The Mitsui & Co. Environment Fund

Introduction to Grant Projects

Hokkaido Environment Foundation

Creating environmental tourism in the Soya region of Wakkanai (Soya ESD Project)

Activity grant

Project Description

Blessed with an abundant natural beauty, Wakkanai is one of the best tourist spots in Hokkaido, but the decline of the area following a fall in population and tourist numbers is remarkable. However, as a result of a pioneering approach to regional energy development, it has become one of Japan's leading areas for renewable energy production, particularly solar and wind. It is also peppered with initiatives that are at the forefront of regional self-sufficiency and development, such as wetland regeneration in harmony with surrounding primary industry, and public-private nature schools. This project aims to work with these environment-related regional resources and projects to create a new form of tourism and will experiment with branding it as environmental social development (ESD) in the field. Specifically, this will involve holding project meetings with partners from industry, academia, and the private and public sectors, identifying and arranging existing resources and personnel, and developing and implementing model tours. Through this activity it hopes to increase the flow of people through the region, reaffirm the value of resources such as renewable energy facilities, and initiate new economic activity.

Climate changeEnergy problemPreservation of biodiversity and ecosystem
Grant year
FY2009 Activity Grants
Grant term
2 years
April 2010 - March 2012
Grant amount
8,457,565 yen
Activity region
The Soya region of Wakkanai, Hokkaido, Japan
Cape Soya Wind Farm, which hopes to become an environmental tourism resource

Overview of the Organization

Tatsuichi Tsujii, President
Tatsuichi Tsujii, President
Establishment purpose
Hokkaido Environment Foundation was established using funding from Hokkaido Prefecture in order to encourage citizen-led environmental conservation and support a range of initiatives, such as the provision of environmental education opportunities, and information exchange.
Main area of activity
Hokkaido, Japan
8 full-time staff members
Annual operating budget
154.85 million yen in 2007, 168.10 million yen in 2008, 187.71 million yen in 2009
WEB site
Recent activities
The foundation connects people and regions, and develops and furthers environmental conservation and education initiatives with the aim of creating a sustainable Hokkaido where environment, economy and society are in harmony. It also operates the Hokkaido Environmental Support Center as a base for learning and information exchange, and since being designated by the governor of Hokkaido as a center for encouraging initiatives tackling global warming in 1999, it has been supporting and promoting these kinds of initiatives. It also operates the Ministry of the Environment's Hokkaido Environmental Partnership Office (EPO Hokkaido).