Preface & Background

The Earth Summit was held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil in 1992 to raise awareness about the global environment and move toward sustainability to ensure that all living things could exist in harmony.

In the same year, Asahi Glass Foundation founded the Blue Planet Prize; and the first laureates were announced at the Earth Summit.

Since then, the Asahi Glass Foundation has awarded Blue Planet Prizes for the past 25 years to individuals, groups, and organizations who have worked toward solving global environmental issues. We have continued this activity in the hope of raising public awareness about global environmental issues by making the achievements of the Blue Planet laureates known to the world.

In 2017, 25 years after the Earth Summit, the Blue Planet Prize also celebrates its 25th anniversary.

Looking back over the past quarter of a century, the concentration of carbon dioxide in the air has exceeded 400 ppm, flood and drought have become more frequent, typhoons have become stronger, and coastal areas and islands have become submerged due to the rises in the sea level. These global environmental issues that were at one time simply research themes have changed into actual issues that have a direct impact on our lives.

Against this backdrop, COP21, which took place in Paris in December 2015, adopted agreements on two matters: (1) Keeping the increase in average global temperature this century well below 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels and exerting effort to limit temperature increase even further to 1.5 degrees Celsius; and (2) Reducing global greenhouse gas emissions to zero between 2050 and 2100.

Two years have passed since COP21, and some countries have withdrawn from the agreement; however, it was also clarified that public awareness of global environmental issues is higher than ever around the world.

Better Future for the Planet Earth Vol. V is a collection of the lectures given by Blue Planet Prize laureates from 2012 to 2017 (the 21st – 25th Blue Planet Prize winners). We publish this book in the hope that their messages will prompt renewed commitment to solving global environmental issues.

I always try to keep in mind that we are not landlords but residents on the Earth. As past generations have preserved the Earth for us, we have the obligation to keep it safe and beautiful for the next generation.

It is a great joy for us to know that the Blue Planet Prize contributes to goal of ensuring that the next generation has a healthy planet.

December 2017
Kazuhiko Ishimura, President, Asahi Glass Foundation

The Earth is a a precious ecosystem, sustaining, every living thing.

At the Asahi Glass Foundation, we hope that people
around the world will work toward protecting our planet from destruction,
ensuring our treasured
inheritance continues to exist for future generations.

The Blue Planet Prize Trophy and Certificate

The Blue Planet Prize symbol, top left, represents our responsibility toward our fragile home. It is a symbol of hope for our children, of coexistence with and intimate connection to our environment. This design depicts the delicate balance and dynamic interrelationship of our world: the pristine blue sky and sea, people, nature and the universe.

Inaugural Blue Planet Prize Winners Announced at UNCED (1922)

Rio de Janeiro

Announcement of Winners

The winners of the inaugural Blue Planet Prize were announced during UNCED, which took place in Rio de Janeiro from June 3 to June 14, 1992. On June 4, the Foundation held a media reception at the Meridien Hotel in Rio de Janeiro. On June 8, the winners were announced in the Briefing Room of the Rio Centro Convention Center, the same room in which the United Nations held its UNCED press conference. The Foundation also sponsored a display booth spotlighting its activities at Global Forum '92, an event organized by a number of nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) and held during UNCED in Rio's Flamengo Park.

Jiro Kondo

Professor Jiro Kondo, President of the Science Council of Japan and a director of the Asahi Glass Foundation, makes a speech at the media reception.

Attending the awards announcement

Attending the awards announcement were, from left, Richard Sandbrook, executive director of the IIED; Maurice Strong, secretary-general of UNCED*; Dr. Saburo Okita, former minister of Foreign Affaires and a director of the Asahi Glass Foundation; Hideaki Yamashita, chairman of the Asahi Glass Foundation; Ambassador Masaki Seo; and Osamu Shiragami, senior executive director of the Asahi Glass Foundation.

Press conference at the Earth Summit in Rio de janeiro.

Media reception prior to the press conference on the announcement of the awards.

*UNCED = United Nations Conference on Environment and Development All personal titles refer to positions held at the time.

