EIA Country Report for Japan

Legal Framework
State, Country or Province: 
Japan
EIA law: 
Environmental Impact Assessment Law, Law No. 81 of 1997
EIA Procedure
Projects Requiring EIA: 
Government projects
Projects Requiring EIA: 
Private projects
Abridged Assessments: 
No
Best Practices in Lieu of EIA: 
No
Who Conducts Screening: 
Government
Who Conducts Screening Detail: 
Screening is conducted for "class 2" projects. An EIA is automatically required for class 1 projects. EIA Law, Art. 4
Criteria for Screening: 
List or appendix of project or activity types
Criteria for Screening: 
Proposed project or activity may cause significant environmental impact
Criteria for Screening Detail: 
The screening judgement is made by the authorizing agency in accordance with the judgment criteria. In making the judgment, opinions from the prefectural governor who is well-acquainted with the local situation should be taken into consideration. EIA Law, Art. 4; see also MoE Publication, "EIA in Japan"
Who Prepares EIA: 
Project Proponent (with or without contractor)
Who Pays for EIA: 
Project Proponent
EIA Contractor Qualifications: 
No
Conflict of Interest: 
No
Terms of Reference (TOR): 
Yes
Terms of Reference Detail: 
See responses pertaining to "scoping"
Days for Decisionmaker Review: 
210
Automatic Approval: 
No
Authority to Impose Conditions: 
Yes
Authority to Impose Conditions Details: 
Conditions may be attached to the license or other required approval. EIA Law, Art. 33(2).
Expiry of Decision: 
Indefinite
Financial Assurances or Bond: 
No
EIA Content
Range of Alternatives Detail: 
The content of an EIA is determined by specific ministerial regulations for each sector.
No Action Alternative Detail: 
The content of an EIA is determined by specific ministerial regulations for each sector.
Type(s) of Impact Analysis: 
Direct environmental impacts
Mitigation: 
Yes
Mitigation Detail: 
The draft EIS shall include measures for protecting the environment, including details regarding how such measures were developed. EIA law Art. 14(7)(b).
Monitoring Plans: 
No
Access to Information
Public Notice of Draft EIA: 
Yes
Draft EIA Available: 
Yes
Draft EIA Available Detail: 
The proponent, for the purpose of acquiring comments, shall announce that the draft EIA has been prepared and make the EIA available for inspection. EIA Law, Art. 16.
Draft EIA Locations: 
Other
Public Notice of Final EIA: 
Yes
Public Notice of Final EIA Detail: 
The proponent shall make public the fact that an EIS and other items have been prepared, and, for a period of one month from the date of such publication, shall make available for public review in the related area the EIS, the summary, and other related information. EIA Law, Art. 27
Final EIA Available: 
Yes
Final EIA Available Detail: 
The proponent shall make public the fact that an EIS and other items have been prepared, and, for a period of one month from the date of such publication, shall make available for public review in the related area the EIS, the summary, and other related information. EIA Law, Art. 27
Final EIA Locations: 
Other
Public Participation
Public Scoping: 
Yes
Public Scoping Detail: 
The proponent shall prepare a scoping document concerning the environmental impact assessment. EIA Law, Art. 5. A person who has comments, from the standpoint of protecting the environment, regarding a scoping document may submit such comments to the proponent during a period that shall commence on the date that the document becomes known to the public and that shall end two weeks after the day following the termination of the period during which the statement is to be available for public review.
Public Participation Opportunities: 
Scoping
Public Participation Opportunities: 
Review of draft EIA
Public Participation Opportunities: 
Public meetings and/or public hearings
Public Participation Opportunities: 
Review of final EIA
Public Meetings: 
Yes
Public Meetings Detail: 
"[T]he proponent shall hold explanatory meetings to make the public aware of the contents of the draft EIS. . . in the related area during the period of public review." EIA Law, Art. 17.
Public Input at Meeting: 
No
Public Input at Meeting Detail: 
"[T]he proponent shall hold explanatory meetings to make the public aware of the contents of the draft EIS. . . in the related area during the period of public review." EIA Law, Art. 17. The EIA Law does not specify whether members of the public are permitted to speak or provide comments at the public meeting.
Criteria to Hold Public Meeting: 
Public meeting and/or hearing is automatically required
Days for Public to Review Draft EIA: 
30
Days for Public to Review Final EIA: 
30
Public Comments on Draft EIA: 
Yes
Public Comments on Draft EIA Detail: 
"[T]he proponent, for the purpose of acquiring comments, from the standpoint of protecting the environment, regarding the results of the environmental impact assessment relating to the draft EIS . . . shall publicly announce that the draft EIS and other items have been prepared in accordance with said regulation of the Prime Minister's Office, and shall make the draft EIS and the summary available for public review in the related area for one month from the date of the aforementioned public announcement." EIA Law, Art. 16. "Anyone who has comments, from the standpoint of protecting the environment, regarding a draft EIS may express such comments. . . ." EIA Law, Art. 18
Public Comments on Final EIA: 
Yes
Response to Public Comments: 
Yes
Response to Public Comments Detail: 
Comments regarding the scoping document must be addressed in the draft EIA. EIA Law, Art. 14(1). The proponent shall provide a document containing an outline of all comments received on the draft EIA and the proponent's views regarding such comments. EIA Law, Art. 19. The proponent shall address public comments concerning the draft EIA in the final EIA. EIA Law, Art. 21(2).
Facilitation of Public Participation: 
No
Judicial Review/Enforcement
Citizen Administrative Review: 
No
Citizen Judicial Review: 
No
   Updated 26 Mar, 2012