CSR Report > Q & A > Environmental Measures

CSR Report

Q & A

Environmental Measures

What is Nintendo's view on the environment?

In order to "Put Smiles on the Faces of Everyone Nintendo Touches," we feel that one of our most important responsibilities is to protect the environment to provide a healthy planet for future generations.

Nintendo Co., Ltd. has established an Environment Committee and implemented an Environmental Management System based on the ISO 14001 certification.

Each of our overseas subsidiaries also has its own committee to proactively promote environmental activities in each region.

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What is Nintendo doing to create environmentally conscious products?

Eco-Friendly Design

Nintendo has established an effort to reduce environmental burden by complying with the environmental laws of each country as a matter to be adhered to in the development of our dedicated video game systems and accessories.

- Green Procurement:

Compliance with internal chemical substance control standards (to ensure no toxic chemical substances are included in the component parts used to develop our dedicated video game systems and accessories)

- Energy-Saving:

Consider how to improve the energy efficiency of our products

- Facilitation of product recycling and overall waste reduction:

  • Design products for safety and easy disassembly
  • Display information on material used for recycling assistance after disassembly
  • Reduce the use of composite materials
  • Use more materials that contribute to resource conservation
  • Consider ways to minimize the end-of-life environmental impact of our products

An example of our use of materials that contribute to resource conservation is the vegetable-based ink and non-VOC ink used in a variety of our products and printed materials. Instead of using petroleum solvents found in standard inks (which are regarded as likely to have an adverse effect on the environment), vegetable-based ink is made from materials such as soybean oil. Paper printed using vegetable-based ink is biodegradable and decomposes easily. In addition, another merit of vegetable-based ink is that it can be removed from paper more easily than regular ink during the de-inking process, which conserves water and energy. Non-VOC ink is also more eco-friendly than vegetable-based ink, which helps keep the volatile organic compound levels at less than 1 percent. Whenever feasible, we use vegetable-based ink or non-VOC ink for the game title labels on packaged software, as well as on the outer casing of hardware.

Green Procurement

In the procurement of parts for our dedicated video game systems and accessories, Nintendo gives special consideration to ensuring that chemical substances toxic to humans or the environment are not included in its products. Nintendo has established its own chemical substance control standards to promote Green Procurement practices by referencing the RoHS Directive and the REACH Regulation in Europe, and toy regulations in countries around the world.

<How Nintendo's Green Procurement Works>

Nintendo procures component parts for our dedicated video game systems and accessories that satisfy our internal chemical substance control standards* (Green Parts) from production partners who are required to verify their compliance with our Green Procurement requirements (Green Suppliers). In addition, when necessary, we test the products and component parts from Green Suppliers internally to confirm they fulfill the requirements of our chemical substance control standards.

* Chemical substance control standards

We have established environmental control standards to control substances in our dedicated video game systems and accessories and component parts that can potentially have an effect on safety and our natural environment. Regulated substances are called Environment Related Substances, and are placed into three ranks: Banned Substances, Restricted-Use Substances, and Substances Under Application Control. For more information, please see the "List of Environment Related Substances." (498KB)

<Certification Standards for Green Suppliers>

Nintendo certifies manufacturers as "Green Suppliers" by reviewing the substance management process of each manufacturing site at the office or factory.

Although this mainly involves reviews of written documents and reports, we also conduct on-site inspections to check the manufacturing sites of our production partners when necessary. Additionally, we may ask them to make specific improvements to their manufacturing processes.

<Certification Standards for Green Parts>

To certify parts as "Green Parts," production partners (Green Suppliers) submit a "Certificate of Non-Use of Banned Substances" to show that their parts or materials comply with Nintendo's chemical substance control standards. A designated internal division also verifies the validity of the certificate content.

Please refer to the Putting Smiles on the Faces of Our Consumers section of the CSR Report website for more information on Green Procurement.

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What kinds of regional laws and regulations related to the environment does Nintendo comply with?

Nintendo promotes environmental compliance both inside and outside Japan, and we have established our own company standards which include the regulations of the countries where our dedicated video game systems and accessories are sold.

