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Caption: This is the salon zone at Ecozzeria. The room is furnished with chairs and tables made with bamboo, a difficult-to-process native plant that grows in abundance, by using a proprietary technique for processing bamboo as an aggregate material. The bamboo aggregate material has also been used for the circular shades over the ceiling lights. The ventilation ducts in the ceiling are fashioned from cardboard made from old newspaper. Inside and out have been fireproofed by wrapping in aluminum foil.

Ecozzeria Ushers In "Eco Offices"


One person in Japan emits 25 kilograms of CO2 per day. This heavy chair weighs a fraction of that. Visitors to Ecozzeria are invited to pick up the chair to get a feel for the weight of CO2 they emit on a daily basis.
The business district in the vicinity of Tokyo Station is the heart of metropolitan Tokyo. The Ecozzeria environment information office operated by the Ecozzeria Association, established by local corporations, is located on the tenth floor of the area's landmark Shin Marunouchi Building. At approximately 420 square meters, the Ecozzeria premises house the offices for the Association, as well as a range of exhibitions designed to increase interest in environmental problems. There are also spaces for seminars and meetings on environmental issues.

The office has introduced an LED smart system that allows the workers to change the color and brightness of lighting to their own preferences and physical condition using illuminometers and PCs installed at each desk. As a result, power consumption has been roughly halved compared to conventional offices where the lighting is uniform.

In addition, the office has also introduced a radiation air conditioning system that controls indoor temperature by radiation panels fitted with hot/cold water pipes installed in the walls and ceilings, improving on problems with existing air conditioners where, depending on the distance from the ventilation duct, there are differences in room temperature even in the same room. Since thermal efficiency has been improved, the consumption of energy to power the fan and pump for the air conditioner has been reduced to approximately one quarter.

An Ecozzeria employee works at her desk under self-adjustable LED lighting.
The wooden posts that were used in the foundations for the Shin Marunouchi Building before its reconstruction in 2007 have been reused to make floors and a door at Ecozzeria. In addition, the 3Rs (reuse, reduce, recycle) have been thoroughly incorporated in the interior design with tables and chairs made from waste, and benches made of newspaper.

Naka Inoue, environmental events director at the Ecozzeria Association, comments, "At first it felt bothersome to adjust the lighting by myself, but when you change the lighting and the color, using the PC for long hours is much easier on the eyes. The air conditioning system is also popular, and many of the female staff say that sensitivity to cold and stiff shoulders have been reduced." For corporations it is ideal to create an office where the staff feel comfortable, and where it is possible to improve productivity while considering environmental aspects such as preventing global warming.

Anyone is welcome to visit Ecozzeria. The Association is aiming to expand the number of corporations introducing eco offices by validating the actual impact on visitors. Inoue comments, "I believe that there is significant information coming out of this area, which is prominent as an international center for business."