Asahi Kasei Group's ESH & QA | Sustainability | Asahi Kasei

Asahi Kasei Group's ESH & QA

ESH & QA

The Asahi Kasei Group's operations are expanding in the three sectors of Material, including chemicals and electronics businesses which handle chemical substances, Homes, including construction materials, and Health Care, including pharmaceuticals and medical devices. Along with the expansion of these three sectors, we have recharacterized the activities previously identified as Responsible Care* which are now referred to as ESH & QA (Environment, Health, Safety, and Quality Assurance). We remain committed to environmental protection, quality assurance, and occupational health and safety through risk management and responsible business activities to achieve comfortable workplaces in accordance with our Group Vision of providing new value to society by enabling “living in health and comfort” and “harmony with the natural environment” and Group Mission of contributing life and living for people around the world.

  • *Responsible Care, advocated by the Japan Chemical Industry Association, represents the commitment and initiative to secure and improve safety and environmental protection at every step of the product life cycle through the individual determination and responsibility of each firm producing and handling chemical products, together with measures to gain greater public trust through disclosure and communication.

Risk management and responsible business activities of the Asahi Kasei Group Risk management and responsible business activities of the Asahi Kasei Group

Message from the Executive for ESH & QA

In May 2022 we celebrated the centennial of Asahi Kasei's founding. During the past hundred years we continued sustainable growth by successively cultivating new fields of business with every employee passionately taking challenges. We are now turning to new challenges for the next hundred years together with 45,000 colleagues around the world.
The corporate operating environment has changed dramatically with efforts for decarbonization and greater awareness of companies' place in society. Asahi Kasei's unchanging Group Mission is to contribute to life and living for people around the world. We aim to achieve a virtuous cycle of two mutually reinforcing aspects of sustainability by contributing to a sustainable society and achieving sustainable growth of corporate value. While advancing transformation regarding "GDP" (Green, Digital, People) we are rolling out various measures for environmental protection, quality assurance, and health and productivity management as we provide reliable solutions to customers.
Safe and stable operation is a prerequisite for the virtuous cycle of sustainability we seek, and essential for our existence as a going concern. As we have had serious accidents in recent years, we are working to avoid recurrence by strengthening preventative measures and curtailment measures, while fostering a culture of safety through our company-wide Life Saving Actions program. Regarding GHG, we are targeting a 30% reduction of our own emissions by 2030 from the fiscal 2013 level, and aiming for the goal of net-zero by 2050. Furthermore, we continue to advance the development of products that contribute to reduced emissions throughout society. We believe such measures will enable us to provide high corporate value to our various stakeholders.

Masatsugu Kawase
Executive Officer for ESH & QA
Asahi Kasei Corp.

Policy

ESH & QA at the Asahi Kasei Group is guided by the following policy.

Asahi Kasei Group ESH & QA Policy

We give the utmost consideration to environmental protection, quality assurance, operational safety, workplace safety and hygiene, and health maintenance, throughout the product life cycle from R&D to disposal, as preeminent management tasks in all operations.

  • We give full consideration to the global environment and make efforts to reduce the environmental burden of all operations.
  • We continuously provide safe products and services with the quality that gives customers a sense of security and satisfaction.
  • We strive for stable and safe operation while preventing workplace accidents and securing the safety of personnel and members of the community.
  • We strive for a comfortable workplace environment, and support the maintenance and promotion of employee health.

In addition to maintaining legal compliance, we set self-imposed targets for continuous improvement, while performing proactive information disclosure and communication to gain public understanding and trust.

Revised on April 1, 2022

Management framework

The management system of Asahi Kasei Group ESH & QA is maintained in accordance with our Group ESH & QA Management Guidelines and other internal standards. The ESH & QA Committee has been established under the direct control of the President to deliberate concerning plans and their results. This committee also cooperates with the Sustainability Committee, which promotes sustainability across the Group. In addition, the ESH & QA Promotion Council sub-committee gathers regularly, and ESH & QA initiatives are continuously improved with the repetition of Plan-Do-Check-Act (PDCA) cycles at the Regions and Works*, business units, and Group-wide.
Concerning ESH & QA management systems, we have obtained ISO 14001 environmental management system certification for environmental protection and an Occupational Health & Safety Management System (OHSMS) has been adopted for workplace safety, hygiene, and health. Regarding Quality Assurance, under the supervision of Corporate Quality Ensurance, each Strategic Business Unit and Core Operating Company establishes a management system such as ISO 9001, working daily to reinforce quality assurance, to ensure the provision of safe and reliable products and services to customers and society. Regarding health and productivity management, our Health & Productivity Management Committee meets twice per year in principle, to formulate basic policy regarding health & productivity management, set targets, and evaluate results.

