Contributing to the Carbon-neutral Society through the Importation of Biomethane

Mar. 22, 2024

Tokyo Gas Co., Ltd. ("Tokyo Gas", Head Office: Tokyo, Representative Corporate Executive Officer, President and CEO: Shinichi Sasayama) and Mitsui & Co., Ltd. ("Mitsui", Head Office: Tokyo, President and CEO: Kenichi Hori) have reached agreement on a transaction related to biomethane produced overseas. Based on this agreement, approximately 40,000 cubic meters of biomethane (gas equivalent) derived from biogas*1 emitted from landfills in the United States was regarded to be liquefied as a component of LNG. The first delivery of this product to Japan*2 took place*3 on March 19 at Tokyo Gas' Ohgishima LNG Terminal.

Biomethane is defined as biogas refined until the methane concentration is the same as natural gas. The use of organic methane from waste (which would otherwise be released into the atmosphere) as an alternative to fossil fuels is seen as a way to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Under the Japanese system, CO2 emissions from biomass fuels are excluded from the calculations stipulated in the Act on Promotion of Global Warming Countermeasures. The aim of this initiative is to achieve a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by using biomethane produced overseas. Since biomethane is identical with the methane used as the main ingredient of city gas, it can be used in the existing LNG and city gas infrastructure. It will therefore be possible to make progress toward achieving carbon neutrality while minimizing additional social costs.

Under its Group Management Vision, "Compass 2030", Tokyo Gas aims to achieve net zero CO2 emissions by pursuing a combination of strategies in collaboration with various companies in Japan and overseas. Those strategies include the use of renewable energy, synthetic methane (e-methane*4), biomethane, hydrogen, and CCUS.

Mitsui has positioned securing the reliable supply of energy and the achievement of carbon neutrality as priority goals. Its initiatives to provide its customers with decarbonization solutions include investment and participation in biomethane production in the United States*5.

Through this initiative, Tokyo Gas and Mitsui will work together to build an international supply chain for biomethane. They will also pursue various other initiatives toward the achievement of the Japanese government's goal of turning Japan into a carbon-neutral society by 2050.

The Scheme

The Scheme

*1 Produced through the fermentation of organic substances, biogas is a gas mixture consisting of methane, CO2, and other trace gases.
*2 Based on Tokyo Gas and Mitsui research
*3 The product was be shipped form the Cameron LNG facility, in which Mitsui has invested.
*4 This is synthetic methane manufactured from non-fossil energy resources, such as green hydrogen.
*5 Equity Participation in US Biomethane Production & Sales Company Terreva Renewables (Mitsui press release dated August 31, 2023)

Logos of Tokyo Gas and MitsuiLogos of Tokyo Gas and Mitsui
Photo of the LNG tanker during the unloadingPhoto of the LNG tanker during the unloading

Mitsui’s Materiality

“Build brighter futures, everywhere” as our corporate mission, and to gain the trust and expectations of our stakeholders to realize a better tomorrow for earth and for people around the world, we have identified five material issues (“Materiality”) for Mitsui’s sustainable growth. We anticipate this particular project/ business to contribute especially to the realization of “Create an eco-friendly society”

  • Secure sustainable supply of essential products

    Secure sustainable supply of essential products

  • Enhance quality of life

    Enhance quality of life

  • Create an eco-friendly society

    Create an eco-friendly society

  • Develop talent leading to value creation

    Develop talent leading to value creation

  • Build an organization with integrity

    Build an organization with integrity


For inquiries on this matter, please contact

Mitsui & Co., Ltd.
Corporate Communications Division
Telephone: +81-80-5912-0321
Facsimile: +81-3-3285-9819
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