Monday, April 29, 2013

Publication: The social and environmental implications of urbanization strategies and domestic land grabbing in China: the case of Chongming island by G. Siciliano (19 Apr 2013)

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The social and environmental implications of urbanization strategies and domestic land grabbing in China: the case of Chongming island by G. Siciliano

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Domestic land grabbing is defined as the process of land expropriation and displacement put in place by governments within their country borders to supposedly enhance development. While development-induced displacement occurs all over the world, China is responsible for a large fraction of such type of displacement and resettlement projects. Drawing on a case study from a rural island in east China, this paper analyses the impacts of displacement and resettlement projects in relation to: land tenure rights and compensation measures; rural workers’ livelihoods and the hukou registration system; and environmental degradation. Results reveal that landless people and rural areas in general are facing the risk of unemployment, food insecurity, the mismanagement of resettlements and environmental degradation. The paper argues that under such circumstances, it is very difficult to view the urbanisation strategy and resettlement policy of China as a good opportunity to improve development.

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Publication: A Citizens’ Guide to Energy Subsidies in Thailand (19 Apr 2013)

IISD Publications Centre

A Citizens’ Guide to Energy Subsidies in Thailand

» Tara Laan, IISD, 2013.Paper, 64 pages, copyright: IISD, ISBN 978-1-894784-63-4
Thailand has stabilized and subsidized energy prices for decades in an effort to shield consumers from volatile energy prices and improve access to energy. Despite significant reforms to deregulate parts of its fuels market, Thailand’s subsidies for fuel and electricity totalled at least THB 195 billion (US$6.8 billion) in 2012. Fuel and electricity subsidies are clearly benefiting some consumers, including the poor, who rely on subsidized liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) for cooking and free electricity. However, evidence shows that energy subsidies have unintended consequences for the economy, the environment and social equity. They strain public finances, encourage overconsumption, and benefit wealthier citizens far more than the poor.

Eliminating these subsidies poses considerable challenges. Energy access and affordability are critical factors for development. In addition, poor households, which typically spend a larger share of their income on energy, are highly vulnerable to spikes in fuel prices. Thailand is in the midst of facing these challenges as the government phases out several energy subsidies.

Citizens have a vital stake in this debate, but, as in many countries, there is all too often little solid information on the exact costs and benefits of subsidies. When information is available, it can be scattered across many sources and relate to different fuels, time periods or sectors of the economy. Citizens’ Guide to Energy Subsidies in Thailand, produced with the assistance of the Thailand Development Research Institute (TDRI), gathers the best available information on the costs and benefits of energy subsidies. The Guide is intended as a resource for civil society groups and journalists to use in their efforts to engage the public on energy subsidies and their reform.


Publication: Protecting carbon to destroy forests: land enclosures and REDD+ (19 Apr 2013)

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Protecting carbon to destroy forests: land enclosures and REDD+

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This paper argues that REDD+ will not stop forest destruction developing countries and the underlying causes of deforestation remain untouched. The paper suggests that because REDD+ is embedded in the logic that environmental destruction in one location can be ‘compensated’ in another, it acts to reinforce the underlying drivers of deforestation and climate change. It also gives forest destroyers a way to legitimise their actions as environmentally ‘friendly’ or ‘carbon neutral’. The paper continues that far from positioning itself as an ally to the many local groups that have preserved forested lands most strongly, REDD+ tends to silence debates about the unjust realities surrounding corporate pressures on land tenure regimes. The paper aims to provide a historical background and experiences on the ground in order to further the argument that because land and nature enclosures are central to its operation, REDD+ cannot be fixed.

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Publication: Comparative Analysis of Climate Change Vulnerability Assessments: Lessons from Tunisia and Indonesia (20 Apr 2013)

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Comparative Analysis of Climate Change Vulnerability Assessments: Lessons from Tunisia and Indonesia

» Anne HammillLivia BizikovaJulie Karami-DekensMatthew McCandless, GIZ, 2013.Paper, 40 pages, copyright: GIZ
Vulnerability assessments (VAs) are central to shaping climate change adaptation decisions. They help to define the nature and extent of the threat that may harm a given human or ecological system, providing a basis for devising measures that will minimize or avoid this harm. Yet the wide variety of VA approaches can be confusing for practitioners, creating uncertainty about the "right" way to assess vulnerability.

