Climate change refers to any change in measures of climate (e.g. temperature, precipitation or wind) over long periods of time due to climate forcings (i.e. natural variability or human effects). Internal forcing mechanisms include fluctuation of ocean current (e.g. El Niño-Southern Oscillation); while external forcing mechanisms include solar radiation, volcanic eruptions, and human influences (e.g. fossil fuel combustion). According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), global warming has been accelerating since the mid-20th century because of increasing anthropogenic greenhouse gas concentration and other human-related factors.
Greenhouse gases are the gaseous constituents of the atmosphere that absorb and emit thermal infrared radiation and thus cause greenhouse effect. They include:
The carbon neutral concept refers to removing as much carbon dioxide from the atmosphere as we add.
We can achieve carbon neutrality in the following four main areas:
Our Simitri Toner contains biomass which is carbon neutral during recycling and further reduces the carbon footprint of our business products.
Carbon offsets are credits for reduction in carbon emissions which are quantified in metric tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent (tCO2e). Individuals, companies, or governments can compensate their unavoidable emissions by planting trees or supporting greenhouse gas reduction projects such as renewable energy development. The Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) established by the Kyoto Protocol and the EU Emissions Trading Scheme allow purchases of carbon offsets in the compliance market.
Our Simitri Toner is made from plant-based biomass resources. Photosynthesis during plant growth can offset the amount of CO2 generated from the disposal of wasted paper and deinked toner particles.
Recycling turns used materials into valuable resources. Waste separation is the key to recycling. Since 1998, Hong Kong government has been promoting 3-color Recycle Bins to help collect paper, metal and plastic.
Recycling can reduce landfills, conserve natural resources, and mitigate pollutions from the products made with virgin materials (e.g. petroleum).
Konica Minolta developed proprietary new polymer alloy recycled PET for MFPs. It is a new environmentally considerate plastic which effectively utilizes PET waste.
The biological diversity of organisms sustains ecosystem services (e.g. water purification, nutrient cycling and climate regulation) that make the Earth inhabitable for humans. It is also a source of food, fuel, medicine and other essentials. However, our behavior has accelerated the loss of biodiversity. Habitats are being destructed by climate change, pollution and deforestation.
One of the environmental targets of our Group is restoring and preserving biodiversity. Guidelines set for management of water resources and wastewater, and proper management of greenery at factory sites in our Green Factory Certification System.
Biomass is the total mass of living organisms that can be supported at each trophic level in a food chain, in another word, chemical energy stored in organisms through photosynthesis. It includes a wide range of substances, such as crop (e.g. wheat, sugarcane), herb and agricultural waste. Biomass technologies are gaining environmental importance since the supply of natural resources is sustainable and crops absorb CO2 during growth.
Two major biomass technologies:
Our Simitri Toner is made from plant-based biomass resources which can diminish environmental impact of business operation.
RoHS stands for the “Restriction of the Use of Certain Hazardous Substances in Electrical and Electronic Equipment”. It is a European Directive aiming to control the use of certain hazardous substances (e.g. mercury, lead, hexavalent chromium, cadmium and a range of flame retardants) in the production of electrical and electronic equipment. After 1st July 2006, all electronic products put on the European market have to pass RoHS compliance. Konica Minolta has phased out these hazardous substances in our MFPs and printers.
The Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Directive (WEEE Directive) aims to ensure electrical and electronic products sold in the European Union can be broken down, reused or recycled easily at the end of the life cycle so as to reduce WEEE. Producers have to tackle the waste management, including collection, treatment, recycling and recovery. RoHS supports WEEE Directive by reducing the amount of hazardous materials used in production. Thus it reduces the risk of exposure to recycling workers.
FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) is an independent non-governmental organization established in 1993. It aims to promote the responsible management of the world's forest since deforestation is getting worse. Environmental problems brought by deforestation include global warming, soil loss, reduction of biodiversity.
FSC certification is a voluntary tool to promote responsible production and consumption of forest products and hence support better forest management.
Konica Minolta offers FSC CoC (Chain-of-Custody) certified papers which are verified from the forest of origin through the supply chain.