Blue Planet Prize Laureates since 1992

Year  Laureat Country
1992 Dr. Syukuro Manabe USA
International Institute for Environment and Development (IIED) Founded in UK
1993 Dr. Charles D. Keeling USA
IUCN-The World Conservation Union Headquartered in Switzerland
1994 Prof. Dr. Eugen Seibold Germany
Mr. Lester R. Brown USA
1995 Dr. Bert Bolin Sweden
Mr. Maurice F. Strong Canada
1996 Dr. Wallace S. Broecker USA
M.S. Swaminathan Research Foundation Founded in India
1997 Dr. James E. Lovelock UK
Conservation International (CI) Headquartered in Washington, D.C., USA
1998 Prof. Mikhail I. Budyko Russia
Mr. David R. Brower USA
1999 Dr. Paul R. Ehrlich USA
Prof. Qu Geping China
2000 Dr. Theo Colborn USA
Dr. Karl-Henrik Robèrt Sweden
2001 Lord (Robert) May of Oxford Australia
Dr. Norman Myers UK
2002 Professor Harold A. Mooney USA
Prof. J. Gustave Speth USA
2003 Dr. Gene E. Likens & Dr. F. Herbert Bormann USA
Dr. Vo Quy Vietnam
2004 Dr. Susan Solomon USA
Dr. Gro Harlem Brundtland Norway
2005 Prof. Sir Nicholas Shackleton UK
Dr. Gordon Hisashi Sato USA
2006 Dr. Akira Miyawaki Japan
Dr. Emil Salim Indonesia
2007 Professor Joseph L. Sax USA
Dr. Amory B. Lovins USA
2008 Dr. Claude Lorius France
Professor José Goldemberg Brazil
2009 Professor Hirofumi Uzawa Japan
Lord (Nicholas) Stern of Brentford UK
2010 Dr. James Hansen USA
Dr. Robert Watson UK
2011 Dr. Jane Lubchenco USA
Barefoot College Founded in India
2012 Professor William E. Rees & Dr. Mathis Wackernagel Canada & Switzerland
Dr. Thomas E. Lovejoy USA
2013 Dr. Taroh Matsuno Japan
Professor Daniel Sperling USA
2014 Prof. Herman Daly USA
Prof. Daniel H. Janzen & Instituto Nacional de Biodiversidad (INBio) USA & Founded in Costa Rica
2015 Professor Sir Partha Dasgupta FBA FRS UK
Professor Jeffrey D. Sachs USA
2016 Mr. Pavan Sukhdev India
Prof. Markus Borner Switzerland

Some Background on the Blue Planet Prize

Humankind has only one home, the Earth, and we all bear responsibility to leave it in a habitable condition for future generations. In recognition of those whose efforts help provide solutions for global environmental problems, the Foundation established the Blue Planet Prize, an annual international award presented to individuals and organizations that have made outstanding contributions toward that aim. The year the prize was first awarded, 1992, was the year that the world turned its attention to environmental issues at the Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro. In keeping with the spirit of that conference, the Foundation hopes to help raise awareness of and interest in environmental issues throughout the world while expressing its appreciation for the achievements of the winners.

Each year, the Foundation chooses two individuals or organizations whose pioneering achievements represent major contributions to sustainable development and to solving such environmental problems as climate change, global warming, acid rain, ozone layer depletion, ecosystem destruction in tropical rainforests, species extinction and desertification. The Foundation is also keen to recognize work in areas related to energy, food, population, waste treatment, recycling, as well as environmental management, ethics, philosophy and education. The work of the award winners must in some way contribute to the harmonious coexistence of people, society and the environment.

They should contribute to humankind's pool of scientific knowledge as well as to the realization of a global community that uses science and technology for the good of all. Candidate nominations are received from more than 120 countries worldwide. Living citizens of all nations, irrespective of gender, race or religion, are eligible. A short list of nominees is compiled by the Selection Committee. Final decisions are made by the Presentation Committee and nominees are approved by the Foundation's Board of Directors and Councilors.

