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Updated on September 7, 2016

Guiding Principles for Biodiversity Conservation Initiatives and Case Examples

Guiding Principles for Conservation Initiatives

Sony business sites are intricately connected with the natural environment and ecosystems that surround them. Sony introduced the Green Star Program in April 2011 as a framework for assessing the green performance of business sites and advancing green measures, as well as to advance initiatives for biodiversity conservation. (Click here for more details on "The Green Star Program")

Under the Green Star Program, Sony has identified concrete measures that are necessary for advancing biodiversity conservation initiatives at business sites and in surrounding communities, and manage land use, green spaces, and revegetation in a way that accounts for biodiversity. The measures are organized so that business sites can self-assess their progress, as shown in the table below. This framework enables business sites to take active steps toward enriching biodiversity in ways that are tailored to their environment, and to identify their progress and issues they need to address.
Consideration Points for Biodiversity in the Green Star Program
Measures
Education and awareness
  • Conduct education, seminars, and lectures concerning biodiversity
  • Conduct nature observation programs
Investigation
  • Monitor living things
  • Give consideration to the ecological services related to site and business
  • Grasp status of land use
  • Give consideration to local biodiversity preservation plans
Improve ecosystem
  • Improvement of environment for living things
  • Give consideration to ecological network and green corridor
  • Give consideration to three-dimensional vegetation
  • Adoption of local species
Measures against bad effects
  • Measures against alien species
  • Give consideration to bad effects on ecosystems caused by emissions
Protection and
conservation of
ecosystem services
  • Grasp and conserve endangered species
  • Conserve a wildlife sanctuary
  • Groundwater recharge
Management
  • Ensure the appropriate management and use of chemical substances
  • Ensure the effective use of organic resources
  • Promote procurement that leads to biodiversity
Assessment
  • Restore, improve, or offset for the ecosystem.
  • Performing environmental assessments that include biodiversity assessments
Cooperation with stakeholders
  • Cooperation with stakeholders
  • Support for organizations that engage in biodiversity conservation activities
Sony has established a Basic Policy on Biodiversity Conservation, pledging its commitment to help achieve the Aichi Biodiversity Targets by conserving natural capital and biodiversity through the entire life cycle. Sony communicates the importance of pursuing initiatives under the Green Star Program to employees, as a way to help achieve the twenty Aichi Biodiversity Targets, establishing a shared recognition of the significance of these initiatives from which to take action.
Learn more about the Aichi Biodiversity Targets (source: Ministry of the Environment, Japan)

Education and Awareness

Promoting initiatives for biodiversity conservation starts with getting people in diverse positions to better recognize and understand the value of biodiversity. Sony broadly engages in biodiversity education and awareness, with the understanding that awareness leads to conservation. These initiatives will enable Sony to help achieve Target 1 "Awareness increased" of the Aichi Biodiversity Targets.

Wow! Wow! Biodiversity Project (Japan)


  • Nature walk to observe the Japanese giant flying squirrel
Since May 2015, Sony has been working in partnership with The Nature Conservation Society of Japan, an environmental NGO, to launch and operate the Wow! Wow! Biodiversity Project aimed at promoting biodiversity conservation and raising awareness. The project name is inspired by the excitement and wonder that is elicited by the mysteries of nature. The project organizes events for the general public to experience nature, and uses social media as a platform to share information about living plants and organisms, conveying the wonders of nature to a broad audience as a way to promote biodiversity conservation.
Learn more about the Wow! Wow! Biodiversity Project at the "Sony and the Environment" website
(Japanese only)

Children's Drawing Contest (China)


  • A winning submission from 2015
Since 2013, Sony Electronics (Wuxi) Co., Ltd. has been collaborating with construction, environmental protection, and education officials in the Wuxi New District, to organize an annual children's drawing contest for local elementary and junior high school students and employees' children, centering on themes related to biodiversity conservation. For the 2015 contest, children were invited to submit drawings inspired by the theme of "My Green Town." Prizes were awarded to seventy-seven students, helping to raise awareness about the environment by encouraging children to take a renewed look at the natural environment around them.

Investigation

As part of their environmental conservation activities, various Sony sites survey and monitor the natural habitats located on their grounds and in the surrounding areas. They then reflect the results of these studies in conservation plans, allowing them to carry out activities in consideration of the local ecosystem. The disclosure of the survey results will enable Sony to help achieve Target 19 "Knowledge improved, shared and applied" of the Aichi Biodiversity Targets.

