Nature & Parks

The First National Report - Chapter 3

[International Cooperation] The First National Report under The Convention on Biological Diversity

Chapter 3. Basis of Measures for Conservation and Sustainable Use

3.1 Major Legislation and Guidelines

One of the purposes for formulating the National Strategy is to promote and coordinate relevant measures. In Japan, there are many existing laws relating to the conservation of biological diversity and its sustainable use and various measures are implemented based on these laws. For example, the Basic Environmental Law promotes comprehensive and systematic policies for environmental conservation; the Nature Conservation Law promotes comprehensive conservation of the natural environment; the Natural Parks Law promotes conservation and utilization of natural parks; the Law for the Conservation of Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora, and the Law for the Protection of Birds and Mammals and Hunting promote the protection of wild animals and plants and appropriation of hunting; the Law for the Protection of Cultural Properties promotes designation, preservation, and management of natural monuments; the Forest Law and the Forestry Basic Law promote conservation and utilization of forests; the Fishery Law and the Preservation of Fisheries Resources Law promote conservation and utilization of aquatic life; the Urban Green Space Conservation Law promotes conservation and creation of green spaces in urban areas; and the City Parks Law promotes the construction and management of urban parks.

In line with these laws, the Basic Environment Plan, the Basic Policy for Natural Environment Conservation, the Basic Policy for Rare Wild Animals and Plants Species Conservation, and the Basic Plan for Forest Resources have been formulated. All of these are national policies or plans closely related to the conservation of biological diversity and the sustainable use of its components.

[International Cooperation] The First National Report under The Convention on Biological Diversity

Chapter 3. Basis of Measures for Conservation and Sustainable Use

3.2 Organizational Framework for the Promotion of Measures

The Inter-ministerial Coordinating Committee to the CBD was established in January 1994 to facilitate the implementation of CBD. The Committee consists of director-generals or the equivalents of the ministries and agencies relating to the conservation of biological diversity and the sustainable use of its components. The chairman of the Committee is the Head of Nature Conservation Bureau of the Environment Agency. As of July 1997, the Committee has 12 member ministries and agencies including the Environment Agency, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Cabinet Department of Domestic Consultation, the Science and Technology Agency, the Ministry of Finance, the Ministry of Education, the Ministry of Health and Welfare, the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries, the Ministry of International Trade and Industry, the Ministry of Transport, the Ministry of Construction, and the National Land Agency. The Committee is responsible for drafting the National Strategy and holding public hearings. It also checks the status of respective measures implemented based on the National Strategy.

[International Cooperation] The First National Report under The Convention on Biological Diversity

Chapter 3. Basis of Measures for Conservation and Sustainable Use

3.3 Development of the National Strategy

3.3.1 Purpose of Developing the National Strategy

There are 3 million to 30 million or more species living and breeding on earth, together they form a diverse ecosystem. Such ecosystem is the base for human existence; it also provides various blessings for humans. Today, there is the danger of loss of biological diversity worldwide due to human activities. Conservation of biological diversity has become an urgent issue that must be addressed by protecting the global environment through international cooperation.

As stated above, Japan is blessed with a natural environment with diverse kinds of wildlife. On the other hand, the habitats for wildlife have greatly decreased or disappeared due to development activities, threatening the existence of many species. Under the CBD, Japan is responsible for preserving its biological diversity for the future, as it will also contribute to the conservation of biological diversity in the world and the sustainable use of its components.

Japan concluded the CBD in 1993 and then started implementing activities to promote the conservation of biological diversity and the sustainable use of its components.

In Japan, measures relating to the conservation of biological diversity and the sustainable use of its components are under the jurisdiction of various government organizations. Not only the national government but also other entities such as local governments, businesses, and private organizations are carrying out conservation activities.

To efficiently carry out the various activities based on the CBD in Japan, it is necessary for the governmental organizations to cooperate in promoting measures in a comprehensive and systematic manner. It is also important for the national government, as well as local governments, businesses, and citizens to join forces in a consensus to preserve biological diversity and to ensure the sustainable use of its components.

To this end, it is indispensable for the Japanese government to clarify its basic policy for the conservation of biological diversity and the basic directions for developing measures for the respective fields. The Japanese government has developed the National Strategy in accordance with Article 6 of the CBD. Based on which, the Japanese government encouraged the promotion of related measures and cooperation between relevant ministries and agencies in order to raise the public's awareness of biological diversity, and to encourage entities such as local governments, businesses, and private organizations to carry out conservation activities.

3.3.2 Characteristics and Target of the National Strategy

The National Strategy was made by systematically coordinating various related measures for the conservation of biological diversity and the sustainable use of its components based on the CBD. It also shows Japan's basic policy for handling the issue and the basic direction for developing future measures in the respective fields. It constitutes the basic framework of policy for comprehensively and systematically implement activities based on the CBD under the cooperation of relevant ministries and agencies.

The National Strategy covers governmental measures relating to the conservation of biological diversity and the sustainable use of its components. In addition, it defines the direction for cooperation and support for respective entities such as local governments and private organizations in order to promote the activities of these entities.

3.3.3 Planning and Development of the National Strategy

The Inter-ministerial Coordinating Committee to the CBD was the main body responsible for the planning and development of the National Strategy.

The Committee commenced the drafting of the first text in February 1995. The draft was finalized at the end of July after the relevant ministries and agencies made the necessary adjustments. The draft was announced to the public and a public hearing was held. After reviewing the 230 opinions from the public, the draft was revised and the final draft was adopted by the Council of Ministers for Global Environment Conservation on 31 October 1995.


Ministry of the Environment Government of Japan

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