The winners are presented with a certificate of merit, a commemorative trophy and a supplementary prize of 50 million yen at an awards ceremony. The ceremony takes place in Tokyo and is attended each year by members of the Japanese royal family, government officials, foreign diplomats, academics and researchers, as well as representatives from many fields of endeavor. On the day following the awards ceremony, the laureates present lectures on their work to an audience at the United Nations University in Tokyo. This lecture event is well attended by the general public, journalists, environmental specialists and academics from related fields.

The Blue Planet Prize was so named in the hope that our blue planet will be a shared possession capable of sustaining all life time far into the future. The Earth is a precious ecosystem, home to every living thing. At the Asahi Glass Foundation, we sincerely hope that people around the globe will work toward protecting our planet from environmental deterioration, ensuring that the natural environment continues to exist for future generations. We believe wholeheartedly that through the ingenuity and earnest efforts of humanity the serious environmental problems we now face will someday be solved.

Information on the laureates and their achievements is also available online on the Foundation's web site: http:///

Blue Planet Prize Selection Process

Key words


Anniversary Events

25th Anniversary Events of the Blue Planet Prize

+25 years Commemorative Conference of the Establishment of the Blue Planet Prize (September 8, 2017)

"From isolation to connection" - What we can do for a sustainable future (November 16, 2017)

20th Anniversary Events of the Blue Planet Prize

+25 years Commemorative Conference of the Establishment of the Blue Planet Prize

The Earth's Environment is at a Crossroads: The Time for Action is Now and Solutions Exist

The Asahi Glass Foundation hopes the commemorative event to contribute following accounts: Raise awareness of the society including young generations for pressing environmental issues, reviewing the past 25 years of the Prize history and considering the coming 25 years regarding global environmental issues.

Date: September 8, 2017
Venue: Ito International Research Center, The University of Tokyo
Organizer: The Asahi Glass Foundation
Supervisor: Dr. Hiroyuki Yoshikawa
(Special Counselor to the President, Japan Science and Technology Agency;
Former President, The University of Tokyo)

Joint Press Conference (September 7, 2017)
Announcing the Press Statement "The Earth's Environment is at a Crossroads. Solutions Exist. The Time for Action is Now."
Press Statement
Press Conference
Part I:Round-table Conference Participated by the Laureates and Young Folks
Conversation with students
Part II:Commemorative Lecture Session
Commemorative Lecture
Visual materials of the lecture
Dr. Robert Watson
Dr. Jane Lubchenco
Dr. Thomas E. Lovejoy
Panel Discussion
Messages from Blue Planet Prize Laureates
Mr. Tetsuji Ida: (Senior Staff Writer & Editorial Writer Environment, Energy and Development Kyodo News, Science News Desk))
Dr. Robert Watson: (2010 (19th) Blue Planet Prize Laureate, Chair of the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES), Former Chair of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC))
Dr. Jane Lubchenco: (2011 (20th) Blue Planet Prize Laureate, Professor of Oregon State University, Former Administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA))
Dr. Thomas E. Lovejoy : (2012 (21st) Blue Planet Prize Laureate, Professor of Environmental Science and Policy, George Mason University)
Mr. Hiroshi Ono: (Deputy Director General, Global Environment Affairs, Ministry of the Environment)
Ms. Junko Edahiro: (Professor, Tokyo City University, President of Institute for Studies in Happiness, Economy, and Society)
Mr. Shigeki Kobayashi: (Senior Researcher, Chubu Transportation Research Institute)
Mr. Takejiro Sueyoshi: (Special Advisor to The UNEP Finance Initiative)
Mr. Yasushi Hibi: (Representative Director of Conservation International Japan)

"From isolation to connection"
- What we can do for a sustainable future

Hardly a day goes by without us getting exposed to negative news about nature worlds such as extreme weather events, extinction of various species, water pollution, and air pollution.

While at the same time, not a few people find it very difficult to connect their daily lives with environmental problems.

However, it is imperative for us to have a shared perception that each one of us living on the earth is responsible for these problems.

We say so because a human is necessarily a creature who cannot live alone, and the natural world has provided everything that humans need to survive and thrive.
Also, we have never been aware of or appreciated for nature's gifts because we take it for granted that nature is always there to support us.

We held this symposium to understand human connections to the natural environment as well as to environmental problems, which could give us a clue on how we can contribute to the improvement of the problems.