  • *A site or group of sites consisting of several plants and facilities is called a Region or Works. The Senior General Manager of each Region or Works is responsible for the unified implementation of ESH & QA in the respective Region or Works.

ESH & QA Committee Management Organization

  • Board of Directors Management Council President Sutainability Committee Responsible Care Committee Asahi Kasei <Chair> President RC Officer Corporate ESH Officer Quality Ensurance Officer Senior General Manager of Corporate ESH Senior General Manager of Corporate Quality Ensurance General Manager of Corporate Health Care Promotion Center <RC Implementation Manager> Senior General Manager of each Region Senior General Manager of each Works President of each SBU Senior General Manager of Corporate Research & Development Senior General Manager of Corporate Production Technology Core Operating Companies Presidents of core operating companies RC Promoters RC Promoter

ESH & QA Committee/ESH & QA Promotion Council

ESH & QA Committee Chair Asahi Kasei President
Committee members Asahi Kasei Executive Officer for ESH & QA, Asahi Kasei Corporate ESH Officer, Asahi Kasei Corporate Quality Ensurance Officer, Asahi Kasei ESH & QA Implementation Manager, Asahi Kasei Senior General Manager of Corporate ESH, Asahi Kasei Senior General Manager of Corporate Quality Ensurance, General Manager of Corporate Health Care Promotion Center, Core Operating Company ESH & QA Implementation Managers
Observers Asahi Kasei Audit & Supervisory Board Members, persons designated by the Committee Chair
Secretariat Corporate ESH, Corporate Quality Ensurance
Frequency of meetings Once per year
ESH & QA Promotion Council Chair Asahi Kasei Executive Officer for ESH & QA
Committee members Asahi Kasei Corporate ESH Officer, Asahi Kasei Corporate Quality Ensurance Officer, Asahi Kasei Senior General Manager of Corporate ESH, Asahi Kasei Senior General Manager of Corporate Quality Ensurance, General Manager of Corporate Health Care Promotion Center, Asahi Kasei ESH & QA Promoters, Core Operating Company ESH & QA Promoters
Secretariat Corporate ESH, Corporate Quality Ensurance
Frequency of Meetings 4 times per year

Targets and results

ESH & QA education and training

In order to ensure the advancement of ESH & QA activities, the Asahi Kasei Group conducts practical ESH & QA education and training concerning basic knowledge of and theories about ESH & QA. The training program applies to all key personnel who implement ESH & QA, including production managers and EHS managers, as well as candidates for those positions, group leaders of research departments, and EHS personnel.
Each fiscal year, we hold 4-day training courses especially for newly appointed staff covering general ESH activities, employee health, operational safety, environmental protection, and workplace safety & hygiene. In fiscal 2021, the course was offered both as a self-study course and a one-day web lecture, with a total of 125 personnel taking the course. In addition, with the goal of improving the Group's ESH & QA level, a training course for assistant chiefs that was formally initiated in fiscal 2012 continues to be held and improved while incorporating feedback. In fiscal 2021, the course was offered both as a self-study course and a half-day web lecture, with a total of 221 personnel taking the course.
Regarding QA training, we have held the Quality Assurance Forum since fiscal 2017 as training for core personnel involved in QA. Over a six-month period, selected younger and mid-level employees across the Group attend lectures by outside experts (mainly university professors at the forefront of the Japanese Society for Quality Control) and join in group discussions. In fiscal 2021, 55 employees took part. Regarding chemical substances control and product safety, various training programs are held throughout the Group each year. In fiscal 2021, nine different curriculums were implemented. Especially with respect to Japan's Act on the Evaluation of Chemical Substances and Regulation of Their Manufacture, etc., Industrial Safety and Health Act, and Poisonous and Deleterious Substances Control Act, basic training is continually held several times each year, with some 800 employees participating in fiscal 2021. We will continue to promote education and training to meet various needs both inside and outside the company.

ESH & QA Conference

The Asahi Kasei Group has held annual RC Conferences, at Asahi Kasei Corp., Core Operating Companies, and each Region. The conferences were held to share information and revitalize RC activities by reporting on their status, holding presentations on activities, listening to lectures by experts invited from outside the company, and presenting Safety Awards. The fiscal 2021 Asahi Kasei RC Conference was held in December in hybrid format with 2,300 participants. Starting from fiscal 2022, it will be held as an ESH & QA Conference with a framework of more clear responsibility for revitalizing ESH & QA activities and sharing information.

  • Asahi Kasei President Hideki Kobori gives the opening remarks at the 2021 RC Conference
  • Special lecture by Professor Mori