Kitakyushu – The World Capital of Sustainability

World Capital of Sustainability

Japan achieved significant economic growth and development in the 1960s. More important was Kitakyushu World Capital which became one of the largest industrial zones in the history of Japan.

The only challenge that faced the capital was air and water pollution. For instance, Dokai Bay was suffering from both domestic and industrial water pollution.

The pollution worsened with time and reached the point where Dokai Bay was labeled as the “Sea of Death.” However, research institutes, enterprises, residents and governmental agencies combined their effort in a move to curb the issue.

The city of Kitakyushu established the Environmental Pollution Control Bureau (EPCB) which today, is commonly known as the Environmental Bureau. This had taken place before the government formed the Environmental Agency.

Dokai Bay - Water Pollution

Later, Kitakyushu formed what is known as “The City of Kitakyushu Pollution Control Ordinance,” an organization that was more strict and thorough than ever before in the implementation of their policies.

CKPCO was more stringent than the national laws in matters of pollution. In addition to laying other strategies, the City of Kitakyushu enforced a number of measures that proved effective in curbing pollution caused by major companies in the city. This also included execution of some agreements with the aim of preventing pollution.

Another bold step was driving forward the Large-Scale Urban Greening Movement in line with the “Green Kitakyushu Plan.”

Surprisingly, the above measures in combination with residents’ efforts to protect the environment yielded surprising results. Overall, Kitakyushu environment improved significantly.

After achieving the transformation of a “Gray City to a Green City,” the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) set forth a perfect example for the whole world.

Changing The World Environment Through The Use Of Preservation Technologies

The City of Kitakyushu has managed to improve the environment by using several approaches.

It utilizes the following to control pollution:

  • Past Knowledge/experience gained in responding to past environmental contamination issues.
  • Energy efficiency improvement
  • City’s experience and technology in controlling pollution

More remarkable is the fact that Kitakyushu has accepted 4052 international trainees from 143 nations across the globe as from March 2005, not forgetting the dispatching of environmental specialists to other countries.

All these efforts geared towards improving the environment on an international level have received much appreciation from all over the world.

The following are some of the awards that the city of Kitakyushu has:

  • Global 500 Award from the United Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP) in the year 1990
  • “UN Local Government Honors,” received during the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development Earth Summit in Brazil

Another good mention was the contribution to the adoption of the “Dalian Environmental Demonstration Zone Plan in China (Kitakyushu City Friend) and Dalian City.

The DEDZP was part of ODA development goals. Because of this achievements, Dalian City was also honored to receive the “UNEP Global 500 Award in the year 2001.

Aim to Attain the “World Capital of Sustainable Development.”

Kitakyushu continues to be actively involved in offering technological support and educating developing countries on environmental matters by hosting international conferences on the same. For instance, in September 2000, Kitakyushu held the 4th Ministerial Conference on Environment and Development of United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and Pacific (MCED4/ESCAP).

During the MCED conference, the “Kitakyushu Initiative for a Clean Environment” was founded in 2001. Surprisingly, by the end of Jan 2006, 61 cities all from the Asia and Pacific Region had joined the initiative. These cities are now able to exchange information as they pursue various pilot projects.

Many stakeholders interested in improving Kitakyushu participated in the World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD), held in Johannesburg in 2002. NGO member, students, government officials and others attended the summit whose major goal was to advocate for the benefits of International Cooperation.

It was during this WSSD summit that the various stakeholders accepted and recognized the environmental improvements as key steps in preserving the environment of those regions.

Most importantly, it was at this summit that the “Kitakyushu Initiative” became recognized as the leading-edge initiative and was incorporated in the “Plan of Implementation.”

Kitakyushu Ecotown program – Fostering Environmental Industries

Global trends such as mass production, heavy consumption and mass disposal of waste have tremendously lead to the increase of waste, which is a global problem.

Based on this worldwide situation, Kitakyushu city has come up with a plan known as the “Kitakyushu Ecotown Plan” whose major objective is to advocate for environmental and Recycling Industries.

The national government also approved the plan in July 1997 whose aim was to reduce all waste material or achieve zero emission and push for resource recycling in the society.

Kitakyushu Ecotown Program

Kitakyushu Ecotown Program runs distinct environmental projects. For example, the program advocates for recycling of:

  • Automobiles
  • Plastic bottles
  • Electric appliances
  • Other recyclable wastes

The Kitakyushu Ecotown Plan has majorly focused its operations in Hibikinada Area located in the Northwestern Kitakyushu. Also, facilities in collaboration with enterprises and universities are conducting research and development programs on advanced waste disposal mechanisms and improved recycling technologies.

These organizations are located in Hibikinada giving Kitakyushu a boost in environmental matters. It is expected that their combined efforts will lead to the formation of environmental industries.

Additionally, various efforts are in use in the program. For example, the “Policy of Kitakyushu Industrial Eco Complex” aims  to achieve:

  • Proper recycling of resources and energy
  • Generation of new industries as a citywide goal

Kitakyushu can achieve all this through cooperation with other organizations, use of industrial infrastructure and the promotion of environmentally-conscious activities.

Understanding Aerial Photography

When you hear the term aerial photography,  the first things that hit your mind – You think of some guys flying with some device in the air as they take photographs. Well, in the real essence, there is more than meets the eye.

The scope of aerial photography is more than just using a helicopter, light aircraft or anything that can fly to take photographs.

Several photography elements need to be taken care of to constitute adequate data that can extrapolate whatever study is being carried out.

Unfortunately, most of these elements are often missed out on because of it is hard to understand them on the landscape on the ground. For instance, what may appear like an insignificant bump when viewed from the ground level may be very useful when used in a wider context.

The reason behind the invention of aerial photography was because it ‘s hard to map and study some landscapes while on foot. It is only through aerial photography that they can be accessed.

To this date, aerial photography has been put into use for over a century, especially in studying landscapes. It is through the same that researchers have been able to learn so much about the world.

Given that aerial photography has been coupled with the growing technology of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) that means its applications have gone to a whole new level.

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