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Extending Our Collaborative Projects Overseas

Japan-China Energy Conservation and Environmental Business Promotion Model Project

In Yunnan Province, China, we are active in the Model Project for Energy Saving and Utilization of Waste Heat /Pressure through Electrical Systems. This is a collaborative effort between Hitachi, the Energy Conservation Office of the People's Government of Yunnan Province, and the China Center for Business Cooperation and Coordination of the National Development and Reform Commission. The first phase of the project: operations in April 2008 of two sets of Hitachi high-voltage inverters at Kunming Iron & Steel Co. Ltd, one of Yunnan's major steelmakers. The company was able to reduce energy consumption by an average of 26 percent.
In addition, the high-voltage inverter for intake pumps that Hitachi provided for Tianda Chemical Industries Co., Ltd. and the high-voltage inverter for slurry pumps that we provided for Yunnan Three Circles Chemical Co., Ltd. began operating in July and September 2008 respectively. As a result, the Hitachi inverters were able to help these companies achieve immediate initial energy savings of 25.7 percent.

High-pressure inverter system

A monitor showing how much energy is being saved

An energy audit of a model
company in the city of Ningbo

Hitachi's inverter units were used as the base for the inverter systems, while Dongfang Hitachi (Chengdu) Electric Control Equipments Co., Ltd. assembled them. Using our patented energy monitoring technology, these inverter systems allow energy savings to be clearly viewed on monitors. This cutting edge technology is based on energy-saving evaluation and monitoring technologies from Hitachi's motor drive energy conservation service, HDRIVE. Collaborative creation between Hitachi (China) Research & Development Corporation and Dongfang Hitachi (Chengdu) Electric Control Equipments worked together to develop the system.
Following up on the projects in Yunnan Province, Hitachi joined forces with the China Center for Business Cooperation and Coordination and the Ningbo Municipal People's Government to launch a second nationallevel project: the Cooperation Project for Energy-saving and Emission Reduction among SMEs in Ningbo. Thirty SMEs in Ningbo were selected to serve as model companies for this project. Plans are to conduct trial energy audits and to expand eligibility for the project once the results have been confirmed.

Joint Research on Coal Combustion Technology for CO2 Reduction

Oxy-fuel combustion testing
equipment at Aachen University
Photo courtesy of (C)Peter
Winandy, RWTH Aachen

The environmental burden of coal is not low, however it will not go away soon; it is an abundant and low cost source of energy, with infrastructure in place to support its use. Therefore Hitachi realizes the best course of action is to help clean up the process and reduce the negative impact of coal energy in the short to medium term, while in the long term investing in and enabling alternative energy technologies and products that support a sustainable future. Since conventional coal-fired thermal power plants burn coal with air, it is necessary to separate nitrogen and CO2 in the flue gas to recover CO2. Using the oxygen-combustion method, the main components in the flue gas are water and CO2, making it easier to recover CO2. This system can be adapted to coal-fired power plants around the world by adding oxygen supply equipment. Requiring few major modifications, it is believed that practical application is close at hand. In Germany, in particular there are plans to test oxy-fuel combustion technology. Hitachi companies, especially Hitachi Power Europe, are participating in European projects, working on system design.
For basic research, we have exchanged joint statements with the German state of North Rhine-Westphalia on technology for reducing CO2 from coal-fired plants. We are jointly researching with leading universities, as well. Our research project with RWTH Aachen University uses the university's own oxy-fuel combustion test furnace to compile data on combustion, and we are using more sophisticated numerical analysis techniques to improve the reliability of oxy-fuel combustion furnaces.

Ongoing Environmental Cooperation with the Chinese Government

In 2006, Hitachi set up the China Energy Conservation and Environment Commercialization Promotion Project Team. Since then we have cooperated by touring projects in Japan with representatives of China's central and provincial governments, including a film project with the China Environmental Protection Ministry and China Central Television (CCTV).
Due to strong support from the National Development and Reform Commission, we have held three joint Energy Conservation and Environmental Protection Technology Exchange Conferences since 2007, bringing together Japanese and Chinese companies, research institutions, and universities to exchange ideas and create alliances on environmental research. These meetings are making a contribution to China's environmental protection programs. In October 2008, the China-Japan High Level Forum on Energy Saving and Environmental Protection Policies, sponsored by the Development and Research Center of the State Council, was held in Beijing, with Hitachi, Hitachi Research Institute, and Hitachi (China) as the supporting Japanese companies.

The China-Japan High-Level Forum on Energy
Saving and Environmental Protection Policies

This forum had about 200 attendees from both countries' governments and industries, and featured four sessions: "Policies and Regulations for Energy Conservation and Reduction of Emissions," "Energy Conservation and Reduction of Emissions for Companies," "Societal Programs for Energy Conservation and Reduction of Emissions," and "Collaborations between Japan and China on Energy Conservation and Environmental Protection." Each session included lectures and discussions.

Environmental Events in the United States and Singapore

In March 2009, Hitachi held environmental seminars and exhibitions in the United States and Singapore, with government officials and other influential public figures as guests.
A climate change forum titled Meeting Energy Needs, Reducing Environmental Impact, attracting about 400 participants, was held in Washington, D.C. and was jointly organized by the American Association for the Advancement of Science and The Brookings Institution. In addition to a keynote address by U.S. Senator John Kerry, the forum featured panel discussions on climate change policy, research and development of the energy supply, and energy conservation, among other topics.
In Singapore, the Hitachi Eco Conference received the backing of the Singapore government, including the Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources and the Economic Development Board, and attracted about 280 government figures and other guests. Discussions covered energy and water resources, both pressing local issues.

Meeting Energy Needs, Reducing Environmental Impact, a forum held in the United States

The Hitachi Eco Conference held in Singapore

(Published in July 2009)

Environmental Activities (Hitachi Group environmental activities Web site)

Presenting Hitachi's activities aimed at monozukuri in harmony with the environment, such as environmentally conscious products, eco-examples at offices and plants, and employees' activities.