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Environmental Management

Promotion of Environment Conservation Efforts Together with the Global Environmental Committee

Reinforcement of Operations through Cooperation between Global Environmental Committee and Department Environmental Committees

Based on our Environmental Declaration and Basic Environmental Policies, Akebono has built an Environmental Management System aiming to reduce risks, such as air pollution. Reduction of CO2 emissions, recycling of industrial waste as well as measures to save resources and energy are taken into consideration to ensure high environmental efficiency of our business activities. Lead by the Global Environmental Committee, each department's committees and subcommittees work together to support biodiversity and engage in global environment preservation efforts.

Environmental and CSR Management System

Environmental and CSR Management System
  • *1 SOC (Substance of Concern): Environmentally hazardous substances, including mercury, cadmium, lead and hexavalent chromium
  • *2 VOC (Volatile Organic Compound): Toluene and xylene are representative of this group’s compounds, which are suspected of involvement in the development of substances that cause health concerns, including oxidant and airborne particulate matters
  • *3 LCA (Life Cycle Assessment): A technique for analyzing and assessing the environmental impact associated with the entire life cycle of a product (mining of materials, manufacturing, use, recycling and disposal)
  • *4 PRTR (Pollutant Release and Transfer Register): Japan’s Act on Confirmation, etc. of Release Amounts of Specific Chemical Substances in the Environment and Promotion of Improvements to the Management Thereof (PRTR Act) was passed into law in 1999 and enforced in 2001. Under the law, business operators which handle more than a certain amount of specified chemical substances are required to submit reports to the competent minister annually.
  • *5 3R: Acronym for reduce, reuse and recycling of resources, activities that contribute to a recycling society
  • *6 Zero-emissions: Proposed by the United Nations University in 1994, a system wherein companies aim to emit no waste, engaging rather in resource recycling and the effective utilization of waste
  • *7 Green purchasing: Affirmative selection and acquisition of products that impose less negative environmental impact; scope includes materials used in products as well as secondary materials used in the course of manufacturing. The manufacture of “Green Products” requires the practice of green purchasing.

Environmental Targets and Results

Under the guidance of the Global Environmental Committee, each department establishes mid-term and yearly targets for environmental initiatives. In addition, an education system has been established to enhance environmental awareness and help each associate realize his or her role in the environment preservation efforts. We provide ongoing education promoting volunteer behavior, with results evaluated annually to encourage further improvements in the following year.

Environmental Targets for Fiscal 2015 and Results Achieved

Initiatives Medium- and long-term Targets Targets for Fiscal 2015 Results Achieved in Fiscal 2015 Evaluation Plans for Fiscal 2016 and After
R&D Promotion of products containing no substances of concern (SOCs) Complete the conversion to lead-free sintered material by 2020 (for local and bullet trains) Further promote a changeover to the lead-free sintered material for applicable categories of rolling stock

Develop lead-free materials that suit for other categories of rolling stock
Lead-free rate is 55% as of fiscal 2015 (46% the previous fiscal year)

Completed the development of a lead-free sintered material (not applicable to certain categories of rolling stock)

Promoted a changeover of conventional materials to a lead-free material Lead-free rate is 46% as of fiscal 2014
Further promote a changeover to the lead-free sintered material for applicable categories of rolling stock

Develop lead-free materials that suit for other categories of rolling stock
Production Reduction of total CO2 emissions at production plants in Japan Improve CO2 intensity more than 1% Improve CO2 intensity more than 1% every year Improved CO2 emission intensity by 5.1% compared with fiscal 2014 through a changeover of oil fired boilers to heat pumps and the application of thermal barrier coatings to building rooftops Collect information globally on CO2 reducing measures and energy-saving technologies
Continue ISO14001-related activities and improve environmental management system Continue to enhance environmental activities Firmly root ISO14001 in operations and steadily renew certifications Renewed the ISO14001 certifications at four sites, including Akebono Brake (Thailand) Co., Ltd. Continue to firmly root ISO14001 in operations and steadily renew certifications
Promotion of zero-emission activities at production sites: eliminate direct landfill disposal Maintain zero emissions Maintain zero emissions; generate no direct landfill disposal Maintained zero emissions; generate no direct landfill disposal Continue to maintain zero emissions; generate no direct landfill disposal
Environmental Education Environmental training center Nurture human resources to disseminate environmental preservation methods to locations nationwide through training programs implemented at Environmental training center Get feedback from the trainees and reflect it in the program In response to comments that the program was overly technical, we introduced simpler experiments, such as making the volume of CO2 gas visible by collecting it in plastic bags, in this way offering a greater degree of choice to the trainees

Started introducing the online education program implemented at ABCT (United States) to Japan
Get feedback from the trainees and reflect it in the program
Logistics Response to revised Energy Conservation Law
(energy saving obligation of cargo owners)
Reduce unit energy consumption 1% on a year-on-year basis Continue efforts to reduce unit energy consumption 1% on a year-on-year basis Reduced CO2 emissions from logistics by 4.8% on a year-on-year basis

<Improvements>
  • Eco-friendly driving activities and seminars
  • Introduced the real-time management system of truck operations
Continue efforts to reduce unit energy consumption 1% or more on a year-on-year basis
Purchasing Promotion of green purchasing Establish structure that ensures purchasing activities in line with the Green Purchasing Guidelines Revise supplier quality management (SQM) standard manuals Conducted research in tandem with suppliers into the possibility of materials that use fewer environmental impact substances and require lower energy input with the aim of making concrete proposals for new material development

Carried out the following revisions to SQM standard manuals to ensure the greater understanding of suppliers with regard to the Company’s approach to environmental impact substance reduction

Enhanced GADSL*1 explanations

Provided clearer descriptions of procedures for the handling of environmental impact substances
Encourage suppliers to upgrade their environmental management systems

Continue supply chain survey using IMDS*2
Production Engineering Promotion of resource-saving design Develop manufacturing facilities that are reusable, achieving a greater yield ratio, energy saving and eco-friendly operations, thereby realizing environmentally friendly manufacturing Further enhance energy-saving and resource-saving technologies Completed installation of next-generation facilities at Fukushima Manufacturing to realize a 70% improvement to energy efficiency of sintering process in metal disk production Further enhance energy-saving and resource-saving technologies
  • *1 Global Automotive Declarable Substance List
  • *2 International Material Data System used by automobile industry to report data on materials

Refer to the following for performance data for each principal company.
Akebono Environmental Data by Principal Company in Japan(PDF download 110 KB, 5 pages)