–Control of Chemical Substances–
Controlling the use of environmentallysensitive substances
- Global/Ricoh Group
Ricoh set original standards for environmentally sensitive substances that could be used in its products in 1993 as an indication of its determination to reduce these substances. Since then, the company has regularly reviewed the standards to incorporate the latest regulations and scientific knowledge into them, and has controlled chemical substances accordingly. In addition, all the divisions engaged in production (design, procurement, manufacturing) have worked together to improve the chemical substance control system. By the end of March 2006, a chemical substance management system (CMS)1 for suppliers was created on a global basis. At the same time, the chemical substance control system within the Ricoh Group was strengthened, completing the management system for chemical substances contained in products within Japan. We completed a system for use outside Japan in July 2006.
Ricoh is currently working on upgrading the management system for chemical substances (MSC)2 contained in products by establishing a “first response flow” in case any harmful chemical substances should find their way into products. The MSC is designed to prevent the expansion of pollution (shipment of partsor products) and the recurrence of such an accident. In addition, in fiscal 2007 Ricoh also began—as part of its risk management— to review the list of chemical substances controlled by the Group to tighten the restrictions on and control of the use of chemical substances that can potentially cause harm to the human body and the environment, and expanded the list in fiscal 2008. To comply with the REACH Regulation, we have been working since fiscal 2007 on the establishment of a communication system to ensure that chemical substance information is communicated to every corner of the supply chain.
In fiscal 2009, we also started to operate a quantity control system that keeps track of which chemical substances controlled by Ricoh are contained in which part of our equipment in what quantities. With this quantity control system in place, we are now well-positioned to take prompt action in the event of permission to use currently approved chemical substances being withdrawn due to regulatory change.
- 1A manufacturing system to prevent the contamination of parts/materials by environmentally sensitive substances; the Ricoh Group supports suppliers’ CMS efforts by providing relevant information and verifying their CMS.
- 2A system to manage the substance groups whose use in equipment is prohibited, restricted, or controlled by the Ricoh Group, as well as to trace and control the quantities of other chemical substances contained in products.
Chemical substance control for supplies
- Global/Ricoh Group
Various chemical substances are used in supplies, including toner and developer. Based on the belief that “product safety is a basic condition for customer satisfaction,” the Ricoh Group ensures the safety of its supplies through appropriate chemical substance controls. We use an information system called RECSIS1 to evaluate safety. Depending on the type of product, we set items for which safety should be confirmed, create MSDS2, evaluate new chemical substances, check on the method of treatment and disposal, consult the relevant laws and regulations, and prepare safety specification data for products. RECSIS can also be used to make automatic safety judgments by referring to the laws and regulations of different countries as well as Ricoh’s standards for the chemical substances contained in supplies.
Using the RECSIS raw material database, we started the pre-registration process under the REACH Regulationin fiscal 2008. The system will be used to comply with future regulations that could require tracking of the quantity data of each applicable chemical substance.
- 1Ricoh Environmental & Chemical Safety Information System
- 2Material Safety Data Sheet
Safety evaluation system for supplies
Reduction in environmentally-sensitive substances
generated while in use
- Japan/Ricoh Co., Ltd.
Ricoh has established its own standards on chemical emissions*1 generated by products while in use and endeavors to reduce these emissions. Chemical substances emitted by products like copiers and printers are measured at the emission measuring testing laboratory located within the company. Ricoh is certificated as an official testing laboratory by Germany’s BAM (Bundesanstalt für Material-forschung und -prüfung; Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing), and measurement data from Ricoh’s testing laboratory will be recognized in registering for the Blue Angel, a German environmental label.
In addition, Ricoh obtained ISO/IEC 17025-based certification for reliable technical competence of our testing and calibration laboratories in February 2012. This enables us to submit authoritative, reliable test results within our capacity in seeking environmental labels and other certifications from independent accreditation bodies, helping us introduce environmentally friendly products to markets more quickly and efficiently.
Under this recent certification, we are qualified to test fine and ultrafine particles*2, for which there is increasing demand for international standardization.
- *1Chemical emissions are chemical substances emitted by products and include ozone, dust, and volatile organic compounds (VOCs).
- *2Fine particles: diameter ranging between 0.1 μm and 2.5 μm; Ultrafine particles: diameter less than or equal to 0.1 μm (Source: ECMA-328 Determination of Chemical Emission Rates from Electronic Equipment, 5th edition [December 2010])