The Mitsui & Co. Environment Fund

Introduction to Grant Projects

SPERA forest, land, ocean - leading a generation (NPO)

Creating the Yanagawa eel sanctuary where eels can coexist with children playing in the water

Activity grant

Project Description

Yanagawa in Fukuoka - also known as the capital of water, where canals were built to control the flow of water for inhabitants to live - was once home to Japanese eel, a species of eel once designated as an endangered species. However, the canals are now in dire condition, with no sight of the once ubiquitous Japanese eel as passage to the Ariake Sea was cut off. This project aims to bring back Japanese eel to the canals of Yanagawa. More specifically, this will be achieved by organizing a symposium and conducting ecological surveys. The project is expected to promote regional revitalization by prompting interest in the connection between land and sea. A more long-term goal is to recreate a sustainable water cycle. [No. K17-0030]

Ecosystems and the Symbiotic Society
Grant year
FY2017 Activity Grants
Grant term
Three years (From October 2017 to September 2020)
Grant amount
6.7 million yen
Activity region
Yanagawa-shi, Fukuoka (Yanagawa Canal)
Baby eels recaptured by Ishikura Basket Investigation (Dec. 2017)

Overview of the Organization

Representative: Katsu Tanaka
Project organization
SPERA forest, land, ocean - leading a generation (NPO)
Administrative Director: Satomi Uchiyama
Establishment Purpose
Environmental education will be provided for those that live close to the waters by teaching the philosophy of coexistence of humans, oceans and mountains, the connection between people and nature, and organizing projects related to conservation and improvement of riparian zones. This will contribute to environmental education and particularly focus on the supporting a brighter future for children.
Recent Activities
Projects that ensure a future devoid of uncertainties are being undertaken with collaboration between 'forests are oceans' lover' and projects are being carried forward under the philosophy which espouses the notion that all life on earth derives its existence from the circulation of water.
Number of Part timers: 2 / Number of Members: 60
WEB site
Voice of Representative
While working to revitalize the Japanese eel - known for playing a main role in connecting the sea with the forest, we will also redevelop the waterways and bring back the children playing in those areas, presenting a regional revitalization plan, and revitalize the Ariake Sea, and the environment of the coastal areas and fishing industry