Solar panels to be fitted in all Japan's new homes and buildings by 2030
The Telegraph (UK)
by Danielle Demetriou in Tokyo
May 27, 2011
Japan is expected to announce plans to make it compulsory for all new buildings and homes to be fitted with solar panels by 2030.
Japan plans to halt nuclear power expansion and focus instead on renewable energy sources Photo: Reuters
Naoto Kan, the prime minister, is expected to confirm the "Sunrise Plan" initiative in a statement on the nation's energy policy at the forthcoming Group of Eight Summit opening this week in France.
Mr Kan is expected to tell other leaders that Japan will continue to use nuclear energy following industry-wide improvements on safety standards, according to Japanese media reports.
However, he is also expected to highlight the nation's future efforts to boost the use of renewable energy sources, in particular solar power for which the nation is already among the world's top users.
The exploration of alternative energy sources is timely, following the recent closure of the Hamaoka nuclear power plant due to its sensitive position on a fault line and the ongoing repair work at the tsunami- hit Fukushima plant.
The crisis resulted in Mr Kan recently announcing plans to halt the nation's plans for nuclear expansion and redshift policy focus towards renewable energy sources.
The Sunrise Plan builds on earlier solar plan initiatives, including a target of using solar power energy in 12,000 schools as part of its School New Deal, with the company Kyocera Corporation already installing panels in over 1,200 establishments.
Millions have also been spent encouraging home solar power use on a domestic level, with one initiative involving utilities having to purchase excess solar power from homes and businesses for higher amounts than standard electricity rates.
Other energy sources being investigated by the government include geothermal, wind, biomass and hydropower, as the nation explores ways to increase its energy independence.
Source: The Telegraph (UK)
Japan May Require Solar Panels on All New Buildings by 2030
May 23, 2011
Japan is expected to announce a requirement to have all new buildings include solar panels by 2030 at an upcoming G8 meeting in France on Thursday.
For awhile, people wondered how Japan would react to the Fukushima nuclear disaster (in the long term). Would it cut its plans to build 14 new nuclear reactors and have 50% of its energy supply coming from nuclear by 2050, or would it stay on that route once the steam from this disaster died down?
Well, in the past month or so, Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan has made the answer pretty clear. It is cutting its nuclear expansion plans completely (though, will continue start operation of its existing plants again soon following “confirmations” of safety — an announcement on this is also expected this Thursday). And rather than fill the gap with fossil fuels, it intends to keep on with its carbon-cutting policies by focusing on renewable energy and energy conservation instead.
And it seems, as a recent TIME piece stated, its leadership realizes that solar energy is one of its most promising assets. ”Geothermal, wind, biomass and small-scale hydropower projects all have potential in Japan, but for now, solar looks like the fastest way to add more power to the national grid,” TIME‘s Lucy Birmingham wrote.
At the 2-day G8 Summit in Deauville, France at the end of this week, Prime Minister Naoto Kan is expected to unveil a renewable energy and energy conservation plan that is said to include an unprecedented requirement to have all new buildings come with solar panels by 2030. Stunning. And, of course, well-liked by me, greens, and other clean energy enthusiasts around the world.
I can imagine the U.S. “don’t step on my freedom” people now. But guess what, we have countless safety requirements for new buildings all around the country and if you look at this with a little bit of perspective, that’s what such a requirement is.
From global warming to energy independence and security, we need clean, renewable energy installed fast and we need leading policies like this to make it happen. Of course, I can’t imagine the U.S. ever passing such a policy, but it’s nice to see that another leading democracy is looking to do so.
Kan said a couple weeks ago that Japan needed to “start from scratch” and create an entirely new energy policy. Approximately one month ago, he said that taking the Fukushima nuclear disaster as a lesson, the country would “lead the world in clean energy such as solar and biomass, as we take a step toward resurrection.” This bold new plan to put solar panels on every new building is a good step in that direction.
Source: Clean Technica