Environmental Approach

Against the backdrop of economic globalization and the rapid economic development of emerging nations, the depletion of various resources and environmental pollution are becoming cause for concern. With a goal of achieving Zero Emissions, Tsubaki strictly controls the chemical substances it uses based on laws and regulations in addition to hastening efforts to reduce waste and recycle.

Waste reduction and recycling

The Tsubaki Group takes a proactive approach to reducing and recycling waste. In the fiscal year ended March 31, 2018, the combined total amount of industrial and non-industrial waste emissions was 6,932 tons, representing a increase of 4.8% year-on-year. The recycling rate remained high at an annual average of 98.7%.

Waste Emission & Recycling Rate (Fiscal year average)
Waste Emission & Recycling Rate (Yearly Average)

Elimination of waste

Reduction in the volume of sludge waste by upgrading our industrial wastewater treatment facility (filtration equipment)

Automatic press-type filter dewatering equipment Automatic press-type filter dewatering equipment

Sludge is the predominant type of waste produced by the Kyotanabe Plant. The diatomaceous earth used to filter the wastewater and abrasives generated by the heat treatment barrel polishing process was also discharged as sludge.
Because diatomaceous earth accounted for nearly half of the sludge, we stopped using the outdated automatic drum-type diatomaceous earth precoat dewatering equipment in FYE 2017 and upgraded it to automatic press-type filter dewatering equipment that does not use diatomaceous earth. As a result, we were able to reduce industrial waste discharge (including a reduction in the water content of the sludge) by about 66 tons and disposal costs by about 2 million yen in FYE 2018.

Initiatives to reduce the use of hazardous chemical substance

Based on domestic and international legislation concerning hazardous chemical substances, The Tsubaki Group investigates substances contained in raw materials, parts, and other materials. In addition to gaining an understanding of the actual details regarding the usage of hazardous chemical substances and establishing permissible levels together with our customers, we continually strive to reduce the use of such substances.

Laws and Regulations Compliant Products
RoHS directive*1 General-purpose drive chains, Power-Lock (locking devices), couplings (shaft couplings), and reducers, other items
ELV directive*2 All components for automotive engine timing drive systems
Reach regulations*3 None
*1 An EU directive restricting the use of lead, mercury, cadmium, hexavalent chromium, polybrominated biphenyls, and polybrominated diphenyl ether as a general rule in electrical and electronic equipment.
*2 An EU directive restricting the use of lead, mercury, cadmium, and hexavalent chromium as a general rule to reduce waste from end-of-life vehicles (ELVs) and encourage appropriate disposal.
*3 Comprehensive EU regulations for the registration, evaluation, authorization, and restriction of chemical substances.

Promoting the reduction of the use of chemical substances subject to the PRTR Law

The Tsubaki Group surveys emissions of chemical substances specified by the Act on Confirmation, etc. of Release Amounts of Specific Chemical Substances in the Environment and Promotion of Improvements to the Management Thereof (known as the "PRTR Law") and works to reduce the use of such substances. In the fiscal year ended March 31, 2018, the group's annual PRTR report covered eight substances from five companies and eight plants.
At our relevant work sites, we are taking steps to reduce the use and emissions of these substances.

FYE 2018 data on chemical substances subject to the PRTR Law
Unit: kg/year
Location Substance No. Substance Name Amount Released Amount Transferred
Atmosphere Public water supply Soil On-site landfill Sewer Transferred to off-site business
Tsubakimoto Chain
Kyotanabe Plant 348 1-bromopropane 3,200 0 0 0 0 0
Saitama Plant 87 Chromium and chromium (III) compounds 95 0 0 0 0 47,000
300 Toluene 27,000 0 0 0 0 11,000
Nagaokakyo Plant 53 Ethylbenzene 900 0 0 0 0 200
80 Xylene 1,400 0 0 0 0 200
300 Toluene 12,000 0 0 0 0 2,000
Hyogo Plant 438 Methylnaphthalene 8.3 0 0 0 0 0
Okayama Plant 438 Methylnaphthalene 8.2 0 0 0 0 0
Tsubakimoto Bulk Systems Corp. 53 Ethylbenzene 2,730 0 0 0 0 270
80 Xylene 4,840 0 0 0 0 460
300 Toluene 1,650 0 0 0 0 150
Tsubakimoto Mayfran Inc. 53 Ethylbenzene 1,500 0 0 0 0 420
80 Xylene 2,600 0 0 0 0 700
300 Toluene 13,000 0 0 0 0 3,700
Tsubakimoto Iron Casting Co., Ltd. 412 Manganese and its compounds 3,839 0 0 0 0 0
200 Magnesium and its compounds 4,517 0 0 0 0 0
Total 79,288 0 0 0 0 66,100
* Tsubakimoto Custom Chain Co., Tsubakimoto Sprocket Co., and Tsubaki Yamakyu Chain Co. are outside the scope of PRTR filing.
* As of October 1, 2018, Tsubaki E&M Co. merged into Tsubakimoto Chain Co.

Promoting green procurement

Working together with our business partners (suppliers), we are engaged in efforts toward the effective reduction of hazardous chemical substances contained in our products. In 2006, we established "Green Procurement Guidelines" followed by "Restriction and management standards for inclusion of hazardous chemicals in procured items" in 2007. The Tsubaki Group defines detailed standards for the allowable concentration of individual chemical substances for all Tsubaki Group products containing procured items, and when necessary, request that suppliers submit a "Certificate of non-inclusion of regulated substances". Moreover, in the event that the concentration of a chemical substance in a procured item exceeds the allowable range when the results of an investigation into chemical content are analyzed, we request that the supplier provides a "Confirmation sheet for inclusion of hazardous chemicals and schedule for reduction of use". We then follow up on the issue on an ongoing basis to ensure that the matter is corrected and that improvements are made.
Together with our suppliers, we are working toward thoroughly revising all of our operations to implement more stringent measures, as per the previously mentioned Green Procurement Guidelines, in order to further reduce our current CO2 emissions in response to the growing social demand for such reduction.