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Seikatsu Club Climate Crisis Declaration

“Seikatsu Club Climate Crisis Declaration” Formulated for the Realization of a Sustainable Society

Firstly, we would like to offer our heartfelt sympathy and condolences for all those who have been affected or have lost loved ones in the recent unprecedented torrential rains that have struck the whole of Japan, but especially the Kyushu region.

In July 2020, Seikatsu Club Consumers’ Co-operative Union (Head Office: Shinjuku Ward, Tokyo; hereafter “Seikatsu Club”) formulated a “Seikatsu Club Climate Crisis Declaration” to share broadly with many people both in Japan and overseas the fact that the world’s climate is now in a critical state and to work toward the realization of a sustainable society.

At present, in all parts of the world, natural disasters due to the impacts of global heating, such as unusually high temperatures, the increasing power of typhoons and other meteorological phenomena, torrential rains, forest fires, and droughts are becoming progressively more conspicuous.

In the face of this critical situation, Climate Emergency Declarations (CEDs) express the notion that “we acknowledge and publicize the fact that the climate is in an emergency situation and address this as the top priority issue.” Already more than a thousand municipalities, universities and other organizations around the world have adopted such declarations, and beginning with Iki City, Nagasaki Prefecture, 45 municipalities and organizations had adopted CEDs in Japan as of July 2020.

The recently adopted “Seikatsu Club Climate Crisis Declaration” has been formulated in the same spirit as CEDs around the world. Thus far, Seikatsu Club has taken action, for example, on raising domestic self-sufficiency, the reuse of glass bottle containers to promote the recycling of resources, , and the collective purchase of electricity generated from renewable energy sources. In June 2020, based on these activities and the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), we also adopted the “First Seikatsu Club 2030 Action Declaration”, which aims at the resolution of various issues necessary for people to live an abundant life, such as food, the environment and welfare. The “Seikatsu Club Climate Crisis Declaration” is an integral part of these efforts and consists of the following five pillars of practice.

1) Aiming to reduce emissions of CO2 from the co-operative business to as closely as possible to zero by 2050, we will accelerate the realization of the goal of a 40% reduction in CO2 emissions by 2030.

2) We will steadily implement the “First Seikatsu Club 2030 Action Declaration”, which contributes to the attainment of the SDGs, and will upgrade this in 2022 to a Second Action Declaration that will include measures such as a reduction in the use of plastics.

3) For the robust continuation of the “sustainable production and consumption” that is a pillar of the co-operative business, we will take the initiative in adaptations to the climate crisis together with and in relationships of equality with producers.

4) We will publicize both domestically and overseas the significance of renewable energy for avoiding the climate crisis and will increase the numbers of members who use “Seikatsu Club Electricity”, roughly 60% of which is generated from renewable energy sources.

5) We will cooperate with individuals and organizations who share the same aspirations to lobby the Japanese government to raise the 2030 greenhouse gasses emissions reduction goal.

As well as sharing widely the fact that the Earth’s climate has reached a critical state that threatens to shake the foundations of human survival, Seikatsu Club will devote all its energies toward the practice of the above five pillars.

Seikatsu Club Climate Crisis Declaration (Full Text)

Seikatsu Club, while upholding the “goal of a 40% reduction in CO2 emissions by 2030”, based on the Paris Agreement, has also adopted the “First Seikatsu Club 2030 Action Declaration”, which aims at the attainment of the SDGs.

Nevertheless, the Earth’s environment has continued to deteriorate due to the activities of humankind, shaking the foundations of the ability to live with human dignity.

For this reason, we, Seikatsu Club, through this declaration, pledge to share broadly that the world’s climate is now in a critical state and devote all our energies toward the practice of the five pillars stated below.
 

[1] Our Actions thus far Based on the Paris Agreement and SDGs

 
The Paris Agreement, concluded in 2015, has the goal of “limiting global temperature increase since the industrial revolution to within 2 degrees Celsius (while pursuing efforts to limit the increase to 1.5 Celsius) by the second half of this century.” On this basis, in 2018 Seikatsu Club adopted the goal of reducing emissions of CO2 from the co-operative business to as closely as possible to zero by 2050, and the goal of a 40% reduction in CO2 emissions by 2030. In addition, in 2019, we also set autonomous standards on energy conservation and creation to reduce CO2 emissions at the production stage. We are not only aiming to reduce the direct emissions of greenhouse gasses in the co-operative business (scope 1) and indirect emissions due to the use of electricity, etc. (scope 2), but also in other indirect emissions (scope 3).

The June 2020 Seikatsu Club Consumers’ Co-operative Union Annual General Meeting adopted the “First Seikatsu Club 2030 Action Declaration”, based on the Sustainable Development Goals, SDGs, that are the globally shared goals for 2030. Seikatsu Club has thus far, as a consumers’ co-operative which has worked toward a sustainable society, put into practice a long succession of actions that lead on to the 17 goals and 169 targets of the SDGs, such as an increase in domestic self-sufficiency (Goal 2, Goal 12), the reuse of glass bottles (Goal 12), the production of eggs from domestic species and the sustainable production and consumption of chicken meat (Goal 2), the collective purchase of electricity generated from renewable energy sources (Goal 7, Goal 13), and support for persons facing difficulties in daily life, etc. (Goal 3). We have now pledged in the “First Seikatsu Club 2030 Action Declaration” to push forward even further with our efforts thus far through a gathering of co-operative energies with all related people.



[2] Dangers Arising from the Increasingly Deteriorating Earth Environment and Climate Crisis


In recent years, the Earth’s environment has continued to deteriorate due to the activities of humankind, and severe natural disasters due to climate change have become progressively more conspicuous. The foundations of life, such as food, welfare, education and communities, that enable us to live dignified and humane lives are being shaken to the core. 

In 2018, extensive damage occurred in Japan due to torrential rains in the west of the country and due to typhoon No.21, Seikatsu Club producers also suffering serious damage. In 2019, the powerful typhoons No.15, 19 and 21 struck Japan directly in succession, giving rise to horrendous damage over a large area. Many of Seikatsu Club’s producers, individual co-operatives and members suffered severe damage, everyone being stunned into the realization that this was indeed a “climate crisis”.

Yet this was still nothing more than the impact of a 1-degree Celsius rise in the average temperature since the Industrial Revolution. From here on, not only “mitigation” to reduce greenhouse gasses but adaptation to an overheated climate has become an urgent task for all humankind. 

In this situation, it is clear that even with the accumulated greenhouse gas reduction targets submitted by each country based on the Paris Agreement, we will still be far from reaching the goal to be attained, , and all countries are being required to review their targets.

The Japanese government, however, still stubbornly clings to cheap coal thermal power generation while refusing to review its low target for 2030 of a 26% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, a position that is receiving criticism both inside Japan and internationally. 

Furthermore, the tropical rainforests that stand in Brazil and other countries are known as the “lungs of the world”, but the reality in which these forests are being continually destroyed due to the prioritization of economic goals may be pushing the climate toward irreversible changes.

 

[3] To Realize a Sustainable Society

 
In 2018, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), in its Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5°C (SR15) warned that if nothing more were done the 1.5°C temperature rise could be exceeded as early as 2030. IPCC and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) have pointed out that efforts made in this coming ten years are of vital importance. Many of the world’s young people, having to face the lamentable future of the Earth, have raised their voices about “climate justice” in demonstrations.

Now is the time when we must make earnest endeavors toward various choices and transformations to stop further temperature rise as we direct our feelings to the people of the developing world and the children of the future. We wish to transform society from a society based on globalism, dependent on fossil fuels, toward the co-operative society that has autonomous control over renewable energy, and make bold efforts at various systemic changes such as innovative changes in the nature of the food system and urban areas.

Further, while being aware that every single consumer is also being required to alter his or her behavior, and promoting the great transformation of the economy, social system and lifestyle from which there will be no turning back, we aspire to place value on cooperation and mutual support and realize a society that has hope for the future.

For this purpose, Seikatsu Club, while sharing widely the fact that the Earth’s climate is now in a critical state that threatens to shake the foundations of human survival, pledges to devote all its energies toward the practice of the following five pillars.

1) Aiming to reduce emissions of CO2 from the co-operative business to as closely as possible to zero by 2050, we will accelerate the realization of the goal of a 40% reduction in CO2 emissions by 2030.

2) We will steadily implement the “First Seikatsu Club 2030 Action Declaration”, which contributes to the attainment of the SDGs, and will upgrade this in 2022 to a Second Action Declaration that will include measures such as those to reduce the use of plastics.

3) For the robust continuation of the “sustainable production and consumption” that is a pillar of the co-operative business, we will take the initiative in adaptations to the climate crisis together with and in relationships of equality with producers.

4) We will publicize both domestically and overseas the significance of renewable energy for avoiding the climate crisis and will increase the numbers of members who use “Seikatsu Club Electricity”, roughly 60% of which is generated from renewable energy sources.

5) We will cooperate with individuals and organizations who share the same aspirations to lobby the Japanese government to raise the 2030 greenhouse gasses emissions reduction goal.

July 14, 2020
Board of Directors
Seikatsu Club Consumers’ Co-operative Union

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