Business / Corporate

J-Power and other firms to scale down coal-fired power plant project in Yamaguchi Prefecture

JIJI

Electric Power Development Co., also known as J-Power, said Wednesday that it will scale down a project to build a coal-fired thermal power plant in Yamaguchi Prefecture with two partners.

J-Power, Osaka Gas Co. and Ube Industries Ltd. made the decision in light of international criticism of coal-fired power generation, which emits large amounts of carbon dioxide.

The three had planned to build a power plant with a total output of 1.2 million kilowatts in the city of Ube, with operations expected to start in 2026.

Osaka Gas intends to withdraw from the project.

J-Power and Osaka Gas each hold a 45 percent stake in Yamaguchi-Ube Power Generation Co., a joint company that was created to run the envisioned power plant.

Osaka Gas decided to withdraw after assessing business risks associated with environmental regulations from 2030, President Takehiro Honjo told a news conference, citing concerns about the profitability of the plant.

J-Power and Ube Industries are now considering halving the planned output to 600,000 kW, and switching to newer equipment with lower carbon dioxide emissions.

The two companies will obtain a new environmental assessment for the project, with the hope of starting operations at the plant in the late 2020s.

In January this year, Kyushu Electric Power Co., Tokyo Gas Co. and Idemitsu Kosan Co. said they had scrapped plans to build a coal-fired power plant in Chiba Prefecture.