Energy / Climate Change

November 25, 2012


Co-op Sapporo to Build Two Megawatt-Scale Solar Power Plants in Eastern Hokkaido

Keywords: Non-manufacturing industry Renewable Energy 

Consumer Cooperative Co-op Sapporo announced on June 27, 2012, that its wholly owned subsidiary Ene Coop will install two megawatt-scale solar arrays (1.2 megawatts and 0.75 megawatts) in Obihiro in eastern Hokkaido. The installations will be used as infrastructure for operating as a Power Producer and Supplier (PPS), the term given to non-utility electricity providers in Japan.

Obihiro boasts the highest amount of annual sunlight in Hokkaido. The Coop & Citizens Solar Tokachi Minami-machi Power Plant in Minami-machi, Obihiro City, will consists of 5,040 solar panels with a total generation capacity of 1,209 kilowatts, while the Coop & Citizens Solar Tokachi Kawanishi-cho Power Plant in Kawanishi-cho, Obihiro City, will have 3,136 panels and a total capacity of 752 kilowatts. Responding to requests from the local government and citizens, Co-op Sapporo included Tokachi, the sub-region of Hokkaido where the facilities will be built, in the power plant names to express their grass-roots origins.

The construction cost is estimated at 750 million yen (about U.S.$9.5 million) including consumption tax. Co-op Sapporo plans to ask its members to buy Mega Solar Bonds to raise 300 million yen (about U.S.$ 3.8 million) of the total cost. The construction of both plants will start in September 2012 and is scheduled for completion in February 2013. The plants will have an estimated annual power output of 2.05 million kilowatt-hours with total annual sales of 82 million yen (about U.S.$1 million) excluding consumption tax.