LIXIL makes pioneering water and housing products that solve everyday, real-life challenges, making better homes a reality for everyone, everywhere.
Climate change, marine plastics, and infectious disease are some of the innumerable complex social challenges impacting the world today. Tackling these issues is not limited to the scope of countries and governments but requires the participation of the private sector and individuals. Their contributions are imperative to driving change.
The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are unified global goals to achieve by 2030. Published in "Transforming our world: the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development” and adopted by the UN General Assembly in 2015, it consists of 17 goals and 169 targets. With only ten years left until 2030, the United Nations has advocated for the remaining time to be used as a "Decade of Action." There is an urgent need to accelerate efforts.
How does LIXIL contribute to the achievement of the SDGs? LIXIL’s approach is tied to our Corporate Responsibility (CR) commitment and its three strategic CR pillars.
LIXIL’s purpose is to make better homes a reality for everyone, everywhere. Its Corporate Responsibility strategy plays a vital role in pursuing our purpose.
Operating in over 150 countries, LIXIL’s products touch the lives of over one billion people every day. Leveraging its products and services, technology, expertise, intellectual property, workforce, network, information and financial resources, LIXIL believe it is its duty to positively impact the world through business operations.
“At LIXIL, CR is core to our long-term success and, therefore, we believe that our CR and business strategies must align. Taking part in solving society’s challenges through our everyday business activities inspires and motivates our employees to go beyond their everyday goals, which will in turn contribute to LIXIL's long - term competitiveness," says LIXIL CEO Kinya Seto.
Kinya Seto Director, Representative Executive Officer, Executive Officer and President, and CEO
LIXIL's CR mission is "to be the most trusted company by enhancing living spaces through innovative, responsible engagements and initiatives around the world." Among its CR initiatives, LIXIL has established three strategic pillars, which focus on:
1.Issues that require urgent action and are linked to its business
2.How it can utilize its expertise as a maker of pioneering water and housing products and scale to drive positive impact
An estimated 1.7 billion people - about one - fifth of the global population - live without access to safe, sanitary toilets. Among them, 670 million people regularly defecate in the open. LIXIL is tackling the sanitation crisis by tailoring solutions to local needs. SATO toilet products and components are among the key drivers of LIXIL’s sanitation and hygiene initiatives. Developed for rural and peri-urban areas in developing economies, to date over 5.1 million SATO units have been shipped to 41 countries, improving access to basic sanitation for more than 25 million people¹. LIXIL’s initiatives in sanitation and hygiene have been highly acclaimed, including recognition such as the Deputy Chief Award by the Foreign Minister at the 2nd Japan SDGs Award.
¹As of July 2021
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, LIXIL’s SATO developed the SATO Tap, a new handwashing solution for an estimated 3 billion people in the world who do not have access to handwashing services at home. Through the SATO Tap, LIXIL is now promoting effective hand-hygiene worldwide.
By 2025, LIXIL aims to improve the livelihood of 100 million people by contributing to improved sanitation and hygiene.
LIXIL aims to improve people’s quality of life through its sanitation and hygiene solutions, in line with Target 6.2: “By 2030, achieve access to adequate and equitable sanitation and hygiene for all and end open defecation, paying special attention to the needs of women and girls and those in vulnerable situations.”
Unsanitary living conditions threaten the health and wellbeing of people. Diarrheal diseases caused by issues related to hygiene account for the deaths of approximately 700 children under the age of five every day. Hygiene is also important in preventing the spread of infectious diseases such as COVID-19. LIXIL is actively promoting public awareness on the importance of safe and clean toilets and handwashing, while developing products to eliminate the deaths of children through preventable infectious diseases.
Improving sanitation and hygiene standards is essential to achieving gender equality and empowering females. A lack of safe, clean toilets poses particular dangers for women and children. There are countless cases of women or children being sexually assaulted while trying to find somewhere private to relieve themselves. Sanitation issues also contribute to the gender gap in education - the lack of sanitary school toilets has been identified as a reason why girls who have started menstruating feel they are no longer able to attend classes. Safe toilets can help solve these problems.
A SATO supporter in Siaya County, Kenya
LIXIL has been working with local companies and partners to manufacture and sell products in the countries it operates. Creating jobs in the process, LIXIL is contributing to the foundation of the sanitation economy.
Working with various specialized organizations, NGOs, and business partners, as well as leveraging one another's strengths, is essential to solving sanitation and hygiene issues.
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The Paris Agreement aims to mitigate the risk of climate change by keeping the increase in global average temperature to below 2 degrees Celsius, while further pursuing efforts to limit it to 1.5 degrees Celsius. In order to achieve this goal by 2050, CO2 and other greenhouse gas emissions must be reduced to virtually zero.
As a maker of pioneering water and housing products, water conservation and the consumption of resources are a growing concern as well. Approximately 800 million people in the world live without access to water that is safe to drink, and global consumption of resources is expected to double by 2050 at the current rate. Transitioning to a circular economy requires immediate action.
In FYE 2020, LIXIL announced a new environmental vision, “Zero Carbon and Circular Living.” LIXIL will strive to reduce its environmental impact and aim to achieve net zero CO2 emissions by 2050 by offering eco-conscious products and services.
