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World Water Day (March 22, 2012) - Water Management Initiatives

Mar, 21 2012

Advancing Initiatives to Conserve Water Resources Around the World

Bridgestone Corporation today announced initiatives to ensure the Bridgestone Group plays a proactive role in efforts to realize a sustainable society. The Group has a clear long-term aspiration for environmental activities through its Environmental Mission Statement, which calls on the Group to focus on three important objectives: ecological conservation, resource conservation, and carbon emissions reduction. In accordance with this mission, the Group is promoting globally a wide variety of projects and business processes that benefit the environment.

In conjunction with World Water Day, declared by United Nations General Assembly, Bridgestone will highlight its water management initiatives, which promote the sustainable use of water resources in its manufacturing processes. These initiatives include using water in an efficient manner, thoroughly managing waste water, as well as disclosing the results of these and other initiatives.

In the future, water shortages are projected to occur on a global scale, due to population growth, climate change, and other factors, resulting in a rise in the number of people without sufficient access to water. For this reason, actions such as securing stable supplies of safe and clean water, efficiently using water resources, and preserving water-based ecosystems must be taken throughout the world.

Going forward, the Bridgestone Group will continue to advance its water management initiatives in accordance with the Group’s Environmental Mission Statement.

Examples of Water Management Initiatives

Region: Europe
Activity: Improving water efficiency
Because water resources are extremely precious in the European region, for some time Bridgestone Europe NV/SA (BSEU) has identified reducing water usage volume in manufacturing processes as one of its environmental targets. As a result, all tire plants in the region are showing continuous improvement in this area, based on the framework of the Group’s original integrated environmental management system.
Activity details
• Recycling coolant by installing cooling towers
• Optimizing water supply by fundamentally revising pipe arrangement
• Replacing existing equipment with highly efficient equipment
• Reducing coolant usage volume by improving manufacturing processes (reducing vulcanization time etc.)
• Ensuring rigorous maintenance of water-using equipment
Benefits
• Reduced 2010 water input volume by 30% versus 2003 (all eight BSEU tire plants*)
• Improved water input volume by 47% per unit of production

*France: Béthune
Spain: Bilbao, Burgos, Puente San Miguel
Poland: Poznan, Stargard
Italy: Bari
Hungary: Tatabanya

Region: Japan
Activity: Introducing closed drainage at plant
-Recycling 80% of wastewater-
Kitakyushu Plant is taking steps to recycle water by building a system that is able to monitor water usage volumes in real time and introducing closed drainage.
Activity: Installing eco-watching monitors
As well as showing volumes of service water recycled and drainage status, a monitor installed in the plant’s reception area continuously displays other environment-related information, which the system incorporates, in Kitakyushu Plant.

Region: Thailand
Activity: Using rainwater
-Using rain that falls within the site as water for manufacturing processes-Bridgestone Carbon Black (Thailand) Co., Ltd. (BSCB) is taking steps to recycle water by building a system that is able to monitor water usage volumes in real time and by introducing closed drainage.

Region: The United States
Activity: Rainwater harvesting project for the Butterfly Garden
Firestone Building Products Company, LLC operates a construction materials business. As part of its support for environmental education, it coordinates the garden, called the Butterfly Garden, of an elementary school near its operating base. The Bridgestone Group will further initiatives aimed at heightening children’s environmental awareness from an early age by using rainwater to water the garden, planting trees, and undertaking manufacturing that uses recycled resources.