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Cancellation of Sodegaura, One of Japan’s largest coal-fired power plants

On January 31, 2019, Tokyo Gas Co., Kyushu Electric Power Co., and Idemitsu Kosan Co. jointly announced their decision to abandon to build a massive coal-fired power plant  (2 units of 1 MW each) in Sodegaura City, Chiba Prefecture.

With this decision, following to the recent cancellation of the Soga Coal-Fired Power Plant announced on December 27, 2018, all three new power plants that were being planned in Chiba Prefecture have now been cancelled (Ichihara City, Chiba City, Sodegaura City).

All three project sponsors stated in press releases that they “have concluded that the project cannot yield initially expected investment returns.” However, considering a statement last summer by the president of Tokyo Gas that the company would take community input into account, we believe that tenacious campaigns organized by citizens, including community groups and NGOs, were also a significant factor. Numerous groups, including the group for studying coal power plant in Sodegaura (Anti-Coal Sodegaura) and the group in Tokyo Bay (Anti-Coal Tokyo Bay), joined in persistent advocacy calling on the project sponsors to cancel their plans.

For the result, 11 of the 50 units at coal-fired power plants that were newly planned since 2012 have been either cancelled or seen a change in planned fuel (of the 50 units, 10 are already operating and 29 are at the planning or construction stage as of January 31, 2019).

To see the campaigns and contestations, please read the press release of following organizations.

Kiko Network Press Release
One of Japan’s largest coal-fired power plants cancelled 12 million tons of annual CO2 emissions avoided (Link)

The group for studying coal power plant in Tokyo Bay (Anti-Coal Tokyo Bay)
市原、千葉(蘇我)に続き、袖ケ浦の石炭火力計画中止を歓迎! ~東京湾岸の石炭火力は、残りJERAの横須賀の計画のみに(リンク Japanese only)

Reference

Kyushu Electric Power Co. (Link)
Tokyo Gas (Link)
Idemitsu Kosan Co. (Link)