A group effort, Ricoh’s sustainable environmental management began as early as the 1970s, to engage and balance conservation activities with business sustainability. Read their Climate Action story here!
Throughout our advocacy for the environment, the company has already gone through two stages. First was the Passive stage, when our environmental conservation activities were functioned to cope with external requirements. Next, the Proactive stage, when we carried out our mission as a global citizen, striving to reduce environmental impact through energy and resource conservation, recycling, pollution prevention and education among employees.
Now in our Responsible stage, we have moved from CSR to Creating Shared Values (CSV). We seek to achieve environmental conservation and profits simultaneously, through developing environmental technologies, and reducing and fine-tuning our manufacturing and procurement process.
On a global scale, our efforts include joining RE100 last year, when we showed our commitment to power Ricoh globally with 100 per cent renewable energy by 2050. In Singapore, our regional office has been fully powered by renewable energy since 2017.
Locally, we embarked on the green journey 15 years ago, striving to become one of the leading companies committed to the environment. In 2016, we were awarded the President’s Award for the Environment.
We believe in advocating environmental sustainability with the People, Public and Private (3P) sectors in Singapore.
In 2004, we began by inculcating the Eco office concept into our local operation, which earned us Project Eco Office Certification by the Singapore Environment Council in 2005.
We have also provided support to other environmental initiatives such as adopting annual tree-planting activities, in conjunction with the Clean and Green Singapore movement. As a result, more than 3,000 trees have been planted to date.
And to bring our environmental efforts to the community, we established Eco Action Day in 2007, which has since become Singapore’s largest and longest, annual business-led environmental initiative, with the goal of encouraging awareness and action for the environment. In conjunction with World Environment Day, the event is held every 5 June. In its 12th year this year, Ricoh has received more than 1,000 corporate pledges to take positive measures to a greener environment. Each pledge will also contribute to the total Climate Action Pledges by the Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources (MEWR).
While we had more than a decade of success for Eco Action Day, we felt that we needed to do more to ensure maximum relevance and impact. As a result, we introduced a new element, starting last year which is focused on a specific United Nations Sustainable Development Goal (UN SDG), which covers how companies in Singapore can apply circular economy principles, and business models, in practice.
This year’s spotlight is on how to tackle one of UN’s most important SDGs, Goal 9, to build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialisation, and foster innovation. “Industry Innovation in the Year of Climate Action,” this year’s Eco Action Day Industry Roundtable 2018 on 31 May, jointly hosted by Ricoh and Eco-Business, together with government, business, and civil society leaders, they will discuss how companies in Singapore can apply the principles of SDG 9 in their operations.
At the event, we will share information about our latest environmental technology. The team has worked hard and developed a process where we can extract oil from plastics, which can then be used in our factory operations. This method is known as waste plastic oiling, and our General Manager for Service and Environment Division in Ricoh Asia Pacific, J.D Kasamoto, will be leading the discussion.
Many have asked why we take environmental sustainability so seriously. Our response is that we firmly believe that companies with the ability to tackle climate change should do so, and this can be achieved through taking on more responsibilities, and offering specific solutions, to the many problems we face.
In line with this trend, it is critical for us to make efforts toward greater sustainability and to proactively disclose the details and results of our environment, social and governance efforts. We want to do this, both to fulfil our important responsibilities as corporate citizens, and to enhance our corporate value as the Ricoh Group.
One area in which we achieved this was through the 2016 opening of our Eco Business Development Centre in Gotemba City, Japan. The Centre has allowed us to realise and amplify our vision of sustainability, through the following functions:
- A reuse and recycling centre
- A centre for verification of eco-business technology
- A source to distribute information about eco-business activities
As a final word of advice, we need to be aware that sustainability and environmental conservation cannot be the effort of a single person or organisation. It involves the collective efforts of every member of society. Eco Action Day epitomises this as the call for pledges are from different stakeholders in society – individuals, organisations and schools.
Eco Action Day happens on 5 June 2018. Find out more about how you can join the movement here!
Also, take Climate Action and submit your pledge here!