● Examples of Our Compliance with Laws and Regulations

- Compliance with the WEEE (Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment) Directive

The WEEE Directive is European Union legislation, which makes producers responsible for the management of waste from the electrical and electronic equipment that they put into the market.

Nintendo cooperates with various authorized collection and recycling programs through Nintendo of Europe to facilitate the proper collection, recovery, recycling, and environmentally sound disposal of such waste. Nintendo of Europe also provides information to consumers about the appropriate disposal of used electrical and electronic equipment according to this directive.

- Compliance with the RoHS (Restriction of Hazardous Substances) Directive

The RoHS Directive is European Union legislation that restricts the use of certain hazardous substances in electrical and electronic equipment in the European Union. Nintendo identifies the materials restricted by this directive such as lead, mercury, cadmium, hexavalent chromium, polybrominated biphenyls, and polybrominated diphenyl ethers in the "List of Environment Related Substances" and has established mechanisms for compliance.

- Compliance with the REACH (Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals) Regulation

The REACH regulation governs the distribution of various chemicals within the European region so that they do not exceed specified amounts. It establishes registration, evaluation, and authorization procedures, in addition to setting usage limitations for manufacturers and importers. When products or processed materials contain chemicals designated by the European Chemicals Agency as substances of very high concern (SVHC), the regulation also requires that information be provided to distributors and consumers, and establishes restrictions for their use. At Nintendo, we inspect products for the presence of substances listed on the SVHC candidate list so that we can promptly respond to regulatory requirements.

- Compliance with the ErP (Energy-related Products) Directive and Other Energy Efficiency Laws

The ErP Directive is a European Union law that requires products to be designed in a way that promotes energy efficiency (eco-design). There are similar regulations in other regions such as the Appliance Efficiency Regulations (California Code of Regulations) in the U.S. and Australia's energy efficiency regulations. All Nintendo products comply with the regulations that apply in the countries where our products are sold.

In addition to complying with the above laws and regulations, we also comply with relevant laws and regulations regarding the chemical substances contained in product packaging, appropriate product markings for recycling, and the creation of recycling programs for used products.

Example of Compliance with Our Independent Standards

- Our Product Safety Standards

Nearly all of Nintendo's products, including game devices, are used by consumers covering a wide age spectrum. Because of this, we have established and comply with our own internal safety standards that draw upon various other standards such as the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act of 2008, as well as considerations for the safety of young children.

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Are the materials used in Nintendo product packaging eco-friendly?

Nintendo uses and actively promotes the use of recyclable materials in our product packaging while ensuring sufficient strength, and also complies with all relevant environmental laws for each region in which we operate.

  • Hardware Packaging: Hardware packaging is made of paper, which is recyclable.
  • Software Packaging (plastic case): Software packaging is made of recyclable plastic.
  • Packaging for accessories*: The packaging for hardware accessories is made from recyclable materials.

* Accessories: Nintendo Switch Pro Controller, Joy-Con Charging Grip, amiibo, Wii U Pro Controller, Wii U Microphone, Wii Remote, Wii Wheel, Zapper, Classic Controller, Nunchuk, Component Video Cable, AC Adapter, Circle Pad Pro, etc.

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What recycling measures is Nintendo taking in each region?

Nintendo considers recycling used products and packaging to be one of its most important responsibilities, and appropriately complies with the laws of each region.

In Japan:

Nintendo Co., Ltd. complies with the Law for Promotion of Sorted Collection and Recycling of Containers and Packaging. To help consumers properly dispose of and recycle waste in accordance with this law, applicable containers and packaging clearly display identification marks to promote waste separation.

In the United States and Canada:

Nintendo of America refers consumers to local recycling programs and organizations, and offers a free Take Back Program for consumers to send used products to Nintendo for recycling. In 2019, Nintendo of America and Nintendo of Canada processed 313.8 tons of returned products of which 99 percent was recycled. Nintendo of America also reused almost two-thirds of returned products in their original form, which is the most environmentally-friendly recycling option.

