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Home > Outline of Japan's Industrial Pollution Abatement > Approaches to Air pollution Control (Case Study-1) Yokkaichi City, Mie prefecture > (5) Yokkaichi Pollution Lawsuit

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Update:April 1, 2010

(5) Yokkaichi Pollution Lawsuit

1.Construction of Petrochemical Complexes and the Outset of Pollution

In 1967, patients living in Isozu District filed a civil suit against 6 companies affiliated to Complex No.1. This was escalated into the "Yokkaichi Pollution Lawsuit", the first pollution-related trial in Japan.
After 5 years, in 1972, the case was decided in favor of the plaintiff, thereby revealing ignorance of the companies and the inadequateness of administrative control measures. Impelled by the Yokkaichi Pollution Lawsuit, local governments and private enterprises had recognized the importance of air pollution control efforts as their principal responsibility and started the development of various countermeasures to overcome Pollution-related problems. The above chain of events later became a benchmark for the national government and other local governments in guiding their administrative action for environmental protection.