JERA Co. Inc., the largest Japanese liquefied natural gas buyer with 35 million tonnes per annum of volumes and control of a fleet of 20 LNG carriers, has launched the environmental impact process for upgrading one of its key power plants at Chita in Aichi Prefecture.
JERA is Japan’s biggest fossil-fuel generator being owned jointly by Tokyo Electric Power Co. and Chubu Electric, the two largest power companies.
The joint venture company currently operates and provides fuel for a total of 26 power plants in Japan and imports LNG into 11 of Japan’s network of 37 terminals.
JERA’s power plants have 70 gigawatts of capacity and the company is in the process of upgrading existing LNG and steam plants and also proposes to close its 2.2GW of coal-fired plants by 2030.
The current project for Chita in the Chubu region, whose capital is Nagoya, is for the construction of new Units 7 and 8 at the plant which will use the most modern combined-cycle gas-fired plant technology to make more efficient use of LNG imports.
The new gas-fired plants are expected to come on stream in August and December 2027.
JERA is one of the world’s largest LNG buyers and traders, taking volumes from leading global liquefaction plants.
In its plans for Chita, the older parts of the plants, units 1 to 5 with a combined 3,112 megawatts and using steam and LNG, are being decommissioned over the next few years through fiscal 2026.
The new Units 7 and 8 will then operate alongside the existing Unit 6 gas-fired re-powering plant, giving combined capacity of 2,154MW.
“In order to reduce carbon-dioxide emissions, for new units 7 and 8 the plan adopts the latest high-efficiency combined-cycle power generation system (with gross thermal efficiency of approximately 63 percent),” said JERA.
“In addition, the environmental burden due to smoke and warm wastewater is expected to be lower when the plan has been carried out than for operations at the existing facility,” stated JERA.
JERA has submitted the Environmental Impact Assessment to Japan’s Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI), the Governor of Aichi Prefecture, the Mayor of Chita City and the Mayor of Tokai City, in accordance with the Environmental Impact Assessment Law and Electricity Business Act.
JERA said the documents would be made available for public review at the administrative agencies listed above and public meetings in the relevant areas are scheduled for the 26th March, 2021.
“People with opinions from an environmental conservation standpoint are invited to submit them via post or to drop them in boxes available at the public review locations,” explained JERA.
“JERA will continue to move forward with the environmental impact assessment process, giving due consideration to the opinions of other stakeholders,” it added.