In an effort to provide some guidance on designing and conducting VAs, this paper reviews and compares VAs undertaken in Indonesia and Tunisia to distill key approaches, components and lessons. It begins with a general overview of definitions, approaches and challenges with conducting VAs, and then proposes a framework for analyzing and comparing them. The framework looks at four components of VAs: (1) Framing: where do we come from? (2) Process of conducting the VAs: how does it work? (3) Inputs: what is needed? (4) Outputs: what does it tell us?

The framework is then applied to analyze the assessments carried out in Tunisia and Indonesia, from their respective framings of vulnerability to the outputs of the process. The report then concludes with observations on differences and similarities between the VAs, as well as lessons learned that can inform the design and execution of future assessments.


UEBT: New Report Highlights Growing Biodiversity Awareness Worldwide (19 Apr 2013)

New Report Highlights Growing Biodiversity Awareness Worldwide

Paris/Montreal, 19 April 2013 - 75% of consumers surveyed worldwide are aware of biodiversity, while 48% can give a correct definition of the term biodiversity. These are some of the findings contained in the 2013 Biodiversity Barometer report launched today in Paris by the Union for Ethical BioTrade (UEBT). Consumers in Brazil, China and France, according to the study, show a particular awareness about biodiversity.

"The Biodiversity Barometer is an important source of information on global trends in biodiversity awareness. The results not only demonstrate a growing consciousness, they also show that respecting biodiversity provides tremendous opportunities for business around the world" said Braulio Ferreira de Souza Dias, Executive Secretary for the Convention on Biological Diversity.

Very high biodiversity awareness in China
This year's special focus on China reveals interesting results: Apart from a very high biodiversity awareness (94%), Chinese consumers surveyed also show high knowledge of biodiversity: 64% could define correctly what biodiversity means. "The survey results do not come as a surprise. In recent years, the government as well as civil society organizations in China has undertaken tremendous activities for communicating and raising awareness of biodiversity issues" says Zhang Wenguo, Ministry of Environmental Protection of the People's Republic of China.

Biodiversity offers branding opportunities
Responses to the question "What are the three brands you consider are making the most efforts to respect biodiversity?" were manifold and often country-specific: In Brazil, there is a clear leader with Natura (49%). In the USA, most mentioned food brands, including Kraft, Starbucks and Ben & Jerry's. UK has two leading companies: Bodyshop and CO-OP (23% and 20%). In France Yves Rocher, Nestle and Danone top the list, while in China the perceived leaders are Yili, Mengliu and Amway. "There are clear opportunities for brands to position themselves around the issue of biodiversity, and anticipate increasing consumer interest on this issue" concludes Rémy Oudghiri, Director of Trends and Insights at IPSOS.

Biodiversity reporting is growing, but still weak
"Today 32 of the top 100 beauty companies in the world refer to biodiversity in their corporate communications such as sustainability reporting and websites. This is considerably higher than in 2009, but much lower than what we found in the top 100 food companies" says Rik Kutsch Lojenga, Executive Director of UEBT. In 2013, 87% of consumers say they want to be better informed about how companies source their natural ingredients, and a large majority of consumers say they would to boycott brands that do not take good care of environmental or ethical trade practices in its sourcing and production processes.

Youth is the future of biodiversity
For brands interested in reaching consumers on biodiversity, the 2013 Biodiversity Barometer offers the following insights: Young people tend to have the highest awareness of biodiversity (80%), as well as more affluent and well-educated people. Traditional media remain by and large the key sources of awareness: 51% of all surveyed consumers learned about biodiversity through television, 33% through newspapers and magazines.

