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Our global environmental management system supports environmental decision making and implementation at Hitachi, Ltd. and 864 consolidated subsidiaries (a total of 865 companies).
The CSR and Environmental Strategy Division is responsible for developing Group-wide environmental policies. Important items related to environmental initiatives are deliberated by the Executive Sustainability Committee, established in 2017; it is chaired by the president of Hitachi, Ltd., and its members include top Hitachi executives. The environmental strategy officers from business units and major Group companies ensure that the Hitachi Group Environmental Action Plan approved by the executive officer in charge of environmental concerns is implemented throughout the Group. Eco-Management Meetings, reorganized in 2017, promote long-term targets, set goals for the Environmental Action Plan, develop ways to achieve them, and endorse initiatives to be carried out by the Group as a whole. Outside Japan, we assign regional specialists to report on the progress of the Environmental Action Plan and share information on the latest environmental regulations while exchanging views on local environmental issues during meetings held once or twice a year in each region.
We have established environmental management criteria to ensure efficient management of each business site's environmental load. There are approximately 200 business sites that meet these criteria, and these, together with the CSR and Environmental Strategy Division, have developed and implemented the Hitachi Group Environmental Promotion Organization EMS (environmental management system) to promote the consistent implementation of environmental policies. At the same time, every business site meeting the aforementioned criteria for environmental management continues to maintain ISO 14001 certification. Certification is also being pursued at business sites that do not yet meet the criteria. In conjunction with the issuance of ISO 14001: 2015, business sites that acquired certification prior to this version have been working to align their environmental management systems with the 2015 update. As of March 2017, approximately 25% of business sites have completed this task. The transition will be steadily promoted with an eye to meeting the September 2018 deadline.
|Number of Certified Sites*1||250|
For effective environmental management, we collect data on the environmental performance of business operations using the Environmental Data Aggregation System.
The system was upgraded in fiscal 2016, and it now supports multiple languages and is able to directly register environmental load data from some 1,200 Hitachi business sites worldwide on items such as energy use, CO2 emissions, and waste generation, as well as whether it falls under relevant environmental laws and regulations. The collected data will be aggregated and analyzed at the CSR and Environmental Strategy Division where we will identify environmental management issues, share instructive examples within the Group, and improve environmental practices.
At the approximately 200 business sites that meet Hitachi's environmental management criteria, we collect and analyze data on such key items as energy, waste materials, and water on a monthly and quarterly basis so that the environmental management levels can be further increased.
We use our own evaluation system, GREEN 21, to improve the level and quality of our environmental activities. It divides the targets of the Environmental Action Plan into six categories and evaluates achievements. A perfect score for any category is 100 green points (GPs), and each item is assessed on a scale from 1 to 5.
Starting in fiscal 2016, activities reflecting an eagerness to stimulate environmental action have been taken into consideration as an additional scoring criterion. Our fiscal 2016 comprehensive evaluation was 265 GPs against the target of 240 GPs. For fiscal 2017, we will continue to promote environmental activities to achieve the target of 360 GPs.
We conduct Environmentally Conscious Design Assessments for all products and services involving a design process to ensure environmentally conscious design and development. Thirty environment-related areas are assessed for their impact on climate change, resource depletion, and environmental pollution (ecosystem degradation) at each stage of the product life cycle with a view to reducing the environmental burden. To meet the IEC 62430*1 criteria for environmentally conscious design, in addition to implementing these assessments, we are advancing environmentally conscious design and development by integrating this process into our existing management system, such as by keeping abreast of environmental regulations and ascertaining the environment-related needs of our stakeholders. We conduct life cycle assessments (LCAs) focusing on our main, priority products to quantitatively evaluate their burden on the global environment in such areas as the consumption of mineral resources, fossil fuels, and water resources, as well as their impact on global warming and air pollution. The results of such LCAs are disclosed to our stakeholders and utilized in improving the design of next-generation products.
To reduce the environmental burden of our business activities, since fiscal 2011 the CSR and Environmental Strategy Division has implemented an Eco-Factories & Offices Select certification program for business sites that promote activities demonstrating a high level of environmental consciousness and produce notable results in that area. This helps raise the environmental awareness of employees and promote environmentally conscious business activities.
Based on certification criteria that were developed for our manufacturing (factory) and nonmanufacturing (office) divisions globally, we certify existing factories that actively engage in improvements to achieve efficient production and new offices that have been environmentally designed from the start. Superior policies from certified factories and offices are shared with the entire Group, with other locations encouraged to implement them as well. To maintain and raise the level of environmental awareness through Eco-Factories & Offices Select, certified factories and offices are re-evaluated every fiscal year to confirm that their performance continues to meet requirements. In fiscal 2016, 9 facilities were newly certified and 67 facilities had their certifications renewed. The total number of certified factories and offices was 76.
The newly constructed manufacturing line.
The Hitachi Chemical Group's Hitachi Chemical Energy Technology (Vietnam) manufactures lead-acid batteries in Vietnam, and has constructed a new, efficient manufacturing line to reduce energy consumption. In conventional manufacturing lines, electric power consumption is particularly high during the formation and charging processes. By integrating these processes to reduce the amount of electric power consumed and by eliminating the LPG used in washing and drying processes, CO2 originating from fossil fuels was reduced about 60% on the new line. In this way CO2 emissions from the plant were reduced by 2,880 t-CO2 compared to fiscal 2015. The washing process could also be eliminated from the new line, cutting down on the amount of water used. Construction of the new line was done using the Joint Crediting Mechanism (JCM).
Tsuchiura Works East Building and the Hitachi UH03 hydraulic excavator, which is included in the list of Japan's Mechanical Engineering Heritage.
Hitachi Construction Machinery uses a network of Japanese and international affiliates centered on four main plants in Japan to produce construction machinery and its principal components. Together with energy reductions during use as these products switch to electric or hybrid power, efforts throughout the network are also being made to reduce energy consumption in the manufacturing stage.
The entire Hitachi Construction Machinery Group continues to implement energy-saving measures and promote greater efficiency in plant and office lighting and air-conditioning. Several locations have also introduced IoT technology to further reduce energy consumption and raise productivity. Specifically, by adopting the Energy and Equipment Management Service, a key solution concept under Hitachi's Lumada IoT platform to comprehensively control energy data and equipment across multiple business facilities, they are able to efficiently analyze and manage electric power data gathered from equipment at each plant. Energy usage by the machine tools, robots, and other production equipment used in plants is finely controlled, reducing standby power and increasing energy efficiency.
With these efforts the energy use per unit has been decreased 32% compared with fiscal 2010 at the company's main plants in Ibaraki Prefecture, contributing to a significant reduction in electric power costs.