Law Concerning the Promotion of the Measures to Cope

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                                                                                                   Law for Measures to Cope
                                                                                                    with Global Warming     1
                                                                                                   Environment Minister
                                                                                                    Manabe at COP4               1
                                                                                                   Environment Minister
                                                                                                    Manabe to China              2
                                                                                                   Informal Ministerial
                                                                                                     Meeting on Climate
 News from the                                                                                       Change                      2
                                                                                                   Joint Announcement

 Environment Agency                                                                                  on Japan-China
                                                                                                     Environmental
                                                                                                     Cooperation toward the
                                                                                                     21st Century           3
Vol. 3 No. 4 December 1998                                                                         Acid Deposition
                                                                                                    Monitoring Network in
                                                                                                    East Asia (EANET)            3

Law Concerning the Promotion of the Measures to                                                    New Noise Standards
                                                                                                   OECD Conference on
                                                                                                                                 4



Cope with Global Warming
                                                                                                    PRTRs                        5
                                                                                                   Revised Effluent Standards 5
                                                                                                   ECO ASIA ’98                  6
   On 9 October the Government of Japan promulgated the world’s first law created for the          APEC Environmental
express purpose of preventing global warming. The Bill for the Promotion of Measures to             Sympo                        7
Prevent Global Warming passed at the national Diet on 2 October. The law is in response to         Accession to Desertification
                                                                                                    Convention                  8
the COP3 meeting last year for the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate
                                                                                                   World Environment Day
Change in Kyoto, and prescribes actions of the national and local governments, industry and         1999 in Japan                8
citizens. The actual implementation of the Law will begin in about six months, but the             Events                        8
Environment Agency is now preparing a Basic Policy on measures to tackle global warming.
The June issue of JEQ covered the contents of the Bill.



Environment Minister Manabe at COP4, Buenos Aires
   Minister of State and Director-General of the Environment Agency Mr. Kenji Manabe
attended the Fourth Session of the Conference of the Parties to the UN Framework
Convention on Climate Change (COP4), held in Buenos Aires from 2 – 14 November. At the             New Symbol for Global
Conference he emphasized the need for countries to take action to reduce greenhouse gas            Warming Prevention
emissions domestically, and the need to reach agreement on key issues in order to put into
force the Kyoto Protocol negotiated last December at COP3, which was hosted by Japan.
Discussions at COP4 this year covered details of three mechanisms (namely emissions
trading, joint implementation and the clean development mechanism) the issue of developing
country participation in efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and various matters
                                                                        relating to the
                                                                        Climate Convention.
                                                                        COP4 resulted in the
                                                                        Buenos Aires Plan of       After considering 7,618 entries,
                                                                                                   a committee selected this design
                                                                        Action which sets          submitted by Matsuoka Hideo
                                                                        forth a timetable for      of Yamagata Prefecture to be
                                                                        achievement of             used each December during
                                                                                                   Global Warming Prevention
                                                                        concrete results on        Month. The symbol will be
                                                                        various issues by          commonly used by national
                                                                                                   and local governments and
                                                                        COP6 in the year           industry to raise awareness
                                                                        2000.                      about global warming.



                                                                       Mr. Manabe addresses COP4
                                                                       participants


                                                       1
Environment Minister Manabe to China
   Environment Minister Manabe visited China from
22 to 26 October to exchange views with his
Chinese counterpart, Mr. Xie Zhenhua, Director of
the State Administration of Environmental
Protection, on environmental issues, in particular
about global warming and bilateral cooperation in
the environmental field. Mr. Manabe also met with
Vice Premier Wen Jiabao of the State Council and
Minister Tang Jiaxuan of the Ministry of Foreign
Affairs. Mr. Manabe visited the Japan-China
Friendship Environmental Protection Center in
Beijing, and Dalian, one of three “model
environmental cities” involved in an initiative of
Japanese Official Development Assistance (ODA),
based on the joint declaration for “Japan-China
Environmental Cooperation for the 21st Century”
                                                           Mr. Manabe with Mr. Tang Jiaxuan, Chinese Minister of Foreign Affairs
stated by the former Prime Minister Hashimoto              in Beijing
when he visted China in September 1997.




