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What is Cleaner Production?

Technologies of Treatment of Air Pollution, Water Pollution and Waste Treatment were called “End of Pipe Technology” because they disposed of pollutants at an outlet. Against that, in Agenda 21 adopted at "United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (Earth Summit )" in 1992 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, "Cleaner Production (CP)" was suggested to progress. CP includes not only the conventional technologies for each facility and measure (Hard Technology), but the technologies for operation and management methods (Soft Technology), based on the idea of reducing the environmental burden in every process from extracting of raw materials to disposal of products and reuse. Currently, the collection and dissemination of the technology information are regarded as one of the important international subjects and countries are making efforts to tackling the issue.

In Japan, the technologies of energy saving and waste reduction have been accumulated a great deal. GEC also has collected and offered some inexpensive ways to improve on site as On-site Green Technique: OGT. In fact, however, these concepts of CP Technology are not prevalent enough in themselves.
UNEP IE (Industry and Environment offices in Paris), which currently has changed its name to UNEP/DTIE (Division of Technology, Industry, and Economics) was engaged in disseminating concepts of CP and collecting information, and distributes a database compiled original information and a case study, The International Cleaner Production Information Clearinghouse (ICPIC). Currently UNEP/DTIE is conducting National Cleaner Production Centres (NCPCs) pogramme, in which UNEP and United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) have joined forces to help introduce Cleaner Production in developing countries and countries in transition by establishing NCPCs. The purpose of NCPCs programme is to promote capacity development to help achieve adoption and further development of the Cleaner Production concept at the national level through disseminate technical information and other activities.

According to International Declaration on Cleaner Production, which was adopted at the fifth International High Level Seminar held in South Korea in September, 1998, CP was defined as follows: "We understand Cleaner Production to be the continuous application of an integrated, preventive strategy applied to processes, products and services in pursuit of economic, social, health, safety and environmental benefits." This shows us that CP includes not only the improvement in the producing process, but also various categories in a wide range. UNEP is attempting to disseminate the concepts and concrete technologies of CP much further by urging governments, companies and other entities concerned to sign the International Declaration.
According to a report “Cleaner Production and Eco-efficiency” published by UNEP/WBSCD (World Business Council for Sustainable Development) in 1998, governments need to carry out a review of legislation while stakeholders need to cooperate and coordinate in order to promote cleaner production, the result of which would be less resource usage and waste by a society as a whole and greater creation of value.

"Basic Concept of Cleaner Production"

Some examples are given as follows:

Products Improvement
Material Substitution
Improvement of Producing Process and Equipment
Separation & Reuse
Factory Management
Life Cycle Management

GEC Cleaner Production Technology Database
GEC Environmental Technology Database (NETT21) is a database of the technology information which Japanese private and public corporations provided GEC with for the purpose of supporting the resolution of the environmental pollution problems, at present developing countries face.

(1) Database Version 1.0 (1998 Project)

Regarding the configuration of the Database Version 1.0,

GEC has drawn up a database focused on the process.

This project was also put into practice as "The GEC Collaboration Project with The UNEP International Environmental Technology Centre" entrusted by Environmental Agency (currently Ministry of the Environment ), Government of Japan.


(2) Database Version 2.0 (2007-2008 Project)

Harnessing the results of preliminary studies carried out in 2006, GEC launched the second version of the Cleaner Production Technologies database with new information on initiatives relating to products and services. This new database builds on the work of its predecessor (Version1.0), which focuses mainly on improvements to production processes. This database is an extension of the Cleaner Production Technology Database which conforms with the UNEP International Declaration on Cleaner Production (CP) adopted at the aforementioned UNEP's 5th International High-level Seminar on Cleaner Production held in September 1998.

Figure : Focus of the Cleaner Production Technologies Database Version 2.0

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