Many of developing countries have come to rely on their own human and natural resources for industrialization in recent years. Industries are becoming to contribute to the growth of Gross National Products, as private investment from developed countries promote location of factories. Although rapid industrialization has a great effect on employment and foreign currency reserves, it causes serious environmental pollution as a result of increase in the volume of pollutant emissions. The environmental pollution problems faced by the developing countries are similar to those experienced by the developed countries.
Since the developing countries give priority to economic development and do not give concern to environmental conservation, their measures to control environmental pollution often lag behind the extension of pollution. This leads to higher levels of air pollution from soot, dust, sulfur oxides and nitrogen oxides, water and soil pollution due to hazardous substances like heavy metals, and increase in industrial wastes.
The increasingly interdependent global economy would benefit greatly if developing countries tackled such problems and achieved environmentally-sound economic development. In addition, the realization of "sustainable development" with both economic development and environmental conservation as put forth at UNCED will bring great benefits to all nations. The developing countries are starting to implement anti-pollution measures, such as the introduction of environmentally-sound equipment as well as regulations.
Through cooperation among peoples, enterprises and government, Japan has gained valuable experience in overcoming oil crises and the aggravated pollution problems that followed the economic boom of the late 1960s, and has amassed a wealth of experience and technology. Developing countries expect Japan to transfer the technology and expertise it has accumulated in the area of pollution prevention.
However, since there are great differences among countries in terms of environmental conditions, economic and technological progress, and public-morals and practices, it is necessary to transfer technology appropriate to the actual situation in a developing country after accurately evaluating the needs of the country and taking into account the existing level of technological development. Sometimes the technologies developed when Japan first addressed environmental issues could actually be more useful to a developing country than the latest technologies. In addition, there are many cases in which the traditional technologies or knowledge of other developing countries are highly beneficial.
In this context, the Committee for Studying Transfer of Environmental Technology was established in October of 1994 with myself as chairman, in the Global Environment Centre Foundation, supporting the UNEP International Environmental Technology Centre (UNEP/IETC) which was invited to Osaka. The UNEP/IETC was established for the purpose of transferring environmentally-sound technologies to developing countries, as well as countries with economies in transition.
The committee is composed of representatives from the Environment Agency, Japan, Osaka Prefectural Government, Osaka Municipal Government, and 16 companies such as manufacturers of environmental equipment. The committee has formulated policies intended to promote the successful transfer of environmentally-sound technologies to developing countries, by providing them with information on Japan's various environmental technologies.
This work features a group of technologies offered by each corporate committee member for tackling atomspheric pollution. As we strive to collect further information, we feel that this is a major step toward compiling information on environmentally-sound technologies.
We expect that this work will be useful in solving pollution problems of developing countries as it is applied in respective area.
Finally I would like to express my sincere gratitude to the members of the Committee for Studying Transfer of Environmental Technology, and to many other people who contributed to this work.
Nobuo Takeda, Chairman
Committee for Studying Transfer of Environmental Technology