Climate Change / Energy
English to Japanese translation: WWF report on responsible investmentCategory: Language
Keyword: Research report / Guidelines、Translation
Client: WWF Singapore
In January 2021, WWF published the results of its 2021 report on responsible investment practices, titled RESPOND (Resilient and Sustainable Portfolios that Protect Nature and Drive Decarbonization).
We translated the report into Japanese under the supervision of a Japanese-native editor from WWF.
We did thorough research on technical terms on responsible investment, and ensured consistency in the entire report. Japanese language has three types of letters: hiragana, katakana and kanji. Our first draft used terms in kanji for “asset manager(s)” and “asset owner(s)” because it is reader-friendly in general.
The supervisor changed them into katakana, which is used primarily for foreign words and names of persons from countries other than Japan. He explained the reason that as the target readers of the report are financial professionals, who are more familiar with those terms in English, they would clearly understand the relationship between asset owners, asset managers and portfolio companies. We shared this feedback with our translation team members, which reminded us of the importance of clearly understanding the target audience to choose words that best fit the context.
Aiming for smooth communication with the authors of the report, we did all exchange of emails and comments in English.
The RESPOND report is based on a TCFD-aligned framework developed by WWF to help Asia-based asset managers strengthen their responsible investment practices to meet their clients’ expectations both now, and in the future. The report accompanies an update to the RESPOND online interactive platform that lets stakeholders explore the analysis in more detail. By using the RESPOND tool and framework, asset managers can better play a pivotal role in the transition towards a sustainable and net-zero economy.
The report shows that while Japanese asset managers lead the way in Asia, Asian asset managers fall behind European peers in their ESG practices.
We believe that the Japanese version of the report will be useful to Japanese investors who are seeking to enhance their responsible investment practices. Through their investments, they can shift financial flows away from unsustainable activities and towards climate-resilient and nature-positive business models that align with the Paris Agreement, contribute to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and overall support the protection and restoration of natural capital.
Press Release: ASIA ASSET MANAGERS NEED TO DO MORE TO ADDRESS CLIMATE CHANGE AND NATURE LOSS, ACCORDING TO WWF REPORT (January 27, 2021, WWF Singapore)
Photo by JAY PARK via Pixabay
Producing communication tools for long-term environmental visionCategory: Content
Keyword: communication tool
Client: Global housing equipment manufacturer
Background: Effectively convey the 2050 long-term environmental vision
In order to align with the goals of the Paris Agreement, more and more companies are setting long-term environmental visions that aim for the year 2050.
This global corporate client approached us after updating their current 2030 targets and setting new 2050 targets. They requested us to create communication tools that can clearly convey the contents and aims of the new goals to their major stakeholders: employees and investors.
Our approach: Refine key messages through the creation of key visuals
For our deliverables, we agreed to produce a leaflet that clearly conveys the contents of their long-term environmental vision, as well as key visuals that the company can use for communication in various situations.
The central idea was that the key visuals will present the world that the long-term environmental vision is aiming for. We went through more than 10 design pattern proposals, while discussing patterns and colors to clarify the key messages, and then reflecting them back in the design.
Outcome: Launching corporate education with a visually understandable leaflet
Our end product was a 12-page leaflet written in Japanese and English. Instead of detailed explanations, we focused on clearly communicating the basics as well as conveying the sense of purpose and direction towards achieving their environmental vision.
Going forward, the client intends to use the leaflet to raise awareness within the company that will help lead to concrete actions.
Translation into Japanese: Report on coal power and biomass in JapanCategory: Language
Client: Mighty Earth
We translated the report Sumitomo Corporation’s Dirty Energy Trade: Biomass, Coal, and Japan’s Future, published by Mighty Earth, a global campaign organization that works to protect the environment, focusing on the big issues: conserving threatened landscape like tropical forests, oceans, and solving climate change.
While utilizing our knowledge of terminology accumulated through many years’ works in the area of climate change and energy, we also referred to credible sources in translating all the new terms and names of companies and specialized agencies that appeared frequently in the report. When submitting our translation, we made sure to share the information with the client.
We paid particular attention to numbers, checking the cited sources, and suggested accurate and clear ways of writing in Japanese. For example, when the report said something “increased by XX %” while the source said it was “X.X times more” in addition to the percentage, we included both numbers in our translation.
Aiming for smooth communication, we did all exchange of emails and comments in English with the person in charge of the report who was a native English speaker.
