Journal of Oceanography, Vol. 58 (No. 1), pp. 93-107, 2002Review
Center for Marine Environmental Studies, Ehime University, Bunkyo 3, Matsuyama 790-8577, Japan
(Received 14 May 2001; in revised form 1 September 2001; accepted 5 September 2001)
Abstract: The Seto Inland Sea is a representative coastal sea in Japan with a complicated geometry and thus a variety of marine environments. This sea is, at the same time, one of the most industrialized areas in Japan, and its marine environment has been significantly affected by the anthropogenic impacts over the last four decades. The wide range of marine environments in this sea and the serious environmental issues resulting from these impacts have attracted the attention of Japanese coastal oceanographers. It is believed that the nature and scope of these studies might be an example of the progress of Japanese coastal oceanography. The historical changes in the Seto Inland Sea environment in the last four decades are briefly summarized, and the progress in the studies of the Seto Inland Sea is reviewed with reference to historical changes. Some recent research topics and activities are also mentioned.