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Water Consumption Reduction

Water Consumption Reduction Initiatives

In the Global Risks Report published by the World Economic Forum annually, water crises have always ranked high in the risk landscape. Sumitomo Riko used AQUEDUCT, an international water risk assessment tool, to assess water risk in the regions of Japan and overseas where the Group’s production sites are located. Based on this, in fiscal 2018, it conducted a water risk survey, including conducting interviews with all of production plants in Japan and overseas. Based on the survey findings, since fiscal 2019, we have been reinforcing our initiatives for water risks from physical (water shortage), regulation, and reputation perspectives.
In order to reduce water consumption, the Sumitomo Riko Group has introduced technology for the cost-effective recycling of wastewater discharged by production processes and will promote reduction of water consumption through water-saving efforts and efficient use.

Water consumption (Sumitomo Riko Group)
Graph: Water consumption (Sumitomo Riko Group)
  • *1 Data boundary in fiscal 2015: Sumitomo Riko, five Sumitomo Riko Group companies in Japan, and 11 Sumitomo Riko Group companies overseas.
  • *2 The two European companies acquired in 2013 and their subsidiaries were added to the boundary of data aggregation from fiscal 2016, and four Sumitomo Riko Group companies and 16 companies overseas were added to the boundary of data aggregation from fiscal 2017.

Examples of reduction of water consumption

Reuse of process wastewater

SumiRiko Ohio, Inc. (U.S.) previously released water treated after wet blast process to a municipal effluent treatment company for treatment. It has since made improvements to enable that wastewater to be reused to replenish cooling water used in the production process. Specifically, an automatically controlled three-way valve installed at the discharge unit was designed such that wastewater is send to the effluent treatment company only when the process cooling water tank is full. This has resulted in major benefits in terms of reducing the volume of mains water used to replenish the water for the cooling water system.

Figure: Reuse of process wastewater

Reuse of non-industrial wastewater


Reuse of wastewater treated by a reverse osmosis membrane system, TRJ (China)

Tokai Rubber (Jiaxing) Co., Ltd. (TRJ) in China has been using recycled water in the production process since January 2018, prompted by the ban on direct discharge of non-industrial wastewater in accordance with new regulations. TRJ’s non-industrial wastewater is treated with water treatment equipment that employs a reverse osmosis membrane system, after which it is used in the production process. As a result, TRJ achieved a 20% reduction in the volume of water purchased.