Challenge 5: Establishing a Recycling-based Society and Systems

Basic Policy

Natural resource consumption is accelerating due to population growth, economic growth, and the emergence of a convenience-based consumer culture. The depletion of natural resources combined with excess waste due to overconsumption poses unique challenges in waste disposal while increasing environmental pollution risk.

To prevent environmental impact caused by end-of-life vehicles, Toyota launched the Toyota Global 100 Dismantlers Project, to facilitate appropriate disposal of end-of-life vehicles. To realize a recycling-based society, it is necessary to grasp the realities of resource depletion while challenging ourselves to create sustainable solutions. Initiatives are needed in four key areas: 1) use eco-friendly materials, 2) use auto parts for longer periods, 3) develop recycling technologies, and 4) manufacture vehicles from end-of-life vehicles. Toyota aims to realize the ultimate recycling-based society, and promotes the Toyota Global Car-to-Car Recycle Project (TCCR) so that we can use resources from end-of-life vehicles in the manufacturing of new vehicles.

Vehicle Recycling Initiatives (ViReports)

Vehicle Recycling Initiatives

The booklet "Vehicle Recycling" details our vehicle recycling initiatives

Toyota effectively uses the earth's limited resources to contribute to the prosperous lives of future generations. To this end, we strive to pioneer cutting-edge initiatives in the field of resource recycling. It is our goal to contribute to the environment and to the establishment of a sustainable society.

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Vehicle Recycling Initiatives

Reduce Consumption of Dwindling Natural Resources Through Use of Renewable Resources and Recycled Materials

Reduce the Use of Petroleum-derived Plastics

Since the early 1990s, Toyota has been collecting and recycling bumpers replaced at dealers as a way to reduce dependence on petroleum-derived plastics. Plastic parts collected from end-of-life vehicles are reused for energy as a heat source or recycled into plastics for non-automobile use.

Major Initiatives during FY2018

  • We teamed up with dismantling companies to continue implementation of trial tests for collecting end-of-life vehicles-derived plastics, investigated the efficient removal of foreign substances, and undertook measures to create recycled materials that can be utilized in vehicles.

More information on trends in damaged and removed bumpers collected and recovered can be found here (Environmental Data I)

Promote the Reuse of Rare Resources and Recycled Materials

Hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs), plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs), fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs), and other electrified vehicles use significant amounts of rare resources compared with conventional gasoline vehicles. There are risks associated with such use, such as resource depletion or unstable procurement. To promote the reuse of resources and the adoption of recycled materials, we are collaborating with partner companies to establish a framework for collecting and recycling HEV batteries and automobile motor parts, along with cemented carbide tools used in production. As of March 2018, we collected a cumulative total of 98,700 end-of-life HEV batteries. Collected batteries undergo inspection to determine which parts can be remanufactured into stationary storage batteries or vehicle replacement batteries. As of March 2018, we recycled a cumulative 35 tons of magnets, and a cumulative total of approximately 170 tons of cemented carbide tools with tungsten.

Major Initiatives during FY2018

  • Toyota and Chubu Electric Power Co., Inc. commenced studies toward a large-scale storage battery system
  • Toyota developed a neodymium-reduced, heat-resistant magnet with up to 50 percent less neodymium, a rare earth element, for use in motors.

Learn more about the Sustainability Data Book 2018 [Establishing a Recycling-based Society and Systems]

Achieve Industry-leading Levels in Easy-to-dismantle Design for Effective Resource Recycling

To promote material recycling of end-of-life vehicles, Toyota directly visits dismantling companies in Japan and overseas to investigate the conditions on the ground and gain insight into the development of vehicle structures that are easy-to-dismantle and separate parts. We have actively adopted these designs for new models since 2003 with the launch of the Raum.

Achieve Industry-leading Levels in Easy-to-dismantle Design for Effective Resource Recycling

Major Initiatives during FY2018

  • Incorporated easy-to-dismantle designs in the Camry, JPN TAXI, and Lexus LS so that dismantling work such as removal of wire harnesses can be performed safely and quickly.