On the UEBT Biodiversity Barometer
The UEBT Barometer provides insights on evolving biodiversity awareness among consumers and how the beauty industry reports on biodiversity. It also illustrates the progress towards achieving the targets of the Strategic Plan of the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), and its results will be reflected in the next edition of the Global Biodiversity Outlook as a midway point analysis of the achievement of those targets. Since its first edition in 2009, the global research organisation IPSOS, on behalf of UEBT, has interviewed 31,000 consumers in 11 countries (Brazil, China, France, Germany, India, Japan, Peru, South Korea, Switzerland, UK and USA). In 2013, the biodiversity barometer survey was conducted among 6,000 consumers in six countries - Brazil, China, France, Germany, UK and USA.

The Union for Ethical BioTrade
The Union for Ethical BioTrade is a non-profit association that promotes the 'Sourcing with Respect' of ingredients that come from biodiversity. Members, which include many beauty companies, commit to gradually ensuring that their sourcing practices promote the conservation of biodiversity, respect traditional knowledge, and assure the equitable sharing of benefits all along the supply chain.
For more information, please visit:
Contact: Union for Ethical BioTrade
Tel: +31 20 223 4567,
For access to our press area (containing images, logos, and additional documents), please go to:
Username: UEBTpress
Password : R3sPeCt09

The Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD)

Opened for signature at the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro in 1992, and entering into force in December 1993, the Convention on Biological Diversity is an international treaty for the conservation of biodiversity, the sustainable use of the components of biodiversity and the equitable sharing of the benefits derived from the use of genetic resources. With 193 Parties, the Convention has near universal participation among countries. The Convention seeks to address all threats to biodiversity and ecosystem services, including threats from climate change, through scientific assessments, the development of tools, incentives and processes, the transfer of technologies and good practices and the full and active involvement of relevant stakeholders including indigenous and local communities, youth, NGOs, women and the business community. The Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety is a subsidiary agreement to the Convention. It seeks to protect biological diversity from the potential risks posed by living modified organisms resulting from modern biotechnology. To date, 163 countries plus the European Union have ratified the Cartagena Protocol. The Secretariat of the Convention and its Cartagena Protocol is located in Montreal. For more information visit:

For additional information, please contact: David Ainsworth on +1 514 287 7025 or at; or Johan Hedlund on +1 514 287 6670 or at

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Chinese Updates: UN to Support China to Phase out Ozone-Depleting Substances, with Major Climate Benefits (23 Apr 2013)

UN to Support China to Phase out Ozone-Depleting Substances, with Major Climate Benefits

23 April 2013 - The United Nations body that supports developing countries to phase out substances that damage the ozone layer will provide China with up to US$380 million in funding to eliminate industrial production of the ozone-depleting substances HCFCs (or hydrochlorofluorocarbons) by the year 2030, it was announced today.

China - the world's largest producer and consumer of HCFCs - is set to retire its current HCFC production capacity, as well as surplus production capacity that is currently not utilized, as part of the agreement with the Multilateral Fund for the Implementation of the Montreal Protocol.

The Chinese government says the total amount of HCFCs to be eliminated by 2030 will prevent the emission of over 4.3 million metric tonnes of HCFCs (equal to 300,000 tonnes in terms of its ozone depletion potential), and 8 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent greenhouse gas emissions.

HCFCs are widely used in the refrigeration, foam, solvent, aerosol and fire fighting sectors as a replacement for ozone-depleting CFCs (chlorofluorocarbons), which were successfully phased out worldwide under the Montreal Protocol in 2010.

Although having considerably lower ozone depleting potential than CFCs, many HCFCs have high global warming potentials, of up to 2000 times that of carbon dioxide.

HCFCs are among the last remaining substances controlled by the Montreal Protocol; one of the most widely ratified treaties in United Nations history.

The Protocol has enabled reductions of over 98 per cent of all global production and consumption of controlled ozone-depleting substances, thus supporting the restoration of the ozone layer which protects life on Earth from harmful wavelengths of ultraviolet light.

