Linkage Forum for Lake Biwa & the Yodo River


Various environmental protection activities are being carried out in the Yodo River basin, which originates at the river’s source in Lake Biwa (Shiga Prefecture), but historically there was not a very strong network for connecting those activities. There was also a lack of specific interaction and/or relationships where people recognized one another. Therefore, the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism {MLIT}, utilizing its intermediary support functions at Lake Biwa in collaboration with staff at Kinki Kankyokan (the Kinki Environment Building), took steps to begin dealing with these problems. They did so in part by working to overcome interagency and administrative district barriers, thus helping connect various actors concerned with the protection of different areas of the Yodo River basin – from Lake Biwa to the river’s final outlet, Osaka Bay. The joint activities carried out in this regard included meetings to exchange views, eco tours, etc.

This effort was carried out as a joint plan over three years, starting from the beginning of 2008:
In 2008, on-site observations were made → participants learned about the issues involved;
In 2009, they learned about the other parties involved → by solving problems, deeper relationships were realized;
Then, in 2010, proposals were made for achievable collaboration → this concerned role-sharing & intrinsic networks.

Since 2011, as a comprehensive partnership for Lake Biwa and the Yodo River basin, through cooperation between the various actors in the Lake Biwa & Yodo River basin areas, the concerned parties have spontaneously developed proactive environmental protection approaches which are conscious of the basin, as well as collaborative relationships.

Points about the partnership

Utilizing the fact that the actors, and the focus of activities of the organizations involved, are diverse, the network was coordinated so as to become a means of ESD (Education for Sustainable Development) in and of itself.


■Project cooperation/project accord ■Planning ■Co-hosting


■Forest preservation ■Prevention of climate change/energy-related ■ESD(Education for Sustainable Development)/environmental education ■Biodiversity/nature conservation ■Air/water/soil protection ■Waste/’3R’ principles (reduce/reuse/recycle)/resource cycles ■Town planning ■Ecotourism


Water Station BIWA (an intermediary support function of the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism (MLIT)), Kinki Kankyokan (Kinki Environmental Partnership Office)


Kinki Regional Environment Office, MLIT’s Yodo River Office, MLIT’s Kinki Regional Development Bureau Biwako Office, Lake Biwa ‘rangers’ (citizen educators/coordinators), Yodo River ‘rangers’, NPOs in Shiga Prefecture & Osaka (at least 20 organizations)

Case study literature/websites etc.(Japanese Only)

The Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism {MLIT}’s Yodo River Office / Yodo River-jurisdiction ‘rangers’ (citizen educators/coordinators)

MLIT’s Kinki Regional Development Bureau Biwako Office / Lake Biwa ‘rangers’

Water Station BIWA