Date: November 16, 2017
Venue: Elizabeth Rose Conference Hall 5F at the United Nations University
Organizer: The Asahi Glass Foundation、Conservation International Japan

Dr. Thomas E. Lovejoy: Professor of Environmental Science and Policy, George Mason University
[Genuine biodiversity designates that all the lifeforms can connect and support each other]
Mr. Pavan Sukhdev: UNEP Goodwill Ambassador, Founding Trustee of Green Indian States Trust (GIST)
[Planetary Connectedness and Systems Thinking for an Economy of Permanence]
Ms. Jennifer Morris: President Conservation International
[The relation between biodiversity and economy: connectivity with the Japanese society]
Panel Discussion
Ms. Junko Edahiro (Facilitator): Professor of the Faculty of Environmental Studies Tokyo City University, the representative of Japan for Sustainability
D.M. Michiko Imai: Climber and Doctor, Visiting Professor Tokyo University of Agriculture
Ms. Atsuko Suzuki: The Representative director, Environmental Business Agency
Ms. Akane Takada: Aleph Inc. Eco team
Ms. Misako Nakajima: Student from International Christian University

20th Anniversary Events of the Blue Planet Prize

20th Anniversary Events of the Blue Planet Prize
London conference at IIED (The creation of the UNEP paper)
London conference Day1 (2012/Feb/8)
London conference Day2 (2012/Feb/9)
London conference Day3 (2012/Feb/10)
The very first Press announcement of Environment and Development Challenges paper
Press conferences at Rio+20 (2012/Jun/17)
Press conferences at Rio+20
2012 Laureates Press conference
UNEP Paper (Environment and Development Challenges) announcement

Questionnaire on Environmental Problems and the Survival of Humankind

The review of the development of the Environmental Doomsday Clock for a quarter century

Introductory remarks

Since 1992, we have been surveying the sense of impending crisis over the degradation of the natural environment by addressing global environmental experts. We would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your continued support for the activities of the Asahi Glass Foundation. This chapter is designed to further respondents' understanding of the Questionnaire on the Environmental Problems and the Survival of Humankind survey by briefly describing its history and the changes in the research methods. It also aims to explain how the survey results may be interpreted and appreciated" We determine that we will further enhance the quality of the content in the years to come, and we are grateful if you wish to continue to respond the questionnaire as you did before.

Fig. 1 Changes in the Environmental Doomsday Clock (world average)

Fig. 1 Changes in the Environmental Doomsday Clock (world average)

1. Purpose of establishing the Questionnaire on Environmental Problems and the Survival of Humankind

We introduced the questionnaire on the occasion of creating the Blue Planet Prize in 1992. The purpose for introducing the questionnaire was to arouse further interest in global environmental issues among the public through a survey targeting world environmental experts. For more than a quarter of a century, although modestly, we have made a specific contribution to the enhancement of the world's environmental awareness. The total number of respondents to the questionnaire was about 1 thousand for the very first survey in 1992, but it quickly fell into the hundreds. Since 2010, we have earnestly increased exposures to the environmental experts, the number of responses has increased, and currently, we secure more than 2,000 respondents per year.

Fig. 2 Changes in the Number of Respondents (world)

Fig. 2 Changes in the Number of Respondents (world)

2. History of the evolution of the questionnaire

*The outline of the questionnaire

The questionnaire consists both of "ongoing questions," such as questions asking respondents to tell the "crisis time" of the Environmental Doomsday Clock and also of "nonrecurring questions" such as the particular environmental problems that have attracted attention in the fiscal year in which the survey is distributed. Today, we added some "ongoing questions" beside those focused on the "crisis time." These new questions constitute a type of fixed-point observation intending to report changes in the status quo of particular environmental situations.

A. The "crisis time" of the Environmental Doomsday Clock

In the first year of the survey (1992), we introduced a clock dial consisting of four quadrants representing a particular attitude toward environmental crisis and asked respondents to express their respective attitudes by indicating the appropriate time at a particular quadrant: the first quadrant (0: 01 to 3: 00 -> Barely Concerned), the second quadrant (3: 01 to 6: 00 -> Slightly Concerned), the third quadrant (6: 01 to 9: 00 -> Fairly Concerned), and the fourth quadrant (9: 01-12: 00 -> extremely Concerned) (see the diagram below).

