Environmental Education and Communication
Participating in Local Environmental Education
In NGK’s Core Policy on the Environment, we have set action guidelines for education and public relations activities, and conduct ongoing environmental education and awareness activities aimed at increasing employee environmental awareness. Our aim is to deepen the understanding of environmental problems among each employee to inculcate an awareness of environmental conservation activities. We also conduct environmental events and provide information to a wide range of stakeholders, including on-site classes at elementary schools, to increase environmental awareness.
Offering Guest Lectures at Elementary Schools and Children’s Centers
NGK sends instructors to participate in lectures and workshops for young people that are hosted each year by EPOC (Environmental Partnership Organizing Club)*. Our instructors offer classes on water resources and usage in which children can experience how soil can purify water. So far, a cumulative total of 2,300 people have participated in these guest lectures and other environmental education programs held outside of the company.
Our guest lecture activities were suspended in FY2021 in an effort to prevent the spread of COVID-19, but we moved forward with preparations for new lectures.
EPOC (Environmental Partnership Organizing Club): A voluntary organization consisting mainly of companies in the Chubu region of Japan, which was established in 2000. Its purpose is to spread information regarding the environment with the aim of building a recycling-oriented sustainable society. NGK has been involved in the planning and management of this organization since its establishment. EPOC currently has approximately 260 members.
Sharing Information with Other Companies
The EPOC subcommittee led by NGK organizes seminars and field trips several times a year under the theme of corporate environmental management (low carbon, resource recycling, biodiversity, water resources, environment-related laws, etc.) and sends out information to members. In FY2021 we held three online seminars.
Supporting the “Kagayake Aichi Sustainability Research Institute” Research Team
Following on from FY2020, NGK took part in the “Kagayake Aichi Sustainability Research Institute” project launched by Aichi Prefecture and aimed at university students, who represent the future of Aichi.
This project is being directed by Aichi Governor Hideaki Omura and is focused on achieving sustainable eco-action by globally minded university students on environmental challenges put forward by companies.
In FY2021, 8 companies in Aichi Prefecture took part in this project. The challenge we put forward was to work with NGK in developing a global environmental education program that gets people thinking about a sustainable future. The five-member team of university students who took part in this challenge was proactive about engaging in discussion and collaboration with NGK employees, even in the face of severe restrictions on face-to-face meetings, plant tours, and other interactions due to the COVID-19 pandemic. And they went on to claim the award for excellence.
Conducting Third-Party Evaluation of Tokai National Higher Education and Research System Environmental Report
NGK was responsible for evaluating the 2021 Tokai National Higher Education and Research System Environmental Report. Up until 2020, Gifu University and Nagoya University each created their own environmental reports. This time, for the first time, they published a combined report as the Tokai National Higher Education and Research System, and NGK evaluated the contents of this report. It is a highly original report which creatively compiles the combined activities of the two universities as well as the separate activities carried out by each. Through our third-party evaluation, we got to encounter student activities and a University environmental approach which differs from the corporate point of view.
Employee Environmental Training and Skills Development
Environmental Education inside the Company
We conduct position-based training related to environmental management systems to familiarize employees with the aims and content of our environmental policies. We also provide specialized environmental training courses for personnel who will be directly involved in environmental management, as well as special environmental training for the entire workforce. We conduct training related to ESG when employees join the company, are appointed to a new role, or are promoted into managerial positions. This ensures they are aware of the issues to be addressed by each position, and provides guidance on how to make the most of their work.
Environmental Expert Training
In FY2021, to strengthen compliance, we created training materials which could be accessed on-demand. We created five training materials covering topics such as the Air Pollution Control Act and Water Pollution Prevention Act, and plan to commence training from FY2022.
Special Environmental Training
Every year, we invite outside experts to introduce our employees to examples of corporate initiatives which address carbon neutrality, resource recycling, and living in harmony with nature.
Promoting the Acquisition of Qualifications
To continue conducting environmental conservation activities in compliance with laws and regulations, we make an effort to develop and increase the skills of legally qualified personnel. We provide support in each department for the acquisition of environment-related legal qualifications targeting managers engaged in pollution prevention required for the management of each site.
We systematically educate Qualified Energy Managers in the Engineering Department, and Special Controlled Industrial Waste Managers and others involved in waste-related activities in the Environmental Management Department and other business divisions.
Qualifications Acquired as of March 31, 2022 (NGK)
|Pollution Control Managers||Qualified Energy Managers||Special Controlled Industrial Waste Managers||Waste Disposal Facility Technical Managers|
Support for Acquisition of Eco Test Certification
With the aim of ensuring that each employee acquires a strong environmental awareness and a wide range of knowledge with respect to the environment, NGK supports employees in sitting the Eco Test* by lending them reference materials and subsidizing test-related expenses.
To date, a total of 826 people—approx. 20% of all NGK employees—have passed the test.
The Eco Test is an environmental and social certification test administered by the Tokyo Chamber of Commerce and Industry focused on a wide-range of environmental issues.
Eco Test Certiﬁcation
|Number of successful examinees||125||90||37||73||44|
NGK Eco Point System
NGK promotes its Eco Point System in an effort to contribute to regional environmental improvement. Employees earn points for environmental behavior conducted at work and in the home, a portion of which is converted into cash and donated to local government-managed funds (environmental funds).
In addition to the company’s three sites in Nagoya, Komaki and Chita, and the Ishikawa Plant, the system was newly introduced to the Tokyo Main Office and Osaka Branch and sales offices in FY2016.
Donation of NGK Eco Points
The NGK Eco Points earned by individual employees through their engagement in environmental activities are aggregated on an annual basis for each site (Nagoya, Chita, Komaki) and plant (Ishikawa), and top scorers are commended every year. For earned points, employees select from two options: exchange for eco goods or donate to local funds. The number of employees choosing donation is growing every year, indicating increasing environmental awareness.