China accounts for 92 per cent of the total HCFC production in developing countries. The phase-out of HCFC production in China is thus fundamental to ensure the compliance of all developing countries with the Montreal Protocol.

Under the new arrangement, China will close and dismantle production of HCFCs for uses controlled under the Montreal Protocol. The country has agreed to ensure that any HCFC plants that will receive funding do not switch to producing HCFCs as industrial feedstock; a use not controlled by the Montreal Protocol.

Over the next four years, China will receive US $95 million to cover the first stage of its HCFC production phase-out management plan. This is designed to assist the country to meet the freeze in HCFC production by 2013 and the reduction by 10 per cent by 2015, as required by the Montreal Protocol's HCFC phase-out schedule.

China's progress towards phasing out HCFC production will be verified by the Multilateral Fund before further funding is awarded. Any interest earned by China on the amounts received will be offset against future funding.
The project with China is potentially the largest approved so far under the Multilateral Fund.

Since 1991, the Multilateral Fund has approved activities including industrial conversion, technical assistance, training and capacity building worth approximately US $3 billion that will result in the phase out of more than 460,000 Ozone Depletion Potential tonnes of ozone-depleting substances in developing countries.

The United Nation Environment Programme (UNEP) is one of four implementing agencies of the Multilateral Fund, along with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) and the World Bank.

Notes to Editors
About the Multilateral Fund for the Implementation of the Montreal Protocol
The Montreal Protocol sets specific time bound targets to reduce and eventually phase-out the consumption and production of chemicals that damage the ozone layer (ozone depleting substances or ODS) in both developed and developing countries.

The Multilateral Fund for the Implementation of the Montreal Protocol was established to provide financial and technical cooperation, including the transfer of technologies to Parties operating under paragraph 1 of Article 5 of the Montreal Protocol, Article 5 countries, to enable their compliance with the Montreal Protocol's targets. Article 5 countries are developing country Parties whose annual per capita consumption and production of CFCs and halons is less than 0.3 kg per capita on the date of entry into force of the Montreal Protocol or any time thereafter until 1 January 1999. There are currently 148 countries categorized as operating under Article 5 paragraph 1 of the Montreal Protocol (September 2012).

The Multilateral Fund is managed by an Executive Committee which is responsible for overseeing the operation of the Fund. The Committee comprises seven members from developed and seven members from developing countries. In 2013 the Committee membership includes Belgium, Bulgaria, Canada, Finland, Japan, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, and the United States of America (developed countries) and India, Kuwait, Mali, Nicaragua, Serbia Uganda and Uruguay (developing country members) . Ms. Fiona Walters (United Kingdom) serves as Chair and Mr. VladanZdravkovic (Serbia) serves as Vice-Chair of the Executive Committee for one year beginning 1 January 2013. The Committee is assisted by the Fund Secretariat which is based in Montreal, Canada. Activities are implemented by four international agencies (UNDP, UNEP, UNIDO, World Bank) and a number of bilateral government agencies.

In September 2007 the Parties to the Montreal Protocol decided to accelerate the freeze and phase-out of hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs). Hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs) are ozone-depleting substances (ODS) with a significant global-warming potential. The Montreal Protocol requires Article 5 country Parties to gradually phase-out HCFCs starting from 2013 with a freeze in consumption and production, a 10 per cent reduction by 2015, 35 per cent reduction by 2020, a 67.5 per cent reduction by 2025 resulting in the complete phase-out of HCFC consumption and production by 2030 while allowing an amount of 2.5 per cent for the servicing of existing refrigeration and air conditioning equipment during the period 2030 to 2040. The Multilateral Fund intends to finance HCFC phase out in the countries eligible for its financial and technical assistance. As at the 69th meeting of the Executive Committee that took place from 15 to 19 April 2013 in Montreal (Canada), 138 Article 5 countries have national plans to phase-out HCFCs in place.
Further Resources

For more information, please contact:
Julia Anne Dearing, Information Management Officer, Secretariat of the Multilateral Fund for the Implementation of the Montreal Protocol, Phone: +1514 282-7862, Mobile: +1 514 591 9353, E-mail:

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UNEP: Asia Overtakes Rest of the World in Consumption of Materials (24 Apr 2013)


Asia Overtakes Rest of the World in Consumption of Materials

Bangkok, 24 April 2013 - Asia Pacific has surpassed the rest of the world in its consumption of materials and will continue to dominate world material flows, according to a new UN Environment Programme (UNEP) report released today.

