AGC Group's CSR
For the Earth

2. Resource Utilization and Management / Preventing Pollution

The AGC Group's Approach

Establishing a Chemical Substance Management System

The AGC Group has been working to improve the management of chemical substances at all worksites that use them.

Accordingly, when conducting risk assessments of chemical substances, the Group uses its own globally applicable standardized assessment method, which is based on the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labeling of Chemicals.

Furthermore, it provides regular training to relevant managers, and implements measures for improving the capabilities of management across the entire Group, starting with each production plant.

Chemical Substance Risk Assessment training
Chemical Substance Risk Assessment training

The AGC Group's Approach

Promoting the Reuse of Calcium Fluoride

The Chemicals Company has been actively engaged to collect and reuse of calcium fluoride (fluorite), which is a key raw material for fluorinated products. Since it is one of the natural resources distributed unevenly in the world, Japan depends greatly on imports from China. For that reason, the Chemicals Company has been recovering and reusing the calcium fluoride, which is contained in waste water and gases generated at its own manufacturing processes, and which is recovered from its customers’ wastewater treatment processes for hydrofluoric acid.1

Furthermore, the AGC Chiba Plant acquires fluorocarbon products from customers via fluorocarbon collection services, extracts the calcium fluoride by destructing the products and reuses it as a raw material.

In 2018, the plant collected and destroyed fluorocarbon products equivalent to approximately 1.40 million t-CO2 (approximately 1.61 million t-CO2 in 2017).

Recovery and Recycling of Fluorocarbons

Recovery and Recycling of Fluorocarbons
  • 1 The Chemicals Company was awarded the 2014 METI Minister Award, the highest prize in the Resource Recycling Technology and System Awards. The awards were created by the Japan Environmental Management Association for Industry, and are given annually to recognize projects and initiatives that apply advanced technologies and systems for controlling waste generation (reduce), reusing discarded materials (reuse) and effectively using reclaimed resources (recycle).

The AGC Group's Approach

Promoting Initiatives to Reduce Water Usage and Prevent Water Pollution

AGC Glass Europe (AGEU) has been working to reduce total water consumption at its facilities and has implemented specific actions to this end, including reusing and recycling water and efforts to combat leakages. From 1998 to 2018, water consumption was reduced by 74%, and the Group’s total water consumption was about 5.2 million m3 in 2018.

Water used for industrial purposes at AGEU is drawn largely from surface water, as opposed to drinking water. Over 90% of that water is used in cooling systems operating in a closed loop, drastically minimizing water use.

AGEU also strives to reduce industrial wastewater pollution in production by curbing its emissions of metals. The plants at AGEU are equipped with wastewater treatment equipment, and also limit and replace the toxic substances used in Mirox New Generation Ecological mirror production. This has resulted in a 95% reduction in water pollution.

Storm water recovery system in Seingbouse, France
Storm water recovery system in Seingbouse, France

The AGC Group's Approach

Helping Reduce Air Pollution in China by Providing Denitrification Technology to Local Glass Manufacturers

In an effort to reduce air pollution, China’s Ministry of Environmental Protection made it mandatory for glass manufacturing plants in Hebei Province and the cities of Beijing and Tianjin to install desulfurization, denitrification and dust filtration equipment, as well as online monitoring systems for those facilities, effective from April 2014.

Against that backdrop, the AGC Group cooperated with local engineering companies to provide local glass manufacturers with denitrification technology it had developed for processing glass melting furnace exhaust gas. By assisting the other companies, the Group has been helping to address China’s air pollution problem.

The AGC Group’s flue gas denitrification equipment has been used over many years at its manufacturing plants and is compatible with melting furnaces that use lowquality heavy oil, which contains many impurities. Due to remote data monitoring and after-sales service systems, the equipment has been evaluated highly, leading to increased installations.

Equipment fitted with catalytic ceramic filters

Equipment fitted with catalytic ceramic filters

The AGC Group's Approach

New Production Plant in Brazil Equipped with Advanced Technologies for Minimizing Environmental Load

In 2013, the AGC Group completed a new plant in Guarantinguetá, in the Brazilian state of São Paulo, to produce architectural glass and automotive glass. Equipped with advanced technologies for treating exhaust gases, saving energy and conserving water, the plant is currently recognized as having the lowest environmental impact among glass production factories in South America.

After a huge new investment, in 2019 AGC Vidros do Brasil opened, including a second architectural glass production line using the same advanced technologies that minimize environmental impact. From the time construction commenced in 2011, the Group joined the local government in environmental activities to restore vegetation and protect local wildlife in the vicinity. Since that year, 19,500 trees of a total of 33,000 scheduled for replanting have been planted around the new facility.

AGC Vidros do Brasil production plant—a huge new investment
AGC Vidros do Brasil production plant—a huge new investment