Biodiversity and Water Resources
Consideration of Biodiversity/Water Resources in Production Activities
Consideration of Biodiversity at Production Sites
Efforts to Fulfill the Guidelines for Biodiversity
In Konica Minolta’s Eco Vision 2050, its long-term environmental vision, the Company commits to restoring and conserving biodiversity. It uses the Ecological Service Review (ESR), a biodiversity service assessment for companies developed by the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment, an environmental assessment carried out at the recommendation of the United Nations. This review looked at all of the Konica Minolta Group’s businesses to identify business activities that depend on and affect ecosystems. A correlation map was then prepared for each product life cycle stage, summarizing the benefits that Konica Minolta’s business activities receive from biodiversity and their impact on biodiversity. After assessing these results, Konica Minolta identified the specific areas it will address. This evaluation and identification process reflected the views of third parties, with interviews conducted of two expert institutions, including Japan’s Ministry of Environment.
Konica Minolta is working to preserve biodiversity as part of its unique Green Factory Certification System for comprehensive evaluation of the environmental activities of its production sites. In 2011, it established Guidelines for Biodiversity Preservation that sets targets and standards for items that we evaluated and identified as having a high impact and dependence on biodiversity in our business activities. The Guidelines were incorporated as one of its standards for the Green Factory Certification System. In 2020, Konica Minolta reviewed its Guidelines, expanded the requirements to 48 items, and established the green factory guidelines for water resources and biodiversity to strengthen its standards. Konica Minolta has asked that all of its key production sites comply with these guidelines. The Company will further deepen its coordination with stakeholders such as business partners and the community, contribute to the local environment on a broader scale, and resolve social issues.
Green Factory Guidelines for Water Resources and Biodiversity <Extracted>
<Consideration of water resources>
- Reduction targets are set for total water intake, or for water used on site, and reduction measures are implemented
- If groundwater is used, measures must be taken to reduce the amount used
<Consideration of wastewater>
- In order to prevent ecological damage to rivers and lakes, a risk management system must be established to eliminate highly polluted wastewater
- Checks are in place to determine the impact on ecosystems such as aquatic habitats of wastewater emitted into public water areas
<Proper management of greenery at factories>
- Invasive alien species that are likely to have a negative impact on ecosystems are not planted or sown on the factory's premises
- When planting trees on factory grounds, management and protection must be accorded to any rare species that are discovered
Consideration of Water Resources
Konica Minolta monitors and manages the volume of water use at each site and strives to reduce its total water consumption in line with the reduction targets it has established.
Konica Minolta’s key production sites around the world have set targets for reducing water intake, and they are work to reduce water use under the green factory guidelines for water resources and biodiversity, which are part of the Green Factory Certification System. In fiscal 2022, a water intake reduction target of 439,000m3 compared to fiscal 2015 was set. As a result of initiatives taken by production sites, water intake was reduced by 439,000m3 compared to fiscal 2015 levels.
A key initiative at Konica Minolta’s production sites is water recycling measures. Konica Minolta’s key production sites are also reviewing their use of water in plants and working to make reductions. After considering the impact on users and the backup system in the event of problems, the sites decided to reuse drain water, which has relatively few impurities and is easy to reuse, as a supplementary feed for the cooling tower. Addiional measures include reducing the volume of heated water used and the energy required to produce the heated water, such as changing temperature controls to only steam rather than a two-stage control process involving steam and hot water during in-process regulation of reaction temperatures. The sites are also working to save water through other detailed efforts. These include reducing tool cleaning frequency by coating mesh surfaces on tools so material is less likely to adhere, and moving away from equipment cleaning using water to cleaning with automatically dispersed compressed air. Moreover, sites are collecting rainwater for use in cooling towers. They are also working to efficiently use water resources outside of the production process as well through measures such as installing water-saving faucet valves, checking for leakage from piping and repairing piping damage.
