Factors Affecting Environmental Evaluation on Lake Biwa Basin

Author(s): Naoko Hirayama
Email (s): hirayama.n@ses.usp.ac.jp
Institution or organization of origin: The University of Shiga Prefecture
Country: Japan


Lake Biwa is valuable from multiple viewpoints: it provides the water supply for approximately 14.5 million residents in the Kinki region, including agricultural and industrial water, but also supports a rich ecosystem, distinct culture, and scenic landscapes. However, Lake Biwa has various issues such as a decrease in catch, invasion of foreign fishes and plants, and hypoxia at the bottom of the lake. As the problems of Lake Biwa and people’s values are diversifying, it is necessary to take individual values into consideration in the lake conservation policy. The residents’ assessment may differ from the evaluation by environmental measurements or expert evaluations. Therefore, it is necessary to grasp the factors that influence residents’ assessments. This study aimed to clarify the factors affecting environmental evaluation on the Lake Biwa basin. I conducted a questionnaire survey for residents and analyzed 1102 responses by covariance structure model. The essence of this research is expected to provide reference content to influence future preservation policies in the Lake Biwa basin. As a result, (i) residents who have a strong attachment to Lake Biwa or who have a lot of information sources about lake are more interested in lake, and those residents tend to have a higher evaluation of water quality and ecosystem, (ii) other residents with a lots information sources about lake have a high level of knowledge, and those residents evaluated the water quality as good. (ⅲ) In only the Ado-River basin, residents with higher interest evaluated ecosystems and water quality as good.

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