The region's trade balance indicates that the current rate of exploitation of its resource base is no longer sufficient to support the region's fast-growing economies and changing lifestyles. From 1970-2008, consumption of construction minerals increased 13.4 times, metal ores and industrial minerals consumption 8.6, fossil fuels 5.4, and biomass 2.7 times.

The data indicates that, at this rate, the region will be increasingly dependent on imports and unable to sustain its economies and lifestyles. The current rate of consumption is also having a negative impact on the environment.

The report, Recent Trends in Material Flows and Resource Productivity in Asia and the Pacific, presents an insight of the 2011 Resource Efficiency: Economics and Outlook for Asia and the Pacific (REEO)report on material flows and resource productivity in Asia and the Pacific. It brings together data extending the latest reported year up to 2008 and thus includes the onset of the global financial crisis.

The report highlights the region's material intensity - consumption of materials per dollar of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) - as an area of serious concern, as this will increase pressures on the environment and exceed the region's rapid growth. Currently, material intensity for Asia Pacific is three times the rest of the world.

"Each dollar of GDP requires increasing amount of materials," said Dr. Park Young-Woo, Regional Director of UNEP Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific. "The findings do not give signs of decoupling material consumption and natural resource use from economic growth in the region."

"Resource efficiency needs to increase rapidly to offset material growth in the Asia Pacific region, which needs systems innovations in urban areas, transportation modes, energy production and economic structure," he added.
Almost all of the world's growth in domestic material consumption, from the onset of the global financial crisis in 2008, can be attributed to Asia Pacific, which now shapes the world trajectory on growth in material consumption, according to the report.
Domestic materials consumption increased from 6.2 billion tonnes to 37.5 billion tonnes between 1970 and 2008, an annual growth rate of 4.8 per cent. China and India heavily account for consumption by 2008, with China accounting for over 60 per cent of the regional total domestic material consumption, and India contributing over 14 per cent. The regional average per-capita material consumption now stands at 89 per cent that of the rest of the world.

China shows the most dramatic trends in recent years: Per-capita material consumption increased by 25 per cent between 2005 and 2008. China has reinforced its position as a net importer of materials (in particular petroleum) due to strong domestic demand, contrary to the common perception of China as a mass exporter. 

China has shown good progress in improving resource efficiency since the 1980s, but this has slowed down recently. It is still far less resource-efficient than the Asia Pacific and global averages.

In India, overall material consumption has remained low. However, metal ores and industrial minerals use grew by 8.6 per cent each year over the period from 1998 to 2008, which indicates that India is entering a rapid acceleration phase in its transition to an industrialized economy. The insight showed another new development since the launch of the first REEO report: the stagnation since 2004 of the previously impressive improvements in resource efficiency from 1970 to 2004.

The report found that the region is moving from a biomass- to minerals-based economy, indicating that the most-populous countries like China and India are transitioning from agrarian to industrialized economies. Biomass dropped from more than half to 25 per cent of the region's domestic extraction, while construction materials grew to 51.4 per cent.
Population growth was also found to be the least-important driver of growing extractive pressures on the environment. Growing affluence and material intensity were cited as primary drivers and any effort to stabilize extractive pressure will need to address both, according to the report.

"The findings of the report conclude that countries in Asia and the Pacific face even greater challenges to make the transition of current economic growth patterns towards green growth, and to transform the economies into truly green economy, despite the strong efforts in development of policies and strategies by member countries," said Dr. Park. 
The report also underlined the urgent need for policymakers in the region to be vigilant in using of the latest data when developing their policies. It recommends the establishment of a global harmonized database that shares material use data for all countries as an important step in helping policymakers and businesses anticipate resource issues, and to provide academia with reliable data to support decision makers with the policy relevant science.

