March 26, 2024

For Sekisui House, home is where the start is

Yoshihiro Nakai
Representative Director of the Board President, Executive Officer, CEO

Since its foundation in 1960, Sekisui House Ltd. has centered its business on home building. We pursued safety and peace of mind in our first three decades, and comfort and the environment in the following three. Currently, in our third three-decade phase, we are focusing on happiness through housing. We have established “make home the happiest place in the world” as our global vision. To create homes that help customers achieve happiness in the era of 100-year life spans, we also have set three material issues for managing the company: “the creation of high-quality housing stock,” “contributing to a sustainable society” and “diversity and inclusion.” These are the missions we believe we should fulfill. We believe that the sustainability efforts we make in our core business, along with our stance on deepening customers’ understanding of sustainability, were a major factor in our now gaining recognition.

The international agreement for decarbonization under the Paris Agreement calls for achieving global net-zero emissions by 2050, and the housing industry is required to make efforts to help achieve that goal. For our part, we have been working to decarbonize our business activities from a global perspective. This has included participation in international initiatives such as the Science Based Targets initiative and the RE100 initiative for 100% renewable electricity, plus the disclosure of information in line with the framework laid out by the Task Force on Climate-Related Financial Disclosures and participation in the Global Alliance for Buildings and Construction.

Firstly, net-zero-energy housing (ZEH) is the centerpiece of our measures to decarbonize our housing products. By the end of fiscal 2022, ZEH had come to represent 93% of the detached homes we built, and orders for such rental housing totaled 25,000 units. Since 2023, all of the condominiums we have built are ZEH.

Next, in our group’s business activities, in fiscal 2022 we achieved a reduction in carbon dioxide emissions of about 50% from the level in 2013. The target has since been raised to 75%. In order to further promote the use of renewable energy, a significant contributor to this reduction, we are working to electrify company vehicles plus factory equipment that uses fossil fuels. In addressing Scope 3 indirect emissions, we are asking key suppliers to set and commit to science-based reduction targets on materials that involve large emissions. These are some examples of specific actions we are undertaking to help achieve net-zero emissions for our society, working with our stakeholders.

On the issue of forests, we established our Wood Procurement Guidelines in 2007 and have created the FairWood initiative on using legal and sustainable wood. It aims at not only maintaining a stable supply of wood, a renewable resource, but also achieving a positive impact through sustainable forest management that goes beyond the mere avoidance of illegal logging by using our position as one of Japan’s major consumers of wood to influence members of our supply chain on an ongoing basis. We are thus working to improve our procurement levels while also maintaining engagement with both international environmental NGOs and industry insiders.

In the area of biodiversity, we have been working on the Gohon no Ki (“five trees”) project, an ecosystem-conscious approach to gardening and landscaping based on the idea that “three trees are for birds, two trees are for butterflies, and all are local native tree species.” With understanding from customers, we have planted over 19 million trees nationwide, mainly species native to each region. Subsequent research conducted jointly with University of the Ryukyus professor Yasuhiro Kubota found that the project had the potential to double the number of bird species and increase the number of butterfly species fivefold that residential districts can attract.

Going forward, in accordance with the guidelines set out by the Taskforce on Nature-related Financial Disclosures, we aim to actively disclose information on risks and opportunities in the use of natural capital.

We believe that efforts on climate change and the conservation of natural capital should be made in all relevant fields — including forests, water security and the circular economy — at the same time. We are committed to taking action on helping make our society sustainable by working on issues with our customers, employees, group companies and suppliers under the slogan “innovation and communication,” aiming to create new value by bringing together ideas and creativity.

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