Our stance on the environment
To create a world where people can live in harmony with the earth, SoftBank Group defines our vision as to help shape the next 300 years for our future generations and the planet. In practice, from a sustainability standpoint, we aim to leverage breakthrough technologies to resolve environmental issues, including energy problems. Based on the recognition that the maintenance and preservation of the global environment is the foundation of the Group's sustainability and growth, we established the “Environmental Policy” as a group policy in May 2021. We require all SoftBank Group directors, officers and employees to understand the Policy and will ask stakeholders, such as investees and business partners to respond in the same way.
The SoftBank Group's “Environmental Policy” sets out the principles to take the global environment into consideration when conducting corporate activities. This policy was decided by a resolution of SoftBank Group Corp.'s Board of Directors and it requires all directors, officers and employees of the SoftBank Group to be aware of the need to reduce the burden on the global environment in all business activities, to conserve resources and energy, to improve energy efficiency and make effective use of resources in order to achieve harmony between mankind and nature, and to maintain biodiversity and contribute to the continuous improvement of the global environment. We will communicate with SoftBank Group stakeholders to promote business activities in consideration of the global environment.
Approach to environmental issues
SoftBank Group monitors its environmental performance, including data on greenhouse gas emissions and energy consumption in the course of its business operations, and discloses the results annually. In cooperation with our stakeholders, we are promoting initiatives contributing to solve environmental issues, such as addressing climate change and enhancing energy efficiency. The details of these initiatives are disclosed on this website and in our Sustainability Report.
Furthermore, major operational bases of SoftBank Corp. have established and operated an environmental management system (EMS) under the International Organization for Standardization’s ISO14001 Standards. The EMS is regularly reviewed on a timely basis and is continuously improved based on the effect of business activities on the environment. SoftBank Corp. has strived to comply with environmental laws and regulations. There were no violations of environmental laws and regulations in fiscal 2022.
Enhanced environmental awareness
SoftBank Group established the “SoftBank Group Code of Conduct,” which specifies that we are committed to:
· Introduce innovative solutions that provide a positive environmental and social impact.
· Lead globally and act locally to reduce and improve our impact on the environment.
· Conduct our business activities with consideration for the global environment and the effective utilization of limited natural resources.
SoftBank Group has thoroughly disseminated the Code of Conduct to all Group employees. Specifically, we require employees to consider the environment in our everyday work, including control and reduction of the emission of greenhouse gases and handling of industrial waste. SoftBank Group also regularly provides training sessions to promote the understanding of the Code of Conduct. In addition, SoftBank Corp. provides “ECO Training” through an e-learning program to help employees acquire basic knowledge and raise awareness of environmental issues. Employees can learn about environmental sustainability and improvement from four perspectives: global environmental issues; trends in the world and Japan; regulations and corporate initiatives, and explanations of legal regulations. E-learning courses on appropriate processing of industrial waste and the Electronic Manifest System are available to relevant employees. Employees can also access these e-learning courses on demand from their iPads or iPhones.
Environmentally-friendly supply chain
In order to promote environmentally-friendly business activities, the SoftBank Group has formulated ethical standards for the environment in its “Supplier Code of Conduct,” and require suppliers to work in accordance with the ethical standards set forth in the Code. The SoftBank Group will proactively undertake relevant environmentally-friendly corporate activities through partnership with our stakeholders.
Efforts to Address Climate Change
Our stance on climate change
Natural disasters caused by climate change are becoming more severe every year and urgent action to climate change mitigation and adaptation is required. The SoftBank Group recognizes the importance of addressing climate change and is making group-wide efforts to provide the society with new and innovative technologies that contribute to solving climate change.
Climate-related Information Disclosures in accordance with the TCFD Recommendations
SoftBank Group Corp. disclosed its climate-related governance, risk management, strategy, metrics and targets in accordance with the recommendations of the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD).
