Sony aims for zero footprint

Sony has become the largest multinational corporation to announce its intention to have a zero environmental footprint by 2050, including zero carbon emissions and the elimination of all non-renewable material from its products.

The plan includes the entire company, from electronics to music and films, and is intended to have a knock-on effect throughout its entire supply chain.

The first phase of the plan will start in 2011 and run through to 2016. During this time drastic cuts will be made across the board, including:

  • halving the amount of waste produced and recycling at least 99% of the remainder
  • reducing water consumption by 30% in operations
  • cutting greenhouse gas emissions by 30% in operations and 14% in logistics

Other activities will include conducting biodiversity impact assessments and establishing mechanisms and practices to measure suppliers’ contribution across a variety of areas including climate change and resource utilisation.

The commitment is radically different from other companies’ commitments to being carbon neutral. These commit a company to offsetting the resources used, for example, by planting trees.

Sony is pledging to stop emitting altogether and follows in the footsteps of Interface Global, an international flooring manufacturer which is aiming to have zero impact by 2020.

Sony has an impressive environmental record, with leadership in electronics recycling programmes in the EU, USA and Japan, and Sony Pictures having reduced its waste to landfill by 80% over six months to December 2009.

Sir Howard Stringer, Chairman, CEO and President of Sony Corporation said: “We are fully committed to putting our innovative spirit and technological expertise to use to help solve environmental challenges… We will work aggressively to meet the ambitious targets we are setting for ourselves and, at the same time, establish a model for others in our industries to follow.”

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