Nagoya City: Mayor Takashi Kawamura

In 2010, Nagoya City hosted COP10 as well as the City Biodiversity Summit, the latter of which ICLEI participated as a co-sponsor. The close cooperation between the city and ICLEI allowed the Summit to become a success.

Hosting COP10 has led the residents and communities of Nagoya to become more active in conserving and developing the nature that is close to them. In order to continue and develop these efforts further, Nagoya City established the Nagoya Biodiversity Center in 2011. Through this institution, we are working to carry out biological surveys and conservation programs in cooperation with citizens, accumulate the information obtained therefrom, and communicate the results of these efforts to society as a whole so that others can understand them easily.

In the future, Nagoya City will continue to exchange information with other local governments in Japan and abroad through ICLEI, and work actively to conserve the regional natural environment.

Overview of Nagoya City

Population: Approx. 2.3 million (as of June 2016)

Nagoya City faces the Pacific Ocean and is located in the center of the main island of Japan, at the mouth of a river in the Nobi Plain.

With 93% of the city covered by urban districts, Nagoya is highly urbanized. It is also developing as a central city of the Chukyo area, one of the country’s three major urban areas.

Environmental initiatives

Formerly, Nagoya City saw the amount of garbage disposed of increase constantly, and in 1998, its garbage incineration facilities and landfill sites alike were reaching their limits in terms of treatment capacity. At that time, the city government had been proceeding with a plan to build a next-generation landfill site in the Fujimae Tidal Flat, but since the tidal flat was the destination of migratory birds, there was a growing call from the citizens for the cancellation of the plan. In this backdrop, after careful consideration, in January 1999, the city government decided to cancel the plan to fill in the tidal flat. In February of the same year, it declared a state of "garbage emergency," when the city frankly emphasized the straitened circumstances of garbage disposal to citizens and business operators, and requested them, along with administrative agencies, to cooperate in order to reduce garbage substantially. Subsequently, in 2013, thanks to all-out efforts to sort out and recycle garbage, the amount of garbage disposed of was reduced by around 40% and that of landfills by around 80%. Meanwhile, the Fujimae Tidal Flat, which had been spared from becoming a landfill site, was registered as a wetland site of international importance under the Ramsar Convention in 2002.

As such, the power of civic cooperation developed through garbage reduction initiatives led to Nagoya hosting the 2005 World Exposition, Aichi, Japan (Environmental Expo), the 10th Meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (COP10), and the UNESCO World Conference on Education for Sustainable Development (ESD). Nagoya will continue to aim at becoming a sustainable city with the title “Eco-Capital Nagoya” through civic cooperation. 

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