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Office Environmental Initiatives

Eco-friendly Office Buildings

Being a dynamically growing company, in 2008 Akebono completed the construction of ACP (Akebono Central Pier) - a new office in Chubu region. The office building is equipped with an air-conditioning system utilizing subterranean water to reduce CO2 emissions.

Another eco-friendly office building completed in the same year - our new Global Headquarters in Nihonbashi, Tokyo - was equipped with roof-mounted solar panels. They generate enough electricity to power three elevators during the day. The building also uses rainwater for toilet flushing, which allows us to save more than 1,300 tons of water per year (which is equal to roughly 10% of our total general service water usage). In addition, glass panels with excellent insulation properties (low emissivity or low-e glass) are used on the eastern face of the building to improve thermal efficiency of the building and help reduce CO2 emissions.

Apart from the above, multiple environmental initiatives are being undertaken in all our locations to reduce energy usage and carbon dioxide emissions. Please refer to “AKEBONO REPORT” for details.

Chubu Office

Chubu Office

Solar panel installed at the new Nihonbashi building

Solar panel installed at the new Nihonbashi building

Receiving Class I Certification as an Excellent Large-Scale Business Facility

In fiscal 2013, Ai-City received Class I (semi-top level) certification as an “excellent large-scale business facility” under the cap-and trade emissions trading system handled by the Saitama prefectural government to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Akebono has been pursuing highly eco-efficient operations to contribute to the preservation of the global environment. Following the 2011 introduction of the cap-and-trade emissions trading system in Saitama Prefecture, the Company went on to apply for the certification of “excellent large-scale business facility” (Plant Category) in fiscal 2012 and obtained Class II certification. In fiscal 2013, Akebono applied for and successfully obtained the Class I certification in the Office Category even though this category requires applicants to meet even higher standards for management system and facilities operations as well as a forward-looking management approach.

Prize-Winning Initiative in the Utilization of a Cogeneration System

Ai-City received an “Excellent Prize” in the Fiscal 2013 Cogeneration Grand Awards (Industrial-Use Category). This award program sponsored by the Advanced Cogeneration and Energy Utilization Center JAPAN with the aim of recognizing forward looking initiatives and technologies that advance the development of cogeneration systems highly capable of contributing to energy savings. Among the 37 corporations that applied for the fiscal 2013 selection, only four applicants won Excellent Prizes. This accomplishment attests to the Company's contributions to the reduction of energy use, especially during peak demand hours, through the utilization of cogeneration systems employing the heat of recovered steam.

Rooftop water sprinklers

Rooftop water sprinklers
Sprinklers wet rooftops with water drawn from wells, mitigating rises in indoor temperatures

Green curtain

Green curtain
Vines such as bitter melon and loofah are planted along the wall of the cafeteria, filtering the sunlight and thus helping to reduce the need for air conditioning

Certificate

Certificate
Akebono will continue to pursue greater energy efficiency, aiming for the top level of certification

Awarded Judging Committee’s Special Prize at Energy Conservation Awards

At the Energy Conservation Awards (energy conservation practices category) sponsored by The Energy Conservation Center, Japan (with support from the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry), Akebono won the Judging Committee’s Special Prize for initiatives to maximize efficient utilization of cogeneration systems in office buildings.

The Energy Conservation Awards recognize the activities of enterprises in Japan promoting energy conservation or developing products with exceptional energy efficiency. The awards seek to raise awareness of energy conservation further, promoting energy efficient products, developing energy efficient industries, and helping to build a more energy efficient society. The award was made in recognition of the energy conservation and generation initiatives being conducted at Ai-City (headquarters and R&D site), which include the following.

  • Introduced steam-powered binary generators and compressors with installation of gas engine generators and waste gas boilers, and increased generating efficiency by fully utilizing waste heat (steam) from gas engine generators using binary power generation
  • Utilized renewable energy including solar-powered hot water facilities and photovoltaic power generation
  • Reduced solar radiation load by coating roofs with a thermal barrier
  • Made energy use visible through use of a building energy management system (BEMS)
  • Increased efficiency of air conditioners
  • Increased efficiency of lighting

 Through these initiatives, Akebono has reduced energy consumption by 1,034 kiloliters per year on a crude oil-equivalent basis and 1,603 tons year on a CO2-equivalent basis.