Japan: Management Strategy Sumitomo Chemical to Form Carbon Neutral Strategy Council
With an aim to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050, Sumitomo Chemical has plans to create a Carbon Neutral Strategy Council which will enable the company to formulate strategies and set milestones to attain its objective. The organization will also set up a Carbon Neutral Strategy Cross-Functional Team to support the Council.
Japan – Sumitomo Chemical has decided to establish a Carbon Neutral Strategy Council and a Carbon Neutral Strategy Cross-Functional Team on February 1, 2021, in order to promote and formulate the Sumitomo Chemical Group’s strategies for achieving carbon neutrality by 2050.
The coronavirus pandemic has reaffirmed the importance of resolving various issues facing the international community, including climate change, energy, food supply and control of infectious diseases. Particularly for climate change, countries and regions around the world, including Japan, have pledged one after another to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050 so that the global average temperature increase can be limited to 1.5 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels.
Governments and private companies have begun to explore ways forward and take action. Attaining this goal requires technological development such as carbon recycling technology, and the chemical industry is strongly urged to create innovations and contribute through its businesses to the achievement of carbon neutrality in society as a whole.
Keenly aware of this need, Sumitomo Chemical has decided to set up a Carbon Neutral Strategy Council in order to formulate strategies and set milestones for the Sumitomo Chemical Group based on the four approaches shown below. This will drive its efforts towards achieving carbon neutrality by 2050 from a long-term and comprehensive perspective.
Sumitomo Chemical’s approaches to carbon neutrality strategies
1. To minimize greenhouse gas emissions associated with the Group’s production activities through innovation, and provide and deploy new technologies across the world.
2. To drive innovations for greenhouse gas emissions reduction regarding materials used in society, and provide products and solutions that contribute to carbon neutrality from a Life Cycle Assessment* perspective.
3. To actively engage in the development of technologies for recovery, separation, use and storage of greenhouse gases emitted from other industries and from communities, and help the process by becoming part of a system that implements such technologies in society.
4. To take on the long-term challenge of developing carbon negative technologies to reduce the absolute volume of greenhouse gas in the atmosphere.
A Carbon Neutral Strategy Cross-Functional Team is also set up as an administrative office for the Council. This is a cross-sectoral team led by executive officers supervising research planning and coordination, responsible care, and related functions. The team will play a major role in incorporating into the company’s strategies multifaceted approaches unique to a diversified chemical company, such as society-wide implementation of innovative energy-storage and energy-saving technologies, the establishment of effective carbon cycles, promoting the supply and use of hydrogen (including ammonia), and contributing to reducing greenhouse gas emissions in the livestock and agricultural sectors.
* Life Cycle Assessment (LCA): A method for quantitatively assessing the environmental impact of a certain product or service across its entire life cycle, from the procurement of raw materials to its use and disposal.