Tokyo Elec­tric Unit plans 50% ex­pan­sion in wind, so­lar ca­pac­ity

The Pak Banker - - Company& -

TOKYO: Eu­rus En­ergy Hold­ings Corp., a unit of Tokyo Elec­tric Power Co., may in­vest as much as 100 bil­lion yen ($1.2 bil­lion) to ex­pand wind and so­lar en­ergy gen­er­a­tion by more than half and meet ris­ing de­mand for cleaner power.

Ja­pan's biggest wind farm op­er­a­tor plans to in­crease out­put from re­new­able en­ergy projects by 1,000 megawatts from 1,950 megawatts in the U.S., Asia and Europe in five years, Tet­suro Na­gata, pres­i­dent and chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer, said in an in­ter­view in Tokyo yes­ter­day.

"In the com­ing few years, the U.S. will be the most at­trac­tive mar­ket" af­ter Pres­i­dent Barack Obama called for more in­vest­ments in re­new­able en­ergy, Na­gata said. The com­pany may in­vest in wind farms in states in­clud­ing Texas, Ore­gon, Washington, Ok­la­homa and Colorado that of­ten ex­pe­ri­ence strong winds, he said. Tokyo Elec­tric plans to in­vest as much as 3.5 tril­lion yen in low-car­bon en­ergy, in­clud­ing wind, so­lar and nu­clear gen­er­a­tion, by 2020. Eu­rus En­ergy, which is 60 per­cent owned by Asia's biggest util­ity, will lead Tokyo Elec­tric's devel­op­ment of wind and so­lar power projects.

New projects will be fi­nanced with 25 bil­lion yen that Eu­rus En­ergy raised in Fe­bru­ary from Tepco and its other share­holder, Toy­ota Tsusho Corp., an af­fil­i­ate of Toy­ota Mo­tor Corp., Na­gata said. The com­pany will seek project fi­nance for the re­main­der, he said.

"We may be able to bor­row three to four times" the eq­uity amount, depend­ing on bank ap­provals, Na­gata said.

The com­pany, which is named af­ter Eu­rus, the Greek god of the east wind, has 587 megawatts of ca­pac­ity in the U.S., 726 megawatts in Europe and 636 megawatts in Asia, Na­gata said. So­lar power will ac­count for about 10 per­cent of the in­crease in out­put while the rest will be gen­er­ated from wind power, Na­gata said.

Eu­rus En­ergy and NRG So­lar, a unit of NRG En­ergy Inc., said in Septem­ber they will op­er­ate a 45-megawatt so­lar power project in Cal­i­for­nia. The project, which Eu­rus says will cost $220 mil­lion, is ex­pected to start sup­ply­ing power in June 2011. Pa­cific Gas & Elec­tric Co. signed a 20-year con­tract to buy power from the devel­op­ment. -Bloomberg

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