This paper aims to examine an analytical framework to describe the development process of transaction relations in fish wholesale markets in Hanoi, Vietnam, from a behavioral point of view. I focus on various resources such as social networks, trading skill, and fluctuation of fish supply as factors in the building and transformation of transaction relations. The accumulation process of resources was analyzed in relation to regional background. Data was collected by interview with wholesalers and suppliers and from their account books. The results show that the wholesalers organize transaction relations using both social networks and their trading skills. The skills were accumulated by female labor in the wholesalers' enterprises not only through the change of labor allocation scheme, but also by the biophysical resources available for sale. Geographical description needs to shed light on how the traders' resources were formed, with more attention to both the socio-political and the physical environment.
This study attempts to clarify the formation of a geothermal greenhouse agricultural area in northern peripheral Japan, and to examine the sustainability of intensive agriculture in terms of its ability to develop natural energy sources. The study area, Nigorikawa in Mori Town, is a pioneering production center of tomatoes grown in greenhouses in Hokkaido. The success relied on intensive utilization of geothermal resources for agricultural purposes, which made economic sense because the rights of access to hot springs were almost of no value. It became possible to pursue high profitability by specializing in tomato growing. However, it is now difficult to maintain sustainability as a production center due to excessive drawing up of water for 827 greenhouses. This depletion of geothermal resources makes it difficult to expand tomato farming. On the other hand, negative side effects of repeated cultivation became worse as rotation farming systems were abandoned in pursuit of profitability. It is also unavoidable to use large amounts of chemicals, which is disliked by consumers. Thus, tomatoes produced in Nigorikawa seem to be lacking superiority in terms of both price and quality. The best strategy to develop tomato production is to create higher added value by pursuing high-quality produce with significantly reduced utilization of chemicals. Consumer demands for “safe and secure” agricultural products are growing rapidly. It is necessary to shift from the mass-producing and mass-consuming system that formed the basis of Hokkaido's agricultural industry in the 20th century, to the sustainable and environmentally harmonic system for the 21st century that prioritizes quality and safety.
Morphology of hummocky patterned ground (hummocks) reflects various physiographic factors such as frost conditions, surface gradient and hydrological environments. Hummocks in a seasonally frozen mire in the Nemuro peninsula include two types in terms of the presence of live sedgy-tussock. Sedged forms (Type Y) concentrate in a waterlogged condition, while sedge-free forms (Type T) are densely or sparsely distributed in a shallow (including waterlogged) or deep groundwater condition, respectively. Morphometric analyses indicate the contrast between high and horizontally circular Type Y hummocks, and wide and vertically half-circular (flatter) Type T hummocks. The distribution and geometry imply that the waterlogged condition promotes hummock development by differential frost penetration (cryoturbation) in combination with deep seasonal frost and sedge-controlled uneven vegetation. The hummock development produces a thermal contrast between the apex and the depression, which enhances differential frost heave. Assisted by flat terrain, these processes produce closely-spaced high hummocks, up to 52cm in height. These results demonstrate that relatively large hummocks intensively occur even in a climatically marginal region for periglacial hummocks (mean annual air temperature=6°C), where flat and waterlogged mire environments with deep seasonal frost enhance periglacial processes.
Present-day distribution and ongoing degradation of permafrost were evaluated by geophysical means in the source area of the Yellow River, located at the northeastern margin of the Tibetan Plateau. Seismic, electrical and/or thermal soundings were undertaken at 15 sites between 3260m and 4790m ASL in 2003-2005. High P-wave velocities (>2kms-1) and relatively high DC resistivities (650-1100Ωm) below a thin uppermost layer show that permafrost 10-30m in thickness occurs above 4300m ASL. In contrast, low P-wave velocities (<1kms-1) throughout the uppermost ten to fifteen meters of sediments indicate that permafrost is absent below 4000m ASL. On widespread alluvial plains between 4200m and 4300m ASL, some sites show subsurface intermediate P-wave velocities (1.5-1.7kms-1) and low resistivities (30-140Ωm) indicating the presence of unfrozen-saturated sediments, while others show high DC resistivities possibly indicating the presence of permafrost. Negative values of the mean annual ground surface temperature (MAST) also indicate widespread permafrost only above 4300m ASL under the present climatic condition. Assuming that the inter-annual variation in MAST follows that in the mean annual air temperature, permafrost is estimated to have significantly thawed on the alluvial plains at 4200-4300m ASL during the last half-century.
This study tried to clarify the ecological damage in the areas of sheep transhumance, after the regime change of 1989, in the South Carpathian Mts. of Romania. The number of sheep increased by a factor of ten per hectare in areas where transhumance was practiced in the South Carpathian Mountains. This was because the sheep cheese produced in this area became more popular and increased in price. Jina and Poiana Sibiului villages are located on the third peneplain (900-1000m a. s. l.) of the Southern Carpathian Mountains, which consists of crystalline schist of Precambrian origin. Soil erosion of common lands and water pollution caused by the transhumance of sheep is a serious problem in these villages. Soil erosion speeds were measured by comparing profiles on Sept. 20, 2003, and Sept. 6, 2004. Soil erosion in these transhumance areas progressed more during that one year. The bedrock is extremely hard and the recovery of soil and vegetation will probably be difficult over the short term. In Patârlagele, where soils were composed of Miocene marl, soil erosion was very prevalent and easily progressed. However, the recovery of soils and vegetation was faster than in Jina and Poiana Sibiului, because of the softer and younger mother rock. In Jina and Poiana Sibiului, the Roma and Bayash people have been washing wool in the creeks. The water was seriously polluted as a result. Results of a chemical analysis showed high sodium, potassium and bicarbonate levels after wool washing. It is recommended that in areas with soil erosion, sheep would not be allowed entry so as to protect nature. Wool washing should be done in plants, where polluted water can be treated before being discharged into natural.
In many regions of the world, the livestock industry provides the only reliable means of living off the land. This paper will discuss transhumance and its multiple global varieties with a focus on transhumance in the Southern Carpathian Mountains in Romania, where the dominant form is intermediate-stationed transhumance. Historical, economic, and environmental conditions in Romania have served to keep sheep transhumance alive, even during and after the postwar Communist era. In addition to linguistic asides illustrating the importance of transhumance in Rumanian language and culture, the author analyzes the geography, history, and transhumance routes of Jina, a key center for the sheep livestock industry. Transhumance continues to influence the local economy as well as family and othernts, includin social arrangemeg traditional shepherding. The aieldwork touthor's fuches on the reasons behind the local development of transhumance. In a specific case that symbolizes the role of sheep in the local economy, the author reports that the majority of a family's income comes from the sale of sheep followed by cheese; wool is a distant third. Finally, the author suggests that transhumance of sheep prevents the development of serious erosion in otherwise erosion-prone areas that can support little beyond livestock raising. The transhumance of sheep in Romania is changing remarkably after the revolution in 1989. On the whole, transhumance is gradually declining. However, some families are expanding the scale of transhumance, while others have settled down to run stock raising operations.