Commitment to achieve Carbon Neutrality by fiscal 2030
The SoftBank Group is making efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from business activities. The majority of the SoftBank Group’s greenhouse gas emissions come from the use of electricity. Therefore, as a step forward to achieve Carbon Neutrality, the SoftBank Group mainly focuses on a shift to electricity generated from renewable energy sources. Meanwhile, electricity and energy-saving measures utilizing IoT are also implemented at the head office building and data centers.
SoftBank Group Corp. set a group target*1 as below in June 2022 and aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from business activities of the SoftBank Group to virtually zero by fiscal 2030.
Targets of SoftBank Group Corp. and major subsidiaries
SoftBank Group Corp. has achieved Carbon Neutrality*2 since fiscal 2020. In addition, major subsidiaries have also set their own targets regarding greenhouse gas emission reduction, undertaking various initiatives to achieve the targets.
Covers Greenhouse gas emissions (Scope 1 and Scope 2) from business activities by SBG and its major subsidiaries which are, in principle, in accordance with the "Major subsidiaries” in the Annual Report but there are some exceptions due to regulatory reasons
Covers Scope 1 and Scope 2
Effectively renewable electricity using non-fossil certificates with renewable energy designation
Covers Scope 1, Scope 2, and Scope 3
Efficient use of energy and increased reliance on renewable energy
Recognizing the importance of efficient and sustainable use of energy and resources, the SoftBank Group is working to reduce the use of energy and resources and actively introduce renewable energy.
Utilizing energy-saving technologies in company headquarters (SoftBank Group Corp. and SoftBank Corp.)
“Tokyo Portcity Takeshiba Office Tower” is where SoftBank Group Corp., SoftBank Corp. and other Group companies are located. This building is equipped with energy-saving technologies, such as LED lighting, that uses motion sensors to automatically adjust brightness and automatically operate blinds.
Using renewable energy for base station power consumption(SoftBank Corp.)
SoftBank Corp. is promoting the conversion of base station power consumption to renewable energy to achieve its commitment to reducing its greenhouse gas emissions to Virtually zero by 2030. SoftBank Corp. purchases electricity from virtually renewable energy* from SB Power Corp., a subsidiary of the company that operates an electricity retail business. At the end of fiscal2021, more than 50% of the electricity used at mobile phone base stations has already been provided by virtually renewable energy*. The company plans to increase the ratio to 70% or more in fiscal 2022.
Data Center Energy Efficiency and Conversion to Renewable Energy (Yahoo Japan Corporation)
Yahoo Japan Corporation has set a goal of converting all electricity used in its business activities to renewable energy by fiscal 2023, and is actively switching to renewable energy sources, particularly in its data centers. In its major data centers in Japan, the corporation has been installing air conditioning systems that use outside air for exhaust heat treatment of servers, and has been working to significantly reduce electricity consumption. In addition, the company has completely switched its power used in Shirakawa Data Center to virtually renewable energy* supplied by SB Power Corp. from May 2021.
Reducing power consumption through “white work style” (SoftBank Corp.)
SoftBank corp. is engaged in reducing environmental impact through the application of information and communications technology (ICT). Through the implementation and proposal of a new way of working called “White Work Style,” work efficiency is improved while the volume of paper and energy consumed in day-to-day business is reduced. “White Work Style” is a service that allows employees to access internal work systems and software simply by connecting to the network. Home PCs or personal iPhones and iPads can also be connected to an environment equivalent to the office PC, allowing flexibility in working time and location, such as teleworking from home, when on the move or from outside of the office. Furthermore, with computer processing carried out on network servers rather than individual computers, computer power consumption can be reduced. By centralizing these servers at a large-scale data center, operational efficiency can be improved and overall power consumption will be reduced.
Promoting decarbonization through initiatives
Establishment and operation of Renewable Energy Council and GDC Renewable Energy Council (SoftBank Group Corp.)
