Toyota Motor will begin tests of hydrogen as a power source at production facilities as early as this year, aiming to tame rising carbon dioxide emissions by expanding on its experience as the developer of the first fuel cell car on the market.
Solar and wind power generated in Fukuoka Prefecture will be used to split water molecules, producing hydrogen that will be stored and tapped to fill fuel cells as needed.
Heating equipment and air-conditioning account for roughly 60% of CO2 emissions from the production process. Toyota subsidiary Toyota Motor Kyushu will power air conditioners and forklifts with hydrogen, and aims to use it in the paint-drying process as well. Excess hydrogen can be used in the Mirai fuel cell car.
Toyota will join hands with Fukuoka Prefecture and Kyushu University, which have studied the cost-effectiveness of hydrogen power. The Japanese automaker will take advantage of their know-how, targeting full-fledged adoption of the technology at the Mirai plant in Toyota, Aichi Prefecture, by 2020.
Only 33.2 pct of people in Japan believe that men and women should share an equal burden in child rearing, lower than the proportions in three European countries, a Japanese government report showed Tuesday. (Jiji Press)
A pilgrimage route stretching across Shikoku Island, one of Japan's four main islands, has been recently attracting more foreign visitors with various cultural and religious backgrounds with its unique charms. (Japan Today)
Japan's exports fell sharply in April and manufacturing activity suffered the fastest contraction since Prime Minister Shinzo Abe swept to power in late 2012, providing further evidence that the Abenomics stimulus policy is struggling for traction. (the-japan-news.com)