Informal Ministerial Meeting on Climate Change
   An Informal Ministerial            to achieve success at COP4.                 implementation, many speakers
Meeting on Climate Change was         Discussions were in three parts:            pointed out the need for a reliable
held on 17 and 18 September in        individual country domestic efforts         and transparent system; thus
Tokyo. The meeting was attended       and international cooperation;              monitoring and verification are
by representatives of 22 developing   mechanisms; and prospects for               important. All agreed that
and developed countries and           COP4. About the first topic, each           discussion should continue, and
economies in transition, and one      country explained its efforts, with         confirmed that the prevention of
organization.                         many referring to more efficient            global warming is the goal of the
   The aims of the meeting were to    use of energy. Developing country           Climate Convention.
maintain momentum in discussions      participants explained their efforts           About international
about measures to tackle global       and emphasized their differing              cooperation, the meeting expressed
warming, to discuss issues relating   stages of development. There was            the need for strong leadership at
to the entry into force of the        recognition that countries at               COP4 and during the subsequent
Kyoto Protocol to the UN              different levels of development             process, and for open discussion
Framework Convention on               should have different targets to            since the positions of many
Climate Change (UNFCCC), and          reduce greenhouse gas (GHG)                 countries differ. A number of
to confirm political commitment to    emissions.                                  countries expressed the view that
promote discussions leading up to        There was consensus that the             the private sector (businesses and
COP4 and thereafter.                  clean development mechanism                 NGOs) should be more involved,
   While recent subsidiary            should provide ‘win-win’ options            and that some way should be
meetings on the UNFCCC in Bonn        for countries involved. Involving           found to get more of their
had not provided substantive          project-based reductions of GHGs,           involvement at COP4 and in the
discussions, the Informal             for developed countries the clean           future.
Ministerial Meeting sought to         development mechanism will help                In all, participants in the
avoid formality and focus             meet goals of GHG reductions,               Informal Ministerial Meeting felt
discussions on issues of substance.   while for developing countries it           that it had been a success in that
At the Informal Ministerial           can promote the needed technical            views were exchanged frankly, and
Meeting there was consensus that      and financial transfers and give            that there was general convergence
each country involved would try       them emissions credits. Regarding           of opinion in how countries should
their own share of work in order      emissions trading and                       go forward towards COP4.

                                                       2
Japan-China Joint Announcement on Environmental
Cooperation toward the 21st Century
   On 26 November in Tokyo Prime Minister Obuchi               toward the 21st Century” gives recognition to the
and President Jiang Zemin had a discussion about               achievements made so far, and strongly supports
environmental cooperation between two countries                further efforts in pursuant to the objectives and
during their summit talks. It is an indication of the          principles of sustainable development agreed to at the
importance both leaders place on the topic. The                Earth Summit in 1992. It recognizes the benefits for
announcement made during the talks of Chinese                  both countries of cooperation in environmental areas.
participation in the preparatory-phase activities of              Mr. Xie Zhenhua, Director of Chinese State
the Acid Deposition Monitoring Network in East                 Administration of Environmental Protection, who
Asia represented significant and welcome progress.             accompanied President Jiang, met with Minister
   On the same day, Japanese and Chinese Foreign               Manabe of the Environment Agency during the
Ministers issued a joint announcement which                    official visit of the President. They exchanged their
strengthens environmental cooperation between the              views about environmental cooperation and
two countries. The “Japan-China Joint                          reaffirmed their commitment to strive for coopera-
Announcement on Environmental Cooperation                      tion to obtain the best results.

  Main elements of the Japan-China Joint
  Announcement on Environmental Cooperation
  toward the 21st Century
  • cooperation on development for three “environ-
    mental model cities” in China, i.e. Dalian, Gulyang,
    and Chongquing, including antipollution measures
  • establishment of “environmental information
    network” at the city level in 100 locations
  • confirmation of support for the Japan-China
    Environmental Protection Joint Committee
  • support for the Japan-China Forum on
    Environmental Cooperation
  • Chinese involvement in the Acid Deposition
    Monitoring Network in East Asia and cooperation
    to improve the environment in the region
  • cooperation for early entry into force of the Kyoto        Mr. Xie Zhenhua, Director of China’s State Administration of Environmental
    Protocol, and cooperation including implementa-            Protection, listens to explanation of a low emissions vehicle at the Prime
    tion of relevant projects                                  Ministers Residence in Tokyo. At center is Cabinet Secretary Nonaka, at
                                                               right is Mr. Manabe, Director-General of the Environment Agency.