Monitoring Ecosystems Surrounding Offices in Japan


  • A bird-monitoring study in process
In partnership with The Nature Conservation Society of Japan, Sony is monitoring bird populations in green spaces around Sony City Osaki building, through fixed-point observations. The collected data is being used to advance conservation initiatives in balance with the surrounding community and ecosystems.

Observing the Neighboring Natural Habitat from Sony's Office Building in South Korea


  • The video camera is set up for fixed-point observations
In South Korea, Sony is conducting fixed-point observations of wildlife inhabiting a river next to its office building. Using a video camera equipped with a telephoto lens, the set-up captures the river habitat 24 hours per day through an office window. These images are shown on various displays in the office, helping raise employees' awareness of local biodiversity.

Improve ecosystem

Sony works to maintain a natural environment that is the appropriate place for the wildlife to inhabit. Accordingly, we actively plant local varieties of trees and carry out other activities intended to preserve the environment in consideration of local ecosystems. These initiatives are enabling Sony to help achieve Targets 5 "Habitat loss halved or reduced" and 10 "Pressures on vulnerable ecosystems reduced" of the Aichi Biodiversity Targets.

Conserving Green Spaces at Business Sites


  • Maintaining humus with leaves and prunings at Sony Digital Products (Wuxi) Co., Ltd.
Sony business sites in Japan and other countries conduct environmental maintenance in their green spaces that account for biodiversity, such as installing birdhouses and maintaining humus with organic matter (leaves and prunings). Business sites that are engaged in these initiatives in Japan include the Atsugi and Shonan Technology Centers of Sony Corporation, Sony City Osaki, and Sony Global Manufacturing & Operations Corporation (at the Sony Forest of the Kohda Site), as well as Sony Digital Products (Wuxi) Co., Ltd. in China.
For details on measures relating to the activities at Kohda Site, please refer to: Feature: "Sony Forest" Hosts a Blossoming Ecosystem.

Participating in Local Nature Conservation Activities in the United Kingdom


  • Nature conservation activities
In the United Kingdom, employees of Sony DADC Corporation have joined nature conservation activities organized by Horsham Green Gym and Friends of Firs Farm Park, a local volunteer group. The activities have included tree-planting and clearing weeds in a country park near the company's site, as well as restoring local ponds. Whilst the Friends of Firs Farm Park are transforming an area into wetlands, wildflower meadows, planting trees and restoring a cut-off watercourse.

Restoring Forests and Coral Reefs in Thailand


  • Planting coral fragments
In an effort to restore the diminishing mangrove forests in Thailand, Sony Technology (Thailand) Co., Ltd. and Sony Device Technology (Thailand) Co., Ltd. have jointly planted a total of 2,400 mangrove trees by the end of fiscal 14. In fiscal 15, Sony Device Technology (Thailand) planted 200 perennial plants to conserve biodiversity at a local park. Sony Technology (Thailand) started the activity of restoring coral reefs from fiscal 14 and they planted 500 coral larvae colonies by the end of fiscal 15.

Measures against bad effects

The Sony Group has been taking measures to remove non-native species that negatively affect local ecosystems. Furthermore, the Group's sites work to limit any harmful effects on local ecosystems by using only appropriate amounts of agricultural chemicals and chemical fertilizers at their green spaces in order to prevent soil pollution and the buildup of excessive nutrients in the soil. These initiatives are enabling Sony to help achieve Targets 8 "Pollution reduced", 9 "Invasive alien species prevented and controlled", and 12 "Extinction prevented" of the Aichi Biodiversity Targets.

Removing Invasive Species of Plants in China


  • Employees removed water hyacinth, an invasive aquatic plant
Sony Precision Devices (Huizhou) Co., Ltd. has been carrying out an initiative for removing invasive species since 2010. In cooperation with the city of Huizhou's water and environmental hygiene department, the company's employees led efforts to remove water hyacinth (eichhornia crassipes), a non-native aquatic plant, from a local river in June 2014.

