Japan PPA market now includes solar carports


Sumitomo and utility Shikoku Electric Power have secured a corporate PPA for a series of solar carports the two companies will deploy at 12 facilities owned by Japanese retailer Aeon Mall.

The projects will range in size from 140 kW to 2.4 MW and are located in Tokyo, Chiba, Yamanashi, Gifu, Shiga, Kyoto, Osaka, Hyogo, Nara, and Wakayama. The project developer is Sun Trinity, a joint venture between Sumitomo and Shikoku Electric.

The companies said that solar carports tend to be more expensive than rooftop installations, but they expect costs to be competitive due to the high volume. They provided few details about the PV technology, but said the carports are designed to maximize car space, using bifacial modules with minimal load-bearing columns.

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The partners said they plan to eventually install solar carports at more than 50 stores across Japan by 2025.

Aeon Mall said its long-term aim is to secure more locally produced, locally consumed renewable energy via PPAs covering wind, hydrogen, and battery energy storage systems.

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