2007, the ice over the Arctic Ocean shrank to the smallest size in the recorded history(*3). Moreover, water, the very basic element for sustaining every life, is in short in many places of the world. By 2050s, over 1 billion people will suffer from water shortage, according to IPCC(*4).

On the other hand, CO2 emissions trading has started, and funds are now on the move to invest in the companies with environmentally-advanced technologies. These are the innovative ways to mitigate global warming and environmental destruction. They may be enough for our generation to survive. But probably not for our children and grandchildren. Our children’s and grandchildren’s generations are likely to face difficulties even in sustaining their lives. We do not have time to waste. Gaia is already in danger.

  • *1: Dr. James Lovelock proposes "Gaia Theory".
  • *2: IPCC Fourth Assessment Report
  • *3: Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency(JAXA) Press release on August 16, 2007
  • *4: IPCC Fourth Assessment Report

Criteria for "Success"

In the 20th century, happiness and success were measured by "money" and "efficiency". Successful individuals were those who had large income and asset, while successful corporations were those with large revenue, profit, and market capitalization. Likewise, nations were ranked by their economic power – GDP.

Things are changing. Nowadays, even if you live in rich countries – Western Europe, U.S. or Japan – you cannot escape from increasingly intense and frequent natural disasters such as hurricanes, heat waves, and earthquakes. Regardless of the amount of money one has, climate change and environmental destruction will affect everyone on Gaia, sometimes even threaten one’s life. How can we overcome these challenges? Can we achieve "success" By pursuing "money" and "efficiency"? when the world’s future is increasingly becoming uncertain?


Take back G-axis

The 21st century requires not only "money" and "efficiency" but also the 3rd element, G-axis (Gaia - axis), as the core values of the society. It is nothing new. It is nothing difficult. It is to remember what we have forgotten while busy pursuing economic outcome – to be conscious about and thankful to your life and Gaia. Keep it in mind everyday and express it in your action.

Personal life is no longer measured by income, size of your house, school names, and positions. More people choose a lifestyle in which their achievement is not necessarily expressed in numbers. More people choose to buy environmentally-conscious products. More people are interested in where vegetables for dinner come from. People always want to do something that makes your family smile. However small it is, your action matters.

 

Business needs G-axis, too.

In the past, corporations explored and utilized the environment and natural resources. What did they return to Gaia? They returned more burdens (i.e. destruction and pollution) than respect and gratitude.

In the 21st century, corporate executives need to take G-axis into consideration along with existing values of "money" and "efficiency". (See diagram below)

For instance, here are questions for executives:

  • How much amount of water does your company consume and release as wastewater?
  • How much amount of CO2 does your company emit?
  • Does your company procure resources in an environmentally-sustainable manner?
  • Do you know where your products go after use and how they are disposed?
  • Are your employees and their family happy?
  • Does your company respect neighboring community’s needs for resources and nature?

And the last but most important question is:

  • How do you reflect your answers to the above questions to corporate strategy and decision-making?

These are the challenges not meant for a certain department of the company, but for top management. Top management must tackle these challenges by themselves at all times. How to cope with Gaia is one of the main business themes that directly influence the future of the company and the society.