Fig. 3 Diagram of the Doomsday Clock and its quadrons

Fig. 3  Diagram of the Doomsday Clock and its quadrons

The respondents selected and answered a specific time from the range of 00: 01 to 12: 00. We have averaged the individual "crisis times" that we received from the worldwide respondents and reported it as the "crisis time."
Since 2003, to infer the background of the respondents' logic of the determination of "crisis time," we have asked respondents to choose the three issues from the list of "concerned issues" about which they were most concerned (see the next paragraph for details) that we provide at the questionnaire. Then we asked respondents to rank the three items that most concerned them. Ultimately, we calculated each "crisis time" as a weighted average according to respondent's ranking.

B. An introduction to the Environmental Issues ("concerned issues") in Determining the Environmental Doomsday Clock Time

We introduced the so-called "concerned issues" in order to achieve a more qualitative association between the "concerned issues" and the "crisis time" humanity finds itself facing.
Since 2003, we have offered a list of "concerned issues" to support respondents' estimation of "crisis time." To create the list of "concerned issues," we selected environmental items such as climate change (8 items related to Agenda 21) and asked respondents to select the three items that most influenced their decision about "crisis time."
This reformation helped us to improve the interpretation of yearly fluctuations of "crisis time." (However, this measure still lacks information about how respondents rank the three selected items by importance.)

In 2011, the list of "concerned issues" was updated to 11 items with reference to the elements of Planetary Boundaries (Rockström et al. 2009 Ecology and Society 14 (2): 32). At the same time, to shed light on the decision-making processes of the respondents, we asked respondents to rank the top three items that they selected by the level of influence each had upon the "crisis time" that they estimated. Then, we weighted the "crisis times" of the top three items (1st: 50%, 2nd: 30%, 3rd place 20%) and calculated the weighted average of individual "crisis times" as the "crisis time" (see the diagram below).
This change of the determination process of "crisis time" offers us a much clearer understanding of respondents' motives as they determine what "crisis time" means to them and leads to a more quantitative overall definition of "crisis time." Furthermore, we calculated the "crisis time" for each "concerned issue." At the same time, we introduced a bubble graph as a powerful visual aid through which it became possible to precisely represent the trend of the world as a whole and also the more individual regional or country-level trends; it also helps to convey how the respondents see the current environmental situation facing the world (please refer to the bubble graphs below).

Fig. 4 The standard question asking about the "crisis time"

Fig. 4 The standard question asking about the "crisis time"

Fig. 5 Bubl Graph: "Crisis Times" correlated with "Concerned Issues" (world)

Fig. 5 Bubl Graph:  "Crisis Times" correlated with "Concerned Issues"  (world)

Fig. 6 Transition of "Crisis Times" /"Concerned Issues" 2012 – 2017 (world)

Fig. 6  Transition of  "Crisis Times" /"Concerned Issues" 2012 – 2017  (world)

Table 1 Regional distribution of "crisis times" correlated with "concerned issues

Table 1 Regional distribution of "crisis times" correlated with "concerned issues

As for the new set of "concerned issues," currently (2018) we offer climate change, biosphere integrity (biodiversity), change in terrestrial utilization (land use), biochemical flow (environmental pollution), water resource, population, food, lifestyle, and society/economy/and the environment. We chose those items related to the latest Planetary Boundaries thesis (Steffen et al. Science 13 Feb 2015 vol. 347, issue 6223). Furthermore, each "concerned issue" listed in the questionnaire is related to the relevant development goals of the SDGs.

Table 2 Environmental issues to be taken into account ("Concerned Issues)


C. "Ongoing and nonrecurring questions" of the Questionnaire

*Ongoing question item

Between 1993 and 2010, we added a special "ongoing question" pertaining to a set of environmentally important items, selected by us, from the goals of Agenda 21 and asked respondents about the yearly progress of each item. Since 2011, we have observed and reported transitions of environmental "crisis time" across generations.

