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Updated on August 23, 2017

Guiding Principles for Biodiversity Conservation Initiatives and Case Examples

Guiding Principles for Conservation Initiatives

Sony has established a Basic Policy on Biodiversity Conservation, pledging its commitment to help achieve the twenty Aichi Biodiversity Targets by conserving natural capital and biodiversity through the entire product life cycle.

Sony business sites are intricately connected with the natural environment and ecosystems that surround them. In light of this, Sony is focused on helping to achieve the Aichi Biodiversity Targets by promoting activities to protect biodiversity in these regions and further afield. Sony introduced its Green Star Program in April 2011 as an internal framework for assessing the green performance of business sites and advancing green measures, and categorizes biodiversity considerations and initiatives as outlined below. Sony also communicates with employees about the importance of pursuing initiatives under the Green Star Program as a way to help achieve the Aichi Biodiversity Targets, working to build a shared recognition of the significance of these initiatives that will encourage action.
Biodiversity Considerations/Initiatives and Associated Aichi Biodiversity Targets
Measures Main Associated Aichi Targets
Education and awareness
  • Conduct education, seminars, and lectures concerning biodiversity
  • Conduct nature observation programs
Target 1 Awareness increased: Focus on raising awareness of the value of biodiversity and protective measures
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
Target 19 Knowledge improved, shared and applied: Improve related knowledge, science and technology
Improve ecosystems
  • Improvement of environment for living things
  • Give consideration to ecological network and green corridor
  • Give consideration to three-dimensional vegetation
  • Adoption of local species
Target 5 Habitat loss halved or reduced: Cut the loss of natural habitats, including forests, to at least half; significantly reduce degradation and fragmentation

Target 10 Pressures on vulnerable ecosystems reduced: Protect coral reefs and other ecosystems that are particularly susceptible to environmental changes
Measures against negative impact
  • Measures against alien species
  • Give consideration to bad effects on ecosystems caused by emissions
Target 8 Pollution reduced: Control contamination from chemical substances, fertilizers and pesticides to within parameters that are not harmful

Target 9 Invasive alien species prevented and controlled: Control or eradicate invasive alien species

Target 12 Extinction prevented: Prevent the extinction of known threatened species
Protection and
conservation of
ecosystem services
  • Grasp and conserve endangered species
  • Conserve a wildlife sanctuary
  • Groundwater recharge
Target 11 Protected areas increased and improved: Protect at least 17% of terrestrial areas and 10% of marine areas

Target 14 Ecosystems and essential services safeguarded: Restore and safeguard ecosystems that provide natural abundance
Management
  • Ensure the appropriate management and use of chemical substances
  • Ensure the effective use of organic resources
  • Promote procurement that leads to biodiversity
Target 4 Sustainable consumption and production: Implement plans for sustainable production and consumption among all stakeholders
Cooperation with stakeholders
  • Cooperation with stakeholders
  • Support for organizations that engage in biodiversity conservation activities
Associated targets depend on focus of activities

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 and China)

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 . 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 and the importance of biodiversity to as broad an audience as possible. In 2016, Sony China introduced its own Wow! Wow! Biodiversity Project to promote awareness of biodiversity and the implementation of conservation activities at business sites in China. As part of the project activities, Sony held Living Creatures Photo Contests in Japan and China to share the wonders of nature with as large an audience as possible. The 2016 photo contests received 1,070 submissions in Japan and 971 submissions in China.

  • Participants gather to experience nature at an event held in China (Shanghai Botanical Garden)

  • 2016 Japan photo contest Grand Prix Award winning photo

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

The Kunisaki Satellite at the Oita Technology Center of Sony Semiconductor Manufacturing Corporation monitors red-clawed crab and other marine creatures living along the coast, as well as wildlife living in the forest on the center's premises, which has been the focus of conservation since the site was established. The site has also been monitoring the status of a group of endangered golden orchid and cephalanthera erecta plants discovered during surveys in 2013. In 2015, the site began monitoring for alien species and has enacted conservation plans to protect the ecosystem on its premises through a variety of measures, including selecting trees to be removed.

  • An employee monitors growth

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

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.

  • The video camera is set up for fixed-point observations

Improve Ecosystems

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

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.

  • Maintaining humus with leaves and prunings at Sony Digital Products (Wuxi) Co., Ltd.

Participating in Local Nature Conservation Activities (UK and Japan)

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, wild grasslands, and waterways. In Japan, employees of Sony Network Communications Inc. work with community residents to maintain the So-net Forest in Saku City in Nagano Prefecture.

  • Nature conservation activities

Restoring Local Nature (Thailand and Japan)

In an effort to protect biodiversity, Sony Device Technology (Thailand) Co., Ltd. planted 200 trees in local parks in 2015. Sony Technology (Thailand) Co., Ltd. introduced a program to restore coral reefs in 2014, and had planted 500 coral larvae colonies by the end of 2015. In Japan, Kagoshima Technology Center of Sony Semiconductor Manufacturing Corporation took part in the Kirishima City 100,000 Trees Project, growing on the center's premises seedlings from acorns gathered in the nearby hills and planting them in local forests.

  • Planting coral fragments

Measures Against Negative Impact

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

Sony Precision Devices (Huizhou) Co., Ltd. (SPDH) has been carrying out an initiative for removing invasive species since 2010. In July 2016, SPDH employee volunteers worked with the city of Huizhou's water and environmental hygiene department to remove water hyacinth, a non-native aquatic plant, from the Dongjiang River. The volunteer group had already removed approximately 40 tons of water hyacinth, which has helped to restore balance to the ecosystem and protect the lush river environment.

  • Volunteer removes water hyacinth that had completely covered the water's surface

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 increased and improved" and 14 "Ecosystems and essential services safeguarded" of the Aichi Biodiversity Targets.

Activities to Protect the Harpy Eagle in Panama

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.

  • The harpy eagle

Firefly Protection Project in Japan

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.

  • A firefly raised by the project

Helping Ensure That Endangered Loggerhead Turtles Can Spawn in Japan

For over 20 years, the Kunisaki Satellite 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 is involved in the incubation of eggs laid by loggerhead sea turtles.

  • Recently hatched loggerhead sea turtle

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

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.

  • The biogas facility

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 as recycled paper and forest-certified paper.
For more information on 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" at the Sony and the Environment website.

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" at the CSR/Environment website.
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