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Marubeni to launch microhydro project in Fukushima Prefecture

Marubeni has commenced construction of a microhydro plant of 175 kW in Shimogo Town, Minami Aizu County, Fukushima. The project is being jointly developed with Mibugawa.
The plant will start commercial operation from April 2015 and be handled by Mibugawa.

The Reconstruction Design Council in Response to the Great East Japan Earthquake drafted a report to the Japanese Prime Minister entitled "Towards Reconstruction 'Hope beyond the Disaster'" and recommended Fukushima Prefecture to be the frontier land of renewable energy. This project, which utilizes private and public land and the water of the Osawa River which runs through Shimogo Town to generate electricity, was adopted as a "Subsidized Project for Renewable Energy Promotion in Fukushima Prefecture."

This is the first small hydro power project to be constructed in Minami Aizu County after the Great East Japan Earthquake. The power plant capacity is 175 kW and is expected to produce approximately 1 million kWh per annum, corresponding to the annual electricity consumption of 300 ordinary houses. The generated power will be sold for over 20 years under Japan's feed-in-tariff scheme.

Mibugawa will conduct stable operation of this plant by utilizing its operation know-how of hydro power plants and positive relationship with Shimogo Town. Shimogo Town drew up a local energy vision and has been investigating the possibility for the installation of renewable energy facilities. Mibugawa will make a contribution to Shimogo Town through the installation of small hydro power plants.

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