Chiba-Sodegaura power station

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Chiba-Sodegaura power station is a power station in Sodegaura, Chiba, Kantō, Japan with multiple units of varying statuses none of which are currently operating.


Table 1: Project-level location details

Plant name Location Coordinates (WGS 84)
Chiba-Sodegaura power station Sodegaura, Chiba, Kantō, Japan 35.433333, 139.973635 (approximate)

The map below shows the approximate location of the power station.

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Project Details

Table 2: Unit-level details

Unit name Status Fuel(s) Capacity (MW) Technology CHP Start year Retired year
Unit 1 cancelled coal - unknown 1000 ultra-supercritical
Unit 1 pre-permit[1][2][3][4][5] fossil gas - LNG[5] 650[5] combined cycle[4][5] 2029[4][2][3]
Unit 2 cancelled coal - unknown 1000 ultra-supercritical
Unit 2 pre-permit[1][2][3][4][5] fossil gas - LNG[5] 650[5] combined cycle[4][5] 2029[4][2][3]
Unit 3 pre-permit[1][2][3][4][5] fossil gas - LNG[5] 650[5] combined cycle[4][5] 2029[4][2][3]

CHP is an abbreviation for Combined Heat and Power. It is a technology that produces electricity and thermal energy at high efficiencies. Coal units track this information in the Captive Use section when known.

Table 3: Unit-level ownership and operator details

Unit name Owner
Unit 1 Chiba-Sodegaura Energy Co Ltd [100.0%]
Unit 1 Chiba-Sodegaura Energy Co Ltd [100.0%]
Unit 2 Chiba-Sodegaura Energy Co Ltd [100.0%]
Unit 2 Chiba-Sodegaura Energy Co Ltd [100.0%]
Unit 3 Chiba-Sodegaura Energy Co Ltd [100.0%]

Project-level coal details

  • Coal source(s): imported


Coal plans

Kyushu Electric Power, Idemitsu Kosan Company, and Tokyo Gas proposed a 2,000 MW coal-fired power station in Chiba Prefecture.[6][7]

In March 2015, the trio of companies said they would jointly set up a special purpose company for the project, tentatively called Chiba Sodegaura Power Co., to begin the feasibility study. The planned facility would stand near Idemitsu’s base for coal imports. The three firms expected to invest a total of ¥400 billion to ¥500 billion. They aimed to put the power plant into operation in the mid-2020s.[8] In July 2015, the Ministry rejected Chiba-Sodegaura's 2,000 MW project in Chiba.[9]

In July 2016 it was reported that the sponsors were still seeking EIA approval.[10]

Public Opposition

In June 2015 Chiba was one of three planned plants from which Environment Minister Yoshio Mochizuki withheld approval "at this point," saying his ministry cannot approve their construction unless the power industry comes up with concrete plans to reduce carbon dioxide emissions.[11] The other two plants were the Taketoyo plant in Aichi Prefecture, and the Ube plant in Yamaguchi Prefecture.[11] According to a September 2015 editorial in The Japan Times: "Japan’s pledge on its climate change efforts called for reducing its greenhouse gas emissions in 2030 by 26 percent from its 2013 levels. But the Environment Ministry estimated that, if all of the coal-fired plants being planned are built, and then would be in operation for decades to come, Japan would likely miss its emissions reduction target by 60 million tons in 2030.[11]

On September 7, 2017, about 50 protestors voiced their oppositions to the construction of the Chiba Sodegaura coal plant. Protestors did not want the smog from the coal plant to pollute the air and harm the nearby residents. The protestors started protesting at Idemitsu, before travelling to the Tokyo Gas LNG terminal, where students, mothers, and young children joined the protestors in action.[12]

On March 19, 2018, a seminar about “What will happen to air pollution due to the construction of the Chiba power plant in Tokyo Bay” was held at the Chiba Prefectural Education Center. Lauri Myllyvirta from the Greenpeace International Coal and Air Pollution Sector was invited to discuss her research against the construction of the Chiba plant.[13]

On November 5, 2018, a map showing the health risks of the Chiba power plant and other Tokyo Bay coal plants was released to the public to build awareness and opposition against the construction of the plants. The map was created by the Tokyo Bay Association, a group of citizens against coal plants in Tokyo Bay, such as the Chiba plant.[14]

On February 17, 2019, the Tokyo Bay Association held a gathering against the construction of the Chiba coal plant. The gathering discussed how the construction of the plant would affect citizens and the natural environment.[15]

Project scrapped

In April 2018, Tokyo Gas announced the company would delay the project until at least March 2020 due to opposition by residents and concerns about climate change expressed by the Kiko Network and Friends of the Earth Japan.[16]

In July 2018, the Kiko Network flagged that the plant was undergoing its first EIA screening and was scheduled for completion in 2025-2026.[17][18]

In August 2018, Nikkei Asian Review reported Chiba's project sponsors were considering using liquefied natural gas at the plant instead, balancing concerns over coal's heavier greenhouse gas emissions against the higher long-term costs of gas.[19]

