Prime Minister of Japan, Naoto Kan, stressed the need, following the devastating earthquake and tsunami of March 11, to review the energy policy of Japan, a country that makes little use of renewable energies and relies heavily on nuclear energy. “As solar wind and our country is lagging behind, so let’s lead the way in this regard as other Western countries are doing,” said Kan.
“Regarding nuclear power, we will study ways to get it even more secure,” said the prime minister, referring to the crisis still open in the Fukushima nuclear power as a result of the disaster. Khan also spoke of promoting a system that encourages energy conservation, and announced it would return his salary as prime minister until the nuclear crisis is resolved.
Chubu Electric Power recently agreed to freeze the Hamaoka nuclear power plant for safety, which may complicate the power supply in Japan. Kan reiterated that the responsibility for the accident lies with the operator of the nuclear plant in Fukushima, Tokyo Electric Power (TEPCO), and said he believes the creation of an independent commission of inquiry to analyze the causes of the accident.
“I will take the data from this accident to the international community in order to contribute to a nuclear energy supply more secure now,” said Kan. He admitted last week that his government’s response to the earthquake of 11 March was “inadequate in multiple respects” and urged his ministers to share more information to solve the crisis.
Eurus Energy Holdings Corp., a subsidiary of Tokyo Electric Power Co., has completed a 30 MW wind park in southern Japan. The new wind farm on the Osumi Peninsula in Kagoshima Prefecture, with 15 wind turbines manufactured by Japan Steel Works Ltd., began operations on 18 March, a month after the accident at the Fukushima nuclear plant.
The announcement comes as TEPCO is to control the nuclear power plant in Fukushima after five weeks of release of radioactivity after an earthquake and tsunami, and amid concerns over power cuts.
This latter wind farm wind power rises more than 2 gigawatts, according to Mitsue Usami, spokesman for the largest wind developer in Japan. Outside Japan, Eurus Energy operates wind farms in South Korea, the United States and Europe.
All wind farms in Japan have been working after the tsunami, unlike nuclear power plants. Wind turbines have not been damaged by the earthquake and subsequent tsunami, while the Fukushima nuclear plant suffered the second worst accident of history, after Chernobyl.
Renewable energy will never suffer major accidents or endanger the lives of the people, unlike nuclear power plants. And they are much cheaper in the long term. Fukushima how much will it cost?
Wind turbines have not been damaged by the earthquake and subsequent tsunami that struck the country in March, has confirmed the Secretariat of the Japan Wind Energy Association. Although the transport of energy remains a challenge in Japan confirmed Kuga Iwata, director of the Secretariat of the Japan Association of Wind Energy.
According to Iwata Kuga, an initial telephone survey of 119 members of the Association, companies and municipalities related to wind energy, all wind power plants in the country still in operation after the disaster. “In our history, earthquakes and tsunamis are fairly common, so we’re prepared,” Iwata has said in an email interview. Japan has 2,304 MW installed, after adding 221 MW in 2010.
“The area remains limited to the north of Japan,” Iwata continued. “Tokyo was not damaged, except for temporary power cuts.” EcoPower company, which operates more than 109 wind farms across Japan, mostly in coastal areas, said its other operations were halted during the earthquake, but after that time all its wind farms have been considered safe. “Little by little we all plants operating normally and we would help solve the current problems afflicting the country,” the company said in a statement.
Japan Wind Development Company, the third generator of wind power, has said that its parks were not damaged during the earthquake and has also verified the safety of all employees. The company also confirmed it is pressing ahead with their demonstration project of intelligent networks, an investment of $1,200 million in Rokkasho, in Aomori, northern Japan.
The project explores ways of increasing efficiency and saving energy through smart grid deployment in urban areas. Is being carried out in collaboration with Toyota, Hitachi and Panasonic. “We are working smoothly,” the company said in a statement. The main message we want to convey the Japanese farm sector is the resistance to adversity.
“We’re fine. Japan is to survive and overcome this situation. After the disaster, will invest more in renewable energy development, “said Iwata Kuga.
Solar energy companies, little affected. Yurika Fujimoto, Mitsubishi Electric Corporation, has said its photovoltaic cell manufacturing plant, located to the south, in Nagano, and module plant, located in Kyoto, were far from the epicenter of the earthquake. “There is no significant damage or among employees or facilities,” said Fujimoto.
Exports also have been affected. But you can not say the same for the distribution of equipment and components within Japan itself. Efforts are now focused on the important sending relief teams to the areas most affected by the earthquake and tsunami.