While Nissan has signed Memorandums of Understanding (MOU) with various countries, municipalities, automakers and cities across the globe, its latest agreement with Kagoshima Prefecture in Japan strikes us as one of the most unusual to date. Under terms of the MOU, Nissan and Kagoshima will jointly embark on a project to create a so-called CO2-free island off the coast of Japan's southern tip.
The project, appropriately called "Development of a CO2-Free Island," will focus on promoting the widespread adoption of electric vehicles and utilizing renewable energy on the Japanese island of Yakushima. Yakushima is notable for its remoteness, amazing scenery, thousands-of-years-old trees and generating a lot of electricity from hydropower. Through the CO2-free island project in Yakushima, Nissan hopes to establish a working model that will allow the company to deploy its upcoming electric vehicles on additional islands in the future. Follow the jump for more info on the "Development of a CO2-Free Island Project."
[Source: Nissan | Image: JoshBerglund19 – C.C. License 2.0]
Nissan Signs Zero-Emission Partnership With Kagoshima Prefecture to Promote "Development of a CO2-Free Island" in Yakushima
YOKOHAMA, Japan (August 6, 2010) - Nissan Motor Co., Ltd. and Kagoshima Prefecture today signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to jointly embark on the "Development of a CO2-Free Island" project to create an advanced low-carbon society on Yakushima Island. Japan's first World Heritage Site, Yakushima Island is home to some of the country's oldest trees - the oldest of which may be more than 7,000 years old - and has an abundant source of renewable energy: hydropower.
The partnership will primarily focus on promoting the widespread adoption of electric vehicles (EVs) on the island and creating an environment where people can safely drive EVs and utilize renewable energy.
Already, Kagoshima Prefecture has offered a purchase incentive for EVs under the "Support Program for EV Promotion in Yakushima Island." The prefecture is providing subsidies for installation of chargers, while Nissan has started a project to analyze how to install chargers optimally using drive data analysis technology.
The widely varied topography of Yakushima Island will offer an ideal setting to conduct studies on further refining the navigation system for EVs to more precisely factor in road gradient. A study on utilization of electricity generated by EVs also will be conducted.
Nissan and Kagoshima Prefecture believe the Development of a CO2-Free Island project will be a study in best practices for similar countries and regions throughout the world. They hope to establish a working model for the wide-spread adoption of EVs on remote islands.
Nissan Zero Emission Website