On February 25, 2021, the Tokyo Metropolitan Government (TMG) gave a keynote report on its VOC measures at the “2020 General Meeting and VOC Technology Exchange Meeting.” This meeting was jointly held by the Institute for Global Environmental Strategies (IGES) and The Sino-Japan Friendship Center for Environmental Protection Center in Beijing, China, as part of the “Cooperation on research and model projects to improve air quality” based on the agreement which was signed by the Ministry of the Environment of Japan and the Ministry of Environmental Protection of the P.R. China. More than 100 people from the central government and local governments in Japan and China participated online, and the online broadcast in China was accessed more than 6,400 times.
* What is VOC? A VOC (volatile organic compound) is one of the causes of photochemical oxidant formation and is a general term for organic compounds that easily evaporate. VOCs, together with nitrogen oxides (NOx), produce new air pollutants, collectively called photochemical oxidants, when exposed to sunlight, which become photochemical smog at high concentrations.
In the keynote report, the official of the Chemical Substances Management Section, Environmental Improvement Division, Bureau of Environment took the stage and introduced an outline of the technical supports for small and medium-businesses and the raising of awareness of low VOC products for consumers performed by the TMG.
TMG has been working on various air pollution countermeasures to improve air pollution. Since the voluntary efforts of small and medium businesses are indispensable for reducing VOC emissions, TMG has created technical guidebooks and has been dispatching technical advisors to offer guidance to such enterprises. For general consumers on the other hand, TMG has created friendly guidebooks aiming to popularize low VOC products to this wider audience. On the day of the event, the Shanghai Government announced its efforts with reference to the measures taken by TMG, and the importance of future efforts for intercity cooperation to improve the air quality was reaffirmed.