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Since April 2010 when the 'eco ideas' Declaration in Latin America was announced, we have accelerated environmental contribution to achieve the targets listed in the Declaration.
One of the targets was to double the sales of Superior GPs that feature the industry's environmental performance by March 2013 in comparison with fiscal 2010, which was11.4% per total sales. The results significantly exceeded the target by already achieving a ratio of 24% of Superior GP sales in fiscal 2012. The target of CO2 emission reduction in production activities was also successful, resulting in a reduction by approx. 6,400-tons in fiscal 2013 (approx. 28% less compared with fiscal 2006) thanks to intense energy conservation activities in all the factories and sites operated in Latin America. We are also focusing on environmental education for the next generation and collaborative environmental conservation activities with local communities. We continue to take initiatives in grass-root environmental contribution.
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In September 2012 Panasonic do Brazil Limitada (PANABRAS) launched a new white-goods factory to manufacture refrigerators and washing machines in the city of Extrema, Minas Gerais State, Brazil. Through its declaration to implement rigorous eco-conscious measures from design to production, the factory became our first 'eco ideas' Factory in Latin America. The facilities will pursue environmental contribution in the fields of products, manufacturing, and community contribution.
In terms of products, the factory manufactures items equipped with the ECONAVI functionality offering superior energy-saving performance. Brazilian customers can enjoy a comfortable and environmentally sound lifestyle through these products. In the manufacturing field, other than installing a state-of-art energy-saving production system in the factory, energy usage status is monitored in real time across over 150 facilities, strictly minimizing energy losses. Water conservation measures are also in place. Rain water and recycled wastewater are used for toilets to achieve effective water recycling. The city of Extrema is one of the important water resources for Sao Paulo, the largest city in Brazil, and there is a spring even inside the factory premises. Working together with the Extrema Environmental Bureau, PANABRAS has made environmental provisions to retain the spring and its water quality by planting native trees, taking account of local biodiversity. In the field of community contribution, PANABRAS is planning to offer an environmental education program to children in the area utilizing our own education materials—the Eco Learning Program.
The first ‘eco ideas’ Factory in Latin America, where white goods are manufactured
Press release for a new refrigerator produced in the factory
In June 2012, the Rio+20 United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development was held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The conference was to follow up agreements made 20 years ago in the 1992 Earth Summit. Discussions were held among top-level governmental officials from different countries on greening the economy in the context of sustainable development and poverty eradication.
Timed to coincide with Rio+20, the Japanese government presented the Japan Pavilion exhibition, in which Panasonic hosted a booth. The booth exhibited our energy solutions to realize a comfortable and sustainable lifestyle and also showcased our environmental efforts in Brazil. The energy solution display covered a range of Panasonic technologies and products that deliver the creation, storage, conservation, and management of energy. These included HIT solar panels which boast the industry's highest energy conversion efficiency standards and high-capacity lithium batteries, along with various energy-efficient products such as refrigerators, air conditioners, and washing machines. The booth also introduced the Fujisawa Sustainable Smart Town project as one example of our solutions that improves energy usage across an entire town.
Through this exhibition we will make the best use of the network we have built up with governmental officials from around the world and key B2B persons, aiming to expand our energy solution business in Latin America.
View of the Panasonic booth
Display of energy creation and storage
Display of energy-efficient products
Since April 2012, PANABRAS has been undertaking a new branding campaign, known as "[re]think," to increase the awareness of the Panasonic brand among Brazilian customers. [re]think sends our customers the message of "stop and think" to realize the importance for each of us to think about the impact of our actions on the environment and society in various occasions in our daily lives. The message conveys our strong wish to work together with our users and spread products that not only bring convenience and comfort, but at the same time take account of the environment throughout people's day-to-day lives.
A concentrated advertising campaign was conducted through various media outlets, including TV, magazines, signs and billboards, and the Internet. Thanks to viewers' attention and positive responses, access to the PANABRAS website increased 1.5 times and access to Facebook increased 2.5 times compared with the previous year. Environmental awareness is high in Brazil, and branding communications with an environmental focus proved to be effective. We will continue this environmental communication with our customers through the [re]think campaign.
Website of the [re]think campaign
Every year we offer environmental education for the next generation to 40 thousand students in elementary schools and junior high schools in Latin America using our Eco Learning Program. Collaborating with the UNESCO World Heritage Centre, we have offered educational programs in Iguassu National Park, a world heritage site in Brazil in 2011, and in the Archaeological Monuments Zone of Xochicalco, another world heritage site in Mexico in November 2012. A total of approx. 600 students in elementary and junior high schools joined the program, which was designed for them to learn about importance of protecting world heritages and the global environment.
We plan to create a program more closely connected to the region, such as including a topic related to the Amazon. We are anticipating that around 45 thousand students will participate in environmental education in fiscal 2014.
Creating a hat with a decorative feather
Environmental education in Xochicalco, Mexico
Creating an eco picture diary