Acid Deposition Monitoring Network in East Asia (EANET)
   The First Inter-Governmental           National Center.                             procedures and formats, and
Meeting of the Acid Deposition               Two meetings held in                      training of personnel.
Monitoring Network in East Asia           Yokohama recently promoted the                  The Working Group reviewed
(EANET) was held in March this            further development of EANET.                the status of the preparatory-phase
year toward the establishment of          The First Meeting of the Interim             activities since its inauguration in
EANET of which the objectives             Scientific Advisory Group for the            April this year and discussed the
are to create a common                    Preparatory-Phase Activities of              future activities. Countries
understanding of the state of acid        EANET (ISAG) was held from 12                participating in EANET at present
deposition in East Asia and to            to 14 October, followed by the               include Indonesia, Japan, the
provide useful inputs to decision-        Third Meeting of the Working                 Republic of Korea, Malaysia,
making aimed at preventing                Group on the EANET, from 15 to               Mongolia, the Philippines, the
adverse impacts of acid deposition.       16 October.                                  Russian Federation, Thailand and
EANET is now conducting the                  The ISAG discussed various                Vietnam. China also decided to
preparatory-phase activities. An          technical issues, including                  participate in the preparatory-
Interim Network Center was                preparation of technical manuals,            phase activities of EANET in
established in Niigata, Japan, and        quality assurance/quality control            November 1998.
each participating country has a          programs, data reporting

                                                           3
New Environmental Quality Standards for Noise
   Japan set environmental quality         advantageous since they            (4) Period of adjustment to the
standards for noise in 1971 by             accurately reflect the level of        new environmental quality
Cabinet decision. Since then, more         exposure to noise and are              standards during which they
research has been done on the              suitable for environmental             are to be gradually met. This
effects of noise, noise measurement        assessments along roadways,            will be basically within ten
technology has advanced, and in            for example, where traffic data        years of the date the standards
recent years Equivalent Noise              can be used to establish clear         go into effect, but as soon as
Levels (ENLs) have been adopted            methods to evaluate noise              possible after ten years in the
internationally to standardize             levels.                                case of areas that have
evaluation methodologies.                                                         difficulty meeting them, such as
Responding to these circum-             (2) New principles for evaluation.        near major traffic arteries.
stances, the Environment Agency             There are two forms: One is
proposed revisions in environ-              evaluation based on noise level   (5) The new environmental quality
mental quality standards based on           by which each single house is         standards will go into effect on
new methods. The revisions were             affected. The noise level is          April 1, 1999.
announced on September 30 in                measured at the most affected
Environment Agency Notification             side of the building. The other      The Environment Agency will
64, based on Article 16 of the              is the evaluation in terms of     request all involved ministries and
Environment Basic Law.                      number and rate of houses         agencies to promote measures to
                                            affected by noise levels that     help meet the new environmental
The gist of the Notification is:            exceed environmental quality      quality standards. It will also join
(1) Adoption of ENLs as a method            standards in a given area.        forces with the involved ministries
    of evaluating noise. This                                                 and agencies to promote com-
    replaces the old standard based     (3) The new standards themselves,     prehensive measures against noise,
    on a central value. An ENL              which are graded for different    including improving the institu-
    expresses the average energy            types of districts and time       tional arrangements aimed at
    level of noise data in equivalent       zones. (See table below.)         reaching the new standards.
    decibels. ENLs are


ENVIRONMENTAL QUALITY STANDARDS FOR NOISE (unit: decibels)
(i) Areas not facing roads of two lanes or more
                                                                                      Nighttime Maximum
                  Zone                           Daytime Maximum
                                                                                       (10 p.m. to 6 a.m.)
 AA (in the vicinity of medical care
 facilities, etc., requiring quiet                      ≤ 50                                  ≤ 40
 conditions)
 A (entirely residential) or
 B (mostly residential)                                 ≤ 55                                  ≤ 45
 C (mixed business and residential)                     ≤ 60                                  ≤ 50

