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Report reveals Tokyo electric plan to build solar plant in California

Tokyo Electric Power Co. will build a solar power plant in the state of California through its subsidiary Eurus Energy Holdings Corp., according to a recent report. The company apparently plans to begin operations at the 1000 kilowatt plant by 2010 on a site yet to be selected, the Nikkei business daily reported.


Eurus, already engaged in wind power generation in the United States, wants to take advantage of incentives expected to be provided by the new U.S. government to boost solar power generation nationwide, Nikkei said.

Tokyo Electric is one of four Japanese corporate giants moving into the U.S. renewable energy market with solar and wind power technologies. Petroleum wholesaler Showa Shell Sekiyu KK will start selling solar cells in the United States in June at the earliest after establishing a sales network there, the report said.

The unit of Anglo-Dutch giant Royal Dutch Shell will ship cells from a plant now under construction in Miyazaki prefecture, southern Japan.

Sanyo Electric Co. is set to expand the solar cell production capacity of its Mexican plant, which assembles products for the North American market, by 150 percent to 50,000 kilowatts, the daily said.

In anticipation of growing U.S. demand, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd. will also raise its domestic production capacity for wind turbines by about 30 percent to 1.6 million kilowatts possibly by March 2010, Nikkei said. The 787-billion-dollar U.S. economic stimulus package, which was passed on Tuesday, earmarks 38 billion dollars for investments in the environmental and energy sectors.