This paper takes general view of the history of global environmental problems. A UN human environment conference was held in Stockholm in 1972, at which the human environment declaration and an action plan were adopted. The most important among the results of the Stockholm Conference were the treaty on international transactions of wild animal and plant species feared of extinction in the 1970's, the international treaty on prevention of pollution caused by ocean vessels, and the treaty on prevention of ocean pollution caused by dumping of wastes and other materials. Also adopted in the 1970's include the action plan to prevent desertification, the action plan on the world population, and the world weather plan. The UN Nairobi Conference in 1982 has sounded the alarm on the delay in tackling with the facing problems and the progress of aggravation in the global environment. In 1987, the ozone layer protection protocol was adopted. The earth summit at Rio de Janeiro in 1992 adopted the Agenda 21, with which the participating nations, autonomous bodies, and civil organizations have prepared their own Agenda 21, and are now about to begin challenging the global environmental problems. 7 refs., 4 tabs.