(ii) Areas facing roads of two lanes or more.
                                                                                      Nighttime Maximum
                  Zone                           Daytime Maximum
                                                                                       (10 p.m. to 6 a.m.)
                    A                                   ≤ 60                                  ≤ 55
                 B or C                                 ≤ 65                                  ≤ 60

(iii) Areas adjacent to artery roads
                                                                                      Nighttime Maximum
                  Zone                           Daytime Maximum
                                                                                       (10 p.m. to 6 a.m.)
 Outside ENL of houses exposed to
 high levels of traffic noise                           ≤ 70                                  ≤ 65




                                                         4
OECD Conference on PRTRs
    Pollutant Release and Transfer     Environment Agency in coopera-         Environment Agency starting last
Registers (PRTRs) are frameworks       tion with UNEP Chemicals and           year.
for the register and public release    United Nations Institute for              Next the meeting actively
of information about emissions         Training and Research (UNITAR).        discussed in twelve working
and transfer as waste of chemical         The Conference was attended         groups the experiences of countries
substances thought to be               by 80 experts responsible for          with PRTRs, their evaluation as
environmental pollutants. They         PRTRs from overseas and 65 from        methodologies for environmental
allow information to be shared         Japan, representing a total of 38      policy, and their future directions.
among various sectors such as          countries (including OECD              In the discussions, the importance
governments, businesses and            member and non-member                  of PRTRs as a tool for environ-
citizens/NGOs. PRTRs are a             countries), regions and                mental protection was confirmed,
significant new methodology to         international organizations as well    and it was recognized that PRTR
promote measures to counter            observers from the public, for a       systems are also important tools
environmental risks of potentially     total of over 200. The feature of      for sustainable development. In
harmful chemical substances.           this meeting was that it included      addition, the importance was
    The Organization for Economic      not only governmental                  pointed out that citizens and
Co-operation and Development           representatives but also persons       NGOs are able to have access to
(OECD) actively took initiative        from industry and NGOs, and            information through PRTRs, and
based on Chapter 19 of Agenda 21       many attended from Japan.              that they are able to participate in
which was agreed at the Earth             Mr. Hirohisa Kurihara, State        risk management at the
Summit in 1992, leading to a           Secretary for Environmental            community level, and in
Council Recommendation agreed          Affairs, Environment Agency, gave      environmental policy. Developing
at the OECD Environment                the welcome address, Ms. Joke          countries expressed their
Ministers meeting in February          Waller-Hunter, Director of the         expectations for assistance in the
1992 that member countries take        OECD Environment Directorate,          establishment of PRTRs.
steps to establish PRTR systems.       gave the opening address, and Dr.         On the last day, the discussions
The OECD, while evaluating             Nay Htun, Assistant Administrator      were summarized, and a
results achieved so far, decided       and Regional Director of the           declaration was adopted calling for
that the first international meeting   United Nations Development             strengthening of efforts on PRTRs
on PRTRs would be held in order        Programme (UNDP) gave the              by countries and international
to consider future directions for      keynote speech. Following this,        organizations.
PRTRs. Accordingly, the OECD           presentations were made at the            Through the Conference, it
International Conference on            plenary session about initiatives in   was felt that recognition of the
PRTRs was held in Tokyo over           the Netherlands, U.S., Australia       multi-faceted functions of PRTRs
three days, from 9 to 11               and UNITAR, and Japan reported         and their importance for
September, organized by the            on the PRTR pilot project which        environmental policy is growing
OECD and hosted by the                 was implemented by the                 internationally.




Revised Effluent Standards
   In order to promote counter-        number of industries to continue       period of five years until 30
measures for eutrophication            with provisional standards for 5       September 1998, during which the
caused by excessive release of         more years.                            provisional standards applied.
nutrients (nitrogen and phospho-          In October 1993, the Director-      Japan’s effluent standards for
rus) into enclosed coastal waters,     General of the Environment             specified establishments with
an existing Ordinance of the Prime     Agency designated 88 coastal           average discharges of 50 m3 or
Minister’s Office was reviewed and     waters to which the rules on           more of effluent are a maximum of
revised. The new regulations           discharge of nitrogen and                      r
                                                                              120 mg/ and daily average of 60
strengthen the provisional             phosphorus would apply.                   r                          r
                                                                              mg/ for nitrogen and 16 mg/ and
standards and put them into effect     Industries that had trouble meeting         r
                                                                              8 mg/ , respectively, for
generally, but permit a very limited   these standards were given a grace     phosphorus.

