A large rooftop solar panel array and a gas cogeneration system is being fitted at Sumitomo Rubber Thailand’s tire manufacturing and sales facility in the Rayong Province to enable the site to run on sustainable power. The facility will also receive green electric power, supplied by Kansai Energy Solutions Thailand (KES-T).
Supported by the Japanese Ministry of the Environment as part of the 2022 Financing Program for Joint Crediting Mechanism Model Projects, K-EST will install the rooftop solar panel array consisting of approximately 40,000 panels, equating to an estimated output of 22MW. The company will also be responsible for fitting the gas cogeneration system, which is made up of two 6.6MW boilers.
The entirety of electric power and steam generated by the two systems will be used to supply the manufacturing facility, replacing the currently used energy sources. Upon completion Sumitomo estimates the factory’s total yearly CO2 emissions will be reduced by 38,000 tons.
In addition to installing new equipment, Sumitomo Rubber Thailand also signed an agreement with Korea Electric Power Corporation (KEPCO) for the provision of renewable energy certificates. Furthermore, the factory will transition to carbon-free electric energy thanks to International Renewable Energy Certificates (I-REC) procured and provided by KEPCO.
As the I-REC represents the renewable energy attributes of biomass electric power – generated by incinerating excess branches, trunks and other leftovers from rubber trees that are harvested for lumber in Thailand – the project will also contribute to the company’s sustainable natural rubber efforts.