Japan's Kansai Elec, Marubeni scrap plan for coal-fired power plant

TOKYO, April 27 (Reuters) - Japan’s Kansai Electric Power Inc and trading firm Marubeni Corp have scrapped a plan to build a 1.3 gigawatt (GW) coal-fired power plant, as project feasibility has become tough to assess, the utility said on Tuesday.

A global trend towards decarbonisation is gathering pace, with Japan’s biggest coal-fired power generator, Electric Power Development Co Ltd (J-Power), giving up a plan this month to build a 1.2-GW coal-fired power plant.

“The decision reflected the Japanese government’s policy to step up decarbonisation and banks’ move to stop financing coal power projects,” a spokesman for Kansai Electric said.

He added that the partners would consider building a biomass power plant at the site in the northern region of Akita instead.

In March, Chugoku Electric Power Co Inc and JFE Steel, a unit of JFE Holdings Inc, also cancelled a plan to build a thermal power station.

A worldwide shift away from coal is accelerating in the battle on global warming, and Japan nearly doubled its 2030 target for a cut in carbon emissions last week as U.S. President Joe Biden hosted a climate summit.

On Monday, Japan’s biggest lender, Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc, said it would stop financing upgrades of coal-fired power plants, as pressure grows for the country’s lenders to cut funding for coal power. (Reporting by Yuka Obayashi; Editing by Clarence Fernandez)