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Environmental Report 2018

Reduction of Materials and Resource Usage

Reducing Usage of Materials

 We are working hard to reduce the amount of material that becomes waste after being introduced into the manufacturing phase. In addition to reducing and effectively utilizing natural resources, we also pursue the reduction of energy use, greenhouse gas emissions, and costs from material manufacturing to the processing of products.
 See below for information on our efforts for the effective use of key materials at each site.

●Efforts at JAE

To reduce the amount of material used in machining, JAE is working to purchase materials in ideal sizes. In order to reduce the volume of gold used in gold plating in production, JAE is making ongoing efforts to implement efficiency improvements such as the management of the proper metal plating area and speeding up the process. At the same time, it utilizes reusable parts of production equipment and pursues the effective use of resources and the reduction of material and capital investment costs.

●Efforts at HAE

HAE is focusing on reducing the amount of materials used by narrowing the metal materials used in presses and pin protection materials. Molding materials are being reduced by reducing unnecessary spoolers/runners (*use cursor to view definitions) that are discharged when extracting molded products; improving the number, mold shape, and positioning of gates (*use cursor to view definitions) when designing molds; and switching from cold runners to hot runners. This reduces the amount of molding material used, while using recycled materials promotes continuous reduction in the cost of newly purchased material inputs and helps to reduce waste material. To reduce the amount of gold used in gold plating, HAE is constantly making efficiency improvements such as in proper plating area management and speeding up the process.

●Efforts at YAE

Measures are underway for reducing the amount of materials used and waste generated by downsizing molds and revising the width of metal materials used in presses. In addition, increasing the rate of reuse of molding materials, reducing input materials by promoting closed-loop-recycling of product waste, and cutting down on the volume of materials used by making spoolers/runners more compact, result in significant CO2 reductions.

●Efforts at FAE

Efforts to improve the reuse rate for copper alloy electrode material used in the manufacturing process for metal parts (discharge machining) are contributing to a reduction in the quantity of material used and the metal waste generated.

●Efforts at SAE

The SAE site continues to focus on self-production of machined parts and reducing cutting processes. These efforts contribute to reduced metal waste, as well as lower CO2 emissions during material production.

Conservation of Water Resources

 Japan may appear to be a country with abundant water resources, but it is actually said to be the world’s largest importer of virtual water (*use the cursor to view definition). Around the world, we see explosive population growth as well as drought and other abnormal weather conditions that result in many people being unable to obtain one-tenth of the daily water that a person requires.

 In recent years, as with climate change, the public expects that the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and other issues raised by the United Nations in 2015, such as efforts for the sustainable use of water resources, be considered global issues. We have continued our water resource efforts and communicated them in our 2015 Environmental Report.
2015:     Water input volume in sales per unit based on water conservation
2016:     Water resource circulation balance was put into a visually readable format at JAE
2017:     Water Risk Assessment (using WRI Aqueduct) at JAE compared with CDP, and water resource management goals and PDCA cycle compared with SDGs

 Here are reported examples of reducing water usage and the status and challenges of new initiatives.

●Examples of reducing water usage

We will present some examples of activities conducted by the JAE Group in Japan and overseas to reduce water usage through the protection of forests to conserve water resources, and the cleaning of rivers and sea coasts.

    Water saving in production: recycling water in the connector product plating line, on/off controls for water usage on each cleaning line, and installing an evaporation prevention cover. Also limiting users in processes where large volumes of water are required for cleaning, and specialized faucets that are opened with keys.
    Water saving in lifestyle: adjusting water volume used in air conditioning cooling towers, recycling wastewater, using rainwater for toilets, using cooling tower drain water for toilets, changing from buried pipes that supply water for living to above-ground piping for the early detection of leaks and repair, and raising awareness of an important resource.

    In line with these activities, at the JAE Group in Japan and at production sites in overseas locations, every year the efficiency of water usage is being improved. (The graph displays water input volume in sales per unit.)

●Supply Chain Development
In 2017, we began to monitor water usage throughout the supply chain pertaining to the procurement of materials by the JAE Group, aiming to make more effective use of water resources across the life cycle.
 We reviewed the survey method and monitored the amount of water used, with the following two methods. It appears that the monitoring has contributed to raising awareness of water as a valuable resource, but large differences were found in the survey results depending on the survey method. In response, we plan to conduct ongoing surveys to improve monitoring accuracy.
Survey method and result summary
1.     As a part of the environmental quality checks we conduct as we pursue green procurement, water usage volume was included on the check sheet in the survey on actual water usage. The annual usage volume was 169,404 thousand m3.
2.     Based on estimates using the “Water Footprint” database released by Tokyo City University, annual water usage was 26,684 thousand m3.

●Water “Consumption” Survey

While considering policies to further reduce water usage at each site, we surveyed “consumption” in the water circulation cycle at work sites. After surveying the amount of evaporation from production and air conditioning equipment, the amount of food and drink consumed at the company’s welfare facilities, the amount of watering of areas of greenery, and the amount of evaporation from other facilities, we found that there was a two- to eight-time difference between the estimates and meter readings in evaporation from the cooling tower.
 Measures to reduce water usage had a major effect on air conditioning equipment, and we identified a need to improve the accuracy of evaporation volume measured in order to examine further measures. 

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