Pollution Prevention

Pollution Prevention Initiatives

As a provider of eco-friendly products, The CITIZEN Group continues its activities aimed at thoroughly eliminating, reducing, and replacing hazardous chemical substances in its manufacturing processes, both in Japan and around the world.

Reduction of Hazardous Chemical Substances

The CITIZEN Group has established targets to reduce PRTR chemicals (in Japan) by 10% by 2024 and by 45% by 2030 compared to FY2018, and it is making reduction efforts such as changing processes and switching to alternative substances. In FY2022, we set a target of a 5% reduction from FY2018, and achieved a significant reduction of 36.3% (71.1 tons). The Group has also been working to reduce the use of hazardous chemicals for many years, and it has already achieved the total elimination of chlorinated organic solvents and other substances (see the table below).

In FY2022, we reduced the usage of 1-bromopropane by 2.1 tons compared to FY2021. This accomplishment was attributed to several improvements, including minimizing excess evaporation and gradually replacing 1-bromopropane with environmentally friendly alternatives.

In addition, we are directing our efforts towards reducing the use of xylene and trimethylbenzene, which are handled in substantial quantities following 1-bromopropane. Our initiatives include active substitution and reduction strategies for various other chemical substances. To achieve our objective of diminishing hazardous chemical components, we are intensifying our focus on technological advancements and facility enhancements within the watch business and the automotive parts sector, where significant quantities of these chemical substances are utilized.

Environmental risk management overseas is also an important issue, and we are thoroughly monitoring the amount of chemical substances used there and are working on reduction efforts.

Reduction Targets and Results of Hazardous Chemical Substances (compared to FY2018)
Target Fiscal year Results
  • 10% reduction by 2024
  • 45% reduction by 2030
2019 8.1% (8.2 tons) reduction
2020 27.2% (27.5 tons)
2021 15.1% (15.2 tons) reduction
2022 36.3% (71.1 tons) reduction
Chemical Substances Subject to the PRTR Act That The CITIZEN Group Has Fully Eliminated in Its Processes
Subject substance Year use was fully eliminated (FY)
Chlorine-based organic solvents 2008
Alternative chlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs)(not including coolants inside devices) 2008
Ferric chlorides 2018
1-Bromopropane Substitution and Reduction
Fiscal year Amount substituted Reduction
2019 6% (2.4 tons) of FY2018 use was substituted Reduction of 8.5 tons
2020 1.6% (0.5 tons) of FY2019 use was substituted 2.0 tons reduction
2021 4.5 tons reduction
2022 2.1 tons reduction

[Case Study] Substitution of 1-Bromopropane


At CITIZEN WATCH Manufacturing's Tohoku Soma Plant, a cleaning solution primarily containing 1-bromopropane has been traditionally used to clean watch cases. In FY2018, the company procured 2,370 kg of this cleaning solution. However, through the implementation of a new cleaning machine and the transition to a fluorine-based cleaning solution, the amount of the cleaning solution containing 1-bromopropane purchased in FY2022 was notably reduced to 1,000 kg, marking a substantial reduction of approximately 58%. Despite this progress, the new cleaning machine utilizing the fluorine-based solution has shown comparatively lower cleaning efficiency than the previous equipment, leading to cleaning residue. Consequently, the complete elimination of 1-bromopropane usage has not been achieved at this stage. In close collaboration with CITIZEN WATCH, the company intends to introduce a more efficient and versatile cleaning machine in the latter part of FY2023. With the aim of ultimately eradicating the usage of 1-bromopropane, the company is committed to leveraging the existing fluorine-based cleaning machine and the upcoming cleaning machine installation.


Cleaning work in the clean room

[Case Study] Efforts to Reduce the Use of Substances Subject to the PRTR Act


At both the headquarters and the Kawaguchiko operation site, media and cleaning solutions containing substances regulated by the PRTR Act are employed for the surface treatment of components. The replacement schedule for the medium (kerosene) and cleaning solution (cyanide) utilized in the barrel processing was previously determined by the number of days, but in FY2022, this protocol transitioned to a usage count basis. Moreover, the kerosene recycling equipment, which had previously been inactive, has been restored to operational status.

As a result of these activities, kerosene (xylene and trimethylbenzene) and cyanide compounds were reduced by 35% and 51%, respectively, compared to FY2018.


Reduction of kerosene use