                                                        5
ECO ASIA ’98 Ministerial Congress in Sendai
   The Seventh Environment               promotion of technology transfer        TOWARDS THE SUCCESS OF
Congress for Asia and the Pacific        is important to further                 “RIO + 10” ASSEMBLY IN 2002
(ECO ASIA ’98) was held this year        strengthening actions needed.              In the discussion it was
in Sendai, Japan from 19 to 20                                                   recognized that positive steps were
September 1998. It was hosted by         CLIMATE CHANGE – STRENGTHENING          being made in the implementation
the Environment Agency of Japan          THE EFFORTS AND COOPERATION TO          of Agenda 21, including the
and Sendai City and attended by          COPE WITH CLIMATE CHANGE IN             preparation of national Agenda 21
49 representatives including 11          ASIA-PACIFIC REGION                     Action Plans by countries in the
Ministers and 6 Vice-Ministers              Discussions pointed out that, in     Asia-Pacific region. In addition,
from 21 countries in the Asia-           order to address the climate            however, participants from devel-
Pacific region, and 16 represen-         change issue in the Asia-Pacific        oping countries expressed views
tatives from 10 international            region, there are several problems      that overall efforts worldwide were
organizations. Topics of the four        to be emphasized, including             inadequate in fulfilling commit-
main sessions this year are              (a) insufficient human resources        ments by the developed countries
described below.                         for the preparation and implemen-       made at the Rio Summit. Conse-
                                         tation of policies; (b) shortage of     quently, participants expressed
REVIEW OF THE PROGRESS IN THE            funds to implement those policies;      keen interest in utilizing this ECO
PAST YEAR ON ECO ASIA PROJECTS           and, (c) needs for better access to     ASIA forum to further implement
AND OTHER INITIATIVES                    and utilization of information on       the commitments adopted at the
   Reports were given on “ECO            climate change. Regarding the           Rio Summit and to advance a
ASIA Long-term Perspective               implementation of policies to cope      positive Asia-Pacific approach in
Project” and “Environmental              with global warming, views were         coping with global environmental
Information Network for Asia and         expressed that (a) various measures     problems. In this context, for the
the Pacific (ECO-ASIA NET)”, as          are already being implemented in        purposes of realizing a successful
well as the “Institute for Global        developing countries in the region;     Rio + 10 Assembly, views were
Environmental Strategies (IGES)”         (b) it is very important that these     expressed that progress in ratifying
and “Acid Deposition Monitoring          significant voluntary actions by        the Kyoto Protocol is essential.
Network in East Asia (EANET)”.           developing countries be better             Regarding the role of ECO
                                         known, especially in developed          ASIA leading up to the “Rio + 10”
CLIMATE CHANGE – TOWARDS THE             countries; (c) prioritization is very   Assembly, a suggestion was made
SUCCESS OF COP4                          important in developing the             to seek linkages between ECO
   After presentations, participants     policies, in order to utilize limited   ASIA and the Fourth Ministerial
pointed out that (a) there are many      resources efficiently; (d) various      Conference on Environment and
unclear aspects about the three          efforts to mitigate climate change,     Development in Asia and the
mechanisms established by the            particularly in the energy sector       Pacific planned for the year 2000
Kyoto Protocol, namely                   may have significant positive           by ESCAP. In addition, views were
international emission trading,          values for economies, and there-        expressed that ECO ASIA is
projects under Article 6 and the         fore such aspects as “win-win”          expected to make a significant
clean development mechanism,             approaches should be well taken         contribution through linkages with
and that it is important to promote      into consideration in developing        other activities in the region both
international discussion about           policies for climate change; and,       in making significant progress in
these three mechanisms in parallel,      (e) greenhouse gas emission             regional implementation of the Rio
and (b) the Informal Ministerial         reductions need to be addressed         commitments as well as in
Meeting on Climate Change held           within an integrated framework of       preparing for the “Rio + 10”
in Tokyo was seen as extremely           sustainable development.                Assembly. It was also suggested
beneficial to facilitate international      Relating to international            that ECO ASIA should identify the
negotiations, enabling significant       cooperation to tackle global            areas of slow or no progress from
progress at COP4. In this con-           warming, participants emphasized        the point of view of a successful
nection, the view was expressed          the importance of cooperation in        “Rio + 10” Assembly in the year
that ministers should demonstrate        further promoting capacity              2002, and that some mechanisms
political leadership in order to         building and technology transfer. It    should be evolved to follow up
make COP4 a success. In addition,        was agreed that at this stage action    with the members and monitor in
it was pointed out that the              is needed rather than discussion.       close linkage with ESCAP.

