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How are our plants reducing their emissions?

Significant all-round energy savings in France

Even though energy consumption was already at a very low level thanks to the compact building concept, our manufacturing plant in France (TMMF) has made further reductions. They have cut energy consumption by 57% compared to 2002 levels thanks to close monitoring, smart insulation, and state-of-the-art lighting.

Moreover, TMMF is investing in renewables. Every year, 2.5 tons of CO2 are saved thanks to a rooftop photovoltaic membrane, as the one in the picture on the right. Another saving of 18.4 tons of CO2 per year results from a solar wall that heats the outside air flowing into some of the workshops. Recently, a gas boiler was replaced with a biomass boiler, resulting in CO2 savings of 1,285 tons per year.

From the start, TMMF was designed to have the smallest environmental footprint possible. Some storage areas are up to 10 times smaller than automotive industry standards with similar production output. Visually, the low building has been discretely integrated into the landscape.

It’s no surprise that TMMF has been named one of Toyota’s five most sustainable plants in the world. This makes it an industrial benchmark for all other plants of the Toyota Group in terms of environmental performance.

Making our own hydrogen to power our forklift trucks

To promote the introduction and use of hydrogen energy-based technologies to meet the Plant Zero CO2 Emissions Challenge, we have introduced SimpleFuel™ at our Motomachi plant in Japan.

SimpleFuel™ is a simplified hydrogen station. It uses electricity from solar panels at the plant site to produce low-carbon hydrogen from the electrolysis of water. The hydrogen is then compressed and pressurised, and made available to fuel cell forklifts.

One station can produce nearly 9 kg of hydrogen per day, which is enough to keep as many as eight fuel cell forklifts in operation. Moreover, its compact size means it can be installed in small spaces, making it suitable for the quick and convenient refuelling of fuel cell forklifts within the plant.

The SimpleFuel™ hydrogen station has been running at Motomachi since March 2018 where it has further reduced CO2 emissions at the site. If this pilot project in Japan proves successful, management at Toyota’s two sustainable plants in the UK and France could implement this solution in Europe too.

Read the full story on the Toyota newsroom