Since 1967 industrial pollution in Kitakyushu City during the past several decades has been drastically improved through organised efforts among local government industries, universities and the public.
Air and water pollution had reached dangerous levels requiring the City government to strengthen control, monitoring and investment for sewerage and industrial clean-up. Dredging of hazardous harbour sediments was performed with cost- sharing by industrial companies. Urban parks have been expanded by city government and industry.
Kitakyushu City won the Japan Environment Agency Award in a "star watch" contest in 1987, which gave evidence of the revival of clean air in the city. The city also won the "UNCED Local Government Honours" in June 1992, in special recognition of its achievements in overcoming its severe environmental pollution and its active efforts in international environmental cooperation by making use of the experience.