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LEAF Adds to Power Grid-lock Solutions

Osaka – July 3 – Another summer of tight energy supplies is leading to plans for power-saving measures in western Japan, and the Nissan LEAF has become part of the solution.

Some 250 Nissan LEAFs will be available free for public and private use in Osaka – with a population of 8.8 million, supplying power to homes during the day and charging from the grid at night.

Osaka’s economic activity is second only to Tokyo and it slowed last year due to changed work schedules and emergency conservation measures taken across Japan in the wake of the March disasters that disrupted national power supply.

With renewed fears of brownouts this summer, the LEAF can also be used as a backup power source, and the Osaka city and prefectural offices are taking 50 units.

“This year’s demand for energy in Japan, and particularly in the western region of Kansai, is a very difficult situation,” said Seiji Nakamura, general manager at the Osaka prefectural government office.

“The central government has created simulations for national energy demand, and as a result in Kansai we’ve been told we need to reduce consumption by at least a 15% to cope with the situation. In this, the Osaka prefectural and city governments are asking for citizens’ cooperation and working together to achieve this cut target.”

Nissan Chief Operating Officer Toshiyuki Shiga met Tuesday with Osaka governmental officials about the “LEAF-to-Home” power plan.

Shiga said that after last year’s energy pinch that conservation has become a national issue.

“This year across the country, we are suffering a quite serious power shortage, especially this Kansai area,” said COO Shiga.

“So, Nissan has developed the ‘LEAF to Home’ – we can store electricity in the nighttime, and then from the car, we use it in the daytime, especially during peak demand time.”

The involvement of Mayor Toru Hashimoto, the leader of the One Osaka political party, is seen as a potential catalyst for further LEAF utilization.

Osaka is a first step for Nissan, which intends to offer “LEAF-to-Home” in other locations in Japan if further demand emerges.

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