CSR Information

Biodiversity Conservation in Company-Owned Forests
in Japan and Plantation Forests Overseas

Biodiversity Conservation in Company-Owned Forests in Japan

The Policy on Biodiversity Conservation for Company-owned forests in Japan calls for efforts to promote diversity of ecosystems through proper management of protected areas and consideration toward the continuity of forests, diversity of species through protection of rare flora and fauna, and genetic diversity through the maintenance of populations.

In keeping with these policies, forests are subject to appropriate zoning and management according to certain criteria, such as the increment of trees. Sumitomo Forestry is also making efforts to create endangered species lists and manuals and conduct monitoring surveys of wildlife.

Policy on Biodiversity Conservation in Company-Owned Forests in Japan(Excerpt) (Formulated June 2006)

1. Diversity of ecosystems

We will properly manage strictly protected areas designated under the Natural Parks Law and other legislation in a manner stipulated by the law. In other areas, we will ensure continuity of forests by limiting the area of forest harvested, particularly when clear cutting is conducted.

2. Diversity of species

We will work to prevent a decline in the number of species existing in natural forests by refraining from expansive planting projects and other extreme activities involving the replacement of species that would have a major impact on existing ecosystems. We will also give the utmost consideration to the protection of rare flora and fauna in all operations, making reference to the Sumitomo Forestry Red Data Book.

3. Genetic diversity

Genetic variation and the maintenance of populations to support them will become issues in the future. However, analysis is complicated and therefore we will closely watch monitoring activities carried out by government and public institutions and their findings.

Page Top

Red Data Book and Riparian Forest Management Manual

Sumitomo Forestry creates a Sumitomo Forestry Red Data Book listing flora and fauna at threat of extinction which may exist in Company-owned forests and distributes it to employees and contractors involved in forest management. By carrying the book with them during operations, personnel can refer to the opinions of specialists when they come across flora and fauna included in the book and take action. In fiscal 2016, the Company reviewed the Sumitomo Forestry Red Data Book (Osaka Office Mie Office Edition) in order to newly add species mapped in the forestry.

The Company has also created the Riparian Forest Management Manual to ensure the appropriate management and preservation of areas around bodies of water that are rich in biodiversity.

Sumitomo Forestry Red Data Book

Sumitomo Forestry Red Data Book

Page Top

Wildlife Monitoring Surveys

Sumitomo Forestry monitors wildlife inhabiting Company-owned forests. Every year, surveys are conducted in one of four areas— Mombetsu (Hokkaido), Niihama (Shikoku), Hyuga (Kyushu) and Hyogo/Mie (Honshu). Data for each area is therefore accumulated in four-year cycles. This is used to create basic reference materials relating to biodiversity and to ascertain the impact of forestry on the surrounding environment over the long-term.

In fiscal 2016, we conducted monitoring surveys that included (1) mammal surveys, (2) fixed-point surveys of birds of prey, and (3) bird surveys and fixed-point imaging for the creation of growth potential maps for birds of prey (mountain hawk-eagles) in Niihama. In the surveys for this year, we were unable to confirm any mountain hawk-eagles, but we were able to see forest appropriate for hawk nesting and land appropriate for hunting in a mosaic shape as well as a good environment for nurturing mountain hawk-eagles in company-owned forests.

Species of mammals and birds confirmed by past surveys
  Managed Area (ha) Verified mammal and avian species
  2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016
Company-owned forests in Shikoku 14,783 Mammals 14       11       10
Birds 31       34       24
Company-owned forests in Kyushu 9,182 Mammals   11       12      
Birds   33       29      
Company-owned forests in Hokkaido 18,199 Mammals     10       9    
Birds     38       40    
Company-owned forests in Honshu
*2013 acquisitions in Okayama, Hyogo, and Mie
*2015 additional acquisitions in Wakayama
4,280 Mammals       12       (Wakayama)
10
(Hyogo)
6
 
Birds       25       (Wakayama)
29
(Hyogo)
21
 
All 46,444
  • * Conducted in two areas in 2015; Wakayama and Hyogo
Japanese deer confirmed in Niihama (Shikoku) forests in 2016

Japanese deer confirmed in Niihama (Shikoku) forests in 2016

Japanese monkeys confirmed in Niihama (Shikoku) forests in 2016

Japanese monkeys confirmed in Niihama (Shikoku) forests in 2016

Page Top

Biodiversity Conservation in Plantation Forests Overseas

Indonesia has the third largest area of rainforest in the world, however, it is said that around 700,000 hectares of forest are lost each year due to such factors as forest fires, illegal logging and slash-and-burn farming. The Sumitomo Forestry Group runs a large-scale plantation in West Kalimantan, Indonesia. The forests are planted and managed using methods suited to each area based on appropriate zoning that takes into account biodiversity considerations.

In fiscal 2012, for the purpose of objectively reviewing the methods used for selecting and managing protected areas set up within the boundary of the plantation site, the Group entered into an advisory agreement with the International Finance Cooperation (IFC), an independent organization and member of the World Bank Group, and in fiscal 2013, identified high conservation value forests (HCVF) areas within the site. The results of this review will be reflected in future business plans. Also in fiscal 2013, the Group acquired PHPL (Sertifikat Pengelolaan Hutan Produksi Lestari), a certification of the Ministry of Forestry of Indonesia for sustainable forest management. In fiscal 2016, the Sustainable Forest Management section of the Indonesia Ministry of Environment and Forestry and the model commercialization entered into a MOU.

Page Top

Toward the Future

The Sumitomo Forestry Group will work to establish forest management in Company-owned forests that also conserves biodiversity by conducting monitoring surveys for mammals and other specified species while promoting greater awareness about the understanding and conservation of rare species.

The Sumitomo Forestry Group will work to establish forest management in Company-owned forests that also conserves biodiversity by conducting monitoring surveys for mammals and other specified species while promoting greater awareness about the understanding and conservation of rare species.

Page Top

CSR Report2017