In Europe:

Nintendo of Europe and other European subsidiaries participate in national recycling schemes to facilitate the proper collection and recycling of end-of-life products and packaging, pursuant to the WEEE Directive, the Packaging and Packaging Waste Directive, and other related local laws and regulations. Nintendo of Europe also participates in the Green Dot program* in certain EU countries pursuant to the Packaging and Packaging Waste Directive, displaying the Green Dot symbol on product packaging.

* Green Dot program
A program started in Germany to promote the recycling of product packaging. Companies participating in this program are required to display the Green Dot symbol on product packaging.

In Australia:

Nintendo Australia is a signatory to the Australian Packaging Covenant and complies with the principles of this industry/government agreement. In addition, since early 2013, Nintendo Australia has offered the Take Back program for consumers to send or drop off used products to Nintendo for recycling.

In 2019, the total amount of product returns and repairs recycled amounted to 2.9 tons, of which nearly 100 percent was recycled.

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What other kinds of environmental measures are taken by overseas subsidiaries?

While Nintendo Co., Ltd. is in charge of controlling the manufacturing process of Nintendo products and related products such as printed manuals and packaging, some of its subsidiaries also manufacture certain printed materials for their markets. Accordingly, these subsidiaries purchase materials that comply with their own standards of green procurement which are based on Nintendo Co., Ltd.'s standards.

In addition, they promote their own environmental practices in line with local conditions, such as using recycled paper in shipping materials and other printed materials, eliminating the use of polystyrene in industrial packaging, and using energy-efficient modes of transportation (modal shift).

Furthermore, overseas offices have adopted various initiatives, such as aiming to increase awareness through the establishment of a team for promoting deployment of the most environmentally-friendly equipment to offices, in addition to other environmental activities.

Nintendo of America has instituted a variety of internal programs and processes that minimize waste, increase recycling, reduce energy and carbon emissions, and decrease overall resource consumption. For example:

  • One hundred percent of our freight carriers have been certified through the EPA's SmartWay program. The program goal is to reduce greenhouse gas emissions through collaboration with the freight transportation industry.
  • We have a close to 100 percent recycling rate for product returns and repair parts, and offer a Take Back Program for consumers with older products, rechargeable batteries, etc.
  • We promote environmentally friendly purchases.
  • Nintendo of America's headquarters was awarded the LEED Gold Rating by the U.S. Green Building Council.
  • Lighting has been converted to use LED sources.
  • We established internal organizations to engage in environmental activities, and are promoting the reduction of CO2 emissions and waste.
  • We purchase Green Energy and participate in the Carbon Balance Program.
  • We participate in the Commercial Strategic Energy Management program offered by a local energy provider to reduce energy consumption in building operations.

In addition to promoting modal shift, Nintendo of Europe proactively works to reduce CO2 emissions in the transport of its products by advancing modal shift and other initiatives. In fiscal year 2012, Nintendo of Europe established the commitment to provide environmentally friendly transport as a policy for the selection standard of transport partners. From January 2020, 100% recyclable shrink foil with 50% sugarcane biomass ethanol content is being used in packaging materials for software packaged with exclusive items.
Along with these efforts, Nintendo of Europe has implemented the following initiatives at its offices.

  • Since January 2012, all electricity used in Nintendo of Europe's offices is derived from renewable energy sources.
  • Starting in 2019, each floor is equipped with a recycling center, to separate paper, plastics, bottles, biowaste, general waste, electronics, and batteries.
  • FSC-certified paper is purchased for printing and copying.
  • Restrooms use toilet paper and paper towels with Blue Angel certification (a German eco-label).
  • Nintendo of Europe (U.K.) converted all of their office lighting to LED.
  • Nintendo Benelux's Belgium office has bought electricity generated 100 percent from renewable energy since June 2009.

Nintendo Australia provides environmentally friendly products by using recyclable materials in product packaging and vegetable-ink for printing.

Some subsidiaries have incorporated electronic document systems for approving documents and issuing order forms to minimize the amount of paper usage.

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