By Watchiranont Thongtep
Last year, Toto announced its intention to contribute to the global environment through various activities related to water conservation.
"We want to highlight an environmental contribution through ‘Toto Global Environment Vision.’ Under this vision, we set six themes [water conservation, global warming protection, contribution to local communities, conserving natural resources, keeping the Earth clean and conservation of biodiversity] to be completed," Hiromoto Harano, assistant general manager for international business coordinating division at Toto Group told The Nation at the Toto Research Institute in Japan last month.
Creating innovative products that save water is one of Toto’s ambitious goals. NEOREST technology allows users to reduce water consumption. Toilets fitted with this technology use only 3.3 to 3.8 litres per flush, which is much less than the first model in 1976 that consumed 13 litres per flush. The company aims to reduce the volume of water required by its products by 1.3 billion cubic metres by 2017.
Harano said the company expects to see the replacement of its water-saving toilets at 80 per cent of total overseas shipments in two years, up from 54 per cent. As of July, the accumulated number of Washlet’s shipments were 40 million.
Energy-saving products is another area the company wants to look at. By 2017, the company aims to reduce Co2 emissions from its products by 5.63 million tons. In addition, its business sites will also apply this approach by upgrading to high-efficiency equipment such as air-conditioners, lighting and transformers.
Furthermore, the company is also putting an emphasis on community-based environmental contribution activities both at home and overseas. In the next two years, the company expects to see an increase in the number of its Green Volunteer participants from 42,500 people to 55,000.
To engage with local communities and develop the next generation, Toto is promoting architectural culture through the support of Toto Gallery MA in Tokyo to exhibit and convey ideas and creative works for architects and designers around the world. This gallery will feature four exhibitions in 240 square-metres of space.
These initiatives truly reflect the thoughts of one of Toto’s founders, Morimura Gumi, who is featured at the Toto Museum in Kitakyushu city, Fukuoka prefecture, which was recently opened to commemorate the 100th anniversary in two years.
"If you always return more than what heaven gives you, you will be rewarded," Gumi said.