The Mitsui & Co. Environment Fund

Introduction to Grant Projects

Kochi Prefecture Department of Culture and Environment, Bureau of Ecology (with participation from the Mitsui & Co. Shikoku Branch)

Protecting and maintaining forests, rivers and coastlines

Activity grant

Project Description

Kochi is Japan's most forested prefecture with forests covering 84% of its total area. However, about 65% of this is manmade Japanese red-cedar and hinoki cypress forest planted following the Second World War, and the decline of the local forestry industry means they are not being managed, creating problems such as weakened water retention functions and soil runoff. This situation has resulted in several conservation initiatives, such as Kochi becoming the first prefecture in Japan to introduce a forest environment tax, and increased interest in the forests' CO2 absorption functions has led to the advancement of activities in partnership with corporation through the Collaborative Forest Restoration with Environmentally Progressive Companies initiative. The Mitsui & Co. Shikoku Branch embraced the spirit of this initiative and became the first partner company to participate. It is also sending staff from the branch and other group companies on activities such as tree thinning experiences in order to create environmentally aware workplaces.

Climate changePreservation of surface soil and forestsEnergy problem
Grant year
FY2005 Activity Grants
Grant term
3 years
April 2006 - March 2009
Grant amount
3,000,000 yen
Activity region
Ino (formerly Hongawa), Agawa District, Kochi Prefecture, Japan
Staff from Mitsui and group companies receive training in forest thinning at the Mitsui & Co. and Ino Partnership Forest

Overview of the Organization

Masayoshi Yano, Bureau Chief
Masayoshi Yano, Bureau Chief
Establishment purpose
The bureau was established with the aim of promoting initiatives that encourage co-existence with Kochi Prefecture's bountiful nature, conserve and use the area's pure stream water, and combat global warming, in order to build a low-carbon society.
Main area of activity
Kochi Prefecture, Japan
21 full-time staff members
Recent activities
  • (1) Engaging in citizen led measures to combat global warming in the area, and collaborating with companies to maintain forests with CO2 absorbing functions through the Collaborative Forest Restoration with Environmentally Progressive Companies initiative. Engaging in prefecturally recognized initiatives such as issuing 'CO2 absorption credits' to collaborating reforestation activities and reducing CO2 emissions through the use of woody biomass fuel.
  • (2) Protecting rare plant and animal species that perform important environmental functions, conserving and managing Kochi's abundant natural areas and wilderness parks, and managing prefectural livestock farms and botanical gardens.
  • (3) Conserving the pure waters of the Shimanto River, Monobe River, Niyodo River, and Kochi's other valuable water sources, encouraging their use by as many people as possible, and preserving them for following generations.