Learn more about the Sustainability Data Book 2018 [Establishing a Recycling-based Society and Systems]
Achieve Industry-leading Levels in Easy-to-dismantle Design for Effective Resource Recycling

Contribute Worldwide Through Appropriate End-of-life Vehicle Treatment and Recycling Technology Developed in Japan

When end-of-life vehicles are not properly disposed of or dismantled, this may not only affect regional environments, but also pose risks to the health and safety of local residents. To prevent these problems, we promote the Toyota Global 100 Dismantlers Project. Through this project, we aim to establish social systems for properly treating of end-of-life vehicles with minimal impact on regional environments.

Major Initiatives during FY2018

  • Toyota prepared a manual on the proper dismantling of end-of-life vehicles and a video manual on airbag deployment for countries and regions that lack suitable dismantling facilities.
  • Responses to the regulation on proper end-of-life vehicle recycling in Vietnam were completed.
  • A vehicle dismantling facility was established in Thailand as a model for Southeast Asia.

Learn more about the Sustainability Data Book 2018 [Establishing a Recycling-based Society and Systems] Contribute Worldwide Through Appropriate End-of-life Vehicle Treatment and Recycling Technology Developed in Japan

Expand Original Recycling Systems for End-of-life Vehicles Worldwide

To realize the ultimate recycling-based society, we promote the Toyota Car-to-Car Recycle Project (TCCR) that is based on the concepts of reduce, reuse, and recycle, aiming specifically at the elimination of resource-related risks and global warming.

Expand Original Recycling Systems for End-of-life Vehicles Worldwide

Major Initiatives during FY2018

  • Conducted trials with a model in Japan as a blueprint for the establishment of a global recycling-based society.
  • Started initiatives to globalize battery recycling systems, with collection and recycling schemes established in each region.

Learn more about the Sustainability Data Book 2018 [Establishing a Recycling-based Society and Systems]
Expand Original Recycling Systems for End-of-life Vehicles Worldwide

Reduce Waste and Use Resources Efficiently in Production Activities

Toyota strives to reduce the volume of waste in its production activities by developing and deploying new production technologies while continually taking stock of the sources of waste (design and production method innovations), resource recycling, resulting cost reductions, and other factors.

In FY2018, Toyota Motor Corporation (TMC) continued waste reduction activities through improvement measures such as sludge volume reduction. The total waste volume, as a result, was 32.7 thousand tons (down 3.3 percent year-on-year), and the waste volume per unit produced was 11.3 kg (down 3.1 percent year-on-year). Globally, Toyota continuously undertook waste reduction measures and made efforts that led to cost reductions. Due to changes in the recycling market, however, a shift from selling recycling materials as valuable goods to paying for recycling and so on, the total volume of waste was 499 thousand tons (up 5.3 percent year-on-year), and the waste volume per unit produced was 47.4 kg (up 5.4 percent year-on-year).

Reduce Waste and Use Resources Efficiently in Production Activities

More information on the scope of coverage here (Environmental Data R)

More information on the breakdown of waste (Environmental Data N)

Major Initiatives during FY2018

  • TMMT, an affiliate in Turkey, reduced waste through changes in the method of wrapping masking film in the C-HR painting process.
  • TASA, an affiliate in Argentina, reviewed end-of-life battery disposal companies and achieved 100 percent battery recycling.

Learn more about the Sustainability Data Book 2018 [Establishing a Recycling-based Society and Systems] Reduce Waste and Use Resources Efficiently in Production Activities

Reduce Packaging and Wrapping Materials and Use Resources Efficiently in Logistics Activities

Toyota is spearheading a broad range of initiatives to reduce the amount of packaging and wrapping materials used in logistics. These include increasing packaging efficiency in shipping containers, using returnable containers* to reduce the amount of unrecyclable materials used, and creating lighter and more simplified packaging and wrapping materials. In FY2018, we succeeded in reducing the amount of packaging and wrapping material per shipment unit to 6.21 kg/m3 (down 9.6 percent year-on-year). The total volume of packaging and wrapping materials used amounted to 45.8 thousand tons (down 10.9 percent year-on-year).

On a global basis, Toyota continued efforts to gather and share information on best practices with each affiliate.

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Returnable
To enable used packaging materials to be returned to original shipping points for reuse.
Reduce Packaging and Wrapping Materials and Use Resources Efficiently in Logistics Activities