Water & Solutions Forum – Science, Processing and Maintenance



Water Use and Environment in Japan – Water Use




Water use in Japan

Current status of water use

 Japan’s water use record (based on the amount of water intake) in 2011 was about 80.9 billion m3/year. By use, urban water was about 26.5 billion m3 (living water : about 15.2 billion m3, industrial water : about 11.3 billion m3), and about 54.4 billion m3 for agricultural water (not including the amount of water used for public utilities, snow removal, etc.).

図1 水利用の形態と区分
Figure 1 Water usage forms and categories

図2 全国の水使用量


生活用水の一人一日当たり使用量は水洗便所の普及などの生活様式の変化に伴い1965年から2000年までの間に約2倍に増加し、この間の人口の増加や経 済活動の拡大とあいまって生活用水の使用量は約3倍に増加したが、1998年頃をピークに緩やかに減少傾向になっている。

Domestic water

 Water used at home is called household water, and water used in offices, hotels, restaurants, etc. is called city activity water, and these are collectively called domestic water.
 The daily consumption of domestic water doubled between 1965 and 2000 due to changes in lifestyle such as the spread of flush toilets, and this was combined with the increase in population and economic activities during this period. As a result, the amount of domestic water used has tripled, but has been declining gradually since 1998 when it peaked.
 The majority of household water is used for cleaning purposes, including toilets (about 28%), baths (about 24%), cooking (about 23%), and washing (about 16%).

図3 生活用水使用量の推移

図4 家庭用水の内訳



Industrial water

 Industrial water is water that is supplied to industrial activities such as manufacturing, and is used for raw materials, product treatment / cleaning, boilers, cooling, etc.. The amount of water used includes the amount of water that has been used once and is reused. The ratio of the amount of water that is used for recovery is called the recovery rate.
 The amount of industrial water used increased about 3 times from 1965 to 2000, but the amount of water that needs to be newly taken from rivers (called the supply amount) due to the progress of recovery and utilization. Has been gradually decreasing since its peak in 1973.
 In 2011, the amount of industrial water used (establishments with three or more employees) was about 46.5 billion m3/year, but the amount of fresh water that was newly taken in was 11.3 billion m3, and the recovery rate was 76%.

図5 工業用水使用量等の推移



Agricultural water

 Agricultural water is roughly divided into paddy field irrigation, upland field irrigation, and livestock. The amount of agricultural water has been decreasing in recent years.
 The water flowing through the agricultural irrigation facilities plays a multifaceted role such as conservation of the rural environment, washing of agricultural products and equipment, water for ecosystem preservation, and hydrophilic water.

図6 日本の農業用水の推移 [国土交通省・website-水資源の利用状況, 2020]
Figure 6 Changes in Japan’s agricultural water [Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism website-Water resource usage status, 2020]

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