Toya-Usu Volcano Meister System

History of Caldera Lake Toya and Mt. Usu

About 110000 Years Ago
Formation Of Toya Caldera
洞爺湖ができた
長い年月をかけて水がたまった
About 50000 Years Ago
Formation Of Nakajima Island(Domes)
About 20000 Years Ago
Birth Of Mt. Usu Stratovolcano
About 10000 Years Ago Collapse Forming Debris Avalanche Deposit
Mt.Usu lost its summit and entered into a period of dormancy.
約1万年前 洞爺湖周辺に人が
石器を使っていた
縄文文化が栄える
ムラや貝塚が作られた
アイヌ文化が栄える
1663 Reawakening & Large Eruption
Some casualties.
Around The End Of 17th Century
No written records,but volcanic deposits found.
1769 Pyroclastic Flow Eruption
>Some houses burned. >The birth of Ogariyama cryptodome.
1822 Major Pyroclastic Flow Eruption
103 casualties,settlement relocated.
1853 Pyroclastic Flow Eruption
>The birth of O-Usu lava dome. >Residents evacuated.
1910 Eruption At The Northwestern Flank
>The birth of Meiji-Shinzan cryptodome. >Successful evacuation,initiation of modern volcanology by Prof. Omori. >1 casualty from hot lahar.
1943-45 Eruption At The Eastern Flank
>The birth of Showa-Shinzan lava dome. >Mimatsu Diagram >1 casualty from ash fall.
1977-78 Eruption At Summit
>Birth of Usu-Shinzan cryptodome. >3 casualties from lahar.
2000 Eruption At The Western Flank
>The birth of 2000 Shinzan. >No injuries or casualties due to successful evacuatin.

Mt.Usu, in south west Hokkaido has been active since the Edo period in 1663. Recently, Mt.Usu has been erupting every 20~50 years, so to coexist with the volcano has become an important theme to the surrounding area.

Toya-Usu Volcano Meisters are the organization who develop sustainable human resources for learning and sharing. Volcano Meisters are the ones qualified to spread disaster preparedness and share the blessings of this area, such as the beautiful scenery, fertile farmland, and healing hot springs.

Coexistence with the changing Earth.

People from many occupations with a passion for action.

  • Planning and conducting disaster preparedness events.
  • Teaching school children about disaster preparedness.
  • Educational tours for students from throughout Japan.
  • Presenting to various media
  • Developing texts and guide books for studying.
  • Geosite maintenance and patrol、etc.

Toya-Usu Volcano Meister brouchure

2018 Issue

(Written in Japanese & English)

Natural disaster risk reduction education by “Volcano Meister”

The preservation of eruption disaster remains of buildings and roads is an important feature of this region. However, the remains themselves do not convey a detailed picture of the experiences and damage at the time the disaster took place. We need people to convey the stories of that time. This is the role of the “Toya-Usu Volcano Meister”: local residents with extensive knowledge of volcanoes who can teach about geo-hazards and disaster risk reduction. Their disaster risk reduction education activities are an important feature of this region and a valued element of the UNESCO Global Geopark.

Volcano Meister is a human resources development system developed in 2008, which is operated by the Hokkaido Government Iburi General Subprefectural Bureau and Toya-Usu UNESCO Global Geopark Council which also form the head office. In preparation for the eruptions which are thought to continue in the future, this initiative aims to increase the number of individuals in the region who can educate about disaster risk reduction. At present, there are 52 active certified Volcano Meisters.

Because this qualification is limited to residents of the one city and three towns in the geopark area, in normal situations it is required that they not only conduct disaster risk reduction education activities, but also work to convey the value of the UNESCO Global geopark. When an eruption draws near, they urge the speedy evacuation of the area. With regards to tourism, they utilize their knowledge about Usu Volcano and experience of previous eruption disasters to give guided tours that leave visitors with a strong sense of satisfaction, featuring explanations of a wide range of topics including the value of the region and the blessings brought about by the volcano.

Certified Volcano Meisters range from 20 to 80 in age, come from various different workplaces and have various areas of expertise. They are tourism association staff, owners of Japanese-style lodgings (ryokan), nature guides, mountain guide instructors, artists, visitor center and ropeway staff, photographers, local councilors, chamber of commerce staff, Ministry of Environment staff, active rangers, and municipal government staff.

In 2011, the autonomous “Volcano Meister Network” was established. Alongside holding study workshops to pass on their experience of evacuations from previous eruption disasters and knowledge about disaster risk reduction and work as geotour instructors, the network is actively involved in activities to share the value of the Toya-Usu UNESCO Global Geopark widely both inside and outside of the region.

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Volcano Meister Network Homepage
(Written in Japanese)

How to become a Volcano Meister

The examination is held once a year.

It is the duty of qualified Volcano Meisters to be active in the community.

So the contents of the oral exam are held in the field and thru an in-depth interview about your personal vision for the future.

Toya-Usu Volcano Meister Collaboration Committee

Contact
Toya-Usu UNESCO Global Geopark Council Office
Address c/o Toyako-cho Town Office 58 Sakaemachi, Toyako-cho, Abuta-gun, Hokkaido 049-5692, Japan
TEL +81-142-74-3015
FAX +81-142-76-4727
E-MAIL info@toya-usu-geopark.org
Hokkaido Government Iburi General Subprefectural Bureau
Address Muroran Wide Area Center Building,1-4-1 Kaigan-cho, Muroran City, Hokkaido 051-8558, Japan
TEL +81-143-24-9567
WEB Homepage(Written in Japanese)

Reference Material

Volcano meisters are teachers, guides and communicators

Poster

2015

YUI KAWAMINAMI (Volcano meister)

PDF【3MB】

Toya-Usu Volcano Meisters as an Interpreter of the Global Geopark and Disaster Prevention

Poster

2014

NIRE KAGAYA (Volcano meister)

PDF【2.5MB】