Solar Plant Exploits City Policy on Landfill
Integrated foundation resolves construction restrictions
Fig. 2: Nine mega-solar power plants and four wind power plants are integrated in Hibikinada area. Output ranges from 1MW to 20MW at the solar power plants and from 2MW to 15MW at the wind power plants. (source: Hibikinada Development).
Fig. 3: Flying near the windmill is an Eastern march harrier, which is designated an endangered species. A waste disposal facility turns into an untouched natural environment, where rare species live. (source: Nikkei BP)
Fig. 5: Concrete pieces that combine the foundations and the mounting system are put in place. As concrete foundations could not be built on the ground, the resistance required to set up solar panels was secured by the weight. (source: Nikkei BP)
"Hibiki Solar Power" (Fig. 1), a mega (large-scale) solar power plant with an output of 1.990MW, was constructed by Kitakyushu City's third-sector organization Hibikinada Development Co Ltd. The construction site is reclaimed land in which industrial waste landfilling had been completed.
The Hibikinada area is a landfill site facing the Sea of Japan, where plants, operations and waste disposal facilities of Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal Corp, Asahi Glass Co Ltd, Nippon Coke & Engineering Co Ltd and Electric Power Development Co Ltd, as well as Kitakyushu Eco Town's verification test facility, are located. Making the most of the vast land available, the area has recently been growing into a complex of mega-solar power plants and wind power plants (Fig. 2).
As for the waste disposal facilities in such areas, there are restrictions with respect to building construction and people's entry into the facilities during the purification period after the landfill is completed. The construction of the mega-solar plant is one of the methods to make efficient use of it.
Meanwhile, diverse environments such as wetland, freshwater ponds and grassland have been created because of the rough terrain formed by the wind and rain. And some places, where people have almost never entered, are now inhabited by various creatures including birds, animals and insects.
"Hibikinada Biotope" run by Kitakyushu City is one such place. More than 200 kinds of birds and nearly 300 kinds of plants have been confirmed, including rare species such as Circus spilonotus (Eastern march harrier), which the Ministry of the Environment has designated an endangered species (Fig. 3).
This mega-solar power plant faces Hibikinada Biotope across the sea. It has only been about three years since the completion of the landfill. When it was constructed, the fill surface had merely been bulldozed.
Construction in compliance with Kitakyushu City's plans
Hibikinada Development is a company established with the aim of securing industrial waste disposal facilities, etc for businesses based in Hibikinada and Kitakyushu City. And it has run a waste disposal facility in three blocks in the Hibikinada-Nishi area.
Hibikinada Development is financed by Kitakyushu City, Fukuoka Prefecture, Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal, Asahi Glass, Mitsubishi Chemical Corp, Electric Power Development, Nippon Coke & Engineering, Idemitsu Kosan Co Ltd, Nissan Motor Co Ltd, Krosaki Harima Corp, Mizuho Bank Ltd and the Bank of Fukuoka.
In Hibikinada Development's waste disposal facility, the shareholder companies' waste and steel materials, in particular, are buried. The facility's Block No. 1 (approx 536,000m2), where landfill was completed first, is now being sold in lots for uses such as logistics centers. The on-roof-type 2MW output mega-solar power plant (See related article) at Hibiki International Logistics Center, which we introduced in the "Visit to Plant" series, is located in Block No. 1 of this waste disposal facility.
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