Japanese thermal power producer Jera and refiner Idemitsu have agreed to jointly consider developing a hydrogen supply chain in central Japan’ Ise bay area, where various industries are concentrated and demand for the clean fuel is expected to increase with a drive towards decarbonisation.
Jera and Idemitsu will mainly study setting up bases to receive, stock, process and dispatch hydrogen using their existing facilities in the region. The companies are also planning to carry out a technological and economic analysis of transportation methods for hydrogen, as well as discussing how to develop a hydrogen supply network in the Ise bay area.
Jera owns six gas-fired power plants in the Ise bay area — the 1,708MW Chita, 1,708MW Chita-Daini, 3,058MW Shin-Nagoya, 2,376MW Nishi-Nagoya, 4,802MW Kawagoe and 585MW Yokkaichi plants, along with LNG import terminals. The company may burn hydrogen at some of these gas-fired plants.
Idemitsu operates the 160,000 b/d Aichi refinery on its own and the 255,000 b/d Yokkaichi refinery through its affiliate Showa Yokkaichi Oil. Either, or both, of these refineries may become a base for hydrogen in the future, like the potential use of its Yamaguchi refinery in western Japan as a base for clean fuels.
Idemitsu on 14 June revealed its plan to halt refining operations at the 120,000 b/d Yamaguchi around March 2024, ahead of ending a supply contract with plant operator and subsidiary Seibu Oil on 31 March 2024. The companies are considering using Yamaguchi as a terminal for decarbonisation fuels such as hydrogen and ammonia.