Photo of ozone from space

Recognized for Protecting the Environment

  • DENSO 75 Year Anniversary Logo
  • Sam Kawai accepts award

    DENSO Manufacturing Michigan (DMMI) president Sam Kawai accepts the 1993 Stratospheric Ozone Protection Award from a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency official.

Since the start of the company in 1949, DENSO Corporation has focused on making environmental protection and preservation a worldwide goal.  The company strives every day to incorporate sustainability into its products, processes and facilities.

While today the company has rebranded its efforts toward the Two Great Causes – Green and Peace of Mind – DENSO officially committed to environmental protection with the launch of DENSO EcoVision 2005 in 1997.  The initial document outlined the company’s status eight years into the future and was updated in 2004 (EcoVision 2015) and again in 2016 (EcoVision 2025)– its current state.

North America Leads the Way

DENSO in North America was leading the way well before though.  In 1993, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recognized the company as a world leader in protecting the ozone layer from harmful automotive air conditioning refrigerants with the Stratospheric Ozone Protection Award.

DENSO earned the award by taking the lead in developing methods to convert air conditioning systems to the safer refrigerant HFC-134a, which replaced CFC-12, an ozone-depleting substance to be banned worldwide after 1995.

The annual EPA Stratospheric Ozone Protection Awards recognized exceptional leadership and technical achievements in the elimination of ozone depleting substances. DENSO at the time was among 36 international corporate winners, including the Coca-Cola Company, Martin Marietta Astronautics, Lufthansa German Airlines and Matsuhita Electric Industrial Company.

The Awards Continued Coming

In 2002, DENSO was recognized again by the EPA and honored with the Climate Protection Award for commercializing the world’s first fluorocarbon-free car air conditioner.  The EPA again honored DENSO with the Climate Protection Award in 2004 for developing an electrical inverter air conditioning system for the Toyota Prius.  Finally, the Climate Protection Award was presented for DENSO’s innovative new technology – the Ejector Cycle.

Stemming from many environmental advancements, DENSO researchers and engineers partnered with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) – a United Nations body to assess the science related to climate change.  Lead researcher Toshio Hirata and other DENSO team members were recognized for contributing to the reports of the IPCC, which was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2007.

The company vision remains the same today as it did in the beginning – find ways to safeguard the environment and manage operations in an environmentally sustainable manner.  As society moves toward electrification and other advanced mobility, the next generation heat pump refrigerant is being designed for hybrid and electric vehicles.  Continuing the tradition of being green and providing a safer, more efficient place to live for future generations.