In fiscal 2013, the Group adopted an analysis method using the WRI*1 AQUEDUCT*2 to conduct a comprehensive risk assessment on usage of water resources at production and R&D sites and major suppliers around the world, and confirms water risk levels every year. In fiscal 2022, the Group evaluated ten new suppliers, and no sites were rated as having an extremely high Overall Water Risk.
There was one site that was assessed as having high water stress, but sales at this site account for less than 1% of the Group’s overall sales. Water intake at this site in fiscal 2022 was 87,000m3 and water consumption was 12,000m3. With a target of reducing water intake by 600m3 annually, the Group reduced product cleaning water by improving yields and introduced water-saving faucets for all lifestyle water faucets. As a result, water intake was reduced by 800m3 in fiscal 2022.
In the future, the Group will continue to conduct water risk assessments when establishing new sites and changing the business environment, and it will take measures to reduce water use as necessary.
Additionally, production sites that use groundwater as their main intake source have set reduction targets with an indicator of the percentage of groundwater use accounted for in production output (i.e., per unit of production). They are making efforts to reduce the use of groundwater, such as by turning off the supply of cooling water when production is stopped.
- WRI (World Resources Institute)
- Aqueduct: World maps and information showing the latest water risks published by the WRI. Produced based on 12 key water risk indicators such as physical water stress and regulatory risk related to water resources.
Consideration of Wastewater
Konica Minolta regularly conducts compliance assessments on a global basis to confirm the status of compliance with laws, ordinances, agreements, and other relevant regulations related to effluent, with the aim of preventing water pollution from effluent.
The Group has assessed the effect of effluent on the ecosystem at production sites that release effluent used in the production process into rivers. It adopted WET,* a new effluent management method using bioassays that is gaining worldwide attention, when conducting the assessments. With the cooperation of Japan's National Institute for Environmental Studies, the Group conducted tests using three aquatic species (algae, crustaceans, and fish). The results indicated that there was no negative impact (algae: inhibition of growth; crustaceans: inhibition of breeding; fish: reduced hatching rate or reduced survival rate after hatching) on any of the three test organisms.
- WET (Whole Effluent Toxicity): A method that assesses the aggregate toxic effect of wastewater on aquatic life rather than the evaluation of individual chemical substances. Unlike conventional effluent management methods, it enables holistic assessment of the effect of an effluent, detecting impact caused by any non-regulated chemical substance or the combined impact of multiple substances.
Proper Management of Greenery at Factories
Golden orchid at the Tokyo Site Hino Konica Minolta practices proper management of greenery on the grounds of the Group's production sites. By preparing greenery management lists for each site and conducting periodic checks, it makes sure that there are no invasive species, including sowing seeds.
Additionally, when rare species are discovered at a site, efforts are made to protect the species by making employees and visitors aware of its presence by putting up signs and fences. For instance, the Tokyo Site Hino is managing and protecting Golden Orchid (Cephalanthera falcata) and Japanese lily (Lilium speciosum), which are endangered species.
Consideration of Biodiversity in Procurement
In the Group’s procurement activities, Konica Minolta aims to help build a sustainable society by building strong relationships with business partners to fulfill social responsibilities, based on transparency and fairness. In order to reduce the impact of its procurement activities on ecosystems, Konica Minolta has set an example by establishing a procurement policy. It has established a Supplier Code of Conduct and asks that business partners cooperate to minimize the negative effect on natural resources.
Konica Minolta also promotes Green Supplier Activities to reduce environmental impact while also reducing costs in order to provide suppliers with the environmental technology and expertise it has amassed in its Green Factory activities. In these activities, Konica Minolta’s environmental experts visit suppliers and consider and implement measures to reduce water use.
Konica Minolta asks that its suppliers manage water appropriately by complying with the Konica Minolta Supply Chain Code of Conduct, based on its CSR procurement program.
In addition, Kinko's Japan, a sales subsidiary in Japan, has acquired CoC certification, a certification for the management of FSC processing and distribution processes, and provides printed materials with the FSC certification mark through on-demand printing.