Fig. 7 Shifts in the "crisis times" by Generation


*Nonrecurring question items

We formerly selected every year a number of nonrecurring question items that were appropriate to ecological concerns that had gathered particular attention in that year. We abolished this type of nonrecurring question in 2018. However, we will resurrect this if necessary and desired.

3. What comes next

Global environmental problems such as CO2 emissions require a prompt response from society as a whole. For this reason, arousing more people's attention to environmental issues has become a more important goal than ever. Increasing people's awareness about the earth's environment is paramount in the light of the objectives of this questionnaire, and we renew our determination to further increase the number of respondents by improving the quality of the survey contents.

Past Articles

Questionnaire A21-Year Summary

Questionnaire 15-Year Summary

Questionnaire 10-Year Summary

Questionnaire Five-Year Summary

About the Foundation & Afterword


The Asahi Glass Foundation strives to contribute to the creation of a society that can transmit the genuine wealth of human civilization by supporting advanced research in the fields of science and technology and by recognizing efforts to solve environmental issues that call for global solutions.


1. Research Grant Program

Grants are awarded to researchers at universities in Japan and in Thailand and Indonesia. To date, the Foundation has awarded ¥9.8 billion in research grants for approximately 7,900 projects.

2. Commendation Program

Awarding of the Blue Planet Prize, an international environmental award, and the annual survey on the global environment, have been conducted since 1992. Based on the results of the survey, the Environmental Doomsday Clock is reset every year.


The Asahi Glass Foundation was established in 1933 as the Asahi Foundation for Chemical Industry Promotion, to commemorate the 25th anniversary (in 1932) of the founding of Asahi Glass Co., Ltd. Over most of its first half-century, the Foundation focused primarily on fostering research in the field of applied chemistry.

In 1990, the foundation undertook an overall redesign of its programs, expanding the scope of its activities and establishing its commendation program. At the same time it was renamed the Asahi Glass Foundation. Since then, the activities of the foundation have focused on its grant-awarding and commendation programs.


1933 The Asahi Glass Co., Ltd. donated \500 thousand and established the Asahi Foundation for Chemical Industry Promotion.
1934 The Asahi Foundation for Chemical Industry Promotion recognized as a nonprofit organization and its basic endowment increased to \1 million.
The Foundation began providing research grants to university researchers in the field of applied chemistry.
1945 Last grants were awarded for the year prior to all activities being suspended at the end of World War II.
1955 Research grant program restarted.
1961 The Foundation changes its name to the Asahi Glass Foundation for Industrial Technology.
1982 The Foundation started a research grant program for Chulalongkorn University, Thailand.
1988 The Foundation started a research grant program for Institut Teknologi Bandung, Indonesia.
1990 To support the expansion of its activities, the Foundation made a full revision of its article of association and changes its name to the Asahi Glass Foundation.
1992 Awarding the Blue Planet Prize awards commenced.
Annual survey Questionnaire on Environmental Problems and the Survival of Humankind started. 
1997 The Foundation issued A Better Future for the Planet Earth, a publication commemorating the fifth anniversary of the Blue Planet Prize.
2002 Published Toward the Future of the Blue Planet -10-Year History of the Blue Planet Prize.
10th Anniversary commemorative lectures Toward the Future of the Blue Planet held.
2006 Special Round Table Conference on Global Environment Problems started.
2009 Published Our Vision: Conditions for Survival (in Japanese and English, successively in Chinese through 2011).
The Foundation transitioned into a Public Interest Incorporated Foundation.
2010 The Kondo Grant, an environmental research grant program commenced.
Published Conditions for Survival - Toward a Solar Energy-Based Society Full of Vibrant Life (in Japanese and English) and its popular edition containing the abstract summary in Japanese.
2011 Publication of Conditions for Survival in other languages (Chinese and Korean in 2011, and Arabic in 2012) started.
Symposium Conditions for Survival held.
2012 The Foundation started research grant program for King Mongkut's University of Technology Thonburi, Thailand.
The Blue Planet Prize laureates jointly presented a paper titled Environment and Development Challenges: The Imperative to Act.
Published Environment and Development Challenges: The Imperative to Act.
2017 +25 years commemorative conference of the establishment of The Blue Planet Prize held.

