This study attempts to clarify the formation of commutation by focusing on transportation, labor, and education in modern Japan. “Commutation” in this study refers to the everyday habit of commuting by public transportation between a home and a workplace in separate areas. Since previous studies analyzed commutation quantitatively on the basis of National Census Reports, they failed to show the prototype and formation of commutation in geography and its cognate disciplines. Some historical studies on metropolitan areas point out that an important factor in the formation of commutation was the growth of residential suburbs, but they do not clarify the causal relationships between the development of commutation and the growth of residential suburbs in modern Japan. The present study therefore clarifies the prototype and formation of commutation from a social historical viewpoint. It shows that increasing commutation by workers and students between urban and suburban areas after the 1920s was closely related to the development of railways, an increase in “white-collar” workers, and an increase in graduates from higher schools. In particular, commutation by workers and by students accounted for the popularization of commutation, and the two were closely related and created a regenerative structure.
Relationships between recession rates of waterfalls and their controlling factors are examined for waterfalls in the Boso district using an equation proposed by Hayakawa and Matsukura (Earth Surf. Process. Landforms, 28, 2003). The long-term mean recession rates of waterfalls are obtained by estimating the original location and age of waterfalls, while the factors affecting the rate are determined with measurable physical parameters including: drainage area and mean annual precipitation of catchments above a waterfall; height and width of waterfall face; and unconfined compressive strength of bedrock. In the present study, measurements are undertaken for eight waterfalls in the middle to southern Boso Peninsula. Together with nine existing data, seventeen data are contributed to the examination of the equation, revealing the equation to be basically applicable to the waterfalls in the studied area. However, derivation of recession rates for some waterfalls remains improved. Similar analyses for other regions should also be continuously undertaken.
The relationships between successional vegetation change and geomorphic conditions were analyzed by using a high-resolution digital terrain model (DTM) and a time series of converted digital vegetation maps combined within a geographical information system (GIS). The results of the analysis confirmed that the pattern of vegetation change is a function of geomorphic conditions (measured in terms of spatio-statistical values of various parameters and time series of those values). Current geoecological studies are usually carried out by means of detailed field observations with high spatial resolution, and the results of our study suggest that a GIS can easily deal with such data over a large area and long time period. In the study area, unforested sites were reforested using Japanese red pine (Pinus densiflora) as part of the forest rehabilitation work that occurred in the early 1950s. After that, two main patterns of vegetation change from pine forest to deciduous broadleaved forest occurred. In one type, the deciduous broadleaved forest reappeared quickly. In the other, the pine forests remained for a long time. Stands that underwent relatively rapid succession were found on north-facing gentle slopes close to large bodies of water. Stands that did not undergo rapid succession were found on steeper, warmer, and drier slopes (often south-facing slopes farther from bodies of water). The rate of forest succession towards deciduous broadleaved forest is a function of these geomorphic conditions. This suggests that forest succession is influenced by intermediate factors controlling by geomorphic conditions of site, such as soil moisture and soil thickness.
The Brazilian Pantanal, the world's largest wetland holding abundant wildlife, has recently drawn profound concern about the development of the tourist industry. To provide significant proposals for ecotourism in the wetland, we believe that detailed data acquired by fieldwork is requisite, This study examines the regional bases that carry regional ecotourism, and attempts to present some proposals for ecotourism from the case of the north Pantanal. The results are shown as follows in order of regional scale. (1) In the water source of the Pantanal, Cerrado region, it is necessary to make efficient plans to control recent agricultural development, especially in soybean and cotton production. (2) On the wetland level, legally protected areas such as national parks and RPPN (Reserva Particular do Patrimônio Natural) should be extended. (3) On the municipal level, environmental subsidies are needed for disused goldmines, and for the maintenance of tourist infrastructures such as Transpantaneira and MT 370. (4) Modern hotels and eco-lodges need to provide ecotourism organized by local people, and to equip the facilities with adequate sewage facilities and garbage recycle plants to preserve the natural environment.