Initiatives for Preventing Pollution

Astellas is promoting regional environmental pollution prevention activities. We set and manage voluntary control values that are stricter than legal standards and pollution control agreements for the major environmental management indicators used to measure air quality and water quality. In addition, we are promoting voluntary activities to reduce the discharge of chemical substances into the atmosphere.

Air Pollution

Reduction of VOC Emissions

Astellas sets voluntary numerical targets for reducing the amount of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) it discharges accompanying the use of solvents in production and research activities, and makes efforts to reduce emissions. Moreover, we have taken steps to minimize the impact of our business operations on our employees, the regional communities in which we work, and the global environment. Such steps include measures to prevent environmental pollution by chemical substances as well as workplace accidents and health hazards, and take the form of adopting new production methods that do not employ high-risk chemicals.

Reduction of NOx Emissions

To reduce the emission of NOx into the atmosphere, Astellas has installed boilers that use gaseous fuels (city gas, LNG, and LPG). The NOx emissions from all business sites in Japan are as shown in the table below. The NOx emissions from non-Japanese production sites in fiscal 2017 amounted to 4 tons.
Astellas does not use equipment that runs on fuel oil, and thus SOx (sulfur oxide) emissions are not discharged.

Changes in Emissions Volume magnifying_glass_s.png

(Unit: tons)

Substance Fiscal 2013 Fiscal 2014 Fiscal 2015 Fiscal 2016 Fiscal 2017
VOC 51 44 42 49 34
NOx 30 28 25 29 22

VOC: Plants and research facilities in Japan
NOx: All business facilities in Japan (excluding branches and sales offices) 


Water Pollution

Astellas measures the extent of its impact on aquatic environments using the biochemical oxygen demand (BOD) load as an index in Japan and the chemical oxygen demand (COD) load as an index in other countries, and makes the data available to the public. In Japan, the BOD load in fiscal 2017 was 11 tons, slightly down from the previous fiscal year. Outside Japan, the COD in fiscal 2017 was 26 tons, slightly up from the previous year.

Since the discharge into water of chemical substances used in manufacturing processes can have a negative impact on ecosystems, we are examining ways of reducing such discharges as much as possible at all stages from R&D onward. With respect to future drug candidate substances discovered and developed by Astellas, we are examining the impact pharmaceuticals would have on ecosystems through the evaluation of their biodegradability in the natural environment. In addition, from fiscal 2015 we evaluated our wastewater management method by using bioassays targeting business facilities that were releasing wastewater into rivers after treatment. We confirmed that they are now less likely to have a significant impact on the ecosystem.

Changes in BOD Load magnifying_glass_s.png

(Unit: tons)

Substance Fiscal 2013 Fiscal 2014 Fiscal 2015 Fiscal 2016 Fiscal 2017
BOD 9 12 11 12 11
Drainage into rivers 7 10 10 10 8
Drainage into sewerage system 2 2 2 2 3

Target: All Japanese production facilities and R&D Centers

Changes in Drainage Volume magnifying_glass_s.png

(Unit: 1,000 m3)

Destination Fiscal 2013 Fiscal 2014 Fiscal 2015 Fiscal 2016 Fiscal 2017
Drainage volume 8,566 8,308 7,416 7,209 7,377
Drainage into rivers 8,159 7,948 7,098 6,984 7,151
Drainage into sewerage system 406 360 318 225 226

Target: All business facilities in Japan (excluding branches and sales offices)