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Used product recycling in Japan
In response to the Home Appliance Recycling Law of 2001, which covers four specified kinds of home appliances, we developed a geographically dispersed recycling network through the effective use of existing recycling facilities nationwide. A recycling management company operates all the recycling-related services, including supervising 378 designated collection sites and 36 recycling facilities, on behalf of the “Group A” manufacturers (22 companies including Panasonic). Our recycling factories, PETEC and PETECK, conduct unique research to improve our recycling processes for more efficient treatment of the four kind of home appliances*1 and for the recovery and supply of more resources. In fiscal 2012, we recycled approx. 164,000 tons of the four specified home appliances.
- *1 Air conditioners, TVs, refrigerators/freezers, and washing machines/clothes dryers.
For designing products of easy recycling
Designing products that can be easily recycled is essential to achieving a high recycling rate,*2 quickly and at a low cost. Toward this end, it is important to identify how products should be improved. Panasonic product designers are currently working on that issue. Individual products are made up of a variety of components. The designers themselves are performing dismantling tests on existing products and prototypes to investigate how long it takes to dismantle each component, as well as the quality and weight of the components. Panasonic has developed software that easily calculates the recycling rate and cost based on these data, and is utilizing this information to improve the recycling rate, starting from the design phase.
The test dismantling of products has already been completed on about 140 models, and we are accumulating data on recycling technology and know-how.
- *2 Recycling rate; The Japanese Law for Recycling of Specified Kinds of Home Appliances defines this as “weight of components and materials that can be sold or are transferable without charge / product weight.”
Mobile recycle network
In Japan, Panasonic engages in independent mobile phone collection and recycling initiatives through the Mobile Recycle Network, a group made up of carriers and mobile phone manufacturers.
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