The City of Lancaster announced that its City Hall microgrid will be named the “Pacific Energy Center” (PAEC) to honour outgoing Consul General Akira Muto of Japan.
The microgrid is being developed in partnership with Yamaguchi, Japan-based Choshu Industries Corp. of America, leveraging solar, battery, and hydrogen solutions to provide reliable green energy to City Hall. The PAEC forms part of a larger hydrogen ecosystem being developed by the City.
“Pacific” represents the connection between Namie, Japan and Lancaster, California, through the Pacific Ocean. In the logo, the hydrogen atom at the end of the pacific is reflective of the hydrogen connection across the pacific between two unlikely partners and their commitment to creating a more sustainable future.
Mr Muto was an essential partner to the City of Lancaster’s work with the Japanese business community and was instrumental in developing the City’s Green Energy Microgrid (GEM) system at Lancaster City Hall with Choshu Industries. The partnership will integrate Choshu’s “SHiPS,” a containerized hydrogen production and refuelling station system, and “MizTomo,” a stationary fuel cell power system.
Parris is a fifth-term Republican mayor who transformed Lancaster into a renewable energy leader over the past decade by attracting more than $2 billion of investment in cutting-edge green companies and technologies. Investors include BYD, which manufactures electric buses; Heliogen, which generates hydrogen from concentrated solar energy; SGH2, which gasifies wastepaper into hydrogen; and Hitachi Zosen Inova (HZI), which converts organic waste into renewable natural gas and hydrogen. The City also started its own utility company, Lancaster Energy, allowing residents to choose local renewable energy at lower prices.
Rex Parris, Mayor of the City of Lancaster, said, “Our green energy projects and partnerships, especially for hydrogen, would not have been possible without his support and assistance in building relationships between Lancaster and various ministries and agencies of the Government of Japan.”
Lex Heslin, CEO of Enso Infrastructure and Senior Project Developer at Hitachi Zosen Inova, said, “He subsequently facilitated the establishment of Lancaster’s Smart Sister City relationship with Namie Town in Fukushima – the first two municipalities in the world to commit to develop local hydrogen production, distribution, and usage ecosystems.”