Niigata noodles around with new-build power plant

Teikoku Oil Co is considering plans to build a US$42.5 million gas-fired thermal power plant in the Niigata Prefecture. This is seen as a preparatory move for an expected further deregulation of Japan's wholesale power market.

The construction of the 55,000-kilowatt power unit - located at Teikoku's natural gas production plant site in Koshijihara - is expected to be complete by October 2005. All electricity generated by the plant will be distributed to Nippon Steel Corp, Japan's leading steel maker and electricity wholesaler.

Teikoku Oil produces the needed natural gas and condensate at its inland Minami-Nagaoka gas field and expects to consume about 37 million cubic metres a year of natural gas or 42,000 kiloliters a year of condensate to generate power for the new facility.