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Hitachi uses water in such production processes as cleaning, cooling, and painting. To reduce water usage through greater efficiency, we are enhancing our level of water management by installing flow meters at more locations, introducing wastewater treatment devices to increase the use of recycled water, and upgrading water supply facilities at our business sites.
Different countries and regions are affected by water-related issues in different ways, so we devise appropriate countermeasures for each region. Our business sites in China, India, and the Philippines, for example, are striving to reduce the volume of water used by strengthening measures against water leakage.
In fiscal 2016, we set a target of a 23% reduction (over the base year of fiscal 2005) for water usage per unit at our 204 global sites and achieved a 27% reduction.
Hitachi has set a target of enhancing water usage efficiency in fiscal 2050 by 50% compared to fiscal 2010. We will aim to realize a resource efficient society by maintaining appropriate management of our business-related water usage and taking measures to solve each region's water-related issues, such as by reducing water intake quantity and promoting the circulative use of water through the purification and reuse of wastewater.
Recirculation System Flowchart for Pure Water Used in Rinsing
Hitachi Vehicle Energy has reduced the amount of water used in manufacturing lithium-ion batteries for hybrid vehicles by circulating and reusing the pure water*1 utilized in rinsing. Deionized water that has been used in the rinsing process is mixed with makeup water (deionized water) in a recirculation tank, and then subjected to ultraviolet decomposition, filtering, and ion exchange. Through this cycle, it can be repeatedly used as rinse water. As a result, industrial wastewater and water usage have been slashed by more than 99%, compared with the amount used before the system was introduced.
An automatic washing machine acceptance test.
Shanghai Hitachi Household Appliances produces about 1 million automatic washing machines each year and uses large amounts of water in quality checks during acceptance tests. To reduce the amount of water used, the company spent six months conducting repeated surveys, checks, improvements, and verifications and located the places where water was leaking through the monitoring of underground pipes and the installation of more meters. It implemented water-saving activities, replacing leaking underground pipes and repairing and updating air conditioning equipment. As a result, the company now uses only half the water it did in the past. To prevent the recurrence of water leaks, the pipe routing was changed so that pipes are now above ground with fewer joints.