                                                           6
APEC Environmental Symposium on Environmental Education
Towards Sustainable Cities
    The APEC Environmental              in the Asia-Pacific region at            environmental education for
Symposium on Environmental              meetings of APEC environment             realizing sustainable cities;
Education Towards Sustainable           ministers in 1994, 1996 and 1997.        (2) discuss issues and measures to
Cities was held in Sendai, Japan           Almost half of the world’s            promote environmental education;
from 20 to 21 September 1998. It        population now lives in urban            and (3) clarify the way forward in
was attended by experts from 12         areas, as a result of the rapid          the process towards sustainable
APEC member countries and 7             urbanization on a global scale in        cities. The primary focus was on
organizations. Keynote speakers         past years. Cities have become           the environmental aspects of
included Honorable John A.              highly developed artificial areas,       sustainable cities, in particular
Frazer, Ambassador for the              consuming enormous amounts of            ‘sound material cycles’ and the
Environment, Canada, Prof. Dr.          resources and energy, and place          ‘living environment’.
Kimiko Kozawa, Professor, Tokyo         heavy burdens on the environment.            The Symposium resulted in a
Gakugei University, and Mr.             Many serious environmental issues        better understanding of issues
Guangyao Zhu, Vice Minister of          are closely related to urban             relating to environmental
the State Environmental Protection      consumption. In the Asia-Pacific         education and sustainable cities,
Administration of China.                region, home to a number of              and created new links between
    The theme of “sustainable           mega-cities, urban environmental         concerned officials and
cities” has been an important one       problems must be dealt with in           specialists in the Asia-Pacific
in the Asia-Pacific Economic            order to promote sustainable             region. The general outcomes of
Cooperation forum (APEC), being         development on a regional scale.         the APEC meeting are shown in
discussed as a priority area to            This Symposium aimed to               the box.
promote sustainable development         (1) recognize the role of


     Through the APEC Symposium discussions, participants shared a understanding of the necessity of a
  paradigm shift in environmental educational activities, not only for children but also for various sectors of
  society, such as decision makers and professionals in every field. The main elements of the discussion are
  summarized below.
  a) Make environmental education a lifelong process
     Mechanisms are needed through which all citizens can participate in education continuously throughout their
     lives. Partnership is needed among all stakeholders including citizens, governments, NGOs and businesses.
  b) Make the invisible visible
     The fact that many aspects of cities are not visible to the eye, such as energy, material flows and
     unsustainable consumption patterns, is a barrier to environmental awareness. These need to be made visible.
     It is important to provide comprehensive educational opportunities to raise interest in environmental issues,
     to deepen understanding and to be able to solve problems.
  c) Share common and innovative approaches
     To attain higher effectiveness in environmental education, common and innovative approaches, with
     flexibility for regional differences, should be pursued through exchanges of experiences and information.
     In this context, introduction of practical and action-oriented environmental education should encourage self-
     learning and self-training attitudes, and community-based activities. In formulation of the environmental
     curriculum, positive aspects of environmental improvements of our planet should be stressed, not just the
     negative aspects of environmental problems.
  d) Seek formal and informal learning opportunities
     It is important to incorporate environmental elements at every opportunity in formal and informal education
     (i.e. learning opportunities in everyday life), with close linkage between them and to integrate environmental
     education into every aspect of formal school curriculums. In this way, environmental education can be
     carried out in an integrated way.
  e) Continue/strengthen international cooperation
     Although environmental issues differ among countries and regions, many topics and experiences can be
     shared, such as in capacity building, preparation of teaching materials and approaches by incorporating
     concepts of ecological foot-print and sustainable development into them. In this context, it is essential to
     continue and strengthen international cooperation in environmental education including information
     networking.


