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HOME  > Past issues  > 2012 July 18 - 24  > ‘Don’t dig tunnel through Mt. Takao’ appeal dismissed by high court
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2012 July 18 - 24 [ENVIRONMENT]

‘Don’t dig tunnel through Mt. Takao’ appeal dismissed by high court

July 20, 2012
The Tokyo High Court on July 19 dismissed an appeal made by local residents and conservation groups demanding that the national government cancel the approval to build a tunnel through Mt. Takao, a famous tourist spot in suburban Tokyo.

Plaintiffs argued that the construction of the tunnel will destroy the natural environment of the mountain and criticized the government for failing to disclose the data it used in the cost-benefit analysis of the project.

The judge admitted that the construction could damage the natural environment and the landscape of the Takao area as well as harm local residents’ lives by generating air pollution, noise, and vibrations. The judgment states, “Questions still remain” regarding the outcome of the cost-benefit analysis.

However, the court ruled in favor of the defendant arguing that the administration has broad discretion as to decide what a “public benefit” is.

After receiving the judgment, the head of the lawyers for the plaintiffs Suzuki Akihiro said at a press conference, “This is an unjust decision which just repeats the government’s previous claim. However, there are some new points made in it. For example, it criticizes the cost-benefit analysis.”
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