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Wind Power News: Japan

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These news and opinion items are gathered by National Wind Watch to help keep readers informed about developments related to industrial wind energy. They are the products of the organizations or individuals noted and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of National Wind Watch.


August 30, 2018 • JapanPrint storyE-mail story

Japan eyes loosening restrictions on wind power to boost output

The government is set to loosen restrictions on building wind power plants in Japan to boost the introduction of the renewable energy, sources familiar with the matter said Thursday. The Environment Ministry plans to mandate that only large-scale wind power plants undergo environmental impact assessments. While the deregulation will reduce the time and financial burden on plant constructors, conservation groups worry the measure could lead to deforestation and more endangered birds striking windmills. Under the current system, wind power plants . . . Complete story »


July 30, 2018 • JapanPrint storyE-mail story

Poor windmill output hurts Fukushima region recovery

NARAHA, Fukushima Prefecture–In a blow to a region hit hard by the Fukushima nuclear disaster, offshore floating wind turbines being operated on a trial basis here are producing much less electricity than initially anticipated. The disappointing output so far is casting a shadow over the government-backed project. While the capacity factor–the ratio of the actual electricity output to the maximum possible output–should be around 30 percent for new windmills, only one of the three turbines tested in the program affiliated . . . Complete story »


June 25, 2018 • JapanPrint storyE-mail story

Wind-power system off Fukushima performs poorly: sources

Japan’s largest offshore wind-power generation facility, located off Fukushima Prefecture, hardly ever reaches its output capacity of 7,000 kilowatts, sources have said. The turbine operates in an experimental offshore power-generation project run by the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry that was launched in fiscal 2011, soon after the March 2011 earthquake, tsunami and subsequent nuclear accident at the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear power plant in the prefecture. The ministry plans to continue the project until the end of fiscal . . . Complete story »


March 30, 2018 • JapanPrint storyE-mail story

In long-term plan, Japan set to confirm renewables as ‘major’ energy source

The government plans to announce in its long-term energy strategy that renewables are a “major” energy source while continuing to support nuclear power because of its zero carbon emissions, a draft of the plan said Friday. The industry ministry presented the draft to a roundtable of experts studying the nation’s energy policy through 2050, calling renewables an “energy source whose possibility of becoming a major (source) is greatly increasing.” Although attention has been on whether a raw breakdown of the . . . Complete story »


January 10, 2018 • JapanPrint storyE-mail story

Japan to set rules for offshore wind power generation

The government plans to set rules to promote wind power generation, which emits only a small amount of carbon dioxide, in Japanese waters, sources said Tuesday. The rules will be specified in a bill the government plans to submit to the Diet during an ordinary session set to start on Jan. 22. The government hopes to reduce the cost of offshore wind power generation, currently at some ¥36 per kilowatt-hour, which is three to six times higher than in Europe. . . . Complete story »


August 22, 2017 • JapanPrint storyE-mail story

Wind turbine catches fire in shadow of Saga nuclear plant

KARATSU, Saga Prefecture – A 60-meter-high wind turbine [Gamesa G80] near a nuclear power plant in northern Kyushu caught fire on Aug. 21, posing difficulties for fire-fighting efforts from the danger of falling parts. A resident reported the blaze at the Kushizaki wind-generating power plant in an emergency phone call at around 2:55 p.m. One of the turbine blades and the connecting area around the base of the blades caught fire, according to Saga prefectural police and fire department officials. The . . . Complete story »


September 18, 2016 • JapanPrint storyE-mail story

Efforts intensify to protect birds from wind turbines

So-called bird strikes are increasingly common as wind power-generation facilities are built across Japan, prompting a variety of measures to protect wild birds, including making the turbines clearly visible to birds and using sound to ward them off. In Hokkaido, many white-tailed sea eagles – an endangered bird listed in the Environment Ministry’s Red Data Book – have been killed due to hitting wind turbines. At Tomamae municipal Yuhigaoka Power Plant in Hokkaido, there are three wind turbines atop a cliff overlooking . . . Complete story »


March 24, 2016 • JapanPrint storyE-mail story

Japan ups wind safety checks

JAPAN: A government department has recommended larger wind turbines have safety checks on a more regular basis due to recent failures in typhoon season. On 22 March, a Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) working group decided that wind turbines with a capacity in excess of 500kW capacity are to undergo compulsory safety testing every three years. The move can be viewed as highly inclusive, given that 92% of Japan’s turbines fall into that category, according to a subsequent . . . Complete story »


April 12, 2015 • JapanPrint storyE-mail story

Japan to draft guidelines for disposal of solar, wind power facilities

The industry ministry have decided to draft guidelines on how to dispose of and recycle decommissioned solar and wind power facilities. Illegal dumping has been increasing as the machines age and break and frustrated operators get out of the business. Sources said on Saturday that the ministry will explain its decision at a meeting of a subcommittee of the Advisory Committee for Natural Resources and Energy, which advises the minister, on Tuesday. In July 2012, Japan launched the feed-in tariff . . . Complete story »


November 21, 2014 • JapanPrint storyE-mail story

Accidents spur mandatory wind turbine safety checks in Japan

The Japanese government announced plans to hold periodic safety inspections of wind turbines in response to several recent accidents, as the country’s operators were urged to fit lightning protection systems. Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) established a working committee earlier this week to discuss the safety inspections. The Japan Wind Power Association (JWPA) has drawn up a list of recommended safety guidelines and plans to cooperate with METI on the inspections. The organisation – which collects data on . . . Complete story »


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