CSR(Corporate Social Responsibility):Continuous Development of Trust

Protection of the Global Environment

To hand down the beautiful earth to the future is a task shared by the international community and also a major challenge.
Tanaka Kikinzoku Group is pursuing every possibility to minimize the environmental impact of its business activities.

Environmental Management System

All of our production bases in Japan have obtained ISO 14001 certification on environmental management, and make continuous efforts to perform environmental conservation activities through the implementation of the PDCA cycle. In particular, we set targets for the Group as a whole to reduce CO? emissions (for prevention of global warming) and industrial waste emissions (for the establishment of a recycling-oriented society) and eradicate environmental incidents (for prevention of pollution), and aggressively strive to meet the targets.
To promote environmental conservation activities in a steady and smooth manner, we have set up a Group-wide structure with the Central Environmental Committee, which is composed of plant managers and facility managers, at the top. In addition, SHE* Promotion Office Manager Council, as well as the Environmental Managers Sub-committee composed of environmental managers, holds a meeting periodically to share information and exchange opinions actively.
*SHE: Safety, Health and the Environment

Environmental Incident Eradication Activities

To prevent air pollution, water pollution and soil pollution, we have set internal limits that are even stricter than the levels required by law. In particular, the internal limits for air and water pollutants are set to be 50% of the regulatory values in principle.
In case of any environmental incident, such as an excess over the internal limit, we respond promptly to it and strive to identify the cause and prevent its recurrence. We convey information internally through "flash reports on environmental incidents" and submit reports to relevant government bodies in accordance with the reporting and notification standards. While we had four environmental incidents in fiscal 2018, we took corrective measures immediately and have worked to prevent their recurrence.

Efforts to Reduce CO? Emissions

We strive for the reduction of CO? emissions from production activities to contribute to the prevention of global warming. As a result of a company-wide commitment to energy saving activities after the Great East Japan Earthquake in March 2011, we reduced CO? emissions by approximately 30% over the past 10 years.
However, CO? emissions in fiscal 2018 increased by 1.4% from the previous fiscal year to 38,000 tons. In recent years, our energy use has been increasing slightly due to our active business activities. We will continue to enhance energy saving activities such as the efficiency increase and operational improvement of various devices to further reduce CO? emissions.

Tomioka Plant received the Reviewer's Prize of the 2018 Grand Prize for Excellence in Energy Efficiency and Conservation

The plant received the prize in recognition of its efforts to reduce the power use of compressors, which represents a large percentage of power use in the plants, as well as its remarkable results.
Grand Prize for Excellence in Energy Efficiency and Conservation is a program to commend great cases of energy saving efforts, products with excellent energy saving performance, etc. in order to contribute to the establishment of energy saving society with higher awareness of energy saving across Japan, the widespread use of energy saving products and other initiatives.


Tomioka Plant uses the largest amount of energy in the whole company and has performed energy saving activities according to the Core Environmental Policy for many years. The Energy Saving Committee in the plant aims to ensure that the activities are maintained while trying to create an environment where staff can exchange opinions easily. In recognition of those energy saving activities with the involvement of all employees, we received the Reviewer's Prize in the 2018 Grand Prize for Excellence in Energy Efficiency and Conservation. The prize was a great encouragement for us and I would like to thank those who have given us instruction as a responsible person. We will continue to make steady efforts to save energy.

KIMURA, Shinichi Leader, Production Engineering Section, Tomioka Plant, Tanaka Kikinzoku Kogyo K.K.

KIMURA, Shinichi
Leader, Production Engineering Section,
Tomioka Plant, Tanaka Kikinzoku Kogyo K.K.

Efforts to Reduce Industrial Waste Emissions

We generate a large amount of acid and alkali waste liquid when precious metals are dissolved, refined or collected from waste precious metal solution. As a result of the thorough separation of waste to promote 3R (reduction, reuse and recycling), we reduced industrial waste emissions by approximately 70% over the past six years. On the other hand, the waste emissions in fiscal 2018 increased by 12% year-on-year due to the impact of our active business activities.
We will continuously promote measures to ensure that we can restrain the generation of waste even if our businesses are expanded.