In January 2019, Tokyo Gas’s President and CEO, Takashi Uchida, said the company would decide by the end of March whether it intended to push ahead with the proposed Chiba coal plant. Uchida said if it and its joint venture partners Kyushu Electric Power and Idemitsu Kosan decided against coal, they would propose a LNG-fuelled plant instead.[20]

Shortly after this, the company confirmed that it had scrapped the proposed project and would instead consider building an LNG-fired plant at the site.[21]

In a media release on the decision to cancel the project, Tokyo Gas stated that "the project sponsors have concluded that the project cannot yield initially expected investment returns and thus agreed to cancel further feasibility studies of a coal-fired thermal power."[22]

The company stated that two of the three consortium partners in the original coal-fired project - Kyuden and Tokyo Gas - "have decided to continue a feasibility study of a LNG-fired thermal powerplant, aiming to construct a combined-cycle power stationat the samelocationin Sodegaura City, Chiba Prefecture."[22] Idemitsu, which owned the site of the proposed power plant, was part of the consortium investing the coal plant but was not involved in the joint venture for the LNG plant.

Gas plans

In September 2019, Japan’s Tokyo Gas and Kyushu Electric Power proposed a plan to build a gas-fired power station at Sodegaura in Chiba, near Tokyo. As noted above, the two companies, along with Idemitsu Kosan Co. Ltd., previously planned to build a 2,000 MW coal-fired power station at the same site, but cancelled this plan in January 2019 saying it was not economically feasible.[23][24]

Chiba-Sodegaura Energy Co. Ltd.—the company formed by Tokyo Gas and Kyushu Electric in their joint venture—plans to make a final investment decision on the power station between 2020 and 2024, with an aim to start operation in the later half of the 2020s.[23]

Articles and Resources


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Archived from the original on 15 June 2022. {{cite web}}: Missing or empty |title= (help)
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 Archived from the original on 25 September 2023. {{cite web}}: Missing or empty |title= (help)
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 {{cite web}}: Missing or empty |title= (help)
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.5 4.6 4.7 4.8 (PDF) Archived from the original (PDF) on 12 January 2024. {{cite web}}: Missing or empty |title= (help)
  5. 5.00 5.01 5.02 5.03 5.04 5.05 5.06 5.07 5.08 5.09 5.10 5.11 (PDF) Archived from the original (PDF) on 15 June 2022. {{cite web}}: Missing or empty |title= (help)
  6. “Operation and Construction Plans of Coal-Fired Thermal Plants in Japan,” Kiko Network, 17 October 2014
  7. "Construction plans for Japan's coal power stations," Reuters, Dec 11, 2014
  8. "Kyushu Electric, Tokyo Gas, Idemitsu eye Chiba power plant," The Japan News, Mar 28, 2015
  9. "Chubu Electric's 1GW Taketoyo coal project questioned," Asian Power, Aug 1, 2017
  10. "「(仮称)千葉袖ケ浦火力発電所1,2号機建設計画 環境影響評価方法書」に対する 経済産業大臣通知の受領について," 株式会社 千葉袖ケ浦エナジー, July 4, 2016
  11. 11.0 11.1 11.2 Misplaced emphasis on coal, The Japan Times, September 27, 2015.
  12. "Appeal against construction opposite in front of Idemitsu Coal Research Institute," Tokyo Bay, translated by Google, 8 Sep. 2017
  13. "Chiba Seminar," Tokyo Bay, translated by Google, 12 Mar. 2018
  14. "We have created a fllyer for the Tokyo Bay Coal Fired Power Plant Planning Map!" Tokyo Bay, translated by Google, 5 Nov. 2018
  15. "Sodeguara Seminar," Tokyo Bay, translated by Google, 7 Jan. 2019
  16. "石炭火力「慎重に」 東ガス新社長が明言," Nikkei, 2018/4/3
  17. Chiba Sodeguara No.1, Kiko Network, accessed July 2018
  18. Chiba Sodeguara No.2, Kiko Network, accessed July 2018
  19. "Tokyo-area coal plant developers consider switch to LNG," Nikkei Asian Review, August 10, 2018
  20. Yuka Obayashi, "Tokyo Gas CEO says to step up overseas LNG investment", Reuters, January 30, 2019.
  21. "Japan's Idemitsu, Kyushu Elec, Tokyo Gas scrap coal-fired power plant plan", Reuters, January 31, 2019.
  22. 22.0 22.1 "Changes in the Thermal Power Plant Project in Sodegaura City, Chiba Prefecture", Media Release, January 31, 2019.
  23. 23.0 23.1 "Tokyo Gas, Kyushu Elec form JV to consider building gas-fired power plant" Reuters, Sept. 3, 2019.
  24. Chiba Sodegaura No.1 (tentative)/Chiba Sodegaura Energy/Sodegaura city, Chiba pref. Japan Coal Plant Tracker, accessed November 2019.

Additional data

To access additional data, including interactive maps of the power stations, downloadable datases, and summary data, please visit the Global Coal Plant Tracker and the Global Oil and Gas Plant Tracker on the Global Energy Monitor website.