Fukushima University and Taiheiyo Cement (President Shuji Fukuda, Tokyo), the largest in the cement industry, have begun joint research on farmland regeneration in Minamisoma City, Fukushima Prefecture, which was damaged by the Great East Japan Earthquake.Using the biomass technology of Pacific Cement, we will cultivate energy crops in abandoned cultivated land, investigate the power generation efficiency of methane fermentation gas generated from the crops, and produce edible oil and biodiesel fuel by cultivating rape blossoms.
According to Taiheiyo Cement, in a field in Minamisoma City, Taiheiyo Cement cultivates several types of energy crops while receiving guidance on field cultivation management and cultivation from the local Minamisoma Farmland Regeneration Council, and gas from methane fermentation. We have started to investigate the efficiency of occurrence.Of these, the one that is expected as an energy crop is the annual grass sorghum of the Gramineae family.It is a corn-like plant that grows extremely quickly and is used as feed and green manure.On the other hand, at Fukushima University, Hideki Ishii, a specially appointed associate professor at the Utsukushishima Fukushima Future Support Center, is conducting a survey on the current state of land use in Minamisoma City.
In the future, we will evaluate the amount of biomass and energy generated per unit area to select crops that match the climate of Minamisoma City, while estimating the energy production capacity of the city.Furthermore, while maximizing the yield per unit area of oil and fat crops such as rape blossoms, we will also proceed with research on the use of liquid fertilizer for methane fermentation residues.In the future, we plan to implement biogas power generation by methane fermentation using energy crops and consider supplying energy to the local area.
In order to make a profit only by producing energy crops, it is necessary to have a large agricultural land of at least 500 to 1,000 hectares, so it has been considered difficult to promote it in a country where the agricultural land is small.However, Minamisoma City was damaged by the tsunami caused by the Great East Japan Earthquake, and the southern part was incorporated into the caution area due to the accident at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station. It has become.Therefore, we decided to enter into joint research in order to combine the cultivation of energy crops and oil and fat crops for efficient land use.
Taiheiyo Cement says, "While exploring business development according to the region, we would like to contribute to the conservation and utilization promotion of abandoned agricultural land and the revitalization of regional agriculture."