Transforming Our Society: Low Carbon, Coexistence with Nature, and Sound Material Cycle

  • Hidefumi Imura


This chapter discusses the goals and ways of transforming our society toward a low-carbon society. Technological progress since the Industrial Revolution has been remarkable, but it is fossil fuels that were the driving force behind economic growth. The automobile was a phenomenon of the fossil fuel civilization, which is a high-carbon society. A low-carbon society is one that has shifted away from its dependence on fossil fuels. During the first half of this century, economic growth will be most remarkable in emerging economies such as China and India, and some are strongly concerned about the pressures of resource demand in these countries. On the other hand, Japan is already experiencing low birthrates and the aging of society. If the world population growth rate slows after the middle of this century, the pressure on the environment may quickly decline. What Japan is experiencing now is already proof of that. Biotechnology is likely to be a critical technology, whether it be for food, biofuels, or environmental remediation. In the end, we must aim simultaneously for three goals: a low-carbon society, coexistence with nature, and a sound material cycle.


Fossil Fuel Internal Combustion Engine Industrial Revolution Natural Capital Wood Charcoal 
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Copyright information

© Springer Japan 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hidefumi Imura
    • 1
  1. 1.Yokohama City UniversityYokohamaJapan

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