『平成24年度TEMM「グリーン成長及び低炭素社会に関する共同研究」 北九州市――公害都市から環境未来都市へ』

Commissioned Report

Japan has ambitious GHG reduction targets, aiming to reduce emission against the 1990 baseline by 25% by 2020 and 80% by 2050, an aim which is heavily supported through a variety of legislation during the last two decades. As a heavily urbanized country there is a strong focus on low carbon city development, the most notable programmes deriving from this being the Eco-Model Cities and Future City programmes.
Kitakyushu City is one of the pre-eminent eco-cities of Japan and is a member of both those programmes. Previously an industrial powerhouse, Kitakyushu was notorious for its high levels of pollution. Efforts to alleviate the problem were initially started by women’s groups and culminated in a partnership between the citizens, the city and local companies whereby plants were assessed, academics and city government consulted and a mutually agreement plan involving fuel conversion, public alerts and awareness raising was implemented.
The city then founded the Kitakyushu Eco-Town as a public-private partnership in 1991. It covers 38.8 ha and comprises industrial plants, research facilities and a waste-to-energy (WTE) plant. Recycling covers a great variety of items from bottles to office equipment and home appliances, cars and construction waste. Non-recyclable materials are processed in a waste-to-energy plant which meets all of Eco-Town’s electricity demand. This has led to substantial CO2 savings and job creation. An onsite centre was setup in 2001 and has had in excess of 1 million visitors.
Following this, Kitakyushu City has been designated as an Eco-Model City due to its substantial environmental efforts including the establishment of a Smart Community Project (one of only four in Japan); the conversion of sewerage sludge into cement and greening efforts. More recently Kitakyushu has been designated as a Japan Future City and aims to scale up its current work across the city over the coming years.

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