Initiatives for the Environment
The Hokuriku region where Sodick has a production base is a place where
traditional culture lives in symbiosis with beautiful natural surroundings.
In our work of developing and manufacturing so many products in this well-favored region, we have come to see that the very fact that the natural environment is treated with such care is connected to people having richness in their lives.
Sodick’s Policy and Structures
Sodick today has an Environmental Policy in place, and has acquired the ISO14001 certification for its Kaga and Fukui plants as well as for all of its sales offices throughout Japan. To continue to make improvements in terms of its environmental impact, every year the Company reassesses its Environmental Policy and settles on particular topical issues and objectives for it. At the QVP+ Global Presentation Event* held annually by the Quality Assurance Department, representatives of each department and Group company detail the successes and item meriting reassessment from the previous fiscal year in regard to the environment, and of course quality and safety as well. They also declare their respective unit’s targets for the new fiscal year and hammer out their shared courses of action. This is connected to continuous improvements that also take medium- and long-term targets into account.
- * QVP+ Global Presentation Event: “QVP” stands for “Quality Victory Plan.” This annual event is for the various departments to look for ways to make improvements in the areas of quality, environmental concerns, and safety in keeping with the policies and targets set down by the president.
Structure for Promoting Environmental Concerns
Sodick has created a structure for promoting environmental concerns around the three core factors of “quality,” “environment,” and “safety.”
Initiatives Related to CO2 Reduction
Sodick's head office and plants have all adopted LED lighting produced by Sodick LED Co., Ltd.
The “Kirameki” SL-series LED light consumes half the power of a normal fluorescent light, resulting in an approximately 210 kg reduction in CO2 emissions annually based on continuous 24-hour-per-day use. That is equivalent to the amount of CO2 that 19 beech trees absorb.
The Company is also setting its focus on using natural energy. Solar power systems have been installed on rooftops at its head office and at the Miyazaki plant of Group company Sodick F.T. The solar cells at the head office have a capacity of 49.88 kW, while those at the Miyazaki facility operate at 800 kW.
The Company is also making an effort to sell that electricity generated through solar power at the head office back to the power companies, illustrating the multifaceted approach to environmental conservation that it is pursuing.
Promoting Eco-Friendly Procurements
The Japanese government in May 2000 enacted the Act on Promoting Green Purchasing.
This Act was established to actively promote eco-friendly procurements based on the perspective that demand-side initiatives were of equal importance to supply-side initiatives when it comes to forming a recycling-oriented society. The Act encourages procurements that put priority on goods with a small environmental impact while still bearing in mind the unique features of a given business, the strength and durability required, the preservation of functionality, and cost considerations.
In conjunction with this, Sodick has been creating its own SAP-linked harmful chemical substances control system (SHCSCS). This enables the Company to control in a systemic way for whether or not its products contain harmful chemical substances.
Currently, it is controlling and managing for as many as 500 types of chemical substances. The Procurement Division, General Affairs Department, and Quality Assurance Department will be working hand-in-hand to thoroughly investigate for the presence of harmful substances in any materials that will be newly purchased in the future.
Promoting Environmentally Friendly Products
Sodick is actively working to come up with products that are environmentally friendly. It has been making every effort to reduce waste by offering such ecofriendly or recyclable products as the “Tsubame Wire Plus,” the world’s first product adapted to used-wire recovery systems; the “Eco-Ion R,” whose construction permits the main component to be washed, its functions restored, and the unit to be reused; and the recyclable filter “EcoFilter SHF-25R.”
The world’s first product in this area adapted to used-wire recycling systems.
Built using high-quality and high-precision production process to offer superior straightness and an extremely smooth surface quality. The machining performance it draws out is highly reliable.
Carries on the performance of the enhanced life-type model SHF-25E. Life is approximately twice that of conventional
products (Sodick’s HF-25A used for comparison).
Decomposition structure type of filter (filter paper and outer frame). Depending on the rental contract, the product can be put into the distribution cycle and collected.
Suited for long processing times with its longer operating life. 18-L capacity is twice that of conventional types.
The “bottle” itself is exchangeable, so no need to do the work of refilling resin. The product is environmentally friendly.
CIP Fully Automated Noodle Boiling Machine
We developed the CIP fully automated noodle boiling machine as a new eco-friendly product for Food Processing Machinery Operations.
Cleaning performance has been improved over that offered by conventional machines, which rely on boiling water using indirect piping, because in this device steam is pumped directly across the bottom of the tub used for boiling to heat the water and bring it to a boil.
Furthermore, the device can reduces the amount of water supplied and flushed by reusing the water flushed from the tub to resupply it. In addition, by employing an exhaust recovery system that reuses any boiling water—which is brought to a boil in the pot from running the water supply through a heat exchanger—that overflows from it, the time needed for raising the temperature is shortened and the amount of steam used for simmering in the pot is greatly reduced.
Reducing the amount of steam contributes both to energy conservation and reducing CO2 emissions. Furthermore, the development of the CIP mixer (a machine with automated cleaning) has served to bring uniformity to cleaning levels, prevents contamination by foreign substances, and shortens cleaning times. It permits significant reductions in staffing requirements and energy consumption.
|Heat required prior to recovery A||1,500 x (99−16) = 124,500 kcal/h|
|Heat required after recovery B||1,500 x (99−65) = 51,000 kcal/h|
|Recovered heat A - B||124,500 − 51,000 = 73,500 kcal/h|
|Fuel oil conversions||73,500/8,500 (calorific value of heat quantity) = 8.65 L/h|
|Reduction in heat quantity||Assuming operates 12 hrs./day x 365 days/yr., fuel oil unit cost of ¥80|
|8.65 x 12 x 365 x 80 =
reduction of ¥3,030,960/year
|¥1,510,000/year if heat exchanger operation time is halved|