Goal 11 of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) adopted in 2015 by the UN is "Sustainable Cities and Communities." By developing mobility infrastructure as well as technologies meant to alleviate the environmental issues endemic to urban areas, Mitsubishi Electric is doing its part to support sustainable urban development in cities around the world.
Accelerating Rates of Urbanization
According to the UN, 3.5 billion people around the world — about half of the global population — currently live in urban environments. This trend has been accelerating in recent years, with projections indicating that urban dwellers will account for as much as 68% of the world’s population by 2050. The factors driving this shift include better employment and educational opportunities, as well as services and ways of life that can only be found in cities. However, rapid urbanization is also associated with certain inevitable problems.
For example, enormous amounts of energy are consumed as a result of the comfort and convenience that urban residents often take for granted. Also, as vehicles crowd city streets and cause greater traffic congestion, noise and air pollution increases, leading to a decline in the quality of life of these neighborhoods.
With Sustainable Cities and Communities as one of its goals, the UN is striving to resolve problems that are endemic to urban environments in both industrialized and developing countries in order to secure a better future.
Sustainable Urban Development
Mitsubishi Electric is attempting to address urban environmental issues in many different ways. First on the list is SUSTIE, a test facility for net-zero energy building (ZEB) technologies that opened in October of 2020.
When designing this building, Mitsubishi Electric made the most of its expertise as a general electrical equipment manufacturer. SUSTIE boasts a collection of highly efficient equipment, including an energy-efficient air conditioning system, a ventilation system (Lossnay) that uses energy-conserving ventilation to avoid overloading the air conditioning system, low-energy and comfortable LED lighting, a DC power distribution system (D-SMiree) that eliminates electricity wastage, and elevators that conserve energy through high-efficiency motors and regenerative energy recovery.
SUSTIE’s energy usage has been optimized since day one. As early as 2021, the year after its opening, the building created more energy than it consumed, with an annual energy usage 115%*1 below baseline primary energy consumption.
Mitsubishi Electric is truly on the front lines of technological development for a sustainable future. One region in which the company’s technologies are in high demand is the Middle East, which is striving to move away from its dependence on oil in favor of more sustainable economic development.
Since the 1970s, Mitsubishi Electric has been expanding its footprint in the Middle East. Most recently, the company showcased its elevators, escalators, multi-split air conditioning systems, and monitors at Expo 2020 Dubai (held in 2021), where the equipment was incorporated into the design of the Japan Pavilion. The company has renewed its commitment to work closely with and support countries throughout the region as they set their sights on the next steps to achieving sustainability.
Meanwhile, in the field of urban transportation, Shanghai Mitsubishi Elevator Company (SMEC) has installed its elevators and escalators in 652*2 cities across China, where they carry 247 million people up and down every day. The company is steadily fulfilling its mission to deliver infrastructure that is indispensable for the world’s second-biggest economy. In fact, in November 2020, SMEC shipped its one millionth unit — a major milestone for a company that has been developing China’s vertical transportation market with industry-leading technological capabilities since its founding in 1987.
- *1 As of 22nd November, 2021
- *2 As of 31st May, 2021
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