■Conserving Water Quality
in Closed Water Systems
In closed water systems like lakes, reservoirs, inland seas, and bays, water circulation is often poor. This may cause eutrophication, which causes water blooms and red tides, oxygen starvation at the water bottom, and other issues. This impacts municipal water supplies the fishing industry, and other water use.
For this reason, measures against wastewater from factories and business establishments are needed, as well as measures to improve sewers, septic tanks, rural-community sewerage systems and other facilities for domestic wastewater. Additionally, measures for non-point pollution sources such as farms are also needed.
Various measures to conserve the water quality of lakes and reservoirs are implemented in accordance with a plan based on the Law Concerning Special Measures for the Preservation of Lake Water Quality. Measures are also taken to regulate the overall water pollutant load to Tokyo Bay, Ise Bay, and the Seto Inland Sea in accordance with the Water Pollution Prevention Law and other laws.
Firefly Ranger Kids)
The department advertised widely for children-led activities to conserve the water environment related to fireflies, and the Minister of the Environment presented awards for the nationﾕs leading and most unique activities.
Fireflies commonly seen in Japan are either "GENJIBOTARU" or "HEIKEBOTARU." They spend nearly all of their lives around the waterfront.
Information about HOTARANGER:
■Securing an Environmentally
Sound Water Cycle
Due to issues arising from changes in the water cycle, including water pollution, springs going dry, and declining river flows, the department works together with government agencies involved with water to support the creation of plans for water bodies, and carries out specific initiatives to build an environmentally sound water cycle.
nformation about securing an
environmentally sound water cycle:
■Measures to Prevent Pollution
from Agricultural Chemicals
Although agricultural chemicals are necessary for agriculture and other purposes, it is necessary to use them without polluting crops, water, and the like. From this aspect, the Ministry of the Environment establishes the standards to determine whether agricultural chemicals should be registered and those that the users of agricultural chemicals shall obey, in accordance with the Agricultural Chemicals Regulation Law.
■Measures against Ground
To prevent ground subsidence, the pumping of groundwater is regulated in accordance with such laws as the Industrial Water Law and Law Concerning the Regulation of Pumping-up of Groundwater for Use in Buildings.
■Selected 100 Exquisite
and Well Conserved Waters
In March 1985, 100 of Japan's best springs and rivers were selected as "Exquisite and Well Conserved Waters." This listing inspired these communities to form the All Japan Water Environment Conservation Council. The council holds a symposium every year, in order to promote conservation of the water environment and raise awareness of conservation of water quality.
More information about the Selected 100 Exquisite and Well Conserved Waters :
■Selection of Pleasant Beaches
In 2001, the Ministry of the Environment selected the "Best 88 Beaches" in Japan, aiming to expand public awareness and raise interest in water environment conservation. In 2006, a new selection of Japan's "Kaisuiyokujou 100 (Best 100 Beaches )" will be conducted.
More information about
the Best 88 Beaches:
■The Water Environmental
Partnership in Asia (WEPA)
WEPA aims to strengthen governance and capacity building in water environmental management by providing an information platform on water environment conservation. The Ministry of the Environment of Japan is taking a leading role in the implementation of WEPA, with close collaboration with 10 other WEPA partner countries.
Information about WEPA: