In recent years, the plastic waste problem has been gaining attention.
Every year, plastics as the same amount as 50,000 airplanes flow out into the ocean, and it is estimated that 150 million tons of plastic are accumulated in the world's ocean.
Many of you may remember the report released by the Ellen Macarthur Foundation in 2016 that "plastic waste spilled into the ocean exceeds the total weight of 800 million tonnes of fish."
In the UK, the official announced that it would "tax the business of producing and importing plastic packaging materials with 30% or less recycled components" (effective from April 2022), and in EU, it already started from January 2021 in line with the recovery plan from pandemics.
In this trend, alternative materials are also appearing, while they are not yet the radical solutions. For example, most plant-derived plastics use edible parts such as corn, and biodegradable plastics are not decomposed as easily as you imagine because they require severe decomposition conditions such as temperature.
Plastics have a number of benefits, such as to keep gloceries edible for longer time, to be a support for hygiene in medical fields, and to reduce transportation energy with their light weight. What is the optimal solution to the circulated structure that creates a new problem when one issue is solved? We need to gather wisdom intersectionally to overcome the situation.
Let us use RuleWatcher to find hints together.
In December 2019, the Dutch Supreme Court issued a groundbreaking court rulling. This is a lawsuit on climate change, with plaintiffs being environmental groups and citizens and defendants being the Dutch government. Plaintiffs complained that the government lowered its CO2 reduction target from 25% to 20%, and after fighting at the Supreme Court, the judiciary accepted the plaintiff's allegations and ordered the government to return to the 25% reduction target.
A notable point of this trial is the link between controlling CO2 emissions and the European Convention on Human Rights. Now the whole world is gradually getting in line with Europe, where citizens take the initiative in seeking decarbonization shown in this case.
Suga administration stated carbon neutral declaration in Japan and President Biden imposed Green Deal policy in the States. China, which is the centerpiece of the effects of the world's climate, has clearly set a goal of decarbonization and is introducing renewable energy at a tremendous pace.
While more attention is paid to new technologies such as hydrogen energy and CCUS, concerns about another environmental impact of these technologies have also been pointed out.
There is little time left until 2030, which is said to be the turning point of climate change. Let us explore what we can do with RuleWatcher to prevent the unsustainable future predicted by the frequent natural disasters of recent years, from becoming a reality.
The effects of climate change are becoming more serious in every corner of the world. Today, we are facing wild fluctuations in temperature, floods, droughts, crop shortages, changes in the distribution areas of plants and animals, and increased health hazards.
Apart from measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions (climate mitigation), the prevention and reduction of damage caused by climate change is called "climate adaptation," and is an important part of countermeasures for climate change.
The fields affected by climate change, such as agriculture, forestry, fisheries, civil engineering, and medical care, are extremely diverse, and it is becoming more and more important for the various parties and experts involved to work together and collaborate beyond expertises.
RuleWatcher provides information on the topic from various countries so that a wide range of specialists can come together to come up with effective measures for tackling climate adaptation.
Water is indispensable for our lives. Since water itself circulates on the earth, it will not disappear, but fresh water is rapidly decreasing. One of the reasons is agriculture, which supports human population of 7 billion. Large-scale irrigated agriculture that draws groundwater is carried out all over the world and the crops are exported to other countries due to the recent globalization of food consumption.
Groundwater has been gradually accumulated over thousands of years, but the amount is rapidly reducing due to over consumption with a large pump at a speed that is many times faster than that of recharge. This phenomenon is accelerated due to deforestation and reduced snowfall associated with climate change, and some people are already forced to leave their land because they cannot cultivate anymore.
Groundwater is not the only problem. There are 263 cross-border rivers called "international rivers" in the world, and it is said that 40% of the world's population lives in that basin. If a dam is built upstream, the amount of water will decrease. Pollution threatens the health of the lower reaches. The risk of conflict over these key international rivers is rapidly increasing.
RuleWatcher is always on the lookout on water issue, our common property. .
It is estimated that between 1992 and 2014, the global stock of natural capital per capita fell by nearly 40% and the extinction rate of living things is the highest in the whole history of living things, which is still continuing to increase. In pararell, there is an incremental number of livestock. In fact, when looking at mammals on the ground by weight, there is a surprising calculation that 96% is livestock, while only 4% left for the rest of the mammals.
It is clear from these figures how human beings have put a devastating burden behind their prosperity. New infectious diseases such as COVID-19 are said to be largely associated with reduced biodiversity, and this crisis poses extreme risks and uncertainties in our lives.
How can we correct the imbalance between human demand and natural supply? How should we protect the existing nature and regenerate the nature that has already been damaged?
RuleWatcher will provide relevant information and place for discussion so that this unsustainable relationship with nature will not be passed on to future generations.
How to make the world sustainable. One of the answers is the circular economy. For 250 years since the Industrial Revolution, we have collected, processed, used and disposed of resources. It is said that breaking out of the current linear economy is the cornerstone of SDGs.
There is a need for an overall design that does not generate any waste or pollution, rather than such singular concept as "recycling" or "3Rs". Relying on renewable energy, minimizing the use of harmful substances and repairing the products again and again. For that, it is necessary to secure an acquisition route for recycled materials, a tracking system for materials and parts, and product specifications that may be disassembled.
We live in an era that conventional wisdom becomes insane. It is a risk, but also a huge business opportunity. Please take advantage of the trends of the global circular economy delivered by RuleWatcher for both your job and personal life.
Blockchain is said to be the most revolutionary technology since the Internet. A simple explanation of blockchain is that it is a system for managing a ledger of transactions that is synchronized across many computers.
There are many things that can be achieved when it becomes clear who a certain value currently belongs to and what the transaction history was in the past. For example, it will be possible to record the details of the supply chain, such as where and how the materials for a product were made, processed, transported, and disposed of. It will also allow rights holders to be properly compensated for things that can be easily reproduced, such as digital content.
The world of finance is said to have the greatest affinity with digital technology. In June 2021, El Salvador became the first country in the world to declare bitcoin a "legal tender.
However, the blockchain still has its challenges. However, there are still challenges to be addressed, such as optimal usage, environmental impact as seen in the massive power consumption, and above all, governance.
Blockchain has the potential to change the way we live. Let's find out how the rules will be formed with RuleWatcher.
It has been said that the system based on capitalism has a limitation, considering the fact that the economic gaps between countries and individuals become larger and larger.
Worldwide, not only short-term solutions such as the basic income and the counter-action for tax heaven, but also radical change of the whole discourse are discussed - how to reset the goals which take GDP as granted.
How should we deal with money that dominates our society? How should we sustain public resources such as water, air, open sea and universe that do not belong to anyone? How should we accelerate mutual assistance, besides public assistance? We catch up with those ranges of issues in Beyond Capitalism.
Basic Income will be renewed to be Beyond Capitalism in order to collect more range of information, from 10th of August, 2021.
Corporate Human Rights
In the UK, amendments are being sought to strengthen the Modern Slavery Act 2015 (as of June 2021).
Slave labor is not a historical event; it still continues in mines, farms, and aquaculture. Many people may be surprised to hear that the number of slaves is the largest in history.
Human rights issues in the rapidly globalizing supply chain are becoming more serious. Needless to say, if companies do not pay attention to human rights, they will not be able to avoid being condemned by the international community.
The International Labour Organization (ILO) calls decent work "productive work that protects rights, generates sufficient income, and provides adequate social protection" and considers it an important concept.
Let RuleWatcher provide you with the latest information on corporate human rights issues so that this simple definition can be applied to all people's work.
Universal Human Rights
"All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood." (Article 1 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights)
It was in 1948 that this declaration was adopted. Coincidentally, this was exactly 100 years after the 1848 revolution that swept across Europe.
Twenty-eight years later, in 1976, "the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights" finally came into force as a multilateral treaty based on the Declaration.
Through this long process, international cooperation on human rights has gradually been achieved. However, the continuous violation of human rights around the world is a sad reality that confirms the weakness of the effectiveness of the treaty.
At RuleWatcher, we follow the progress of human rights around the world, which is a long-cherished dream of humanity but still has a long way to go, and support citizens who aim to create a society where all people can live as a matter of course.
“ESG investment” is catching attention.
Investing in an organization that has management policies and strategies for a sustainable society and addresses the challenges of Environment, Social and Governance-this is ESG investment.
It is also known that investment in companies that are more conscious of social responsibility has stable results even during the financial crisis and recession, and the amount of investment is growing rapidly even in the Corona pandemic.
Looking at the history of ESG investment, we can see the beginning in the UK pension law revised in 2000. It was requested to disclose the investment policy, saying that the pension funds collected from people should be environmentally and socially friendly. After that, the London Principles announced in 2002 introduced the seven principles of investment for sustainability, which after became a concrete action guideline for ESG investment.
ESG investment has become globalized when the United Nations declared the Principles for Responsible Investment (PRI) for Social Responsibility in 2006. In order to realize such responsible investment on the investor's side, it is also necessary to disclose information on the side who receive the investment. During the 2008 financial crisis, it was noted that companies with weak governance would hurt shareholder's interests, calling for a clearer accounting standard.
In 2013, the International Integrated Report Council recommended the submission of an "integrated report" that also discloses non-financial information such as social contributions and environmental measures. Furthermore, since the Paris Agreement (Climate Change Framework Convention), attention to climate change-related risks has increased, and it led to a need for transparency in such risk management.
Since the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD), formed in 2017 by the Financial Stability Board (FSB), provided a way to visualize the financial impact of climate change-related risks and opportunities, information disclosure mechanisms in EU, the UK, Canada, France, China, the United States, Japan, etc. are gradually converging.
In recent years, with a rapid trend, all ESG investment indicators such as environmental influence, those for society, and cooperate governance have begun to seek ways for international standardization.
RuleWatcher Enterprise provides information on disclosures that are important for ESG investment engagement measures.
It is important that your privacy is protected.
On the other hand, many people have witnessed that the protection of personal information is not prioritized for public welfare such as public health. Even in "smart cities" that are being promoted around the world, personal information is scheduled to be used for various services on a data linkage platform in order to realize an optimized society. In the United States and other countries, solutions that use facial recognition data to prevent crimes are attracting attention.
Society, well-being and privacy.
In the age of big data, how much of the sharing of personal information should we allow that we should have at our hands? And how should organizations that handle personal information capture regulatory trends in this area of extreme delicacy and rapid technological innovation?
Following the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), Asian countries are also updating their laws for personal information protection. Discussions have begun on the federal-wide adoption of the "Biological Information Privacy Act," which is in force in some states of the United States.
RuleWatcher Enterprise also emphasizes this area, which will become more important in the future, and strives to visualize the legal process in the world.