ITOCHU Announces Grid-scale Energy Storage Plant, Together with Solar Power Plant PPA and Regional Microgrid Businesses with Kaneka Group in Toyooka, Hyogo Prefecture

June 1, 2023

ITOCHU Corporation (headquartered in Minato-ku, Tokyo; Keita Ishii, President & COO; hereinafter “ITOCHU”) announced today that it is establishing Toyooka Regional Energy Service LLC (headquartered in Toyooka, Hyogo Prefecture; hereinafter “LLC”), a joint venture with Kaneka Solar Marketing Corporation (headquartered in Osaka, Osaka Prefecture; Yoshiyuki Minamizumi, President & Chief Executive Officer; hereinafter “Kaneka Solar Marketing”), with the goal of launching a power service business in fiscal 2023 combining grid-scale energy storage plant, solar power plantPPA*1 and regional microgrid*2 businesses at Toyooka Industrial Park (Toyooka, Hyogo Prefecture). Under the leadership of GK, Kansai Electric Power Co., Inc., iGrid Solutions and tenant companies of Toyooka Industrial Park cooperate to promote the businesses.

  • *1Power purchase agreement
  • *2A system for facilitating local production and local consumption of solar and within a local community using energy storage system and other means to adjust supply and demand

Trading the grid-scale energy storage plant by reusing EV energy storage devices

The business involves using a grid-scale- energy storage system (rated output: 1.9 MW, rating capacity: 6.0 MWh) operated by ITOCHU that reuses the retired energy storage devices of commercial EVs. Lifecycle management including the reuse and recycling of EV energy storage devices is drawing attention as an effective means of securing energy storage system, demand for which is growing significantly. By reusing energy storage devices in this business, ITOCHU contributes to reduction of CO2 emissions during the manufacturing of energy storage devices and the cost for their disposal, to the effective use of scarce resources such as rare metals, and to other efforts.
The business utilizes grid-scale energy storage systems in three power markets including wholesale electric power, balancing market and capacity market, thereby stabilizing the power markets in Japan.

The solar power plant PPA business and the surplus power circulation model efficiently implement the distributed supply of power

We will also roll out a PPA business supplying electric power generated by the solar power generation (total power generation output: 2.2 MW) placed on the roof of the Toyooka Industrial Park to tenants of the complex. ITOCHU Group company iGrid Solutions purchases surplus power within the industrial complex when it exists and supplies it to the surrounding area. In this way, it contributes to the popularization and expansion of renewable energy in a more efficient manner.

Realizing a microgrid-based system that is highly resilient in a disaster

We will build a microgrid which would, in the event that the supply of power is stopped due to an emergency or disaster, connect the grid-scale energy storage system synchronized solar power generation and distribute the power to companies within the industrial park, government-designated evacuation shelters and other destinations to enable electric power self-sufficiency. The power service business establishes a highly resilient system within the industrial complex. This is an advanced effort using the system network in the industrial complex to establish a microgrid. The business received subsidies from the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry for the facilitation of the popularization of renewable energy, etc. that coexists with local communities (one of the projects supporting regional microgrid development) in 2022.

ITOCHU actively engages in the distributed power supply business and combines the on-site and off-site PPA business with the energy storage business for a broad range of applications, from residential use to industrial use and grid-scale plant. Through the above efforts, we will increase our knowledge and expertise in the energy storage system and microgrid businesses, achieve an efficient and stable power supply model for the domestic power markets and contribute to the realization of decarbonized society with distributed power supplies at its core.

Toyooka Regional Energy Service GK

Headquarters Toyooka, Hyogo Prefecture
Representative employee Yoshiyuki Nasuno
Investment ratio Kaneka Solar Marketing Corporation 75%, ITOCHU Corporation 25%