Visit to Plant

Orix Operates 1.4MW Solar Plant by Renting Factory Roof in Ishikawa (page 2)

2016/11/16 15:47
Shinichi Kato, Nikkei BP CleanTech Institute
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Concerns and expectations unique to power facility companies

Because of seasonal factors such as many cloudy days and snowfall, the Hokuriku region has the impression of being at a disadvantage regarding solar power generation compared with the Pacific Ocean side. Orix, however, runs many rooftop solar power plants at six locations in Ishikawa Prefecture, where Betsukawa is located, and two locations in Toyama Prefecture, based on its projection that they can generate sufficient profit depending on the geographical conditions including sunshine and snow cover.

The solid and large flat roof of Betsukawa's headquarters factory was suited for solar power generation (Fig. 3). The amount of power generation for the first year is expected to total 1,423,488kWh, which is equivalent to the consumption of about 400 general households. The generated power is sold to Hokuriku Electric Power Co at ¥32/kWh (excluding tax).

Fig. 3: Betsukawa's headquarters factory has a solid and large roof. (source: top Orix, Nippon Comsys and Betsukawa, bottom Nikkei BP)

Betsukawa is expecting favorable effects on its business from the mega-solar plant on the roof of its headquarters factory.

Betsukawa manufactures step-up transformers (cubicles), combiner boxes and power grid collector boxes, among others, for the solar power generation market. These are original equipment manufacturing (OEM) products entrusted by external brands, not Betsukawa's own brand. The company also deals with remote monitoring systems.

By acquiring knowledge about construction and the operational state of this rooftop mega-solar plant, Betsukawa expects that it can present more convincing content when holding discussions with customers and other opportunities.

For this purpose, Betsukawa proposed certain requests when constructing and operating the mega-solar plant. Orix willingly consented.