Special Screening of "NUCHI NU MIJI" and Press Conference with
Yoshiyasu Iha, Prof. Kunitoshi Sakurai and Hideko Tamanaha
(Liaison Association to Protect Citizens' Lives from PFAS Contamination)

Friday November 25, 2022
Film screening: 13:00 - 14:15
Press conference: 14:15 - 15:00

Directed by Jon Mitchell and Natsuko Shimabukuro
In Japanese with English subtitles

Japan, 2022 72 minutes
Film courtesy of Ryukyu Asahi Broadcasting Corp.

Commemorating this year's 50th anniversary of Okinawa’s reversion to Japan, co-directors Jon Mitchell and Natsuko Shimabukuro have produced a documentary exploring the complex relationship between Okinawans, the Japanese government and the US military, which operates 31 bases in the small prefecture.

"Nuchi nu Miji - Okinawa's Water of Life" traces how the island’s water supply has become severely contaminated by highly toxic fluorinated substances called PFAS. These "forever chemicals," heavily used by the military, have leaked into the water and soil, exposing 450,000 residents in the largest environmental catastrophe in the island's history. However, due to longstanding agreements, neither the US nor the Japanese governments will take steps to solve the problem.

As it depicts the residents' struggles to secure access to safe drinking water, "Nuchi nu Miji" illuminates many Okinawans' sense of betrayal and abandonment by both Japan and the United States. The documentary is essential viewing for all those interested in modern Japanese history, environmental justice and the global struggle for water rights by indigenous communities.

Joining co-directors Jon Mitchell and Natsuko Shimabukuro at a press conference following the film will be Yoshiyasu Iha, Prof. Kunitoshi Sakurai and Hideko Tamanaha, members of the Liaison Association to Protect Citizens' Lives from PFAS Contamination. They will discuss the substantive results of PFAS blood and environmental tests, conducted in the summer of 2022. The civic group organized and funded the test drive, and with the aid of Associate Professor Kouji Harada of Kyoto University, who analyzed all the samples, revealed extensive contamination that cannot be ignored. With PFAS pollution recently discovered near US military facilities in mainland Japan, too, the Liaison Association members will discuss the urgent need to clean up the problem at its source, starting with revisions to US-Japan bilateral agreements.

Natsuko Shimabukuro is a director with Ryukyu Asahi Broadcasting Corporation. Her documentaries about Okinawan history, politics, and environmental problems have won Japan's top TV prizes, including the prestigious Galaxy Award.

Jon Mitchell is a correspondent with Okinawa Times and the author of four books about Okinawa's environment, including Poisoning the Pacific (Rowman & Littlefield), a winner of the 2021 US Society of Environmental Journalists' Book Award.

Yoshiyasu Iha, Prof. Kunitoshi Sakurai and Hideko Tamanaha are members of the Liaison Association to Protect Citizens' Lives from PFAS Contamination.

How to attend:
Please register at front@fccj.or.jp with your name, the name of your media outlet, and FCCJ membership number. Due to space restrictions, attendance for both the screening and press conference will be limited. Doors open 15 minutes before the start of each event. Please sign in, giving your name and contact details at the reception, and have your temperature taken before proceeding. Masks are mandatory.

How to watch online: https://www.youtube.com/c/FCCJchannel/live
The film will not be screened online. Livestreaming of the press conference only will be available, and video will be uploaded to our FCCJ YouTube channel.

How to ask questions: https://forms.gle/ydSY2qGX9SUdkpi57
It is recommended that press conference attendees first attend the film screening. Members watching the press conference online can submit questions for the speakers in advance using this submission form.

TV crew: Please make a reservation at front@fccj.or.jp. Doors open for TV crews before the film screening from 12:30.

Doors open for TV crews only 30 minutes before the event.

A joint Film Committee-PAC event
Tetsuo Jimbo and Martin Koelling, Professional Activities Committee and
Karen Severns and Ilgin Yorulmaz, Film Committee

特別上映: 命ぬ水 (ぬちぬみじ)、記者会見
伊波 義安、桜井 国俊、玉那覇 淑子

ディレクター: 命ぬ水 (ぬちぬみじ)
島袋 夏子(琉球朝日放送)