The Ichihara Yawatafuto biomass power plant is a 75MW wood biomass facility planned to be built in the city of Ichihara-shi in the Chiba Prefecture of Japan.
Prominet Power, a subsidiary of Tokyo Gas, became the owner of the proposed facility after acquiring Ichihara Yawatafuto Biomass Power Godo Kaisha (GK) from Singapore-based investment fund Equis Group in September 2020.
The transaction, which also involved the acquisition of the 51.5MW Fushiki Manyofuto biomass power plant in Toyama Prefecture, was part of Tokyo Gas’ mission to increase its renewable power generation capacity worldwide to 5GW by 2030.
The Ichihara Yawatafuto power plant will be operated by Tokyo Gas Engineering Solutions, a subsidiary of Tokyo Gas.
Construction activities at the proposed site are expected to start in the fourth quarter of 2020 and continue through 2023. The plant is expected to commence commercial operations in 2024.
Location and site details
The Ichihara Yawatafuto biomass power plant site is located at 2-10 Yawata Kaigandori, Ichihara city, Chiba prefecture, Japan.
Ichihara Yawatafuto biomass power plant details
The Ichihara Yawatafuto biomass power plant will use wood pellets, palm kernel shells (PKS), and demolition waste as primary fuels for generating electricity.
The power generation will be based on a reheat system to achieve high power generation efficiency.
In the reheating process, the steam will be expanded in the high-pressure steam turbine to an intermediate pressure and then sent back to the boiler, where it will be reheated at constant pressure. The reheated steam will be resent to the low-pressure steam turbine for further expansion at condenser pressure.
Power purchase agreements
Electricity generated from the Ichihara Yawatafuto biomass power plant will be sold under the Japanese feed-in-tariff (FIT) of £0.17 ($0.23) per kWh.
Hokuriku Electric Power Company and TEPCO Power Grid have executed power purchase agreements to purchase electricity generated by the plant for a period of 20 years.
Toyo Engineering was awarded the contract for the construction of the Ichihara Yawatafuto biomass facility in September 2020. The contractual scope includes the engineering, procurement, and construction (EPC) and commissioning services for the power plant on a full turn-key basis.
Siemens Energy was sub-contracted by Toyo Engineering to supply a steam turbine of 75MW power output, generator, and turbine controls equipment for the power plant.
Biomass power generation in Japan
Japan introduced a feed-in-tariff (FIT) policy for renewable energy and incentivised renewable energy development by creating a cycle of investment, innovation, and cost reductions in 2012. Under the FIT scheme, the Japanese government has also set out 20 years purchase agreements with transmission operators.
The scheme was implemented by setting prices and contract durations for the purchase of electric utilities and merchants purchase renewable-generated electricity.
Japan is currently undergoing a biomass-to-energy boom in the backdrop of the closure of nuclear power plants after the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster.
Under the FIT, Japan’s biomass power capacity reached approximately 2,300MW by 2018.