Climate Change and Problems with Plastic
Through its supply of chemicals and highly functional plastic products, the Mitsui Chemicals Group has contributed to improving convenience in people’s lives and helped to solve challenges in society by, for example, improving energy efficiency and reducing food loss. At the same time, our business activities require the substantial use of fossil resources and energy, which emits large volumes of GHGs. Also, in recent years there is growing concern over environmental pollution caused by plastic waste that has leaked into the oceans. We see these problems pertaining to climate change and plastics as serious challenges for society that must be earnestly addressed. As these two issues are inseparable, we established the Climate Change/Plastics Strategy Department within the Corporate Sustainability Division to strengthen our response in June 2020.
To resolve these challenges, we believe that a transition is needed from a so-called linear economy of consuming resources and disposing of products, to a circular economy in which renewable resources are used and other resources are utilized efficiently as well as collected for reuse to prevent waste.
Adopting a life cycle assessment (LCA) approach, we are striving to bring about a circular economy through efforts focused on both climate change and problems with plastic.
System and Responsible Officers
The responsible officer in charge of the Corporate Sustainability Committee is the responsible officer.
The Corporate Sustainability Committee is responsible for deliberation on policy, strategy, planning, and countermeasures concerning climate change and plastic problems. The deliberation results are then reported to the Management Committee. The agendas are then, as necessary, discussed by the Group-wide Strategy Committee meetings and deliberated by the Management Committee. The Board of Directors then finalizes the agendas and monitors them.
We have formed a sub-committee within the Corporate Sustainability Committee to discuss plastics strategies and climate change measures in detail. This sub-committee has a Group-wide structure comprised of a working group and a steering committee. Under this structure, the working group gathers candidate projects that align with our policies and strategies from across the Group, and works on firming up the details and proposes them to the steering committee. If some of the candidate projects would be difficult for one division to implement alone, the working group handles internal coordination between related divisions. The steering committee reaches swift decisions by selecting projects from among those proposed by the working group, deciding on resource allocation, and approving the projects.