A clean ocean

Promoting measures to deal with marine litter and ocean plastic waste

Project Promoting Local Measures Against Coastal Litter

Period: From 2009
Organizations: Ministry of the Environment, prefectures, municipalities, and others

Recent years have seen growing concern over reduced coastal functions, the deterioration of the environment and landscapes, and impediments caused to marine navigation due to marine litter. The Ministry of the Environment has been providing support through subsidies, in accordance with the Act on Promoting the Treatment of Articles that Drift Ashore, for projects that relate to the formulation of local plans concerning marine litter, the collection and disposal of marine litter, and measures to inhibit the generation of marine litter (including events consisting of beach clean-up activities and the provision of environmental education carried out for the purpose of raising awareness) as implemented by prefectures and municipalities. In addition to conserving the ocean environment through the promotion of measures to deal with marine litter throughout the country, this project endeavors to promote and conserve exceptional marine landscapes for the future and thereby maintain the ocean in a beautiful and rich state, which is vital for promoting local communities and such key local industries as fishing and tourism.

Collection and disposal of marine litter with heavy machinery and volunteers

Plastics Smart

Period: From 2019
Organization: Ministry of the Environment

Plastics Smart is an initiative promoted by the Ministry of the Environment to help solve the problem of plastic waste in the ocean. Ministries, agencies, industry organizations, companies, local governments, NGOs, consumers, and other parties are invited to submit smart ideas for living with plastics, such as those that involve reducing the amount of unnecessary single-use plastics and developing and utilizing substitute materials. These ideas are then disseminated widely across Japan and overseas using a variety of different opportunities and methods. As of the first of 2021, more than 2,200 ideas have been registered to the website(http://plastics-smart.env.go.jp/)that was set up as part of these efforts.

Plastics Smart logo mark
This logo mark is provided free of charge for use by supporters of this initiative. Affixing this mark to news releases, product catalogs, business cards, and other items helps to publicize the fact that initiatives to help solve the problem of plastic waste in the ocean are being implemented.

Investigating and Building an Ocean Plastic Waste Mapping Database

Period: From 2020
Organization: Ministry of the Environment

In order to eradicate the worldwide problem of plastic waste in the ocean, on a global scale, it will be necessary to have countries around the world share scientific data on the distribution of plastic waste and establish effective measures based on such data. This initiative will collect and centralize data related to the monitoring of plastic waste in the ocean as conducted around the world and study the development of a global center for the collection of data.