Sustainability Awards and Other Measures Aimed at Raising Employee Awareness of Sustainability

SUMITOMO RUBBER INDUSTRIES TOP > Sustainability > Priority Issues > Integrity (Integrity for Society) > Sustainability Awards and Other Measures Aimed at Raising Employee Awareness of Sustainability

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Sustainability Awards

  • The Sumitomo Rubber Group

On December 7, 2022, we held the “Sustainability Awards” ceremony. An annual Group-wide event, the ceremony is aimed at commending those who contribute to the creation of a sustainable society through engagement in sustainability activities either in workplace or individual level. In the same year, we redefined the “G” of our “GENKI” Sustainability Activity Guidelines, changing it from “Green” to “Governance” while shifting items previously pursued under “Green” to “Integrity” or “Ecology.” In these and other ways, we have updated our approach to sustainability to better promote all relevant activities.

Although the impact of the spread of COVID-19 caused our employees to limit or cancel their activities in 2022, we nevertheless received a total of 72 entries from Group members around the world. In particular, nine of the 14 entries in the Ecology-Business category were made by overseas business bases, representing the highest number of overseas applicants among all categories. On the day of the ceremony, Grand Prizes and Excellent Awards were granted to five participants and two participants, respectively. At the same time, we granted awards to recipients of the Sustainability Challenge, a program organized to solicit best practices and slogans regarding tangible actions to be taken by each employee to reduce CO2 emissions with the overall aim of raising sustainability awareness among our entire workforce.

Recipients of Grand Prizes in the Second Round of Sustainability Awards Program

Ecology-Nature Category

  • Recipient: Greening Team, General Affairs Section, Ichijima Factory, Sports Business HQ
  • Details: Chosen to receive the “Prime Minister’s commendation for Contributors to Greening Promotion”

The team has been engaged in greening initiatives to create a factory loved by its local community and, to this end, endeavored to protect rare species as part of community and social contribution activities.

Ecology-Business category

  • Recipients: Dunlop Retread Service Co., Ltd., Ono and Hokkaido factories
  • Details: Promoted initiatives to achieve carbon neutrality while improving and invigorating the workplace environment

These factories have assiduously engaged in the introduction of solar power collectors and, in 2022, completed the additional installation of these facilities, playing an active part in the reduction of CO2 emissions. The factories also contributed to the reduction of nighttime energy and costs by utilizing the energy storage functions of EVs purchased as company vehicles. Specifically, energy was stored in these vehicles during daylight hours and holidays when they were not in use and then later utilized to power nighttime lighting.


Kindness Category

  • Recipient: An ROESG activity team dedicated to raising the ratio of female engineers
    Shirakawa Factory: Kida, Mafune; Nagoya Factory: Okuma, Fujiwara; Izumiotsu Factory: Yoshimine; Ichijima Factory: Otsuki; Kakogawa Factory: Minami: Miyazaki Factory: Tachimoto; Human Resources Department Diversity & Inclusion Section: Takami, Tsuruno
  • Details: Engaged in initiatives to raise the ratio of female engineers

These individuals gathered information from each factory site to develop an environment that is friendlier to female employees working on the manufacturing front lines. They have analyzed issues and formulated action plans aimed at making improvements through the implementation of specific measures, including capital expenditure.

Integrity Category: Individuals

  • Recipient: Lee Anderson, Marketing Department, South Africa
  • Details: Launched the NPO “One Hope”

The recipient has founded an NPO to support people suffering from homelessness or other forms of economic hardship in impoverished areas. Specifically, he works to deliver meals and clothing to such people while striving to help them regain economic independence and social success via the provision of referrals to rehabilitation facilities. This employee has continued to engage in these locally-rooted activities while acting in collaboration with administrative agencies.

Integrity Category: Workplaces

  • Recipient: Joanne De Freitas, South Africa
  • Details: Donated a groundwater-drawing well to an elementary school in Ladysmith and residents of neighboring communities

The elementary school, attended by 1,882 students, had no running water for five years despite the presence of its own tap water system. Regaining access to safe water was considered a matter of urgency amid the COVID-19 pandemic, both to prevent the spread of the virus and to secure hygiene in general. Working in collaboration with fellow community members, the recipient successfully drilled a well, which now ensures the supply of safe water.


Distinguished Service Award

  • Recipient: Yoshiyuki Hatakeyama, Ichihara Sales Office, DUNLOP TYRE CHUO Co., Ltd
  • Details: Saved the lives of six people by rescuing them from a fire that broke out on a marine vessel off Kisarazu

The award is given in recognition of activities without distinction between superior and inferior (e.g., life-saving endeavors). In September 2022, while engaged in boat fishing with a friend in Kisarazu Bay, Chiba Prefecture, this employee happened to notice that a fire had broken out on a pleasure boat cruising nearby. Along with his friend, he rescued and secured the safety of six people, including children, from the burning boat. In recognition of their calm judgment and brave action, the two men were granted a letter of gratitude from the Chief of the 3rd Regional Coast Guard Headquarters.

“Sustainability Challenge” Activities

Since 2021, we have implemented “Sustainability Challenge,” an in-house campaign that is intended to further enhance employee awareness of sustainability on a Companywide basis. As part of this campaign, we encourage each employee to take specific action to reduce CO2 emissions while soliciting slogans on sustainability. In 2022, the number of participants in this campaign totaled 14,285, around 3.5 times the number recorded in the previous fiscal year. We thus achieved a 509-ton reduction in CO2 emissions in terms of annual emission volume.

Sharing Information regarding Sustainability Activities and Implementing Relevant Training

  • The Sumitomo Rubber Group

In fiscal 2008, our monthly in-house magazine “PULS” began featuring a regular article under the heading “Our CSR Activities.” The articles focus on introducing CSR activities undertaken by individual business bases to serve as a vehicle to convey the latest information regarding the Group’s CSR activities to employees. When the magazine transitioned to a web-based publication in January 2020, the above article was renovated and rebranded as “Our Social Contribution Activities,” and has continued to update readers about the status of activities undertaken by each business base but now twice a month. We have also established the “CSR Webpage,” which is accessible via the Company intranet, to disseminate information regarding social contribution activities undertaken across the Sumitomo Rubber Group. This webpage serves as a database through which Group employees can obtain necessary information at any time.

Furthermore, in fiscal 2021, we held the first round of “Sustainability Study Sessions” open to all Group members in order to provide them with opportunities to learn about sustainability. The 2022 round of these events consisted of two sessions, with each session lasting one hour, and were attended by a total of 725 employees.