EXPERIENCE OF KITAKYUSHU CITY IN OVERCOMING POLLUTION


Kitakyushu City has been developed as a heavy and chemical industrial zone
specializing in such fields as iron and steel, chemicals, and ceramic industries.
However, the sudden economic growth and urbanization since the 1960's has caused
air, water and other pollution. To cope with these problems, Kitakyushu City
set up the regulations and program necessary for environmental conservation,
including pollution prevention.
Following is the report from Kitakyushu International Techno-Cooperative
Association About the history of environmental pollution control and
International Cooperation on pollution cooperation on pollution control

Overview of Kitakyushu

1-1 History of Environmental Pollution Control
Kitakyushu City is located on the
northern tip of Kyushu, one of four 
main islands in Japan, and on 
midwaybetween Tokyo and Shanghai.
The population of the City is about
one million and twenty thousand and
the city has been one of the four
majorindustrial zones that advanced
Japan's. economic development
Location of the City of Kitakyushu


Kitakyushu started its industrial development with the iron and steel industry
with rich coal deposits in the surrounding areas and being the hub of sea and
land transportation. In 1901, the government-run Yawata Steel Works was
established and the area soon became one of Japan's four major industrial zones.
Kitakyushu has supported Japan's modernization as a leading industrial zone
specializingin iron and steel, chemical, ceramic, and electrical industries since
the early 20thcentury. Economic growth, industrial progress and population
increase also resulted in pollution problems, and Kitakyushu was no exception.
Dokai Bay, located in northern
Kitakyushu and surrounded by
factories, was polluted with untreated
domestic and industrial wastewater
that contained harmful substances.
Fish and shellfish completely
disappeared by 1960 and the bay became
known as the "Sea of Death". In 1966
the dissolved oxygen in Dokai Bay was
recorded at 0 mg/l, and COD, Chemical
Oxygen Demand was 36 mg/l.
Polluted Dokai Bay (1960's)

However, owing to continued efforts by citizens, local businesses,
universities,and governmental organizations, the environment was improved
significantly.
Dokai Bay, the "Sea of Death",
experienced an impressive
improvement in water quality as a
result of restrictions on
industrial wastewater,development
of sewerage systems, and sludge
dredging jointly carried out by
businesses and government. More
than 100 species of marinelife
have been confirmed to return
to Dokai Bay.
  Recovered Dokai Bay (Present)


Also, Murasaki River, Communed by citizens as a symbol of Kitakyushu City, used
to be very polluted. Nowadays, ayu(sweetfish) and white gobies go up the river,
and fireflies fly in an upriver
district.
A significant reason for this is
that wastewater thatonce directly
discharged into Murasaki River has
now been purified by constructed
andwell-managed sewerage systems.
Thus, the sewerage systems have
played significant role of keeping
river and sea water clean and
preserving natural environment.
Water Quality in murasaki River
and the Percentage of Sewered population
Based on these experiences about overcoming pollution, Kitakyushu city has been
conducting international environmental cooperation with accumulated experience and
technology.
1-2 International Cooperation on Pollution Control
In order to share the industrial and environmental technology of Kitakyushu with
foreign countries, KITA, Kitakyushu International Techno-cooperative Association,
was established in 1980 with funds from the Kitakyushu City government and local
businesses. Since then KITA has been engaged in technical cooperation activities
including a major focus on environmental problems for developing countries.
KITA, a legitimate operating institution for training, designs, curriculums
publishes textbooks, and coordinates training courses based on requests from
JICA and the City of Kitakyushu.
KITA manages following 5 JICA training courses on the environment.
Industrial Pollution Control Engineering Course from 1986
Industrial Wastewater Treatment Technique Course from 1988
Domestic Wastewater Treatment Technique Course from 1990
Air Pollution Source Monitoring Practice Course from 1990
Waste Management Practice Course from 1990

As for Domestic Wastewater Treatment Technique Course started from 1990, the
totalnumber of participants is 121 from 40 countries.


Kitakyushu, as one of Japan's four major industrial zones, contributed to the
nation's industrial development and once suffered from serious environmental
pollution problems. However, the citizens, corporations,research institutions,
and the local government worked together to solve the problem.
As a result, blue skies and beautiful water environment was recovered.
In overcoming environmental pollution, we have accumulated numerous
experiences and technology. The experience of Kitakyushu is the experience of
Japan though the severity of pollution and its situation is different in each
municipality, and we have a responsibility to sharethis experience with the
international society. We would like to play an important role in international
environmental cooperation and build partnerships between us, protecting our
beautiful environment for people,the earth, and the next generation.