Updated on August 23, 2017
Under the Green Management 2020 mid-term environmental targets, Sony is working to achieve an absolute reduction in greenhouse gas emissions of 5% from the fiscal 2015 level by fiscal 2020. Main efforts toward this end included striving to reduce greenhouse gases such as CO2 related to energy consumption and cutting emissions of perfluorocarbons (PFCs) and other gases. In fiscal 2016, Sony's emissions of greenhouse gases (calculated in terms of CO2) totaled approximately 1.38 million tons. This represents an approximately 14% reduction from the fiscal 2015 level. Greenhouse gas emissions per unit of consolidated net sales, or emissions intensity, were 0.15 tons of CO2/million yen in Japan and 0.04 tons of CO2/million yen outside Japan.
In fiscal 2016, emissions of CO2 from energy use at Sony sites* accounted for approximately 1.25 million out of the approximately 1.38 million tons of total emissions at Sony, down by about 222,000 tons from fiscal 2015. CO2 emissions resulting from the use of energy at sites in Japan amounted to approximately 980,000 tons, a decrease of approximately 77,000 tons from fiscal 2015. CO2 emissions resulting from energy use at Sony sites include emissions from fuel used by Sony-owned business vehicles. In fiscal 2016, CO2 emissions resulting from fuel used in vehicles amounted to approximately 22,000 tons.
Going forward, Sony will take efforts to restrict greenhouse gas emissions through infrastructure-related measures, including the installation of high-efficiency equipment and the promotion of energy recycling, and to enhance nonstructural measures, notably the introduction of training programs designed to foster energy-saving leaders.
PFCs and other greenhouse gases with high global warming potential are used in cleaning and etching processes in the manufacture of semiconductors. Emissions of PFCs and other greenhouse gases in fiscal 2016 (calculated in terms of CO2) totaled approximately 130,000 tons, up about 3,000 tons from fiscal 2015. The main increase was attributable to an increase in device production volumes. Sony is taking further steps to reduce emissions, including installing gas abatement equipment.
To achieve its fiscal 2020 reduction targets, Sony is working on various energy conservation activities at its sites around the world. A sample of these initiatives follows.
Sony Semiconductor Manufacturing Corporation's Nagasaki Technology Center is working to improve air conditioning systems with the goal of conserving energy in cleanroom facilities used to manufacture semiconductors. Previous systems consumed a great deal of energy blowing clean air into cleanrooms and cooling down waste heat generated by the rooms' production equipment. Focusing on waste heat generated by this equipment, the center installed waste heat recovery equipment and a two-fluid humidification system to effectively use waste heat to power air conditioning equipment. By releasing mist to humidify and cool the room and facilitate transpiration that traps heat from the surrounding environment, two-fluid humidification establishes a system that is remarkably easy to control to ensure a stable air condition. Cleanroom facilities where semiconductors are manufactured must meet rigorous criteria, including precise humidity levels and temperatures. Utilizing two fluids, this humidification system not only meets these conditions, but also saves energy. The Nagasaki Technology Center capitalizes on the synergistic effect between the two-fluid humidification system and the use of recovered waste heat, which had previously been lost as surplus energy, to significantly reduce energy consumption in its cleanroom facilities. This initiative has become the new model for maintaining cleanroom humidity/temperature in the manufacture of semiconductors by Sony.
Sony Semiconductor Manufacturing Corporation's Kumamoto Technology Center is working to save energy by effectively using the waste heat generated in its production processes. The center uses heated pure water in the semiconductor cleaning process, it had been burning municipal gas and fuel in a boiler to generate steam for heating the water. To save energy, the center switched to a hot water heating method by efficiently recovering the waste heat from manufacturing machinery and using it as the heat source. This resulted in a considerable reduction in energy consumption compared to before installation, equivalent to a decrease of about 1,043 tons of CO2.
Sony promotes a broad range of energy-saving efforts at its sites around the world. In addition to increasing the energy efficiency of buildings and equipment, in recent years Sony has actively implemented activities for reducing energy consumption suggested by manufacturing site employees. These activities focus on the formulation and implementation of energy-saving solutions for manufacturing sites, which consume more electricity than any other part of Sony's manufacturing operations. Employees set ambitious project targets and take steps to shed light on energy consumed in different manufacturing processes. This enables employees to identify unnecessary uses of energy in such processes, as well as to develop and test solutions and, having confirmed the effectiveness thereof, to effect ongoing improvements. Particularly outstanding solutions are subsequently expanded to other sites. These activities were prompted by the effectiveness of the Eco Challenge Project implemented in 2009 at Sony Corporation's Sendai Technology Center and Sony Storage Media Manufacturing Corporation's Tagajo site. Similar energy conservation activities are now being implemented at Sony manufacturing sites around the world.