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Social Innovation

How Green Technologies Can Power a Sustainable Future and Advance Social Innovation

Green Technologies for Sustainable Social Innovation Green Technologies for Sustainable Social Innovation

Fumi Maher, Corporate Sustainability Manager, Hitachi America, Ltd.,
Luis A. Torres, Sr. Director, Global Sustainability, Sullair, LLC. (A Hitachi Group Company), and
Allen Ahlert, Vice-President, Engineering & Environmental Sustainability, Hitachi Computer Products (America), Inc.

Green technologies have the power to not only create a sustainable future but also drive social innovation. World Meteorological Organization and other scientific bodies have been consistently showing increasing global temperature, more frequent extreme weather events such as heatwaves, droughts and flooding, and rising sea levels. It is the responsibility of public and private companies worldwide to take action in reducing their carbon emissions. To ensure accountability, corporations must be willing to share their short- and long-term goals and be transparent about their progress.

Hitachi, a global leader in technology, is committed to achieving carbon neutrality in all of its operational facilities by 2030 and throughout its value chain by 2050. Our goal is to leverage green technologies and share them with our customers, our partners and the world to deliver environmental and social value — thereby creating a more sustainable society.

Sustainability Begins at Home: Remanufacturing at Hitachi

Hitachi has embarked on infrastructure improvements, from transitioning to higher-efficiency HVAC units and LED lighting to expanding our use of solar power. We’re also developing a circular economy strategy that allows us to give our products second and third lives and reduces our reliance on mining virgin materials or depleting natural resources.

Our innovations at Sullair, a Hitachi subsidiary, are an indicator of how long we’ve been working on meaningful sustainability solutions. Although compressed air powers nearly 70% of manufacturing operations globally,1 Sullair offers a whole goods remanufacturing program. This innovation will mark its 10th anniversary in March 2023, and we’ve produced more than 2,700 remanufactured air compressors since its inception. To date, our remanufacturing program has helped offset over 5,000 metric tons of CO2 production through salvage and component reclamation.

Transitioning to Green Energy with Solar Power

Sullair is in the process of expanding the remanufacturing program to optimize its impact. This is in keeping with our goal of making remanufacturing an intrinsic element of design from the outset: ensuring that we design for second, third and even fourth lives, where feasible, from the beginning.

We’re also looking ahead to strategies we can develop to incorporate this approach throughout the supply chain. We recognize that only by pushing our sustainability values and culture across our entire value chain can we fully realize our sustainability objectives.

Elevating Sustainability Standards From the Ground Up

Another of our climate-focused initiatives is the GREEN 21 Team at Hitachi Computer Products (America) (HICAM). Founded in the early 2000s, it serves two purposes: to promote environmental awareness among employees and to coordinate a variety of green and socially responsible initiatives, from reducing waste and increasing recycling to making a positive impact on the communities where we do business.

Based in Norman, Oklahoma, HICAM performs assembly and distribution functions for enterprise-level data storage solutions. Our facility uses wind power as its primary source of electricity, and part of our CO2 reduction plan is to introduce new technology to replace the current system that relies on natural gas boilers to control humidity.

Sustainable and Renewable Energy Sources

In addition to these operational sustainability measures, we invest continually in programs intended to raise employees’ awareness of their own impact on the environment. The GREEN 21 team has stocked our coffee bars with compostable supplies and partnered with a local commercial composting facility. This serves to remind our employees that small, individual actions, when multiplied by our global population, can have a powerful impact on the quality of life on our planet.

With that in mind, we examine every aspect of our site closely in search of large- and small-scale environmental opportunities. Among those we’ve identified are reducing the amount of power required to perform some functions, such as testing; installing a reflecting membrane on the roof that keeps energy absorption low; and introducing landscaping schemes that reduce our outdoor water consumption. Our ongoing plans include installing charging stations for employees’ use in the parking lot to encourage the transition to electric vehicles.

Empowering Sustainability for All

Our goal in developing these green initiatives goes far beyond achieving our own sustainability targets. At Hitachi, our powering good mission extends to every company and industry on the planet. With their own environmental targets to reach, supply chain issues to address, and fossil fuel dependencies to overcome, organizations of every size need tested and proven green technologies. What’s more, environmental stewardship is an important value for the new generation of job seekers. Today’s workers value sustainability and will hold companies accountable for the negative impact that business operations have on the planet.

By first developing and applying green technologies in our own companies, Hitachi can share tested and proven solutions with our customers, our partners and the world to help create a more sustainable society for all.

For more information about Hitachi’s sustainability practices, visit Sustainability at Hitachi.

Fumi Maher, Corporate Sustainability Manager, Hitachi America, Ltd.

Fumi Maher
Corporate Sustainability Manager, Hitachi America, Ltd.

Fumi Maher leads corporate sustainability initiatives including carbon neutrality, circular economy, CSR and DEI at Hitachi in North America. She brings extensive experience of driving sustainability agenda both locally and globally at multiple global organizations and her passion and expertise continues to empower and engage key stakeholders to take actions toward achieving ambitious sustainability vision and mission at Hitachi.


Luis A. Torres, Sr. Director, Global Sustainability, Sullair, LLC. (A Hitachi Group Company)

Luis A. Torres
Sr. Director, Global Sustainability, Sullair, LLC. (A Hitachi Group Company)

Luis Torres, leads the Global Sustainability efforts at Sullair, LLC. A Hitachi Group Company. Luis’ responsibility includes 2030/2050 decarbonization, expansion of their circular economy business, and oversees the company’s aftermarket spare parts business. Leveraging a 20-year background in remanufacturing, business development and operations management allows Luis to develop tangible roadmaps for customer success.


Allen Ahlert, Corporate Vice-President, Engineering & Environmental Sustainability, Hitachi Computer Products (America), Inc.

Allen Ahlert
Vice-President, Engineering & Environmental Sustainability, Hitachi Computer Products (America), Inc.

Allen Ahlert leads the Departments of Development Engineering, Test Engineering, Environmental & Facility Engineering, and Information Technology at HICAM. His group is responsible for design and execution of safe and effective processes in production and distribution, capital planning, IT operations and cyber security, and environmental programs to achieve carbon neutrality, circular economy, and preservation of nature.


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