The Mitsui & Co. Environment Fund

Introduction to Grant Projects


Iki iki project for living beings and the community-Environmental Protection activities in the Izunuma ecosystem

Activity grant

Project Description

Lake Izu (Izunuma) located in the northern part of Miyagi Prefecture, Japan is designated as a registered wetland under the Ramsar Convention and is one of the nation's most popular stopovers for migartory birds. However, in recent years the proliferation of non-native species including the large mouth bass and red swamp crayfish has led to fears of the extinction of native plant and animal species. This group has been studying methods for the preservation of native plants and animals including submerged plants, bivalve crustaceans, and small fish species and has placed floating islands planted with Indian rice (root curtains) in the lake. This has resulted in higher survival rates for small fish and has made possible the revival of production of bivalve crustaceans, with which the fish have a symbiotic relationship. Working together with elementary schools and vocational aid centers fibrous structures ('trees') that block non-native species have been constructed and placed in Izu Lake providing places of refuge for small fish-a lake bottom man made forest. Prototypes were made and tested and these structures will be manufactured, placed in the lake and their effectiveness monitored. In order to raise awareness of this project, site visits and forums will be held.

Preservation of biodiversity and ecosystem
Grant year
FY2009 Activity Grants
Grant term
3 years
October 2009 - September 2012
Grant amount
4,287,000 yen
Activity region
Izunuma area, Kurihara City, Miyagi Prefecture, Japan
Indian grass islands in Lake Izu

Overview of the Organization

Ryuichi Sudo, Chaiman
Ryuichi Sudo, Chaiman
Establishment purpose
Regarding environmental problems, it is necessary that citizens can make sound decisions based on correct information, and it is vital that solutions are sought while being aware of environmental issues of a global scale. We, as specialists in environmental issues are committed to passing on to local communities and citizens our accummulated knowledge and techniques, and providing support for environmental policies and education based on academic knowledge, while performing sustained activities to seek fundamental solutions to global and local environmental issues. experts in.
Recent activities
Nationwide with a focus on the Tohoku region
1 full-time staff member, 3 part-time staff members, 97 full members
Annual operating budget
13 million yen in 2006, 16 million yen in 2007, 14 million yen in 2008
Recent activities
Since fiscal 2005 this NPO implemented for three years the 'Communing with freshwater lakes' project commissioned by the Japan's Ministry of the Environment. They improved the water quality of Lake Izu and conducted research to preserve biodiversity and environmental protection activities. Also, since fiscal 2008 it has autonomously implemented sustained research and activities to protect the environment of Lake Izu. In addition, in fiscal 2008, to improve the quality of water in a stream that feeds the lake formed by Sou no Seki dam in Rifu cho, Miyagi Prefecture the group collaborated with the local Karasuge Society to plant Karasuge (a species of sedge) to purify the stream water and utilised water from holding ponds used in agriculture to work with local elementary schools to cutivate Hechima (a type of gourd), the growth of which was observed and used to help children consider the consequences of water pollution.