3.Reducing Environmental Impact throughout the Entire Product Lifecycle
Basic Approach and Policies
The Canon Group Environmental Charter exhorts us to maximize resource efficiency, which means gaining greater value from fewer resources. Based on this concept, Canon's “Action for Green” environmental vision aims to deliver highly functional products while at the same time minimizing environmental impact in order to propel environmentally conscious management. We know that to achieve this goal requires reducing environmental impact at every stage of the product lifecycle, from materials procurement, production and distribution through use and the product recycling leading to re-use. We have therefore established action plans covering every stage of the product lifecycle for detailed control of the progress of our efforts.
Balancing High Functionality with Reduced Environmental Impact
—Developing environmentally conscious products and making environmental impact "visible"
Developing and Expanding Our Environmental Frontrunner Product Lineup to Minimize Environmental Impact
Canon has long undertaken product development with due consideration of the environment in the three key areas of energy conservation, resource conservation and elimination of hazardous substances.
In 2008 we established an environmental vision to further advance those goals, and each of Canon's products operations, Group companies and partner companies joined in promoting the Environmental Frontrunner Project for the development of environmentally conscious products. The project focused on product development that takes the environment into full consideration at every stage of the product lifecycle, from materials procurement through manufacturing, sales and logistics, use and disposal/recycling.
Representative of the resulting line of Environmental Frontrunner Products is the imageRUNNER ADVANCE series of office network multifunction devices (MFDs) launched in 2009. Following this, we continued to expand the series lineup, and also increased the number of Environmental Frontrunner Products by extending the fundamental environmentally conscious technologies employed in the imageRUNNER ADVANCE series to the Satera series of laser printers (Japan only) and our imagePRESS series of digital production printing systems.
Evolution of Canon's Environmental Action
Development of the Ecology Information Plug-In Making Environmental Impact During Product Use "Visible"
Reducing environmental impact throughout the entire product lifecycle requires impact reduction during product use as well as during manufacturing. There has been rising demand in Japan for power conservation since the Great East Japan Earthquake, and the challenge of achieving maximum product energy efficiency is now faced by society as a whole.
Customer awareness and behavior when using products are vital to reducing environmental impact during product use. Customers must be able to confirm for themselves the environmental impact that occurs during product use and the benefits of reducing that impact. Canon has therefore established the GREEN NAVI Website, which makes it possible to confirm the CO2 emissions of Canon products as well as the benefit, in terms of CO2 emissions reduction, of switching to new products with high energy-conservation performance.
In addition, in 2011 we began offering the Ecology Information Plug-in, which makes environmental impact during product use “visible.” Developed as a new function of our imageWARE Enterprise Management Console management utility software for office-use MFDs and laser printers, it calculates power consumption and CO2 emissions during use, making these “visible” in graph or table form. Device-map view, target-setting view, and view set by user are also possible. These functions make it possible to see when power is being wasted during use, so customers can contribute to reducing environmental impact in the workplace.
Enabling Optimized Use of Inkjet MFPs with ECO Settings
PIXMA series inkjet printers are equipped with a new “ECO settings” function, which allows users to select the optimal use setting for reducing environmental impact. This new function enables environmentally conscious use through such features as automatic two-sided printing and auto-power off, which can easily be set by selecting the icons on the LCD display of the PIXMA printer. These settings save paper and limit power use during sleep mode, thereby contributing to resource and energy conservation.
To provide this function to even more customers, four models released in 2011 were equipped with the ECO settings.
PIXMA MG6200 series inkjet printer
Working with Customers to Reduce Environmental Impact throughout Society
Canon believes that offering the Ecology Information Plug-in and ECO settings will contribute to reduced environmental impact during the use of Canon MFDs and inkjet printers and lead to greater environmental awareness on the part of each one of our customers.
Canon actively seeks to offer new products and use suggestions that will lead to environmental impact reduction. It is our hope that by working with our customers we can together reduce power consumption and CO2 emissions throughout society.
Reducing CO2 Emissions from Operations
—Promoting energy conservation, including electric power-saving measures, at all operational sites
Canon recognized the seriousness of the global warming problem early on, and has promoted the development of technologies to prevent global warming as well as energy-conservation activity in our operations across the Group.
Of particular note in 2011 were the countermeasures we took concerning the electric power supply issues caused by the Great East Japan Earthquake. One such measure was our prompt establishment of a electric power monitoring system, which allowed us to visualize real-time electric power use volume and the status of electricity-saving measures at each operational site. We also launched the Canon Group Energy Management Committee with the goal of optimizing our overall energy-conservation activity by sharing information and promoting awareness, as well as fostering a unified approach shared by all Group companies in Japan in developing our organizational activity. We will continue employing this approach effectively to continuously reduce the amount of energy we use.
Other measures to promote energy conservation involved promoting efficiency in operating manufacturing facilities. We sought to reduce CO2 emissions at manufacturing sites through such measures as adjusting production line air conditioning, optimizing clean room air conditioning control programming and improving compressor operation efficiency.