CSR Information

Efficient Use of Water Resources

Reduction of Water Consumption in Business Activities

Around the world, there is a growing sense of crisis over water shortages. It is expected that this problem will become more and more urgent as the demand for water rises with population increase and economic growth in developing countries.

In addition to manufacturing plants inside and outside Japan, since fiscal 2012, the Sumitomo Forestry Group began examining the consumption of water and the associated sources at bases where actual water usage is measurable, such as at buildings owned by the Sumitomo Forestry Group. Plants in Japan primarily manufacture processed wood products, such as interior materials for housing, and thus do not use large amounts of water. Nevertheless, in order to use water resources as effectively as possible, the Group employs water-saving initiatives at each plant. The Group will work to set reduction target values of water consumption every year at Sumitomo Forestry Crest Co., Ltd. (adhesive production), Kawanokita Development Co., Ltd. (operation of a golf course), and Sumirin Fill Care Co., Ltd. (operation of nursing care facilities) that use a relatively large amount of water.

The water consumption reduction target in fiscal 2017 is 1.19% for the entire Group in Japan, except our biomass power generation business that started operation in mid 2016.

In fiscal 2015, Sumitomo Forestry conducted sample survey of water used at new housing construction sites and found the volume of water used per 1m² of floor area is approximately 0.0887 m³.

Water Consumption trends of the Sumitomo Forestry Group Companies*1symbol for Independent assurance
  Office Departments in Japan, etc. (Unit: m³) Plants and Power Generation Business Departments in Japan (Unit: m³) Overseas Plants Total
FY 2014 FY 2015 FY 2016 FY 2014 FY 2015 FY 2016 FY 2016 FY 2016
Service water 64,064 170,117 80,052 22,492 17,612 114,028 581,263 775,343
Ground water 2,970 3,438 0*2 201 124 0*2 168,007 168,007
Industrial water 109,500 120,306 131,206 173,468 166,444 717,998 215,065 1,064,269
Total 176,534 293,861 211,258 196,161 184,180 832,026 964,335 2,007,619
  • *1 Covers sites where actual water usage is measurable, such as at buildings owned by the Sumitomo Forestry Group.
  • *2 Ground water up to fiscal 2015 includes water purchased from the water authorities as a ground water source. Since fiscal 2016, water purchased from the water authorities is all included as service water based on standard disclosure.

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Efforts at Sumitomo Forestry Crest

Sumitomo Forestry Crest’s Imari (former Kyushu No.2) Plant manufactures synthetic resin adhesives and other products. It primarily promotes three measures for reducing water usage. First, it uses industrial water to cool manufacturing equipment. Then, it reuses the water to dilute plant effluent.

Measuring the COD of effluent

Measuring the COD of effluent

Measures Used at the Sumitomo Forestry Crest’s Imari Plant for Saving Water
  1. 1. Collect some of the water used for washing equipment, and reuse it as a raw material.
  2. 2. Improve the proportion of rainwater used, such as by upgrading the pumps used for collecting rainwater.
  3. 3. Maintain water-quality control by measuring COD* and treat wastewater using only the minimum amount of water necessary.
  • * Chemical Oxygen Demand (COD): An indication of the amount of oxygen required to oxidize an organic compound in water; one of the most important indicators of water quality.

Participation in Relevant Incentives

The Sumitomo Forestry Group did not participate in incentives related to water, but the Group plans to first answer the questionnaire received for CDP Water sent for the first time to the Sumitomo Forestry Group in fiscal 2017 to disclose more detailed information about efforts on risks related to water.

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Toward the Future

The Sumitomo Forestry Group is operating its businesses in water-stressed areas and plans to consider reduction in water consumption in these areas. We also plan to look into aggregating the water consumption at overseas affiliated companies other than manufacturing facilities not currently included in the total.

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CSR Report2017