31 May,2002

Mie Asaoka
President, Kiko Network

[31. May 2002]

Today, Japanese Diet approves ratification of the Kyoto Protocol and passes the revised Law Concerning the Promotion of the Measures to Cope with Global Warming at the plenary session of the House of Councilors. The document will be sent to UN headquarter in New York after Cabinet's signing on 4th June. We welcome Japan to finish the ratification procedure preparing for Johannesburg Summit.

However the real implementation remains and crucial works should follow, including battles against additional rent seeking activities in the framework of Kyoto Protocol. Recognizing the fact that Japan's CO2 emission in 1999 has already increased 10% from 1990 level, it has become clear that Japan needs to strengthen its domestic measures to comply with the Kyoto Protocol. In order to meet the target, Japan should establish concrete measures to sufficiently enforce its target (-6%) mainly by domestic measures, so as not to depend too much on sinks or imported credits.

It is well understood that the new Guideline of Measures to Prevent Global Warming, which is only a compilation of each ministries' existing policies, is not sufficient to reduce CO2 emission drastically. Koizumi administration should start citizen's participatory decision making process on effective policies and measures such as Carbon Tax. We urge the government to show its strong political will to prevent climate change and strive for a big shift in policy-making process.

Besides, policies to support efforts in local communities are necessary. Under the revised Law Concerning the Promotion of the Measures to Cope with Global Warming, NPOs can be designated as the local Center for Climate Change Actions in each prefecture. The management of these centers by NPOs, though it matches their roles, cannot be functioned without the full support of the national and local governments. We also will fascilitate the process to establish local council by all sectors as our responsibilities.

Just today, EU has completed the procedure for their ratification. The entry into force of the Protocol is more likely to come true. We encourage other developed countries, such as Russia, Canada, and Central-Eastern European countries, to follow soon and the Protocol come to entry into force within this year.