Effective Use of Precious Metals

Actions of the Japanese Government for the Establishment of a Sound Material-Cycle Society

The Fundamental Plan for Establishing a Sound Material-Cycle Society, which was approved by the Cabinet in March 2003, set the diagram of material flow in Japan as a whole and three indicators, namely resource productivity, cyclical use rate and final disposal amount.
In the meantime, Environmental Reporting Guidelines 2018 was published in June 2018. In this revision, entities are required to not comprehensively report on the overall material flow but independently identify and disclose the material environmental impacts they must address.

Formulation of New Environmental Indicators

Accordingly, Tanaka Kikinzoku Group has formulated new environmental indicators. In response to the revision of the Environmental Reporting Guidelines, we defined the material environmental impacts for us as "the amount of precious metal bullion inputs and the recycled amount" and established the bullion flow diagram and two indicators in accordance with the material-cycle fundamental plan of the Japanese Government.

Resource productivity represents the profit per ton of externally procured bullion and can be regarded as the earning power from an environmental perspective. The figure reached a record high in fiscal 2017 and remained unchanged in fiscal 2018. Cyclical use rate indicates the ratio of the amount of bullion recycled internally to the total amount of bullion inputs and has been around 80%. Note that we have not established an indicator equivalent to the final disposal amount for the Japanese Government because we do not dispose of any precious metal.
In the future, we will improve those environmental indicators to contribute to the establishment of a sound material-cycle society and the realization of a circular economy (*).
(*) Concept to concurrently achieve a sound material-cycle society and economic activities. It is required to generate wealth from waste materials and from waste in business activities.

Initiatives to Conserve Biodiversity

Support of an NPO

As an initiative to conserve biodiversity, Tanaka Kikinzoku Group started to cooperate with Tsurumi River Basin Networking, which is an NPO in Yokohama, Kanagawa (represented by Dr. Yuji Kishi), in fiscal 2019. We support the Multi-nature River Development Blooming Tsurumi River Project, which was launched by the NPO in April 2019.

In this project, alternative and attractive indigenous plants that need only small maintenance work (e.g. cow parsnip, tawny daylily, orange daylily and coastal daylily) will be replanted in the places that are covered by exotic species causing hay fever, such as hybrid ryegrass, therefore have to be treated regularly with weeding, etc. The project aims to create safe and biologically diverse multi-nature biotopes.
Cow parsnips and the varieties of daylily bloom beautifully from July to September. Various species of swallowtail butterflies such as old world swallowtail and Chinese windmill are attracted to the flowers to suck nectar.
In the future, we will also consider a participatory program where employees cultivate orange daylilies in their houses for replanting.

Photo courtesy of Non-Profit Organization Tsurumi River Basin Networking

Raising Awareness among Employees and Their Families through Eco Tours

While giving economic support to an NPO specializing in the conservation of biodiversity, we now organize eco tours to raise awareness of the conservation of biodiversity among employees.
As the first tour, we organized a walk in Koajiro Forest in Miura, Kanagawa on Saturday, May 25, 2019.
A total of 25 employees and their family members joined the walk to stroll through the forest and around a tidal flat. They watched courtship dance of small ocypodoid crabs and observed fireflies.
We also worked to conserve coastal daylilies, which is endangered due to the damage of tidal waves and illegal digging.

  • Forest walk

  • Walk around a swamp

  • Walk around a tidal flat

  • Walk on the seashore

  • Dance of a small ocypodoid crab

  • Red-clawed crab brooch

We will continue to organize eco tours regularly to raise awareness of environmental issues among employees and their families.

Photo courtesy of Non-Profit Organization Koajiro Outdoor Activity Organizing Committee