• GRI103-1
  • GRI103-2

Resource Dependency Policies and Philosophy

  • GRI103-2
  • GRI103-3

Resource Dependency Management

  • GRI103-3
  • GRI301-2
  • GRI301-3

Resource Dependency: Achievements

Reducing Dependence on Newly Extracted Resources to 70%

Demand for mineral and fossil resources is rising rapidly with the growth of emerging economies. According to forecasts, if growth in extraction volumes continues, all currently known mineral resources will have been extracted by 2050. There are some existing mining sites and others under exploration that are located in areas with vulnerable local ecosystems, generating concern about the environmental effects of topsoil excavation, deforestation and wastewater.
To address these issues, Nissan has implemented a policy of minimizing the use of newly extracted natural resources and maximizing the use of recyclable materials from the early development stage while also making structural improvements to facilitate recycling. We are also reducing the use of resources in the manufacturing process and making more efficient use of resources.
In the Nissan Green Program 2022 (NGP2022), our goal is to cut the use of newly extracted resources by 30% per vehicle in fiscal 2022. We intend to increase the use of recycled materials in our vehicles on a global scale, including Japan, Europe and North America, in cooperation with our suppliers.

ELV Programs

Nissan considers the three Rs—reduce, reuse and recycle—from the design stage for new vehicles. Since fiscal 2005, all new models launched in the Japanese and European markets have achieved a 95% or greater recyclability rate.*
We have also joined forces with other automotive companies to promote the recycling of end-of-life vehicles (ELVs) through dismantling and shredding. We have achieved at least 95% effective recycling rate of ELVs in Japan since fiscal 2006. In fiscal 2018, we achieved a final recovery ratio for ELVs of 99.6% in Japan (as calculated by Nissan in accordance with the End-of-Life Vehicle Recycling Law), greatly exceeding the target effective recycling rate of 95% set by the Japanese government.
ELV processing consists of four phases. First, Nissan ELVs entering the dismantling process are recycled, including flat steel, cast aluminum, bumpers, interior plastic parts, wire harnesses and precious rare earth metals. Second, specific items like lithium-ion batteries are collected individually and directed to a dedicated recycling process. Third, residues from the dismantling process are crushed and the metallic portions recovered. Fourth, the resulting ASR is turned into recycled materials.
Since 2004, Nissan and 12 other Japanese auto manufacturers have supported ASR recycling facilities, as called for in Japan’s End-of-Life Vehicle Recycling Law, as an integral part of a system to recycle ASR effectively, smoothly and efficiently. Nissan is taking an important role in this joint undertaking.
We have also established a take-back system for ELVs in Europe. This network of Authorized Treatment Facilities was developed for individual countries in collaboration with contracted dismantlers, contracted service providers and governments in alignment with a European ELV directive.
Additionally, the Japan Automobile Manufacturers Association, Inc. established a common scheme for recovering used lithium-ion batteries along with a system for processing these batteries appropriately, and put both into operation in fiscal 2018.

Developing Biomaterials

Nissan is promoting technical research to replace plastics and other resin materials used in automobiles with biomaterials derived from plants. NGP2022 contains concrete goals for biomaterials development, and these materials are already being used in cars. For example, the coverings on the seats in the new Nissan LEAF are made using biomaterials.

  • GRI305-7

Proper Use of Regulated Chemical Substances

Nissan revised its standard for the assessment of hazards and risks in the Renault-Nissan Alliance, actively applying restrictions to substances not yet covered by regulations but increasingly subject to consideration around the world. As a result, the number of substances covered by the Nissan Engineering Standard in fiscal 2018 rose to 4,043. These steps are thought to be necessary for future efforts in the repair, reuse, remanufacture and recycle loop for resources.

Expansion of Remanufactured Parts

Parts with the potential for recycling include those reclaimed from end-of-life vehicles, as well as those replaced during repairs. In Japan, we collect and thoroughly check the quality of these secondhand parts. Those that receive a passing grade are sold through our retail outlets as Nissan Green Parts. We sell these parts in two categories: remanufactured parts, which are disassembled and have components replaced as needed, and reusable parts, which are cleaned and tested for quality before sale.
In NGP2022, we are enhancing the deployment of Nissan Green Parts in Japan, and we’re also strengthening management to deploy similar kinds of activities in Europe and North America, aiming for twice the parts coverage in 2022 compared to 2016. This initiative provides customers who seek to use cars for a long period of time with the new option of using remanufactured parts.

Alternator
Alternator
Starter motor
Starter motor
Air conditioning compressor
Air conditioning compressor

Joint Venture to Promote Second-Life Use for Batteries

Reducing Use of Scarce Resources

Rare earth elements are scarce resources that are necessary components of EV and hybrid electric vehicle (HEV) motors. Reducing their usage is important because of procurement challenges, as rare earth elements are unevenly distributed around the globe, and the shifting balance of supply and demand leads to price fluctuations.
Nissan is expanding its use of an electric motor developed in 2012 that requires 40% less dysprosium (Dy) compared to conventional EV motors. The motor was first adopted in the Nissan LEAF, and reduced-dysprosium motors are now seeing increased use in hybrid vehicles as well. The 2016 Note e-POWER achieves a 70% reduction in Dy in its motor magnets, and these were also adopted for the new Nissan LEAF in 2017 and the Serena e-POWER in 2018. We are conducting technical research on further reductions for the future and have the ultimate goal of achieving zero usage of Dy in other components as well.

  • GRI103-3

Resource Dependency: Achievements in Waste Reduction

Thorough Measures for Waste Materials

Nissan actively promotes measures based on the 3R approach in its production processes whenever possible, striving to minimize the waste generated and maximize recycling efficiency by thoroughly sorting waste. At the end of fiscal 2010, we achieved a 100% recovery rate at all of our production sites in Japan, including five manufacturing plants, two operation centers and five affiliates. Overseas, we have reached 100% rates at plants in Mexico, China, Thailand, Spain and elsewhere. We are striving to bring rates to industry-leading levels in each global region.
We have been making great efforts to reduce the number of wooden pallets and cardboard boxes used in import and export parts shipping. We began replacing them with units made from steel more than 30 years ago, and we rolled out plastic substitutes over 20 years ago that are foldable and can be reused. We have also been working with our Alliance partner Renault to expand use of globally standardized, returnable containers. Through design activities carried out concurrently with logistics operations, we have recently considered ways to optimize the shape of parts from the development stage, thus helping to reduce the packaging materials required.
Through such efforts, we plan to reduce waste from our production factories by 2% annually in Japan and by 1% annually worldwide—as compared to business as usual (BAU), that is, waste levels expected if no special steps had been taken.

  • GRI306-2

Waste

For fiscal 2018, waste generated totaled approximately 206,645 tons. From fiscal 2018, the boundary of waste data covered by third-party assurance has been expanded globally, which resulted in an increase in the number of reporting sites. Waste generated globally from production sites in fiscal 2018 was 189,282 tons.*

  • This figure is subject to assurance by KPMG AZSA Sustainability Co., Ltd. For details, please see here.

(FY)

Unit 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018
Total ton 173,513 159,345 158,939 152,674 206,645
By region
Japan ton 59,808 63,630 61,115 61,327 69,829
North America ton 58,452 49,129 45,459 35,177 64,514
Europe ton 45,358 37,204 41,110 45,268 49,662
Other ton 9,895 9,382 11,255 10,903 22,639
By treatment method
Waste for disposal ton 13,153 11,355 8,707 8,041 7,231
Recycled ton 160,360 147,990 150,231 144,633 199,414