                                                           7
Accession to UN Convention to Combat                                                                        E V E N T S




Desertification                                                                                   December 1998
                                                                                                  11-13       International
   On September 11, 1998, the Japanese Cabinet meeting decided to accede to the United                        Symposium on
Nations Convention to Combat Desertification in Countries Experiencing Serious Drought                        Endocrine
                                                                                                              Disrupting
and/or Desertification, Particularly in Africa, and deposited the instrument of accession                     Chemicals
with the United Nations Secretary-General. On December 10, 90 days after the date of                          (Kyoto, Japan)
deposition of this instrument, the Convention will enter into force for Japan.                    14-18       20th Consultative
                                                                                                              Meeting of the
   The Convention stipulates drafting and implementation of action programmes by                              Contracting
affected developing countries to identify the factors contributing to desertification and                     Parties to the
practical measures necessary to combat desertification and mitigate the effects of drought.                   Convention on
                                                                                                              the Prevention of
It also stipulates provision of aid by developed countries and international financial                        Marine Pollution
institutions. Inter-governmental negotiations for the Convention started after the Earth                      by Dumping of
                                                                                                              Wastes and Other
Summit in 1992 based on Agenda 21. As of the end of August 1998, 136 countries were                           Matter (London,
Parties to the Convention.                                                                                    UK)
   In addition to providing monetary aid and assistance in formulating and executing              January 1999
plans to reduce the effects of severe droughts and combat desertification in developing           25-29       2nd Session of the
countries, Japan will also be responsible for transferring appropriate technology.                            Intergovernmental
                                                                                                              Negotiating
                                                                                                              Committee for
                                                                                                              An International
                                                                                                              Legally Binding
                                                                                                              Instrument for
                                                                                                              Implementing

Japan to Hold World Environment Day Celebration                                                               International
                                                                                                              Action on Certain
                                                                                                              Persistent Organic
in 1999                                                                                                       Pollutants
                                                                                                              (Nairobi, Kenya)

   The Environment Agency and Ministry of Foreign Affairs have agreed with the United             February
Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP) that the main international World                          2-4         4th Scientific
                                                                                                              Planning Group
Environment Day celebrations will be held in Tokyo on 5 June 1999. World Environment                          Meeting of the
Day was established by the United Nations General Assembly in 1972 to commemorate                             Asia-Pacific
                                                                                                              Network for
the opening of the United Nations Conference on Human Environment. By holding                                 Global Change
annual celebrations and other related activities on and around June 5, UNEP aims to raise                     Research (APN)
                                                                                                              (Jakarta,
environmental awareness, and to encourage global action in the protection of the                              Indonesia)
environment. On the occasion of World Environment Day in 1999, the Global 500                     14 – 21     6th Meeting of
Awards will be presented by UNEP and a symposium will be held. Related events will be                         the Open-ended
                                                                                                              Ad Hoc Working
held by governments, businesses and non-governmental organizations.                                           Group on
                                                                                                              Biosafety
                                                                                                              (Cartagena,
                                                                                                              Colombia)
                                                                                                  22 – 23     Extraordinary
                                                                                                              Meeting of the
                                                                                                              Conference of the
                                                                                                              Parties to the
                                                                                                              Convention on
                                                                                                              Biological
                                                                                                              Diversity
                                                                                                              (Cartagena,
  For more information about events and articles in JEQ please contact the Global                             Colombia)
Environment Department.
                                                                                                  March
                                                                                                  TBA         4th Inter-
                                                          Japan                                               Governmental
                                                  ENVIRONMENT                                                 Meeting of the
                                                       Quarterly                                              Asia-Pacific
                                                                                                              Network for
                             Published by the Global Environment Department, Environment Agency               Global Change
                                    1-2-2 Kasumigaseki, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 100-8975 Japan                      Research (APN)
                                                Tel: +81-3-5521-8244                                          (Japan)
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                                             Homepage: http://www.eic.or.jp                       TBA = To Be Announced

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