Environment Timeline

English | Japanese

  • 1878-1912: Environmental pollution first becomes a concern with the modernization and industrialization associated with the Meiji period
  • 1956: Drainage from chemical factory causes methyl mercury poisoning, or Minamata Disease
  • 1967: Basic Law on Environmental Pollution Control
  • 1971: Environment Agency established
  • 1972: Nature Conservation Law passed
  • 1992: Rio Summit- UN conference on environment and development
  • 1993: Basic Environment Law enacted. Goal: assure good environment for future generations
  • 1997: Kyoto Protocol- international environmental protection agreement made by UN
  • 2001: Environment Agency is promoted to Ministry of the Environment- has more governmental influence
  • Present: Current major issues include- global warming, preservation of the ozone layer, water and soil, waste management and recycling, conservation of the natural environment, and participation in international cooperation