Protection and Conservation of Ecosystem Services

Sony is working to conserve ecosystem services such as groundwater recharging, as well as identify and protect threatened species, and protect wildlife and flora. These initiatives are enabling Sony to help achieve Targets 11 "Protected areas improved" and 14 "Ecosystems and essential services safeguarded" of the Aichi Biodiversity Targets.
For more details, please refer to "Feature: Working on Groundwater Recharge Projects."

Activities to Protect the Harpy Eagle in Panama


  • The harpy eagle
Based in Panama, Sony Inter-American, S.A. has been carrying out activities for protecting the harpy eagle (Harpia harpyja), which, while recognized as the national bird of Panama, is also designated as an endangered species. Since 1998, the company has been sponsoring the Harpy Eagle Center, a facility that promotes protection activities. In 2008, it provided the center with several Sony BRAVIA™ LCD televisions that have been combined into a large wall-mounted screen. In 2016, the wall-mounted screen was replaced by a 4K 84" Sony BRAVIA™ LCD television and Sony Home Theater System to show high-definition videos in an effort to raise awareness among visitors of the importance of efforts to protect the harpy eagle.

Firefly Protection Project in Japan


  • A firefly raised by the project
Sony Global Manufacturing & Operations Corporation's Kosai Site in Japan has been implementing a project to revitalize the firefly habitat in cooperation with the local government. Fireflies were previously abundant in the woodland area neighboring the Kosai Site, but their numbers have been dwindling in recent years. In response, the company has begun maintaining the woodlands and raising firefly larvae to restock the population.

Helping Ensure That Endangered Loggerhead Turtles Can Spawn in Japan


  • Recently hatched loggerhead sea turtle
For over 20 years, the Kunisaki Satellite office within the Oita Technology Center of Sony Semiconductor Manufacturing Corporation has been actively involved in shore clean-up activities at the nearby Kurotsuzaki beach. Thanks to these efforts, loggerhead sea turtles, which have been designated as an endangered species, returned to the beach in 2009 to spawn for the first time in decades, and they have been observed spawning each year since then. In addition to shore clean-up activities, the Kunisaki Satellite office is involved in the incubation of eggs laid by loggerhead sea turtles.

Management

Sony works to ensure that chemical substances are properly managed, organic resources are effectively utilized, and the items it procures have been produced with biodiversity in mind. These initiatives will enable Sony to help achieve Target 4 "Sustainable consumption and production" of the Aichi Biodiversity Targets.

Converting Food Waste into Biogas and Organic Fertilizer in Thailand


  • The biogas facility
Sony Technology (Thailand) Co., Ltd. is located in Chon Buri and in 2010 became one of the first Sony sites worldwide to have installed a biogas facility. Instead of sending it to a landfill, this facility has helped to turn food waste into LP gas which can be used for cooking. In addition, the leftover food waste (compost) is used as organic fertilizer to grow plants and vegetables at the site, thus eliminating the use of chemical fertilizers. Some of the organic fertilizers produced by the facility are being donated for public use.

Environmentally Preferable Paper Purchasing

Recognizing that paper resources are finite, Sony strives to use paper in an environmentally responsible manner, and it has established a related purchasing policy for paper and printed materials. Accordingly, Sony makes a point of purchasing environmentally preferable paper, such a recycled paper and forest-certified paper.
For more information about Sony's policies related to paper and printed materials, please refer to "Policy on Paper Resources"

Cooperation with stakeholders

With a view to make its initiatives to protect biodiversity even more effective, the Sony Group seeks the opinions of related experts, NGOs, and other stakeholders while carrying out environmental conservation activities. For example, Sony works with research organizations when conducting studies and nature conservation groups when becoming involved in conservation activities. It also cooperates with governments and NGOs when maintaining the natural environment. In addition, Sony provides support and assistance to organizations involved in protecting biodiversity.

Sony Group companies in North America participate in a project that supports a wildlife refuge in New York City, led by the local NGO New York Cares.
For more information, please refer to the "Initiatives" section of the "Sony and the Environment" website.

In Japan, employees of Sony Network Communications Inc. have been working together with local residents of the city of Saku in Nagano Prefecture in activities for preserving the So-net Forest.
For more information, please refer to the "Initiatives" section of the "Sony and the Environment" website (Japanese only).

Sony provides support for WWF Japan's Forest Conservation in Sumatra project in Indonesia.
For more information, please refer to the "Project for Forest Conservation in Sumatra" section under "CSR/Environment" at the Sony website.
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