In response to the energy crisis caused by the Great East Japan Earthquake on March 11, 2011, SoftBank Group Corp., together with prefectures across Japan, established the “Renewable Energy Council” in July 2011. In addition to the Renewable Energy Council, SoftBank Group Corp., together with government-designated cities across Japan, also established the “GDC Renewable Energy Council” in the same month. Both Councils aim to promote and expand the use of renewable energy which is a reliable, safe, and sustainable new energy source. Since then, SoftBank Group Corp. has been involved in the operation of both Councils from a neutral standpoint as the secretariat. The Renewable Energy Council and the GDC Renewable Energy Council, led by municipalities from 34 prefectures and all 20 government-designated cities, respectively, are working actively with companies and organizations which endorse each Council’s principle towards the promotion and expansion of renewable energy.
Since their establishment in 2011, both Councils have made several policy proposals to the government that contribute to the promotion and expansion of renewable energy. These include setting renewable energy targets as well as developing and revising energy related systems and regulations that take into account regional characteristics. For instance, the phrase “Renewable Energy as Major Power Source”, has been included in both Council’s policy proposals for several years. The Japanese government’s 6th Strategic Energy Plan, approved in 2021, states that renewable energy will be introduced to its maximum extent at the highest priority as the major power source. Moreover, the 22-24% renewable energy target of Japan’s FY2030 energy mix stated in the 5th Strategic Energy Plan in 2018 has been raised to 36-38% in the 6th Strategic Energy Plan. Renewable energy is now positioned as one of the most important power sources to achieve Japan's 2050 Carbon Neutral Goal. Both Councils plan to continue offering policy proposals to the government several times a year in order to further address climate change through the promotion and expansion of renewable energy.
Furthermore, the two Councils hold events for the municipality members and corporate members, including seminars by government policy makers and experts in the field of renewable energy, as well as workshops and discussion sessions among the members to share good practices and issues regarding renewable energy. At such occasions, the Councils aim to incorporate diverse perspectives, covering not only policy analysis but also case studies of renewable energy projects in which municipalities and private companies collaborate, as well as knowledge sharing with the academia. Through these activities, both Councils offer meaningful opportunities for municipalities and the private sector to further share and exchange information, contributing to the municipalities’ local renewable energy policies and to the private sector’s efforts towards decarbonization. As the secretariat, SoftBank Group Corp. will continue being involved in the operation of the two Councils from a neutral standpoint, contributing to the promotion and expansion of renewable energy.
Participation in Japan Climate Initiative (SoftBank Group Corp. and SB Energy Corp.)
SoftBank Group Corp. and SB Energy Corp. are inaugural members of the Japan Climate Initiative, a network created in 2018 to strengthen the dissemination of information and the exchange of opinions and views by companies, local authorities and NGOs that proactively tackle climate changes.
The Japan Climate Initiative (JCI) is a network of non-state actors with the mission of "joining the front line of the global push for decarbonization from Japan." The organization was formed in 2018 with CDP Japan, WWF Japan and the Renewable Energy Institute, which Softbank Group Corp. CEO Masayoshi Son founded in 2011, serving as the secretariat.
JCI’s mission aligns with the SoftBank Group’s proactive response to the impacts of climate change and associated risks and opportunities. We recognize climate change as a key management issue and are taking bold steps to tackle it. JCI is a committed advocate of climate action.
The organization has hosted the Japan Climate Action Summit every year since its founding. It has also published the Japan Climate Action Summit Declaration as a message from Japanese non-state stakeholders, a public comment urging the Japanese government to show global leadership by drafting a long-term decarbonization strategy, and an editorial ad pushing the Japanese government to raise its 2030 renewable energy target. By endorsing these policies alongside other JCI members, the SoftBank Group has stressed the urgency of climate action. Our participation in JCI seminars and other events and conversations with JCI members are also helping to accelerate the decarbonization of our own investment and business portfolios.
Our activities with JCI are outlined below.
