• Biocatalysis;
  • Bioprocessing;
  • Sustainable development


Human activities have profound impacts on the world's environment as well as on the quality of life. There is a growing awareness that industrial sustainability is a key means of bringing about a reduction of environmental impacts and an improvement of the quality of our life. The integration of biotechnology into chemical manufacturing has the potential to reduce material and energy consumption as well as the emission of substances hazardous to health and the environment. In 2000, the Japanese government launched a new research and development project “Development of a Technological Infrastructure for Industrial Bioprocesses”. This national project aimed at creating a new biotechnological basis for making a contribution to lowering energy consumption in production, primarily in chemical production, expanded use of renewable biomass resources, and a decrease of waste and pollution. This paper describes an overview of this national project, focusing on the development of basic technologies for environmentally friendly industrial bioprocesses.