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Initiatives for eco-conscious factories (Green Factories)
We aim to reduce our environmental impact to as close to zero as possible in all our factories worldwide, and our Green Factories (GFs) are engaged in activities that will help us achieve this goal. Specifically, we include plans to reduce the environmental impacts in our production activities focusing on our factories’ CO2 emissions, total waste generation, and chemical substance releases and transfers in our midterm business plan and business goals, and implement those plans as well as progress control.
We started our internal GF accreditation system in fiscal 2006 to evaluate the activities of our factories and we certify factories that meet certain standards as GFs. After achieving a fiscal 2011 target of 90% or higher GF accreditation rate for all factories in fiscal 2009 and 2010, we upgraded the GF accreditation system to the GF assessment system to further improve the standard of measures implemented across our factories.
Under the upgraded system, our factories evaluate themselves on a one-to-five scale across 15 environmental activity items classified into five groups, and visualize the progress to address issues and make improvements. In addition to the existing indicators of “emissions reduction” and “reduction activities,” “environmental performance strengthening,” “risk reduction,” and “HR development” have been added to promote GFs with a wider view.
Our target was to achieve a “Level 4” average score across the entire Panasonic Group in fiscal 2013, and the reinforcement of initiatives in fiscal 2012 enabled us to achieve a “Level 4” average score. We are determined to reduce environmental impacts and at the same time enhance our management structure through the PDCA of these activities.
Advanced examples of eco-conscious factories
In October 2010, Panasonic opened the Kasai Green Energy Park (GEP)-its newest production factory for lithium-ion batteries for environmentally-conscious vehicles-a leading example of an eco-conscious factory that uses advanced environmental technologies and systems. At Kasai GEP, we installed a one-megawatt Mega Solar System comprising our industry-leading HIT solar battery, the world’s top-class*1 1.5 megawatt-hour lithium-ion Mega Battery System, an energy management system that controls each piece of equipment, and a smart energy system that links and coordinates all systems to optimize the performance of these “energy creating,” “energy storing,” and “energy saving” equipment. Substantiative experiments on efficient energy utilization at Kasai GEP are conducted, and we also use Kasai GEP as a place for product and system development, as well as a place to showcase innovations to customers.
Kasai Green Energy Park was awarded the Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) Minister’s Award in the “Energy-saving by IT” category of the Green IT Award 2011 in October 2011, for its energy conservation efforts through coordinated control of energy creation, storage and conservation devices with IT.
Additionally, the factory has received the highest evaluation rank of “S” based on the CASBEE (Comprehensive Assessment System for Built Environment Efficiency) scale, a methodology to comprehensively assess and rank the environmental performance of buildings.
- *1 Based on battery systems for power storage that combine lithium-ion batteries for consumer use. As of October 2010 (surveyed by Panasonic).
- Kasai Green Energy Park
Winning prizes in recognition of energy saving efforts
In the 23rd Energy Conservation Grand Prizes hosted by the Energy Conservation Center, Japan (ECCJ), Panasonic was awarded the Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry Prize in the energy-saving activities category for the groupwide energy-saving (CO2 reduction) initiatives aimed at integrating environmental contribution with business growth.
In addition, the Appliances Company received the Chairman’s Prize from the ECCJ in recognition of our energy-saving manufacturing of air-conditioner heat exchangers.
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