Eco-business / Social Venture

July 2, 2009


Japanese Company Opens Eco-Friendly Day Care Center

Keywords: Eco-business / Social Venture Non-manufacturing industry 

JP Holdings, Inc., a major Japanese supplier of childcare services, opened an eco-friendly day care center in Noda City, Chiba Prefecture, on April 1, 2009. The Kids Plaza Asuku Nanakoudai Day Care Center has an eco-friendly play area for kids to interact with nature which includes a well, a hill, a small creek, a pond and a wind turbine. The day care center also features multiage childcare and food education provided to children through their self-subsistence activities.

Aiming to encourage children to understand the importance of healthy eating and appreciation of food, the day care center has rented a neighboring vacant farmland and lets children participate in growing vegetables and fruits, which are cooked at the day care center and served on the lunch menu. JP Holdings has introduced this food education into this new day care center, based on their experiences that children in its other day care centers became able to eat whatever vegetables they had grown in garden planters.

The day care center has a 100% wooden building with an air conditioning system that utilizes geothermal energy, which is expected to reduce carbon dioxide emissions from the building by 35 to 40 percent compared with conventional air conditioners. In this eco-friendly system, heat is extracted from 100 meters underground by a geothermal heat exchanger to produce hot or cool water in a heat pump. The temperature in the building remains approximately 18 degrees Celsius even during midwinter as the outside air taken by the pump is properly controlled before coming indoors.

In addition, the overall design of the day care center allows cool breezes from neighboring hills to pass through the building in the summer. With these creative designs, JP Holdings aims to create a traditional human living environment without depending on air conditioners.

Posted: 2009/07/02 06:00:15 AM