・July 6, 2018: SBG*1 joins JCI as inaugural member
・October 12, 2018: SBG and SBE*2 endorse Japan Climate Action Summit Declaration from Japan's non-state actors pushing for climate action
・October 12, 2018: SBG attends Japan Climate Action Summit 2019 (JCAS2019) seminar
・May 16, 2019: JCI issues a message “Japan needs an ambitious long-term strategy to show Japan’s decarbonization leadership to the world” to the Japanese government as public comment. SBG and SBE endorse the comment
・October 31, 2019: SBG attends Japan Climate Action Summit 2019 (JCAS2019) seminar
・October 13, 2020: SBG attends Japan Climate Action Summit 2020 (JCAS2020) seminar
・January 18, 2021: JCI publishes an editorial advertisement in Nihon Keizai Shimbun urging the Japanese government to raise 2030 renewable energy target. SBG and SBE endorse the ad
・April 19, 2021: JCI issues a message “Calling for an Ambitious 2030 Target for Japan to Realize the Paris Agreement Goal” to the Japanese government. SBG and SBE endorse the message
・June 3, 2022: JCI issues a message “Now is the time to accelerate renewable energy deployment -Calling for stronger climate change action in the midst of the fossil energy crisis-” to the Japanese government. SBG and SBE endorse the message
Going forward, JCI plans to use its leadership and business network to scale up climate action in Japan and drive climate action on the global level.
*1 SoftBank Group Corp., *2 SB Energy Corp.
Spread of Renewable Energy
With the aim of combining renewable energy and technology to realize a convenient, comfortable society, SB Energy Corp. is building a platform that supplies energy safely and continuously.
The renewable energy power generation business, which SB Energy Corp. has been developing since its establishment in 2011, operates in total 50 solar photovoltaic and wind power plants in Japan and Mongolia, with a generating capacity of around 773 MW, enough to meet the annual power consumption of around 270,000 ordinary Japanese households as of April 2022.
Also, since 2012, the company has been conducting an experience-based environmental education program for children, which encourages participants to think independently and creatively about energy.
In addition to its power generation business, the company is conducting a virtual power plant verification project aimed at the effective utilization of power grids and investing in startups whose businesses are highly compatible with renewable energy.
SB Energy Corp. constructed, wind power generation plant "Wind Farm Hamada," in Kanagi and Yasaka Town, Hamada City, Shimane Prefecture.
As part of its community service activities, the company has conducted experience-based environmental education programs.
Promotion of Circular Economy
In order to make efficient and effective use of limited resources, the SoftBank Group strives to reduce the environmental impact of its business activities by conserving resources, reducing the generation of waste, and promoting the reuse and recycling of products and other materials. We also contribute to the realization of a circulate economy through our reuse business.
Promotion of “3R” Initiative in Mobile Phone Services (SoftBank Corp.)
In order to realize a circular economy, SoftBank Corp. is promoting the “3R initiatives
(Reduce = reduce the volume of waste, Reuse = use repeatedly, Recycle = utilize once again as resources)” in the mobile phone services.
|Reduce||Reduce paper consumption by digitizing instruction manuals and invoices, and using iPads in stores|
|Reuse||Promote trade-in of mobile phones and tablets, some of which are for reuse in emerging countries|
|Recycle||Collect and recycle used mobile phones handsets and battery packs|
E-commerce Services that Contribute to a Circular Economy (Yahoo Japan Corporation)
Yahoo Japan Corporation offers “YAHUOKU!” and “PayPay Flea Market” as e-commerce services that contribute to the realization of a circular economy through the promotion of reuse.
|YAHUOKU!||YAHUOKU! is one of the largest online auction and flea market services in Japan since 1999. The service promotes the reuse of unwanted items by those who need them, thereby helping to create a circular economy.
|PayPay Flea Market||PayPay Flea Market is a service that specializes in flea market-type transactions, where individuals can easily trade goods at fixed price. In collaboration with YAHUOKU!, it aims for the further development of the business in sustainable secondary distribution.