LIXIL’s goal is to be a leader in the field of preserving water and limited resources for future generations.
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Energy used for air conditioning and hot water supply in buildings accounts for approximately one third (32%) of global energy consumption. The energy consumed by LIXIL products during their end-use phase accounts for over 90% of CO2 emissions of the entire lifecycle of LIXIL products and services, from raw material procurement through to product disposal. For this reason, LIXIL seeks to reduce the impact of heating and air conditioning in homes by improving the thermal insulation of housing materials and components. It is also working to apply energy-saving technologies to help reduce the energy required to supply hot water, and to create products and services powered by renewable energy to minimize the environmental impact of homes, offices and other living spaces.
Incorporating environmental sustainability in its business, LIXIL has also joined RE100, a global initiative for corporations adopting 100% renewable energy in its operations. In FYE 2020, GROHE’s headquarters and manufacturing plants shifted to 100% renewable energy in operations. In April 2020, GROHE achieved CO2 neutrality in production - a first in the water industry - and picked up the "German Sustainability Award" for its initiatives.
Cross-section image of RE-PLUS which improves the level of thermal insulation of existing windows with minimal construction
High-Efficiency Cogeneration Systems at GROHE Lahr Plant in Germany
LIXIL is working on the promotion of clean energy by operating large-scale solar power generation facilities that utilize unused spaces and rooftops of buildings, while promoting the introduction of electricity derived from renewable sources. By developing products and services that contribute to energy conservation, energy creation, and thermal insulation in homes and buildings with net zero energy consumption, such as the“ZEH (Net Zero Energy House)” and “ZEB (Net Zero Energy Building)”, LIXIL helps end-users to reduce CO2 emissions every day. These efforts reduce the negative environmental impacts of modern day living.
Mega-solar power plant at LIXIL Chita Plant in Japan
By 2050, approximately 40% of the world's population is expected to be deprived of a stable water supply. LIXIL contributes to the conservation of water resources through products and services such as water-saving toilets and faucets. In addition, in order to promote efficient water use in its business processes, it conducts water risk surveys, as well as implements water conservation measures by introducing water circulation systems that are specific to regions at its various production sites around the world.
Navish Hands-Free Faucet equipped with the eco sensor
With global consumption of resources increasing, there is global demand to transition, one-way consumption economic model to a circular economy. LIXIL is working to develop resource-recycling products and services by recycling raw materials to lower its environmental impact, extend product life by adopting parts that are easy to repair and replace, and designing products that are easy to recycle. Alternative materials are sought to replace and minimize the use of single-use plastics in its product packaging.
Feeding raw materials into the aluminum smelter
INAX AQUAPOWER packaging created ahead of its global expansion that uses pulp to reduce plastic use.
By 2050, one in five people will be 60 years of age or older, with most living as either elderly couples or alone. Currently, about 15% of people in the world have a disability, and this ratio is increasing year by year.
LIXIL strives to help people live comfortably by developing products for homes and other buildings based on its Universal Design (UD) concept, an inclusive design philosophy. It is also working to achieve diversity and inclusion by creating an working environment that caters to 70,000 employees.
Based on its UD concept, LIXIL develops products that are easy to understand, easy to use, safe and secure, and easy to love, so that everyone can live comfortably regardless of age, nationality or abilities. By 2030, LIXIL aims to develop all products based on its UD concept.¹
¹Products and services in Japan
LIXIL develops products based on its UD concept, which is based on four concepts: products should be easy to understand, easy to use, safe and secure, and easy to love. LIXIL believes this will enable everyone to live comfortably regardless of the age, nationality, disability, and ability of the users. By 2030, it aims to ensure that all products are based on the UD concept.
The knowledge and perspectives of a diverse workforce is a key driver of growth and innovation.
LIXIL established a specialized department that promotes diversity & inclusion, to maximize individual characteristics and strengths of employees by providing equal training and career opportunities regardless of gender or age. In Japan, the “Change Our Working Style!” campaign was developed to create a working environment that enables efficient working styles based on individual circumstances, while promoting flat and open communication. In addition, the WING campus, which is home to its global headquarters, incorporates UD concepts including the establishment of toilets that accommodate a variety of employees.
Toilet at WING designed to be inclusive, encouraging users to choose stalls freely.
As mentioned above, LIXIL has been working to achieve SDGs in three priority areas. In addition, ethical business practices (governance, structured business practices, human rights, labor practices, quality/customers, supply chains, stakeholder engagement), which are the basis of all business activities, are also important initiatives in order for LIXIL to continue making contributions for a sustainable future.
LIXIL's ongoing efforts have received high acclaim, such as winning the 2nd SDGs Award, and recently, in order to contribute to the realization of sustainable cities and town development, it is participating in the "SDG House" project, which tackles SDGs in areas related to housing development. LIXIL is both pleased and encouraged that the network of organizations and individuals with the common goal of achieving the SDGs is expanding.
Together with its stakeholders, LIXIL will continue to contribute to achieving the SDGs globally, through its business operations.