Once in a while on my way to Smith’s Katsura (スミス英会話 桂) I see a small turquoise blue electric car passing by on the road. This particular car caught my attention on many occasions, because it has a large white slogan ‘Do You Kyoto?’ on both sides.
I’ve wondered about the slogan every time I saw it and thought that it’s probably just a catchy advertisement for some Kyoto travel agency.
But then it occurred to me that every time I spot the car I’m actually in Kyoto. So it would make absolutely no sense as a tourism advertisement as anybody who sees this must be in Kyoto too!
I started asking students at my conversation school (英会話) about this peculiar electric car. Some said that they saw it too, but had no idea what does the slogan mean. Others were suggesting similar ideas to my initial thought about some travel agency.
Quite many students were able to give me an explanation. It’s all about ecology!
You see in 1997 one very important document was signed at the Kyoto Conference Hall. It was the ‘Kyoto Protocol‘ (京都議定書), an international agreement on emission reduction. I’m sure you’ve all heard about it. It was recognised as one of the most important steps towards global emission reduction.
And the small car is a part of big campaign by the city of Kyoto, not only to remind people about the importance of the Kyoto Protocol, but more importantly to ask us all: ‘Are we doing anything good for the environment?’ Do we as individuals take inspiration from this important agreement?
I like the slogan on this little car very much. It’s an occasional reminder that I should do as much as possible to be friendly to the environment around me.
And how about you: ‘Do You Kyoto?’
You can find more about the campaign on: doyou-kyoto.com