Country specific highlights

Australia: Extraction per capita is driven by exports of FF and metal ores.  Australia is increasingly serving as an energy materials supplier to the industrial transformation in the AP region. Resource use per capita is five times the regional and global averages. 

China: See main body of press release.

India: See main body of press release.

Indonesia: Indonesia is a massive exporter of raw materials, in particular fossil fuels.  It has been an unusual case since 2005 in that material consumption per capita and material intensity have decreased in recent years, which is normally desirable. This overall trend is largely due to significant fluctuations in use of one resource group in particular: metal ores. 

Japan: Typically characterized as a stable industrialized economy with a relatively high level of resource use per capita considering the near absence of primary industry. Japan has gradually demonstrated a decline in material intensity.
Malaysia: has shown historical volatility in material use per capita.  Material intensity is high compared to regional averages, but has been declining in recent years.   

Pakistan: The most biomass-based economy (3t biomass/capita out of the total 4.8tmaterials/capita). The slow growth in construction material use per capita reveals the low priority of infrastructure development in this period. 

Republic of Korea (RoK): The historic material use data of the RoK clearly outlines its transition to an industrialized economy since the 1980s.

Thailand: Like many Asian industrializing countries, Thailand's material use patterns are largely dominated by construction materials. In the past years, Thailand showed promising improvements in material intensity, reducing from 4kg/$ in 2004 to 3kg/$ in 2008. 

Viet Nam: The journey from one of the lowest resource users to close to average for the region has been based on a steady acceleration in the use of construction materials (from 0.3t construction materials/cap in 1970 to 5.3t construction materials/cap in 2008).  One interesting finding is a sudden decline in the export of fossil fuels from 2007 to 2008.  This is partly explained by decreased extraction of fossil fuels, but also due to growing domestic demand of fossil fuels.  Viet Nam may be a net importer of fossil fuels in the near future.

For media enquiries contact:

Nick Nuttall, UNEP Director of Communications and Spokesperson
+254 733 632 755, +41 795965737,

UNEP Newsdesk
+254 725 939 620,

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Events: National Institute for Environmental Studies (NIES) Public Symposium 2013: A Borderless Global Environment – movement of atmosphere, life, water and natural resources organized by NIES on 14 Jun and 21 Jun 2013

National Institute for Environmental Studies (NIES) Public 
Symposium 2013: A Borderless Global Environment – movement of atmosphere, life, water and natural resources

April 19 (Friday), 2013
Public Relations Office, Planning Department, National Institute for
Environmental Studies
(Contact: 029-850-2453)
The National Institute for Environmental Studies (NIES) will hold their annual Public Symposium over two Fridays in June, with respective Tokyo and Kyoto chapters to coincide with Environment Month. The theme of this year’s Public Symposium is “A Borderless Global Environment – movement of atmosphere, life,water and natural resources”. We will introduce NIES research outcomes in the diverse fields of atmosphere, biology, water and natural resources as they relate to global environmental issues. Attendance is free.

1. Overview of the National Institute for Environmental Studies Public Symposium 2013

Main Theme: “A Borderless Global Environment – movement of atmosphere, life, water and natural resources”
Summary: Human society is defined by lines of demarcation such as national borders - however no such borders exist when it comes to the global environment. In addition, various movements in the natural world - such as the wind, the tides of the oceans, and the migration of birds across the skies, are now supplemented by activities associated with human society, such as the transit of aircraft and shipping, which define our modern world. The transport of a large range of substances accompanies this movement, and these substances in turn bring with them environmental issues which transcend national borders.
The National Institute for Environmental Studies (NIES) establishes the actual nature of the issues which accompant this transport of substances, and works towards finding their solutions, from a global viewpoint unconfined by manmade boundaries, while maintaining an awareness of temporal scales, in order to effectively foresee the future course of human society. At the NIES Public Symposium there will be five lectures relating to the global environment, and attendees will also have the opportunity to come face-to-face with NIES researchers engaged with such issues at the poster session (19 poster displays are planned).
The poster session will also report on the contributions of activities as part of “Research on Disaster Environment” undertaken at NIES in the immediate wake of the Great East Japan Earthquake. We at NIES are of the hope that our Public Symposium will be a chance to think together about the borderless global environment.