Financial Information

Statements of Changes in Financial Position (Million Yen)

FY2012 FY2013 FY2014 FY2015 FY2016
Basic endowment 23,002 21,449 25,722 21,196 29,299
Special & other assets 2,752 2,840 3,173 2,902 3,608
Total (Net Worth) 25,754 24,290 28,894 24,097 32,906


A Quest for Securing the Blue Planet

Directors and Councillors

February, 2018


Kazuhiko Ishimura Chairman & Representative Director, Asahi Glass Co., Ltd.
Senior Executive Director
Kunihiko Adachi Former Deputy General Manager, Technology Office of Glass Company, Asahi Glass Co., Ltd.
Yoshiki Chujo Professor, Kyoto University
Yoshihiro Hayashi President/ Director General, National Museum of Nature and Science; Professor Emeritus, The University of Tokyo
Kimihiko Hirao Director, RIKEN Advanced Institute for Computational Science; Former Executive Vice President, The University of Tokyo
Hiroshi Ishiwara Professor Emeritus, Tokyo Institute of Technology
Tisato Kajiyama Chairman, Board of Trustees, and President Fukuoka Women's University; Professor Emeritus, Former President, Kyushu University
Shinichi Kawakami Exective Offiser, General Manager, General Affairs Division Asahi Glass Co.,Ltd.
Yukiharu Kodama President, The Mechanical Social Systems Foundation; Former Administrative Vice-minister of International Trade and Industry
Takamitsu Kumasaka Chairman & CEO, THE SANKEI SHIMBUN
Keisuke Kutira Former President, Seikei University
Masayoshi Mishina Professor, Ritsumeikan University; Professor Emeritus, The University of Tokyo
Hideo Miyahara Professor Emeritus, former President, Osaka University;
Akio Morishima Director General, Japan Environment Association; Professor Emeritus, Nagoya University
Ryoji Noyori Director-General, Center for Research and Development Strategy, Japan Science and Technology Agency
Kenjiro Omura Professor Emeritus, University of Tsukuba
Takuya Shimamura Member of the Board, President & CEO, Asahi Glass Co., Ltd.
Sawako Shirahase Professor, The University of Tokyo
Katsuhiko Shirai Honorary Advisor, Waseda University
Hiroshi Yoshikawa Professor, Rissho University; Professor Emeritus, The University of Tokyo
Principal Fellow, Japan Science and Technology Agency; 
Hiroyuki Yoshikawa Member of Japan Academy; Former President, Science Council of Japan;
Former President, The University of Tokyo
Katsunori Nagayasu Senior Advisor, The Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ, Ltd.. 
Takashi Terashima Former Corporate Auditor, Asahi Glass Co., Ltd.
Tatsuo Wakabayashi Chairman, Mitsubishi UFJ Trust and Banking Corporation


The Blue Planet Prize was established in 1992, the year of the Rio de Janeiro Earth Summit, and celebrated its 25th year in 2017.

Over these past 25 years, awareness around the world about global environmental issues has increased, and the ranking of countries influencing the global environment has also changed with China becoming the world’s largest emitter of carbon dioxide.

While seeking international agreement to preserve the global environment, it has deteriorated. It’s true that we could not move quickly because of the time it takes to coordinate among countries, but this does not mean that we are completely lost, as Professor Robert Watson told us at the 25th anniversary symposium held on September 8, 2017.

Many countries recognized the critical phase of the global environment, which prompted them to sign the Paris Agreement in 2015. Although within two years, the United States stated its intention to withdraw from the agreement, all of the other signatories, including China, the largest carbon dioxide emitter, have remained.

Even in the United States, some states and cities made the announcement that they would follow the agreement. This shows that awareness about the global environmental issues has been shared beyond the boundaries of international politics.

Over the past 25 years, people around the world have cooperated in solving global environmental issues as individuals.

The Asahi Glass Foundation is also working harder in the hope that the Blue Planet Prize will contribute to such activities to save the global environment.

Kunihiko Adachi
Senior Executive Director,
Asahi Glass Foundation