Environment-related Materials

VOC Emissions Regulation

Current Status of VOC Emergence

  • VOC sources are classified into mobile sources such as automobiles and airplanes, stationary source such as combustion from boilers and incinerators in factories and buildings, and stationary source of evaporation such as production processes and painting at factories.
  • Of these, stationary sources accounted for about 90%, and as a breakdown, VOCs are emitted much from outdoor painting, factory painting, printing, cleaning, lubrication, and metal surface treatment (pretreatment of plating).

VOC Emissions Reduction Targets

  • We aim to reduce VOC emissions from stationary sources by 30% or more against year 2000 by year 2010 through an appropriate combination of both laws and regulations and voluntary initiatives.
  • Based on the achievement status of the targets in year 2010, we will consider the ideal form of laws and regulations and voluntary initiatives. If the targets are not achieved, there is concern that not only will laws and regulations be strengthened, but also that voluntary initiatives that can be cost-effective and flexible measures will be receded.

Laws and Regulations

  • Of the six types of facilities (Note) that are estimated to have high VOC emissions, those that are larger than a certain emission standard value are eligible.
    (Note) Painting facilities and post-painting dry and incineration facilities; post-use dry and incineration facilities at adhesives use facilities; post-printing dry and incineration facilities at printing facilities; dry facilities at chemical product manufacturing; industrial cleaning facilities and post-cleaning dry facilities; and VOC storage facilities.
  • Business entities are subject to the following requirements: (1) compliance with emission standards (emission exit concentration regulation values); (2) implementation of measures to achieve regulatory values; (3) measurement twice a year and storage of records; and (4) notification to prefectural governors of installation, use, and changes.

Voluntary Efforts by Businesses

  • Any facility that manufactures or uses VOCs can participate in voluntary efforts.
  • Businesses entities voluntarily take steps to: (1) participate in voluntary management plans by industry associations; (2) establish in-house reduction plans; (3) implement cost-effective measures; (4) monitor VOC emissions; and (5) report to the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (annually) through industry associations.