Currently, more than 95% of the material used in our products is recyclable and/or recoverable. Here is how we do it:
Reduce - Reuse - Recycle
These are the principles based on which Toshiba develops its products. The “3R-Initative” is aimed at reducing waste, increasing incoming recycling and improving outgoing recycling.
We achieve waste reduction through various means, including reducing the amount of resources used to manufacture products (reducing weight and size) and extending product lives (including upgrades and maintenance).
Incoming recycling refers to the application of recycled materials in products. We work to improve our incoming recycling rate by increasing our use of recycled materials, plant-derived materials and reusable parts.
Outgoing recycling refers to the collection and recycling of end-of-life products. By promoting designs for reusing and recycling materials, we improve outgoing recycling while simultaneously improving the system design for recycling end-of-life products further.
To produce products with smallest impact to the environment caused by substances used in the production and for the products itself, the Toshiba Group is working in close cooperation with all supply chain partners. Especially, the proper control of contained chemical substance information is required.
In the European Union, the two most important regulations are the so-called REACH-Regulation (EU-Regulation regarding registration, evaluation, authorisation and restriction of chemicals) and the RoHS-Directive (EU directive on the restriction of the use of certain hazardous substances in electrical and electronic equipment). Actually hundreds of substances are covered by these two laws and have to be controlled and monitored through the entire supply-chain. On top of these legal requirements, the Toshiba Group has developed its own standard: the “Green Procurement Guidelines”. The guidelines are applied worldwide to all products so that customers can use these with a sense of security. The main aim is to pro-actively eliminate the use of specified chemicals, reduce the amount of chemicals contained in products and use substitute materials. As an example, the Toshiba Group is working on the phase-out and substitution of PVC (polyvinyl chloride) and BFR (brominated flame retardants) in several product categories.
To ensure the Green Procurement Guidelines are observed, Toshiba has implemented a monitoring and documentation system, which includes declarations from supplier, lab tests and regular auditing.
Efficient energy use, sometimes simply called energy efficiency, is the goal to reduce the amount of energy required to provide products and services. Improvements in energy efficiency are generally achieved by adopting a more efficient technology or production processes or by application of commonly accepted methods to reduce energy losses. There are many motivations to improve energy efficiency. Reducing energy use reduces energy costs and may result in cost saving for consumers if the energy savings offset any additional costs of implementing an energy efficient technology. Reducing energy use is also seen as a solution to the problem of reducing carbon dioxide emissions. According to the International Energy Agency, improved energy efficiency in buildings, industrial processes and transportation could reduce the world's energy needs in 2050 by one third, and help control global emissions of greenhouse gases.
Toshiba is implementing the Greening of Products initiative, which aims to achieve the highest level of environmental performance for all products that we develop and to minimise the environmental impact of products throughout their entire life cycles. In the past few years, we have made substantial improvements and have been able to considerably reduce the energy consumption of our products.