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Program Description Division of GeoEnvironmental Science


What is the study of Geoenvironmental Science?

What is the study of Geoenvironmental Science The Earth’s integrated system comprising its atmosphere, hydrosphere, and biosphere is driven by the energy of solar radiation just as we are. Even the system of the solid Earth (lithosphere) is driven by the decaying energy of radioactive elements in the Earth. The boundary region between these four spheres is called the Geosphere; these four spheres interact through the circulation of energy and materials. A huge variety of episodes has occurred and evolved in the Geosphere during Earth’s long history. We human beings are the newest interesting product of this sphere.


What is the study of Geoenvironmental Science Our Department of Geoenvironmental Science is pursuing investigations of the changes that occurred in the past, present, and future of the Geosphere’s environment using ancient rocks and sediments examined with techniques of field-work, laboratory experiments, and theoretical modeling, which cannot be fully understood merely using today’s observational research. We hold to the perspective that Earth’s lithosphere provides us a wealth of information as snapshots of the evolving Geosphere. Our Department is also coming to a better understanding of the Earth’s environmental systems because current human activities are having serious consequences on the Earth’s environment.

Studies include examination of the various fields described below.

  • Plate tectonics
  • Earthquake, geodynamics and their underlying nonlinear physics
  • Planetary science with mechanical and electromagnetic properties of rocks and meteorites
  • Material cycle of the ground-sphere, and environmental interactions between the atmosphere, the ocean and the land area
  • Collision by meteorite, and resulted massive extinction of life
  • Creation mechanisms of various landforms
  • Paleobiology
  • Waterfront ecology
  • Formation of localization
  • Association of human activities with the geosphere environment
Especially in the field of Global Environment, a key aspect of research work is concentration on promoting the Integrated Ocean Drilling Program using the newest type of deep-sea drilling vessel: “Chikyu.” We are researching environmental variations in ocean areas as well as land areas in an integrated fashion including marine environment changes that have been occurring since 150 million years ago. The high-resolution investigation of the shallow sea environmental variations particularly addresses the corals there, and examines environmental variations in inland areas by drilling at the bottom of Lake Baikal and Lake Khubsugul.

Next step after graduation

About 80% of the students who graduate from the Department of Geoenvironmental Science enter graduate school. About half of the students who acquire a Master’s degree in the first half of the doctoral program advance into the second half of the Doctoral program to continue their associated research work necessary to receive the degree of Doctor.


Those students who graduate from the undergraduate program or finish the master course of the graduate school are working and playing an important role out in society, utilizing their specialties for petroleum-related development and other occupations as consultants for geological and environmental matters, teachers of primary school up to high school, or curators, or working for government offices.


Some students who complete the second half of the doctoral program are continuing their research work at a university or a national or public organization.