Dates, Times and Venues:

Tokyo Chapter: June 14 (Friday), 2013, 12:00-17:30, Mielparque Hall
Kyoto Chapter: June 21 (Friday), 2013, 12:00-17:30, Silk Hall (Kyoto Sangyo Kaikan, 8F)

2. Program (Same for both Tokyo and Kyoto Chapters)

12:00-13:00Poster Session (19 poster displays)
13:00-Opening Address, NIES President SUMI, Akimasa
13:10-First Lecture: “Changes in global atmospheric carbon dioxide and methane and inference of causes as seen from the GHG observation satellite “IBUKI””, Tatsuya YOKOTA
13:50-Second Lecture: “Atmospheric substances around the globe: windborne causes of atmospheric pollution and climate change”, Seiji SUGATA
14:30-Third Lecture: “Ants around the globe – globalization and the issue of invasive alien species”, Koichi GOKA
15:25-Fourth Lecture: “Japan and the world connected by water – our lifestyles and the world’s water problems”, Naota HANASAKI
16:05-Fifth Lecture: “Environmental burdens accompanying the international supply chain and resource consumption”,Keisuke NANSAI
16:45Closing Remarks: Hideo HARASAWA, NIES Vice President
16:50-17:30Poster Session: * As per poster session from 12:00, but with additional participation of symposium speakers

Poster Session, Titles

  1. 1. Initiatives towards recovery and restoration from the Great East Japan Earthquake
  2. 2. Countermeasures for disaster and radioactively contaminated waste for Fukushima
  3. 3. Town planning for post-disaster regional recovery – environmental energy technologies and policy assessment tools
  4. 4. Japan Environment and Children’s Study – progress report for the nationwide survey on children’s health and the environment
  5. 5. Yellow sand from across the oceans and the health impacts of transboundary pollution
  6. 6. Study towards a toxicity evaluation method using cultured cells of suspended particulate matter
  7. 7. Particulate matter emissions from gasoline automobiles – compromises between improvement of fuel efficiency and atmospheric pollutants?
  8. 8. Short term changes in carbon dioxide concentrations in the upper atmosphere – CONTRAIL Project for atmospheric observation using commercial airlines
  9. 9. Observation of carbon dioxide concentrations in the atmosphere and ocean of the pacific
  10. 10. Impact of global warming on the Sea of Japan – extreme changes in maritime environments in the past 50 years
  11. 11. Migratory ecology of freshwater fish in the Mekong, the international waterway
  12. 12. Long-term trend monitoring of Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs) in Japanese coastal areas – monitoring activities using bivalves
  13. 13. Monitoring study for gene recombinant rapeseed
  14. 14. Investigating the carcinogenic mechanism of inorganic arsenic
  15. 15. Improvement of household methanation devices for organic waste in the Asian region
  16. 16. Cobenefit waste water treatment technologies for environmental conservation and material cycles – appropriate treatment of molasses-based wastewater
  17. 17. Study for a new wastewater management method using bioresponse – using living organisms to test water
  18. 18. Roadmap for Asian Low Carbon Society – Ten actions toward Low Carbon Asia
  19. 19. Research on strategies for low carbon Asian cities – case study of the Iskandar Development Region, Malaysia

