Reduce / Reuse / Recycle

March 22, 2007


2006 Award Winners for Innovations that Combat Global Warming

Keywords: Climate Change Government Manufacturing industry Reduce / Reuse / Recycle Renewable Energy 

The Japanese Ministry of the Environment announced 34 winners of the 2006 environment minister's award for global warming prevention activities on November 20, 2006. The prize was first offered in 1998 to honor outstanding achievements by groups and individuals in efforts to combat global warming in five categories: technological development and commercialization, introduction and spread of technology, practical activities, environmental education and awareness-raising, and international contributions.

ITO EN, Ltd., a major manufacturing company of green tea and tea beverages, won the award in the category of technological development and commercialization. The company was chosen for its tea leaf recycling system. Due to increasing demand for tea beverages, the amount of used tea leaves from the production process has been increasing. Used tea leaves were usually dried before being recycled, which lead to higher oil consumption. ITO EN succeeded in recycling used tea leaves without drying them, and created various products that use features of tea, such as its antibacterial effects. The products include plasterboard and resin containing tea, as well as plastic benches coated by resins containing tea compounds.

The Urban Planning and Development Systems Group of Hitachi, Ltd., won the award in the category of introduction and spread of technology for its energy service company (ESCO) business. The group was awarded for its contribution to energy saving and reduction of greenhouse gases in a wide range of facilities, such as factories, hospitals and research institutes. ESCO businesses ensure that clients can cover the costs of installing energy-saving facilities through the reduction in energy costs. Thus, ESCO clients do not have to pay additional costs to contribute to reduction in energy consumption and greenhouse gasses. Hitachi helped to reduce 120,000 tons of CO2 per year from 2000 through 2005 through its ESCO business.

Posted: 2007/03/22 02:39:35 PM
Japanese version