Energy / Climate Change

June 22, 2006


Aomori Prefecture Launches ESCO Business at its Gov't Offices

Keywords: Eco-business / Social Venture Energy Conservation Local government Manufacturing industry 

Aomori Prefecture launched an energy saving (ESCO) business project in April 2006. It is a 15-year project with private funding, targeting the Prefectural government offices. This is the first time that a municipality in Tohoku, the northern part of Honshu, the main island of Japan, has introduced an ESCO business. For the service provider, Nippon Oil Corp., a major Japanese energy company, this is also the first time that an ESCO business has provided service for a local government.

Under the ESCO business project, three high efficiency oil co-generation units having an output of 520 kilowatts and exhaust heat recovery equipment are installed in the main government building. The electricity and heat generated are supplied to three buildings, including the main office tower and the north tower of the prefectural office and the police headquarters, in which energy usage is controlled comprehensively and efficiently. Nippon Oil is engaged in all aspects of the project, from procurement and storage of fuel (Bunker A) to installation, operation and management of energy saving facilities. The annual commission fee paid to the company is about 97 million yen (U.S.$829,000).

By implementing the ESCO business project, the prefecture estimates that carbon dioxide emissions and energy consumption will be reduced by about 7.9 percent and 12.4 percent, respectively, at the governmental offices. Annual utility charges, which currently amount to 180.5 million yen (U.S.$1.5 million), will be also cut to about 79.5 million yen (U.S.$679,000). After the annual commission fee, the prefecture can thus expect cost savings of approximately four million yen (U.S.$34,200).

Aomori Prefecture aims to be a leader in energy saving and plans to further promote efficient energy usage through ESCO businesses. It also expects that the project will have ripple effects on local municipalities and private companies in the prefecture, thus triggering energy saving initiatives.

Posted: 2006/06/22 11:01:27 AM
Japanese version