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"Ecoste" is an eco-conscious train station promoted by the JR East Japan Railway Group. The first station of its kind is the JR Yotsuya Station located in Tokyo. "Ecoste" refers to an energy-saving train station, which incorporates a wide range of eco technologies, while continuing to provide a comfortable environment. Equipped with Panasonic's HIT solar modules, storage battery system, and LED lighting, the station aims to reduce annual CO2 emissions by 40%. This video report introduces how the "Ecoste" at the JR Yotsuya Station realizes a comfortable, yet ecological environment by incorporating natural light, wind, greenery, and Panasonic's energy solutions.
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March 14, 2012, the JR Yotsuya Station was reborn as a pilot "Ecoste" station. The video report also captures what the opening ceremony held that day was like.
One of the characteristics of this ecological station is that you can come in contact with nature. The station features a green rooftop, pocket park (a roof-top garden), and has incorporated natural light and wind, so that commuters can experience the benefits of nature's blessings.
Many Panasonic energy solutions have been incorporated in the "Ecoste" JR Yotsuya Station. The 3 key points are "create," "store," and "save." The station is equipped with a HIT solar modules that "creates" energy. You can view information about how much power is being generated on eco information bulletin boards installed within the station.
The station is also equipped with a "storage battery system," which "stores" energy created from the sun and provides a stable energy supply when needed. The energy stored is partially used to light advertisement.
And to "save" energy, the fluorescent lights on the platforms and concourses were changed to LED lighting. Moreover, lighting for ads was also switched to LEDs (photo left). Because train stations are very large public facilities, even simply changing the lighting will surely result in significant energy-saving benefits.
I have never really given it much thought before, but when I think about it, there are a lot of lights and air conditioning in a train station. Transforming a station into an eco-conscious one by taking a comprehensive look at the energy consumption of the entire station and incorporating methods to create energy such as solar power generation may prove to be very fruitful. I hope that many train stations in Japan will continue to be reborn as a green stations.