Sunday, April 17, 2011

Greener Japanese Companies

There is a long list of Japanese companies that are investing in sustainable innovation. Many of the world's best known Japanese brands are seeing the wisdom of green.

Sharp has built a solar-cell factory that raised its output to 1.3GW last year, from 790MW the year before. According to Ernst & Young, we could see a fourfold growth in Japan’s solar panel market by 2020.

Sanyo has re-emerged as the world’s largest maker of rechargeable batteries as well as a producer of solar panels. On April 1, 2011, Sanyo Electric became a wholly owned susbsidury of Panasonic.

Panasonic is expanding its energy businesses, from electric-vehicle batteries to hydrogen fuel-cell generators, and hopes to more than triple revenues from the segment to Y3,000bn ($36.4bn) by 2018. Like many other companies in Japan, Panasonic is also making its manufacturing operations greener, doubling the ratio of recycled materials used in its products and raising the recycling rate for its own industrial waste to virtually 100 per cent.

Nissan and Mitsubishi Motors have begun selling battery-driven electric vehicles, building on a green-car market pioneered by Toyota's top-selling Prius hybrid.

© 2011, Richard Matthews. All rights reserved.

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