Preventing Contamination and Waste Reduction

Materiality
Related ESG: E SDGs6SDGs12SDGs14SDGs15SDGs6、SDGs12、SDGs14、SDGs15
Reducing environmental impact

Policy and Approach

In recent years, there have been growing expectations in society for the creation of a “circular economy”; an economic system that recycles and reuses previously discarded products as new resources.

The Toyobo Group has long taken a proactive approach to resource circulation, such as using recycled resin made from PET bottles as the raw material for chemical synthetic fiber and film products. We are currently working on the use of plant-derived raw materials, and the development of biodegradable products. We will continue to promote initiatives that help achieve resource circulation throughout the product life cycle, from design, material procurement and production to post-usage, thereby contributing to the realization of a circular economy.

Participation in Various Initiatives

In August 2019, the Toyobo Group joined the European consortium CEFLEX. Established in 2017, CEFLEX comprises more than 130 companies and organizations involved in the flexible packaging value chain, including leading raw materials manufacturers, converters, printing companies, consumer goods manufacturers, retailers, and recycling companies. CEFLEX’s goals include establishing a collection, sorting, and reprocessing infrastructure for used flexible packaging by 2025 in order to promote the realization of a circular economy in the European flexible packaging sector. Joining CEFLEX will allow the Toyobo Group to quickly acquire the latest information on recovery systems and regulations, and moreover, we will use this in developing and supplying eco-friendly technologies and products.

We have also joined the Japan Clean Ocean Material Alliance (CLOMA), an organization established in Japan to reduce marine plastic waste. Through collaboration with other CLOMA members, which includes manufacturers, processors and users of packaging and other materials, we will work to develop and promote the use of alternative materials.

Contributing to Resource Circulation through All Business Processes

Contributing to Resource Circulation through All Business Processes

Reduction in Industrial Waste

The Toyobo Group is working to reduce, re-use, and recycle waste, aiming for an annual final disposal rate (landfill rate)* of under 1%. We again achieved this target in fiscal 2020, with a final disposal rate of 0.57%. We will continue making efforts to further reduce the final disposal rate and waste quantities through reviews of our sorting and disposal methods. We will also set new recycling rate targets to promote resource circulation.

Toyobo takes a systematic approach to appropriate disposal of polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) waste. The disposal rate up to fiscal 2020 was 77% (unit volume basis). With regard to electric facilities containing low-concentration PCBs, which we currently use, we are implementing updated plans so as to meet the statutory disposal deadlines.

  • * The volume of landfill waste within total waste

Management of Chemical Substances

The Toyobo Group endeavors to manage chemical substances appropriately throughout the product lifecycle (research, development, design, manufacturing, sales, use, and disposal), in order to help conserve the global environment, prevent accidents, ensure workers’ health and safety, and ensure product safety.

Chemical substance management structure

For appropriate management of chemical substances, the Toyobo Group has established a management system at each office. Each solutions division supervises the activities of the offices and group companies under their jurisdiction.

In addition, we have created a “TOYOBO Chemical Substance Management Classification” in compliance with laws and regulations—both international and domestic—as well as client requests. This classifies the chemical substances we handle into five levels, and the management procedures are specified for each level or “rank”. Use of substances in rank A and B is permitted only when the risks are thoroughly assessed, mitigation measures are taken, and the risk is deemed tolerable. We are continuously making efforts to reduce the overall usage volume of rank A and B substances by optimizing and replacing these substances.

Chemical substance management structure

Chemical substance management structure

Chemical substance management activities

Supply chain management, which started with the European Union’s legislation on chemical substances, has also come to be required in Japan following the "Act on the Evaluation of Chemical Substances and Regulation of Their Manufacture, etc. (Chemical Substances Control Act)," as well as other regulations relating to the management of chemical substances. Additionally, the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals (GHS) has been adopted by the United Nations.

In view of this situation, Toyobo has introduced a chemical substance management system covering procurement to manufacturing and sales. This is to realize green procurement while providing accurate and prompt support to our customers. We employ this system to investigate the use of regulated substances and carry out surveys regarding content in products. The system also supports suppliers in creating safety data sheets (SDS) for chemical substances.

Given the global expansion of the Toyobo Group’s operations, we are creating a database of chemical substance-related laws and regulations in Asia, Europe, North and South America. Furthermore, in order to identify and mitigate chemical substance handling risk, we have established rules concerning matters including the replacement/reduction of hazardous chemical substances, proper maintenance of the workplace and environments, and the management of chemical substances in products. In this way, we are striving to ensure proper management.

Reduction of hazardous substance emissions

In order to reduce the amount of hazardous chemical substances emitted, the Toyobo Group assesses and reports the release and transfer volumes of chemical substances subject to the Pollutant Release and Transfer Register Act (PRTR Act) for each office, and then analyzes the overall results which are published every year in an effort to reduce our own emissions and quantities transferred.

We are working to reduce emissions by improving and updating manufacturing facilities and equipment, improving operating conditions, installing equipment to remove the substances in question, and substituting raw and auxiliary materials, and hope to meet our fiscal 2031 target by setting reduction targets of 60% for emissions to air and 80% for emissions to water compared to fiscal 2015.

Release and Transfer Volumes of PRTR Substances

(tonnes)

FY Transfer volume Emissions to air Emissions to public sewage system Emissions to soil Landfill volume
2018 1,174 154 20 0 0
2019 1,085 103 12 0 0
2020 1,169 95 19 0 0

Coverage: TOYOBO CO., LTD. and affiliated companies in Japan

Atmospheric

NOx and SOx emissions

(tonnes)

FY NOx SOx
2018 969 988
2019 883 1,018
2020 922 959

Coverage: TOYOBO CO., LTD. and affiliated companies in Japan

CFC emissions

(t-CO2)

FY CFC emissions
2018 239
2019 460
2020 733

Coverage: TOYOBO CO., LTD.