3. Dates, Times and Venues

Tokyo Chapter: 12:00-17:30, June 14 (Friday), 2013, Mielparque Hall, 2-5-10, Shibakouen, Minato-ku, Tokyo 105-8582, Tel: 03-3433-7221
Access: 10 Minutes walk from JR Monorail Hamatsu Station / 2 minutes walk from Exit A3, Shibakoen Station, Toei Mita Line / 4 minutes walk from Exit A3 or A6, Daimon Station, Oedo Line
Kyoto Chapter: 12:00-17:30, June 21 (Friday), 2013, Silk Hall, Kyoto Sangyo Kaikan 8F, Address: Moromachi-higashihairu, Shijou-dori, Karasumaru, Shimogyouku, Kyoto City, Tel: 075-211-8341
Access: 3 minutes walk from Exit 26, Toei subway, Karasumaru line, Shijou station / Hankyu Railways, Kyoto line, Karasumaru station

4. Application Method

  1. (1) Official Symposium Site
    Register for either the Tokyo or Kyoto Chapters of the NIES Public Symposium at the following page: (
    A confirmation mail will be automatically dispatched. Please print and bring this on the day for entrance to the NIES Public Symposium.
  2. (2) Mobile Symposium Site (
    A confirmation mail will be automatically dispatched. Please print and bring this on the day for entrance to the NIES Public Symposium.
  3. (3) Postcard/Fax
    Please write your name/contact address/contact telephone number/Fax No./Email address, and whether you wish to participate in the Tokyo or Kyoto Chapters of the NIES Public Symposium on a postcard, or fax these details to the below address/Fax No.
* In order that we can accommodate numbers, we request that you complete the application process as soon as possible
** The symposium will be recorded for our records, and put on the NIES homepage at a future date. We ask for your understanding and cooperation

5. Contact

Administrative Office, National Institute for Environmental Studies (NIES) Public Symposium 2013 Stage Inc., Takamatsu 1-1-11, Toshima-ku, Tokyo (Attn: Sagawa, Inagaki, Kagami)
Tel.: 03-3958-5292 Fax: 03-5966-5773

Privacy Policy

  1. a) Any personal information submitted will be subject to the NIES security polcy and will not be used for any other purposes than those related to the Public Symposium
  2. b) Any such information is being submitted to the symposium hosts, the National Institute for Environmental Studies
  3. c) Applicants may be sent information on the next symposium. However the dispatch of such information can be cancelled immediately on request.

Below: Images from the NIES Public Symposium 2012

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Publication: Urban wastewater and agricultural reuse challenges in India by P. Amerashnghe (Apr 2013)

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Urban wastewater and agricultural reuse challenges in India by P. Amerashnghe

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Urban wastewater management has become a major challenge in India as infrastructural development and regulations have not kept pace with population growth and urbanisation. This stuudy argues that against the backdrop of water scarcity and climate change, it is important to examine issues related to wastewater reuse more holistically and to investigate the challenges and opportunities for its safe and efficient reuse. The study attempts to analyse the current status of wastewater generation, its uses and livelihood benefits especially in agriculture, based on national data and case studies from Ahmedabad, New Delhi, Hyderabad, Kanpur and Kolkata. Specifically, the objective is to provide estimates of wastewater generation and treatment, synthesise existing data on agricultural use of wastewater, and assess the related benefits and economic value, as well as the potentially adverse environmental and human health impacts.

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Publication: Climate resilience and disaster risk management: stories of change from CDKN by M. Dupar (Apr 2013)

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Climate resilience and disaster risk management: stories of change from CDKN by M. Dupar

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This brief presents results from projects supported by the Climate and Development Knowledge Network (CDKN) to assess vulnerability and mainstream climate resilience into development planning. Case studies from India, Ghana and Colombia illustrate the importance of involving diverse social groups in defining and monitoring vulnerability and delivering adaptation solutions. The paper highlights the use of innovative techniques such as role-playing games to raise people’s awareness of the tough challenges posed by decision-making in a changing climate. Examples include: an initiative to protect residents of Ahmedabad, western India from heatwaves through common sense measures; a programme of witness tours and capacity building for local assembly members in Ghana, to raise awareness of climate-related risks to coastal development; and an ambitious process of vulnerability assessment in Cartagena, Colombia.

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