The Canon Group conducts environmental assurance activities to achieve our environmental objectives and realize the environmental vision. Led by the Corporate Sustainability Headquarters under the Executive Vice President of Canon Inc., we conduct environmental activities in a global system that unites product operations, manufacturing sites and marketing companies worldwide. The Group Executive for Corporate Sustainability, a position held by a senior Canon Inc. executive, reports monthly to the Executive Vice President on all environmental activities for approval. When a global environmental issue arises, such as climate change, the impact of which on the Canon Group’s business needs to be assessed, the Group Director responsible for sustainability reports it to the Chief Executive Officer and Vice -Executive Chairman and seeks approval of direction in response to associated risks and opportunities as well as associated actions to be taken.
The Sustainability Headquarters ensures the proper management of this system by collecting information on laws and regulations related to the environment, establishing environmental policies and rules for the entire Group, and planning and managing the methods assessment of environmental assurance activities.
Environmental Management System
The Canon Group has implemented an Environmental Management System (EMS) covering its operational sites worldwide as a mechanism for continuous improvement of environmental assurance activities in accordance with ISO 14001.
The EMS promotes environmental assurance activities (Do), which are linked to the activities of each division (product operations, operational sites and Group companies). In turn, we set annual and medium-term environmental objectives (plan) and establish action plans and significant measures to achieve these objectives, which are reflected in our business activities. In addition, we carry out environmental audits to verify the progress of initiatives as well as issues to be addressed in each division, and environmental performance assessments, to assess our environmental performance (Check). We then strive to continuously improve and strengthen our environmental assurance activities (Act). By implementing the PDCA cycle for each division’s environmental assurance activities, we achieve continuous improvement and enhancement and advance the environmental assurance activities of the entire Canon Group.
Tracking progress towards environmental goals
Each operational site submits a monthly report to the sustainable development headquarters concerning its energy consumption (CO2 volume of emissions), volume of waste generation, volume of chemical substance emissions and volume of water use. The GEC aggregates data to monitor the evolution of environmental objectives and reports monthly to the Board of Directors, to the general managers of the business departments and to the general management of the Group’s companies. In addition, the assessment and the risks identified are subject to the PDCA cycle of the environmental assurance activity within the common framework of the Group’s environmental management system based on the ISO 14001 standard.
Product environmental assessments
Canon conducts an environmental assessment during the marketing process to verify whether a product meets the legal product environmental requirements and other applicable product requirements and has achieved the necessary environmental performance. We begin the assessment by assigning an environmental performance objective to the product at the product planning stage. Before making the decision to market the product and start mass production, Canon assesses whether this objective has been achieved and verifies whether the product also meets applicable legal and other requirements.
Confirmation of the effectiveness of environmental management (internal environmental audit)
Canon uses an internal environmental audit to confirm the effectiveness of its environmental management system. The audits are made up of head office environmental audits carried out by the sustainable development head office, environmental audits of operational sites and environmental audits of products carried out by the operational sites and product operations audit divisions. Mutual inter-site audits are carried out in certain locations. The results of internal environmental audits are compiled by the Corporate Audit Management Section of Sustainability Headquarters and reported to the Chief Executive Officer and Executive Vice President as part of management reviews. In 2021, audits found no major non-compliances or violations. From a perspective of continuous improvement and prevention, we take measures to rectify even minor shortcomings in the management of operations.
Obtaining consolidated ISO 14001 certification (External audit)
Manufacturing and marketing companies around the world achieve consolidated ISO 14001 certification as an objective, third-party assessment of EMS effectiveness. Since 2021, ISO 14001 certification covers Canon Inc. as well as 123 Group companies (587 operational sites) in 40 countries and regions.* We received the positive assessment from the accreditation body that “In the context of a changing business environment, the Canon Group as a whole has identified new risks and opportunities associated with potential expansion into new business areas, and integrated them into its EMS.” The Group’s acquisition of consolidated certification has supported the strengthening of corporate governance and effective environmental management.The Sustainability Headquarters oversees Canon’s environmental assurance activities and reports on the progress of relevant activities to the approval of the President and CEO of Canon Inc. as well as the Executive Vice President.
1. 99.9% of Canon Inc. and consolidated manufacturing companies worldwide (100 or more employees) have achieved ISO 14001 certification, based on CO2 issue volume
2. Certifications obtained
Compliance with environmental regulations and response to complaints
Thanks to the implementation of a coordinated Group-wide environmental management system, Canon has gone through 2021 without a single violation of the law or a single accident having a serious impact on the environment, including including incidents related to water quality or quantitative permits. Although there have been some noise complaints at our operational sites, all issues have been satisfactorily resolved with appropriate measures.
Environmental performance reviews coordinated with company management
Through environmental performance reviews, the results of the environmental activities of the various Headquarters divisions, operational sites and marketing companies are assessed and rated twice a year. Since 2001, these scores have been incorporated into company performance in consolidated performance assessments. The Sustainability Headquarters defines the environmental assessment criteria and performs the assessments, which represent approximately 10% of the overall consolidated performance assessment. The environmental assessment criteria mainly concern compliance with laws and company rules, the achievement of environmental objectives, the improvement of the environmental performance of products and environmental communication. The results of the assessment are announced within the Group on a half-yearly basis. The results are used in the assessment of the manager responsible for a Head Office division and the president of an industrial or commercial company in the Group. Thus, Canon incorporates the environment into its assessment of business performance.