According to this report, Japan’s energy policies result in the development of new coal power plants, and also allow existing inefficient coal power plants to keep running by burning biomass together with coal, a practice known as cofiring. The report depicts Japan as the world’s major consumer of biomass, which had not been addressed much before, and reports in detail how Japan’s energy policies are contributing to the destruction of valuable ecosystems such as rare wetlands and forests around the world.
In order to realize a decarbonized society, it is crucial that all businesses exit from or phase out all kinds of coal business, including coal development, construction of new coal power plants home or abroad, and investments in these projects. International investors consider investments in such projects as a risk; continuing with these businesses might result in damaging their corporate value as well as their corporate sustainability.
Furthermore, the World Health Organization (WHO) indicates that Covid-19 has an zoonotic source: an ecological origin in bat populations, while environmental organizations and experts point out that the virus spreading to humans from an animal host has much to do with climate change and environmental destruction as well (Tokyo Shimbun, April 9, 2020, in Japanese).
We strongly expect a radical change of course in Japan’s energy policies in order to stop the degradation of the environment, which is the foundation of our society and economy.
New Investigation: Sumitomo Corporation’s Dirty Energy Investments Highlight Japan’s Failure to Act on Climate (Mighty Earth)
Media release (Mighty Earth, December 10, 2019, in Japanese)
Infographics for Long-Term Scenarios for Decarbonizing JapanCategory: Content
Keyword: Design content、Infographics、Long- or mid-term planning、Public relations material / Copywriting、Research report / Guidelines
Client: WWF Japan
WWF Japan published in February 2017 its analysis report “Long-Term Scenarios for Decarbonizing Japan,” which shows analysis on a 100% renewable energy scenario and a bridge scenario. We at EcoNetworks helped create infographics for the report.
Infographics are an effective tool to attract the interest of a wider audience. We worked on selecting key points from an elaborate analysis that are essential to building long-term scenarios, and combining words and pictures to tell a story quickly, concisely, and in an entertaining manner.
WWF published the infographics on their website, and distributed them as handouts at the conference to announce the scenarios.
See the executive summary of the report below:
LONG-TERM SCENARIOS FOR DECARBONIZING JAPAN
Executive Summary WWF Japan (Feb 2017)
Japanese edition of Global Biodiversity Outlook 4 (GBO4)Category: Language
Keyword: Research report / Guidelines、Translation
Client: Japan's Ministry of the Environment
In October 2014, the Convention on Biological Diversity published Global Biodiversity Outlook 4 (GBO-4), a periodic report that summarizes the latest data on the status and trends of biodiversity. EcoNetworks supported its English-to-Japanese translation. The Japanese report is available online here.
Translation of the book on climate risks and adaptationCategory: Language
Keyword: Research report / Guidelines、Translation
Client: Sompo Environmental Foundation
In March 2014, Sompo Environmental Foundation (Former Sompo Japan Nipponkoa Environmental Foundation) published a book titled “How Should We Adapt Climate Change Risks?: Smart Adaptation for Businesses, Governments, and Grassroots Organizations.” EcoNetworks supported abridged Japanese to English translation of the book.
This book introduces initiatives toward climate change risks taken by a wide variety of stakeholders. It also explains about weather derivatives (weather index insurance), financial instruments developed based on a risk financing approach and adaptation to climate change by insurance companies.
– Initiatives in the Insurance Sector: Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation Efforts by Sompo Japan
– The Task Ahead for Japan
There are excellent examples in Japan to reduce climate change risks by integrating practical measures into the economic systems. See the abridged English translation at: https://www.sompo-ef.org/about/pdf/all.pdf
Communication office for Panasonic 100 Thousand Solar Lanterns ProjectCategory: Engagement
Keyword: Communication office、Public relations material / Copywriting、Sustainability website
Client: Panasonic Corporation
Panasonic Corporation, a Japanese electronics company, is celebrating its 100th anniversary in 2018. To commemorate that, the company launched 100 Thousand Solar Lanterns Project in 2009, which aimed to give 100,000 solar lanterns to off-grid communities by 2018.
To call public attention to the reality of people in developing countries living without electricity, and to raise awareness of potential solutions to this issue, EcoNetworks has been supporting the project with its external communications since 2013.
We are specifically involved in creating attractive content for their website and Facebook page to update on project progress, and serving as a contact point for the recipient organizations of solar lanterns. We are working for the smooth operation of the project from the standpoints of off-grid communities, partner NGOs, and the company.
To get as many people as possible involved in this movement, to assist the self-reliance of local people beyond a mere donation, and to advance the resolution of many issues in communities without electricity, we are doing our best to make the project beneficial to both the donor and the recipients.